Ten minutes of Half-Life: Alyx: The biggest VR goosebumps we’ve ever had

erek

[H]F Junkie
Joined
Dec 19, 2005
Messages
8,308
Hmm, is it really that good?

"The above galleries only tell part of the story. That's partially because it's easier to understand the actions of shooting, reloading, throwing, and Gravity Glove-ing by seeing them in action, but it's also because the natural movement of a VR camera changes the way these videos' beautiful and series-allegiant scenery plays out. And that's saying nothing about the immaculate backing music in each sequence, which already has me itchy to buy Alyx's official soundtrack whenever it goes on sale. Hence, I've embedded all three videos below, and I strongly encourage any interested Half-Life fan—or, honestly, any doubtful VR haters—to see what's about to land in three weeks on all major PC-VR systems."







https://arstechnica.com/gaming/2020...alyx-the-biggest-vr-goosebumps-weve-ever-had/
 
Last edited by a moderator:

dgz

Supreme [H]ardness
Joined
Feb 15, 2010
Messages
5,838
Not going to spoil myself by watching it. Hope it's good cause that Index of mine has been collecting dust for over a month. Driving trucks around Europe is not bad, though.

only if they make a PC version too

I can see it in my Steam account. Guess I've been a peasant all along :(
 

Accursed

Gawd
Joined
Mar 28, 2008
Messages
547
My play space has gotten smaller and smaller. Wonder if it will support seated play? From the videos it doesn't look like it.
 

schoolslave

[H]ard|Gawd
Joined
Dec 7, 2010
Messages
1,152
Personally I am not interested in VR due to floating hands, teleportation movement, motion sickness etc. I won't bash VR either though.
But I do have to ask - why do the textures look incredibly low-res? Even the lighting looks half-assed - is this running on HL2's engine?
 

M76

[H]F Junkie
Joined
Jun 12, 2012
Messages
13,139
Personally I am not interested in VR due to floating hands, teleportation movement, motion sickness etc. I won't bash VR either though.
But I do have to ask - why do the textures look incredibly low-res? Even the lighting looks half-assed - is this running on HL2's engine?
I think because they want it to be fast enough on entry level systems to get an acceptable experience. I don't think the target audience is us. I expect a walking (teleportation) simulator with impossibly easy combat.
 

vegeta535

[H]F Junkie
Joined
Jul 19, 2013
Messages
9,968
I think because they want it to be fast enough on entry level systems to get an acceptable experience. I don't think the target audience is us. I expect a walking (teleportation) simulator with impossibly easy combat.
This. People's expectations are too high for this game.
 

sc5mu93

[H]ard|Gawd
Joined
Jul 11, 2018
Messages
1,070
Now if we could just buy Knuckles controllers...
 
Last edited:

M76

[H]F Junkie
Joined
Jun 12, 2012
Messages
13,139
I just got home and watched the videos, i'm getting sick by the teleportation thing already, it's really annoying. The floating hands is just uncanney, but the teleportation is outright nauseating.
 

viivo

[H]ard|Gawd
Joined
Sep 7, 2005
Messages
1,695
People who have not spent time with VR games have trouble understanding that movement must be limited in some way. Before I ever put on an HMD I had the idea I could directly and freely control a character in realtime with the controller, and it wasn't until I found a game that lets you do just that I realized what a very bad idea it is.

Not everyone has a big space in which to walk around in VR, so developers have to do their best within the confines of VR movement to accomodate all setups.
 

Darunion

Supreme [H]ardness
Joined
Oct 6, 2010
Messages
4,537
I just got home and watched the videos, i'm getting sick by the teleportation thing already, it's really annoying. The floating hands is just uncanney, but the teleportation is outright nauseating.

For me personally, it is easier to stomach than when your character walks but you are stationary. When you walk and your character walks with you, that is of course the easiest but as said, the living room is only so big lol
 

Accursed

Gawd
Joined
Mar 28, 2008
Messages
547
Red Matter has a slightly weird mechanic where you do low gravity hop type thing. At first I almost kept falling when it happened, but after a while it was ok, I'm kinda used to the teleport anymore, anything else feels weird to me now.

The West World game you would move the analog stick and the character would walk, that's the only time I've gotten motion sickness.
 

Grimlakin

[H]ard|Gawd
Joined
Oct 9, 2001
Messages
1,334
Meh... VR only... flavor splash... not really my thing. Come to a monitor and let me play with a keyboard and mouse and I'll be interested.
 
D

Deleted member 134608

Guest
As long as I can use regular locomotion and turn off all the motion sickness nannies, I'll enjoy it. I don't get motion sick from VR at all, so all those compensations drive me crazy.
 

tunatime

Well...OK
Joined
Sep 15, 2011
Messages
5,344
Why does no vr have arms? Like how hard is it to have a am that moves with a hand...?
 

Darunion

Supreme [H]ardness
Joined
Oct 6, 2010
Messages
4,537
Why does no vr have arms? Like how hard is it to have a am that moves with a hand...?

Because it would look worse. Hold your hand still and you can still move your elbow with just your wrist and shoulder moving, the game would not know this motion and would not be able to connect the joints correctly and still look stupid to our brains. Would require another sensor to do correctly.
 

NeoNemesis

2[H]4U
Joined
Mar 10, 2004
Messages
2,466
I just got home and watched the videos, i'm getting sick by the teleportation thing already, it's really annoying. The floating hands is just uncanney, but the teleportation is outright nauseating.

It's totally optional. You can toggle teleportation on and off.

In the below video you can see they toggle it off half way through.

https://ca.ign.com/videos/half-life-alyx-9-minutes-of-gameplay-ign-first

I have no answer to the arms thing. I can only guess that it's difficult to animate properly and that 'nothing at all' is better than the alternative.
 

FrgMstr

Just Plain Mean
Staff member
Joined
May 18, 1997
Messages
54,075
Been doing VR for a long time. So the folks that have issues with floating hands have likely never played any VR games for the most part. Arms mess things up. Looking at you Boneworks! Need elbow trackers for those to truly work right, and arms break your line of sight many times. Floating hands are a good thing. Trust me. After a couple minutes you will no longer focus on that and be fully immersed.

HL:A will support different locamotion mechanics and will support seated, standing, and room scale.

All you posting that you will not play it because of VR, we don't care, save your keystrokes.

As for the videos, I don't think those will spoil any of the story.
 

Pringle

2[H]4U
Joined
Sep 30, 2012
Messages
3,778
Red Matter has a slightly weird mechanic where you do low gravity hop type thing. At first I almost kept falling when it happened, but after a while it was ok, I'm kinda used to the teleport anymore, anything else feels weird to me now.

The West World game you would move the analog stick and the character would walk, that's the only time I've gotten motion sickness.

Dunno if you've played or seen Lone Echo, but that has an extremely fun no-gravity method of movement. You literally need to grab hold of the environment and pull your way, using your momentum to control your movement.

Takes some time to get accustomed to, but it blew my mind
 

Ricky T

Limp Gawd
Joined
Nov 7, 2019
Messages
404
I just got home and watched the videos, i'm getting sick by the teleportation thing already, it's really annoying. The floating hands is just uncanney, but the teleportation is outright nauseating.
You have that backwards as the normal locomotion is what makes most people sick and the whole reason they have teleporting is to not have people wanting to vomit.

I seem to have lost interest in VR and actually got rid of my Oculus rift. I really just don't enjoy having something on my face especially with a cable attached to it. Lone Echo was about the only game I enjoyed playing anyway.
 

Kardonxt

2[H]4U
Joined
Apr 13, 2009
Messages
3,635
Game play was cool, The Crash Bandicoot video that loaded bellow was way more interesting tho lol.
 

SomeoneElse

[H]ard|Gawd
Joined
Jan 16, 2007
Messages
1,941
I have to say the teleportation thing is kind of annoying. I haven't have very much experience with VR rigs but don't they have a D-pad or joystick they can actually move with? It just makes the experience so broken and choppy due to the movements are limited to chunks instead of fluid.
 

Absalom

[H]ard|Gawd
Joined
Oct 3, 2007
Messages
1,076
This looks really well made. It seems the bar has been raised in terms of quality. VR needs this. The whole demo quality being the typical VR standard isn't good for its longevity. Need more AAA titles to keep it relevant.

Most the criticisms mentioned thus far seem like nitpicks and could be applied to any VR title. VR has constraints. Compromises have to be made to fit within those constraints. I see nothing game-breaking here.

To add my own criticism to the mix, I would like to see a fast-forward animation option instead of insta-teleport for movement. A fast animation would feel less clunky and mitigate disorientation.

Now, if only I had some VR hardware...
 
Last edited:

M76

[H]F Junkie
Joined
Jun 12, 2012
Messages
13,139
Because it would look worse. Hold your hand still and you can still move your elbow with just your wrist and shoulder moving, the game would not know this motion and would not be able to connect the joints correctly and still look stupid to our brains. Would require another sensor to do correctly.
That's just an excuse, there were games that allowed you to move your arm freely, that didn't have floating ghost hands. It should be at the least optional. It is certainly not impossible and a hell of a lot less disturbing than hands that attach to nothing.
 

M76

[H]F Junkie
Joined
Jun 12, 2012
Messages
13,139
You have that backwards as the normal locomotion is what makes most people sick and the whole reason they have teleporting is to not have people wanting to vomit.
Just watching the video is making me sick. If the best that vr can offer today is sickness or teleportation with floaty ghost hands I decline the offer. They need to sell me the product, not the other way around.

I do think VR can be great for sim racing and flight sims, but beyond that it comes with too many compromises and early adopter fees.
 

Accursed

Gawd
Joined
Mar 28, 2008
Messages
547
Dunno if you've played or seen Lone Echo, but that has an extremely fun no-gravity method of movement. You literally need to grab hold of the environment and pull your way, using your momentum to control your movement.

Takes some time to get accustomed to, but it blew my mind
Does sound interesting, but doens't look like I'll have achance to try it. Looks like it's an Oculus Rift only title, and I have a Vive Pro and a Quest. I'll have to wait for a steam or Quest version.
 

Hagrid

[H]F Junkie
Joined
Nov 23, 2006
Messages
9,157
Why show old teleportation movement. Nasty......

Game looks fun! If they have normal movement, I want it!
 

N4CR

Supreme [H]ardness
Joined
Oct 17, 2011
Messages
4,948
Looks great and will be keen to play buttt the pistol upgrade stuff I found a bit immersion-breaking. HL has always been 'pick up/given a better gun', the upgrade stuff is a little COD/BF type and doesn't fit HL IMO.
Don't like the hop mode, almost seems too fast/like cheating.
 

RanceJustice

Supreme [H]ardness
Joined
Jun 9, 2003
Messages
6,350
Very excited for this . More Half Life is great. I have a new Valve Index and it is my first VR kit and I'm happy to start at the top. Valve took a great step forward by trying to make this title not only a good Half Life game, but a VR title to move VR forward - AND have it accessible to everyone. I'm glad that, having an Index I'm likely to get the best overall experience with the Knuckles , tracking, and display etc.. but I don't hold it against them for making it accessible to earlier Vives, Oculus, or WMR well supported. I get allowing the "point-and-zap-forward" movement - which allows those who are seated or standing to also play - but I look forward to room-scale walking around. Even better, Including Alyx plus some extra goodies for ALL Index owners prior to Alyx's release is a fantastic gesture! Better yet, is support for the game on Linux, even though it will be officially supported post launch.

You know, while I'm thinking of it., I've been playing another sort of "VR" recently - Ring Fit Adventure for Nintendo Switch. Its a pity its not available for PC as well, but the idea is really neat as a way to gamify well rounded exercise. It uses a custom pilates-ring with sensors into which you plug a Joy-Con, but it also requires a leg-strap into which you slide another Joy-Con. In the game, the leg-band primarily detects your movement both in exercises that involve your legs and notably in running - you jog in place in order to run in game or - if set in quiet mode - you do mini-squat knee bounces. I wonder if something like this would work with VR, in concert with the rest of the sensors. The sensor suite of the Index between headset, knuckles, and lighthouses must be more sophisticated than what Ring Fit Adventure uses. For those who want to move but not able to really use a lot of "real" mobility due to space constraints, could they set it up where you at least walk/jog in place? You can turn and whatnot to change direction, lean, crouch etc... and it would seem to only need a leg sensor or two? At least until people get omni-directional treadmills and or have "holodeck" rooms for VR, this seems a compromise between the "stand in place, point and the game ports you forward a few feet" vs the "you can walk, but no more than a few feet before the game has to make you turn around" systems.
 

zehoo

Limp Gawd
Joined
Aug 22, 2004
Messages
458
While I really want to play this, it may not be for another year or two. I barely play my current PSVR library.
 

Darunion

Supreme [H]ardness
Joined
Oct 6, 2010
Messages
4,537
That's just an excuse, there were games that allowed you to move your arm freely, that didn't have floating ghost hands. It should be at the least optional. It is certainly not impossible and a hell of a lot less disturbing than hands that attach to nothing.

No one thinks that way that has actually used VR for more than just playing at a friends house. It is horrible and until there is another sensor, arms shouldnt be in the games. Trust me, once you play for a bit, you don't even notice it, if you are getting stuck up on details like that when playing then you are ruining your own experience.

I mean how much more engrossing is playing a shooter on a 2d monitor using a keyboard and mouse to run around and shoot? I have used firearms for a long time, never have i thought a mouse felt like i was shooting in a game. VR is closer, at least allows you to aim with your hand and finger instead of crosshair on the screen.
 

CaptNumbNutz

Fully [H]
Joined
Apr 11, 2007
Messages
23,996
Ok. I'm confused about a couple things.

1st. Why to I have to point somewhere to move my character there? Why can't I use a thumbstick/touchpad/button on the VR controller or a keyboard to move? Having to point to something to teleport there ruins immersion. Did I miss something or is there another method to move about? The 2nd video seems to suggest there is another movement method but it could still be scripted events. 3rd video is right back to the teleportation movement model again, but in this fight scene leaping cover to cover it works a little better for gameplay. I just would not want this setup ALL the time.

2nd. minor thing... 2nd video, she throws a "grenade" (explosive bug/combine larvae) over the top of a door... the door still blows outwards? I thought Valve was all about realistic physics engines not scripted events.
 
Last edited:

M76

[H]F Junkie
Joined
Jun 12, 2012
Messages
13,139
2nd. minor thing... 2nd video, she throws a "grenade" (explosive bug/combine larvae) over the top of a door... the door still blows outwards? I thought Valve was all about realistic physics engines not scripted events.
Yeah I chuckled there too, I mean if you're going to script an explosion at least do it right.
 

HardUp4HardWare

Supreme [H]ardness
Joined
Aug 30, 2005
Messages
4,274
Glad to see this is getting positive reactions.
I mean, I love HL so this is a no brainer. Cool!
 

Youn

Supreme [H]ardness
Joined
Jan 22, 2007
Messages
5,965
ugh, floaty hands are too immersion-breaking, will not play...
240?cb=20080419135704&fill=transparent.png
 
Top