That’s a headline I did not ever plan to write as a video games editor, but here we are. Look at us.

Valve has released a meaty update for its original Half-Life game to celebrate its 25th anniversary, making it the “definitive version” to experience the FPS classic. The update includes quality-of-life improvements, new content, and Steam Deck support. Oh, and they have also made the game free for a limited time.

Valve has added “proper gamepad config”, widescreen FOV support, and has updated the UI for larger screens, or as they put it, “We built most of this stuff for 640×480 CRTs and apparently some of you have upgraded since then.” The game is also now Steam Deck verified, so it should run natively without diving deeper into the config files to play a two-decade-old game.

In terms of the new content, Valve says it has added Half-Life Uplink, a mini-campaign that was originally available only on CDs from magazines (remember those?) and hardware manufacturers. The update also includes four new multiplayer maps that Valve says “push the limits of what’s possible in the Half-Life engine.”

As part of the 25th-anniversary update, Valve uploaded a new documentary with new and old developers that discusses how the company created one of the most iconic gaming franchises in video game history. If you are a fan of Valve, this documentary is a must-watch, but more so to watch Gabe Newell say, “Late is just for a little while, suck is forever,” when talking about delaying the game against the publisher, Sierra Online’s wishes.

As an ardent Half-Life fan, I consider this massive update a precursor to an eventual Half-Life 3 announcement. It may not happen, and most likely, it won’t, but the heart believes what it wants to believe. What do you think? Sound off in the comments, and share in my misery.

Mufaddal Fakhruddin
Mufaddal Fakhruddin

Mufaddal Fakhruddin has been writing about games and technology for the past 15 years. He has lost count as to how many reviews he has written over the years, but he is sure headphone reviews make up at least 70% of that.

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