I know I’m nearly ten years too late, but I finally finished playing through Half-Life today. I picked it up last week on Steam for $9, and once I started playing it, I found myself really enjoying it. I never really meant to play through it before I started playing Half-Life 2 and the episodes on the 360, but I’m glad it’s turned out that way, even though I know there’s not much to link the two stories. It’s also nice to know that I’ve finally finished it, after playing through the first couple of hours maybe half a dozen times over the years.
Though I guess it goes without saying, Half-Life really is a classic, and looking back on it now it’s very easy to see why it was such a revelation when it was released back in 1998. It does a great job of evoking a sense of place, and of involving you in the game’s story. The tale itself is solid, but the real innovation is in how the story is told through talking to characters and interacting with the environment, rather than sitting back to watch some annoying cut-scenes. If this is the calibre of work Valve managed in their debut game so long ago, I can’t wait to see what Half-Life 2 and the episodes have in store for me.