Half-Life: Alyx Devs Considered Making A Portal VR Game
It looks like Half-Life: Alyx wasn’t the only VR title that was considered by the team at Valve. Before the team landed on making another Half-Life game using their new set of VR tools, Valve took a look back at some of its existing IPs and at one point considered making a Portal VR game, though in the end there was too much working against the idea to move forward.
In a recent interview with the folks over at VG247, Valve programmer and designer Robin Walker spoke about what led the team to considering Portal as an outlet for VR. “This is in a period of time where we’re pretty much done with The Lab,” Walker said. “And so we’ve just spent pretty much a year building stuff in VR, we’ve got the things we’ve learned there. When we got to looking at our various IPs and asking ourselves which one of these would work well in VR, it was pretty easy to cross things off the list very quickly.” Switching over to said things that were crossed off the list, Walker goes on to state that there didn’t seem to be much point in making a multiplayer VR game, as the audience size wasn’t there yet.
So we looked at things like Portal, which is usually people’s first guess for what would work well in VR, and it was ours too, but as soon as we started looking at what to bring forward from Portal into VR, actually most of Portal’s later levels all rely on momentum being maintained as you go through portals.”
Unfortunately, the need to rely on momentum was what ended up being a primary concern for the team, helping pivot the developers into going in a different direction with Half-Life: Alyx instead. “In the end, Half-Life was the one that worked best,” Walker continues. “There’s a set of things that are very much core components of Half-Life. The original Half-Life was built by looking at what was going on in the shooter space at the time and thinking about how there seemed to be an opportunity to do a little more than just [fighting].
It’s certainly interesting to consider what could have been had the team not gone with Half-Life: Alyx. Still, there’s always the future, and there could be a better way to shape a VR experience around a game like Portal once VR tech becomes more widely used.
Half-Life: Alyx is now available.
So, thoughts on the idea of a Portal VR game? Let us know in the comments section below, and as always, stay tuned to Don’t Feed the Gamers for all the latest gaming and entertainment news! Don’t forget to follow DFTG on Twitter for our 24/7 news feed!
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Ryan "Cinna" Carrier2278 Posts
Ryan is a writer and the head editor for Don't Feed the Gamers. When he isn't writing, Ryan is likely considering yet another playthrough of Final Fantasy IX. He's also the DFTG cinnamon bun.