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VR PC VR - Hardware, Software, Recommendations & Discussion Thread

Al3x1s

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Some of the last page's highlights (I can only include 10 media and it's hard to choose, check the page for more, there were videos, updates, releases or smaller neat stuff, some of them pertaining to imminent releases like The Walking Dead: Saints & Sinners - 1 week left btw!):





There is also the tracking system to take into consideration. With the index you have to have two lighthouse tracking boxes fitted to the opposite sides of the room to track, its rock solid tracking. I don't have an Index yet, im in a queue waiting since they are all sold out, February I think.

The Rift S is not limited by external sensors and can easily be moved around from pc to pc or different areas. For example, my living room has an open space where my lighthouses/Rift Sensors are setup and my Vive or Rift CV1 is limited to that area only. Where with the Rift S I can move it easily outside that area and sit on my sofa if I want to sit comfortably and chill or I can unplug it and plug it into my sons pc upstairs without external sensors and with minimal fuss. The tracking on the Rift S is very good though and even though its not Lighthouse good, its much better than PSVR.

I think that is an underated plus on the Rift S and the Quest.
Well he did mention the inside out tracking on the S by himself so I didn't mention that stuff, it seemed he was aware and was mostly inquiring about the Index it seemed. But the lighthouse tracking isn't a big hassle when it only requires power, no connection to the PC, unlike original Rift sensors.

WMR pioneered that of course, but the S and Quest are definitely the best examples of that. I'm sure most are aware of that ease of use for S and especially for the Quest with the constant yapping about untethered, and now being able to tether wherever you like on top of course, it's not hidden...

Btw they need line of sight to each other so they're not meant to go to complete opposite sides, like, not diagonally in a square room with you and stuff inbetween, they need to be on like, two corners of the same wall in the room iirc. I guess it can vary like if you have them high up or whatever too.

Edit: nope, ignore me.
 
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gifgaf

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Btw they need line of sight to each other so they're not meant to go to complete opposite sides, like, not diagonally in a square room with you and stuff inbetween, they need to be on like, two corners of the same wall in the room iirc. I guess it can vary like if you have them high up or whatever too.
Thanks, but I have a Rift CV1 and VIve from launch, so I understand how it works. I was not going to into details but opposite in each corner is the exact way to setup for maximum coverage.

Maybe your mistaking the CV1, originally the 2 sensor setup was on the same wall for 180 tracking?
 
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Knch

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Btw they need line of sight to each other so they're not meant to go to complete opposite sides, like, not diagonally in a square room with you and stuff inbetween, they need to be on like, two corners of the same wall in the room iirc. I guess it can vary like if you have them high up or whatever too.

Setup guide seems to disagree with you. (I had my Vive and now Index lighthouses on opposite corners, always worked fine (unless I forgot to power them up...))
 
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Al3x1s

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Good to know, my bad :)

It does say they need a view of each other but I guess your body and stuff doesn't occlude that then? That's cool.
 
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gifgaf

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Good to know, my bad :)

It does say they need a view of each other but I guess your body and stuff doesn't occlude that then? That's cool.
Well if your hands are in front then the one Lighthouse tracks them, If its behind then the other tracks, face to the side they both track.
 

Knch

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Good to know, my bad :)

It does say they need a view of each other but I guess your body and stuff doesn't occlude that then? That's cool.
Put them as high up as you can (as instructed) so they can see each other above your head. (Get a chair and stand on it, get one of these ladder things or be adventurous and jump. :p )
 
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Al3x1s

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Minigolf VR fun returns to PC.
 
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gifgaf

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I did not have time yesterday to reply to these comments so I will do it now.

WMR pioneered that of course, but the S and Quest are definitely the best examples of that. I'm sure most are aware of that ease of use for S and especially for the Quest with the constant yapping about untethered, and now being able to tether wherever you like on top of course, it's not hidden...
Having a decent untehered VR headset that can play games well enough with 2 motion controls is a big deal, I am not sure if you are keeping up with sales but I believe the Quest is outselling all other headsets right now because of portability. Being able to carry it around and play VR games anywhere you want like a handheld games console is an eye opener. You sound like all the VR naysayers console fanboy on this forum with "constant yapping about untethered". As for the "It's not hidden" quote, I was offering my experience to the OP and adding to the discussion which I thought was relevant even if you do not.

Well he did mention the inside out tracking on the S by himself so I didn't mention that stuff, it seemed he was aware and was mostly inquiring about the Index it seemed. But the lighthouse tracking isn't a big hassle when it only requires power, no connection to the PC, unlike original Rift sensors.
I ran the lighthouse for 3 years before before I bought a Rift S and I can tell you it is a hassle to move in comparison to the RIft S or the Quest. Trust me when I say that not being tethered to Lighthouses or a PC is a big deal for the average consumer.
 
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Al3x1s

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Dude, what are you even on about? Where did I say Quest or S aren't selling or otherwise show I'm unaware of their success? I said the opposite, in that those untethered/built-in sensor aspects are not underrated as you wrote but rather well known, hyped and often talked about.

As for what is outselling what, we have no real idea on that front, there are no official concrete numbers from any of the big VR companies, we just know that pretty much every popular set is getting sold out and severely back-ordered months ahead lately. Which is great to know.

As for how important that is, that's up to the individual. Some are constantly moving them around, others set them up once as they have preset play spaces and PC areas. Nowhere did I say lighthouse is just the same as inside out sensors, only that it's less hassle than the og Rift.

Those are the sets I mostly recommend to folks myself for those reasons & the price (mostly the S because it's more comfortable if one doesn't care for the portability aspect and Link wasn't yet proven - it is now for the most part). When did I say anything like a VR nay sayer, lol?
 
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gifgaf

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Huh? Where did I say Quest isn't selling or otherwise show I'm unaware of its success? I said the opposite, in that those untethered/built-in sensor aspects are not underrated as you claimed but rather well known, hyped, often talked about and likely a big part of their success.

When did I say anything like a VR nay sayer, that has to be a joke, lol.
The whole tone of your post is dimissive of my reply.

The "constant yapping about untethered" is where I believe I said you sounded like a VR naysayer, did you miss that? I guess I should have said you sounded like one of the console fanboys that are arguing on here right now instead. My point is we should be defending all headsets up instead of putting one down because you dislike it.

My reply was an innocent point about how I felt with the experience I had and you felt like you had to shoot it down, even going as far as giving false information about Lighthouses even though you did not know how they worked.
 
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Al3x1s

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That's all in your head. You quoted me first as if you were counter-arguing my suggestions to the guy too, hence I kept responding.

Yes, when there's constant yapping about something it's not underrated is what I was saying. It's still absurd to think I'm of all people a VR nay sayer. But you do you.

Also, before your edits you seemed to think I was right about the sensors so good thing Knch corrected me. Which is fine, people make mistakes. Sorry my mistakes offend you.
 
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gifgaf

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That's all in your head. You quoted me first as if you were counter-arguing my suggestions to the guy too, hence I kept responding.

Also, before your edits you seemed to think I was right about the sensors so good thing Knch corrected me. Which is fine, people make mistakes. Sorry my mistakes offend you.
I did not once say that you were right about the Lighthouses, that is complete bullshit. Did I not tell you I own the the Vive and Lighthouses, why the hell would I say you were right. I just did not dismiss your reply until I double checked, just in case you knew something I did not. Thats how you reply to comments, not just throwing some comment out there because you "thought" that's how it worked. Research my man.
 
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Al3x1s

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So you edited the VR nay-sayer to console fanboy. What did I appear to be a fanboy of?

I didn't say you "stated" it or "told" me that, are you reading the things you quote at least (clearly not since you seem to think this was a conversation you needed to use to educate me on this or that matter that I've already discussed myself at length in previous posts long before you)?

Your first pre-edit response to my post was that you're aware of how shit works because you have them, and you just used that description because it was an easy/short way to explain it. That implied you thought I was right, but were already aware, so, again, good thing Knch corrected me 100%.

You then edited that post to be in line with his corrections and my admission. People make mistakes, again, I'm sorry mine offended you so (even though I did state an iirc in there, so there you go, I didn't rc, lol, duh, nowhere did I proclaim a definitive statement around it before Knch).

None of that was a reason to speak as if Quest selling is news to me (or that untethered/inside out are underrated features), I'm sure I've posted more about Oculus and suggested their stuff more. Or whatever else you argued as if I said the opposite (I didn't). Now please, take this derail to PM...
 
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Thaedolus

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One thing I think is worth sorta correcting: the light houses don’t “track” or “sense” anything AFAIK, they simply sweep the room with pulses which the headset and controllers detect via various sensors, which allows them to orient themselves as you move around. I haven’t played around with moving them or trying different positions since I just mounted them by the ceiling in opposite corners of the room I play in, but I’m considering taking my setup to my upstairs front room for more space when HL Alyx comes out. I’m pretty sure I can just set one lighthouse on a bookshelf and the other in my fireplace and be good to go, but I guess we’ll see.

In any case, moving them and my PC seems about as cumbersome as taking a Wii somewhere, meaning not bad at all, but I definitely get the appeal of the Quest. My friends have one and we’ve tried the same games back to back on the Index and on the Quest. It’s cool, but it’s heavier, less comfortable, worse sound and the tracking and refresh rate are hard to adjust to immediately after using the Index. But it’s still cool tech. It’s unfortunate we still have to choose a trade off between quality and convenience but for now I think there’s a device for everyone, depending on their priorities
 
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Al3x1s

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Moving on. Removed the L4D3 stuff, Valve shot it down, not that it means much either way.
 
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Al3x1s

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The neat freebie Tea for God has been getting plenty updates, the latest changelog is here but there's been many more additions since I first mentioned it.

 
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Al3x1s

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Edit: removed VR Focus' 30 min gameplay vid cos it's just horrid quality with completely desynced audio.
 
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Al3x1s

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Project TERMINUS is a survival horror VR FPS, taking place in the mighty city of Paris. The project in still in the beginning of its development and we are seeking for support. Download the free gameplay demo of the game:

Oculus QUEST: https://sdq.st/a-467
Oculus RIFT/RIFT S: https://casual-vr.com/installer_terminus_demo_one.exe
Edit: I just tried that Terminus alpha/demo thingie. It's pretty well done all things considered. The fov seems to be a tad off for Rift so there's some distortion, but other than that it looks fairly decent, the interactions with things like doors, drawers and cupboards is actually rather intuitive and natural, but the usable held objects can feel off without the proper animation/hand pose and what not, I guess that stuff is early still, especially the axe. The phone is damn cool though with an AR style interface. I turned the game off after the first enemies I avoided by ducking behind a kiosk thing with a cash register, I didn't want to try and get past them or see if they'd return, lol. Next time. Anyway, this is a project to watch if they get to make it into a full game as their intent is, there's a solid base here already. I didn't even mind there's no artificial turning method included, just your physical movement, though I'd hope they will include stick turning later on too.
 
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Al3x1s

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Also, that Doctor Who: The Runaway freebie (top of this page) has yet to show released for me on Steam, even though it was supposed to days ago, but it's no longer region-locked to the UK on the Oculus store so I just downloaded it from there instead. There's also a VR video version you can just watch instead.
 
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wondermega

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I need to pay more attention to this thread, tons of activity in here. Big thanks to the posters doing the lord's work and keeping the updates coming, it is appreciated! Me - I have OG Vive and PSVR, do most of my gaming on PSVR but I want to pay more attention to the PC stuff as it is a lot more experimental, etc. I'm also a dev, wrapping up an AR project ATM and then I will turn my sights to a VR game as well, I'm very excited! Hopefully starting on that in the springtime at some point..
 

Al3x1s

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3 days left for The Walking Dead: Saints & Sinners. I wonder if we'll get a new launch trailer soon, please!

 
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Techies

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I have a massive backlog, but Saint and Sinners will be pushed. in front if it gets released. Great storytelling, great gemeplay and mechanics. with lots of attention to details. Holding my thumbs for a great game, the developer did not seem to have very successful games though, but one thing I noted the few that played them loved them.

So I think these developers might be hungry for an audience and gave their best with this one. It's only 3 more days and I haven''t seen announced delays so this might end up being one of the best VR games created thus far.
 
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Al3x1s

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Nostos isn't being abandoned, the team vows to improve it in all the right ways and explains some of the things they've already done:
Also, Budget Cuts 2 just got a smooth locomotion update.
Obviously the game wasn't made with that in mind so you will need teleportation to navigate portions still.

It's basically from a cheat menu, enabling various mutators which can disable achievements, though mutators that make enemies and shit more challenging instead leave them intact. Neat stuff:
 
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Wonko_C

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Half-Life reddit AMA mentioned above is live. Does any decent/juicy info come out of these? Also, wow:

Edit: oh, you can ignore the rabble and just view that account's post history for the answers alone, hehe:
Awesome. Thanks for putting this together! I'm hyped for this game even though I'm not a HL fan. (the 2nd game gave me terrible motion sickness when I played it on PC back in 2005.)

BTW: Did no one ask why did they cancel showing the game at the VGAs?
 
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Al3x1s

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Aaaand it's done. 4k+ comments. Some nice info. Physics stuff, enemies stuff, weapons stuff, interactions stuff, inventory stuff, sound stuff, SDK stuff, stuff stuff, etc. I'm now curious about the whole no arms thing. I don't want arms if they're gonna be janky like in Boneworks so I didn't mind the lack of (even though in games like Lone Echo they're smoother and don't feel janky as in Boneworks they also don't have as many interactions). But they said even though they're invisible there's an amount of interactions with them still. I hope that doesn't lead to unintended interactions as in 99% of Boneworks where you can even see your body. I'm sure they're working to have things feel natural and smooth, maybe it's only to a limited degree to avoid situations where objects/stuff are between your hand and your body, right up your wrist, which could look off, but we'll see how they do things when they show more footage and when we get to play too.

Thanks everyone! The team is heading back to our desks to work towards shipping the game but we've really enjoyed this and hope you did as well.
There was a process of upresing some familiar assets from HL2. During this process, we were always looking for opportunities to add more detail and leverage VR interactions, and pack as much world building into those new detail as possible. The health charger you see in the trailer is a good example of this, we tried to do this wherever possible, whilst honoring the original designs.
Yep, one of the various internal prototypes that led to HL:A was a slice of HL-style gunplay in The Lab. Geoff has told us he wants to cover some of those prototypes more in his Final Hours of HL:A.
Physical merch is something we want to do more of. We plan to have some of it available before release.

Working on HL:A before we announced it was pretty worrisome. I have a teenage son, and for 4 years I've refused to tell him what game I was working on, because I knew he wouldn't be able to keep it to himself. On the team we joked that releasing the game was much less scary than announcing it. But in the end, we are very happy with how it's been received, and we're really excited to get it finished and into your hands.
Playtesters have taken a similar amount of time to complete Half-Life: Alyx as they did to complete Half-Life 2. The games are comparable in terms of total amount of content.
Jamaal here… It’s been great to work on these classic characters and seeing them in VR has really excited everyone on the team. The HL:A trailer gave you a taste of what is coming, but we are avoiding spoiling too much at this point.

When it comes to the work the community does around the HL Series, we are humbled by the affinity and creativity that people have for the story and characters. We hope everyone will be as excited with Alyx’s journey in HL:A. Returning to HL has been extremely motivating. We have a lot of affection for the universe and characters, and personally I am proud to be helping build on something so iconic. The team has many of the original HL developers and a lot of new creative people who have made some integral additions to HL:A and the overall HALF LIFE storyline.

I don’t know what we will do next with HL, but I’m looking forward to what you all think of HL:A.
For the Citadel, The fiction we went with involved the citadel's full height core being teleported in place, like a giant spear in the ground. The combine then build around this core fleshing it out from gathered resources, which is how you see it in the trailer. An under construction citadel was useful visual cliche that helped establish an earlier timeline than HL2.
We don't render arms due to our experiences with playtesting - briefly, we found that players themselves don't notice them missing (spectators do, obviously), and they don't like them obscuring their view.

We actually simulate invisible arms though, which connect from your hands back up to your HMD, and we use those to detect impossible things, like completely closing a drawer over your wrist.

We're planning on releasing a video going into the tech behind our VR hands / interactions / etc, so there'll be more on this soon.
Index controller finger-tracking allows for greater player expression and more opportunities for fine-grained engagement with the world. But the game was tested with all major VR solutions throughout development to ensure full compatibility for all required interactions.
Most of the gore is based on meat and vegetable recordings, with some condiment recordings as well.

We've also killed a lot of Zombies.
You can put a bucket on a headcrab, and it'll move the bucket as it crawls around. Playtesters all keep reporting it as a bug.
Dave here (Sound Designer) - A short and incomplete list of audio features we've added or improved for HL:A -

*Soundscape system improved to be more fully integrated with the audio system as a whole.
*Our music system is new.
*Numerous Steam Audio improvements.
*Huge amount of work on the lower level audio systems.
*New tools for mixing and implementing sounds.

From a Sound Design perspective we've had to change how we think about the sounds we make and implement. A lot of things are the same as making a traditional game, good art/sound is good in VR as well, but there are new factors as well. A main one for me was figuring out ways of making environments sonically interesting for players who want to take their time and explore, which happens much more frequently in VR.
Our weapons all require only one hand, but they can be optionally grabbed and steadied by your offhand. We really wanted to focus on simultaneous two handed play throughout the game, so we needed the player to always be able to easily have a free hand. We keep that hand pretty busy with gravity gloves, movement, world interactions, flashlight, and so on.

We have a few systems for inventory and weapon selection, all designed with the goal of keeping the players eyes on the environment as much as possible. We have an 'over the shoulder' contextual inventory system for ammo on your off hand, Your weapon hand has a quick weapon select feature, and we have a couple of wrist bags for some of the other items.
What is the ending?

We can't tell you, even though we definitely have one, because it would be a huge spoiler. But if you do have an idea for an ending, feel free to forward it. Today if possible.
This is Corey, a level designer here. Hammer in Source 2 has been overhauled from the ground up. Everything from how geometry is built and textured to how asset creation is done has been improved to increase the speed and ease at which we can build and iterate on levels.

One big feature for us on HL:A was the addition of a system similar to layers, where individual map files from multiple level designers, environment artists, and sound designers are combined into a single map. This had a huge impact on how many disciplines could get their hands into each map, which resulted in a much denser level of content throughout the game.
Hi MontyAtWork! Half-Life isn't like Fight Club- there was never a first rule of "we must never speak of it!" over the last decade or so. The real answer is super simple: We didn't talk about Half-Life for a long time because we weren't actively working on a Half-Life game. Once Half-Life: Alyx became a reality internally, it was already clear to us that this was something we wanted to involve the community in. We're going to be doing more of this in the next few weeks as we prepare to launch it! (Oh, and the actual first rule of Half-Life? There must be a train in the game, or we legally cannot ship it- at least according to Wolpaw in a previously answered question here.)
We're using Steam Audio HRTF, DSP, and occlusion in HL:A. Having the SA development team in the same building has been really beneficial to the audio team since we've been able quickly iterate with them on feature requests and performance issues.
This is Wolpaw: I personally prefer writing games where the viewpoint character speaks. We made the silence of the protagonist into a joke in the Portals, but you only get to pull that gag once. I had a lot fun writing for the left 4 deads where the characters were all little chatterboxes, so if I had my way we wouldn't do any more silent protagonists. That said, the I don't get my way as often as I deserve so who knows what's going to happen.
Hey Boldhams… We did include many of our favorite creatures from the previous games with some interesting twists, but we don’t want to spoil too much of what you will be experiencing in HL:A.
We've never been able to figure out where the rumors of us falling out with Marc came from, because there's no truth to it. He's been super generous with his time throughout the development of HL:A, answering many questions from Erik, Jay, and Sean as they hammered away on the story. As is always the case with Marc, we send him an email, and he sends us a response, and then roughly 40 more replies to his own email.

Several of the HL:A team members worked on HL1. There are some things we think we did better in HL1 than HL2, so we did go back to look at it again. As an example of that, the soldier AI in HL1 was something we looked at carefully during the development of the Combine Soldiers in HL:A.
Hey SmanDaMan Jamaal here.. we always enjoy speaking with the community. Our games like Dota 2 and Counter-Strike have a long history of ongoing communication with their players. For HL:A, our first single-player campaign in several years, we wanted to be able to speak to the community in a different way than we do with our service games. That prompted much of the recent work we’ve done on social media and other venues like the new HL:A site. It was a great opportunity to widen our outreach as Valve more broadly.

The team is working diligently and we are on track to deliver HL:A on our announced released date. It’s an exciting time.

We don't want to spoil too much of the game, but my personal favorite mechanic is being able to grab and manipulate so many different things with my hands
Dave here (Sound Designer) -

Music on HL:A is being done by Mike Morasky (Portal 2, TF2, more!), and I know he's talked with Kelly quite a bit about his approach to the music of Half-Life. So you'll probably hear some of that come through but in Mike's unique style.
Right now it's around 80 people, which puts it as the largest single team we've ever had at Valve.
This is Wolpaw: I don't think it's changed dramatically. Honestly, though, I think the half life games are closer in tone to the portal games than they are to, say, The Last of Us. I spent a part of every day for 13 years talking to Laidlaw about writing. And the authors that inspired him like Frederic Brown and Robert Sheckley and crime writer Charles Willeford are all known for darkly comedic takes on genre fiction. Hell, he even named a character in ep2 after Sheckley.

Having the viewpoint character speak is mostly liberating. It certainly makes writing scenes easier when you don't have to write around the fact that the main character is mute. It's also easier to have the player feel they're actually an active participant in the scene. In portal we got around it a little by actually acknowledging the main character is mute. I think it's a lot more tricky when you have to maintain a fragile fiction that the player character can talk but simply isn't for some reason. Anyway, I was and still am happy that the main character speaks.
Tristan here, I admit I cannot deal with headcrabs in general, and definitely not in VR. If I'm testing the game, and I'm in an area where I know one of those things is around, I'll remove the head set and hold it off my face as I attempt navigate on the 2d monitor screen, to lessen the impact of headcrab discovery. Disappointingly for me, it seems that I'm the only one on the team who can't deal, we handle the scarier parts pretty well in terms of making the game accessible.

Horror is part of the franchise, and through playtesting, we feel like we've gained some confidence about where to draw this line. Some of our gorier visuals tend to evoke a grim fascination rather than revulsion or panic, and apart from myself, we've hardly ever seen anyone nope out of a playtest, even during the creepier sections. So among testers I still seem to be the outlier on horror tolerance.
Yes, Barnacles are a threat in VR. They don’t kill you instantly. You'll deal with them in familiar ways, but the opportunities afforded by VR also give you new methods to use against them. We experimented with moving the player, but moving the player without their input in VR didn't work very well. As with many aspects of working on this game, we’ve had to find new ways to take well-worn mechanics and other Half-Life staples into the specific framework of VR.

Similarly, Combine soldiers definitely return, both in the form you’ve previously seen them as well as with new variations to keep players busy and take advantage of VR.

Some creatures respond to audio more than others. We don’t want to spoil anything, but there’s an example of this we’re particularly excited about.

As with audio, limb dismemberment is not a factor in most combat encounters—but there is a very notable exception.

Because the game includes the ability to mantle in continuous motion, you don’t need often need to jump. For instance, if you need to get past an obstacle like a crate, you mantle up rather than jump up. The only time you need to jump is to traverse a short gap, which happens very rarely. We tried a few iterations of jumping, but ultimately found that even in continuous motion, players preferred dealing with those jumps with a teleport-style movement.
With the exception of some tweaks to the absolute final scene, the game is done. Lots of us at Valve, as well as playtesters, have played through the entire game multiple times.


Right now we're primarily polishing and fixing bugs, which is where we'd hope to be at this point in the development cycle. We're confident we'll hit our intended release. (We let the Valve Time happen before we announced the game.)
We worked with Merle at the beginning of HL:A development, but in the end, felt we wanted to go in a different direction. We love Merle, her work in Half-Life 2 was instrumental in bringing Alyx to life, and we hope to work with her again in the future.
We're not currently planning on shipping a full SDK. We'd really like to release one at some point, but it's a ton of work because Source 2 is a new toolset, much of which hasn't been previously released. Any time we spend on it now is also time we could be spending on polishing the game itself, which we think is more important. As a result, we thought it wasn't appropriate to promise anything before release.


Generally, this is how we've done SDKs in our previous Source 1 titles as well - making the game takes precedence, and after that's done, we start looking at what's next.
We will be doing subtitles at launch for ten total languages: English, French, German, Spanish-Spain, Japanese, Korean, Russian, Simplified Chinese, Spanish-Latin America, and Traditional Chinese. VO in other languages is something we're still considering.
Yes, it's our plan to release gameplay videos in the leadup to launch. Our intention is to use these to showcase not just gameplay elements, but also VR-specific elements like different movement options.
Our locomotion and comfort features are all done, including things like Seated, Left-Handed mode, etc. We have almost all our accessibility work done as well, but there's a little bit more we'd like to do there (support for one armed play, for instance).

We'll be talking about and showing more of our various locomotion options in some upcoming videos.

If you have questions about specific accessibility features you need, then feel free to reply here or send Gabe an email.
It's actually illegal to ship a Half-Life game if you don't spend at least a little time riding in a train.
Does Half-Life: Alyx use a dynamic soundtrack? Dave here (Sound Designer) - I'm unsure what you mean by 'dynamic soundtrack'. If you mean "Do the music and sound effects react or change in some way in regards to what's going on in-game?" then the answer is absolutely yes.
Thanks Super_Smol. We did answer the SDK question above.

We are huge fans of commentary and definitely plan on producing it for HL:A, but it’s unlikely that will have it in for launch day.
 
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Al3x1s

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Al3x1s

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Aaand it's (been, stupid downtime) here. Please be good.


Old gameplay vids for those who missed what it's like:
 
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Al3x1s

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Don't worry too much about the total score, this aggregator includes some pretty dubious sources.
I played a little bit of The Walking Dead: Saints & Sinners too. It seems pretty polished so far, almost everything just works generally. Opening doors, grabbing items to store or use, using melee and ranged weapons (though I think the gun holding angles need a little adjusting, they don't feel too far off the mark but they also don't really feel like you can instinctively pop them up and shoot as in games that get this aspect spot-on). There are not too many interactions beyond doors, usable items and enemies but it doesn't seem like anything is missing either, it just feels normal so far. I guess the closest non-VR game I can compare it to is Zombi but obviously it's far different, weapon durability and crafting seems much more critical, at least at this early point as you're basically using junk.

Still, I'll have to wait for the first feedback based patch to drop because apparently they didn't give enough thought in how they implemented the ability to play seated and standing alike. Rather than have it as an option it behaves as if seated play is enabled at all times and roughly forces the same player height regardless of your physical movement which means it's impossible to crouch physically to get under stuff (or behind cover potentially when that's called for), or whatever else you might instinctively try as you play only to have the whole game world warp further down to maintain the same height distance from your viewpoint. The only way to crouch is with the crouch toggle button (which then similarly maintains that height level, a level which might also be too low to feel natural itself as it stands) for now. I could understand if the stealth mode didn't kick in without the button but I don't even remember the last time I played a game that forced this behavior physically, if ever. Even games with seated play don't tend to force that, they just give a higher-than-your-seat height but still follow your movement if you slide down your chair or whatever rather than enforce this.

Other than that they could probably do a few other adjustments like your head angle affecting your leaning a little bit, to make it so your flashlight when left turned on but put on your chest pocket follows your gaze a little bit, it's kinda useless to have it on but not hold it in your hand atm. They'll probably have to adjust the inventory slot positioning when they allow more physical movements but they're already super reliable compared to certain other games. Grabbing weapons from your side slots or shoulder or storing stuff without first getting the inventory backpack out just works.

If the campaign is decently well done it will probably be considered one of the best VR games yet and deserves to do well, the jury's still out but it's promising. They already got a small patch out too.
 
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Al3x1s

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Yay, another small Saints & Sinners patch with an alpha version of the physical crouching which was surprisingly not possible to do before as I mentioned above!
Unrelated stuff:

 
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Al3x1s

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I tried Saints & Sinners again with that physical crouching deal you can enable with the latest patch (really the problem wasn't so much the crouching itself but that the warping occurred even if you just leaned a little further down the normal height to look at something closely and stuff) and damn, it feels really good.

I obviously can't know if the game and campaign structure is any good just yet, I've not even completed an area past the tutorial, but the atmosphere is great and the graphics clean even on the original Rift's low resolution, it shows the potential of a Resident Evil style slower paced zombie game in VR more than any other so hopefully the rest of it delivers. I also don't have any performance issues yet (unless I crank the supersampling). I just opened a door to find 3 zombies behind it, my first shot didn't kill the first, something went funky with my revolver or I just suck at shooting, so I noped out of the game, lol.

Contrary to Boneworks it's not trying to be a physics sandbox or whatever, it's a fairly traditionally designed and scripted game. The environments are mostly static and just there for the mood and to railroad you down whatever encounters but it doesn't feel wrong or anything, the atmosphere is spot on and there are random objects that do respond with physics, you can interact with or take most of it as loot turned into crafting materials at your home base thing but other than that they don't have any effect. There are also objects you can use as weapons like screwdrivers and knives as well as food or healing items.

The VR mechanics aren't fully physics driven either but most appear to work intuitively, I've not had problems yet. You can grab the zombies, they can grab you and you can shake them off, you can shove things in their brains as you hold them or just as they approach or if you manage to get behind them without being seen and so on (by the way, they've made it so you don't need to get super violent and fast or anything, mostly you just have to do a relatively wide arc and your strikes will have their full effect and easily pierce zombie skulls). The shooting seemed solid as in my last post even if I failed this session. The doors function easily too and you can vault onto things like cars or whatever and also climb designed for it objects like a drainage pipe I used to get in the house I noped out of earlier. Bandaging yourself is also neat and intuitive, it's easy to perform even around the original Touch controllers' ring.

The game does have a degree of arm presence and they do feel a bit off as they kind of slowly react to the positioning of the 1:1 hands but there has not been any instance of them actually getting in the way of gameplay or having unintended interactions, getting stuck in geometry or objects or anything.

It's really promising stuff. The very first zombie startled me as I was unsure of how easy they are to take down, I took care of it easily enough, then I was moving very carefully and taking them out quietly one by one as I reached them and just as I got confident that deal with the 3 zombies occurred, lol. I'm sure you get used to dealing with much more, especially after you get your hands on some decent weapons that won't break after a few kills, but yeah.

The one thing that miffed me so far is that there's a degree of respawning, I never like that. I could understand repopulating the area after you leave and come back another day for another mission or just to loot it but clearing an alley then finding it unsafe again when you go back doesn't feel right to me. Perhaps it works overall to make you feel under constant threat or whatever even after you get used to the zombies so they don't appear so scary any more but it also goes a bit against the weapon durability systems as they don't appear to drop items or anything (yet?) to make up for the resources lost to take them down. But again maybe it works out with the overall economy of the game and for the mood it wants to create, not just with you but also with the NPC factions and interactions they may have later in the game for you to observe or participate in. So, again, the core systems are great, the rest of the game, we'll see.
 
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Stitch

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Yes, zombies seem to respawn which is weird when you "cleaned" the house and a minute later you have zombies walking around the hallway. The devs really don't want to make it easy for the player. There's also a timelimit because you need to go back to your safehouse before nighttime. Also every time you start a new day the game will spawn more zombies and less resources. I'm on day 4 and already out of food lol
 
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Al3x1s

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Damn, that's hardcore. Maybe they'll adjust the rates a little bit after player feedback, heh :)

That said it's a small scale indie game all things considered (and the price is ace reflecting that) so it's understandable they tried to emphasize these aspects requiring a level of mastery to overcome challenges, otherwise you'd probably finish it in 6 hours rather than 12 or 15 or whatever it is now.

I like how melee weapons use resources like firearms do in a resident evil game, sure their fragility is exaggerated but then again you aren't fighting the literal World War Z-like (or L4D-like) hordes that a town would normally have either so yeah.

They could do with having a separate junk satchel (maybe one that goes in the backpack so anything you put in it takes space from the main backpack still) to throw in the bin for easy recycling of everything at once though.
 
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voidenberg

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I'll be visiting the USA next month and i was considering buying a VR. I'm inclined to buy the Oculus Rift S but i'm open to sugestion. The only issue is that the oculus rift uses display port and i think my pc only has one and it's already wired to my monitor.
I don't want to spend more than 500 dollars.
Another issue is that i have a disability. Are all games dependent on movement controls?
 

Al3x1s

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The Rift S is more than fine, nothing matches it in that budget. There are games that don't need you to perform actions physically but the better VR games that do that are less and less, most opt for motion controls. Even traditional looking 3rd person platform games like Moss have instances where you need to physically move your arms and hands to interact with the world and characters and objects. You can still play cockpit games like DiRT Rally and Elite Dangerous with the same controls you'd use out of VR, be it mouse and keyboard or gamepad or hotas or wheel or whatever, and maybe also invest in purchasing VorpX which converts non-VR games to VR without motion controls, just headtracking and the same controls they had out of VR, but I wouldn't buy into VR just for that personally. If you can't use any motion controls then a Rift S might not be beneficial to you over buying a cheaper Samsung Odyssey + or other high resolution Windows Mixed Reality kit either, its advantages in that price range are its tracking solution and tracked controllers. If however you can use your arms and hands and only have problems standing and performing body/leg maneuvers physically then you'll be fine in almost any VR game too (there is a tiny minority that requires physical movement without analog sticks but it's seen as a novelty for the most part, most developers opt for things like teleportation or analog stick based movement or whatever else as most people also naturally don't have VR play spaces that can match the size of even the smallest of game worlds), most games can be played seated using the analog stick to turn and buttons to crouch and what not, while still physically looking around and performing actions with your hands.
 
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voidenberg

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The Rift S is more than fine, nothing matches it in that budget. There are games that don't need you to perform actions physically but the better VR games that do that are less and less, most opt for motion controls. Even traditional looking 3rd person platform games like Moss have instances where you need to physically move your arms and hands to interact with the world and characters and objects. You can still play cockpit games like DiRT Rally and Elite Dangerous with the same controls you'd use out of VR, be it mouse and keyboard or gamepad or hotas or wheel or whatever, and maybe also invest in purchasing VorpX which converts non-VR games to VR without motion controls, just headtracking and the same controls they had out of VR, but I wouldn't buy into VR just for that personally. If you can't use any motion controls then a Rift S might not be beneficial to you over buying a cheaper Samsung Odyssey + or other high resolution Windows Mixed Reality kit either, its advantages in that price range are its tracking solution and tracked controllers. If however you can use your arms and hands and only have problems standing and performing body/leg maneuvers physically then you'll be fine in almost any VR game too (there is a tiny minority that requires physical movement without analog sticks but it's seen as a novelty for the most part, most developers opt for things like teleportation or analog stick based movement or whatever else as most people also naturally don't have VR play spaces that can match the size of even the smallest of game worlds), most games can be played seated using the analog stick to turn and buttons to crouch and what not, while still physically looking around and performing actions with your hands.
Thanks.

I have very limited mobility on my right arm. It sucks being cripled in real life and in game now. lol

Anyway, i was looking at the oculus quest. I see that it can be connected to pc with a usb cable.
 
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Al3x1s

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Yeah it's roughly equivalent to Rift S when linked to a PC but has lower hz screen and is not nearly as comfortable to wear. And you can use it stand alone for some games but even more of those are about motion controls since its gimmick is being untethered with more freedom of movement.

You'll want to look into the official specifics like currently supported graphics cards for linking it to a PC to ensure compatibility. Also, some games I wouldn't expect are playable with one hand still (but these articles aren't well thought out and contradict each other too a bit).
Add Pistol Whip to that short list and I'm sure many more adventure games but I wouldn't be able to guarantee which, you'd have to first get accustomed to VR, see what's possible for you to do, then ask in each game's forum for confirmation no actions need two handed manipulation.

SUPERHOT VR and Pistol Whip for example have fast action and shooting but other games with guns actually require you to use both hands to steady them and not have crazy recoil or reload them and stuff so it varies, games that look similar may work or not.

Of course your case isn't the same as these one hand specific dicsussions either, I imagine you could still use controller buttons with your right hand, maybe even wield a shield or similar relatively static object with a sword on your left, so that gives you more to work with.

There's also this thing to look into, an accessibility project, but I guess some work arounds still won't be suitable for fast action games. I'm not sure if it only works with Vive as shown.
 
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Al3x1s

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Maybe by the time this launches on Steam we'll have a nice VR mod to play it with :)
 
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