Half-Life Launches 25th Anniversary Documentary & Major Update Adding New Multiplayer Maps, Steam Deck Verification & More

Valve has announced that their classic sci-fi FPS Half-Life is now Steam Deck verified. This means that alongside simply being functional, the title will immediately work when launched on the device, is optimized, and requires no additional steps or configuration.

Additionally, the company posted a roughly hour-long 25th-anniversary documentary for Half-Life, in which the team discusses the memories behind crafting this legendary title.

Lastly, the original Half-Life has been updated with a vast plethora of improvements and content, quoted below:


Originally released as a CD exclusive for magazines and hardware manufacturers, this mini-campaign was built by the Half-Life team right after the game went gold. As this was many people’s first experience with Half-Life, we thought it was finally time to bundle it with the main game—no sound card purchase necessary.


Built by Valve level designers, these new maps push the limits of what’s possible in the Half-Life engine.

  • CONTAMINATION – Two-foot-thick steel doors block off access to this contaminated waste facility, which has questionable scientific goals at best. Strap on a gluon gun and roast all intruders.
  • POOL PARTY – Enjoy a relaxing stay at this abandoned Xen outpost built around a cluster of soothing healing pools free-floating in space. How do you breathe here? It doesn’t matter!
  • DISPOSAL – Processing Area 3, a massive radioactive waste plant gone quiet. Tons of room for you and your colleagues to do experiments with a Tau Cannon or some hand grenades.
  • ROCKET FRENZY – The creaking weight of this decaying orbital satellite launch facility somehow feels familiar… If we could switch on the oxygen lines, power, and fuel, we might just be able to light this candle.

Play the game the way it looked in 1998, but on a modern monitor.

  • Widescreen field of view!
  • Option to disable texture smoothing on the GL renderer!
  • Lighting fixes including the long-lost GL Overbright support!
  • Software rendering on Linux! Crisp colors, animated water, and unfiltered textures!
  • A proper gamepad config out of the box!
  • Added support for Steam Networking! Invite your friends or join games instantly with no fuss.

There are also plenty of other updates to peruse if you’re curious via the official Half-Life website.

The original Half-Life is also now available to obtain for free via Steam until next week.

Half-Life follows protagonist Gordon Freeman, aiming to escape the Black Mesa Research Facility after a scientific experiment causes aliens to run amok. The game was beloved for its storytelling and inventive gameplay during its initial launch in 1998.

Puzzle progression was also a prominent facet of the experience, alongside some boss battles that made the title stand out from its contemporaries. Half-Life is well known for its modding scene and consistent yearning for a third mainline entry.

You can view the Half-Life 25th anniversary documentary below:

This post may contain Amazon affiliate links. As an Amazon Associate Noisy Pixel earns from qualifying purchases.

Orpheus Joshua

Random gamer equally confused by the mainstream and the unusual.