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Half-Life: Alyx gets more than three hours of developer commentary

A new update to Half-Life: Alyx went out today that adds more than three hours of developer commentary covering "every aspect" of the game's design. Valve said that the design commentary was originally intended to be included with the game at launch, but it was forced to delay the feature by the COVID-19 outbreak.

The update adds 147 "points of interest" to Half-Life: Alyx, indicated by floating headsets, in which developers talk about aspects of the game including design, art, animation, rendering, and audio. To access them, just grab the headset and slap it on—it's a VR game, remember, so that's all there is to it. 

Take it off when you're done—also virtually—and the headset will return to its original location. The commentary is also subtitled in a multitude of languages, including French, German, Japanese, Korean, Castilian Spanish, Latin American Spanish, Russian, Polish, Traditional Chinese and Simplified Chinese.

You'll need to start a new game in order to access the commentary, and Valve strongly recommends that you finish the game completely before enabling the mode, as there are "significant spoilers." It also hinted that the audio level might not be as perfectly refined and even as you'd expect: "Like much of the world, we are all working from home, which means that rather than using our comfortable high-quality recording studio at the office, we have been recording our commentary voice overs in closets and blanket forts around greater Seattle."

The update also adds in-game localization for Danish, Dutch, Finnish, Greek, Norwegian, Romanian, Swedish, Thai and Turkish languages, and adds an option to change the way ladders behave, to make them "more realistic." Details are available on Steam.

Andy Chalk
Andy covers the day-to-day happenings in the big, wide world of PC gaming—the stuff we call "news." In his off hours, he wishes he had time to play the 80-hour RPGs and immersive sims he used to love so much.