Half-Life Alyx mod

Half-Life: Alyx mod makes it playable start to finish without VR

Condense it back down to your monitors

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Half-Life: Alys is, by many accounts, a fantastic experience for virtual reality headset owners. But for those who haven’t had the chance yet or don’t have the means, there is also a mod that has now made Half-Life: Alyx playable from start to end, without VR.

The GB_2 Development Team has been steadily working on Half-Life: Alyx NoVR, a project with a simple goal: make Alyx playable without virtual reality. No need to install new drivers or anything like that; just drag, drop, and hit Play.

In an update published on April 9, the NoVR mod team confirms Half-Life: Alyx is now playable from start to finish, without a headset. Additionally, the Gravity Gloves and Combine fabricators are operational. The team also has an FAQ set up, with any additional info or details you could want.

Currently 33 of the 42 achievements on Steam are also earnable using NoVR. The other nine can’t be earned at the moment due to workarounds and issues with triggers, though the crew is working to get these running in the future.

More updates are on the way, and other Half-Life: Alyx mods are even somewhat compatible with NoVR. It’s pretty impressive.

Seeing the world a different way

You might wonder why, with Half-Life: Alyx standing as one of the titans of virtual reality, you’d want to play it without the tech it’s emphasizing. Well, as the GB_2 team points out, there’s a multitude of reasons. Maybe you have health concerns, like easily getting motion sick. Or maybe it’s an accessibiliy issue. Heck, maybe you just don’t want to play it in VR, or want to experience it outside of VR after having done so in VR.

It’s your choice, and though I think I’ll want my own Alyx playthrough to be in VR when it comes up on the backlog docket, I appreciate how much work has been put into this alternative option. You can find the mod and keep up with its updates here.


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Eric Van Allen
Senior Editor - While Eric's been writing about games since 2014, he's been playing them for a lot longer. Usually found grinding RPG battles, digging into an indie gem, or hanging out around the Limsa Aethryte.