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Black Mesa

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Description official description

Black Mesa is a fan-made re-imagining of the original Half-Life game. It is a continuation of Black Mesa, the earlier 2012 version now referred to as the Legacy release of the game, which is no longer updated. This edition continues builds on the work of the previous version, but was re-released into Steam's Early Access program along with content updates such as Surface Tension: UNCUT that were never part of the initial version.

The original Half-Life has been completely overhauled and updated from the ground up. Many elements were updated, the voice acting, visuals and gameplay was updated. The levels were kept as close as possible to the original, with elements updated. The Xen dimension from the original game has not been updated as of 2016-05-05, with the development team indicating this will be an addition that will come free once they complete it.

The game follows Gordon Freeman as he escapes the Black Mesa Research Facility following a failed experiment with an alien material. This takes him through various areas of the facility fighting various aliens and military personnel.

The game supports various Steam functions such as achievements, trading cards, workshop, and the cloud. It also includes the Source SDK and an internal level editor.

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Credits (Windows version)

97 People (88 developers, 9 thanks) · View all



Average score: 86% (based on 16 ratings)


Average score: 3.8 out of 5 (based on 11 ratings with 1 reviews)

Blast of the past

The Good
Black Mesa enhances almost every aspect of the original Half-Life game, not just the graphics. Every major thing Valve intended to do in Half-Life but couldn't because of technical limitations is done in this game and it really shines because of it. I especially enjoy how some details in the original game that I was only able to catch up after watching videos about it were shown much clearer in Black Mesa.

In my opinion the largest improvement from the original is the music. While Half-Life had some cool songs, I never saw myself listening to them a lot outside of the game with the exception of the badass heavy rock ones. Black Mesa's soundtrack, though, shines EVERYWHERE. Fear, calmness, tension, relief, it's almost as if the music conveys the emotions of Dr. Freeman himself.

The Bad
The game has a few annoying bugs. One of which completely stopped my progress and I had to load the last save. Quicksaving also sometimes glitches out creating useless corrupted loads.

There is a bit of inconsistency in some of the graphics, as many assets are taken from Half-Life 2 and others are new, combining models and textures from 2015 with ones from 2004. Surprisingly, most of them blend together pretty well, but at some specific situations (particularly the very last cutscene) are pretty jarring because of it. Unfortunately, a few details from the original game are also lost in this remake, but they are so minor that most players will likely not notice them.

The Bottom Line
Absolutely a banger game and I highly recommend it for both people who never played Half-Life and those who did. Just remember to save twice in a row in case your load gets corrupted.

Windows · by Minhoca (1418) · 2022

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Contributors to this Entry

Game added by Jake AM.

Linux added by Sciere.

Game added May 28th, 2016. Last modified April 27th, 2023.