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User Reviews

Still looks as fantastic as it was back in 1998 Katakis | カタキス (42449) 4.57 Stars4.57 Stars4.57 Stars4.57 Stars4.57 Stars
Pleased to make your acquaintance Mr. Half-Life, but haven't we met before? Zovni (10628) 4.14 Stars4.14 Stars4.14 Stars4.14 Stars4.14 Stars
We'll make an excellent team Ashley Pomeroy (233) 5 Stars5 Stars5 Stars5 Stars5 Stars
Best game ever? Not any more, but still damn fine Shazbut (167) unrated
An FPS that doesn't insult your intelligence MadCat (61) 4.8 Stars4.8 Stars4.8 Stars4.8 Stars4.8 Stars
Undoubtedly fantastic -- but why does it have to be impossible? Trixter (9116) 4.2 Stars4.2 Stars4.2 Stars4.2 Stars4.2 Stars
Indispensable FPS NeoJ (455) 3.57 Stars3.57 Stars3.57 Stars3.57 Stars3.57 Stars
Go take granddaddy down a peg lasttoblame (423) 3.83 Stars3.83 Stars3.83 Stars3.83 Stars3.83 Stars
The best PC game of all time. Period. Dragoon (107) 5 Stars5 Stars5 Stars5 Stars5 Stars
One of the best/worst games I've ever played. Ambivalent? Damn right. Tomer Gabel (4634) 4.2 Stars4.2 Stars4.2 Stars4.2 Stars4.2 Stars

Our Users Say

Category Description User Score
Acting The quality of the voice or video acting. 3.9
AI The quality of the game's intelligence, usually for the behavior of opponents. 4.1
Gameplay How well the game mechanics work and the game plays. 4.3
Graphics The visual quality of the game 4.1
Personal Slant A personal rating of the game, regardless of other attributes 4.2
Sound / Music The quality of the sound effects and/or music composition 4.0
Story / Presentation The main creative ideas in the game and how well they are executed. This rating is used for every game except compilations and special editions which don't have unique game content not available in a standalone game or DLC. 4.4
Overall User Score (455 votes) 4.2

Critic Reviews

MobyRanks are listed below. You can read here for more information about MobyRank.
There are so many twists and mysteries in the plot that you'll get completely involved and want to find out exactly what's going on. Half-Life is the most atmospheric game I've played for years, not only because of the storyline but also because the graphics and sound are so magnificent (in fact, I'd say that Half-Life has the best sound ever in a video game). But the one-player adventure isn't all there is to the game - the multiplayer modes are also brilliant, giving you plenty of reasons to keep playing. There's so much in Half-Life that you've just GOT to see for yourself, so please treat yourself to one of the best games for a very long time. And if you don't have a PC, you should seriously consider a £1,000 loan. Seriously.
Meristation (Jan 07, 1999)
Tenemos ante nosotros uno de los muchos títulos aparecidos recientemente que, como no, utilizan el ya superexplotado engine de Quake 2
The Retro Spirit (Dec 20, 2013)
Half-Life er og blir et av de beste spillet på uansett plattform, hvor fortellerglede og mystikk står i sentrum. Du finner det billig på Steam.
There’s really nothing more I can say without sounding like a broken record. Is Half-Life as good it could have been? No, it’s better. If you want an incredible 3D experience that will cause you to lose sleep, meals, PTA meetings, and romantic rendezvous, this is the game. And while some might argue that Half-Life deserves a less-than-perfect score, I disagree — the good in this game far outweighs the bad, and I’m convinced we’ve just witnessed a defining moment in the evolution of the first-person action genre. Hey, you couldn’t crouch in Quake, but that didn’t stop it from becoming the most popular multiplayer game in the history of gaming. Make no mistake — the release of Half-Life was a gaming event, as significant as the release of Quake 2 or Warcraft 2 before it. If there’s not a spot reserved for this baby in the Gaming Hall of Fame, it’s time we hang up our mice and rejoin the (gasp!) real world.
Just Games Retro (Oct 28, 2012)
In summary, Half-Life is succinctly described as The Towering Inferno: The Game. Technology advances finally let us see convincing moments of disaster film shlock, and I thought it was incredibly effective in Valve’s virtual world. While the shooting is competent, and the story is present, these aren’t the things that make the game memorable. I’d like to deduct points for the tedious Xen levels, the frequent barren rooms, or just to be “edgy,” but that really wouldn’t be fair. Plenty of games would ape Half-Life in the years to follow, but none quite hit that exciting combination of disaster film moments and focused storytelling. A welcome evolution to the genre.
Everything you’ve heard, everything you’ve hoped for—it’s all true. HALF-LIFE, Valve Software’s highly anticipated first-person shooter, is not just one of the best games of the year. It’s one of the best games of any year, an instant classic that is miles better than any of its immediate competition, and—in its single-player form—is the best shooter since the original DOOM. Plus, despite the fact that it’s “just” a shooter, HALF-LIFE provides one of the best examples eve of how to present an interactive movie—and a great, scary movie at that.
Spel för Alla (Nov, 1999)
Utan tvekan är Half-Life det snyggaste, bästa, intelligentaste och roligaste actionspelet just nu.
Since the release of the original Doom, gamers have been waiting for the next big step in the evolution of the first-person action game...and waiting, and waiting. Mercifully, the wait is over. The world of Half-Life is completely believable, the AI astonishing, and the action intense beyond belief. Combined, they create a totally seamless gaming experience. Needless to say, this is a must-have for anyone calling themselves a gamer.
Nerikes Allehanda (Mar 10, 2000)
Just när man trodde att 3D-genren var på väg att självdö släpper Valve och Sierra ett spel med gammal idé men stort nytänkande. Det finns en del knepiga pussel som måste lösas för att komma vidare och en del kräver också att du tar hjälp av karaktärer som du möter. Du kan få vakter att följa med en bit och hjälpa dig mot monstren eller knuffa in hjälplösa forskare först i rum som verkar misstänkta. Lägg där till att monstren minsann inte står och väntar på att bli skjutna. HL är kanske inte världens bästa spel, men definitivt den bästa 3D-shootern du kan få tag i nu.
GameGenie (1998)
wish I could tell you more, but I'm still speech less. From what I played this game is huge. I loved the fact that I didn't know what the hell was going on. Or who to trust, I was at the edge of my seat the whole time! The graphics were ahead of their time; the sound effects are cool. Save the Earth? Well, maybe. But that's a pretty low priority compared to saving your own skin.
Simply put, if you haven't played Half-Life yet, you're missing out on one of the greatest gaming achievements of our time. There's a reason why just about every gaming magazine in the world rated this one as 'Game of the Year,' you know. Get out and buy it now if you haven't already -- it's impossible not to fall in love with this game after playing it for five minutes.
Overall, Half-Life was a joy to play. The parts (which are pretty impressive in and of themselves) add up to a totally engrossing whole that creates the willing suspension of disbelief so important to good stories and good games. No doubt about it; this is the best first-person shooter to date.
Half-Life is, without a doubt, the most incredible game of its type available today. The environment is amazing, the AI is ruthless, and the story keeps you wanting to know what will happen next. I never thought I'd give five stars to a 3D action game without an automap, but everything about Half-Life is so well done that I just can't resist. Bottom Line: In a word - unbelievable. Half-Life is everything you've heard it was going to be and more. It's a game that actually lived up to the hype that it generated. Excellent graphics, sound, AI, and a story that will keep you playing just to find out what happens next.
Half-Life marks the start of a new generation of first-person games. It features a fully interactive environment that's a blast to play through. It's really like an interactive movie because it's so immersive. It's easily the most revolutionary shooter since System Shock. If you don't like action, move on. If you enjoy action games but want something deeper and more provocative, look no further than Half-Life.
GamePro (US) (Nov 24, 2000)
But really, that's a minor criticism made just because I felt I had to temper my gushing somewhat. The game's superb ending more than makes up for a couple levels of hopping around, and overall, Half-Life is an incredibly original masterpiece in a sea of FPS clones
It isn't everyday that you come across a game that totally revolutionizes an entire genre, but Half-Life has done just that. With its impressive and intricate world and texture design, downright scary monsters, settings and music, unsurpassed artificial intelligence and realism, this is a game that every PC owner should have. Half-Life is the real deal and the structure and design will be copied for years to come.
Overall, Half-Life is an astonishingly good game. It aims higher than any other first-person game and succeeds on every count, a feat made even more surprising when you consider it's developer Valve's first as a team. Taken as an overall package, it makes many of its competitors look sloppy and unfinished, like a Quake TC (total conversion) you'd download for free. It's easily the best first-person shooter since the original Doom, and quite simply the best action game of the year. Pity the poor developer that releases a like-minded product in its wake-what Valve has done is nothing less than raise the standard for what gamers should expect from an action game.
Game Revolution (Jan 01, 1999)
There have been obvious repetitions that have somehow worked their way permanently into the first person genre. Repetitive gameplay and a weak story seem to hinder almost every new game making their way into this supersaturated market. Now, here comes Half-Life, a game as hyped as Unreal or Quake II, but a few questions still remain. Does Half-Life stand up to its hype? Is there a need for it in this overcrowded and repetitive genre? Unquestionably, the answer to both questions is yes.
Freak (Nov, 1998)

משחק מומלץ ביותר בכל בית בעל מאיץ תלת מימד השווה כל אגורה שתשקיעו בו. לא רק לחובבי הז'אנר.

Gamezilla (Jan 12, 1999)
In case you haven’t yet heard, Half-Life is probably the best game of the year. It is, without a doubt, the best single-player first-person shooter ever. Period. It is so good for so many reasons. But most importantly, it is fun. I mean really fun. Realistic environments, challenging AI (but not overly so), stirring soundtrack, and a beautiful rendition of the Quake engine are only the frosting on the cake.
PC Gamer (Jan, 1999)
The only partial letdown is in the variety of friendly characters. There are only four variations of the scientist, and only one type of security guard. A few more faces or outfits would have been appreciated -- I suppose we’ll just have to wait for the sequel. But these are merely nitpicks. Yes, it’s a shooter. Yes, there are things to kill. But if Quake II is Starship Troopers, then Half-Life is the original Alien, combining incredible atmosphere, a strong storyline, and terrifying suspense to mind-boggling effect. Simply put, Half-Life is an unprecedented triumph of design, content, and execution. This is the missing link between the standard 3D shooter and the next level of gaming -- and, by far, the most significant action title since System Shock. Anyone in the industry who’s creating a 3D game should take a long, hard look at Half-Life; there will be a test in the months to come.
Half-Life is a game that needs to be experienced. It combines a balance of tense action, puzzle solving, story, and fun that has yet to be equaled on in the FPS arena.
Es difícil encontrar un juego tan variado, divertido y completo como este. Imprescindible en toda colección.
GamingExcellence (Oct 20, 2000)
Overall, Half-Life is one of the most enjoyable games released to this day, and the Half-Life saga will continue to get better over time. Everything in this game is perfect, including the excellent characters and graphics, and the realistic sound effects. Half-Life is not a game, it is an adventure.
Svenska PC Gamer (Nov, 1998)
Valve har lagt ner lika mycket omsorg på singelspelet som id har gjort på sitt multiplayer, vilket gör Half-Life ovanligt spännande och ofattbart fängslande.
Oldies Rising (Aug 06, 2008)
Le moins que l’on puisse dire c’est que Valve (société fondée, rappelons-le, par deux anciens de chez Microsoft) a frappé très fort en nous offrant ce FPS qui, de nos jours encore, demeure une référence. Alliant une ambiance digne d’un Resident Evil à un gameplay sans faille, il a l’énorme avantage de proposer un véritable scénario bourré de rebondissements, provoquant ainsi une immersion totale vous mettant réellement dans la peau de Gordon Freeman. Un jeu à acquérir A-B-S-O-L-U-M-E-N-T pour tous les heureux possesseurs d’un PC plus puissant qu’un Pentium (puisque le soft se permet même le luxe de tourner sur la plus modeste des machines !).
Absolute Games ( (Nov 23, 1998)
Подводя итог, хочется сказать вот о чем. 3D — action растет как жанр. Чем дальше — тем выше. После Half-Life создавать бессюжетные стрелялки станет, по-моему, некрасиво и невыгодно. Такая вот игра. Интересная. Качественная и, естественно, неоднозначная. Не убийца, конечно (как и SiN), но и не бедный родственник (сами знаете чей ;).
IGN (Nov 25, 1998)
You've got to hand it to these guys. Valve Software is a start-up, a relative unknown, with no track and, really, no business making such a mighty game. But mighty it is, the best single player shooter I've ever played.
Power Play (Nov, 1998)
„Half-Life“ ist für Solo-Spieler tatsächlich die ultimative Erfüllung. Alles, was man sich jemals in puncto Gameplay und Atmosphäre von einem Ego-Shooter erhofft hatte, sieht man nun in diesem phänomenalen Produkt verwirklicht. Die Handlungstiefe ist überwältigend, die Puzzledichte so enorm, daß sie auch für zwei Titel ausgereicht hätte, und die Interaktion mit freundlich gesonnenen NPCs, die einem Türen öffnen oder gegen gemeinsame Feinde beistehen, schlicht überragend. Das Abknallen der differenziert agierenden Gegner verkommt dabei zur Nebensache, man ist vielmehr damit beschäftigt, sich seinen Weg durch die zahlreichen Locations zu bahnen und die verschiedensten Aufgaben zu erfüllen, In diesem Genre besitzt „Unreal“ zwar immer noch die opulenteste Grafik, doch dies ist angesichts des atemberaubenden Gameplays und der vielen Ideen, mit denen „Half-Life“ aufwarten kann, belanglos. Hollywood hätte diesen filmreifen Actionthriller kaum besser in Szene setzen können.
Gameplay (Benelux) (Dec 31, 1998)
Zo kan ik nog wel even doorgaan, maar je kent mijn besluit al: kopen, kopen, kopen. Het 3D shooter genre is met Half-Life weer wat nieuw leven ingeblazen. Mooie graphics, bloedstollend geluid en last but not least: lekker griezelplezier!
94 (Sep 13, 2004)
Video game history will surely remember Half-Life as a game that dared to take evolutionary strides forward and revolutionize a genre that was in danger of uninspired saturation. Half-Life also proves that it's not impossible to produce a gaming experience that exemplifies ‘the whole package'. Jaw-dropping graphics and visual attention to detail, stunningly varied and accurate sound design, multi-faceted gameplay and an entertaining, engrossing and involving storyline - it's ALL there. Currently, there is no other game like Half-Life, but it won't be long before swarms of imitators rise from the FPS slagheap. So do yourself (and developer's Valve) a favor by securing the original experience before the also-rans sully its good name. Outstanding!
Game Over Online (Nov 21, 1998)
Overall Half-Life weighs in big. Solid graphics, a fresh plot and superbly implemented multiplay make this game the title to beat for Best Game of the Year bragging rights. Both new comers and members of the Doom Generation like myself will get plenty of thrills out of this new face in the FPS crowd. It's atmosphere and unique style have changed the face of PC gaming. I guarantee playing it for five minutes will make you think twice about calling Half-Life "another Quake clone."
Pelit (Dec, 1998)
"Älkää peljätkö, sillä katso, minä ilmoitan teille suuren ilon, joka on tuleva kaikelle pelikansalle: teille on syntynyt tänä päivänä 3D-räiskintöjen vapahtaja, joka on Half-Life, Valven ohjelmoima. Tämä on teille merkkinä: te löydätte sen pelikaupan hyllystä makaamasta." Ja yhtäkkiä ruudussa oli suuri joukko hallituksen erikoisjoukkoja.
GameSpot (Nov 20, 1998)
A major goal in any game is to create the illusion of reality, a fact that is especially true for first-person shooters. The whole point of the genre is to put you, literally, in the role of the protagonist. In light of this, it's surprising that so many games have stuck to a blueprint that breaks the illusion at every possible opportunity, with text-based mission briefings, jarring level transitions, and weapons and power-ups scattered around like decorative furniture. But Valve Software has obviously spent a lot of time studying the mistakes of the past. The result is Half-Life, the closest thing to a revolutionary step the genre has ever taken. Through a series of subtle and artistic design decisions, Half-Life creates a reality that is self-contained, believable, and thoroughly engaging. And while it may be surprising that no game has utilized any of these ideas in the past, it's clear that any future shooter will be remiss to overlook them.
Gamezone (Germany) (Apr 26, 2001)
Half Life stellt mit frischen Ideen, genialer Story und schöner Grafik das gesamte Genre auf den Kopf. Kein anderer Ego-Shooter hat so viele Preise und Ehrungen erhalten wie Half Life - zurecht wie wir meinen!
PC Joker (Nov, 1998)
Ganz persönlich hat mich Half-Life schlicht überwältigt: der erste Spiel-Film im eigentlichen Sinne des Wortes! Denn hier ergibt sich eine spannende Handlung in der Tat aus dem Spielverlauf selbst nicht aus aufgesetzten Zusatzszenen. Um so erfreulicher, daß kein Überrechner erforderlich ist, um dieses Erlebnisses teilhaftig zu werden - der Schritt in die neue Dimension des 3D-Gamings gelingt bereits mit einem P166 und einer Voodoo-Karte stolperfrei.
GameStar (Germany) (Nov, 1998)
Aus dem Programm hätte man fast zwei Top-Spiele machen können: Einmal ein packendes Action-Adventure mit gut aufgebauten Sprungeinlagen und Puzzles, zum anderen einen erstklassigen 3D-Shooter mit teils dramatischen Kämpfen. Wirklich geärgert hat mich nur eines: Daß ich in den späteren Levels ständig auf die gleichen drei Arten von Aliens treffe – warum verpaßten die Designer den Biestern nicht variable Texturen? Abgesehen vom Genre »3D-Action« haben Unreal und Half-Life wenig gemein und richten sich an unterschiedliche Zielgruppen. Unreal sieht besser aus, bietet noch aufregendere Kämpfe sowie eine leicht überlegene KI. Half-Life verbucht dafür die originelleren Ideen, eine spannendere Story und perfekteres Leveldesign. Ganz ehrlich: Auf neue Abenteuer als Gordon Freeman freue ich mich mehr.
You'll get a healthy does of weaponry such as grenades, RPG launcher, trip mines, pistols, M16's, some bizarre Alien weaponry, and more. But it's HLs brilliant story that the meat of the game. There are 3 official expansion sets out: TCF, Blue Shift, and Opposing Force. BS, and OP are in the same setting as it was in the original HL, but from different perspectives. Again, brilliant. From a Christian perspective, it's pretty good. But OP has a few swears in it. Sure there's blood and gore, but that's what a good FPS is all about. I can't find anything wrong with this game, except for when your mom sees you turn a harmless scientist into gib soup. And one more reason you should buy this game. The mod community. There are literally HUNDREDS of user-created mods out there. From a multiplayer mod, to a brand new single player mod. They all add more gaming fun. Such as Day Of Defeat, Azure Sheep, Case Closed, Firearms, Action HL, Opera mod, and more.
Vgames (Aug 11, 1999)

לסיכום, ובמשפט אחד, האף לייף הוא בפירוש אחד המשחקים הטובים בכל הזמנים, וקובע רמה חדשה של איכות, מצוינות, וחוויית משחק מושלמת. חבל על הזמן, רוצו לקנות !!!

Half-Life ist schöner, spannender, intelligenter und realistischer als alles bisher Dagewesene. Es zeigt, daß Unreal seinen Namen zu Recht trägt. Unter den zahllosen faszinierenden Punkten (coole Geschichte, extremer Detailreichtum et cetera) gebührtz der größte Respekt den Gegnern. Was letztere an Intelligenz unter digitalen Kopfhäuten tragen, ist schlichtweg unglaublich.
PC Games (Germany) (Nov, 1998)
Selten haben sich hinter der Fassade vermeintlich simpler 3D-Action so viele neuartige, abgründige und innovative Ideen verborgen. Half-Life ist erschreckend, faszinierend, fesselnd... schlichtweg umwerfend. Sicher – an die optische Brillanz eines Unreals reicht das Valve-Werk nicht heran, aber wo die Nali-Saga lediglich mit einer Handvoll interessanter Einfälle aufwarten konnte, präsentiert Half-Life Überraschungen am laufenden Band. Unreal scheint endlich einen würdigen Konkurrenten gefunden zu haben.
CD-Action (Jan, 1999)
Stawiam diagnozę: gra zasługuje na 9 punktów. Plusy: grafika i animacja, muzyka, wspaniały klimat, inteligencja przeciwników, naprawdę się boisz, wciągająca akcja, szybka identyfikacja z głównym bohaterem, Minusy: tak naprawdę to chyba nie ma w niej minusów, może poza wygórowanymi wymaganiami sprzętowymi.
... i na końcu już tylko tak siedzisz z rękami na kolanach i nie możesz już grać dalej, bo Ci się z tego wszystkiego kręci w głowie, musisz iść do ubikacji i jesteś okropnie głodny. Jednak później znowu wrócisz i złapiesz ster, bo jesteś już tylko pół-żywy. Jesteś HALF-LIFE.
Attack Games (Feb, 1999)
Hade Valve plockat bort hälften av knepigheterna och slängt in lite fler monster istället hade Half-Life tveklöst varit världens bästa 3D-actionspel. Nu får vi vänta med spänning på Half-Life 2 istället.
Edge (Nov 26, 1998)
Half-Life is a technical and artistic masterpiece. It delivers on so many levels that criticism seems churlish. Hardcore players could probably carve it up in a few days, but this is a game to be cherished. Wreathed in atmosphere, drenched with imagination, mined with surprise, Half-Life will devastate all who touch it.
Gamereactor (Denmark) (Dec 11, 1998)
For første gang i lange tider kommer der et 3D action spil som byder på en god historie.
Pro: Schockeffekte am laufenden Band; geniales Spielgefühl; enorm abwechslungsreich; viele Überraschungen; alles gut aufeinander abgestimmt; stilvoll; spannend; interessante Story; Umgebung wirkt glaubwürdig und lebendig
Contra: Waffenwechsel nicht optimal gelungen; Waffen dürften noch origineller, Gegner abwechslungsreicher sein; Engine kommt nicht an Unreal heran
Fazit: Half-Life ist der Geniestreich schlechthin bei den Actionspielen aus der Ich-Perspektive.
Power Unlimited (Nov, 1998)
Gebruikmakend van een gecombineerde Quake I & II egine en andere baanbrekende technolgie, is Half-Life vernieuwend genoeg om naam te maken in z'n genre en misschien wel als voorbeeld te dienen voor volgende games.
This is first-person shooting with a brain. It's easy to fall in love with something so smart and sophisticated.
90 (Oct 23, 1998)
Half-Life est un must absolu pour ceux qui aiment les doom-likes, et pourrait bien en donner le goût aux autres... Tout est presque parfait, cela fait longtemps qu'on attendait un tel jeu! A ne rater sous aucun prétexte.
Gamekult (Sep 18, 2000)
Half-Life réunit le meilleur des deux mondes : une aventure en solo inoubliable et un mode multijoueurs captivant. Avec son excellent suivi en ligne et sa jouabilité à toute épreuve, Half-Life s'impose clairement comme l'un des meilleurs jeux du genre.
90 (May 03, 2005)
On ne le répétera jamais assez, mais Half-Life a marqué l’histoire du jeu vidéo d’une grosse croix en or massif. Jusqu’alors, le genre si populaire du doom-like ne connaissait finalement que des successions de niveaux et de monstres tous plus navrants les uns que les autres avec le recul. Avec Half-Life, on a découvert le sens du mot « scénarisation ». Le jeu reste très pratiqué de nos jours, même s’il commence légèrement à dater, puisqu’il est sorti en décembre 1998. C’est qu’il est utilisé pour pratiquer l’un des passe-temps en réseau les plus prisés : Counter Strike. Mais il serait dommage de réduire HL au faire-valoir de CS.
games xtreme (Feb 18, 1999)
I have had this game since it first came out and I feel that only now can I give it the review it justly deserves.

You must remember that this was not supposed to be as good as it was, there was very little advertising and it was released on the Quake II engine which at the time was considered old-hat.
Half-Life voldoet op alle fronten aan de verwachting. Dat je een doezelige geleerde speelt die nog nooit een geweer van dichtbij heeft gezien, eerder dan een commando met opgeblazen spieren en een vierloopskanon, moet je er maar bij nemen.
Virtually everything in Half-Life has been seen before. The graphics are traditional fare, the weapons and enemies are shooter staples, and the game play has been done to death. Yet Half-Life molds everything together into a package that elevates it above its competition. By bringing about a complete experience, Half-Life creates an engrossing world you won’t want to leave.
Just RPG (Jan 07, 2005)
There are good games, great games…and then you have the ones that inspire awe – you know, the type you can’t mention without taking your hat off. Half-Life, I guess, comes in that last category.