Black Mesa’s final big patch is launching as a “free Definitive Edition update”

Late last month, Crowbar Collective announced Black Mesa: Definitive Edition – a new version of the group’s fan-built Half-Life remake, packed with even more changes and revamps. At that time the DE was launched into beta for players to try out – and now Crowbar has announced it’s “releasing our final big update to Black Mesa as a free ‘Definitive Edition’ update”.

“Since March, we have worked to polish the game in terms of both art and design,” the group announces on Steam, adding: “If you have been waiting to try Black Mesa, now is a great time to dive in.” Building on the finished edition of Black Mesa launched in spring this year, the DE adds a “massive polish” to it, along with updates to the FPS game’s art and visuals, a “complete lighting and gameplay pass” to the ‘Power Up’ chapter, a total redesign of the second ‘On a Rail’ map, and plenty more.

Additionally, the Black Mesa DE update introduces some performance tweaks that should make it easier for those with less powerful PC builds to get the game running smoothly, with “significant optimisations across the whole game that will improve performance on low to mid-range PCs”.

Crowbar notes that there are still a handful of known issues it’s looking into, such as controller support for Black Mesa’s main menu, the absence of a multiplayer model select for the new UI, and a rather curious one that means “female scientists unintentionally do not heal player”. Huh. The devs add that they’ll “continue to support the game to fix major bugs and the known issues”, so it looks like this final, free update won’t mean the final batch of tinkerings to the impressive remake.

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There are a whole lot of updates and tweaks to eyeball in the announcement detailing what’s changed since the devs’ last blog post, which you can check out in full right here. You can also take a peep at our rundown of the best new PC games if you’d like some pointers on what else is out there to try.