If you’ve always wanted to play Half-Life Alyx, but lacked either a VR set up or a PC powerful enough to do so, well, your day has come, as a new mod for the superlative Valve FPS game allows Alyx to be played without VR and via the handheld Steam Deck. It’s still not Half-Life 3, but for those of us who have always wanted to continue the journey of Gordon Freeman and co. without buying an expensive virtual reality rig, this is ideal.
Firstly, you’ll need a legitimate copy of Half-Life Alyx purchased through Steam. After that, the mod – aptly named Half-Life Alyx No VR – is extremely simple to install, and even allows you to customise the controls on a Steam Deck.
At the moment, it’s still in early access, with many updates, including the addition of secondary fire modes and the actual Half-Life Alyx UI, expected in the future. Nevertheless, as you can see in the footage below, it works fantastically, kind of like you’re playing Half-Life 2, but with all the missions, story, and style of Alyx.
Currently, you can play Alyx all the way up to chapter seven, with the rest of the game set to be made compatible with the mod in future updates.
Using the best VR headsets is still the strongest way to experience the most recent Half-Life game, but if prohibitive costs have kept you from Alyx up until now, or you just want to play it on the go, you can find the full mod alongside simple installation instructions right here.
Alternatively, check out some of the other best VR games, or the best Steam Deck games. You might also want to know whatever happened to Half-Life 3. It’s still coming. We still believe. But come on, Valve.