Half-Life Remake Black Mesa Hits Steam Early Access
The Early Access version of Black Mesa, billed as “85 percent complete”, is available for $20 through the online retailer. It features the majority of the single player campaign (minus the end-game Xen portion) and six multiplayer maps adapted from the original Half-Life. The two playable multiplayer modes available at the moment are deathmatch and team deathmatch. For those unfamiliar with the Black Mesa project, the power of the Half-Life 2 Source Engine means a beautiful new visual tour of all of the original game’s iconic locations.
Future versions of the project promise a complete single player campaign, with the final portion not just recreated but improved upon “to make it an enjoyable and memorable experience.” Several new multiplayer maps and modes are also promised for future iterations. The team declined to speculate on a time frame for a final release, though they did note that Black Mesa would allow for Steam workshop support, meaning user generated content will likely be available in abundance between releases.
Black Mesa began as a passion project almost a decade ago, with a playable version released initially in 2012. Though the developers have said in the past that a free version of the mod will be available alongside the paid version, the link for the free download has since disappeared from their page.
Along with improved visuals, the Early Access version boasts new voice over and various tweaks to improve stability and playability. The Early Access page promises further improvements, including polish for the portions of the game that take place on Earth. As fans themselves, the developers have a history of strong community interaction and promise to continue to integrate that feedback into their work.