Sixteen years in the making and it’s finally here. Black Mesa is a remake of the one and only Half-Life. It began as a Source mod in 2004 – actually two mods that were quickly merged into one which was then given the name Black Mesa: Source, which later became just Black Mesa.
For years, people doubted it would ever see the light of day, until a surprise release in 2012. This release was still a free modification, but of exceptional quality as our now outdated review explains. But it was not finished; the last five chapters set on the alien planet of Xen were not included in this release because the developers wanted to redesign them since they were almost universally disliked in Half-Life.
In 2015, Black Mesa went from being a mod to a commercial game, since this was pretty much the only way it was going to get full access to Source Engine 2013 features. It remained in Steam’s early access program for about 5 years until today when it was finally launched. Check out the launch trailer below.
Black Mesa has come an incredibly long way from its 2012 release. We can safely say the wait was indeed worth it. It is available only on Steam for both Windows and Linux.
It is also moddable and has a Steam Workshop, but be mindful of which mods you use since many are not compatible with this latest version. Some really appealing ones to use are The Definitive On a Rail (extending On a Rail to be more like Half-Life, which not everyone would prefer) and Particle Enhancement Project.