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Hands-On: Half-Life: Alyx's BioShock VR Campaign Might Just Be Its Best Mod Yet

Hands-On: Half-Life: Alyx's BioShock VR Campaign Might Just Be Its Best Mod Yet

Just over a year ago now we debuted a look at an incredible mod for Half-Life: Alyx called Return to Rapture, which brought the world of BioShock to VR by way of Valve’s hit.

Six months on, the mod expanded with an impressive campaign that brought elements of the iconic series into Alyx with an all-new story. And, within the next few months, Return to Rapture will grow yet again, this time into Alyx’s best mod by quite a wide margin.

Hands-On With Part 2 Of Half-Life: Alyx’s BioShock VR Campaign

Return To Rapture Part 2 has been in the works for months now, and we’ve seen developer Patient 8 games (which now has a sleek new website) make increasingly enticing promises about how much work it’s put into the project. Based on an early build of the campaign, the studio seems to be living up to its own hype.

The second part of the campaign — which sees Alyx herself explore Rapture — includes all-new weapons to wield, much more interactivity with assets from the original BioShock, and even Splicers to take on in combat amongst other surprises. Check out some gameplay of the upcoming mod above.

You’ll be getting the full experience with Return to Rapture – a multi-level campaign that strings together well-known environments from the underwater dystopia. Patient 8 has paid meticulous attention to detail, bringing many recognizable assets — and Rapture citizen’s penchant for making a mess — into VR. Environments are literally littered with items you’ll have seen in the original games but this time around there’s a much greater focus on making these elements interactive. Aside from the Combine and your starting weapons, there really aren’t too many elements from Alyx reused here.

It’s incredibly impressive to see different Splicer classes, for example, like ones that run at you with melee weapons and those that fire from afar. Plus the game retains the original Combine enemies to make for some really interesting combat encounters in which factions war for control of Rapture.

We’ve seen some great mods for Alyx in the past (here’s our list of the best) but this appears to be quite comfortably the most ambitious effort we’ve seen for the game so far. If what I’ve played is any indication, this will be worth re-installing Alyx for if you’ve long since forgotten about Valve’s fantastic adventure.

I asked the studio about release plans for the mod. This was their response: “Currently, Patient 8 Patreon members are beta testing prior to the full release which will happen around January 2022. If you would like to support Patient 8 in their future endeavors including their new project which is a PCVR space-based thriller/horror, please visit their Patreon.”

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