We still have a couple of months to go before Half-Life: Alyx comes out, so now is as good a time as any to revisit the older adventures of Gordon Freeman. To celebrate the Lunar New Year, the Crowbar Collective has detailed Black Mesa 1.0 and its upcoming changes, adding additional polish for the full release after launching the ‘complete beta' in December.
At this point, Black Mesa is entirely playable from beginning to end with no missing content. However, the game is still in early access while the final changes for 1.0 are tested via the beta branch on Steam. In version 1.0, you can expect a complete AI overhaul, with smarter, more communicative enemy soldiers. The in-game art has also been evaluated, so some sections of Earth and Xen levels will look notably improved in an effort to bring Half-Life 1 up to modern graphical standards.
These updates should be pushed to the Black Mesa beta branch fairly soon, with a 1.0 release coming in very shortly after. The work doesn't end with this release version though, as the developers have also mentioned version 1.5, which they jokingly refer to as ‘Black Mesa: Definitive Edition'.
With this future update, which will arrive well after launch, the studio will be combing through the game once again to identify rough spots, polish up the graphics in a few more areas and improve Steam Workshop support for community mods.
More details are due to come in the next few weeks, so expect another important update very soon.
KitGuru Says: I've had Black Mesa on Steam since it first launched on Early Access, so I'm looking forward to finally checking out the release version. Have any of you been playing this recently? Are there any areas of the game you would like to see improved?