Box art - Half-Life: Alyx

Half-Life: Alyx system requirements and compatible VR headsets

After much waiting by fans the world over, Valve is finally delving back into the Half-Life universe. Its new game, dubbed Half-Life: Alyx, isn’t your typical first-person shooter, and it won’t just run on any PC. A prequel to the events of Half-Life 2, you’ll need to know the Half-Life: Alyx PC requirements to see if you can run Valve’s new game in March 2020. On top of that, you’ll have to have a compatible VR headset since this is a virtual reality experience. Once you nail down the Half-Life: Alex minimum specs and find a compatible headset, you should be ready to fight off the headcrabs and discover the secrets of Valve’s universe.

Half-Life: Alyx System Requirements | Minimum specifications

If you’re looking to play Half-Life: Alyx on your home gaming rig, you’re going to need a bit more power than what the average game requires in 2019. That’s partially due to the VR factor and partially due to Valve’s reputation as a leader in pushing tech to its limits. The company has released half of the Half-Life: Alyx system requirements at this time, so you’ll know what you need to get in the door.

First, you’ll need Windows 10 installed as your operating system. After that, your processor needs to be a Core i5-7500 or the Ryzen 5 1600. Whichever way you go there, you’ll need 12 GB of RAM onboard. Finally, the game requires either an Nvidia GTX 1060 or an AMD RX 580 with 6GB of VRAM. It’s quite a beefy setup even if you’re used to playing the latest and greatest from other publishers, although not necessarily top of the line if you’re used to the demands of virtual reality.

Here is a shortened listing of the current Half-Life: Alyx minimum specifications as specified on the game’s Steam store page:

  • OS: Windows 10
  • Processor: Core i5-7500 / Ryzen 5 1600
  • Memory: 12 GB RAM
  • Graphics: GTX 1060 / RX 580 – 6GB VRAM

Half-Life: Alyx System Requirements | Recommended specifications

If you’re looking at the minimum specifications and launching at the might of your rig, you might be more interested in Half-Life: Alyx‘s recommended specifications. This will be the rig you’ll need to get the absolute most out of the game in terms of frame rate and performance. While we can expect that the needs will be significantly higher than the Half-Life: Alyx minimum specifications, Valve has not released the exact system requirements to top out the game at this time. We’ll just have to keep checking in with Valve’s latest updates, which should come before the release date in March 2020.

Half-Life: Alyx System Requirements | Compatible VR Headsets

Since Half-Life: Alyx is a virtual reality experience, you also have to worry about which headset you’ll be strapping on before you get to play. Thankfully, Valve has made it pretty easy to enjoy their upcoming experience. While I’m sure they’d prefer that you use their own Valve Index to play the game, they support a wide range of other, perhaps more affordable VR headsets. You can use Valve’s previous darling, the HTC Vive, or anything from Oculus or the various companies putting out Windows Mixed Reality Gear.

Here is the full list of supported VR systems as posted on the Half-Life official website:

  • Valve Index
  • HTC Vive
  • Oculus Rift
  • Oculus Quest with PC and Link Cable
  • Windows Mixed Reality

Valve also notes on the Half-Life website that Half-Life: Alyx will support all manner of interaction with the game when it comes to virtual reality. Players can sit or stand in a stationary position to play the game, or take advantage of room-scale walking if they have the room. If you don’t, the game supports all three standard locomotion options, that being Teleport, Shift and joystick movement. You also don’t need to use Valve’s knuckle-wrapping Index controllers, although you’ll be left out of some interaction features with an older trigger-based model.