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Half-Life: Alyx gets a Linux release, level editing tools, Vulkan support, and more

Today, Valve released a major Half-Life: Alyx update that delivers quite a few new features like modding tools, the Vulkan graphics API, and more. The game is now playable on Linux natively too, removing the need for Proton.

Possibly the biggest new additions are the level editing tools, with Valve giving the community access to a suite of powerful tools to make their own "levels, models, textures, and animations for Half-Life: Alyx". It is still a beta release, but provides the following tools for interested modders:

  • Hammer, the latest version of the Source 2 level editor.
  • Material Editor, the tool for creating and tuning materials in Source 2.
  • ModelDoc, a tool for viewing, editing, and compiling models with animation, collision, and other gameplay attributes.
  • AnimGraph, our animation tool used to create complicated animation setups with blends and transitions.
  • Particle Editor, for making new particle effects.
  • Subrect Editor, for creating smart texture sheets known as "hotspots."
  • Source Filmmaker, the Source 2 cinematic renderer and animation tool.

In addition, Steam Workshop support has arrived to the game as well, giving those who want to experience community-made modifications an easy way to find and install them with just one click.

The new Linux version of Half-Life: Alyx uses the Vulkan rendering API. Valve says "AMD graphics and the Mesa RADV driver are recommended for best results" on the platform, and if Proton was used previously, users are recommended to uncheck the "Force the use of a specific Steam Play compatibility tool" box in the Alyx properties menu.

The Vulkan API is also available as an optional renderer on Windows, which can be toggled through the in-game options menu in the Performance > Advanced section.

The update weighs in at 2.8GB on Steam, and also brings in some changes to the spectator view as well as bug fixes. Catch the full blog post about the Workshop Update here.

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