Half-Life 2 RTX’d

Greatest game gets even greater.

Jon Peddie

Nvidia RTX Remix, an upcoming modding platform on Nvidia Omniverse, empowers modders to create and share #RTXOn mods for classic games. These mods include improved materials, full ray tracing, Nvidia DLSS, Nvidia RTX IO, and Nvidia Reflex. A prime example is the high-fidelity Portal with RTX released by Nvidia, showcasing Remix’s capabilities. Community modders remastered Portal: Prelude using the tools, and now they’re collaborating under Orbifold Studios to create Half-Life 2 RTX: An RTX Remix Project. Leveraging Nvidia technologies, they’re enhancing materials, adding geometric detail, and implementing full ray tracing for an immersive experience. Details such as fabric weavings and intricate textures are significantly improved.

(Source: Nvidia)

What do we Think?  Modding has always been the next step for a serious gamer. Some games like Fallout 3 and 4 allowed in-game modding, and a big community grew up around the game. Typically, multiplayer and on-line games can’t be modded. Classics like Half-Life, Doom, Wolfenstein, and Black Mesa, which were highly appreciated games when new, are given a second life through modding. Adding real-time ray tracing with DLSS 3.0 locks Nvidia into the modding community and drives the players to Nvidia boards, so it makes total sense for the company to offer tools and support. From the early reveals, the game is going to be fabulous, and downloads will clog the Internet.

Half-Life 2 RTX: An RTX Remix Project is being built by the community

Nvidia is introducing Nvidia RTX Remix, an innovative modding platform built on the company’s Omniverse. Modders can use the platform to enhance classic games with features like enhanced materials, full ray tracing, Nvidia DLSS (deep learning super sampling), Nvidia RTX IO, and Nvidia Reflex. By utilizing these technologies, modders can elevate gaming experiences, creating immersive environments for players.

Portal with RTX was Nvidia’s initial demonstration of RTX Remix’s potential, reimagining Valve’s game. The tools were shared with modders, leading to the remastered Portal: Prelude, showcasing the collaborative and creative nature of the platform.

Now, Nvidia takes a step forward with the announcement of Half-Life 2 RTX: An RTX Remix Project. Four respected mod teams associated with Half-Life 2 are collaborating under Orbifold Studios. Utilizing the latest RTX Remix version, these modders are redesigning game materials through physically based rendering (PBR) principles. They’re adding intricate geometric details via Valve’s Hammer editor, enhancing realism. New technologies like full ray tracing, DLSS 3, Reflex, and RTX IO are seamlessly integrated to create an exceptional gaming experience exclusively for GeForce RTX users.

The revealed trailer for Half-Life 2 RTX: An RTX Remix Project provides a glimpse of the transformation. Inspired by the success of Portal projects, it promises an asset overhaul. Full ray tracing introduces heightened visual fidelity to Half-Life 2, with world textures having an eightfold pixel density increase. Crucial assets like the protagonist’s suit exhibit a twentyfold enhancement in geometric intricacy, showcasing elaborate fabric weavings and material interplay.

Nvidia’s venture into Nvidia RTX Remix marks a significant step for gaming enthusiasts, modders, and the gaming industry. By combining advanced technologies with modders’ creativity, Nvidia says it is opening a new era of gaming. The fusion of high-quality materials, comprehensive ray tracing, AI-powered super sampling, seamless data loading, and responsive gaming has the potential to redefine classic game interactions. This journey, says the company, has just begun, promising more captivating transformations in the gaming landscape.

(Source: Nvidia)

Every light source bounces around the scene and casts realistic shadows, making Kleiner’s lab feel like a real place. Orange vats cast light that illuminate dark corners in a vibrant glow, while the liquid inside refracts the entire world through it.

(Source: Nvidia)

Props are transformed with full ray tracing, like the magnification lens on Kleiner’s desk, which used shaders in 2004 to depict a low-resolution reflection of the world. Now, the magnifying glass contains a curved lens that realistically refracts light and bends every reflection, heightening immersion.

Want to make your own RTX Remix remaster? Join the community.

Nvidia says it will continue sharing early access versions of RTX Remix with select modders to further refine the creator tool kit and runtime. Sign up now to be notified of early access updates on the RTX Remix Page, and join the RTX Remix Discord server if you’re interested in collaborating with other modders using Remix to remaster classic games.