Half Life Alex is the biggest thing to happen in VR in years.
You may think you need $1,000 VR headset to get started I'm gonna show you how to dive in for under $300.
Half Life Alex is important because from Valve it is the latest chapter in the long running Half Life video game saga.
People have been waiting for a new half line game for years and years.
Now they finally have one, but there's a catch.
The catch is it's VR only, so you need a high end gaming computer, and you also need a VR headset, which can be very expensive and very confusing because there are so many options out there now.
If you want the most premium experience possible with Half-Life: Alyx, well, Valve has their own VR headset.
It's the Valve Index, and it's about as high end as consumer VR gets right now.
If you get the actual headset and the two base stations that it needs, those are the cameras that look at you while you're playing and tell where you are in the room and the fancy hand controllers, that whole package together is going to run about $1,000.
That is a pretty premium price.
They do however, throw in the half life Alex game, so you say $60 on that, but you don't necessarily have to go with the top of the line.
You could certainly get something like the HTC Vive Pro, that is a little bit of a step down from the index in terms of overall hardware.
In terms of the controller design, it's still it's still pretty premium of a VR experience.
And if you get that entire package again, you need the headset You need the center boxes that you have to hang up on your walls you need the special controllers.
That's going to be about $900 right now, of course you can use an older HTC Vive or the original Oculus Rift or anything like that those costs about five or $600 when they came out You could sometimes get them at discounted prices now.
I think one of the most interesting ways to try to play Half-Life Alyx is to take one of our favorite headsets, which is the Oculus Quest.
Now that is a standalone headset does not require external sensors.
It comes with the hand controllers their own version of the hand controllers.
And normally the Oculus quest works as a self contained unit.
It has basically a smartphone chip inside And plays the games by itself, you don't hook it up to a computer.
That does not however, how you would use it with half life, Alex.
In that case, you would take a really long USBC cable and connect your Oculus quest headset from the back to your gaming computer and then it works just like a regular PC VR headset.
Now that gets you the advantage of having one of our favorite headsets, the quest and also being able to use it for PC games, and the quest starts at 399 which is a really good price considering it's one of the most universally useful virtual reality headsets that you can buy, and really just one of our all around favorites, but I have another trick where you get the price down even more a couple of years ago, every PC company on the planet.
Dell, HP, Acer, Samsung, they all started making what they called indows Mixed Reality Headset.
Those are basically virtual reality headsets, but they called them mixed reality because they thought it sounded fancier.
Everybody made them, they all cost a few hundred dollars, they came with pretty decent hand controllers.
None of them needed the external sensors.
They all had internal cameras that looked out and tracked where you were in the room.
And you could hook them up to your computer and use Microsoft VR hub to do some stuff, but you could also connect them to Steam and play regular Steam VR games like 'Half-Life: Alyx'.
So, if you want to do that, you can take one of these less expensive mixed reality headsets.
My favorite is probably the Samsung Odyssey, if you can find it around right now.
Most of these have been Discontinued but they still have some Microsoft stores and Amazon you can usually get it for about 299 and that includes the headset and the controllers.
You get one of those set up and you've got a pretty fully functional PC VR setup for under $300.
So if you want to play HalfLife Alex on your PC in VR don't want to spend a lot of money you could skip the thousand dollar valve index or the $900 HTC Vive Pro, get yourself a cheap windows mixed reality headset $300, you're good to go.
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