Half-Life mod ‘Echoes’ offers a new story set in Valve’s familiar universe


No matter how you look at it, it’s clear Half-Life is one of the top games ever made. This action game told a fascinating story about a science experiment gone wrong at research facility Black Mesa, while also offering exciting action and thrills too.

And given how popular the game still is today, it’s not surprising that user created mods are still being released for it. One of these is “Echoes”, a story mod which retells the familiar story of Half-Life through the eyes of another character known only as “Candidate 16”.

This is not the first time Half-Life’s story has been retold through the perspective of another character. Game creators Valve did this themselves back in 1999 with the Opposing Force expansion, which put you in the shoes of a marine sent to Black Mesa to deal with the extra-terrestrial threat within.

Although taking into account that almost 20 years have passed since Half-Life’s launched in late 1998, one thing Echoes has in its favour is that it will feature way more detailed maps than the original game did, as it has the benefit of running on PCs that people couldn’t even dream about back then.

Unlike the Black Mesa remake though, Echoes will be using the same graphics engine as the original Half-Life (named GoldSrc) and not the more recent Source Engine which powers the game’s sequel Half-Life 2.

Also, as video game website Rock Paper Shotgun points out, the Echoes mod is a difficult one to play through due to the scarcity of ammo and health pickups, so you have been warned, although early reviews have already called this a “masterpiece” which sure is encouraging…

The Echoes mod is available to download from the ModDB website here. Bear in mind, though, that Echoes has been designed with the Steam version of Half-Life in mind, meaning that it won’t work with an old retail copy or any other version of the game either.

Nonetheless, it’s still nice to see PC users pour this much effort and energy into a mod for Half-Life – proof of the game’s enduring power and gamer’s fascination with Valve’s classic title, and it would be a great thing if more high quality mods such as this one kept hitting the PC in the future.

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