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A beta for Black Mesa’s Xen chapters is “imminent”

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Black Mesa, a fan-made Half-Life mod years in the making, is finally nearing completion. According to an IGN preview, the final section of the project, Xen, is set to release very soon.

Much of Black Mesa has been available in early access on Steam for several years, but Xen – widely considered to be the least successful part of the otherwise game-changing Half-Life – has been notably absent. Now, according to IGN, a beta for the final three chapters of the game “is due for an imminent public release.”

A post from last year suggests that the Black Mesa team is running a little behind schedule. Back in November, a trailer for the final section of the game was released, alongside news that the game would release on Steam “in Q2 2019.” With a beta around the corner (although there’s no release date just yet), we might end up a little way beyond that, but given we’ve been waiting years for this, another few weeks shouldn’t be too big an issue.

IGN’s preview suggests that the beta will be primarily made up of exploration gameplay and jumping puzzles, but also gives the entire project a fresh coat of paint. Gameplay previews (which you can check out at the link above) show off a world far more colourful than some of the rest of Half-Life.

Black Mesa first released into early access in 2015, but the team behind the mod has been working on it since 2012. They’ve repeatedly proclaimed that the game will release in 2019, so their fully-polished take on Half-Life should be in your hands in the not too-distant future.

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