Former Valve designer Dario Casali recently began publishing a Half-Life walkthrough on his YouTube channel, providing behind-the-scenes insights into the beginning of the cult shooter’s development.
Half-Life was Valve’s first game. Casali joined the studio in November 1996, just a few months after its founding and beginning production of the future shooter. At this point it was called Quiver (quiver translated from English).
According to Casali, the most popular choices for Half-Life’s final name among members of the development team at the time were “Bent,” “Dirt,” “Lead,” “Pressure/Pressure Chamber/Pressure Pit,” and “Screwed.”
The developer also revealed header options that weren’t very popular among the team, but were still seen as potential:
- AX (Anthropomorphic Annihilation);
- core fracture;
- Cry.Sys / CrYsis / Crisis / Krisis;
- Stand out;
- Free radicals;
- The pit;
- The Silo;
- Unstable element.
As you can see, the list includes Fallout, Free Radical and variations of Crysis. There is no direct connection between Valve employees and the release of Fallout or Crysis or the founding of the Free Radical Design Studio.
The original Fallout came out in 1997 (a full year before Half-Life), but it wasn’t always called that. The game’s co-creator Tim Cain also recently revealed alternative titles for the post-apocalyptic RPG.
Casali decided to replay the first Half-Life in advance of its 25th anniversary. Valve’s cult shooter celebrates its anniversary on November 19th – on this day in 1998, the game hit the shelves of North American stores.