Earlier this year, a mod developer released Half-Life 1: Ray Traced. It added ray-tracing effects to Valve’s first Half-Life game. Today, NVIDIA announced it is working with a number of mod teams to release an unofficial remaster of the game’s sequel, Half-Life 2. It will be called Half-Life 2 RTX: An RTX Remix Project.
In a blog post, NVIDIA stated that mod developers from four different teams have combined forces to form a new team called Orbifold Studios. The team will be using NVIDIA’s RTX Remix that was made to remaster older Direct X 8 and 9 games with more recent graphical effects.
Using the latest version of RTX Remix, the modders are rebuilding materials with Physically Based Rendering (PBR) properties, adding extra geometric detail via Valve’s Hammer editor, and leveraging NVIDIA technologies including full ray tracing, DLSS 3, Reflex, and RTX IO to deliver a fantastic experience for GeForce RTX gamers.
The project is still in early development, but the teaser trailer for Half-Life 2 RTX certainly shows a lot of potential. Any modders who wish to participate in the project can sign up at the mod’s official website.
This news comes on the same day that NVIDIA announced DLSS 3.5, which has a feature called Ray Reconstruction that’s designed to boost ray tracing quality with machine learning. Today, NVIDIA announced that its Portal with RTX DLC mod that was released in 2022 will be getting an update later this fall that will add support for DLSS 3.5 and its Ray Reconstruction feature. NVIDIA stated:
With existing rendering techniques, full ray tracing could struggle to resolve multiple photons of light bouncing against thin materials, like metal fences, or highly reflective surfaces. This could cause excessive shimmering on thin surfaces and light instability or “boiling” on reflective walls. But with DLSS 3.5’s Ray Reconstruction technology, each fence appears stable no matter how much light is illuminating the thinnest of its meshes.
Support for DLSS 3.5 will also be added to the upcoming games Alan Wake 2 and Cyberpunk 2077: Phantom Liberty, along with the original Cyberpunk 2077 game. In addition, Call of Duty: Modern Warfare III and PayDay 3 will launch this fall with DLSS 3 and NVIDIA Reflex support, and Fortnite will add NVIDIA DLSS 3 support soon as well.