What order should I play the Half-life series in?

For one reason or another I managed to totally miss playing any of the Half-life series. I have the time and money now to play these games that I have heard such great things about. So what are all the Half-life games that I should play? and what order should I play them in?

I am confused of where the episodes and expansions all fit in. And what they mean by “Source” versions. Are these even part of the same series? And what about Blue Shift, Lost Coast, or Opposing Force? So many games, and I don’t know where or if they fit.

Are there any in the series that I should skip, or just read the plot summary for? Can someone please give me a run-down of what I should play, in order.


The must-play Half-Life games are Half-Life 1, then Half-Life 2. The expansions and spin-offs for Half-Life 1 which were not developed by Valve are quite skippable; Opposing Force, Blue Shift and Decay return to the setting and events of Half-Life 1, but portray the story through the eyes of a U.S. Marine, a security guard and two scientists (since Decay is a cooperative multiplayer game), respectively.

The Source version of Half-Life 1 is, and I quote:

a digitally remastered version of the critically acclaimed and best selling PC game

Needless to say it’s smoke and mirrors, there’s absolutely no significant difference between the two.

My advice is to play the original Half-Life 1, then Half-Life 2, and if you’d like to extend the pleasure, sequels Episode 1 and Episode 2 for Half-Life 2 are quite good, but not as good as the two main games.

Source : Link , Question Author : Adam Harte , Answer Author : Nicolas Bazire

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