Virtual reality is supposed to give the illusion of being in an artificial yet believable world. Given today’s technologies, however, that doesn’t always look believable not just in graphics quality but also in how things move. Liquids are one of the hardest things to get right and Valve had a simple solution for those in Half-Life: Alyx that involved simply ignoring they even exist. The latest update, however, finally brings some semblance of reality and lets you play with all kinds of liquids that you might not even have access to in the real world.
Valve Visual Effects dev Matthew Wilde shared some short clips of the new liquid physics that Alyx is receiving in its latest update. For one, there will be actual wine inside those wine bottles that you can slosh around with realistic motions. Whether they’re drinkable virtually is a different question entirely.
It isn’t just wine-sloshing that’s impressive in this update, though. In addition to the realistic motion, the way different liquids look when light passes through them and their containers also lend to their credibility. It’s difficult enough to work with these materials in normal 3D games, getting them to look believable in VR is even harder.
Of course, that’s not the only thing that was added in update 1.4 of the game. The game now supports subtitles in Brazilian Portuguese, Czech, Hungarian, Italian, Polish, Portuguese, Ukrainian, and Vietnamese, for one. It also fixes a showstopping bug that could create bad save files.
There are also updates to Alyx’s Workshop that was just launched recently. Valve has now enabled the Postprocessing Editor to allow modders to create more effects and have added new content that players can examine and build upon for their own VR experiences.