A math teacher used Half-Life: Alyx to write and record lessons

Players are having quite a bit of fun with the advanced VR physics of Half-Life: Alyx, but at least one player used its markers to draw out a lesson for math class.


Half-Life: Alyx is, by many accounts, an amazing achievement for both the Half-Life franchise and VR in general. The game has incredible physics and interactivity throughout and many are discovering fun ways to use it beyond just playing through Half-Life: Alyx. One such player was a teacher who used Half-Life: Alyx’s marker drawing feature to draw out an entire math lesson on angles.

Posted over on Reddit on March 24, 2020, someone discovered a series of gifs that showed off someone using the marker mechanics in Half-Life: Alyx for a purpose other than playing the game. In fact, there’s a whole lesson from the YouTube of Charles Coomber, a math teacher who saw an opportunity for some learning in the game during a home study week. Many have used the marker features of Half-Life: Alyx to do fun and/or slightly more crass activities. Coomber used a recorded session of Half-Life: Alyx to introduce students to the vocabulary of mathematical angles. You can check out the whole lesson just below.

When you put both a game as advanced as Half-Life: Alyx, a quarantine from the COVID-19 pandemic, and educational passion together, it would appear that wonderful things can come from it. It certainly helps that Half-Life: Alyx has become a benchmark for what VR can do (and is just all-around good if you check our Shacknews review), but this is just one example of what players can do with what Half-Life: Alyx is capable of. The internet has been awash with folks showing off how you can play billiards in the game, make dead head crabs dance, or other interesting mechanical pursuits, but Coomber’s was certainly an unexpected and interesting consequence of the times.

That said, we respect and appreciate it. Lord knows many of us would have paid more attention in math classes if they were presented through the lens of a great VR game. Be sure to check out our other coverage on Half-Life: Alyx as well for more interesting details on Valve’s newest title.

Senior News Editor

TJ Denzer is a player and writer with a passion for games that has dominated a lifetime. He found his way to the Shacknews roster in late 2019 and has worked his way to Senior News Editor since. Between news coverage, he also aides notably in livestream projects like the indie game-focused Indie-licious, the Shacknews Stimulus Games, and the Shacknews Dump. You can reach him at tj.denzer@shacknews.com and also find him on Twitter @JohnnyChugs.

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