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Half-Life Fans Are Going Wild Over This Leak

Once upon a time, the "Half-Life" series was critically acclaimed and beloved in all of gaming. Developed by Valve, "Half-Life" featured four mainline games that followed humanity as they wish to liberate Earth from malevolent alien forces known colloquially as "The Combine." The games were all bonafide hits and the series as a whole was at the forefront of innovative first-person shooters within a single-player framework. Unfortunately, the series' momentum would die a sudden death.

Following the release of "Half-Life 2: Episode Two" in 2007, the series quietly disappeared from the mainstream and was left dormant for over a decade. Until the release of VR shooter "Half-Life: Alyx" in early 2020, the team at Valve struggled to conceptualize a future for the series with many planned sequels to "Half-Life 2" and its subsequent episodes being canceled during development due to creative differences and struggles with management (via Kotaku Australia). The future of the franchise became so rife with speculation and uncertainty, that the possibility of "Half-life 3" became a meme.

However, one independent journalist seems to have uncovered huge clues as they pertain to the series' future beyond "Alyx." 

A recent datamine has revealed four announced titles from Valve

Recently, Valve released "Aperture Desk Job" for the new Steam Deck. Serving as a tech demo for Valve's foray into the handheld-console hybrid market pioneered by the Nintendo Switch, "Aperture Desk Job" is little more than a demonstration of how the controls on the Steam Deck are supposed to function. However, one YouTuber was able to datamine the game and find clues that point to four unannounced titles that Valve is supposedly developing.

Calling it "the most fruitful datamine I have ever experienced as a journalist," content creator and dataminer Tyler McVicker recently uploaded a video to YouTube showcasing his findings within the code of "Aperture Desk Job" that points to a litany of Valve titles that have been kept in the dark. These titles include "Citadel," the alleged codename for the next "Half-Life" project, a follow-up to "Half-Life: Alyx," as well as "some kind of follow up to Counter-Strike: Global Offensive's Source 2 port, and a recreation of the previously cancelled Portal paint game." In the description of his video, McVicker posted links to four Google Docs that contained code he mined from "Aperture Desk Job" as proof of his findings.

Fans are going wild over the news

As with any news that pertains to the future of the "Half-Life" franchise, fans of the series have already begun to dissect and discuss McVicker's findings and have wondered if they have any merit, with the original video garnering almost 100k views within 24 hours and posts on the subreddit coming fast and furious. Still weary from the over-abundance of false leads in regards to the news of "Half-Life 3" before the release of "Alyx" in 2020, it seems that many have approached this recent development with quite a bit of skepticism and cautiousness in regards to how informative the McVicker's datamine really is.

"Knowing how Valve works, I would bet that they have more canceled and unannounced games than any studio has releases," Reddit user u/SekhWork said in response to McVicker's video. "This is a non-story." Some have even questioned McVicker's credibility. "This dude can't be trusted as a leaker," u/Lasolie said. "[T]he dude is a superfan who's obsessed with Valve and at least concerning CS:GO, he has never had accurate information [as far as I can tell]."

Only time will tell if these findings are indicative of new releases from Valve, but some news is better than no news in the "Half-Life" fandom.