Valve president and co-founder Gabe Newell opens up about the studio’s future projects after being grilled by fans in a Reddit AMA.
From the outside looking in, it’s sometimes easy to forget that Valve made its name by creating great games, way before the Steam storefront became its primary concern. However, the company’s co-founder and president Gabe Newell has made some encouraging comments about its plans for the future during a Reddit AMA that took place yesterday.
First things first — Newell didn’t offer up any confirmation that Half-Life 3 was in the works, according to a report from VG247. When asked about the long-rumored title, his jokey response was simply that “the number 3 must not be said.”
However, he did respond in the affirmative when asked whether Valve had any “fully-fledged single player games” in development. Unfortunately, he didn’t elaborate as to what games were in development, or how long they had been in the works.
He did have some good news for fans of the Left 4 Dead series, following the purported evidence of a third instalment that was leaked last year. When asked about the future of the franchise, Newell wrote, “Left 4 Dead is a good place for creating shared narratives.”
While this isn’t exactly confirmation that a sequel is on its way, it certainly sounds like Valve isn’t finished with Left 4 Dead. It remains to be seen whether we’ll see a new game announced in the coming months — and whether it will follow up on the gameplay of its two predecessors, or take advantage of the company’s eagerness to experiment with virtual reality.
Newell did confirm that Valve has multiple VR projects in development, alongside its “knuckles” controller, which is designed to be use in conjunction with a headset. “The big thing right now is broadening the range of options we have in creating experiences,” he wrote. “We think investing in hardware will give us those options.”
While on the subject of forward-facing tech, Newell revealed that some Valve staff are researching machine learning and artificial intelligence. Meanwhile, he’s taken a personal interest in brain-computer interfaces, which would certainly be a quantum leap in the way we interact with video games.
Ultimately, Newell’s AMA focused on the bigger picture of what Valve is working on, rather than any specific projects. The studio remains one of the more innovative companies in the gaming industry, thanks to the enormous profits reaped via Steam — even if most of its recent projects seem to stay behind closed doors.