This week Valve is making 3 big announcements about its future as a company. The first big announcement was Steam OS, an operating system allowing Steam to be played on the TV. And though gamers everywhere are talking about the possibility of Half Life 3 being announced, there are more concerns than anything.
Make no mistake, Valve make great games. Portal, Left 4 Dead and Dota 2 are just a few of the many amazing titles they have released. But none of these have had as long a development cycle as Half Life 3.
Half Life 3 has become almost a myth. The first two are considered to be in leagues with some of the best games of all time, and every PC fan has been looking for more ever since.
But that’s the issue right there.
Half Life is a product of an era in games long gone. The longer a company waits to bring back a franchise, the harder it will be for the company to make that franchise relevant again.
One recent example is Duke Nukem Forever. The title comes from a series in the 90’s that has been loved and adored by fans for years. It took 15 years for the game to finally be released, with much of the dialogue brought back from the 90’s. Unfortunately, the game didn’t hold up as well as it should have. It was from an era gone by, where toilet humor and sexist remarks were much more prevalent with the gaming community.
Another example is Too Human, which was supposed to be released for the Sony PlayStation in 1999. It ended up eventually being brought to Xbox 360, where it came out to mediocre reviews.
The same situation goes for Half Life. Many of the people anticipating Half Life 3 are from an era gone by. If you were to play Half Life 2 nowadays, you would notice all the problems it had. It was the product of an era. Great at its time, but outdated by today’s high standards.
If Half Life 3 wants to bring back relevance, it needs to follow the same formula as another game released recently: Diablo 3. The game was a title destined to be more of the same. Yet it added new things like an auction house, and updated mechanics that created a much more streamlined experience. Even it had some problems, including always-online for the PC version.
The modern day gaming generation is too far away from Half Life. It is a generation that is used to being hand-held. A generation that is focused more on a cinematic experience. Much of what made Half Life 1 and 2 great would be lost if Valve were to adopt this model.
So please, stop crying for Half Life 3. Enjoy the first two games for their time, because that time is long gone and should not be tampered with.