Half Life 2: Episode Three hits its sixth anniversary

Thursday, 24th May 2012 07:53 GMT By Alex Donaldson

Today marks the six-year anniversary of Half Life 2: Episode 3 being announced by Valve – but the elusive game still remains largely an unknown.

On May 24th 2006 Valve confirmed that Half Life 2: Episode One had gone gold, slapped a release date on Episode Two and announced the existence of Episode Three.

The original announcement slated Episode Three for a now rather generous-seeming 2007 launch and promised that the Half Life episodic trilogy would “conclude by Christmas of 2007.”

Episode One shipped on June 1st 2006 as planned while at the time Episode Two was intended to ship before the end of 2006. The second episode would in the end be delayed by around a year, eventually launching in October 2007 as part of The Orange Box alongside Team Fortress 2 and Portal.

Valve PR head Doug Lombardi said the company might show something on the game “at the very end of the year” back in 2008, but since then all has been quiet but for a long stream of internet rumours and vague hints and reassurances from Valve.

Last month Valve boss Gabe Newell spoke about the development of “Ricochet 2″ – largely believed to be him talking about either Episode Three or a full-blown Half Life 3. “In terms of Ricochet 2, we always have this problem that when we talk about things too far in advance,” he said.

Don’t go expecting news on the game at E3 – Lombardi told Joystiq that the company will be making “no product announcements” at this year’s show earlier this month – and Valve has no press-facing booth or meeting room space there.

Half Life isn’t the only series to experience this recently – Square Enix’s Final Fantasy Versus XIII also passed its six year announcement anniversary earlier this month. Information on that game and its potential release also remains scant.

Which will release first? The waiting game continues.



  1. Ali Hayas

    They will announce it when you stop writing about it. This is their way of 00$ marketing…

    #1 3 years ago
  2. Lacobus

    God I wish this game would just come out. Yeah Portal 2 was excellent and the Left 4 Deads were pretty good multiplayer games, but I’m jonesin’ soooo badly for this or just HL3.

    Even some simple INFO would be appreciated. Is it outright cancelled? Has it been left by the wayside to focus on newer things but may be picked up later down the line? Has it been constantly developed, but slowly, like that book idea that gets looked at every six months? Is it EVER ACTUALLY GOING TO COME OUT?

    I’d rather a good game in 2025 than a rushed one of course, but its the not even knowing if it’s on anymore thats so maddening.

    #2 3 years ago
  3. Mr Tom

    Actually, I’d be up for Ricochet 2. Make it happen!

    #3 3 years ago
  4. Stoopid_Snot

    HL2:EP3 is becoming the new Big Foot, everybody is talking about it, nobody really seen it.

    #4 3 years ago
  5. mojo

    i still habent played ep 1 and 2.
    waiting for 3 to play them alltogether, but, well… yeah.. seems i wount play them at all then :(

    #5 3 years ago
  6. n3a

    By the time it comes out it won’t matter anymore, everyone who played ep1 and 2 will have families and children to attend to…

    #6 3 years ago
  7. Fin

    Man that call for information really worked, didn’t it?


    #7 3 years ago
  8. pukem0n

    somewhere in a dark room gabe newell is laughing his ass off while reading all the half life news while they propably arent even developing it right now :D

    #8 3 years ago
  9. Clupula

    Much like FF Versus XIII and Last Guardian, whenever it comes out, it comes out. As long as it isn’t a complete outdated disaster like Duke Nukem Forever, I’m sure we’ll all be raving about how good it is, if and when it releases.

    #9 3 years ago
  10. Ireland Michael

    You would think four years of no new information would be enough of hint for most people…

    Episode 3 is not going to happen. When it does, it will be Half Life 3. And when it finally *is* announced, the anticipation from the fanbase is going to be so big that the reaction is going to be absolutely huge. And Valve knows this.

    Announcing games early doesn’t help anything. This is why every new Call of Duty game is announced only mere months before launch. The less time before announcement and release, the more likely you are to hold people’s attention for your product.

    #10 3 years ago
  11. Dinasis

    @9: I was wondering how many comments in Duke Nukem Forever would come up.

    @10: I have no doubt it’ll be big, but not Diablo 3 big, sales-wise. I think it’s more likely to in some significant way be a victim of its own hype. Like Duke Nukem Forever, Kingdoms of Amalur, or Facebook’s IPO.

    Also, I think the other side of small windows between announcement and release is to get impulse buys and pre-orders before people have the chance to classify the product as a want, need, or wishlist item for later. See: numerous Apple announcements.

    #11 3 years ago
  12. DSB

    They should really take their time, and they’re going to. I recently got into CS:GO, and man, what a blast from the past. It’s no coincidence that Valve has two of the best multiplayer shooters under their roof.

    Perhaps the most shocking thing is that I don’t totally suck at it. I reckon it’s down to the fact that a lot of the beta guys are rusty as well, but I’m totally blown away by how much fun I’m having.

    @10 QFT Mr Ireland Michael.

    @11 I guess it depends on a lot of things. Diablo III was also supported by a heavy PR campaign, and while Valve will do advertising, I’m not sure they’d be willing to apply the same kind of machinery in doing it.

    Portal 2 sold just about 4 million in a year. I reckon Half-Life 3 would top that without even trying. Just look at the response it gets with every red herring. People are gonna riot once it does come out.

    #12 3 years ago
  13. Ireland Michael

    @11 Except that one of those games was godawfully bad, and the other was an untested franchise in a niche that wasn’t even looking to be filled.

    This is one of the most recognize franchises in gaming, made by one of the most famous developers in the industry. Their games are not exactly unpopular, and the company has a solid reputation for quality. It will be ready when it’s ready, and when it is finally announced, gamers will be all over it like rabid wolves look for a bone to chew on.

    There’s about as much chance of this not selling like hotcakes as there is a Call of Duty game not.

    #13 3 years ago
  14. Pulsified

    The Half-life series was no doubt the best series I’ve ever played. it was revolutionary, and merited game of the year with each major installment. I and I’m sure many other people have been waiting just as many years as the next guy for the next installment, and in the meantime we’ve had to bear witnessing Valve not only not uttering a peep about the series that changed gaming for us, but also in the meantime, watching from the sidelines as Portal 1 and 2 was released alongside left 4 dead installment[s] and in such. We were still patient. 6 years now I’ve been reminded of my waiting game and I am sad to say I am done. You may call it a “marketing technique” but I have better term for it, cruel. No doubt the game will be extravagant in every sense of the term if it ever is released, but for Valve to release multiple installments in multiple games and just keep us in the rain, has not only gotten old but also inexcusable. It was a smack to the face from Valve. And now reading to not expect anything from E3 again, is just sickening. Valve has not only forgotten their oldest fans, but has also forsaken them. I’m not waiting any longer. It’s been fun Gordon Freeman.

    #14 3 years ago
  15. Ireland Michael

    @14 You take gaming waaaaay too seriously.

    #15 3 years ago
  16. Pulsified

    #15 It is the principle, NOT the game. Will you Make millions of Dollars on a movie, and then not say whether or not -with millions of fans hounding you- whether you were to release a sequel or not? When those were the fans that rose you up out of nothing?

    #16 3 years ago
  17. Ireland Michael

    @15 Principle? It’s not like your wife left you or something.

    I can guarantee you that as soon as they do announce this game, you’ll be the first one to preorder it.

    #17 3 years ago
  18. Lewis247

    It’s funny the amount of comments I’ve seen in recently where people will say ‘I’ve stopped caring about epsiode 3′ and so on when really they are going to blow their load as soon as it’s revealed.

    We know it’s coming so until then I’m happy.

    #18 3 years ago
  19. Pulsified

    @17 Lol now you are insinuating that I wrote that whole comment just to pass the time and that I am not going to follow through with my words, well there You’d be wrong kind sir. And do you not know the definition of principle?

    #19 3 years ago
  20. Ireland Michael

    @19 Yes.

    But I’ve also seen the Diablo 3 colour scheme fiasco, the Modern Warfare 2 Dedicated Servers fiasco, and countless other dramas on the internet over the internet.

    I’m just waiting for a petition.

    #20 3 years ago
  21. Pulsified

    @20 They recently had one for this series (it was fan-based though) I took part in it as well, where you were to boot up Half-Life 2 on a certain date and play it, in doing such the top played games list was to be topped by Half-life 2 but ehh, even if it were to have worked, it wouldn’t have made Valve release a peep. What kind of a petition are you waiting for?

    #21 3 years ago

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