Half-Life 2: Episode Three

NECA open up Gravity Gun pre-orders

Tom Senior at

The Half-Life 2 Zero Point Energy Field Manipulator Replica will go on sale in April, but they're going to be pretty tough to get hold of. Joystiq have noticed a sales page on Think Geek offering NECA's 1:1 model for $150. There will only be 5000 sold worldwide. Once they sell out, "they're gone forever!" The two foot gun features "orange LEDs, 2 handles, 2 triggers, 4 unique sounds from the game." You'll find a list of pre-order links here on the NECA pre-order page.

I think I prefer their Portal gun, but sadly that's flown out of stock. All that's left is a little note saying that the entire batch went in less than half an hour. There's more merch on the NECA site, and you can get a closer look at the Gravity Gun replica in this photograph right here.


Half-Life 3 and Dragon Age 3 Gamescom listings "a mistake" say organisers

Tom Senior at

Everyone's been getting pretty excited this morning about the possibility of a big Half-Life 3 reveal at Gamescom. That's thanks to a pdf on the Gamescom site listing Half-Life 3 as one of the exhibits. A translation of the text at the top of the document asks readers to "Please take note of the sources: exhibitors, media, intenet forums, blogs."


Black Mesa: Source video shows renovated On A Rail mission in action

Tom Senior at

Some leaked footage claiming to belong to the elusive Black Mesa Source mod has appeared over on Valve Time, showing some classic weapons and environments renovated in Valve's Source engine. The video shows a bit of violence from the 'On A Rail' mission. But for the odd detail, like iron sights aiming for the Magnum, it all feels very familiar, albeit a fair bit prettier than the original. Take a look.


"Next-gen Source 2" references spotted in Source Filmmaker files

Tom Senior at

It looks as though Valve are working on a proper follow up to the Source Engine they've been gradually improving over the course of the last decade. Valve Time have pulled numerous references to a "next-gen 'Source 2'" engine along with various "Source 2 tools" icons from the guts of the Source Film Maker.

Valve have previously played down the need for an entirely new version of Source, and have concentrated instead on updating the original version to keep up with modern engine tech. That's worked quite nicely so far, but if these references are correct, a more significant step up is on the way. Here are a few of the pulled strings referring to Source 2.


Slender Man Source mod will let you scare the hell out of yourself for free, with friends

Tom Senior at

Remember the Slender Man game we mentioned a couple of weeks back? It's a terrifying indie horror based on the spooky Something Awful monster. You had to wander through a dark forest with a pale torch hunting for messages while trying not to look directly at the creature. It's scary as hell.

GOOD NEWS EVERYBODY, a different team are creating a version of Slender Man in Valve's Source engine. Fittingly, it's called Slender Source, and this one will let you avoid a horrifying death with friends. Yaay!


Black Mesa: Source screenshots bring back memories, BM:S lives!

Tom Senior at

It's alive! A bunch of new screenshots have gone online for Black Mesa: Source. In case you'd missed it, or forgotten it in these years of silence, BM:S is a fan project that aims to recreate the entirety of Half-Life 1 in the Half-Life 2 Source engine. The devs promised to releaser more details if their Facebook page hit 20,000 likes. It did, and they have. So without further ado, here are eight new screenshots for Black Mesa: Source.


28,000 fans to play Half-Life 2 this Saturday, why not join them?

Tom Senior at

This Saturday the 28,000 members of this Steam group are planning to play Half-Life 2 together. It's single player, of course, but there's nothing stopping fans from getting together to stroke their chins and nod slowly in mass mutual appreciation for one of the best shooters ever made.

The group hopes that the massive play session will shoot Half-Life 2 up the Steam most-played list and let Valve know how many people are still waiting for Half-Life 2: Episode 3. Valve certainly know this already, and probably receive dozens of emails every day asking "WHERE AM HL3?" but the group hopes to deliver the message in a more appreciative way.


Valve employee wears Half-Life 3 shirt, trolls internet

Tom Senior at

It's just a man in a T-shirt of course, but there's a Half-Life 3 logo on the front of it and a Valve employee inside it.

Art director and executive producer at UberEnt (the team behind Super Monday Night Combat) posted the photo above on Twitter with the message "All I'm saying is I saw this at a local game developer event worn by a Valve employee," sensibly attaching a #ValveTrolling hashtag. He couldn't get any more info out of Valve's man but he confirms that "I did try to smother my face in his chest on the HL3 logo." This did not help.


Win Half-Life 2: Episode 29!

PC Gamer at

Attention PC gamers! We’ve got a giveaway so momentous that it stands to eclipse epochal moments in history going all the way back to the discovery of fire by an unfortunate troglodyte in a lightning storm about one and a half million years ago. In fact, it’s so spectacularly massive that it may create a singularity unimagined by even Stephen Hawking at his most fanciful after a fifth of bourbon. What could be so huge? How about this: a magical Steam code that will grant you free, permanent access to Valve’s entire catalog—which includes some of the finest PC games ever made—and every game Valve ever will make. That’s right: you can win Portal 2, Dota 2 and even Half-Life 2: Episode 3.* It’s the prize that keeps on giving, year after year!

But wait, that’s not all! Click through to see what else, and how to win it!

Update: Winners have been drawn, and notifications are going out. We'll post the list of winners soon!

Update 2: Winners posted!


Peter Molyneux's son really wants Half-Life 2: Episode 3

Tim Edwards at

Peter Molyneux, one time hero of the PC, one-time head of Lionhead, now doomed to make Fable 3, 4, 7 and 9* appears to really want Half-Life 2: Episode 3. So much so that he's prepared to make his son, his own flesh and blood, ask Valve for Half-Life 2: Episode 3. And then put that very video on YouTube.

It's kinda cute. And embedded below.


We ask Gabe Newell about piracy, DRM and Episode Three

Tom Francis at

I was at Valve last month to interview pretty much everyone I could find, and play one of the most exciting PC games on the horizon: Portal 2. The preview I wrote, and the profile on Valve themselves, is in the new issue of PC Gamer in the UK. But we've also been putting up the interviews here on the site, one a day for the last week.

Today's is the final part, in which I ask Gabe and co the big questions: what's the point of Steamworks? Is piracy a solved problem? And where's Episode Three? I wasn't optimistic that they'd be willing to talk about it, but I couldn't leave without asking. I'm afraid it didn't go any better than I expected, but I've included the transcript so you can read for yourself. What they did tell me was how Steam revived the Russian games market, why Valve's competitors actually help their sales, and how not to do DRM.