Left 4 Dead 2 adds achievement to celebrate Gaben blasting Gnome Chompski into space

A dwarf destined for space.
(Image credit: Rocket Lab)

As we reported earlier this month, Gabe Newell is going to launch a garden gnome into space for charity. You can see the little fellow above, who "will be manufactured from titanium and printed in the shape of Half-Life gaming icon Gnome Chompski." Chompski first appeared in Half-Life 2: Episode Two where an achievement, Little Rocket Man, involved carrying it from the start of the game to the end.

Left 4 Dead 2 has now received an appropriately small update that adds an "Honorary achievement for Gnome Chompski's upcoming journey into space on Rocket Lab's "Return To Sender" mission." Chompski appears several times in Left 4 Dead 2, both in-the-clay so to speak and on posters, and again there's an achievement ('Guardin' Gnome') involving carrying it an unfeasibly long way to a rescue chopper.

The new achievement is called Gnome Alone, and the text is "If you are reading this achievement, Gabe Newell has successfully launched Gnome Chompski into space." It is of course yet to activate.

Left 4 Dead 2 Gnome Chompski achievement.

(Image credit: Valve)

You can check Rocket Lab's website for updates on when the gnome will launch, and at the time of writing it's saying blast-off will be "no earlier than November 20."

When it does happen the livestream will be here, and for every person who watches either live or within 24 hours of launch Gabe Newell will donate one dollar to the Paediatric Intensive Care Unit at Starship, a children's hospital in Auckland, New Zealand. Newell has been staying in the country since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Rich Stanton

Rich is a games journalist with 15 years' experience, beginning his career on Edge magazine before working for a wide range of outlets, including Ars Technica, Eurogamer, GamesRadar+, Gamespot, the Guardian, IGN, the New Statesman, Polygon, and Vice. He was the editor of Kotaku UK, the UK arm of Kotaku, for three years before joining PC Gamer. He is the author of a Brief History of Video Games, a full history of the medium, which the Midwest Book Review described as "[a] must-read for serious minded game historians and curious video game connoisseurs alike."