Valve Corp president and all-around gaming figurehead, Gabe Newell, said in a recent interview that the company is developing multiple games and working on having a massive eSports tournament in New Zealand.
Newell, his family, and a group of his friends vacationed to New Zealand early in 2020 but decided to stay when the COVID-19 pandemic struck. In an interview with New Zealand’s 1 News, he reassured people he has no plans in relocating Valve, although his employees have an interest in moving there.
In the 1 News interview, Newell said, “We definitely have games in development that we’re going to be announcing — it’s fun to ship games.” Reflecting on last year’s Half-Life: Alyx, he said, “Alyx was great — to be back doing single-player games, that created a lot of momentum inside of the company to do more of that.”
When asked about entries from the company’s most popular franchises — Portal and Half-Life — Newell became sheepish in his response. “I’ve successfully not spoken about those things for a long time and I hope to continue to not talk about them until they are moot questions.”
Valve moments before they were going to release Half-Life 3: pic.twitter.com/t5w6YCCTNK
— The Kλrla (@thekarla2nd) January 20, 2021
”The nice thing is, by not answering those questions, I avoid the community coming up with new, equally-difficult-to-answer-questions.”
Fans have long wondered why Valve has been so shy about Portal and Half-Life. Fans have speculated the company is anxious around meeting high expectations or perhaps Valve lost interest in game development. However, the positive response to Half-Life: Alyx clearly shows Valve is still interested in development.
VR seems to be the direction Valve wants to head towards. Over the past few years, Valve gravitated toward creating its own VR hardware and supporting games for it.
The World’s Biggest eSports Tournament
In the interview, Gabe Newell talked about holding the company’s DOTA 2 and CS: GO eSports Tournament in New Zealand.
“It’s a realistic possibility and it gets more realistic all the time,” said Newell. “I literally could not, if I had to guess, when it would be safe to do an in-person tournament anywhere [else] in the world. …I think, with a lot of confidence, we’d be able to plan for that in New Zealand.”
The annual DOTA 2 Tournament, The International, has the highest prize pool out of all the eSports tournaments (find out why per theScore). The 2019 pool has a US $34.3 million prize pool. The other Valve property with a huge tournament, Counter Strike: Global Offensive, had its 2020 prize pool at $2 million before it was canceled due to the pandemic. The International was meant to be held in Stockholm, Sweden last year, but was canceled as well due to COVID.
I’ll leave the link to the 1 News interview right here. It’s a fascinating interview that covers various fun topics such as Newell’s opinion on Cyberpunk 2077 and some of the other games he’s playing.
What games do you think Valve is working on? Half-Life 3? Let me know in the comments.