Half-Life 2: Episode 3 may not be an official pursuit, yet that doesn’t imply series author Marc Laidlaw hasn’t speculated a cosmos post Episode 2. In any case, he appears to lament making open those speculations as an unofficial novelette.
In an interview with _Rock Paper Shotgun_, Laidlaw divulged the reason why he lamented the publication of his 2017 Half-Life fan-fiction on his website. The scribe had dreamt of more ventures in the Half-Life domain but spoke of the troubles, humiliation, and discombobulation that ensued his judgement. When elucidating why he did it, Laidlaw kept it candid.
“I lost my mind,” Laidlaw confessed to Rock Paper Shotgun. “I was stranded on an island, totally disconnected from my acquaintances and the creative environment I’d been part of for two decades — no contact, no one to give me a reality check. It seemed like a lark, until I actually started doing it.”
For those not au fait with the _Episode 3 debacle_, Laidlaw published the “Epistle 3” short story to his web-space in 2017, arriving in the wake of the anniversary of Episode 2, told from the perspective of a certain “Gertie Freemont” with references to “Alex Vaunt” – assumed allusions to Gordon Freeman and Alyx Vance. Regardless of his later _discourse of plans_ for Half-Life’s future, _by the time of the publication of Epistle 3, Laidlaw had already departed Valve_, no longer having any connection to the developer.
“Had I not hit publish,” Laidlaw mused, “I would have avoided a lot of
embarrassment, not just for me, but for those I had worked with, and those who
had gotten their hopes up for something that could never have been.” Despite the
difficulties, he maintained his enthusiasm for the project, his ideas, and the
creative disagreements that had shaped the Half-Life series.
Despite the debacle, Laidlaw went into some description in the interview, remarking his notions continued with Borealis. But his ultimate views appear unmistakable — nothing happens until development commences.
Ultimately, Half-Life kept alive in some form with the 2020 release of Half-Life: Alyx, though it’s not the Episode 3 continuation fans are forever longing for. Since then, other tidbits from interminably-abandoned Half-Life ventures have also become apparent, such as concept art of possible miscreants.
Andrea Shearon is an accomplished freelance contributor for IGN, furnishing the latest in games and entertainment. In her seven-year tenure in the gaming world, she has experienced many roles and has had her work featured on such esteemed outlets as Fanbyte, USA Today’s FTW, TheGamer, VG247, and RPG Site. To find out more about her, follow her on Twitter (@Maajora) or catch her on the Materia Possessions podcast discussing FFXIV, RPGs, and any series involving titanic robots.