If you’re one of the holdouts still hoping for Half-Life 3 to ever see the light of day, you’d best look away now. Mike Laidlaw, lead writer of the Half-Life series, has reportedly retired. That’s right, the man responsible for penning Gordon Freeman’s glorious tales is no longer working for Valve, and, presumably, no longer connected with Half-Life 3.
Now there are a few caveats to this. The info comes from Reddit, where poster TeddyWolf put up an email conversation he’d had with Mike Laidlaw, after doing what we all want to do and pestering him for information on Half-Life 3. So basically we’re taking this on the word of the Reddit user alone, but they have provided correspondence with various other sources to back this up.
In response to the rumours that he’d retired, Laidlaw said “Yes it is true. I have retired from Valve.
"I am no longer a full or part time Valve employee, no longer involved in day to day decisions or operations, no longer a spokesman for the company, no longer privy to most types of confidential information, no longer working on Valve games in any capacity."
As for what this means for Half-Life, it’s not entirely clear. “I don’t and can’t entirely know,” explained Laidlaw. “Half-Life is fully owned by Valve. It came into existence before my arrival. Where Valve may choose to take it in the future is not in my hands. I have been a grateful co-creator, but my time of working on the series is behind me. Since I no longer speak for Valve, it would be inappropriate for me to answer questions to speculate openly on the fate of the franchise.”
If he has left Valve then he would undoubtedly be tied up in some pretty heavy non-disclosure agreements, so there’s not much we can take away from his statements on Half-Life 3. There’s still every chance that Laidlaw could have already written the story for Half-Life 3. Or even dozens of variations of it perhaps, but it still doesn’t mean we’re any closer to the ‘Bigfoot’ of gaming appearing any time soon.