Is this the plot for the Half-Life 2 finale?

Is this the plot for the Half-Life 2 finale?

An ex Valve staff member possibly reveals the climactic finale to the Half-Life story!

Half-Life. Those two words should evoke fond memories in gamers around the world. Released in 1998, written by Valve and published by Sierra Studios, Half-Life was a ground breaking first person shooter.

The game had you play as a scientist, Gordon Freeman, where you help participate in a very important experiment at the Black Mesa Research Facility.

Unfortunately, the experiment goes wrong and a portal is opened to another dimension. The strange creatures of that world start to come through and it’s up to you to try and turn events around.

Half-Life 2 published in 2004 continued that story and once again wowed gamers with its story and gameplay. The story, however, ends on a cliff hanger leaving many gamers frustrated.

After a wait of two years, Valve released Half-Life 2: Episode 1 in 2006 which continued the story right where the previous title had finished. A year later, the story continued with Half-Life 2: Episode 2 which again finished on a huge cliffhanger and that was the last we heard from Gordon Freeman.

Over the last ten years, there have been many stories, rumours and speculation as to the whereabouts of Half-Life 2: Episode 3 but there has been very little information coming from developers Valve. Considering the length of time, there hasn’t even been a “sorry, not happening!” statement either.

On August 25th, Former Valve writer Marc Laidlaw posted a link to a fictional letter on his site. Despite the strange change of names, for example, Gertie Fremont rather than Gordon Freeman, the whole letter reads like a possible story outline for the much anticipated Episode 3.


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Is this concept art from the long awaited Half-Life 2: Episode 3?

To give this story some credit, Laidlaw joined Valve in the 1990s and left in 2016 but in that time he wrote the story for the whole of the Half-Life saga.

The original letter can be read here, a version with corrected names and events can be also be read here. Thanks to Kotaku, here is an abbreviated version:

Gordon and Alyx head for the Borealis, the research ship mentioned at the end of Episode 2. They’re shot down as they approach, though, and find that surrounding the ship is an enormous Combine base, inside which the Borealis is continually flickering in and out of existence.

After an encounter with Dr. Breen—whose consciousness had been transplanted into an alien slug’s body, allowing him to survive the demise of his human body in Episode 2—Gordon, Alyx and Dr. Mossman (who you rescue from a Combine prison) manage to board the Borealis, and while there are pulled across both space and time, seeing things like the Seven Hour War, alien worlds the Combine were about to conquer and even the ship’s origins at Aperture.

Following a dispute over what to do with the ship (Mossman argues for keeping the ship, Alyx wants to honour her father’s wish to destroy it), Alyx shoots Mossman dead, and commits Gordon to a plan to drive the ship into the heart of the Combine’s “invasion nexus”.

Before it can strike, though, the G-Man arrives, speaks with Alyx and the pair depart, leaving Gordon alone to drive the ship on its suicide mission. Just as its about to hit its target, the Vortigaunts open a portal and save Gordon, dropping him on a shore where he isn’t certain of what year it is or how the war against the Combine has ended.

The letter ends with,

“Except no further correspondence from me regarding these matters; this is my final episode.”

which makes you think that this was to be the end of the Gordon Freeman adventures.

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But to add further evidence to this story is concept art that was anonymously submitted to, a site for Valve based news, back in 2012. The art was apparently from around 2008 and matches with events mentioned in the just released story outline, in particular, the images of the crashed helicopter that matches the one you were about to use at the end of Episode 2.


Half-Life 2

Is this concept art from the long awaited Half-Life 2: Episode 3?

There is also artwork of strange Xen creatures, Alyx wearing Eli’s jacket and someone in snow protection gear trying to escape from a combine advisor. You can hop on over to to see the complete set.

Sadly this is probably the closest will ever come to Half-life 2: Episode 3

John Abbitt

About the author | John Abbitt

@UKFilmNerd | John loves film, and he used to write for his own website, The Tydirium Hangar Bay, in the late 1990s. Whilst that website became lost in the passages of time, John's love of film did not. He's back, writing for The Unheard Nerd.