Valve's Gabe Newell Says They're Back To Making Games

Good news for folks still holding out hope that someday Half-Life 3 will actually be confirmed and not just another long-running meme. Valve has announced that they're getting back to shipping video games. For the last decade or so Valve has focused on their online gaming and software store, Steam as well as making hardware for PC gaming.

The news came directly from none other than the big head honcho himself Gabe Newell during a demo tour of Valve's new DOTA 2-themed digital card game, Artifact. According to PC Gamer, Newell stated that Artifact is just the beginning: 

"Artifact is the first of several games that are going to be coming from us. So that's sort of good news. Hooray! Valve's going to start shipping games again."

Back in January 2017 Newell confirmed that Valve was also working on at least one new single-player game during a Reddit AMA. Soon after, Valve confirmed that three new VR projects were also in the works. Newell wasn't ready to confirm anything more beyond what's already been mentioned just yet but went on to say that the real big deal was being able to develop hardware and software at the same time:

"We aren't going to be talking about it today, but sort of the big thing, the new arrow we have in our quiver, really, is our ability to develop hardware and software simultaneously." 

For the last few years, Valve has felt that the ecosystem of PC gaming was heading towards a more closed environment and had been focusing their energy on Steam VR and the Vive. But with that focus came a lack of game development. In fact, DOTA 2 was the last game that Valve developed, however that focus on VR ended up teaching the team the skills they needed to efficiently develop hardware and kept the PC gaming ecosystem from being closed off:

"The positive thing about the Vive is, in addition to making sure that nobody created an iOS closed platform for it, was also that it gave us the opportunity to develop our in-house expertise in hardware design. Five years ago, we didn't have electrical engineers and people who know how to do robots. Now there's pretty much no project in the hardware space that we wouldn't be comfortable taking on. We can design chips if we need to, we can do industrial design, and so on."

Newell went on to say that Nintendo was a big influence on Valve wanting to create hardware and software simultaneously:

"We've always been a little bit jealous of companies like Nintendo. When Miyamoto is sitting down and thinking about the next version of Zelda or Mario, he's thinking what is the controller going to look like, what sort of graphics and other capabilities. He can introduce new capabilities like motion input because he controls both of those things. And he can make the hardware look as good as possible because he's designing the software at the same time that's really going to take advantage of it. So that is something we've been jealous of, and that's something that you'll see us taking advantage of subsequently."

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