During his AMA on Reddit, Valve founder Gabe Newell answered in the affirmative when, predictably, a fan inquired after the odds of continuing to explore the Half-Life and Portal universe.
"Any chance of a new IP that takes place in the half-life/portal universe? I feel like there's a lot of story left to be explored there," Reddit user japastthebass asked Newell.
"Yep," the taciturn GabeN replied, setting off a chain reaction of excitement.
While it's not much, Newell offering a glimmer of hope of more Half-Life games is the closest thing to confirmation that the franchise may continue in some form that fans have received in years.
Japastthebass's phrasing might be integral to determining what, exactly, another Half-Life and/or Portal game (remember, Portal, like most Valve IPs, is primed for a third entry as well) might be. The Reddit user asked about a "new IP" rather than a sequel to Valve's first-person-shooter series that launched in 1998. Perhaps Valve has plans to develop a proper FPS sequel, or perhaps the developers have another direction in mind.
Newell's AMA comes less than a week after Game Informer's Andrew Reiner published an interview with an anonymous Valve insider who said bluntly that Half-Life 3 did not exist, and had never existed in any state resembling a playable form.
"People are going to harass them for more Half-Life," Reiner's source told him. "The idea of delivering a third episode of Half-Life 2, that’s dead. There’s no universe where that will happen. I think there is a universe where a standalone thing could come together to fill in that hole, but that’s tough."