When Valve began work on Half-Life 2, they simultaneously began work on Source 2. The plan was to produce a new and powerful engine alongside a benchmark of gaming. By this point you know the story. Half-Life 2 is one of the most celebrated games of all time, but the stress of creating Source 2 created issues as the studio tried to move on to new projects, and Valve Level Designer Dario Casali recently revealed that was a big part of why a new Half-Life game didn’t happen for a long time after Half-Life 2: Episode 2 was done.
Casali recently opened up in an interview with IGN posted on March 23, 2020. Following the launch of Half-Life: Alyx, Casali spoke to a number of factors regarding the delay of any and all Half-Life games for years on end following the launch of Half-Life 2: Episode 2. While various reasons such as “scope creep” forced the team to take longer and longer on episodes that were supposed to take a year to make a piece, Casali also spoke to the factor of working on Source 2 at the same time as Half-Life 2 as definite issue.
“We [didn’t] want to make that same Half-Life 2 mistake again of working on Source 2 and the next Half-Life game at the same time, because that created a lot of pain the first time we tried to do that,” Casali explained.
Source 2 was in development alongside Half-Life 2 and HL2 Episodes 1 and 2. After Half-Life 2, according to Casali and IGN, Valve knew they were invested in the development of Source 2 and couldn’t go really go back to Half-Life until the engine was complete. It didn’t help that various concepts were made that never really captured the depth of what the team wanted out of a sequel.
“We were never really that happy with what we came up with,” Casali admitted.
And so, when it came to 2016 and work began on Half-Life: Alyx, the Source 2 engine was in a nearly complete form. Casali reportedly believes it’s a turning point for Valve and the Half-Life series, and we've heard from others at Valve that this is hopefully a return to Half-Life, but not the end of it. Many, including us here at Shacknews in our review of Half-Life: Alyx, would agree.
TJ Denzer posted a new article, Valve didn't want to make another Half-Life game before Source 2 was ready
So the source 2 engine is finally finished? lol. How many years old is it? I’m sure they updated it but, it’s gotta be behind the times a bit?