Sometimes it seems like there’s a Half-Life 2: Episode 3 rumor every other week; they show up, we report them, they’re revealed as false. And so completes the ancient circle of web-journalism.
This time the rumour comes in the form of some supposed concept art, which was published recently on the Valve fan site ValveTime.net.
You can check out the full set of stills here.
The artwork itself is certainly in keeping stylistically with the actual Half-Life 2 and Episode 2 concept art we’ve seen in the past and it’s definitely of a high enough standard that this could feasibly be genuine leaked artwork.
Of course that doesn’t act as proof; there are plenty of artists out there capable of producing work of this standard and happen to be Half-Life fans.
The posting naturally insists that the art is real; the comments however are very much split down the middle. This could be a genuine leak of course. It could also be a clever viral marketing ploy from Valve in order to cultivate a palpable buzz leading up to their next flagship release.
More likely though is that the stills are convincing fakes. The fact that the gallery states the concept art is circa. 2008 leads me to believe that we’d have seen them way before four years after their creation.
In all likelihood this is a clever hoax, possibly designed specifically to draw traffic to ValveTime.net. But hey, I wouldn’t be too ticked off if that were the case.
They’ve served a purpose either way; we’re talking about Episode 3 again and we’re reminded that one day soon the last free man will grace our monitors again…
Head over to ValveTime.net and make your own mind up whether they’re real or not.