Marc Laidlaw, the main writer behind the Half-Life games, has revealed that Half-Life 3 wouldn’t have brought any conclusion to the series. On top that, Half-Life 3 would have ended with yet another cliffhanger.
In an interview with Arcade Attack, Laidlaw spoke at length about his time at Valve. The writer touched a number of things, like DOTA and developing a first-person shooter with story, but one of the more interesting responses Laidlaw offered during the interview was on what Half-Life 3 would have been.
When h\asked if he had “any idea whether Half-Life 3 will ever be released” and whether or not he’d return to Valve for the third installment in the series, Laidlaw replied:
“No idea. And I have no interest in going back. I had ideas for Episode 3. They were all supposed to take the series to a point where I could step away from it and leave it to the next generation. I had hoped for a reset between HL2 and HL3 that was as dramatic as the shift between HL1 and HL2. I honestly don’t know if anyone else shared this goal, but it seemed important to me to give ultimate freedom to whoever inherited the series, with my own personal set of loose ends tied up to my satisfaction. Unfortunately, I was not able to do that. But I never thought as far ahead as HL3, unless you were to say that HL3 and Episode 3 were the same thing. I will say that I expected every installment would end without resolution, forever and ever…there was some rumor going around that Ep3 or HL3 would end Gordon Freeman’s story, and I don’t think that was accurate. My intention was that Ep3 would simply tie up the plot threads that were particular to HL2. But it would still end like HL1 and HL2, with Gordon in an indeterminate space, on hold, waiting for the next game to begin. So one cliffhanger after another.”
Laidlaw left Valve in January 2016 after working there since 1997. In addition to that, Chet Faliszek, the writer of Half-Life 2: Episode One and Episode Two, left Valve earlier this year.