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Erik Wolpaw (writer of Portal 1-2, co-wrote HL2 Eps 1-2) is back at Valve

Jan 28, 2018
2,073
#1
So if you check the credits for Artifact, Valve’s latest game release, you can find Erik Wolpaw’s name in the list of Valve employees, which suggested that he had rejoined Valve at some point before Artifact came out. He had previously left Valve in 2017 around the same time as Jay Pinkerton (since also returned to Valve) and Chet Faliszek (now working at Bossa).
Reddit

GabeN confirmed as well. Valve is gearing for a new announcement? A lot of writers returned to Valve in the last year.
 
Oct 25, 2017
3,084
#8
So how did Psychobauts 2 work then? He wrote an outline or something and then left? Curious. It’s obviously not the same as writing a movie script and moving on. Hopefully Valve puts him to good use now that he’s back.
 
Oct 25, 2017
4,148
Belgium
#13
Can we not do this dumb shit. It's 10am.
What dumb shit? It's an honest assessment, according to my own opinion, of Valve's repertoire.

So how did Psychobauts 2 work then? He wrote an outline or something and then left? Curious. It’s obviously not the same as writing a movie script and moving on. Hopefully Valve puts him to good use now that he’s back.
That game's basically content-complete, according to the latest dev vlog, so I think his job on that one is done.
 
Mar 16, 2018
925
#14
something half life will release eventually
it might not be half life 3
it might not be out for 5 more years

but something you will be able to buy on steam with the name half life in it will release someday, guaranteed
 
Oct 25, 2017
4,148
Belgium
#16
something half life will release eventually
it might not be half life 3
it might not be out for 5 more years

but something you will be able to buy on steam with the name half life in it will release someday, guaranteed
No "might not" about it. I won't be what people want. Which is to say, an actual ending to the actual thing they started a decade+ ago. That ship has sailed.

I think there's a chance that they'll start releasing some interesting stuff again though, in the context of VR, what with the Campo Santo acquisition. Maybe some sort of Half Life experience springs from that, who knows.
 
Oct 27, 2017
77
#17
Hopefully he returned because he is interested to work on something he believes in, not just to get a pay check. Those are two different things
 
Oct 25, 2017
4,716
#20
Hopefully we get a single player game from them, preferably something first person again. HL 1/2 and the Portal games were all so good. L4D series was pretty fun as well but preferably we get something more of a campaign from em

I dont really care about MOBA or card stuff.
 
Oct 29, 2017
207
#24
So how did Psychobauts 2 work then? He wrote an outline or something and then left? Curious. It’s obviously not the same as writing a movie script and moving on. Hopefully Valve puts him to good use now that he’s back.
He was still working at Valve when he started on Psychonauts 2. There was a gag in the original crowdfunding video about Gabe letting him work on it (it's around the 2:52 mark in the video below). If he has anything left to write on it, still, I would imagine the same deal would be in place.

 
Last edited:
Oct 25, 2017
3,084
#30
He was still working at Valve when he started on Psychonauts 2. There was a gag in the original crowdfunding video about Gabe letting him work on it (it's around the 2:52 mark in the video below). If he has anything left to write on it, still, I would imagine the same deal would be in place.

Oh, right! I forgot Valve just lent him out for that.
 
Oct 25, 2017
2,561
#31
I truly think Half Life VR is real, and is being made to push new VR headsets and the Knuckles stuff. It matches what Gabe said and every little leak that happened around it.

The problem is, as always with Valve, whether it'll actually release or not.
 
Oct 24, 2017
121
UK
#34
Can we seriously stop this "no real games" shit?
I think in this case it's less of a "Valve no longer makes games" false argument and more down to the fact Erik Wolpaw is specifically a writer and Valve haven't released a narrative-focused title for eight years now. Completely agree that its silly to say Valve haven't done anything since Portal 2 as they have CS, Dota, and Artifact - but it's definitely exciting that there seems to be a reason they have high-profile writers returning to the company.
 
Oct 26, 2017
825
Switzerland
#37
I truly think Half Life VR is real, and is being made to push new VR headsets and the Knuckles stuff. It matches what Gabe said and every little leak that happened around it.

The problem is, as always with Valve, whether it'll actually release or not.
I'm still convinced that Valve will be the ones who release the VR killer app. They're developing the VR Hard- and Software and that's why it's taking an eternity.

Can we seriously stop this "no real games" shit?

20m unique players (not a real game though)

https://www.giantbomb.com/articles/erik-wolpaws-top-10-games-of-2017/1100-5658/

Well, that’s it. I’m out of the game industry and have no plans to return.

I wonder what happened...
Yakuza 0 on number 1. This dude has great taste.
 
Oct 10, 2018
476
#42
Wolpaw and Laidlaw were probably content at Valve just writing lore and item descriptions, so them being underutilized for years is normal for them.
 

Hope

Member
Oct 28, 2017
611
#43
I highly doubt people think that they haven't made real games since P2, but I would find it to be a shame if someone of Wolpaws talents would be working on something akin to their recent output.
It's not about that. It's about the MT in every fucking game. They build their games around those. The loot boxes that everyone hates so much basically started with Valve.
 

daxy

Member
Oct 25, 2017
3,894
#44
Don't waste this dude's talent. Give us some actual freakin' games, Valve, instead of yet another vehicle for microstransactions.
Here's a crazy thought: maybe Wolpaw likes working at Valve even though it doesn't develop singleplayer narrative-driven games anymore.
 
Oct 25, 2017
4,148
Belgium
#45
Here's a crazy thought: maybe Wolpaw likes working at Valve.
Okay? What's your point? Fact of the matter is that he hasn't had the chance to write anything of actual substance since Portal 2. Whether he minds that or not has no bearing on whether or not his talent is being wasted.
 
Oct 30, 2017
3,501
Denmark
#46
I bet if they actually got Half Life 3 going or some canonical continuation of Episode 2, they could get him and Laidlaw back just for that production's duration.
Wolpaw and Laidlaw were probably content at Valve just writing lore and item descriptions, so them being underutilized for years is normal for them.
Laidlaw did cite the work environment as being one of the reasons he quit, not specifically because of Valve but because of how game-development works and how "chaotic" it can be, which valve is due to how they move between projects all the time.
 
Oct 25, 2017
2,217
#49
Cool, i'm sure he'll do a great job helping out with the storefront. Someone needs to edit all those descriptions.