Half-Life: Alyx ends with a massive twist that sets the stage for future Half-Life games – oh, if you’re concerned about spoilers, you should probably jump off now. Despite being a prequel, Alyx opens up the door for further Half-Life games, and while Valve doesn’t have a full map for Half-Life 3 – or whatever the next game ends up being – the studio is “excited” about what’s coming next.
“The ending certainly suggests certain directions that we’re all really excited about,” writer Jay Pinkerton tells Polygon, “so it’s not like there’s no idea, but no, there’s not a concrete, 300-page manual of where the game goes after this.” If you haven’t yet checked out the Half-Life: Alyx ending, it features Alyx making a deal with G-Man to prevent her father’s death at the end of Episode Two.
So does that mean future Half-Life games are going to feature a split timeline? How does the timeline even work with Alyx pulled out of it and Eli now alive? “We have a timeline, and ideas in our heads that we told each other as we went, so we’re working through it,” writer Eric Wolpaw says, though he doesn’t want to shut down the “fun” speculation.
Valve says you shouldn’t worry that the studio is completely making things up as it goes along, though. “We have an answer, we assure you,” Pinkerton says. “We have an answer, but we don’t necessarily want to spell it out.”
The one thing the writers do specifically address here is the fact that, in the course of Episode Two, the portals the Combine are using to invade earth have been closed. So with the Combine cut off from reinforcements, “you need to start thinking about shifting some of the focus to something else,” Wolpaw says.
Valve has offered plenty of hope that there will be a next Half-Life game in interviews both before and Alyx officially launched, and the new game has kicked the door of possibilities wide open.