Great news to anyone who enjoyed Portal 2 and Half-Life! Erik Wolpaw, the writer that worked on both Half-Life episodes and Portal 2 has returned to Valve after leaving in 2017. Wolpaw worked until recently with Double Fine and appears to have come back to Valve.
How do we know about his return? Reddit user Trenchman spotted the writer’s name in the Artifact credits and began researching until he got Gabe Newell’s confirmation. Here is part of his Reddit post:
“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.”
As we mentioned above, Trenchman reached out and e-mailed Newel to get his confirmation. He was surprised that he got a reply:
“To get clarity on this, I decided to check with Gabe Newell, who confirmed that Erik Wolpaw has returned to Valve.”
Here is the screenshot of the e-mail which YouTube news channel Valve News Network stated that it was not a fake!
2017 Not a Good Year For Valve’s Writers
So, now that we indeed know Wolpaw is working again at Valve, what’s next?
Back in 2017, Valve has lost not just Wolpaw, but also Chet Faliszek and Jay Pinkerton. Faliszek went to Bossa Studios, and Pinkerton returned to Valve in 2018. Marc Laidlaw, the writer of Half-Life and Half-Life 2, also left Valve a year before that.
After losing these writers, it looked like Valve no longer made singleplayer games that come with a unique story. The last of its kind was Portal 2, and even though some of these games appear to have returned, Valve is still focusing on the competitive games Dota 2 and Artifact.
Will there be any singleplayer or games relying on stories in the near future? It’s still a mystery, considering last year Newell praised Artifact – which is “the first of several games that are going to be coming from us.”
Robert J. Smith is still early into his career as tech reporter but has already had his work published in many major publications including JoyStiq and Android Authority. In regards to academics, Robert earned a degree in business from Fordham University. Robert has passion for emerging technology and covers upcoming products and breakthroughs in science and tech.