The sequel to Gordon Freeman's ongoing fight against the Combine has been rumored for years, ever since "Half-Life 2: Episode 3" was mentioned in an interview following the release of "The Orange Box" in 2007. To combat "Valve time," and ensure a more efficient delivery of a sequel to "Half-Life 2," Valve opted to go the episodic route for what would have been "Half-Life 3." But after "Episode 2" released, the developer went quiet and Freeman's crowbar was never seen again.
A NeoGAF user spotted the filing a European trademark website, leading to speculation that perhaps Valve was finally returning to the franchise that put them on the map.
Valve, however, has not been sitting on hits hands. Since "Episode 2" released in 2007, the Seattle, Wash. based developer has released two "Left 4 Dead" titles, a followup to "Portal," ongoing updates to "Team Fortress 2" and "Dota 2" earlier this year. It shocked the gaming industry last week, when it announced SteamOS and a Steam Controller. Perhaps the launch of Valve-branded hardware could be the perfect time to finally sate fans' thirst for more Freeman.