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Left 4 Dead 3 is a non-priority, according to Counter-Strike 2 files

Reanimated and ready to break hearts

Jokes about Valve’s inability to count to three practically write themselves, but in fairness, the publisher have reportedly reached the mythical number in Counter-Strike 2’s files. The mention of “Left4Dead3” was recently spotted in CS2’s files (thanks, Reddit) which sparked online speculation for a third game in the series. The files state that the “severity” is “high”, the “version” is “2”, but what about the “priority?” Bad news for fans of the run-and-gunning zombie shooter: according to the files, the priority is “none.”

This isn’t the first time there have been rumblings of a third Left 4 Dead. As we reported at the time, in 2020 HTC’s president Alvin Wang Graylin shared VR-related slides mentioning Left 4 Dead 3 alongside Half-Life: Alyx. This prompted Valve to declare that they were "absolutely not working on anything L4D related now, and haven't for years." Mentions of a Half-Life 3 and a Left 4 Dead 3 also popped up several years ago in the files for Portal VR, but Valve often recycles assets between projects, so the remains of a once-in-development L4D3 might be the culprit here.

It’s funny to think that Valve just enjoys trolling fans via obscure code names hidden in files, but sometimes they do become actual tangible games. Most recently, mentions of Counter-Strike 2 were found in CS:GO’s files, and - against all odds - Counter-Strike 2 was real, and it’s coming this summer. Even still, priority-none doesn’t instil much confidence that the project is imminent, or even in development.

In the Half-Life: Alyx - Final Hours documentary, we learned that Valve had actually been working on L4D3, but they eventually scrapped the project alongside another Half-Life shooter (not Alyx) and a Dark Soulsish RPG. Left 4 Dead 3 was said to be an open-world undead bonanza set in Morocco, and it was apparently cancelled due to the Source 2 engine’s limitations.

Valve have more recently stated that, yes, they do “definitely have games in development,” and we also know that other projects, like the ethereal Half-Life 3, have stopped and restarted development a handful of times. So, L4D3’s rotting corpse could potentially dig itself out of the grave, too, and barrel toward us with the speed of a Tank. Or this could all mean nothing - it's a wait-and-see situation. Hopefully not another 10-year wait, though.

About the Author
Kaan Serin avatar

Kaan Serin


Kaan is currently an English and Film student who spends more time thinking about food than his degree. Also, trying to cut down on sharing unprompted video game trivia.

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