The Half-Life 3 "Call for Communication" event this past weekend was a success, but not nearly as big as it could have been.
The call went out to Half-Life fans last week, inviting them to fire up the ol' Half-Life 2 at 2 pm EST this past Saturday, February 4, not just to waste some Combine but to make a point with Valve: we love Half-Life and we're tired of being kept in the dark. It's been almost five years since Episode Two, after all. That's a long time for an "episode."
The response was impressive, as the Half-Life 2 player count, after not cracking the 2000 player mark since the summer of 2011, jumped from around 3000 to 13,216 over a single 30-minute period on Saturday and came one spot shy of breaking into the top ten Steam games for the day. On the downside, that number is just over one-third of the roughly 36,000 members the group boasted when in the middle of last week, a number that has since gone up to over 52,000.
"Our primary goal was to unite Half-Life fans in a unique and interesting way, and that was accomplished. Whether or not Valve will respond has yet to be determined; however, seven years after the release of Half-Life 2, over 13,000 fans have returned to play it again, together. That means something," the group founder wrote. "I am personally impressed with what we've achieved today. We're nowhere near done -- in fact, we are currently in the process of planning new activities; this was only our first attempt, and, in my eyes, was a success for everyone."
The real measure of success will be a response from Valve with some useful information about the future of the Half-Life franchise. That hasn't happened yet, but here's hoping that the player spike - and similar, bigger spikes in the future - will be enough to get someone's attention and get the wheels turning.