ValveTime reports that they’ve unearthed a picture of senior art director at Valve, Jeremy Bennett, wearing a Half-Life 3 T-shirt. The catch? The picture dates from July 2011, as it was taken at the San Diego Comic Con 2011. Though they initially provided no source for the picture’s origin at all, we have managed to locate it (after some tinkering), and we can confirm that the picture in question is, in fact, real.
The original, uncropped, full-size picture was posted on the 14th of July, 2011, on the White Cloud Worlds blog (it’s the second picture down the page, captioned “New friends from New York“). In case you didn’t know, Jeremy Bennett is a featured artist in White Cloud Worlds, a series of anthology volumes bringing together New Zealand’s finest science-fiction and fantasy artwork.
Jeremy only appears in this picture, but in it he is clearly wearing a black T-shirt with the “λ³” logo emblazoned upon it, and with the words “Half-Life 3” written directly under it; while pictured with other designers featured in the White Cloud Worlds anthologies, who attended SDCC 2011. Here is the picture:
Though Jeremy only joined Valve in 2006, he was heavily involved with the development of Half-Life 2: Episode Two, and he also created the only three publically-released concept art pieces of HL2: Episode Three. Curiously, his entry on the People section of Valve’s official website states that he is working on “several to be announced titles“. I’d say he’d definitely be a part of the HL3 team.
The interesting thing is, this is not the same T-shirt as the supposed HL3 T-shirt supposedly seen by an Uber Entertainment developer in December of 2011 – not only have the positions of the number 3 and the Lambda logo been switched around; but the font the number 3 is written in isn’t even the same in both pictures. The veracity of the December ’11 T-shirt has always been a matter of dispute, but this time it’s been placed under even greater scrutiny. It’s not unreasonable to suggest that the HL3 logo might have undergone certain changes between July and December, but all things considered, it might be grasping at straws, at this point.
Well, in any case, what we know is this: as early as July 2011, Valve was producing Half-Life 3 T-shirts for some of its employees. The rest of the story is up to you, as always.
Source is the White Cloud Worlds blog.