For the Spike TV Video Game Awards, each company with a character that’s been nominated for the “Character of the Year” award has to create two shorts using in-game content. One for their nomination, and one as an acceptance speech in the event that they win. Sadly, while he was nominated for the award, Wheatley did not win CotY. But Valve have released their never-before-seen acceptance short, and it includes a very interesting hint that indicates we might be seeing something big on the singleplayer front from Valve in 2012.
Pretty great! Wheatley gets his award, but he doesn’t get to keep it, as he is pushed back into the depths of space, presumably towards Earth. And it’s also a bit fitting: Wheatley doesn’t actually get to keep his trophy, so to speak, just as in the end, he never did receive the award. Keep in mind that in terms of canonicity towards the Portal universe and continuum, both of these shorts are non-canon.
However, there is something extremely interesting in this video. Something that we can’t just write off as a non-canon tidbit. The last words in this short come from Wheatley, who, upon noticing that he doesn’t get to keep the award, says: “Ah, maybe next year”. Now, I don’t know about you, but that doesn’t just sound like an empty phrase to me.
As some of you might know, no multiplayer-only video game character has ever been nominated for the VGA’s “Character of the Year” award in any past edition of the show. So, obviously, if Valve was to win CotY “next year”, they’d have to release a singleplayer game during 2012, one that we don’t know about yet. Because no character in either Dota 2 or CS:GO, the only Valve titles that we officially know will be coming out in 2012, seems like a decent contender for CotY, and I’m sure Valve is completely aware of that. Of course, there’s one Valve game franchise that’s known especially for its excellent characters. And excellent characters is exactly what would win “Character of the Year” in the 2012 VGA’s.
So… “what might this game be?”, I hear you ask? Well, I think we already know the answer to that question. I very seriously doubt Valve will be announcing another major game prior to revealing a new Half-Life game, so the answer might seem obvious: this unannounced 2012 singleplayer game that Valve believes might even win “Character of the Year”, might just be… well, I have absolutely no idea, but I certainly hope it’s something good.