Exclusive interview with Half Life’s Gordon Freeman!
When Gordon Freeman’s agent called me with an exclusive interview opportunity, I was- understandably, I think you will agree- as excited as a puppy with a bog roll.
It’s no secret that Doctor Freeman rarely gives interviews, often shunning the limelight and performing promotional duties only when necessary. Hoping to get the scoop on the state of the Half Life franchise, I met with Gordon at Valve’s office in Bellevue.
I’d already gone through two cups of water due to nerves before Gordon appeared. I smiled to myself when I realised that somehow, I was expecting him to be wearing the HEV suit. Instead he wore a simple shirt and trousers, white and black- as if he had just come in from the office. A pair of pens in his shirt pocket spoke of his orderly mind, but a lack of tie spoke of the man who had become a rock star of the game industry.
“Hi, Doctor Freeman. It’s a pleasure to meet you!” I began. Gordon said nothing, just nodded and smiled, shaking my hand. I noted that he had kept the iconic goatee in check and was sporting a strong physique- staying in shape for the production of HL: Episode 3?
“Can I call you Gordon?” I asked nervously. He nodded. “I have to ask, on behalf of fans everywhere- where are we at with Episode 3?”
Gordon smiled awkwardly and looked around the room. He eventually sighed and shrugged.
“It’s been years since Episode 2. Valve pioneered the idea of the episodic game, merging DLC with expansion pack to make a game played in chapters, allowing them to chop up a larger game into segments. We were all interested by the idea that it would allow them to be more adaptive, responding to feedback as it came. Not to mention the narrative options. So after two great episodes that end with a cliffhanger… where is Episode 3? Graphics have moved on a lot since then… are we to understand that the episodic model is being scrapped in favour of a full Half Life 3?”
He shook his head and raised an eyebrow. I sensed that he didn’t want to talk about it.
“Okay, just one question then: will the events of Portal be meeting those of Half Life?”
Gordon laughed and wagged a finger.
“Fine, fine. There were rumours for a while of a Half Life movie. I personally can’t help but notice the similarities between you and Walter White from the TV show Breaking Bad. The goatee, the glasses, the fury. How would you feel about Brian Cranston portraying you?”
Gordon shrugged and nodded. I began to wonder if there was really much point in interviewing a mute.
“Okay, so one last question. Can we expect wedding bells for you and Alyx Vance?”
I think I touched a nerve- Gordon shook his head and started waving his arms. He stood and brusquely left the room. I suppose we’ll have to wait and see. On his way out of the door, I noticed that he was using his left hand. Repetitive crowbar strain? I hesitate to speculate.
Not the interview I wanted, but a fascinating insight into the mind of a treasure of the gaming world. His work will speak for itself- we must continue to be patient.