An online article that claims to have confirmed the release date for Half-Life 3, and directly quotes a developer working at Valve, has been described as a fake by the Washington studio.
John Guthrie, a developer who has been working at Valve since 1997, was purportedly quoted by games blog NSS as saying:
"I can't confirm all too much since the development is still in early stages, but for now I can confirm that we are going to release on both current and next generation consoles and we will also release the game on our own platform exclusively for PC and Mac. We hope to have the first trailer ready for E3 2014".
A spokesperson for Valve, having reviewed the matter, has told CVG the article is "bogus".
The report was disregarded by the vast majority of news outlets, but the rumour had spread across public forums and social networks.
Valve has not issued any details of its next Half-Life project. In the five and a half years since the release of Half-Life 2 Episode 2, the company has only indirectly commented on the project.
In December 2011, Valve's Chet Faliszek called for calm when the Steam community was gripped by a fever of speculation that the company had begun a Half-Life 3 ARG.
"There is no ARG. There has been no directive from Gabe to leak anything. That is all false," Faliszek said.
His comments suggested that Valve has no intention of teasing its customers in the months or years ahead.
"I just want to say this so there is no confusion - This is the community trolling the community, nothing more. While it is nice to see people excited about anything HL, I hate seeing people be trolled like this."