Half-Life 2: Episode 4 footage emerges a decade after it was canceled

(Image credit: Valve/Arkane)

New footage of Half-Life 2: Episode 4 has emerged in the trailer for an Arkane Studios documentary.

While it was never officially announced, Half-Life 2: Episode 4 has become somewhat of a known quantity in the years since Valve and developer Arkane (now best known for Dishonored and Prey) abandoned the project. Statements from Valve employees as well as leaks have revealed that it was meant to be a side story that expanded the world of Half-Life beyond the initial trilogy of episodes, and that it would take the action back to the zombie-infested city of Ravenholm.

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Video game documentary group Noclip has now shown our first official look at footage from Arkane's early development efforts on Half-Life 2: Episode 4. The handful of clips show an unknown protagonist (who likely was not meant to be Gordon Freeman) battling zombies in dilapidated hallways and sewers. They also use a gun that fires electricity-conducting spikes to power an elevator's control panel and to turn a puddle into an enemy-vaporizing perimeter defense.

Also: none of the zombies seem to have headcrabs on them. That's weird, though it may just be because we're looking at early footage for the game. It's also unusual that we're even getting to see this footage, though I suspect Valve may have relaxed some of its secrecy around the series with Half-Life: Alyx finally out in the wild.

The full Noclip documentary is coming next week, so hopefully we'll get more answers about Half-Life 2: Episode 4 then.

Learn how Valve brought the beloved series soaring into the modern day with our look at the making of Half-Life: Alyx.

Connor Sheridan

I got a BA in journalism from Central Michigan University - though the best education I received there was from CM Life, its student-run newspaper. Long before that, I started pursuing my degree in video games by bugging my older brother to let me play Zelda on the Super Nintendo. I've previously been a news intern for GameSpot, a news writer for CVG, and now I'm a staff writer here at GamesRadar.