Though most folks know that Episode Three of Half-Life 2 has been in limbo for years upon years at this point, casual observers are probably less familiar with Return to Ravenholm, a Half-Life 2-related game often called Episode Four that was in development at one point several years ago with Arkane Studios (now of Dishonored fame) attached. Scant details from the canned project have come out since that time, but the folks at ValveTime have gotten their hands on some new screenshots from it.

ValveTime's created a spotlight video that, well, spotlights the screenshots they've obtained, but the gist is that Robert Wilinski, "a Senior Environment Artist at Arkane Studios between 2007 and 2008" as described by the group, had included them in a personal portfolio. That puts Wilinski in the perfect timeframe to work on Return to Ravenholm, among other projects. A personal portfolio for one Robert Wilinski exists at ArtStation with an entirely empty Arkane Studios section, which is possibly where ValveTime obtained them originally.

The screenshots themselves are fairly tame, with many showing the same environment from different angles. Even so, it's a nice look at what could have been. This isn't the first time Return to Ravenholm details have come to light, but it's a fairly large cache of screenshots for something that's been dead so long. Fans have been quick to jump on almost anything related to the Half-Life franchise from screenshots of canceled offshoots to digging through the files of each Steam update—just in case.

Ravenholm, of course, was an abandoned town featured in the Half-Life 2 base game. The last official Half-Life 2 standalone product, Episode Two, was released on Oct. 10, 2007. The episode ended with a tease for a third, seemingly set in the Arctic. At the time, Valve continued to promise that it was coming, but it's simply stopped talking about it altogether with years between official mentions.

Via: Polygon

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