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Half-Life 2 for Mac killed over money?

updated 10:20 am EDT, Mon October 8, 2007

$1 mil wanted Half-Life 2

Half-Life 2 might not have been ported to Mac OS X because Valve Software, whose co-founder Gabe Newell last week said that Apple isn't serious about gaming, demanded a $1 million advance from any firm that wanted to port the game. A new report from IMG claims that Apple met with Valve regarding a port, and the developer insisted that that anyone who wanted to port Half-Life 2 to the Mac had to pay the hefty sum (for a small Mac developer, anyway) up front. Half-Life 2 never made it to Mac OS X, though users have had success running the title on Intel-based Macs under Windows in Boot Camp and without Windows using CrossOver.

In an interview last week, Newell detailed the process of speaking to Apples, explaining the drawn out process.

"We tried to have a conversation with Apple for several years, and they never seemed to... Well, we have this pattern with Apple, where we meet with them, people there go 'wow, gaming is incredibly important, we should do something with gaming.' And then we'll say, 'Okay, here are three things you could do to make that better,' and then they say 'Okay,' and then we never see them again," Newell explained, adding "I just don't think they've ever taken gaming seriously. And none of the things developers ask them to do are done," "

Valve's debut title Half-Life has won more than 50 Game of the Year awards and was named "Best PC Game Ever" on three separate occasions by PC Gamer magazine. Valve is also responsible for relesing Half-Life 2, Counter-Strike, Day of Defeat, Team Fortress, and Portal.

by MacNN Staff





  1. dscottbuch

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Newell not serious

    Seems the Newell is not serious about the Mac, not the reverse. $1 million, while not a ridiculous amount, is ridiculous when demanded up front.

  1. scottnichol

    Joined: Dec 1969


    aren't these guys...

    aren't these guys the ones who had their entire code base for the game stolen just weeks prior to release?

    gosh, get yourself a couple quad-core MacPros and get to work porting it yourself. then promote the heck out of it. seems like there's money to be made there.

  1. zaghahzag

    Joined: Dec 1969


    the best valve game

    Is counterstrike, which wasn't even done by them, just a mod to their engine.

    So who cares?

  1. Deal

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Time will tell...

    As Macs gain in market share and especially in colleges, it won't be long before he takes the chip off his shoulder and starts releasing Mac games.

    Then it will be, "the Mac is great for gaming".

  1. I.P. Freely

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Someone go tell Blizzard

    Well he better go tell this to Blizzard. They are wasting their time on Wold of Warcraft by developing the game concurrently on Mac and PC.

    Oh wait, they have the best selling computer game of all time. Never mind.

  1. ViktorCode

    Joined: Dec 1969



    I understood what Gabe Newell was speaking about when he talked about being serious. Being serious about the gaming is to give millions to Valve. Since Mac controls just fraction of market share Gabe decided to be generous and asked for just one million. Greedy Apple! They declined the offer unlike ATI who gave 4 millions to Valve during HL2 development, those are guys are serious!

    Serious indeed, Gabe, you tell them!

  1. DesiSoftSystems

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Bizzarro Company!

    I've never heard of a company charging a developer to port their product, and I know of no developer who would pay a company for the "privilege" to port their code. Real software companies PAY developers to port their code, they do not CHARGE them.

    Guess they're incorporated on the Bizzarro World!

  1. just a poster

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Half Life 2 was never

    going to make it as a port. It's built on Microsoft's proprietary, Windows-only DirectX API, not OpenGL (like the Quake/Doom/id engine-based games) and consequently porting would have been more costly, time-consuming and performance would have been a factor.

    Maybe next time Valve invests the millions it takes to make a 3d game engine, it will have the foresight to select a non-proprietary platform so that it can more easily port across multiple platforms.

    DirectX = crappy Windows-only API controlled by a convicted monopolist. I know Gabe is attached to Microsoft because he's an ex-softie.

    OpenGL = open source, open API that works on ALL platforms, including Vista, MacOS X, Linux, PSP, PS2, PS3, xbox, xbox360, Nintendo, etc.

  1. audiot

    Joined: Dec 1969


    I believe Valve

    Gabe Newell doesn't need the crappy Mac game market--a market decimated by Apple, due to underpowered hardware.

    If you had the best game ever, why would you port it to the Mac for free?

    Go back to playing Bejeweled, folks.

  1. ajhoughton

    Joined: Dec 1969



    AFAIK Valve was started by some guys who left Microsoft, took id software's engine (I forget exactly which version; Quake II I think).

    As I understand it, they were very pro-DirectX (and presumably pro-Microsoft) when they left MS and they're probably very pro-DirectX now also. My guess is that they keep asking for DirectX support on the Mac, which is something that Apple probably shouldn't do (why hand the keys to the gaming market completely to Microsoft?).

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