The head honchos over at Valve have been spilling their guts to PC Gamer recently in a string of interviews. When the issue of how fast Left 4 Dead 2 turned around came up — a rather sensitive subject to many — Valve CEO Gabe Newell didn’t rule out the possibility of that occurring again.
“I’m sure at some point we’re going to do it again,” he explained. “The point is we learned something about that, which is… your point earlier was that we surprise our customers, and there’s a certain amount of entertainment value in that.”
It seems that the word “surprise” and Valve are finding themselves together a lot lately these days. Newell went on to elaborate: “But then there’s also a certain amount of fear value in that, because the traditional surprise in the gaming industry is not ‘Oh, I’m surprised: something good happened!
“The traditional surprise is ‘Oh, I’m surprised: X-Fire just got bought again and went away.’ ‘Oh, I’m surprised because something horrible has happened to a franchise that I’ve been following since I was a little kid.
“The average surprise is negative, not positive, and so if we’re going to surprise people we need to be conscious of that fact. Because we’re going to continue to surprise.”