"three pretty big surprises" coming over the next 12 months from Valve, noting average reaction is "negative, not positive".
They want to avoid a Left 4 Dead 2 sequel-level of reaction, where some fans cried
"I’m sure at some point we’re going to do it again, 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," said Gabe Newell, referring to a quick delivery of a sequel. Left 4 Dead 2 came just 8 months after the first game released.
"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,” continued the boss.
"Yeah. 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. We have three pretty big surprises in the next twelve months, at least."
"We have three surprises. I’m talking about surprises, not the surprises themselves. But we’re going to do three things that have the potential to… that will be novel. And if we don’t make sure that people understand what we’re doing, they could easily respond in a Left 4 Dead 2 kind of way. Like, “What the hell?” right? And we just need to be good about that."
"We also have to be conscious of the fact that there are a lot of different people that we talk to. Like, there’s people who are really close to us and trust us, and there are other people who play our games and that are more sceptical," added Newell.
"And you need to make sure you’re talking to both of those groups in clear enough fashion, to make sure that just because one group is happy and on board, it doesn’t mean the other groups are going to be." How did you react to Left 4 Dead 2's unveiling?