Valve’s next game appears to be Deadlock, a MOBA hero shooter

Valve’s next game appears to be Deadlock, a MOBA hero shooter

According to a pair of content creators, the wait for a new Valve game is almost over: A third-person hero shooter called Deadlock is in closed alpha and an announcement seems imminent.

The game has apparently been in the works since 2018, with IceFrog, a developer synonymous with the original DotA mod, in charge. It’s reportedly what became of the Neon Prime project that has been rumored for a couple of years. Tyler McVicker, a veteran Valve reporter, and the content creator Gabe Follower, have this week both independently confirmed the game is in an advanced state of development.

“In terms of scope,” McVicker says, “this is meant to be Valve’s next major competitive game. The next Counter-Strike. The next Dota.” He describes it as Valve’s attempt to bring the company’s various game communities together, with precise gunplay and the laning objectives of a MOBA. McVicker describes it as looking “like Valorant, Overwatch, Dota 2 and Team Fortress 2 had a baby.”

The new title is apparently based in a “fantasy setting mixed with steampunk,” a marked shift from prior reports on the project that described Neon Prime as sci-fi inspired. Gabe Follower posted four screenshots on X which show something a little more subdued than the Overwatch and Valorant comparisons might imply.

The images show six vs. six gameplay across four lanes — suggesting a mix of solo lanes and two vs. two action across the map. It also shows ‘transit lines’ that can get players back to lane faster, like League of Legends’ hex gates. McVicker says these transit lines are inspired by BioShock: Infinite’s Sky-Hook system.

Outside of Counter-Strike 2 and Half-Life: Alyx, it’s been a hell of a long time since Valve released an all-new, big-scope title, and it’s been even longer since the company launched an all-new IP. McVicker says Deadlock is currently in a closed alpha, with “hundreds” of people playing. Of course, this is Valve, so it’s never too late for the project to be killed. But with June traditionally being a big month for video game news, it’s not impossible we’ll hear something official soon.

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