So many things wrong. The plot for the episodes was laid down as far back as Half-Life 2, it just had to be broken up in the natural places. Marc Laidlaw did it all. Ep 2 is taking just as long to develop because the engine difficulties of making Source do open spaces and cinematic physics. Portal was finished a while back IIRC. It's TF2 and Ep2 which are slowing THAT down. Ep 2 is going to be 5 hours maximum, the same as Episode 1 (which took me 3 1/2 hrs). Portal has been completed by FPS noobs (literally, mums who've never played a game took part in the testing) in under four hours. That's $45 for maybe 8 hours of gameplay and TF2, which shouldn't have taken so damn long and was bundled in to make up value. Bear in mind that in the time it took Ep2 to be made, a single guy called Garry made all of Garry's Mod and progressed it from a community mod in version 8 all the way to a retail product called GMod 10. Then amateur modders used that to make SWEPS and replicate all of Portal that they could in a mod, whilst also developing dozens of multiplayer game types. They did that in their spare time. I'm not saying Valve are lazy or anything, but the don't fully understand what episodic means. It should be closer to 4 hours of gameplay every two or three months with just a single game that costs a proportionate amount. If 10-12 hours of HL2 cost £30 then Ep1 and 2 should cost about a tenner each and they should be regular, say 3 a year. As it is, they cost closer to £15 at start and then drop in price very fast, are very short and take far too long to develop bearing in mind that most of the textures and engine work is already in place. A company the size of Valve should be able to do things faster, IMO. They need to remember it was never the tech which pushed HL forwards (Hl1 was on the Quake 2 engine practically!), it was the story. Stop fiddling with the engine and give us more Freeman, more regularly.