One of Valve’s most popular games may be about to get support for the next generation of the publisher’s game-making engine.
Valve is prepping an update for its Dota 2 multiplayer online arena battler that will include Source 2 content for Windows, Linux, and Mac, according to the website SteamDB. Source 2 is the next-gen version of the toolset that Valve coded and used to make games like Half-Life 2, Portal, and more. The company plans to release Source 2 for free to third-party developers.
We’ve asked Valve for more information about this, and we’ll update this story with its response.
The Source 2 content in Dota 2 is not yet live. Instead, the changelog on SteamDB reflects additions that Valve has made to the Dota 2 package without pushing them out to everyone that has the MOBA installed. It’s likely, however, that the Source 2 code will debut within the next few days — as that’s how Valve has pushed out updates in the past.
If you’re wondering what Source 2 support for Dota 2 means, you’re not alone. Valve hasn’t shared many details, but it has said previously that the engine does a better job at enabling community members to build and release content for games. Dota 2 makes a significant portion of its money from player-created items like hats and other cosmetics, and Source 2 could help that business grow even larger.
“Right now, we’re into rethinking games as a connected economy of virtual goods and services — and virtual reality,” Valve founder and chief executive officer Gabe Newell said way back in January 2014.
That strategy recently manifested itself in a rather disastrous attempt to enable folks who build modifications for the open-world role-playing adventure The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim to make money. Valve partnered with publisher Bethesdad to split revenue from mod sales with the people who decided to put their mods up on the Steam Workshop. It was a progressive attempt to make the “connected economy” a viable way for small developers to make a living, but gamers hated it, as it forced them to pay for homemade game content that was previously free.
Valve and Bethesda backpedaled on the paid-mods scheme, but it is still moving ahead with more ways to empower community creators and Source 2 could play a huge part in that.