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Half-Life 3 Trademark Filed In Europe 150

jones_supa writes "A trademark application for Half-Life 3, possibly the next entry in Valve's excruciatingly dormant Half-Life franchise, has been filed in Europe, according to the Office for Harmonization in the Internal Market, the European Union's trademark and designs registry. The OHIM's database lists the Half-Life 3 trademark as owned by Valve Corporation, and filed on its behalf by Casalonga & Associés, a patent and trademark firm. The trademark covers 'computer game software,' 'downloadable computer game software via a global computer network and wireless devices' and other goods and services. The application was filed on Sept. 29. There is no equivalent trademark on record at the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office."
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Half-Life 3 Trademark Filed In Europe

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  • ...that HL3 is actually possible!

    • nah, it's most likely for intellectual property protection, rather than "HL3 CONFIRMED OMG VALVE CNA COUNT AFTER ALL LOL".
      • by James Sarvey ( 3348883 ) on Tuesday October 01, 2013 @06:23PM (#45008681)
        I believe that in IP law the trademark needs to actually be used sometime in the near future for it to be defensible. You can't just trademark a bunch of things for shits and giggles with no intention to use them. If you could, Valve would have trademarked HL3 a long time ago.
        • That being said, I'm pretty sure they already have a trademark on "Half-Life" and they really don't need to trademark the more specific Half-Life 3. It's not like you could just put out a game called "Half-Life 3" or "GTA 6" next month because the trademark holders on the previous game with a very similar title haven't bothered to file a trademark for the next game in the series.
          • Chances are the trademark also includes unreported logos and new variations of wording. Also there is the reported updated usage wording which lawyers feel make it necessary.

        • Yep. Not only do you have to use it for it to be defensible, but you have to actively defend it as well. Failing to take action to protect your trademark is legally implicitly agreeing that you no longer wish to retain exclusive ownership of that mark. That is why anybody can market their moving staircase contraption as an Escalator, and Otis Co. has no say in the matter anymore.

          • You have to use it within a certain amount of time after registration. In most places this is around 5 years.

            • by gl4ss ( 559668 )

              and actually... if they just create a holder page - give a press release or whatever - that is usage. maybe this means that in 5 years they announce it.

              but like someone already commented they have half-life already covered for a game related use.

              I've said it before and I'll say it again the problem with HL series is that it has no direction, nobody knows where the story is supposed to to go - nobody even inside valve knows the even the context of the story, background or anything. that's why hl2 and the epi

              • by dkf ( 304284 )

                but like someone already commented they have half-life already covered for a game related use.

                With trademarks, it helps to be very specific. In particular, it makes the unique mark far easier to defend in a civil court case.

              • Bingo, we have a winner! I love the hell out of the game but the story? Deep fried ass, sorry folks but it is. That thing has more loose threads than a sweater woven by a granny with Parkinson's and you can tell they have NO clue WTF the G-Man is supposed to be, who he works for, what he is supposed to do, it was probably thrown in there originally because of the whole X-Files/MIB thing back in the late 90s and then the fans latched on and they didn't know WTF to do with it other than just throw his ass in

    • by sd4f ( 1891894 ) on Tuesday October 01, 2013 @06:22PM (#45008671)
      I think HL3 might be used to launch steamOS, just like HL2 launched steam. Whether it will be exclusive to steamOS (like HL2 required steam), i have my doubts.
      • by James Sarvey ( 3348883 ) on Tuesday October 01, 2013 @06:33PM (#45008795)
        People keep bringing that idea up, but it seems really stupid to me. Installing a new OS is a non-trivial task for most people, and even most PC gamers I think. Throw in dual-booting with an existing Windows installation and you might as well ask them to fly to the moon. Valve's whole business model, the reason people swallow their DRM without complaining, is based on making your games go from the storefront to installed in your library with a few mouse clicks, and then keeping them all in one place. Requiring a dual-booted OS just for one game is the antithesis of that. It's everything people hated about EA's Origin magnified tenfold. Valve knows better.
        • I agree, Valve isn't likely to make it a SteamOS-only game...unless they're planning on using it as an incentive to get a SteamBox. As you said, ease of use is Valve's lifeblood. SteamBox satisfies that condition; SteamOS alone will always be for the tinkering DIYers, I think. As a further incentive, hey, there are already a bunch of Steam games that run under Linux, so it's less likely that they'd be buying the "console" "just for one game".
        • by Charliemopps ( 1157495 ) on Tuesday October 01, 2013 @07:08PM (#45009167)

          How much do you want to bet SteamOS can be launched via live CD? Who says that Live CD can't be the HL3 disc? Seems rather logical to me. If you get a digital download they could just put a "burn me a live CD" right in the steam client... or offer to install a boot loader for you. All very easy.

          • I'll bet you thousands of dollars it won't be. It would go completely against the point of Steam to then require you to burn the game and run it that way. The whole point of Steam is to not need CD media to install and run a game.

            • You don't need one. It's just an option. You can run it on windows, you can run it on linux, you can boot to the CD. Whatever you want.

          • There is an update and you must download and burn a new disc to continue playing this game.

            That, among many other reasons, is why such a thing would not work as a live CD. Messing with a user's bootloader when the user has no idea what that is is not "very easy". It is a sure path to failure.

            • You haven't used many live CDs have you? Yes you can run purely from the CD, and yes, then you can't save anything. But most allow you to save to hard disk just like any other OS. You can save your updates there, as well as your games. And the idea that "Messing around with the boot loader is not very easy" is just silly. every modern Linux distro out there offers to install a bootloader for you if you already have windows. It rarely causes problems and people who have no idea what they are doing successful

              • You haven't used many live CDs have you? Yes you can run purely from the CD, and yes, then you can't save anything. But most allow you to save to hard disk just like any other OS.

                I've used them extensively. Where is your live CD going to save stuff on the harddrive? Is it going to just make itself a partition? Or are you expecting gamers to figure this out without constantly breaking their machines?

                And the idea that "Messing around with the boot loader is not very easy" is just silly. every modern Linux distro out there offers to install a bootloader for you if you already have windows. It rarely causes problems and people who have no idea what they are doing successfully complete installs all the time.

                If you are installing Linux then you either have an idea of what a bootloader is or can quickly figure it out but most likely you have fairly intricate knowledge of how the bootloader works because you've had it broken multiple times in the past. If you work a lot with multi-boot syste

          • by Kaenneth ( 82978 )

            Also not all PCs have CD-ROM drives.

          • You know what the most popular upgrade among gamers now is? An SSD boot drive, because hard drives are too slow for us. Do you think anyone's going to regularly boot Steam off a medium slower and more sequential than a hard drive, when most gamers who can are fleeing towards SSDs at least for the boot drive?

            • Who said it would boot entirely off the CD? That's just the boot loader, which will then ask to either create a partition on your HDD or maybe just create a single file like PuppyOS does.

              Trust me, there are dozens of linux distros out there already doing this, it's crazy simple and you can hardly tell the difference between the live CD and a normal boot.

        • There's little point in dual-booting to SteamOS. SteamOS is aimed at Steambox computers that don't even have Windows.

        • by Inda ( 580031 )
          Put the DVD in the drive. Reboot. Click yes to everything.

          That's well within the "My dad could do this" spec.
        • I don't think they'd require SteamOS for anything. But it's not a secret that they'll be launching their own living-room console "soon". Having big game title exclusives to plug it with is standard tradecraft.

          And I don't mean "exclusive to the Steam console at the expense of Steam on a PC", I mean "exclusive to Steam at the expense of PS4, WiiU and XBone". The Steam console is pretty much exclusively a vehicle with which to get more people to buy games via the Steam store. Odds are Valve will even need to s

      • by jmke ( 776334 )
        more likely to launch SteamBox; a launch title that's exclusive to steam, not cross platform. to be be put on the shelve next to XBOX360+GTAV and PS4+GT7. SteamBox+HL3. would make console gamers post pictures of HL3 with subtext "most expensive game I've bought"; in reference to PC Gamers posting pictures of PS3/XBOX360 and GTA-V and stating the same :) getting people to buy a "console" for a game. The hook is in, the reel them in with steam on PC, play it on steamBOX and your laptop; cross platform (Mac,
    • Well, this [gearnuke.com] sort of jives with that. Massively.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday October 01, 2013 @06:17PM (#45008603)

    Half-Life 3 Confirmed

  • by DangerOnTheRanger ( 2373156 ) on Tuesday October 01, 2013 @06:18PM (#45008615) Homepage Journal
    We'll be left with no speculationware to joke about pretty soon, looks like.
    • by Anonymous Coward

      We'll always have the year of linux on the desktop. They won on servers, tablets and getting there on phones but still no desktop.

      • Dude. There's no more "year of the [anything] desktop" anymore. The desktop dominance is over. The Internet is no longer accessed in absolute majority by desktop computers. Most Internet devices are now phones, tablets, and other various devices. If anything, 2014 will be the year of the Android.

    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by Anonymous Coward

      There's always GNU\Hurd

    • We'll be left with no speculationware to joke about pretty soon, looks like.

      Compared to DNF, HL3 is a bit different though: Valve itself has yet not officially promised or advertised anything (unless you really want to count the cliffhanger at the end of HL2EP2). So it's only speculation among fans, unlike DNF which received a bunch of screenshots with a good dose of hype every now and then.

  • that's more encouraging than if they trademarked Half-Life Forever
  • Probably the actual news here: Another 3rd party graphics engine to be released soon. Tech demo will be charged for. Next generation of team fortress is here.

    Let's hope they do something different this time around...

  • by gapagos ( 1264716 ) on Tuesday October 01, 2013 @06:21PM (#45008653)

    Time, Dr. Freeman? Is it really that time again? It seems as if your trademark just arrived.

  • by cervesaebraciator ( 2352888 ) on Tuesday October 01, 2013 @06:21PM (#45008663)
    Early HL3 for users.
  • What happened to it? Some time ago, all the talk turned to HL3 instead.
    • by Anonymous Coward

      Valve originally stated they had plans to release new episodes for HL2 approximately every 6 to 8 months, with episodes 1 to 4 already planned. When this window passed without the third episode, many speculated that Valve had abandoned the episodic strategy and are working on an entirely new game.

      From an interview in 2006 [kotaku.com]

    • Since the release of Half-Life 2: Episode Two in October 2007, there has been very little news from Valve on the next Half-Life game. Half-Life 2: Episode Three, the third and final instalment of the Half-Life 2 episodes, was expected to follow soon after Episode Two, as Valve had stated that they aimed to release a new episode every six to eight months

      You don't call something released 7 years later a new episode.

    • No one outside valve is sure but the suspicions are that what was originally targeted to be episode 3 grew and evolved into a project too large to be called an "episode"

      • by Xest ( 935314 )

        So in other words, to put that in normal software development parlance, it was a victim of scope creep?

  • by Anonymous Coward

    Does this mean that, if someone had released a game called "Half-Life 3" before this trademark was filed, Valve wouldn't have been able to sue them for trademark infringement?

    If the answer is "yes, Valve would have been unable to sue" then the system is really prone to squatting.

    If the answer is "no, Valve could have successfully sued the maker of a game called 'Half-Life 3' based on Valve's ownership of the 'Half-Life' trademark," then why did they even bother filing? Doing so doesn't give them any new ca

    • I want a whiff of whatever youre smoking.

      Valve could have successfully sued the maker of a game called 'Half-Life 3' based on Valve's ownership of the 'Half-Life' trademark," then why did they even bother filing?

      Firstly, suing someone would cost many times over what simple trademark registration costs.

      Doing so doesn't give them any new capabilities (they can still effectively protect the name with their existing trademark registration), takes time and money, and forces them to give away information on a future product (e.g. allowing competitors plenty of time to act on the information, or reducing the time window when the project's existence is a secret and they can decide to delay or kill it without disappointing fans).

      Secondly, Valve would be dissapointing fans anyhow if they decided to kill off continuing half-life series regardless if they had never(still actually havent) announced it.

      Thirdly, I feel sorry for the poor EA CEO's and whatnot who didn't see Valve eventually possibly coming out with HL3.

  • Very much looking forward to this :) Although I think I might be more excited about SteamOS in general than HL3.
  • It needs to have full voice acting and performance capture.(think Beyond Two Souls) It will also need to bring in the people who never played the first two. The engine used in Portal 2 won't be good enough. Of course it could go with a retro ugly look and focus on story. That would be okay if the price was right.
    • When was the last time anyone in the mainstream focused on "the story?"

      The recipe usually goes something like:

      1. Find a dead horse
      2. Beat it
      3. scoop up the fetid remains and place in a horse shaped mold
      4. seal with CGI and plastic
      5. unmold
      6. beat it
      7. repeat steps 3 through 6 until no one will fund a remake
  • HL1 was great.
    HL2 was okay. Episode 1 was poop. Episode 2 was okay.
    HL3 will suck.

    It all makes sense, of course. With each Half Life there's only half of the original(ity) left.

  • Not in US? (Score:5, Funny)

    by Nethemas the Great ( 909900 ) on Tuesday October 01, 2013 @07:01PM (#45009101)

    There is no equivalent trademark on record at the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office.

    Maybe that's because their office is closed.

  • Half-Life 2: Episode 2, Part 2. 'cause everyone knows VALVe can't count to 3. On another note, I'm surprised they didn't have this already trademarked.
  • I can't believe no one has said it yet, but I guess I'll be the one.

    Damnit Gabe just take my fucking money. Take it now!

  • The story ran its course and Gordon won. The writing had gotten much less interesting than the first 3 parts. Episode 2 had the "rescue the girl" and "emotional daddy death" that I had predicted the instant I met those characters. It was still fun, but that ending was a slapped on setup for a sequel you'd expect from any franchise fishing for a reason.

  • by Kaenneth ( 82978 ) on Tuesday October 01, 2013 @10:46PM (#45010497) Homepage Journal

    I hope they can get the same voice actor for Gordon.

  • Since this is the perfect opportunity to answer a question I had for aeons: Why do media companies have to register trademark for their numbered sequels of their already registered franchises?

    It makes sense for a company like Square to trade mark a game like Chrono Cross (Chrono Trigger sequel) because its a different name. But for games like Half-Life, Final Fantasy, GTA, MGS, I just don't get it. If I, or anyone else no matter how rich, tried to independently release a game called Half-Life 3 I'm sure
  • I thought this was going to be the third of the recent three part Steam announcements. I think they were planning on releasing HL3 art but weren't ready to go yet and released the controller instead. HL3 as a packing would sell a million Streamboxes alone.
  • by Immerial ( 1093103 ) on Wednesday October 02, 2013 @09:31AM (#45013061) Homepage
    That's why Half-Life 3 can be produced now ;)

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