So who wants to see what Source 2 looks like?

Modding & Development Source

You ever notice how just as the community starts to drop down into the dumps, something comes completely out of left field and gives us something to talk about again? Funny how that happens with Valve…

So who wants to see what Source 2 looks like?

This may not be the Source 2 reveal we were looking for, but I’ll damned if it isn’t nice to see! – An image of a Power Point presentation file was posted on NeoGaf yesterday by the user “crazy buttocks on a train” or CBOAT as some of you know may him as. The file depicts a number of slides created for a confidential Valve presentation about their next generation game engine – or current generation if you want to be really technical (anal) about it. More specifically, these slides show a heavily revamped version of the plantation from the Swamp Fever finale in Left 4 Dead 2.

Click to view full size

Click to view full size

Yes, these screenshots are of Left 4 Dead 2. Not Left 4 Dead 3, 2! The slide clearly states that, so don’t start getting excited about this being a Left 4 Dead 3 leak. But it’s just about as exciting as one, no doubt about that! It’s long been known that Left 4 Dead 2’s code base was used as a test bed for Source 2’s features. As evidenced by Tom Leonard’s CV. The slides compare the Source 1 render to the new Source 2 render and the differences are dramatic. It appears to be using an improved version of the shadow engine that we’ve seen in CS: GO and shows off a variety of high-poly models and dense foliage. Not much else can be discerned from the screenshots themselves since only one is of significant size and isn’t very high resolution to begin with. The final slide that is visible does reveal four lines of text that appear to discuss the tools and work flow for Source 2:

-Powerful GUI front end for content authoring
-Can be easily extended with custom and per-game tools*
-Browser for quickly finding, managing, editing assets
-Simple, automatic compiling of content


*EDITOR’S NOTE: This line is not particularly clear in the picture. This is just an estimate of what it actually says.

This should come as a relief to content makers and mappers who’ve had to deal with Source’s archaic compiling methods and asset management. This is more or less all that the photo can tell us at the moment, though. However, shortly after our friends over at posted their report on the discovery, an anonymous user (screen name: ukuuku) posted an additional in-game screenshot from the presentation at a much higher resolution in the comments section. Also stating in another comment that the “Presentation PowerPoint is from 2011 by the way. Filelist is legit.” The “filelist” presumably referring this screenshot of a Source 2 file list that was posted on Facepunch the same day. This list has been stated by others to be legitimate, but a reputable source for this information has yet to be identified.


The second screenshot does give us a better look at the same scene; depicting some liberal use of higher resolution textures and what appears to be some tessellation. Also it seems rather safe to say that the shadow quality is in fact of a higher caliber than what we have seen in CS: GO. Some assets from Left 4 Dead 2 do seem to be included in the map along with a number of newer models. Which shows that this isn’t a proper demo of Source 2’s capabilities, but most likely showcasing how content can be ported and updated in the new engine. As supported by the final slide in the picture leaked by CBOAT.

Coupled with the fact that this is just a testbed and is believed to be two to three years old, this is an impressive and relieving peek into what we could be seeing from Valve’s games in the future. If evidence about a proper SDK coming with Source 2 is in fact accurate, the modding community is likely going to be very, very happy. How long from now that future will be, is uncertain. What is certain… is that Source 2 is starting to look pretty damn good.


  1. Even though I’m exited about all this I just feel glad that the only thing that got leaked was a screen of a power point about source 2(considering that this is legit). The last thing we need is to something rather major like source 2 or one of valve’s upcoming games to get leaked for real, like hl2 with the source code being stolen or the portal 2 cave johnson’s leaked quotes.

  2. Commenter Avatar[λG] ThePerson529 January 2014 at 2:44am

    This actually looks very impressive. I’m just hoping Source 2 is as well optimized as Source 1, so as to not alienate low-end users. That was one of the things I liked best about the Source engine.

    • I don’t think Valve would every dream of alienating a sizable chunk of their userbase. Wild guess: they’ll make it so if you can run Portal 2 effectively, you should be able to run Source 2 games at bare minimum. That is based on absolutely nothing and is probably inaccurate as hell…but it’s my gut feeling and I’m stickin’ to it. 🙂

      When Half Life 2 came out, it put a fair amount of stress on a lot of peoples’ computers, but still supported DirectX 6 if I’m not mistaken. I don’t think many people will “have” to upgrade their systems to play HL3 or L4D3…but they’ll probably want to.

  3. Anyone think Source 2 will have VR support built-in? That’d be wicked cool.

    • If it doesn’t, I would be shocked beyond belief. Considering Valve have their very own VR technology.

  4. This notice is old… I mean, very very old. This was on internet six months ago… I thought it was fake, since I haven’t see anything about it here. Ok…

    • What do you mean this is old? This leak happened less than a month ago.

      • I saw it in a brazilian forum of games in November of 2013… Everybody said it was fake, so nobody gave attention.

  5. This is Awesome 😀