Valve Corporation

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Video captures courtesy of Combine OverWiki and pepperkun

: Valve Corporation is an American video game developer and distributor that was founded in 1996 in Bellevue, Washington. They are best known for their 1998 debut product, Half-Life, and the Steam digital distribution platform. They are also known for the Counter-Strike series, the Team Fortress series, the Left 4 Dead series, the Portal series, and the Day of Defeat series.

1st Logo
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Nickname: "The Valve"

Logo: We zoom in over the exterior of a big dark gray building (sort of like a jail or factory), and go through one of the windows. We see a shirtless bald man wearing long pants(mrvalve.mdl)getting ready to pull a lever that starts-up a letterpress-esquemachine. He puts his profile on the base and when the press (which has the Valve logo on it) goes over his head, it plants a dark red valve (spiggot.mdl) on the side of his head. He gets up, strangely without any ache or pain whatsoever as if nothing happened.

FX/SFX: GoldSrc animation. The map, titled "valve.bsp", was designed by Greg Coomer, Steve Theodore designed the models, and Doug Wood provided the animations. This concept, "Open your mind", was eventually used in-game in 2006.

Music/Sounds/Trivia:"<a href="" target="_self">Hazardous Environments</a>", a song composed for the company's first video game:Half-Life.It is hard to hear it without headphones or listening closely, however. Associating factory background sounds can also be heard.

Availability: It was only used as a tech demo for the GoldSrc engine.

Editor's Note: Nice animation showcasing the GoldSrc engine, although the concept can scare people off.

2nd Logo
Valve (1998-2000)
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Nicknames: "Open Your Eyes", "(Scary) Valve Man", "The Valve II"

Logo: On a black background, we see a fading-in sepia tone picture of a young man with black slick back hair with a goatee looking at the camera with a red valve sticking out of his left eye. After the picture fades in, a white box outline fades in in the bottom right corner of the picture, containing the word "VALVE" where the "E" is a superscript. Both the picture and the text then fade out slightly faster than the speed they faded-in.

Trivia: The man in the picture was that of a former Valve employee (possibly Mike Harrington). Both this picture of the man and the picture used in the next logo were taken between 1995 and 1996. The concept for this logo is "Open your eyes".

Variant: For Half-Life 2, the color of this logo has been toned down from its original sepia, the fade-in and fade-out are smoother, "trembling" effects are added to the photo and copyright stamps follow the fade-out.

FX/SFX: The picture and text fading-in and out, the intentional choppiness.

A fragment of Hazardous Environmentplays.

Availability: Uncommon. Seen on the non-Steam, original CD versions of Half-Life and Counter-Strike
. The color toned variant is seen on the originalHalf-Life 2. Sadly, Steam versions of Half-Life 2 use the next logo, while Steam versions of Half-Life and Counter-Strike have no logo at all. However, the logo can be seen after the credits of Half-Life 2: Episode One, just before a trailer for Half-Life 2: Episode Two, on both the original CD and Steam versions (though it can't be seen on the PS3 and 360 versions, included in The Orange Box) since the trailer is omitted from those versions). Can also be seen on the Xbox versions of Half-Life 2,Counter-Strike,and Codename Gordon. This logo was going to be used in Counter-Strike: Condition Zero(as evidenced by this logo's AVI file inside the game's directory), but never ended up being used for some reason.

Editor's Note: The concept is creative, but the picture of the man along with the disturbing, ominous music can unnerve many players,although this was arguably intentional. However, this logo is a favorite of many.

3rd Logo
(2006- )
Valve Corperation "Open Your Mind" 2006
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: "Open Your Mind", "(Scary) Valve Man II", "The Valve III", "Coach from Left 4 Dead 2"

: On a black background, we see a fading-in sepia tone picture of a man's bald head (with most of his head and face silhouetted by darkness) with a red valve sticking out of it. Similar to the previous logo, after the picture fades in, a white box outline fades in in the bottom right corner of the picture, containing the word "VALVE" where the "E" is a superscript. Both the picture and the text then fade out slightly faster than the speed they faded in. On some games, the logo is followed by another logo saying "powered by source" (Valve's game engine) with an orange symbol surrounding the "E" and copyright stamps below.

Trivia: The man in the picture was randomly picked off of the street to pose for this picture. His name was never verified. This logo's concept was, "Open your mind".

Variant: On Counter-Strike: Global Offense beta,Dota 2, and the Steam version of Portal 2 (after the Perpetual Testing InitiativeDLC release in May 2012), the man in the picture (slightly more live-actioned) briefly turns his head towards the camera near the end of the logo before cutting back to normal. The picture also fades in and fades out at the same speed. In addition, the Valve print logo (with the box outline and the letters now in a light tan color) doesn't fade into the picture or fade out with the picture, it instead fades in and out (via "wipe" effect) by itself after the picture fades out. This will presumably be seen on future games from the company.

FX/SFX: Same as before, but the trembling effects is increased.

Music/Sounds: Same as before.On the variant, the music was edited.

Availability: Seen on all Valve games from Half-Life 2: Episode One onward. The "turning head" variant appears in the aforementioned games above.

Editor's Note:
  • Original Variant: Like its predecessor, the picture along with the disturbing, ominous music can unnerve many players, but this logo is nowhere near as freaky-looking as the first one was.
  • "Turning Head" Variant: Although this was arguably intentional, the once-still picture of the man now turning his head towards the camera is bound to surprise players used to the original variant as well as first-time viewers. The retained ominous music doesn't help matters.
But as normal, the concept is intentional and creative, and it is also a favorite of many.

4th Logo (VR Variant)

Nicknames: "Look Around", "Open Your Eyes II", "The Valve IV"

Logo: In a room filled with red valves, we see the Valve logo in white and 3D. Everything that happens involves you looking around in your VR headset.

FX/SFX: You moving your head around with the VR headset. Otherwise, the whole room gradually lights up and brown smokes emerges. You can actually touch the valve that is hanging on the platform that you're standing, but it doesn't do anything.

Music/Sounds: Eerie factory sounds, mixed with the same fragments ofHazardous Environmentfrom the previous logos.

Availability: Seen on HTC Vive or Steam VR games made by Valve, such as The Lab. It is not seen on Half-Life: Alyx, instead replaced with the 5th logo.

Editor's Note: The room may feel unwelcoming, but with you being able to look all around, most might find this to be a really cool logo.

5th Logo (VR Variant)

Valve (2020)

Nicknames: "Open Your VR Mind", "(Scary) Valve Man II", "The Valve IV"

: Similar concept to the 2nd logo, now in 3D. In a dark room, we see fading in the same bald guy from the third logo, however now in 3D and in a much darker environment.
Aredbox is shown with the text"VALVE" with the E in superscript.

FX/SFX: Similar to before, however now in 3D and without the trembling effects. Really nice modeling work done on the logo.

Music/Sounds: Same as the third logo.

Availability: Brand new. First shown onHalf-Life: Alyx and may be shown on newer VR games from Valve.

Editor's Note: TBA