Much as we love Valve, we do wonder if they smashed a few mirrors whilst running under rows of ladders and rubbing black cats against their faces sometimes. Having managed to avoid major calamity since the infamous Half-Life 2 source code theft late last year, now it appears that the developer has accidentally uploaded a file containing all of the dialogue from Half-Life 2 to Counter-Strike: Source beta testers, according to reports originating with fansite HL2World.com.
Fortunately for Valve, this leak seems to be a bit more contained than the last one. The only people testing CS: Source at the moment should be subscribers to Valve's Cyber Café programme and various selected members of the press, but with a little searching these people will be able to uncover the dialogue, which is embedded in a .gcf file that was preloaded by content delivery system Steam along with the beta.
Since .gcf files aren't meant to be opened, presumably Valve imagined nothing would happen - but it seems that some modders have used the HL2 source leak and other means to reverse engineer the format and rip out the script, which contains numerous spoilers about the game including its surprise ending.
At the moment, Valve has yet to comment on the leak - or even confirm it - but a number of gamers have contacted Eurogamer claiming to have the document. If indeed the leak is confirmed, the only real comfort the developer can take from it is that it was identified at this stage of the CS: Source beta - before owners of Condition Zero and ATI coupons were given access to the game. With any luck, that's enough time to strip out the offending data and avoid widespread distribution.
According to most recent reports, Half-Life 2 is on track to go gold later this month and should be released worldwide in September at retail and over content delivery system Steam.