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Data miner claims Valve's next game blends Overwatch, TF2, and Dota 2—and we might see it this year

Jun 28, 2023

The new project has reportedly been a major focal point for Valve.

When it comes to multiplayer first-person shooters and MOBAs, Valve has really cornered a significant portion of the market between Counter-Strike, Team Fortress 2, and Dota 2. The company's next major release, though, is supposedly an audacious blend of genres that we could very well see some time in 2023.

Valve is working hard on Neon Prime, a sci-fi-oriented third-person "MOBA-lite" that looks like "Overwatch mixed with TF2 mixed with Dota 2," according to information from Valve data miner Tyler McVicker.

The closest comparison McVicker offers to Neon Prime is the third-person MOBA title SMITE from Hi-Rez Studios, but "way more polish, and a way better art style." He claims it will feature a lot of world destruction and randomness on a map that's so huge, "you need to take a train in order to fast travel to different points around it."

McVicker has reported on the project before when it went by the codename Citadel. Back in March 2022, he reported on some early details of the game that he referenced again today: a team-based, class-based game with a system that allows players to command other units with sci-fi elements inspired by the Combine from the Half-Life series. In that earlier report, McVicker accurately reported that Valve was working on porting CS:GO to the Source 2 engine.

Related: CS:GO fans convinced CS2 is nearly here after Valve loads up ‘hackerone’ update

McVicker says there's a focus on the classes being their own personalities and added that the DNA of Team Fortress 2: Brotherhood of Arms, the original scrapped sequel to the first Team Fortress game before a new sequel was built on the Source engine, "lives inside of [Neon Prime]."

As for when fans could potentially see Neon Prime for the first time, McVicker claims there's a closed beta taking place externally "as we speak" and that there are currently people outside of Valve with access to the game, adding that he thinks "we’re going to hear about it before the end of the year."

VALORANT lead staff writer, also covering CS:GO, FPS games, other titles, and the wider esports industry. Watching and writing esports since 2014. Previously wrote for Dexerto, Upcomer, Splyce, and somehow MySpace. Jack of all games, master of none.

Related: CS:GO fans convinced CS2 is nearly here after Valve loads up ‘hackerone’ update