If you've ever heard about Deus Ex, System Shock, and Thief, odds are it was from an old-school gamer who wouldn't shut up about how awesome those titles were—and probably how today's games don't even begin to compare. I have to admit, all three were pretty innovative and exceptional for their time. Interestingly, game designer Doug Church was involved with all of them.
Now he works at Valve. Church has reportedly been with the company for a few weeks now, although there's no word on what he's got his fingers into. Let's hope it's not a sequel to Backyard Wrestling: Don't Try This at Home, which Wikipedia lists as one of the games Church worked on while at Eidos. That was back in 2003, and more interesting things have been afoot since. Most recently, Church was working on a project with movie maker Steven Spielberg. The game was ultimately canned, but it sure sounds interesting.
Rock, Paper, Shotgun speculates that Church may be helping with long-awaited additions to the Half-Life franchise. Given how long they're taking to come out, the games could probably use the extra manpower. Part of me hopes that Valve gives Church a new project, whether it's a fresh spin on one of the company's existing properties or something new entirely. Dude has talent.