There's a new 'Left 4 Dead' and it's in VR

A scene from the finale of 'Left 4 Dead 2'

Co-op zombie survival franchise "Left 4 Dead" could be coming back as a virtual reality project -- but there's no assurance the game will see the light of day.

"'Left 4 Dead VR' is real," according to Tyler McVicker, whose Valve News Network has become an essential stop-off for many fans of the often-mysterious game development company and its multiple franchises.

Valve Corporation owns and operates the Steam store, a computer gaming network and digital retailer, and both develops one of the world's biggest eSports titles, "Dota 2," which distributes tens of millions of dollars per year in tournament winnings.

Prior to "Dota 2," however, Valve was best known for a number of ongoing franchises, each of which helped redefine what video games were and could become: "Team Fortress 2," "Portal," "Half-Life,",[ "Counter-Strike" and "Left 4 Dead" among them.

Now that the "Half-Life" franchise is making a comeback through 2020's VR adventure "Half-Life: Alyx," speculation has turned to some of Valve's other dormant or semi-dormant franchises.

"Portal" is associated with the "Half-Life" universe, while "Counter-Strike" remains a feature of the eSports scene.

What about "Left 4 Dead"? The co-op action adventure, set during a zombie apocalypse, managed to transcend its genre boundaries by incentivizing teamwork and second-guessed players with an adaptive AI orchestrating events behind the scenes.

Its lineage can be traced through to the "Warhammer: End Times - Vermintide" games, co-op asteroid mining and alien repelling quest "Deep Rock Galactic," the "Call of Duty" zombies mode,and this week's squad-based survival horror "GTFO."

Now it seems that "Left 4 Dead" could be heading in the same direction as "Half-Life," with studio staff having considered a virtual reality adaptation of the franchise and pursuing that goal to one degree or another.

That's according to McVicker, speaking through his Twitter account to emphasize that "'Left 4 Dead' is real, not releasing."

"This is Valve, the word releasing isn't being used for a reason," he clarified.

"Left 4 Dead" was released in 2008 and "Left 4 Dead 2" in 2009. Much like "Half-Life 2," "Left 4 Dead" received three further updates -- The Passing, The Sacrifice, and community pack Cold Stream -- without adopting the standalone nature of "Half-Life 2"'s Episode 1 and 2.

"Half-Life: Alyx" has made it through the prototyping stage and is targeting a March 2020 release for PC-based VR headsets; Valve is including it for free for owners of its own high-end Valve Index system.

Thanks to the franchise's fan community, "Left 4 Dead 2" can already be played through a compatible VR headset via modifications available through the Steam Workshop.