Gabe Newell, our generous benefactor and beloved Steam overlord, has announced that his love for making people take gnomes on insanely long trips hasn’t dulled in the last 16 years. Fans will remember perilously carting a garden gnome through Half-Life 2‘s environments in order to gain gaming’s most prized asset: an achievement.
Not to be outdone by a video game he refused to finish, Newell has somehow convinced the good folks at Rocket Lab, who specialize in launching gnome-free satellites, to break their long-standing “no gnomes in space” rule to do the exact thing that this article’s headline has already clearly stated.
In space, gnomeone can hear you scream
The gnome, a titanium-built recreation of world-famous Valve gnome, Gnome Chompski, is set to become the first gnomestronaut this month. But when, you ask? The launch window opens November 15, so you’ve still got half a month to wait. I’m sure you’re literally champing at the bit for this one. Regardless, the launch will be livestreamed, so you’ll be able to watch the entire thing from the safety of your Uncle Seamus’ porch, as he doesn’t let you bring your laptop inside the house.
I’m sure the next question you’re asking is “why?” Well, why not? Not only has Newell worn Rocket Lab down with what I’m assuming are months of gnome puns, he’s also committed to donating a dollar per viewer to the Pediatric Intensive Care Unit at Starship. If you’d like to take part in that (and you should, because that’s a great cause), then you’ll want to bookmark the livestream and get your peepers set on space, population: gnome when the day comes later this month. I for one hope the 150 mm gnome has a great trip and that Gabe Newell can finally cross this one off his bucket list. I also hope a lot of kids at the Starship ICU have a pile of donations pour in from the livestream.