Erik Wolpaw

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Erik Wolpaw
Born United States
Nationality American
Occupation Video game writer

Erik Wolpaw is an American video game writer. Wolpaw and Chet Faliszek were the two writers behind the now-defunct Old Man Murray video game commentary web site.[1] The Old Man Murray web site had a huge influence on gaming writing and gaming journalism[2] and has been referenced in many computer games.[3] He had been a writer Valve Corporation in Bellevue, Washington, and co-credited for writing credits on several games including the Portal, Left 4 Dead and Half-Life series. He left Valve in February 2017 and is currently writing for Psychonauts 2.[4]


As a high-school student Wolpaw wrote two type-in program games for the Atari 8-bit family that Antic published in 1983 and 1984.[5] He wrote dialogue for the video game Portal[6] and wrote Portal 2 with Chet Faliszek and Jay Pinkerton.[7] In 2006, Wolpaw won the Game Developers Choice Award for Best Writing for his story and dialogue contributions to Psychonauts while working for Double Fine Productions.[8]

Personal Life[edit]

In 2004, Wolpaw was diagnosed with ulcerative colitis. Expecting his condition to require a departure from the company, he spoke with managing director Gabe Newell, who surprised him by offering an extended leave with pay. "Your job is to get better," Newell said. "That is your job description at Valve. So go home to your wife and come back when you are better."[9]


Year Title Credits
2011 Portal 2 Writer
2008 Left 4 Dead Co-Writer
2007 Half-Life 2: Episode Two Writer
2007 Portal Writer
2006 Half-Life 2: Episode One Writer
2005 Psychonauts Co-Writer

See also[edit]


  1. ^ John Walker (2007-10-31). "RPS Interview: Valve’s Erik Wolpaw". Rock, Paper, Shotgun. Retrieved 2011-03-02.
  2. ^ "Old Man Murray".  TV Tropes. Retrieved 2011-03-03.
  3. ^ "Easter Eggs". Oni Galore, a wiki dedicated to the video game Oni.  Retrieved 2011-03-03.
  4. ^ Graft, Kris (February 17, 2017). "Report: Longtime Valve writer Erik Wolpaw leaves company". Gamasutra. Retrieved February 17, 2017. 
  5. ^ "Index of Antic articles by Erik Wolpaw". Retrieved March 14, 2011. 
  6. ^ Berghammer, Billy (2006-08-25). "GC 06:Valve's Doug Lombardi Talks Half-Life 2 Happenings". Game Informer. Archived from the original on 2007-08-17. Retrieved 2007-09-27. 
  7. ^ Game Informer
  8. ^ "The 6th Annual Game Developers Choice Awards: Nominees & Awards Recipients". Game Developers Choice Awards. 2006. Archived from the original on 2007-09-19. Retrieved 2007-09-27. 
  9. ^ Keighley, Geoff. The Final Hours of Portal 2. e-book. 2011.

External links[edit]