Electronic Arts Bolsters PC Game Lineup

The company inks a deal with the developer of Half-Life 2.
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The PC game lineup at

Electronic Arts

(ERTS)

is getting some new life.

The video-game giant has signed a distribution and publishing deal with

Valve

, the privately held developer behind

Half-Life 2

, one of the top-selling PC games of last year. As part of the multiyear deal, EA will distribute special PC editions of

Half-Life 2

and

Counter-Strike: Source

, both of which will be released in September, said EA spokeswoman Tammy Schachter. EA will also publish and distribute

Half-Life 2

for the Xbox, which has an October release date.

Additionally, the agreement includes the rights to publish or distribute future games within the two franchises, Schachter said. Schachter declined to give financial details of the deal or its specific duration.

The deal covers the retail versions of the two game franchises, she said. Valve-owned Steam will continue to distribute the games online.

A Valve representative did not return a call seeking comment.

The deal follows the dissolution of Valve's partnership with

Vivendi Universal

(V) - Get Report

. As part of a lawsuit settlement earlier this year, Vivendi agreed to stop distributing Valve's games, including

Half-Life 2

and

Counter-Strike

, as of August 31.

The special edition version of

Half-Life 2

, titled

Game of the Year

, will include

Half-Life 2

,

Counter-Strike: Source

,

Half-Life 2: Deathmatch

and

Half-Life: Source

. The

Counter-Strike: Source

package will include that game plus

Half-Life 2: Deathmatch

and

Day of Defeat: Source

.

In recent trading, EA shares were up 52 cents, or about 1%, to $57.98.