Half-Life 2: Episode 2[/I] achievement where players unlocked "Little Rocket Man" by arduously carrying Gnome Chompski all the way through the episode before finally placing him in a rocket. It's, to put it mildly, a giant pain in the ass. Gnome Chompski also makes cameos in Half-Life: Alyx and Left 4 Dead 2. Valve likes him a lot.
(Actually, Half-Life 2: Episode 2 got a
new Steam achievement as part of the Rocket Labs launch. It's called "Gnome Alone" and the description reads "If you are reading this achievement, Gabe Newell has successfully launched Gnome Chompski into space. If you did not also receive the achievement 'Manufacturing Ascent.' Newell has abandoned his plans to shoot Noam Chomsky into space." The achievement art is pretty ace.)
The second answer affects people still on this planet. Newell pledged to donate $1 to the Starship Children's Hospital in Auckland, New Zealand for every person who watches the launch. Right now, that tally sits around 225,000. If you want to help the kids and watch a gnome go all Sally Ride, click that video up top. Hell, refresh it a few times. Gabe's good for it.

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