Better late than etc…
Okay, so I’m hooked on Portal. It’s been a year since The Orange Box was released — it’s time to get in on the fun! (And boy was I missing out!)
What is it?
Portal is a single-player first-person shooter action game / video puzzle game developed by Valve. The game was released in a bundle package known as The Orange Box for PC and Xbox 360 on October 10 2007, and for the PlayStation 3 on December 3 2007. The Microsoft Windows version of the game is also available for download separately through Steam. The game consists of a series of puzzles which must be solved by teleporting the player’s character and other simple objects using the Aperture Science Handheld Portal Device. The goal of each puzzle is to reach an exit point. The “portal gun” and the unusual physics it creates are the emphasis of this game.
That explains it — but what really steals the show for me aside from the innovative gameplay is the sarcastic AI, GladOS. (If you’ve seen Knocked Up, she’s like an AI version of Kristen Wiig’s character.) Plus, well, there’s the promise for cake.
The story is about Chell (you) a test subject in an Aperture Science experiment who tries to escape captivity, all the while being monitored and taunted by the AI GladOS. Armed with an “Aperture Science Handheld Portal Device” (AKA the Portal gun), you go about test courses, creating inventive solutions for getting away, by shooting blue origin portals and orange destination portals in creative spots.
It’s a short and definitely a sweet romp, since it could be finished in a single sitting. Active mappers extend the lifespan of the game by releasing ingenious puzzles and other add-ons for download.
Games should be like this — light, funny, makes you think, makes you excited for that “eureka!” moment of discovery and also infinitely expandable via fan-made maps and whatnot.
If you’re done with the game, you might want to check these out:
Didja play it too? Do you love it more than infinite sums you could neither count nor write down? Are you constantly humming “Still Alive?” Do you have an unhealthy obsession with cakes … or cubes? Leave a comment!