Posts Tagged ‘Portal’

Mod News: Release The Valve

In the week of Portal 2’s release, it seems apt that Valve’s games should dominate the mod scene’s output. While the range of titles you can mod these days is impressive, and so many of the tools are easy to learn, I’ve still yet to come across a moddable engine that’s quite as intuitive and flexible as Source. I can’t wait to see what people can do with Portal 2 when we’re able to mod that. It’s going to be very interesting to see the results. Onwards, then…
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Potano: GLaDOS Is Stealing Our Spuds

Okay, what. All this diligent, web-wide meta-potato-harvesting to apparently get Portal 2 unlocked early, and now something’s gone all weird, just when the end was in sight. The GLaDOS@home site is showing the work so far seeming being undone at a rate of knots. We don’t know why, we don’t know the result. But we damned well hope people haven’t spent money on a collection of indie games purely because they thought it would win them early access to Portal 2 that they now may not get.

On the other hand 1) the site now lists ‘9 test subjects’ as having been found and 2) the chaps on the ValveARG site are claiming the G-Man can be seen in the background… No. C’mon. We’re being gamed, right? That one’s been removed already, which I take to mean it was trolling by someone. Unsurprising, given its lack of subtlety. Additional: the ‘9’ appears to be the ARG’s most successful players being taken to Valve to play the game.

Potatwo? The Valve ARG Ain’t Over

When I close my eyes, I see cubes. And potatoes.

While the GLaDOS@Home distributed potato-collecting event is still ongoing, hints are emerging that there may be even more to come following its conclusion. Portal 2 being released early is the apparent plan, but could there be something more?

The latest Steamcast (an unofficial fan radio show) apparently aired with a brief Morse Code signal playing over the chatter, which the hosts claim to have been unaware of. You can hear it for yourself below and ponder upon its authenticity, but if it’s real this is what it says:” it’s not over the others have been compromised.”

Ah.
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The Very Important List Of PC Games, Part 2/5

Yesterday, as you may have noted, Dr Rossignol began our lecture series on the most important PC games of all time. Much like The Christmas Lectures, The Reith Lectures, and the TED Lectures, this definitive series has been a part of our institution as long as the Earth has borne stones. In this second part Professor John Walker explains the varying importanceness of a second collection of the most important games to have graced the PC in the last 150 years. Read on for one fifth of the elements necessary for enlightenment. And doffs of hats to Intel’s AppUp developer program for sponsoring this most critical of series.

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Still Alive + Minecraft = Internet

The internet is eating itself.

It’s hard not to think that musical blocks weren’t added to Minecraft with the sole intention of ensuring a trillion new YouTube videos that we all can’t resist posting. Double that down with the internet’s endless love for Portal’s Still Alive (how will they ever compete with that in Portal 2?), and you’ve got a post that has to be there first thing on a Monday morning to correctly start your week. And this isn’t a half-arsed job. Incredibly only taking five or six hours to put together, this is a remarkable piano rendition of the Coulton song.

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And Then We Posted: Portal In Ten Minutes

The candle is the best bit, but no one ever eats it.
The other day I was thinking about games in which you would occasionally fall out of the bottom of the map. San Francisco Rush was good for that, on the console toys. You could spill out of the map and race around in infinite pale green. “I remember when games used to be full of glitches,” I thought to myself. And then I saw Portal completed in ten minutes and realised that they still are. You just need to find them.

In other news: Why would you find them? Unless you were playing Söldner! or something, where that was the point of playing it. Ten minutes of your life below. Imagine what that means in minutes of his life.
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Chell Is Other People: Cute Portal Cosplay

Hello, Alt-text readers. Have you missed me?

Just clearing out my phone and found some footage and shots I took at the MCM Expo last weekend. It’s of a Portal cosplayer who caught my eye because she had a remote control Companion cube*, which is pretty fancy. Also, now I look again, looks a lot like a teen version of Ex-Edge Ed now-designer Margaret Robertson. Spooks! Click through for the full photo, and find the snippet of MOVING CUBE is below…
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Aw, Cuddles: Portal 2 Co-Op Screenshots

Dawwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwww.

Last night at PAX, Valve released a new collection of co-op screenshots from Portal 2. I got to thinking that you might like to look at them. In response to this thought, I’ve put them up on popular PC gaming website Rock, Paper, Shotgun. They’re below. As usual, click on them for largess. And largeness.

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Schooled: Portal On The Wabash Reading List

Companion Cube, Companion Cube, whereforeart Companion cube?

Delirium Wartner altered us to this fascinating snippet. Michael “Braingamer” Abbott’s day job is working at Wabash Liberal Arts college in Indiana. In the new (compulsory) Enduring Questions course they’ll be engaging with a variety texts with a general theme of humanity, across all ages. So we’ll have Gilgamesh rubbing shoulders with Poetics, Donne’s poetry, Hamlet, the Tao Te Ching and… Portal. The full story behind it is fascinating, but the core story is that a long-established (1832) college have decided that it’s worth putting a videogame on the syllabus for study. Abbott also talks about other games he considered – Planescape Torment and Bioshock – but decided on Glados’ star turn. Which does make me think… well, if you were in the same situation, what games would you put on a liberal arts reading list? I suspect I may have made the same call as Abbott. Or Robotron, obvs

Yes, Mistress – GLaDOS Is Back

O frabjous day. For the first time in some three years, we’re treated to brand new words from the world’s second-favourite homicidal AI (SHODAN still has the edge, right?), Portal’s GLaDOS. Her lilting synth-tones narrate a lovely animated ad pimping yesterday’s free release of the original Portal, returning us to the heady days of Aperture Science motivational videos. That’s not at all. The deceased (OR IS SHE? (she isn’t)) robocrazy slips in a little tease for Portal 2 at the end, confirming that co-op play will be front and centre in the next round of physics-abusing adventures. Welcome back, missus.
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You Only Need The Name: Team Portress

Come on. Applaud this.

If I had my way, Portal guns would appear in all other games. Far Cry 2, Dragon Age, World Of Goo, Freecell, the lot. And they’d appear in real life. Imagine how great things would be if I had my way. However, if the modding project of one Pawn from 3-PG manages to escape some awkward obstacles, we could soon be seeing a mod that allows the Portal gun in Team Fortress 2. Called, rather wonderfully, Team Portress, the video below explains how the gun works in game, first demonstrating what it’s capable of, then showing you the weapon in a proper game. The catch? According to the poster, Valve has recently introduced a ban on custom items being given to players to prevent the anarchic distribution of hats.

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Valve Won’t Let Us Sleep: Portal Updates

Valve appear to have decided to own March, in what’s an increasingly frightening/thrilling internet invasion. Yeah, that’s two Valve stories in a row – but we can’t not post about such things. Just a few minutes ago, Portal updated itself again – the patch notes reading simply “added valuable asset retrieval.” What could it mean? Is it the final piece in the (potentially) Portal 2 puzzle? Given Valve’s predilection for making TF2 update drip-feed news last a week, I suspect we’re not quite at the end yet. What this is, though, is a clear sign to load up Portal and hunt for mystery changes right away…. Already, I’m told, facepunch.com and Steam forumites have uncovered two new dinosaur.fizzle files and the ominously-named body_drag_01.wav. I’m hearing hints there may be a new map in there too.. Ooh! Ripe for mystery-harvesting, surely?

Update: it’s a (slightly, but tantalisingly) new ending. Video beneath the cut. German robots? Parties? Oh yes. Portal is getting a sequel – which leaves the resounding question of whether it will, as is widely speculated, be linked to HL2: Episode 3 or not…
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Is This Portal 2?

More revelations from the ongoing ARG-decoding, which is currently neatly summarised here. The latest is that they’ve been able to dial into an Aperture Science bulletin board and download a load of ASCII art. It’s quite clearly Portal / Weighted Companion Cube-related stuff, but it wasn’t giving much away. But then someone tried rotating some of it…

Whaddaya think? Looks a little Mirrors Edgy to me… And what could these little chaps be?

Eurogamer: Kim Swift Interview

Happy Portal to you.

Over at Eurogamer today I have a great big interview with Kim Swift, the project lead on Portal who has recently moved to head up a team at Airtight Games. It’s part of EG’s Retro Sundays, so the focus of the interview was on Narbacular Drop, how that game came into existence, and the path it took to become the seed that inspired Portal. We also discuss that games that preceded it at DigiPen, and later Swift’s philosophy of gaming and where she’d like to see the medium heading. Also she mocks me. Here’s a chunk of it. The rest of it is here.

Eurogamer: And what makes something fun?

Kim Swift: Well, I suppose the word fun is really relative. I think games should be something really entertaining and should make players react in a tangible way. Whether that be anxiety and tension from Shooters, or sorrow from a character dying in an RPG, or a good laugh at an amazing line of dialogue. Games should give players the opportunity to create their own story because those are the sorts of experiences that they’re going to really remember. When people talk about games to other people they talk about what they did or what they played through, not the cut-scene that they idly watched. It’s the player’s actions that really count.

ASCIIpOrtal: Soooon…

As mentioned on the podcast (what you don’t know about that podcast is Kieron and I fought to the death afterwards. He killed me. These are in fact the words of Kieron wearing Alec’s skin as a hat), we’re not entirely sure why we haven’t mentioned the surprisingly elaborate ASCII re/demake of Portal on the site as yet. Let’s correct that. Did you know there’s an ASCII re/demake of Portal in the works? And that it’s surprisingly elaborate?
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If I Knew You Were Coming I’d Have Baked A Cake

I'm lost for words
Been online for a while, it seems, but Shawn Elliot’s Tweet-o-thing expose us to the above lovely fanart by Peganthyrus of the ‘shipping of ur-AI-hottie Shodan and fairly-ur-AI hottie GladOS. Above is her humourous take on it. And beneath the cut, the more slashy approach. Click through to go to the full images on her deviant-art page at much better image quality.

NSFW? I think it’s fine, but I’m a big old pervert.
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Portal: Prelude

Barney: The Apple Years

Oh, your face just then. It was all like WTF ZOMG NO WAY!!!!!! Like, rilly.

Sorry, but this isn’t a reveal of the rumoured official prequel to the gamette that stole our hearts and minds around about this time last year. Instead it’s a mod, but considering pretty much every other Portal mod has been little more than a level pack, this is a particularly ambitious one.

Specifically, it has a storyline. It even has NPCs that aren’t cubes or turrets.
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