Retro Game Friday: Portal

Michael Blaker
Game Industry News is running the best blog posts from people writing about the game industry. Articles here may originally appear on Michael's blog, Windborne's Story Eatery.


This week for Retro Game Friday I’m covering a game I love. It’s Portal!

Plot Synopsis: In Portal, the player controls the protagonist, Chell, from a first-person perspective as she is challenged to navigate through a series of rooms using the Aperture Science Handheld Portal Device, or portal gun, under the watchful supervision of the artificial intelligence GLaDOS. The portal gun can create two distinct portal ends, orange and blue.

Plot: The plot is full of dark humor and is still widely referenced in today’s pop culture. It’s wonderful and well done, but rather short along with the gameplay.

Gameplay: The game is quite short, averaging a first time player’s run through at 3 hours, though some maniacs have managed to do it in just over 15 minutes. The actual gameplay is wonderfully done and has an amazing set of physics that let’s the player use the full scope of the portal gun to their own advantage.

Characters: GLaDOS is awesome, and that’s all that really needs to be said. Although the Companion Cube is pretty great too.

Art: Pretty good, although slightly dated now.

Music: One of the best parts of the entire game, the musical score is wonderful and the ending song is perfect.

Overall: If you haven’t played this game you really need to.

For those who like: Puzzles, FPS games, Thinking, Action, Dark Humor, Little Violence, Excellent Cast of Three Characters, Fantastic Plot, Great Gameplay.

Not for those who don’t like: Any of the above.

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