Portal 2: Ya it’s really good

Yesterday Anne and I more or less declared a day off and did little other than play Portal 2. By 2am we had both beaten the single player as well as the co-opp which we tackled first.


Overall, we both loved it. Part of the joy of the original was… its originality and indeed much in the sequel is familiar. What it lacks in newness, it makes up for in added elements. The team play is wonderful, the more robust story is a lot of fun, and the new challenge elements add a lot of variety to the challenges. It is certainly much more a full game than its predecessor with far more puzzles, a wider range of environs, and a much richer story. That said, its still a “short” game in that you can play through it pretty quickly and replay is more limited than an RPG, Arcade or Strategy title. Personally, I prefer a shorter but richer game experience and I even though I ran through it in one marathon session, I felt like I got my full moneys worth of entertainment and challenge.


I did feel that Portal 2 was not exceptionally challenging and both Anne and I were rarely stumped for more than a handful of minutes. I’d like to think I’m just terribly clever, but I suspect that most won’t find it too hard unless spacial puzzles just aren’t your thing in which case…. might not be your kind of game. 🙂  Then again, it gave the pleasure of making me feel very clever without ever making me feel too stupid to figure it out. I think that is likely the sweet spot most game designers are shooting for so I’d call that a win. If you have never played Portal, it may be more challenging until you “get” the basic idea, fortunately the game does a great job bringing you up to speed as you play so you should find yourself feeling clever in no time flat.


Its very funny, more so than the first and with more characters worked into the story while still featuring lots of Glados. All of them are great! They also do a wonderful job expanding on both the world and the narrative story without slowing down the action at all. Valve is really great at story telling in action games, miles beyond a lot of other designers/writers.


Summary: Its a damn fine sequel and a wonderful game. Good job Valve!




2 Responses to “Portal 2: Ya it’s really good

  • sweet! it’s 2 player!? I need to crawl out more often to check what’s going on.

  • Yep, it is very clever the way they did it. There is less story in the co-op but it still has some and the voice work is great. Glados gives you private messages about the other player saying bad things about you and the like. The puzzles are also a bit harder in co-op but you have two brains working on it. 🙂