"Portal 2:" puzzle harder

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Courtesy of: MCT
“Portal 2” is the quintessential “bigger and better” sequel that focuses and expands on the original’s strengths while raising the quality bar higher, but without breaking much new ground

Chris Tsuneta
The Broadside

You’re falling, then you remember to shoot the ground below you and you will be flying. “Portal 2” is one of the most brilliant puzzle games made in a long time.

The single player campaign is short, yet immensely entertaining. Depending on your skill level when it comes to solving puzzles, playing time can last anywhere from four to 10 hours.

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The character Chell from the first “Portal” game returns in “Portal 2” despite an undetermined amount of time passing between the conclusion of “Portal” and the beginning of “Portal 2.” Chell is still alive because her character is left in a state of stasis.

The room in which the adventure begins is clearly decaying. After you meet the orb-like character Wheatley, you get to see more of the facility in which the game takes place. As the game progresses the puzzles get increasingly difficult to solve and the storyline improves.

“Without the looming consequence of death, is this even science?” GLaDOS, the main villain from “Portal” would say.

She means this wholeheartedly. This is a challenging game in which you must keep your wits about you in order to survive.

When you play through this game, “Best-case scenario, you might get some superpowers. Worst case, some tumors, which we’ll cut out,” says the character, Cave Johnson who is the Aperture Science Chief Executive Officer in “Portal 2”.

Even though the single player campaign is short, the cooperative campaign is even more challenging and entertaining.

Not only do the puzzles get harder, you also have to deal with trying to communicate with a partner who might not know what to do. These challenges can lead to some friendly banter over the headsets or text chats as you work together to solve the puzzles.

The single player campaign is spectacular enough but a cooperative campaign that is this much fun should not be missed. You can pick up “Portal 2” for $50 for the PC/Mac or you can pick it up for Xbox360 or PlayStation 3 (which also includes a PC copy due to the new Valve and Sony agreement) for $60.

If you enjoy the challenge of solving puzzle games, “Portal 2” is well worth the investment. The characters are quirky and interesting with multi-layered personalities. The graphics are spectacularly designed and visually stimulating. The music in this game will appeal to fans of ambient electronic music.

Sound effects are well constructed and convincing. The character dialogue is clever and amusing.

The flow of the game play is compelling and addictive. You won’t want to stop playing this game whether you play it as a single player or if you play with a friend.

“Portal 2” has great replay value and with the added ability of players to design their own levels of game play it allows for lots of personal creativity. I would highly recommend this game for anyone who enjoys games in a scientific setting.

Chris Tsuneta can be reached at uncle.taxi1@gmail.com

Reviewing scores

Reviewer Score
34/36
PC Gamer score
94/100
Metascore
95/100

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