First Look at Portal 2 Gameplay and Trailer E3 2010.

Hassan Mujtaba

    Valve has officially announced its new game Portal 2 which is a First Person Action/Puzzle game. The much anticipated title has been revealed after a very long wait, 3 years after the release of the first Portal game which was released back in 2007. Portal 2 has been set up for release in 2011 and will be released for PC, PS3 and Xbox 360.

    Portal 2 will continue to challenge the player by solving puzzles in test chambers within the Aperture Science Enrichment Center using the portal gun (the Aperture Science Handheld Portal Device), a device that can create two portals connecting two surfaces across space. Players solve puzzles by using these portals to move unconventionally between rooms or to use the ability to fling objects or themselves across a distance. The functionality of the gun has not changed between the games, but within Portal 2, players can take advantage of the bleeding of other physical effects through the portals. Game Informer identified two examples of this: one was the ability to use air currents created by a series of transport pneumatic tubes through a set of portal openings to push a turret over or to draw objects into the suction. The second example was to use the power of tractor beams through portals to bring Chell or other objects to otherwise inaccessible areas.

    The game also introduces special paint that can be used to impart certain physical effects to a surface (for example, one identified by Game Informer is an orange paint that when stepped on will impart high speed to the player). The player will be required to determine how to transport that paint to appropriate surfaces using portals in order to progress. This paint can also be applied to objects, such as the Weighted Storage Cube crates that affect their own physical nature. In addition to the Storage Cube, there are new types of portable objects that assist the player, including Redirection Cubes with mirrored, reflective surfaces, Aerial Faith Plates that can launch objects placed on them, and spherical Weighted Storage Balls, which made a brief appearance in the original game in one of the advanced chambers.

    While most of the single-player game will take place in the test chambers created by GLaDOS or her personality cores, there will be times where the player will need to move behind-the-scenes in areas beyond the test chambers as they are reconfigured, leaving the player free of GLaDOS’s observation and control.

    The game will include a two-player co-operative mode in addition to the single player mode. Both players control separate portal guns and can use the other player’s portals as necessary; the second player’s portals will be of a different color to help distinguish between the two sets. Because of the number of possible portal combinations, the test chambers that the players proceed through are much more difficult than the single-player campaign, encouraging the two players to work together. This includes complicated laser redirections using both series of portals, or working in two separate chambers, performing actions in their side of the chamber to allow the other player to progress in theirs. The game includes voice communication between players for this mode as well as split-screen for players playing locally. Online players will have the ability to temporarily enter a split-screen view to help coordinate actions. Players have the ability to place icons on the game’s levels as a means of informing the other player what they need to do.

    As part of the Sony press conference at E3 (seen in the above video), Portal 2 was revealed by Gabe Newell, co-founder and managing director of video game development at Valve, that Portal 2 will be available for the PlayStation 3; the game will include some features of Steamworks used in the PC and Mac versions and will be the only console version of the game to do so, making the game in Gabe’s words “the best console version”. The news came as a surprise to many journalists, as previously, Newell has made negative comments about the system, calling it “a total disaster on so many levels”; Newell jokingly referred to these comments by thanking Sony for “their gracious hospitality and not repeatedly punching me in the face”.


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