Also, a little startling.
After all, it’s not every day that a seasoned gamer gets that feeling of pure, unadulterated satisfaction upon seeing digital credits roll. It’s even more rare when that sated feeling starts translating into thoughts of, "that’s the best game I’ve played in a long time" and “that’s . . . that’s one of the best games I’ve ever played in my life.”
Yeah. It happened.
Like so many others I fell in love with the 2007 original game and was crazy excited for the sequel. However, part of me worried about how the simple (I use that word very loosely) idea of the 4-hour experiment would translate into a full-fledged game. Would I get tired of the same routine after 8 or so hours? Would all the puzzles manage to be unique from one another? Would the addition of an actual plot deter from the mechanics at all?
In short, the answers are no, yes, and absolutely not.
J.K. Simmons also does an incredible job as Cave Johnson, the CEO of Aperture Science who hates you almost as much as GLaDOS does and seems to have a firm belief in everyone around him being a loser who will do anything for $60.
In addition to the awesome writing and voice talent, the game’s designers deserve immense praise. Not only are the puzzles brilliantly designed but the game does a great job of switching up your surroundings to avoid repetition. Just when I would start to get sick of an area, I would be thrown into an entirely new one. Yes, I definitely got frustrated more than once and I’m not too proud to admit that a few puzzles took me over half and hour to solve.
But oh man, when I did. GLORIOUS.
I can’t even begin to fathom how the developers came up with all the puzzle designs but I’m pretty sure we’d find the origin of the universe in their collective brains should we be given the chance to dig around in there.
The single player campaign of Portal 2 really is, from start to finish, genius. Absolute genius. The co-op mode however, introduces something new to the franchise. You and a buddy play as Atlas and P-Body, two robots built by GLaDOS specifically to run her diabolical courses. Lynsey and I have run through the first course and had a blast.
GLaDOS seemed okay with it though.
Really folks, I don’t have too much more to say. This is really a game that has few, if any, flaws. In fact, the only one I can think of off the top of my head is that the scripted events can take awhile sometime and upon additional play-throughs it may be a chore to sit through them all again. But why would you want to skip them anyway?
. . .
Yeah, that’s all I’ve got. Really. That’s the only thing I can think of that could potentially be wrong with this game. I’m sayin’ it, Ladies and Gentlemen: Portal 2 is perfect. Perfect. It’s the kind of game that only comes around once in a blue moon and absolutely should not be missed by anyone. Also, it's rated “E” so you’ve got no excuse.
Get out there and get yourself a copy of what is bound to become the gold standard of puzzle games.