Progress: 11 of 19 rooms
Have you seen the movie The Cube? Portal is a puzzle game that looks like that movie and plays as a first person shooter; the only thing, is you're not really shooting anything. Set in the mysterious Aperture Science Laboratories, Portal has been called one of the most innovative video games and offers gamers hours of unique gameplay. The story begins with you in a room, with a voice telling you that your taking part in an experiment, that your job is to make it through the puzzles that are set before you. The gun you see in the banner above is your Portal Gun which you acquire almost right away. The Portal Gun enables you to create portals which are imperative to traverse through the different rooms, each with their own unique puzzle. Of course I'd heard of it, read some stories about it but just never played Portal myself. That is, until last week when developer Valve decided to give Portal away for free for a limited time; and before you ask, both PC and Mac editions are available.
What's the catch you may be wondering? I know what you Mac people are thinking: "A game?! None-the-less a FREE one?". Well it seams Valve wants you to download Steam. Steam is a very cool looking content delivery system. What's that? It's like how your iPhone is a content delivery system it can download different apps for you to play or rather an iTunes for games. Steam can download different games for you to play from the Valve library. My guess is that someone felt if you have this content delivery system on your computer you just might buy something. Steam comes in at 256mb and has stored about 4 gigs of info in my documents folder which I assume is the game.
The first thing I noticed when firing up Portal is I already knew how to play. Movement is based off of the regular first person controls. Players must solve physical puzzles and challenges including opening portals and maneuvering objects (and themselves) through space. I've played twice since downloading. The first time I went straight through six chapters with a little luck and some Fringe-like thinking. The second time I found myself through to room 11 before I got stuck and decided to write this. This game really makes you think out of the box (pun intended).
Download Portal and give it a whirl. You know you've been curious about it -- and you can always delete it. Thanks for the game, Valve. Hurry you only have until Monday, May 24th to download for FREE.
Thanks to reader jfajitas, who is in a Facebook relationship with his PC gaming set up, for sending in the link.
The thinking man's first person shooter