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Catch Up: Portal 2

When Portal 2 first released in 2011, I heard nothing but great things about it. Come years end, after it had picked up a number of awards and nominations for game of the year I knew I needed to pick it up.

I bought up the game but unfortunately, life and other titles prevented me from ever finishing it until just recently. Portal 2 was a game that I had always been meaning to go back to and do a full playthrough and I’m glad that I’ve finally done it because to put it simply; Portal 2 is amazing.

In Portal 2, the player wakes up to find themselves within the Aperture Science complex, which is on the verge of destruction. Eventually, a reawakened GLaDOS separates the player from a newfound ally in Wheatley and forces them to work their way through a new set of obstacles and challenges.

For those of you who aren’t particularly confident in their puzzle solving abilities, fret not. While many puzzles do come with a level of difficulty, the puzzles in Portal 2 never feel like they’re overly complicated to solve. During my playthrough I found that many solutions were actually quite obvious once I worked them out, all it requires is for players to analyse the area and experiment with the tools available.

The puzzles always appear approachable, and I think this pays off exceptionally well in Portal 2. Completing each course felt like an achievement, and it made me excited for what was coming next.

Level design isn’t the only area that Portal 2 succeeds in, as the writing is some of the best I’ve seen in a video game. The writing team at Valve came up with a wonderful script that blends an interesting narrative with some top-notch humour that’s only improved by an excellent voice cast consisting of Stephen Merchant, Ellen McLain and J.K Simmons.

If you enjoy a co-op experience, Portal 2 provides a mode that’s just as fun as the single player portion of the game. You and your friend are put in control of Atlas and P-Body, two bipedal robots that are also tasked with completing the puzzles within test chambers. Like the single player campaign, players must manipulate gravity, movement, and more to complete test chambers, but the addition of an extra player adds an element that makes it feel like a completely unique experience.

Portal 2 is a game that people shouldn’t miss out on. Not only does it provide a gameplay experience that remains unlike any other, but it also delivers on an excellent storyline that features some of the best comedic writing in a video game. If you haven’t got around to playing Portal 2 by now, I highly recommend that you put it at the top of your list.

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