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Author Topic: Anyway this cake is great. It's so delicious and moist.  (Read 28960 times)
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on: October 16, 2007, 09:56:10 PM

Anyway this cake is great. It\'s so delicious and moist.



”Now these points of data make a beautiful line. And we're out of beta. We're releasing on time.”

I'm having a hard time writing about the Orange Box. That's to say, the words I'm forming don't really do it justice. Greatest Box of Games Ever Released almost does it, but that's not really enough. It's kind of like seeing god. The Orange Box is a religious experience. Hidden inside it's sweet, delicious encryption was the complete Half-Life 2 Experience (up to this point) and  a 2-hour gem of a title. A title that fleshes out a world that we'd only seen glimpses of through semi-awkward story-telling and short scripted events that didn't always make sense. And then you play it. Everything, or at least enough of everything, falls into place.

Protip: Absolutely massive, game ruining spoilers after the jump. But really, if you haven't beaten Portal by now then you're part of the problem.

» Read More
Prospero
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Reply #1 on: October 16, 2007, 10:52:52 PM

I'm still not seeing how people make the leap that you play Chell Johnson. I buy the whole bit that you were there at bring your daughter to work day, but there is absolutely nothing to back up the claim you're Johnson's daughter.

Beyond that bit of crazy, you're pretty much dead on. Although I actually do care about the HL crew. In fact I want more fights with vorts wearing lab coats. Maybe even vort Village People.
squirrel
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Reply #2 on: October 16, 2007, 10:58:28 PM

Quote
Now give us more Aperture Lab stuff before I kick you right in the jimmy.

My God yes please. I've played Portal through twice, and I'm probably less than 1/2 way through EP2. It just pales in comparison IMO, although I want to finish it to see how it helps me understand what happened at Aperture.

I've completely made the 'clone theory' leap. The scribblings and the almost familial tone of GLaDOS lead me to no other conclusion. Furthermore I don't believe that there have ever been any other test subjects. The test environment, and GLaDOS her/itself, were designed specifically for Chell. She is not one in a long line of subjects, or even the latest clone of the most recent subject; she *is* the subject and the only thing that is being tested, as you mention in quoting the "NOTES.EXE":
Quote
“Several Years Later – The untested AI is activated for the first time as one of the planned activities on Aperture's first annual bring-your-daughter-to-work day.”

So why? Why did he do this, and where does this go from here? What was the overall purpose - to find out if a single person redeveloped from Tabula Rasa state could be molded and guided to a specific goal, albeit with behavioral and physical modifications? Or is there something specific about Chell, some reason it had to be her. Were they testing the modifications and the process or the character? And what if the original Chell left on the same day she arrived, and you are not only a clone, but a clone being put through trials the original never experienced? What if there are not only more Chell's but more experiments? What if the original is completely oblivious to her genetic contribution to science - as an army of Chell's are repeatedly massacred until they succeed?

Game of the Year for me easily so far, and unlikely to be de-throned. Hellgate will probably occupy lots more of time in terms of keyboard hours, but only because there is no more Portal for me to play. And GoTY should not only be about execution, but about innovation, intelligence, engagement and execution. So far for me Portal fucking nails it. As I read somewhere else I can't now recall "Valve has shown that the first-person, action, puzzle, adventure, comedy genre is a winner. Which is a, um, first."

So yeah. More. Please.

EDIT: spelling and clarification.
« Last Edit: October 16, 2007, 11:07:12 PM by squirrel »

Speaking of marketing, we're out of milk.
schild
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Reply #3 on: October 16, 2007, 11:06:58 PM

Quote
I'm still not seeing how people make the leap that you play Chell Johnson.

Uh, in the credits, it says Thanks to Blah blah blah for chell's face or something. It flat out says you play Chell.
schild
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Reply #4 on: October 16, 2007, 11:25:30 PM

Oh RIGHT. Why did he do that?

I have a sneaking suspicion that Chell and Alyx are connected via the GMan and that GMan has a stake in Aperture. Or at least, it's lining up after Episode 2. Omg spoiler.
Jeff Kelly
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Reply #5 on: October 17, 2007, 02:33:34 AM

Playing Half Life 2 is a religious experience? Um, yeah whatever. Exaggerate much?
schild
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Reply #6 on: October 17, 2007, 02:36:20 AM

Playing Half Life 2 is a religious experience? Um, yeah whatever. Exaggerate much?

No asshole, read better, not faster.

Playing half life 2 episode 2 after playing portal and coming to the realizations you come to - unless you're a dribbling moron - is LIKE a religious experience. I wouldn't know what an ACTUAL religious experience is like since no one, anywhere has ever actually had one. But just like them, I can describe things as such.

Now take the politics to politics.
lamaros
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Reply #7 on: October 17, 2007, 03:50:52 AM

Playing Half Life 2 is a religious experience? Um, yeah whatever. Exaggerate much?
Playing half life 2 episode 2 after playing portal and coming to the realizations you come to - unless you're a dribbling moron - is LIKE a religious experience. I wouldn't know what an ACTUAL religious experience is like since no one, anywhere has ever actually had one.

So....

Playing half life 2 episode 2 after playing portal and coming to the realizations you come to is like a non-existent thing?

Write better, not faster.
Prospero
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Reply #8 on: October 17, 2007, 04:43:26 AM

Yes it says you play Chell. Just Chell. There's no last name given. Try again.
5150
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Reply #9 on: October 17, 2007, 04:44:18 AM

I was hoping for at least a mention of TF2 :-( ........
Ironwood
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Reply #10 on: October 17, 2007, 04:59:45 AM

Good God, what was the point of writing that article ?

Really ?

"Mr Soft Owl has Seen Some Shit." - Sun Tzu
taolurker
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Reply #11 on: October 17, 2007, 06:25:59 AM

Good God, what was the point of writing that article ?

Really ?

Besides another thread when there are 15 threads already, schild's hard-on for this game or man-love for its devs?

It was either to prove schild can spew a full page of gibberish, with poorly formed sentences:

Quote
After the fantastic failure that was episode 1, Valve had completely redeemed itself in a manner most probably thought was impossible or at least improbable.

Or that he's losing his mind:
Quote
Now, if you think about that last one like a crazy person, actually lends some credence to the idea that the Chell you are playing is, in fact, a clone.

I think it was mostly him trying to tie Portal in with the HL storylines, and a combination of all of those.


I used to write for extinct gaming sites
details available here (unused blog about page)
CharlieMopps
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Reply #12 on: October 17, 2007, 07:26:29 AM

While you say it's the best set of games to come in a box ever, and I agree... I'd have to say "This is what I expect out of games"
Companies like EA are going out and releasing 1 engine with 3 different games using it, with 12 maps each and selling them all separately for $59.99 is a thing of the past. If they want sales they are going to have to start doing shit like this.
Miasma
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Reply #13 on: October 17, 2007, 08:40:04 AM

I don't think Eli is really dead, the adviser took him for transfer to another host like what they were going to do with Breen.  Still a stupid ending though.

Where is all this Cave Johnson info coming from?  I've never heard of him before.

Edit: really, really...
« Last Edit: October 17, 2007, 10:01:01 AM by Miasma »
schild
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Reply #14 on: October 17, 2007, 09:09:52 AM

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Where is all this Cave Johnson info coming from?  I've never heard of him before.

ApertureScience.com

Quote
Good God, what was the point of writing that article ?

Really ?

You don't have to read everything.

Quote
Yes it says you play Chell. Just Chell. There's no last name given. Try again.

So, is the login for Chell Johnson on ApertureScience.com and you're already playing as her which is why you're filling out APPLY and reading a history of Aperture or are you logging in as Cave Johnson... who has no reason to read a history and is ALREADY DEAD? I thought there were some things that were simply already established.

« Last Edit: October 17, 2007, 09:16:49 AM by schild »
schild
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Reply #15 on: October 17, 2007, 09:21:47 AM

Quote
Besides another thread when there are 15 threads already, schild's hard-on for this game or man-love for its devs?

They created something magic. You play MMOGs. You stalk MMOG developers. Get over it.

Also, 2 hours with Portal is better than my entire combined time playing MMOGs. You can say that I'm wrong, but you'd be lying.

Quote
It was either to prove schild can spew a full page of gibberish, with poorly formed sentences:

So, uhm, what? Methinks you aren't one who should be judging. Ever. How many pages was that SWG article?
schild
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Reply #16 on: October 17, 2007, 09:24:18 AM

I was hoping for at least a mention of TF2 :-( ........

If Portal Hadn't come out, I would have been too busy playing TF2 to write something. This wasn't particularly about the orange box.

Quote
Playing half life 2 episode 2 after playing portal and coming to the realizations you come to is like a non-existent thing?

Obviously Jeff Kelly had an inkling of an idea of what I was getting at. But I said what I said to give him my point of view. The metaphor still holds water. You're just picking nits. I think. Your sentence seems malformed.

Also, hat trick.
Comstar
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Reply #17 on: October 17, 2007, 09:35:32 AM

I think the best effect of Portal will be more games ending with Muscial numbers. I always thought there should be more endings like portal. Reboot did it quite well too.

Maybe have GLaDOs sing the saga of half life to the tune of something from Gilbert and Sullervian.

Defending the Galaxy, from the Scum of the Universe, with nothing but a flashlight and a tshirt. We need tanks Boo, lots of tanks!
Litigator
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Reply #18 on: October 17, 2007, 09:59:48 AM

Portal was a really cool Zelda dungeon.
schild
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Reply #19 on: October 17, 2007, 10:25:48 AM

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Portal was a really cool Zelda dungeon.

If Zelda knew how to make dungeons and if Nintendo knew how to WRITE (this is probably their greatest failing as a company, the writing). Maybe. Unfortunately, they don't anymore, so we turn to Valve.

Quote
I think the best effect of Portal will be more games ending with Muscial numbers.

I think this worked precisely because games Don't do that.
Litigator
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Reply #20 on: October 17, 2007, 12:02:57 PM

Zelda had some great dungeons, and Portal was very much a Zelda dungeon, because the central device of a Zelda dungeon is to give you a new item and then build the dungeon's puzzles around the use of that item.  I mean, where else have you seen a block used to weigh down a switch?

I do think this sort of undermine's Nintendo's claim that increased processing power doesn't open game design doors. Physics models in game worlds have been germinating for a few years. Half Life 2 really showed it off with the gravity gun. But Portal is one of the first to really explore some of the more interesting possibilities of what these models can do. I really, really liked the "Speedy thing goes in, speedy thing comes out" puzzles, particularly the one in (I think) room 18, where you use your fall momentum to springboard up the platforms by leapfrogging the holes.


Anyway, you're reading way too much into Portal. I suspect the big future application of this is that Gordon uses a portal gun in one level of Half Life 2: Episode 3
Murgos
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Reply #21 on: October 17, 2007, 12:16:46 PM

I mean, where else have you seen a block used to weigh down a switch?
The opening scene of Raiders of the Lost Ark?  Your argument is specious.

"You have all recieved youre last warning. I am in the process of currently tracking all of youre ips and pinging your home adressess. you should not have commencemed a war with me" - Aaron Rayburn
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Reply #22 on: October 17, 2007, 12:22:15 PM

I mean, where else have you seen a block used to weigh down a switch?
The opening scene of Raiders of the Lost Ark?  Your argument is specious.

God of War?

SnakeCharmer
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Reply #23 on: October 17, 2007, 01:07:35 PM

I finished Portal the other day, and I still have the damn song stuck in my head.
schild
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Reply #24 on: October 17, 2007, 01:18:11 PM

I mean, where else have you seen a block used to weigh down a switch?
The opening scene of Raiders of the Lost Ark?  Your argument is specious.

God of War?
He meant Older than Zelda, Ookii.

To which I say, Dungeons and Dragons has been doing it for 30 years. Making it visual doesn't make it groundbreaking.

I don't even want to get into how long that sort of shit has been done in books.
Prospero
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Reply #25 on: October 17, 2007, 02:32:31 PM

So, is the login for Chell Johnson on ApertureScience.com and you're already playing as her which is why you're filling out APPLY and reading a history of Aperture or are you logging in as Cave Johnson... who has no reason to read a history and is ALREADY DEAD? I thought there were some things that were simply already established.
You aren't running apply.exe as "Chell Johnson" it just happens to be an executable you can run. If you login with any random name you have access to apply.exe. Only if you login as "cjohnson" do you get access to either notes.exe or a functioning version of interrogate( sadly we dont know any employee names yet.) While we do know Cave was dying, there actually isn't any proof that he's dead. Anyway, if he is dead how was it he was bringing his daughter to work?

 edit to make the english work a little better
« Last Edit: October 17, 2007, 03:42:02 PM by Prospero »
Fordel
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Reply #26 on: October 17, 2007, 03:07:04 PM

There is a Halo story page site, and a Marathon story page site.


Clearly Schild should start a Portal/Half-life story page site, where he and like minded individuals can debate conspiracy level theory idea's about the Half-Life universe with each other.


I'm quite sincere, I adore your insane passion  Heart



ps. There probably already is such a site, I just haven't, looked.

and the gate is like I TOO AM CAPABLE OF SPEECH
Litigator
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Reply #27 on: October 17, 2007, 03:55:00 PM

There is a Halo story page site, and a Marathon story page site.


Clearly Schild should start a Portal/Half-life story page site, where he and like minded individuals can debate conspiracy level theory idea's about the Half-Life universe with each other.


I'm quite sincere, I adore your insane passion  Heart



ps. There probably already is such a site, I just haven't, looked.



Yeah... I'm being so sincere right now.
lamaros
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Reply #28 on: October 17, 2007, 06:35:53 PM

Quote
Playing half life 2 episode 2 after playing portal and coming to the realizations you come to is like a non-existent thing?

Obviously Jeff Kelly had an inkling of an idea of what I was getting at. But I said what I said to give him my point of view. The metaphor still holds water. You're just picking nits. I think. Your sentence seems malformed.

I was picking nits, and will continue doing so by saying that it was your sentence I was trying to construct there, not my own. I didn't see the point of the article either, but who cares really? Not me!

Portal good.
Aez
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Reply #29 on: October 17, 2007, 07:15:14 PM

The orange box is indeed great.

For the story speculations and half-life/portal tie in however...  Remember half-life 1 ending?  Not has good has orange box but there was a good enough suspense and a good deal of unanswered questions.  They failed to deliver or capitalise on that story line.  Maybe in episode 3, lets hope.

The problem with these hidden truths storyline is that they never seems to live to the expectation at the end.  Lost? Full metal alchemist?? Evangelion???
pxib
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Reply #30 on: October 18, 2007, 02:53:32 AM

One of my favorite games evar is Eric Chahi's "Out of the World".

The controls are very simple, and the player has a small set of simple tools (all of them activated by either tapping or holding down a single button) which can be used in a variety of ways. The game is about learning the use of those tools by dying a lot. It only takes four or five hours to get through it the first time and it can be replayed in two or so.

This simple gameplay rests comfortably on some delightful world design, several fun cinematic tropes, and whimsical sets and animation. The experience is a delight from start (to this awful portion in a cave, and then from that awful portion in the cave) to finish.

Ico does the same thing, now Portal has as well. They're short, gameplay is simple and nothing ever slows the player down for long. You solve some satisfying puzzles without stressing too long or going to find a walkthrough, everything builds to a narrative climax, and then you win and there's a pleasant denouncement.

It's like going to the movies, except you're the star.

In Half Life 2 I got bogged down fighting the airship outside of Black Mesa's new HQ, but redeemed itself by giving me the super gravity gun at the end for some pointlessly godlike ass kicking. Episode One lost my interest as soon as they took the super gravity gun away and put me in that garage dropping cars on insects. I realized I was just trudging through Half Life 2 backwards at double speed, not an exciting proposition. The narrative stalled and no new plot threads were revealed and I got to the end because I felt obligated to, not because I really wanted to. Episode Two kept me struggling through tedious portions like the insect cave because I felt like something was actually happening in the story, but as soon as I realized that I was going to have to fight an perceptually endless stream of striders and hunters, I put the game down.

I'm not -that- interested. I'll finish it when Episode Three comes out... or when Episode Three is selling for $15.00 and comes with some other cute, well-constructed game that's less challenging than it is fun.

Heck, I'd have to spend that much just to go see a movie.

if at last you do succeed, never try again
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Reply #31 on: October 18, 2007, 07:52:01 AM

Half Life 2 Episode III without Portal Episode II won't be worth it.

Defending the Galaxy, from the Scum of the Universe, with nothing but a flashlight and a tshirt. We need tanks Boo, lots of tanks!
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Reply #32 on: October 18, 2007, 09:28:46 AM

Half Life 2 Episode III without Portal Episode II won't be worth it.

Unless they're both the same game...
LK
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Reply #33 on: October 18, 2007, 03:33:44 PM

Half Life 2 Episode III without Portal Episode II won't be worth it.

Unless they're both the same game...

Anything's possible at this point.  It's just a matter of them recognizing the need to do it.

"Then there's the double-barreled shotgun from Doom 2 - no-one within your entire household could be of any doubt that it's been fired because it sounds like God slamming a door on his fingers." - Yahtzee Croshaw
Calantus
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Reply #34 on: October 18, 2007, 10:45:33 PM

But really, if you haven't beaten Portal by now then you're part of the problem.

It requires steam right? How often can someone re-iterate a position before people throw things at them you reckon? I'm just curious is all.
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