In the final moments of Portal 2, I’m reminded why I love these games so much. Intrigued? Then it’s time for Mark to finish Portal 2.
The Finale: Want You Gone
Sometimes, I think about how integrated video games are into our culture, and it’s just weird. As I said when I started Mark Plays, I didn’t grow up with video games in my life. it’s always been a subculture I was terrified to join, too! What little interaction I had with other gamers in my teenage years was always negative. I didn’t play the right games, and the few games I did know, I wasn’t very good at those either. (I was decent at the Tony Hawk series; I could beat them, but if I ever went head-to-head with my friends, they’d annihilate me.) Plus, I grew up poor, so I just didn’t have the resources to get back into gaming.
It was great to discover over the past few years why gaming is such a huge part of people’s lives. I just happened to have been recommended the right set of games, and it just clicked. Honestly, if I had more free time (HAHAHAHA WHAT A CONCEPT HAHAHA FREE TIME HAHAHAHA), I would burn away most of it playing video games. I have so much I need to catch up on!
So I’m glad that I’m going to be taking this journey through the world of video games with all of you. While I was watching the closing scene and the credits to Portal 2, thinking of what I wanted to write about, I realized just how fun this is going to be. It’s not that I haven’t thought critically about video games in the past. (YOU SHOULD SEE THE NOVELS IN MY HEAD ABOUT UNCHARTED OR KATAMARI DAMACY. Oh my god.) But suddenly, I realized just how awesome video games are these days. I mean, if you take the entirety of the Portal series, I honestly believe this is a (excuse the unfortunate pun) game-changing entry into this world. It’s meta, it’s funny, and it takes the concept of a puzzle game into an area I’ve never seen before. (Though I have to admit I have played so few puzzle games that I might be stating total bullshit right now. PERHAPS MY THOUGHTS WILL CHANGE.)
Plus, Portal 2 is gorgeously designed in nearly every aspect. The story is stellar. The colors, the shading, the graphics, the physicality of the game, they all make this a unique and thought-provoking experience. Oh god, the end sequences are animated so well and THAT FUCKING SONG. Jonathan Coulton and Ellen McLain return for “Want You Gone,” a bittersweet ode to Chell from GLaDOS. Do I read some confused emotions from GLaDOS regarding her feelings for Chell? I TOTALLY DO. And she says goodbye to her “only friend,” and that’s totally Caroline. Caroline/GLaDOS is my new OTP, you can’t tell me otherwise. But honestly, I know I sound like I’m being silly. However, I think it’s pretty spectacular that I can feel so many things about a fictional robot and another character who I never once meet. I’m just at a point where I’m so done with analyses of video games as nothing but mindless entertainment. Portal 2 just told an entire story through a video game. Just because the medium is different, why is it any worse than a film or a book? Why can’t we be entertained and intellectually fulfilled in this way? Plus, this is a story that unfolds through agency and choice. Isn’t that awesome? YES. YES IT IS.
Anyway, I had quite a few screencaps I wanted to get to, and I want to talk about how Mark Plays Dragon Age is going to work just so y’all are slightly prepared for the posts starting tomorrow. LET’S DO THIS.
GLaDOS’s character growth over the course of this series is probably my favorite element of the game. Here, at the end, she lets Chell go. It’s not that she necessarily forgives her for what she did. She just wants to get on with her life of testing and not have to deal with Chell’s possible intrusion ever again. Secretly, I bet she respects. She totally does! This is my headcanon.
Despite that I noticed the higher quality in the render, I still thought I had to fight the turrets and panicked at this point. Then they started playing music. Then my heart swelled with joy. I LOVE YOU, TOO, TURRETS. I LOVE YOU.
Yep, I totally lost it at this part and started tear up. The turrets are honoring me. With a goddamn song. I’M SORRY I KNOCKED SO MANY OF YOU OVER.
IT’S A WINDOWS DESKTOP BACKGROUND LOL
HOLY SHIT, CHELL ESCAPED. She made it to the outside world!!!
No, I really feel bad for Wheatley now. He wants to take it all back! Now he’s left to drift alone in space.
LOL JUST KIDDING HE HAS A FRIEND TO KEEP HIM COMPANY.
I had a fantastic time playing this game. It’s been a challenge to think of how I would write these posts, but I’m glad I’m doing this. It’s a work in progress, too, so I’ll be changing the posts starting tomorrow as Dragon Age: Origins begins in full. I’ve asked a few close friends who have played the game what sort of structure the game has (without spoiling much for me), and I’ve decided that since it is story-based, I’m going to do entries that are more like Mark Reads and Watches. Think of it like a diary of my experience through the game. You’ll see what device I am going to use to narrate the posts, and it’s already proved to be very hilariously thrilling. PURPOSEFUL CLIFFHANGERS.
All right, onwards I go. I’m going to organize a Portal 2 co-op campaign really soon, so I’ll post the info about that ASAP as a separate post. I’ll figure out a way to get folks from the community to be my co-op partner, too! THIS IS GOING TO BE SUPER EXCITING. Oh god, Dragon Age: Origins is finally tomorrow THIS IS WONDERFUL.
And now, since I cannot be spoiled anymore, PLEASE TELL ME WHAT I MISSED. What easter eggs or tricks or little jokes did I not notice? I WANT TO KNOW ALL OF THEM.
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