SEATTLE — Valve has running a hands-off demo of the co-op play for Portal 2 during the Penny Arcade Expo.
The Game features two robots, an orange one and a blue one, that Glados has given a set of missions too. The game still plays with the expected commentary, where Glados will say things like "make you wish you could die," after one of the Robots gets "killed.”
The Portal colors were modified slightly, so that it makes it easier to tell which player shot which side of which portal. One portal is red and yellow, and the other is blue and purple. They also added a new “ping” tool. The developers noticed that even when the two players are in the same room telling each other what to do would be tricky, especially with how tricky some of Portal’s puzzles can be. The tool points a marker where you want the other player to place a portal. This helps coordinating, where you can tell the other side what you need them to do.
The co-op missions will be about twice the length of the original portal game. They will be the same length as the single player missions.
They then showed off some of the new puzzle devices in the game. There is a laser, which can be redirected with light cubes, but they require extra caution in the co-op mode that you don’t accidentally use it on the other player. There is a light platform that the robots can walk across, and like all other objects in the game, the new ones will move through the portals. They showed off one of the ways that two players will be needed in the new game, by having the light path going over the acid from one player’s portal, than needing to change the direction to go down another hallway. If the first player moved their portal, the path they are standing on would disappear, and both robots would fall into the acid.
They showed another co-op solution in making more practical a move that was previously a fun stunt to pull in the game. It had been fun to shoot a portal on the ceiling and the floor, so that the player falls from infinitely gaining speed to terminal velocity. In the original one, this, while still being a fun move, wasn’t very practical since the screen moves so fast that it’s near impossible to redirect the upper portal anywhere useful. With two players though, one player starts falling through the other player’s portals, and then they redirect the output to a desired location, shooting the falling player out at maximum velocity, without requiring a huge cliff.
They also added more comic relief to the game. The two robots can wave at each other, and even hug. It’s very funny to watch one of them "forget" to hit a switch, killing the other, and then offer a hug in apology. Though in a non-demo situation, I’m not sure how often either move would be used.
The video ended with a demonstration of the new features of the game, and the two robots preparing to begin their task. I’m looking forward to this when it’s released on Feb 9, 2011, on the Xbox 360, PC, Mac and PlayStation 3.