So I rented Portal 2 yesterday. I didn’t buy it as a) I’m not buying any games until L.A Noire comes out for the sake of saving money and b) I’ll come to b in a moment.
I’m not going to have a huge amount of time with it. By the time I got home yesterday, I had some things to do before I went out again for the evening. Today I’ve played it for about an hour but now I’m writing this up, just before I head out to visit relatives. I’ve only got the rental till Saturday so maybe I’ll find more time to play it tomorrow. We’ll see.
The thing is, I’m not convinced the game is for me. Hugely controversial I know but I’m not entirely sure why I should feel bad about even saying it.
I can appreciate why people love Portal and the sequel. I’ve played Portal for long enough to know what to expect. In my one hour with the second one, I could certainly appreciate the great comedic turn by Stephen Merchant and seeing how the plot and dialogue develops is certainly a plus here. But I’m just not overly taken by the puzzles. Why? Simply because I’m not a big fan of lateral thinking type puzzles as I learnt with the first one. Which is surely fine, right?
I know countless people whose opinions I greatly respect, who also happen to not stand beat em ups or JRPGs for example. That’s fine. There’s a huge wealth of genres out there. I don’t believe anyone, even people who try to make a living out of their opinion, should have to like the same things in equal measure (although appreciating why a game works is a different matter entirely).
I suspect however if I made a big deal on Twitter about how I wasn’t overly fussed about Portal 2, I’d be virtually lynched. Indeed, I wouldn’t be surprised if someone is astonished and maybe even disappointed (although I suspect I’m not that important!) that I’d blog it here too.
I do wonder if it’s something currently exclusive to the gaming world. With films, I don’t know anyone who feels that they HAVE to like horror films, romantic comedies and arty indie films in equal measures. I know many people who appreciate a well made film of any of these genres, but love them equally? Most definitely not.
In this case, it’d be like giving someone who despises football, Fifa 11, and wondering why they hated it. Hopefully they’d understand what worked and why football fans would like it, but they themselves wouldn’t be keen at all.
It’s something that I think maybe needs to change, away from the fanboyism stuff and how we all have to like the same things. We really, really don’t. There’s a lot to choose from out there and a huge amount of variety when you look around.
So yes, while I can appreciate why so many people should rightly enjoy the two Portal games, it’s just not for me. Sorry and all that.