Although I had always heard great things about the portal series, I was just recently drawn into it for the Portal 2 Co-op. Having never played 1, I had no idea what to really expect from the game, even though I had heard about it before.
I have to say that it was definitely one of the most challenging and thought-provoking co-operative puzzle games I’ve ever played. After finishing the tutorial, we immediately skipped to the extra campaign, art therapy. This destroyed the natural learning curve for the game by introducing all the different gameplay elements at once, but at the same time provided for a very challenging experience where you had to not only figure out what these new elements did, but how to use them effectively (the blue gel for example).
After going to the normal levels, we realized how well the game introduced each of the elements. The learning curve was excellent, the gameplay always challenging, and Glados became one of my favorite video game characters, with her sarcastic humor keeping you amused throughout the entire game.
As for environment.. the game was crafted perfectly. You awaken after an unknown period of time, where much of the aperture facility has rusted into disarray. It just really feels as if you have been thrust into an aged robot-run testing center.
Though there are no bogeymans, the game cultivates a surprisingly dark atmosphere, with cynical humor and tongue in cheek thrown throughout, and a distinct sense that it is a libertarian rapture gone wrong. It is outlandish in it’s own way, and the sci-fi themes that it explores are interesting to consider; the game delves into the origins of aperture and GlaDOS.
All in all, a very polished game which I highly recommend for anyone to play, either in single or multiplayer modes.