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Fans protest Portal 2 on Metacritic

Influx of 0/10 ratings bring user score to its knees, despite year's highest critic score

Angry customers have been using Metacritic's user review system to voice complaints over the PC version of Portal 2, with the critically-acclaimed title's rating dropping as low as 5.1 as a result.

At time of press the PC version's user score is 7.2, with the Xbox 360 version at 6.7 and the PlayStation 3 version on 6.6. The critic score is currently 95 out of 100 - the highest for any title this year.

The complaints appear to come primarily from PC users, upset that the game is a console port - and even includes references to turning off the 'console' when saving. Most anger, though, seems to be directed at the online store - which is already filled with downloadable content.

The volume of day one downloadable content seems to have come as a surprise to many PC users, unused to the console-style arrangement. They have also expressed disappointment at the game's short running time and the controversial ARG promotional campaign - which tempted players into buying unrelated indie titles.

Although Metacritic is an often controversial tool amongst games publishers and developers, usually due to the critic score - which many publishers treat as a key metric for quality. Generally less attention is paid to the user score, although such a volume of negative comments for a highly anticipated game does have the potential to adversely affect sales.

Publisher Electronic Arts and developer Valve are yet to comment publicly on the controversy.

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Latest comments (86)

Jamie Watson Studying Bachelor of Games & Interactive Entertainment, Queensland University of Technology10 years ago
this is rather interesting as many people who own it say its great and they really enjoy it.

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They didnt dish out enough cake
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Farhang Namdar Lead Game Designer Larian Studios 10 years ago
Hahahaha it's clear portal fans are losers :P
Like Valve cares about user reviews on Metacritic, just loving the childishness!
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Show all comments (86)
Jason Stewart Associate Producer, Sony Computer Entertainment Europe10 years ago
Great game, thoroughly enjoyed!

But leaving messages relating to the lead platform in the PC build is a schoolboy error on their QA part, but it happens.

@Farhang, if it's PC users complaining about it being a PC port, why does that make Portal fans losers?
And don't we all feel a little disappointed when a good game finishes to soon, if this is the complaint of the console users? Surely user reviews are a valid way to express consumer opinion about a product? Why is this childish?

Anyway, can't wait to play the co-op mode with my son and let him to all the hard work :P
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Richard Gardner Artist, Crytek10 years ago
The community response has been very childish if you ask me. Portal 2 is a great game with a vast amount of entertainment and content to justify its value. I also found a lot of users reviews to contain widely speculative comments on the DLC with many people obviously not even knowing what it contains.
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Lawrence Makin Audio 10 years ago
Great game. Metacritic trolls are idiots. They probably didn't even play the first.
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Terence Gage Freelance writer 10 years ago
Well, this is pretty pathetic. If some gamers cannot accept that for most developers and publishers the consoles are a far more focal and profitable platform these days, then perhaps they should take some time out from gaming for a while. Similarly, DLC can sometimes leave a bitter taste, but 95% of the time it's totally ignorable and its omission will not affect the main game.

But, with over 4 million copies of Portal sold I imagine this will be another massive success for Valve, and I doubt they're too worried about a handful of petty and bitter Metacritic users.

Edited 1 times. Last edit by Terence Gage on 20th April 2011 11:43am

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Tom Halls Creative Account Manager, Electronic Arts10 years ago
Ridiculously childish from users. The game is superb, easily GOTY in my eyes. Enjoyed every minute of it.
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William Chan European Media Sales Planner, Electronic Arts10 years ago
Terence, I think the upset is caused not because it's on a console, but because Valve have long been the bastion of top quality PC games and putting the users first.
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Jonathan Doyle Writer 10 years ago
Personally I've been enjoying the hell out of it and I want some of the DLC. The wife does too and she's working out which bits are worth the money. I honestly don't get why anyone would complain but the internet is never satisfied.
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Todd Lambert QA Burn Lab Lead, Activision Blizzard Ireland10 years ago
It was a 4chan troll attack.
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Jason Stewart Associate Producer, Sony Computer Entertainment Europe10 years ago
Well considering one user gave it a score of zero, yet had nothing but praise for the game in his comment. I think the user score can pretty much be written off as being as accurate as Fernando Torres in a Chelsea shirt :P
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Ken Addeh10 years ago
I can see it being a legitimate complaint (if it actually is a legitimate complaint). Many, many games ported over to the PC have been left by the wayside. Considering that Valve mentioned anyone getting a PS3 version would be getting a free PC version, it's not impossible that they'd gone rogue by putting console first for Portal2.

Let's just hope it isn't the norm.

This kind of thing happened before...remember the Mass amounts of 1 Star Amazon ratings for Spore because of their DRM?
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David Stenow10 years ago
I've never understood the point of Metacritic user reviews. While I enjoy the aggregated scores from respected media outlets, the superior user opinion of a game would be sales numbers. Metacritic user reviews are often spammed with 0 scored on big releases, seemingly out of spite.
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Martin Watts Editor-in-Chief, BNBGAMING10 years ago
Having a message in the PC version of the game warning players to not switch off their "consoles" is a bit of a schoolboy error. However, I fail to see how it in any way can truly affect the player's overall enjoyment of the game.

What a load of phooey.
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Victor Zuylen Editor, Killzone Community, Guerrilla Games10 years ago
Ugh... Reading the "Day 1 DLC means it was obviously finished when the game went to press and should therefore have been included on the disc" fallacy always sends me into a frothing rage. :-(

Great game, btw.
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Sam Brown Lead Audio Programmer, TT Games10 years ago
"and even includes references to turning off the 'console' when saving"

Unless they fixed this very quickly, this is wrong. Mine says just "Saving game".
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Tom Allen Studying PhD, University of Sydney10 years ago
Actually, given that Metacritic user ratings have been biased and broken for years, I think the fact that /v/ (a 4chan board full of shit-stirrers) has drawn such media attention to the problem can only be a good thing in the long term. Youtube's like/dislike tally is a far more elegant solution to the dual problems of a) needing to show users the current user opinion prior to them voting, and b) that doing so is statistically corrupt.
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Pier Castonguay Programmer 10 years ago
PC gamer collective are stronger than ever, and I admit i'm one of them. Consoles are getting old (slow hardware) comparing to PC and gamers want to see something better, like could happens on PC exclusive titles.

Still, whatever happens, even if the product is perfect, there will always be more bad comments than good comments on a game/movie, that's how the human is.
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Richard Westmoreland Senior Game Designer, Codemasters Birmingham10 years ago
Same, it does say it, but only if you save manually and it's only there for less than a second.
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James Prendergast Process Specialist 10 years ago
I have to say that i'm not one of the complainers but i can see a few valid complaints that are labelled "childish" by "childish" developers. The potato pack ARG thing to release the game early without actually, really releasing it early (i.e. no benefit other than effectively conning some people into buying something they otherwise wouldn't so that they think they're getting benefit for something they want) is a really childish thing to do from a consumer standpoint.

I don't know how long the game is in SP but i was happy with a £20 price point for the original and this is around £35 for me and i think i'll probably be happy with that.

As for the day one DLC... I mean, it's all about perception (i haven't looked at the cost as yet). Don't release it day one: give people a chance to play through the game for a day or two without "trying to thrust it down their throats" as they're about to sign in for the first time.
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Tommy Thompson Studying Artificial Intelligence (PhD), University of Strathclyde10 years ago
The potato pack situation is really more of an issue with the developer and their marketing. It really should not be used as means to score the game poorly. The review should only reflect on the game itself, and factors that pertain to it. The DLC may be considered to an extent, but still, this is petty.

It's just another example of 'Internet Dickwad Theory'.
(for the two people who don't know it:

Edited 1 times. Last edit by Tommy Thompson on 20th April 2011 3:09pm

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Frankie Kang Producer / Consultant, First Post LLC10 years ago
The game rocked. It could have been a DS port for all I care, the experience was priceless.
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Tim Carter Designer - Writer - Producer 10 years ago
I can't stand listening to the Valve lapdogs on this board. It's as if anything Valve does is right by virtue of it being done by Valve.

One thing I have noticed about Valve, having worked extensively with their tool set, is how sloppy their work is under the hood. Even if their creative is great on the frontend, their backend tools are haphazardly designed, sometimes don't work, and have clunky interfaces. So the console mistake is really in keeping with that basic Valve sloppiness.

Edited 2 times. Last edit by Tim Carter on 20th April 2011 3:13pm

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Josh Freeman Studying Computer Science, University of Huddersfield10 years ago
Game waaay to short and easy.
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James Persaud Game Programmer, Firefly Studios10 years ago
@Dr Chee I heard the cake is a lie.
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James Prendergast Process Specialist 10 years ago
@ Tim Carter:

I think it's possibly an even worse issue than something that simple. There have been a number of times recently on where "the consumer/customer" has expressed their dislike in some form or other of events or traits of a product and, instead of thinking clearly and saying "well, that doesn't matter because the game wasn't aimed purely at them" or "That's something to consider in our own products" whatever.... we're seeing a lashing out. Something that i thought the account registration was supposed to reduce. If the site is to be a more professional-focused endeavour it would be nice to see people act appropriately rather than just become another message board venting system which is just as bad as the score whitewash in the article in some respects...
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Terence Burns Senior Programmer, Epic Games10 years ago
I had a look yesterday morning at this, and the rating was as low as 4.2...
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Mark Venturelli Game Designer, Critical Studio10 years ago
I believe that the main source of fan rage is the DLC. A lot of developers try to dimiss the "Day 1 DLC means it was already done" attitude, but it is very common and, to a certain extent, very valid.

Microtransactions for a free or budget game is one thing, but a full-priced game is a serious investment. Users have the right to feel "cheated" if they perceive that developers could give just that extra bit of love for their money, but chose instead to make extra on it. Just because some people pay, doesn't mean that you are not alienating some of your user base when you do that, specially if the content being sold is not obtainable by purely in-game means.

I believe that this is a valid point that should be discussed by us developers, and we should listen to the consumers instead of labelling cases such as this as "trolling" and moving forward.

Edited 1 times. Last edit by Mark Venturelli on 20th April 2011 4:00pm

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Michael Vandendriessche Studying Computer Science, K.U. Leuven10 years ago
This is ridiculous...
It bothers me that so many people are stupid...
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Maria Violentano Digital Policy Developer, Department for Education10 years ago
Surely whether a game is a port or not, it's the user experience that actually matters? The PC version plays like a dream, at no point did the game suffer for it, of which the same cannot be said for many other ported games.

It would be a shame if sales took an undeserved hit over the farcical Metacritic situation but given the figures released today of 4 million Portal sales not including Steam, surely Valve won't be losing too much sleep over this?

(Anecdotally, I don't think I've ever seen so many Steam contacts playing the same game at the same time as I did yesterday evening.)
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Pete Thompson Editor 10 years ago
Very good game, Enjoyed the original on the 360 just as much as I did this one..
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Neil Young Programmer, Rebellion Developments10 years ago
Calling it a "port" in this case is weird anyway - it's a multiplatform release, it's not been "ported" to anything.

And why is "port" a term of derision anyway? Tetris on the gameboy was a port...
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Barry De La Rosa Senior Staff Writer, Dennis Publishing10 years ago
What I find scary is how many developers in this thread find it easy to dismiss gamers' complaints without any recourse to evidence or reason. Most can be summed as "Gamers are stupid. I thought the game was great!"

a) what you thought of the game is irrelevant to the question at hand
b) the fact that so many gamers complained should cause pause for thought at least
c) most gamers aren't complaining about the quality of the game, but the cynical marketing techniques used to drum up hype

Sure guys, go ahead and blame it on some trolls on 4chan, rather than owning up to the fact that Valve made some stupid moves on this launch.
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David Spender Lead Programmer 10 years ago
I guess I'm the only one that finds $90 worth of Day 1 DLC for a 'complete' $50 game to be a bit absurd. No one can tell me that for my $90 I'm getting 2x the content that is in the entire game.

I went to the grocery store the other day. A gallon of spring water was 69 cents. Right next to it was a 24 ounce bottle for $1.09.

That's just the way the world works I guess. Only with the water you can't get a whole case of bottles for less than .69 after 6 months.

I'll be waiting for the goty edition before I buy this 4 hour game.
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Tim Wright Managing Director, Tantrumedia Limited10 years ago
I have to agree with Barry on this one... this level of protest is hard to maintain without some strong feeling behind it. "There's no smoke without fire" would seem to apply here. At the end of the day, the people 'trolling' Metacritic are the people keeping Valve in business, so they need to pay attention and make reparations where possible, or at least learn from what happened here.
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Abraham Tatester Producer 10 years ago
So to anyone who has played it — how short is it? Still waiting for my pre-ordered copy.

For $60, I was certainly expecting something longer than the original game, which took me between five to six hours to complete on the first play.

And what does the DLC consist of ... more levels?
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Frankie Kang Producer / Consultant, First Post LLC10 years ago
And I thought the name calling was relegated to fan forums and not amongst peers. Sadly I am mistaken.
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Jason Stewart Associate Producer, Sony Computer Entertainment Europe10 years ago
@Abraham - That depends on how easy you find the puzzles :)
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Jason Stewart Associate Producer, Sony Computer Entertainment Europe10 years ago
@Abraham - That depends on how easy you find the puzzles :)
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Chris Elwyn Animator 10 years ago
I own it; I played through the single player campaign in around 8 hours but it never felt like a short game - perfectly paced, brilliantly written, and very well polished. I had a great time. Also had a go at the online co-op with a friend of mine (no VOIP, no headsets) and we managed to clear a couple of opening co-op runs in about 4 hours of gaming. Again, hugely enjoyable experience.

I looked at the DLC, but from what I can tell it's more or less the same system that's already been implemented in TF2 - entirely cosmetic stuff (like a top hat for your character) that you can get as drops or awards anyway by playing the game. So you can pay some cash and save yourself some time, or you can just play through the title and get stuff awarded. Personally I'm fine simply not spending the money.

It's not a 4 hour game, it's not a bad console port, I can't really comment on the ARG thing because I didn't get involved - it appears to me that most of the people raging on the boards are just building on previously inaccurate comments.
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Sam Brown Lead Audio Programmer, TT Games10 years ago
@Abraham: I'm not done yet, but It's taken me two lunchtimes and an evening to get about halfway (according to the chapter list).

And apparently there is a problem with the Steam timer which could be the source of the 4-hour complaints (details here).

Edited 1 times. Last edit by Sam Brown on 20th April 2011 4:42pm

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Taylan Kay Game Designer / Programmer / Marketer 10 years ago
Well, I think most people are missing the point. An angry customer is an angry customer you have to deal with, whether they are justified in their anger or not. It is not about the objective quality of a game, it about the business of it. So the real question is whether there is enough customer anger to hurt the sales of Portal 2. If there is, then Valve and EA would be idiots to ignore it.
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Howard Coldham Programmer 10 years ago
Just to clarify some points:

The DLC in portal 2 consists of gestures, hats and skins for the co-op characters in the game. There are no new levels.

The game took me about 6 hours to complete and that was with a fair amount of exploring. The Co-op is then another 5 hours or so.

In total you are looking at about 12 hours of gameplay for your £30 then £30 worth of DLC in the form of things to make you look pretty.

I personally think it is a great game but sadly lacks replayability due to there being no dlc levels and as far as I know no source SDK update to even allow the community to make new levels. I am sure Valve is working on this though.

Would I pay £30 for it in hindsight? Damn straight I would.

Will I be paying £30 for the DLC? Hell no.
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Abraham Tatester Producer 10 years ago
@ Jason - Yeah, you're right about that! As with any puzzle game, subsequent play-through are going to be much shorter.

@ Chris - Thanks for your thoughts about the DLC. I don't care at all about cosmetic stuff (or TF2 hats) but I think I would feel rather cheated if the DLC (at the time of release) consisted of fresh levels.

Sounds like it's the people who spent hours and hours on the ARG that lost out the most. But they presumably had time to waste anyway!
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Kyle Gaywood Studying Computer Games Design, University of Huddersfield10 years ago
irs going to sell well regardless. FACT!
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Daniel Harty Audio Capture Specialist, Electronic Arts10 years ago
I guess everybody has the right to voice their opinions. I wouldn't remove their comments from metacritic or even comment on them.

I downloaded Portal 2 yesterday via Steam and thought it was fantastic which is a stark contrast from what I was expecting (didn't expect it to be so funny, didn't expect the new mechanics to be as interesting as the originals).

Unfortunately the world revolves around consoles now, so efficiency dictates that increasingly one of the consoles will be the primarily developed platform rather than the tradition PC.

Sorry guys - sabotaging a truly outstanding game's user metacritic won't change that.
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Jeremy Glazman Programmer 10 years ago
"Hahahaha it's clear portal fans are losers :P"

@Farhang that's a really professional comment from a supposed 'lead game designer'. When designing a game, do you normally hold your own audience in such contempt?

I was going buy Portal 2 without thinking twice until I saw this. Didn't realize it was $50 (on Steam) with loads of day 1 DLC. I'm not really interested anymore. I'll wait a few years until it drops to a normal price maybe, or gets bundled with more content. There's plenty of great games (on Steam and elsewhere) priced appropriately to keep me busy until then.

BTW, I've never seen such a 'fanboy' response in the comments on this site. Thought I had been accidentally redirected to Kotaku for a moment...
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Robert O' Leary Studying Computing, Cork Institute of Technology10 years ago
User reviews are possibly the most reliable reviews out there, on one condition, there's a LOT of them. Enough of them to outweigh the trolls and idiots, it works great in a controlled enviornment like IMDB, but unfortunately places like MetaCritic seem to have gotten out of control and possibly don't have enough legitimate users rating games properly, so the game gets overflowed by trolls and elitists.

It's probably true that the game is ported from the console rather than properly made for the PC, but that doesn't stop the fact that it's an amazing game and it still runs smooth as hell with beautiful graphics. It's a stupid reason to rate a game 0 or anything below 5, since the quality is supreme, as with all of Valve's releases.

Maybe if more people decided to join MetaCritic and give their review, it would fix the issue, as the majority would properly outweigh the minority.
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Tommy Thompson Studying Artificial Intelligence (PhD), University of Strathclyde10 years ago

Irrespective of how people are reacting on this board, the fact of the matter is that the complaints being raised do not impact the quality and entertainment value of the game. So, in all fairness, it shouldn't be used to rate a game on metacritic.

If they have a problem with marketing, DLC pricing/release and cross-platform localisation issues, it should be brought up elsewhere, i.e. on support forums, on general chat forums, contacting the supplier directly, starting facebook groups etc. The issue is not with their opinion of the game, but the exploitation of a rating system that should carry reviews and opinions that will not be hindered by editorial mandate or advertising partners. The reviews should make an opinion of the GAME, not the politics that surround it, the GAME.
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Temi Web design 10 years ago
Interesting that the word "childish" is used so often here. I hate that word. You don't think people should care about it so they are being childish if they do? The word should not be used without some serious qualification.

I have never put valve in as high regard as so many people seem to have. If they are going to start milking their customers even though they have the financial backing of their steam platform then they deserve all the bad press and user contempt that they get. They for one shouldn't be putting out fully priced games and paid for DLC

Edited 1 times. Last edit by Temi on 20th April 2011 5:11pm

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Shane Estanislao Sr. Environment Artist, Sony Computer Entertainment America10 years ago
I gave it a zero because the number reminded me of a portal.

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Jason Stewart Associate Producer, Sony Computer Entertainment Europe10 years ago

Why not 10, for a portal and a light beam, or even 8 for both the orange and blue portal atop of one another :)

Like the comment though!
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Mark Dygert Lead Character Animator, Her Interactive10 years ago
I personally haven't had time to play it yet but when I do it will be on the PC, I really hope its not a horrible console port like just about every other PC game that gets released. Please Valve... not you too.

Just give consoles a mouse and a keyboard and get rid of all this controller vs mouse nonsense. Just finish the conversion from home arcade machine to what they really are, cheap PC's that come without a monitor. Console gamers who don't have PC's will love the added functionality and PC gamers won't have to deal with developers/publishers designing a game one way and half-assing a port to the other.

Edited 1 times. Last edit by Mark Dygert on 20th April 2011 5:32pm

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Klaus Preisinger Freelance Writing 10 years ago
People are not stupid. They realize that what used to be 40-50 Dollar games are slowly turning into the front-end for microtransaction stores. Not every player might be able to eloquently express his disgust over development resources going into additional sales opportunities instead of the game itself, but the unconscious reactions amounts to a complaint about the same.

A deeply involved gamer, who paid $1000+ for his PC rig will ask tough questions. He will want to know if something was included for the benefit of the game, or the benefit of increasing the amount of cash generated from the average user.

Games are no longer judged by their quality alone. They are also scrutinized for their business model and the way they treat the user. We live in a climate where nobody wants to get caught appearing to be greedy. Scrooge bashing has become a new sport. There is no shortage of games, the average player does not have the time to play them all, so publicly rejecting 50% of the games and never playing them does not have a downside really.
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Mark Dygert Lead Character Animator, Her Interactive10 years ago
I love Valve games. Every one of them has gone on to give me countless hours of entertainment. The user generated content is great and always extends the life of the titles and its always great to see Valve introduce new things at little cost to them to keep the community happy and chugging along.

The best example I can think of this in recent history is TeamFortress2. If you look at the console versions they're dead. If you look at the PC community its alive and kicking. People are generating new maps and models and this leads to all kinds of great game play experiences. I hope... that any future Portal2 community that springs up isn't just a message board where console gamers gather to bitch and moan about "teh man holding them down". I hope that any communities that spring up are productive, creative and hot beds for users to jump in get their feet wet and help contribute to something they really love.

Those are the communities I miss and what has been killed off and replaced with total garbage as consoles took over.
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Benjamin Dixon Studying Computer Games Design and Programming, Staffordshire University10 years ago

I do believe that Valve are going to be releasing a map editor for the community soon enough. It says as much on the product page on Steam anyway.

As for the game itself, I really enjoyed it and will definitely be spending more time on it. As for the views of the dlc, I can see where people are coming from but it's not like Valve are trying something new here. It's been done many times before and it's definitely not the last time we will be seeing such moves.
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Daniel Vardy Studying HND IT, De Montfort University10 years ago
I spent 6 hours yesterday completing the single player campaign and another 3 today completing co-op. Enjoyed every minute. I will say that overall it is an excellent game, but in my eyes will never be as good as Portal.

I took part in the ARG and unlocked all 36 potatoes, then participated in the early release. However it became apparent to most people that it was not in reality an early release, but more of a way to coincide with retail release times. Most people I talk to who took part in that feel that it was a scam, as everything felt scripted to the point where we knew whatever we did made no difference to the release time.

The ARG however, allowed me to enjoy a vast amount of new games and I don't regret buying it.
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Craig Brooks QA Tester, 38 Studios10 years ago
I think both sides have valid arguments here.

Yes, there are some fans who, rightly so, are upset about the Day 1 DLC, the bugs in porting, and the overall length of game. And yes, they have every right to speak out.

Yes, there are a percentage of those complaining and giving the game bad scores who are purely trolling because, Surprise!'s the internet and that's what some folks do.

I think to dismiss either side here with a word and wave of the hand is something that ought to be avoided. Sure, there's certainly some chaff in the user ratings, but there's a lot of content there too by people who genuinely have some issues with the game and these are things that can and should be learned from.

I've not played the game yet, but will soon and I'm sure I'll both enjoy it, yet will find aspects that I thought were lacking or that bothered me. From an industry standpoint, though, I hope to take what I read in some of the reviews and learn from them.
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Ricky Hodgson Studying BA (Hons) Computer Games and Visual Effects, Anglia Ruskin University10 years ago
I don't get where the problems is with this port issue? (is it even really ported seeing as valve are historically a PC dev?)

The game is STUNNING on my PC! I wouldn't of even know nor do i care what it was developed on as long as the game doesn't suffer between platforms.
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Tyler Minarik Contributing Editor 10 years ago
Played for 6 hours last night through the co-op portion, and it is freaking awesome. By far the best co op experience I've ever had, you really need to work with your partner to get through it, and it's incredibly rewarding to figure out and complete.

The idea of dropping any game to a zero out of ten due to a minor typo like referencing consoles is absolutely ludicrous. The idea of dropping any game to a zero just because its a port is also just as ludicrous. If you want to deduct a point because it doesn't feel as smooth with a mouse and keyboard as you think it should, okay, but even then this isn't a twitch shooter game, so that really shouldn't effect your experience.

The day one DLC is purely cosmetic (as far as I know), and this is far from the first game to do this. Take a look at any number of fighting games with alternate costumes within the first week. Look at Resident Evil 5 with day one Versus DLC. Look at Bioshock 2 with DLC codes which unlocked content ON THE DISC. None of these got any where near this level of backlash. The lack of some stupid costume doesn't make the game any less fun, and a lot of it came as pre-order bonuses - so I really don't get where the beef is here.

I can't say how long the game actually is, I have yet to finish it - however, it was announced a while back that the PC side would have access to mod tools, for making custom levels that would be playable on PC, Mac, or PS3. I haven't installed my PC copy yet, but if this is indeed true then the vanilla campaigns are just the tip of the iceberg.

[link url=

So as far as I'm concerned, all of these arguments for giving Portal a low rating are pretty much null and void. Deducting a point, or even two, would be reasonable, but anyone giving this game a zero is immature, and I have no respect for them expressing their frustrations with this form of ratings sabotage.

Edit: ALSO, Gabe Newell announced quite clearly at E3 that the PS3 version of Portal 2 would be the BEST version. So, anyone expecting otherwise should have listened.

Edited 1 times. Last edit by Tyler Minarik on 20th April 2011 6:53pm

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Kieran MacGough Studying Computer Games Design & Programming, Staffordshire University10 years ago
0/10? Seriously? People need to wake up. The DLC is completely optional and doesn't effect the experience at all. As for the story, I found it amazing. Co-Op was equally amazing. I'd maybe mark it down on replay-ability, as most of the fun is figuring out the puzzles, and once you've done them once, it's hard to find it as fun the second time. I'd give it at least 8/10 for the good length of the Singleplayer, excellent co-op and great story. I'd give it 9/10 max, as it lacks replayability (until the SDK is released for it). But I don't understand why people give it 0/10. Plain childish.
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Ryan Schulze System Administrator, Gameforge10 years ago
I am still in the middle of single player and haven't finished yet, but up till now I can't find anything negative to say about the game. The storyline is a more dominant part of the game than Portal. And if I hadn't seen the "complaints" about it being a console port, I wouldn't have even known that. It is definitively not noticeable during gameplay.

Although there was a lot of controversy to be read about the ARG, I personally found it a very well done, and participated a bit in it last week. Promoting indie games is never a bad thing :-)
I was impressed that people that solved the complete ARG (collected all 36 potatoes) were rewarded with a free copy of Portal 2 (together with the "valve complete pack") yesterday after the official release in the US. Giving out free copies of your game on release day is ... unusual.

Day 1 DLC on a full priced game does bring a bitter taste though, especially when the prices are not really microtransactions. Thus leaving players with the feeling they paid full price for half the game, being teased into paying the more money just to recieve the "full game". This is the only aspect that in my eyes could have been handled a bit better.

Edited 1 times. Last edit by Ryan Schulze on 20th April 2011 7:02pm

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Kieren Bloomfield Software Engineer, EA Sports10 years ago
Sometimes I find the user reviews to be more useful than the critics. It's always an eye opener when the users and the critics don't agree. After all, I'm a user and disagree with the critics quite often. True you have to weed out trolling and actually read what people have to say. Anyone who says user opinions don't matter are just being arrogant and have forgotten the point of their business.

As far as Portal2 goes I might try it. But since I'm not going to bother with the co-op mode I have reservations about spending full whack on something that'll be over and collecting dust on the shelf after an afternoon worth of play. I appreciate that it might be a very good afternoon of play, but is it really worth it?
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James Prendergast Process Specialist 10 years ago
@ Tommy Thompson:

It's arguable that the reason they're co-opting the ratings site is because that is the only way they can get their message across.

You ever received a satisfactory reply from a company who already has your money and you have no recourse? Emails... internet petitions.... forum threads? They are all deleted and ignored - more so on the Steam forums where anything "unfavourable" is often wiped and the user banned.

I once sent an annoyed and dissatisfied email to Crytek after their release of Crysis: Warhead when i discovered the DRM in the game - despite them stating in interviews that it would not have any and that it was not revealed at any point of sale. Did i get a reply? You bet your frilly knickers i didn't. And you know why? Because my little email didn't hurt them because no one else saw it - i wouldn't be able to get any sort of media exposure and they already had my money. I couldn't hurt them in any way that they would understand. I can understand why going after a system that the publishers themselves have set up to *mean* something to the performance of their bonus structures (etc) is the only recourse for consumers who are largely ignored and detested by the content producers who see them only as moving wallets to be conned out of their money.

Now, i know this is seeming like i'm some sort of frothing madman but this is the direct impression i get from an industry that stops honest media representation of pre-screening events.... that ties in pre-order bonuses to dates before release and before those previews/reviews are allowed.... that won't even tell you exactly what your money is buying before purchase and doesn't allow refunds or returns. I love gaming... but i don't love what this industry has become. I don't like being treated like a criminal or getting an inferior product..... i don't like being lied to or being led on and if it takes some idiots rating a game down to 0 on a site that actually shouldn't even really matter if it weren't for the industry itself to actually get a reaction out of that same industry, then that's possibly the way it has to be...

Edited 1 times. Last edit by James Prendergast on 20th April 2011 8:38pm

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Leon Green Political lobbyist & Gamers Voice Director 10 years ago
Portal is crap, complaining about it is some kind of weird irony at this point..!
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Aleksi Ranta Category Management Project Manager 10 years ago
"There are only two races on this planet-the intelligent and the stupid."
-John Fowles
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Jamie Watson Studying Bachelor of Games & Interactive Entertainment, Queensland University of Technology10 years ago
this is a rather interesting standpoint as the user score is now 7.5 (what many would consider average) so thats pretty good i would say.

as for sales i think its just a case of wait and see...

i will be picking this up when i can it looks great!

we need more games with this style of puzzles.
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Shamsuddeen Salihu-Alkali 3D Artist / Environment Artist 10 years ago
Why can't people just enjoy a good game these days!... so what if they accidently left " turning off the 'console' when saving" messege, at least it was polished, complete and released on time.

Anyway will be getting my copy on ps3 after Ive handed in my uni work next week! :D
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Gregory Hommel writer 10 years ago
Allow me to disagree with this one fact. A game that has this much launch DLC is a matter of quality and value and it should be reflected in the review scores. Also, if any of my PS3 games asked me to quit the game by hitting ctrl alt del I would take that as an assurance that they were not concerned enough with the people playing the game on a console.
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Kane Roderique-Walker Journalist / Blogger / Student 10 years ago
Isn't supposed to be more than twice as long as the first one? How long is it? I'd have been happy with the same length to be honest.
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Graham Simpson Tea boy, Collins Stewart10 years ago
The day one optional DLC has worked very successfully for Tripwire Interactive's Killing Floor game. They have repeatedly released new content (news maps / enhanced gameplay) for free. What they have done at each free DLC is release an optional Character skin pack for a $ or 2. It's a skin as a player you don't see (except your hands) but then it's really optional so if you don't want it... don't buy it. No one complains because they know Tripwire just gave them a chunky free DLC update to the game. In fact many people just buy the skin anyway in a 'support for TWI' type thing, but even those skin sales do not cover the cost of the DLC.

It's not complicated. In the case of Portal 2 some people just want to complain. Equally I doubt we'll see any thank you threads when Valve do release some free DLC content for it. The power of the internet.
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Farhang Namdar Lead Game Designer Larian Studios 10 years ago
Valve doesn't even make games that are that great, why are they the saviors of the PC industry. Why not the guys that make Civ or Football manager and so on. And really people should be grateful we make games to start with!

I call this childish because its a sad display, the industry is changing and we need to release on multiple platforms. And honestly marketing-wise the indie pack was a nice marketing deal this is an industry and you need to make money by spending as little as possible and weaseling a more console oriented game on the PC is fine in my book. Besides its a F@CK*N^ SHOOTER that needs accurate aiming, how is that console oriented!!

And finally metacritic is an awe full measuring tool for game quality, just had to say that
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gi biz ;, 10 years ago
I wish I could try this... sadly enough, there seems to be a MacOS version but not a Linux one, so I will live without knowing if people on Metacritics were just trolling or not :p
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Tomas Lidström Lighting Artist, People Can Fly10 years ago
Haters gonna hate. Portal 2 was a day purchase for me and I had a great time. Puzzles are every bit as fun as in Portal 1 and the writing is excellent. Been a long time since a game made me laugh out lod every 5 minutes. :)
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Andrew Goodchild Studying development, Train2Game10 years ago
I'm a bit split. I don't think the reaction was appropriate here as I don't think the complaints were bad enough to deserve it. However, actually there are cases where it seems perfectly appropriate. The new Tiger woods game where course built into the career mode are sold as DLC?
Or the fact that it was announced early on that anyone preordering Bulletstorm would get Epic/special edition but on recieving my copy finding out that this had changed last minute to a Game exclusive only in the UK? And when I complained to EA, the support passed it on to marketting but did I get a reply? I think that the actual method is a valid protest, but the things that Valve done were at worst slightly misguided and were not the best target.
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Ben Wilson10 years ago
It can't be that bad, I think the PC crowd just needs to take a chill pill. Console ports aren't so bad they're unplayable, in fact sometimes they seem to work out better than the console titles themselves. I bought Dead Space 2 for the PC and it played much better than the console version, although you could clearly tell it was ported. To many raging autist nerds who don't like change on this man's internet.
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Kingman Cheng Illustrator and Animator 10 years ago
Incredibly immature response...
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Sean Greenan Explainer, Lithium10 years ago
The fact that some industry types here choose to ignore/mock consumer opinion in online media such as Metacritic is short-sighted, dumb, and quite frankly about 5 years behind the times (welcome to Collaborative Consumerism 2.0) - I thought folks on were supposed to be smart, creative vanguards of the digital age with an above average grasp of the wider context and impact of peer-to-peer network influence and the Interweb? ...
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Bradley Pearce10 years ago
The thing is about these metacritic reviews is that they are looking at it from their view, which of course is true to them. But the thing is, when they finish a game and they have the bugs all fixed by their deadline and everyone's very excited, the dev team is just sat twiddling their thumbs and it would be profitable to make dlc. Plus the dlc in total can all cost $80 in total to get them all but all they are is little costumes and skins to show off with. Nothing essential or absolutely critical for gameplay enjoyment.

The pc gamers as well seem to be very headstrong about the console message when they save the game. It just seems nitpicky and spiteful, i don't understand how that is a devastating and game ruining experience.

Don't understand how it's a bad game because of two nitpicks which are perfectly understandable.

On the jokey side, they probably completed the game in '4 hours' because they were having so much fun and time flies when you're having fun right? :P
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Kevin Robertson Account Executive - Eastern North America, Unity Technologies10 years ago
I think there's an underlying, but prevalent, feeling of rebellion against Valve in this case. For me, personally, I will play the game and probably love it. But after hearing how much Valve is pushing DLC and other indie games through their system, it's a bit of a turn off - especially when this game is a $50 title. So I can understand why some people may not give this game a great score on principle.

That being said...I loved the first game, and will love this version as well...but I'll wait for the price to drop.
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Jeff Kring Design / Textures 10 years ago
Indeed.. Valve doesn't give a crap. They are making tons of money so fans should just save their breath(or wrist strength). Console porting is lame, especially for a company that was a pioneering force in the PC games industry.. Either way I am sure the game is a lot of fun and people use the internet to complain.
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Ben Meadows Senior QA Engineer, Thomson Reuters10 years ago
I played through the entire single player campaign and most of the multi-player content. Sure, the game has some bugs but what title doesn't? The bugs don't take away from the experience and the game is still great.

Most of the complaints seem to focus on the DLC content. People are upset that valve: "put out a DLC for the game on launch day...why didn't they just include this content in the game for free?". There are two things funny about this line of thinking. One, the content is purely cosmetic and does not add any new gameplay content or levels to the game; therefore it does not extend the gameplay whatsoever. Two, most (if not all...not sure because I haven't finished the multi-player content yet) of the DLC content can be acquired for free simply by playing through the multi-player campaign.

All of this "nerd rage" appears to stem from a misunderstanding about the DLC. Valve should speak up about this and try to explain it VERY SLOWELY to their angry fans before they lose control of the story.
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James Prendergast Process Specialist 10 years ago

Thanks for your PM, of course i can't respond due to settings/segregation and thanks for inviting me to the forum to discuss this. I doubt i'll be signing up though, so nevermind... Customer feedback shouldn't have to be so difficult.
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Stuart Green Studying BTEC Games Development, Derby College10 years ago
I think the bad reviews are down to what I call PC snobbery and the day 1 DLC.

I haven't played the game and I'm neither a fan of the first one either but I would be pretty cheesed off if I purchased a game only be sold extra content for it on the same day. It would feel like I've purchased a stripped down version of the game and that the developers have held the content back for the purpose of making more $$ out of me.

I've noticed that some PC owners have a hatred of consoles and are quite snobby, they think the PC is superior in terms of graphical power. So when they see a game which is a console port, they get angry and react because they feel like the PC version could have been visually more appealing.

So they might feel like they have been short changed on two fronts.

Of course, this is just my 2 pence worth which doesn't count for much seeing as I'm neither a player of Portal or a PC gamer.
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Daniel Vardy Studying HND IT, De Montfort University10 years ago
@ Stuart Green

I believe I fall into that category of PC snobbery, as when it comes down to it the PC will always be at the forefront of innovation. This is mainly due to its flexibility. When it comes to console ports, it does come down to PC owners thinking that more could have been done, but it was all held back due to the aging closed systems we call consoles.
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