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Showing posts from April, 2011

Fighting Mongooses on Level Design

CB of the Fighting Mongooses, continuing to relentlessly spam the blog with inanity. Today's topic: architecture! That's vague, though, so let's narrow it down just a hair, and correlate the design of the Testing Center with the mindset of its deliciously diabolical propagator, GLaDos. Note that this is in reference exclusively to Portal the First.
Before GLaDos' intentions have been made explicitly clear - while the player continues to identify her as a benign, if sardonic and witty testing aid - the facilities remain monochromatic and sterile. The Weighted Storage Cubes are completely unremarkable, the color scheme (excluding the Portal Gun) runs the gamut from red to black to white, and the only glimpses of areas outside the testing chambers are mundane offices perched about in the corners of several rooms.
Test Chamber 16, the chamber which introduces the turrets and provides perhaps the most definitive evidence of GLaDos' malevolence/insanity up to that point, n…

Fighting Mongooses Part Two

I Played through portal again to get myself in the mindset. I wanted to have a mind full of Weighted storage cubes before I started looking at the theory of study. One thing I noticed from a theatrical point of view, There is very little music. There is the occasional radio in a Rat Man nest or with a few cubes. Other than that, I can think of only really think of a few moments with music. The moment when you finally get the full Portal gun, where you can fire two portals. The music is bright and and technological. You were just given the key to a new world, and the quick musical moment adds to that feeling.
Another is when GLaDos tries to incinerate you. The music is sharp and dreadful, kind of like a techno Snidely Whiplash moment. The final moment I really noticed the music was during the climatic battle after you burn away her Moralty core. It is your standard climactic moment music.
Now this serves two purposes. The first is the lack of music. This gives the environments already ste…

Narrative Speculation of Portal

The "cake is a lie" is the key to understanding Portal's narrative meaning. Possibly referencing the nature of our world, where we are told from a young age that the world is our oyster and there is many splendors to be achieved. But in truth, the prize, goal and cake aren't actually achievable things, just the journey to that lie. However, is Portal referencing the journey to the lie is the prize. In essence, is Portal trying to bring to mind the delusional world we live in, or bringing to our attention that the "cake" is a journey? (One take)
Another take on Portal's narrative: a warning of technological control. All things are made by people, so why does Glados control? A likely conclusion might be he was made by the government to control, but he became too unstable and developed a mind of his own. His instability being a warning of too much technological dependence can turn on us. (Another Take)
By the way, me and kconley are taking a narrative approa…

Just learned a new word!


Not sure what it is (though I can guess) but it sounds like something you should all look up. I saw it mentioned in a comment about studies of how amnesia functions in video games.

There is SUCH interesting work going on in this field...

Fighting Mongooses Are Go

Chris Bennett of the Fighting Mongooses, reporting in. Collectively, our team has devoured the original Portal and supped on the screenshots of the sequel. Needless to say, we're hungry for more.
We've gathered up a few sources already - we're going for a nice, even mix of incisive interviews offered up by those darling little developers, and pretentious undergraduate theses we found in the interweb's seedy underbelly.
We hope to offer up morsels both delicious and moist in the coming post, and we're going to thoroughly enjoy gaming for the greater good. Also, typing in the second person. Friggin' righteous.


Hello, all. We will have a very brief class meeting this coming Tuesday, April 26th, at 10:00am in the Drover Den. I'll hand out some info and we can check out the new console, download Portal, etc. See you there!