Wednesday, April 20, 2011

The countdown to the countdown to the countdown

On Monday, Gaben worshipers everywhere noticed that the number of potatoes were rapidly dropping. "It's starting!" they declared. "We've overclocked GLaDOS!"

Then, it was thought to do calculations. At the rate we were loosing potatoes, it counter wouldn't reach zero until midnight PST.

And then we noticed something strange.... the number of test subjects listed at Glados@home had gone from zero... to nine!

Portal's facebook page now held this photo:

"The first of the nine begins to play"




THE INFECTED! The infected were playing and it was in the middle of the day on MONDAY! (Why can't I be infected??? I thought. Of course, I didn't put in enough effort to be granted that.) I know this makes no sense to you. ... It's from the Valve Alternate Reality Game.


As the day turned into night and the number of Steam players in the Nelipot and Portal 2 and Potato Fools Day chat rooms skyrocketed, the number of Test Subjects began to rise again.

32...54...63

Those lifeless bastards who had achieved a golden potato ... yes! They were playing Portal 2! (They also got the entire Valve library as a reward, and any additional copies from their library became giftable**)

The chatroom (voice and text) filled with trolls* and spoilers.


I began documenting the countdown:



I was among the first of my friends to have finished decrypting and installing. Immediately upon opening Portal 2 I was flooded with messages "You lucky whore!" and "NOOOO! Mine's still at 12%!" (Most people got stuck around 12% and 32% for a while.)

I responded to a few, but I had to leave them behind. This... this was my time.




I had work the next day, and I couldn't play for long. But the little I played that night was enough to sustain me through the day, so that I could get home and start again.


Immediately upon logging in I was blasted with requests to play co-op. All of those people I'd met while waiting for Portal 2... "This is like having real friends!" I said to Dynamite, half-joking.


I played through Co-Op with a friend and it was so much fun. I realized how much this game makes you think outside the box, as do most puzzle games, right down to the frantic thoughts of "how can I possibly jump over that far??" and my partner scolding me "you're not thinking with portals!"

Despite all of Glados' efforts to drive us apart, Atlas and I, we saved science (Glados told us so!)


Save science with me?


*That is a joke, Dubs is a friend. Also, a monstrous troll who has gotten me more than once. "HOW DO YOU NOT KNOW WHAT A CARET IS???"
**If anyone has a Golden Potato and wants to give away L4D, I'd be cool with that.

1 comment:

fraukuech said...

please explain the potatoes. and the wiki pages mentions nothing of any infection. i am SO confused.