comScore Portal 2 Super 8 | The Mary Sue
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Portal 2 Is Out Today! With a Brand New Trailer for Super 8 (Spoiler Free)

And All Was Right With the World

And when we say brand new, we mean it. The “trailer” for Super 8 is nestled within the Portal 2 extras menu, below all the promotional trailers for the game. But when you select it, you don’t get a video: you get a little interactive sequence to pilot yourself through, constructed with Valve’s Source engine.

But that’s enough about Super 8! Portal 2 is out today! Not only was Portal a flat out incredible game, shocking pretty much everybody with it’s dry, jet-black sense of humor and clever puzzle mechanics (not to mention it’s music). But it has a special place in our hearts for it two, and only, characters, both female.

Certainly the female-voiced malevolent computer intelligence isn’t a new trope, but GLaDOS was both a formidable and frightening enemy and a character that you as the player loved,¬†sympathized¬†with and wanted to see and hear more of. And then there was the silent Chell (who inspired one of our logo Sues), visible only a the very beginning of the game and through the use of portals. When we talk about more representation for women in videogames, Chell is what we are talking about. There was no overwhelming reason for the protagonist of Portal to be female. There were no protests, no community outcry, no in-world reason why this particular test subject would be a woman. Valve could have gotten away clean with a male protagonist, and no one would have batted an eye. It’s a videogame! The audience is primarily male, Valve should have played to the majority (and all those other arguments that get trotted for these kinds of decisions)!

But instead Chell was a woman. And what an atypical woman for a videogame! Olive skinned, fully clad, of serious expression and a disheveled look exactly in line with what a person might look like after emerging from an enforced hibernation of unknown duration. She wasn’t eye candy. She was a character.

Now, after a long wait, a brief delay, and a fascinating ARG, Portal 2 is here. We say this calls for cake.

(Does the Companion Cube count as a character? Discus.)

(video via Kotaku.)

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