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Portal Companion Collection Switch Review – Still Alive!

Portal Companion Collection Switch Review – Still Alive!

portal: companion collection

Portal Companion Collection is a combo set that contains Portal and Portal 2, two wonderful first-person puzzle games with excellent stories, and they are now available on the Nintendo Switch! This has to be the 5th different platform that I own the original Portal on now, and you know what? I don’t care. It is just as good now as it was the first time I played it, and I think this Switch playthrough is my 20th time through the game. That means I know a thing or two about this title and its puzzles.

So how does this package deal fair on the hybrid console? Does the Portal Companion Collection deserve cake? Or are these two games destined to find themselves stuck in gaming limbo, scratching conspiracies on their walls? Let’s find out!

portal companion collection

Portal

We will start things off with Portal. For those unfamiliar, Portal is a first-person puzzler where you eventually obtain access to a portal gun that grants you the ability to create a blue and orange portal that links one to the other. GLaDOS, the main antagonist, is an astonishing AI character that carries the entire story on her back with her witty quips and at-times terrifying commentary that is often played off as no big deal.

This is one of those games that will forever stand the test of time. Sure, some of its visuals have not aged perfectly well, but it still looks incredible and plays excellently. Portal is truly one of the most profound first-person puzzlers out there, and for a time, it set the bar for what a game can do for pop culture, as GLaDOS and the song Still Alive were hot topics in the gaming community back when the title initially launched.

The transition to the Nintendo Switch is fantastic, and the game looks and feels great both in docked mode and handheld. It is not the longest game, as it can be cleared easily in under 3 hours, and for those familiar with the game and want to play it again on the Switch, it can even be finished in about 1.5 hours if you remember all of the puzzles well. Despite, this is still an incredible experience and one that every gamer should play!

portal companion collection

Portal 2

Portal 2 mixes things up by introducing co-op to the formula, but that does not mean this is solely a cooperative experience. Quite the contrary, Portal 2 provides both a stellar single player campaign as well as a phenomenal 2-player cooperative mode. This makes the total package immediately a huge upgrade from the original Portal, as this game boasts an 8-hour single player and an 8-hour multiplayer experience, giving you at least 16 hours of top-tier portal puzzles and action!

In the single player this time around, we are introduced to Wheatley, an amusing AI voiced by none other than Stephen Merchant, and he is an unbelievably funny character that carries Portal 2 in a similar way to how GLaDOS carries the story of the first Portal (Although Portal 2 is carried by not one, not two, but three major characters!). One thing that the Portal series does a wonderful job of is supply fantastic comedy in the midst of its puzzling gameplay and relatively freaky storytelling. The awkward interactions with Wheatley this time around cannot be praised enough, as this goofy little robot is so much more than meets the eyes.

Similar to Portal, Portal 2‘s transition to the Switch has been done masterfully. This time around, the world is much more colorful and decorated with some lushness thanks to the abandonment of the facility and how dilapidated things are and overgrown the plants have gotten. Portal 2 is exactly the sequel that you want after playing the original, and the fact that you get to have two very different gameplays depending on whether you play alone or with a friend is the icing on the cake (Even though it is a lie). An amazing sequel in just about every way, especially all of the very noticeable quality-of-life improvements, and truly one of the best sequels in gaming history.

portal companion collection

Portal Companion Collection

Portal Companion Collection is a fantastic package that offers tons of gameplay across two separate titles. The sequel is where most of the meat is, as the original is significantly shorter and only offers the single player campaign, but the original is where it all started and is truly brilliant from start to finish. On top of the games themselves, both titles contain lots of extras, including advanced puzzles in the original game, commentary, entertaining videos, and achievements. This definitely adds to the overall package, as it simply gives more reason to visit both games.

Both titles look and sound absolutely amazing, too. It is wild that despite their ages, Portal and Portal 2 are gorgeous titles. There is simply so much to appreciate, but the area that deserves the most praise is the sound department and the voice acting. Each puzzle area, especially in Portal 2, is chock full of authentic sounds that really immerse you into the experience. On top of that, as I pointed out earlier, the voice acting for GLaDOS and Wheatley, particularly, are phenomenal. I could listen to both characters ramble nonstop for days, and revisiting both adventures just to reconnect with these two was a delight.

See Also

One unfortunate side of the Portal Companion Collection is that this is not one title. Once you purchase it from the eShop, it is downloaded as two separate apps: Portal and Portal 2. Personally, I would have preferred both titles in one app to lessen the clutter of my Switch library, and honestly, the Companion Collection header icon is adorable and I would have loved to have seen that on my homescreen. The only other issue, and it is a bigger one, is the pricing. Don’t get me wrong, $19.99 USD for this collection is a steal, but Valve regularly discounts these two games on Steam. Both games have at one point been discounted to $0.99 on Steam, which means many owners of these titles have gotten them for cheaper than a bottle of Coca-Cola, which makes that $19.99 pricetag difficult to bite by comparison.

portal companion collection

When all is said and done, Portal Companion Collection is a solid package. Both titles included have aged wonderfully, and the stories are just as engaging as they were when they initially released. GLaDOS’s script is truly one of the best written characters in gaming history, and it is hard not to love her despite her unquenched thirst to kill you.

It would have been nice for the package to be one app instead of splitting the games up, but that is purely aesthetic and does not take away anything from either game. The price may be a bit high considering the ages of the titles, but if you want to play Portal and Portal 2 on the go and do not own a Steam Deck, this is obviously the best possible option to do so.

Portal Companion Collection is a perfect solution for anyone who has never experienced this brilliant series before, and we can thank our lucky stars that this port to the Switch is damn-near perfect. If you have played the games before or currently own them on another platform, this may be a pass, but if you have been curious about the buzz behind these two games, there is no better time than now to dive in, especially since there is cake at the end.


Portal Companion Collection Review provided by Nintendo Link
Publisher: Valve Corporation
Release Date: June 28th, 2022
Price: $19.99, £14.39, €18,99
Game Size: Portal 2.6GB, Portal 2 7.3GB

portal companion collection
0
Masterpiece
90100
Pros

Two beyond fantastic titles

Unbelievable sound and voice acting, especially for GLaDOS and Wheatley

Some of the best 3D platforming and puzzles in gaming

Tons of gameplay and loads of extra content to enjoy

Cons

Due to frequent Steam sales, pricing may be seen as high

Downloads as two separate apps instead of one collection app

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