PORTAL 2: A SCHOOL PROJECT REWORK

One of the first level I did has a student was for Portal 2. Back then, I taught it was fine. I revisited my old map and did a makeover keeping the same intentions and most of the puzzles.

BREAKDOWN AND ANALYSIS

On the Old Version, the puzzles were interesting, but it was poorly executed. So I wanted to keep most of it, but make it better.

My intention on the rework version was to create 2 puzzles of similar difficulties. One would be based on lasers and the other on physics.

The Player Experience:

 

The experience I wanted to create was to make the player think:

    That is easy --> That is impossible? --> I am so smart!

All I needed for that was a clear objective with a twist.

LAYOUT

OLD: The first issue the level had was its size. It was very wide and was 2 story tall. The navigation was unpleasant, especially when the player is trying to figure out the puzzle.

Layout_old.png

REWORK: The second story was removed completely. Something I have learned while supervising playtests, players will usually go down only on last resorts and rarely look up. 

layout_new.png

LEVEL INTRODUCTION

OLD: The introduction was a mess, you had so much going on from the first frame of the level.

Intro_Comparison_OLD.png

REWORK: The player knows right from the start that it will need 2 spheres to complete the level.

Intro_Comparison_Rework.png

Puzzle 1: Charging my laser

The first puzzle was a laser puzzle, it was pleasing but the design was flawed. I had to work on the rhythmbalanceframing, guidance and navigation.

OLD: The major flaw on this section was that the objective was on the second floor without any possible way to see it.

puzzle1_Old.png

REWORK: The puzzle stayed the same for most parts but the design pillars were polished.

Puzzle1_Rework.png

Puzzle 2: Wolf, Goat and Cabbage

The second puzzle is a physics puzzle using the famous fling mechanic, this one was completely reworked. 

 

Once again the focus on rhythmbalanceframing, guidance and navigation.

OLD: The room was enormous only to fit a tricky fling jump. There was a lot of backtracking and it was confusing since there was no clear objective.

puzzle2_Old.png

REWORK: For the reworked puzzle you have to launch yourself to the other side and then make the cube travel, similar to the famous riddle: Wolf, Goat and Cabbage.

puzzle2_rework.png

WALKTHROUGH

OLD VERSION

REWORK VERSION

CONCLUSION

I enjoyed coming back to this old project and give it a makeover.

It was a fun experiment which I might do again. I will certainly take some other levels I did or even Bad reviewed levels on the Steam Workshop using the same breakdowns and analysis.