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Play OverviewPlay Overview

Portal (2007) is a puzzle game where you manipulate the world around you to move through increasingly complex chambers. By creating two connected portals- if you walk into one, you walk out the other- you must move yourself around the rooms to escape. It stands out for how this mind-bending system allows you to travel around in unexpected ways and find ingenious solutions.

You are in a science laboratory where you seem to be watched and tested by the artificial intelligence GLaDOS. You have a gun that can create a pair of magic portals on any surface: one orange, the other blue. If you walk through the blue portal, you emerge from the orange one and vice versa. Through a series of increasingly ingenious (and malicious) test chambers, you must use your gun to escape. As you progress, the stages become ever more challenging to solve, requiring lateral thinking and experimentation to find a way out.

It’s a mind-bending challenge, but the real interest is the darkening tone of GLaDOS, who seems bent on foiling your progress, and the signs of previous test subjects spotted behind the scenes. As GLaDOS’s dysfunction turns to straight-up sociopathy, you must take on challenges with her tormenting discouragement ringing in your ears. The isolation is heightened by the introduction of a lifeless companion cube, which mocks your friendless predicament.

The result is a game that offers a mind-bending challenge paired with an enticing story only hinted at; behind the puzzles is the bigger mystery of where you are, and what these tests are for.

Our examiner, Andy Robertson, first checked Portal 4 years ago. It was re-examined by Jo Robertson and updated 3 weeks ago.
Kids not old enough for this yet? There are lots of games similar to Portal. Here are some similar younger-rated games:

Play StylePlay Style

This is an Adventure and Puzzle game with Action, Narrative, Platform, Sequencing, Simulation and Traversal elements. This is a single-player game.

DurationDuration

Play Time: This game will take between 4 hours and 9 hours to complete.

BenefitsBenefits

This game is good if you want to:

 
This game has helped players develop their Knowledge as part of the following pathways:

This game has been the inspiration for the following activities:
Dr Who
FILMS AND SERIES

Age RatingsAge Ratings

Content Rating

Rated PEGI 12 for Moderate Violence, Mild Swearing.

Rated for younger players in the US. Rated ESRB EVERYONE 10+ for Fantasy Violence, Mild Language. From a first-person perspective, players solve numerous physical puzzles as they navigate through post-apocalyptic environments. Players use a "portal gun" to open transportation gateways. Throughout the game, players must avoid hazards such as stationary gun turrets, toxic substances, poisonous gas, and giant pistons; some sequences are accompanied by realistic gunfire. Robot droids can also be destroyed; for example, in one boss battle, players must defeat a robot by throwing small bombs. The words "damn" and "hell" can be heard in the dialogue.
Portal Still Alive is rated PEGI 12 with language and violence. ESRB rated it TEEN with blood and mild violence. Players must avoid various hazards including gun turrets, which fire upon the player when encountered. When the player is shot, blood splatter can result on back walls of hallways and rooms.

Skill Level

8+ year-olds usually have the required skill to enjoy this game. Still, it's important for parents and guardians to consider the maturity required to process the game content. One family told us, "My boys were 7- and 9-years-old when they enjoyed Portal 2 together. They worked to complete each level and spent some time joking about (lots of trust fall type scenarios in Portal 2). Here's a video of Dylan when he was 6 and playing Portal 1. The things they work out on their own is amazing."

Our Game Pathways reveal how 11-year-olds play this game:

CostsCosts

Portal usually costs £8.50.
 

Portal

Steam Store PC £8.50
Steam Store Mac £8.50
Switch Store Switch -
There are no additional in-game purchases, loot boxes, adverts or subscription costs.
 
Portal: Companion Collection brings both Portal and Portal 2 to the Switch. This includes local and online multiplayer for Portal 2.

The Android version of the game can only be played on NVIDIA SHIELD portable, SHIELD tablet, and SHIELD Android TV devices and requires a controller. 
 

DetailsGame Details

Release Date: 10/10/2007, updated in 2022

Out Now: Android, Mac, PC, Switch and Xbox 360

Skill Rating: 8+ year-olds

Players: 1

Genres: Adventure, Puzzle (Action, Narrative, Platform, Sequencing, Simulation and Traversal)

Accessibility: 25 features

Components: 3D First-Person

Developer: Valve Software (@ValveSoftware)


Taming Gaming Book Written by parents for parents, the database complements the in-depth discussion about video game addiction, violence, spending and online safety in the Taming Gaming book. We are an editorially independent, free resource without adverts that is supported by partnerships.

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