Valve ARG Gives Fans Power to Release Portal 2 Early

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If I bought the potato sack, it would be more than if I was going to buy each of the games I don't own individually, plus out of those, AAAaaaAAaaa is the only one I might consider getting. I planned on getting the PS3 version, anyway. The whole ARG thing was an amazing idea, though. Hopefully the levels (especially The Ball one) will stick around after this. Too much work/homework to play this weekend.

I'm super impressed that they are using their game to promote indie games. I mean, everything is on Steam so Valve still wins. But they could have tried to market their own games using the arg, or some other big company's.

Just to repeat what others are saying:
1) You dont need the potato pack to help. Just one of the games on the list.
2) The potato pack is great and has a bunch of top tier indie games.
3) You can get a discount on portal if you buy the portal 2 + potato pack.

(Honestly, this might all be just a big party that Valve is throwing because they are actually ready to release early for once.)

I wish I could buy the rest of the pack :/ oh well, will work with what I've got.

Nevermind that it has already been leaked on pirate/torrent sites... XD
Eh, good for Valve that they do not get pissed off and instead just find a way for people to buy it early instead of having to pirate it.

But they'll only release it on Steam early. I want the PS3 version. That way I can get the steam vversion for free, and I only have to wait a few more days.

gibboss28:

Biscuit:
The Steam forums are bursting with rage, it's too funny.
People are angry that they didn't get handed the game early for nothing, seemingly forgetting that it's not supposed to be out until Tuesday.

Pretty much, I'd be all right if there was a genuine reason to be angry, but there's not. They're using a collection of products all of which have been promoted for the last couple of weeks to promote another product.

..What in fuck is wrong with that?

It just proves that Valve fanboys will do anything to play their "new" games if given the chance?

From the way the aperture science countdown website is set up, it looks like the "early release" is probably based on getting the new steam achievements for the potato sack games, not based on sales. Four days before the release, maybe three percent of the necessary achievements have been logged. So an early release is not going to happen, and probably never could have.

I've been working on the new achievements for Defense Grid, and when you finish it it gives you four login names and passwords and adds a console to the game menu. The console lets you log in to an old-school DOS interface where you can play a text-based mini-game and use your hacking skills to find out the passwords for several protected files and other logins. This is kind of fascinating, but unfortunately not my style of "gameplay", and I only managed to find one extra password. Still, extra content is extra content. I am impressed by how much work they put in on this, and looking forward to additional DLC that will be released later in the week.

As far as I can tell we unlock portal 2 early by getting achievements in the potato sack games.

Umm... what exactly do we have to do?

Just play the games? Complete certain objectives? What?

You just need to play the games to raise the counter, if you check the numbers you will see they match the number of people playing in the Steam statistics. But getting the potato achievements speeds things up.

It's the number of CPU's playing x the number of potato challenges.(Did this sentence sound retarded or what?) So just go play the games.

thehermit2:

I've been working on the new achievements for Defense Grid, and when you finish it it gives you four login names and passwords and adds a console to the game menu. The console lets you log in to an old-school DOS interface where you can play a text-based mini-game and use your hacking skills to find out the passwords for several protected files and other logins. This is kind of fascinating, but unfortunately not my style of "gameplay", and I only managed to find one extra password. Still, extra content is extra content. I am impressed by how much work they put in on this, and looking forward to additional DLC that will be released later in the week.

There's also an extra campaign for Defense Grid if you haven't noticed.

I think the funniest thing about all this is all the people running around the internet telling everyone how it works because they are so smart and figured it all out. And yet, everyone has a different story. "Potatoes don't matter, just play!" "Potatoes are super important, go get lots of them!" "Just leave the game idling in the background, you don't have to play." "Idling doesn't count, you have to be actively playing for it to mean anything."

The only thing we really know for sure is that nobody knows anything specific about how it works. Yet everyone is acting like they know it all. Very amusing.

I'm just going to go do what I want to do today, and if the game doesn't come out until Tuesday, oh well. That's when it was coming out anyway.

Hashime:

henritje:
I got a question.
Does this also work if you buy the game loose from the potato sack?
I would like to play the Portal level from ball but don,t want to buy the sack.

The sack is totally worth the money. Trust me.

I personally had like 50-75% of the games already, so its not worth the money for everyone.

This ARG was pretty brilliant. It was thoroughly enjoyable to follow, and it was equally fun to try to get as many potatoes as possible (though I didn't get the ones that would've required me to power through a game to get to a certain point).

I'm running RUSH in the background right now to help the cause! :P

EDIT: Apparently there's some confusion about how the process is working. The way I understand it, if your profile is listed as "In-Game", your CPU is "recruited" to help with whatever game your profile is listed as playing. This also means that you can't help with 2 games at once. This is logical because this is the primary way Steam tracks your playtime.

Why do I think this? Why is it not solely based on potatoes/achievements? Because just look at the title of the page: [email protected] It's a parody of [email protected], a Stanford-based program that just has you run their protein simulator (either in the background or in the forefront) as it performs calculations. It seems to follow that, due to the name, this Portal 2 countdown works the same way.

Zenode:
But what i want to know is, it says "current" CPU's does this mean we have to play them at the same time or just over a period of time?

I think it stands for how many people are playing the games,therefore how much power GLaDOS is getting at once

I am so confused about the rage.

"i was expecting something more" i hear people say....

more then what?

THis contest is self correcting. If you WANT PORTAL 2 BADLY, here is a way to play a portal related game to get it earlier. If you HATE PORTAL 2.....then why the hell are you playing? I actually heard people say they were hoping for information ON A DIFFERENT GAME THEY LIKE.

what the hell? lol

I can imagine their disappointment when they play the game, too. "I just beat Portal, and it gave me extra levels.....but extra levels FOR PORTAL? I FUCKING HATE PORTAL!" bizarre, lol...

The reason for them doing this, im guessing, is because you dont release the digital version BEFORE the disk version normally because....well, you just dont. Thats just awkward. But if its released early because of some sort of CONTEST, well, then thats a fine enough excuse. Fine enough one indeed.

problem solved

As a console gamer who was expecting a Half Life 3 trailer...yeah, seriously disappointed.

SomeBritishDude:
As a console gamer who was expecting a Half Life 3 trailer...yeah, seriously disappointed.

The hell...?

Why would you expect that?

Zhukov:

SomeBritishDude:
As a console gamer who was expecting a Half Life 3 trailer...yeah, seriously disappointed.

The hell...?

Why would you expect that?

In the later parts of the ARG there were references to 1912, which was the year the Titanic sank when it hit an ice berg, which to me screamed Boriallis. Then there was one recent message that ended in "...this is where I get off" which most Half Life fans know as a G-man line. Then there was also several messages that talked of a "prelude". What would be a prelude to Portal 2 that isn't Portal, considering the amount of time lore wise between the two games?

It was a long shot but still, it made sense to me. Valve are likely to announce Half Life 3 within the next 6 months anyway.

Can anyone tell me what the Amnesia portal levels are or whatever it is they did to Amnesia?

I checked the stats, the peak for "The Wonderful End of the World" on the countdown page is higher than the peak amount of people who have played. It might be linked to players CPU or the amount of time they spent playing.

Actually, I found that one game has less CPUs than players playing, so it must be on time.

this is excellent, time to begin an audiosurf marathon. :D

Timbydude:

EDIT: Apparently there's some confusion about how the process is working. The way I understand it, if your profile is listed as "In-Game", your CPU is "recruited" to help with whatever game your profile is listed as playing. This also means that you can't help with 2 games at once. This is logical because this is the primary way Steam tracks your playtime.

Actually, it still counts hours on other games launched too. I opened up both Audiosurf and Super Meat Boy, left it for 2 hours, and then shut them both, and 2hours were added to both game playtimes.

Still, I'm not sure whether opening 2 games at once actually helps at all, but considering it doesn't harm me anything to leave both games open, why not. Hell, I'm doing this for the sake of it anyway. I'm getting the PS3 version, and the release date for that here is the 21st, so I'll get it late regardless.

This was nice, but still not nearly as good as the Halo ARGs were.

Akihiko:

Actually, it still counts hours on other games launched too. I opened up both Audiosurf and Super Meat Boy, left it for 2 hours, and then shut them both, and 2hours were added to both game playtimes.

Hmm, I didn't know that. I'll definitely try opening all the ones I own.

P.S. If your username is a reference to the Persona 3 character, then my respect for you just doubled. :P

I'd like to participate, but I really just don't want to end up paying another $35 for Portal 2, which is what I would be doing in essence, as I'm not particularly interested in any of those games. But, for those folks who are, or people who do just want to spend the money, that's a great idea.

I guess people are angry that Valve isn't releasing the game as early as they could, and instead are, in their eyes, holding it hostage. But that's really not quite true, as Valve gets to decide when they want to release the game, and if people are going to play along with this 'early release' concept, more power to them.

Valve release a game early? Repent the end is nigh.

I'm loving Valve's marketing of Portal 2 proof that advertising companies are usless, promoting your product while boosting sales for indie developers is amazing. If only I had more money to buy some more of the potato sack games :(. Anyway I'll do my bit with a marathon Audiosurf session :)

Tom Goldman:

While this appears to be part money grab, I think it's one that rewards fans handsomely. Anyone into the Portal mythos should enjoy the content added to the Potato Sack, which in certain cases such as Amnesia: The Dark Descent's is quite significant. Even if the game isn't released early, the Portal 2 ARG has been a fun ride, and an amazingly clever way to market a game.

Source: [email protected]

Permalink

in the case of ammnesia unless you knew about it you would never make the conection between justine and portal

GeorgW:
But they'll only release it on Steam early. I want the PS3 version.

I'm waiting for PS3 version too. But I don't mind waiting few more days. I do have AudioSurf, but I'm not very good at it & I gotten bored with it in the end. I still play it time to time, but... I don't want to burn my energy for this.

Well, I'd better go buy those games...

...before those selfish ARG players finish the thing and the discounts go away. I swear, the nerve of some people.

henritje:
I got a question.
Does this also work if you buy the game loose from the potato sack?
I would like to play the Portal level from ball but don,t want to buy the sack.

Here's how it works.

Steam keeps track of hours played and when your playing each game. Logging in time on each game, accellerates the release of the digital release of Portal 2. You don't need to buy the sack, you don't need to play every game, just have one and play it.

I think this is brilliant.
Valve is the only company that could turn marketing and advertising into a game- with incentives. I wish more companies would do stuff like this. It sure as hell would make things a lot more fun, thats for sure.

Hell, I'm getting Portal 2 for the PS3, but I'm more than happy to jump in and help out the people on Steam get it early. Just sounds like a barrel of fun to me.

We have fun, Valve gets money, we get something in return for our effort.
Its a win-win-win!!

henritje:
I got a question.
Does this also work if you buy the game loose from the potato sack?
I would like to play the Portal level from ball but don,t want to buy the sack.

Yes.

Any Audiosurf owner right now would notice the blue-and-orange icon it has just acquired :D

The thing i wonder about is, was the entire 3 week ARG just big setup to what's going on now. I mean 3 weeks of riddles, clues, reallife trips to reallife destinations, finding hidden texts, finding conceptart and following characters.

Leading up to:

A dynamic release date with probably 1 to 2 days profit on the normal release date.

I mean srsly, they had enough hype to announce Portal 3, Halfife2:Episode 3, and 5 new Half-Life installments.
I hope they'll add more clues and prove this is just a small diversion.
Also, a reason most ARG players are "upset" is because they have been playing those 13 games for 3 weeks straight... hunting clues, getting potatos and discovering the "unknown" indie games.

And the conclusion is... they have to do it some more!

valve = trolls

Braedan:
Of course people will be angry with this tactic. I'm assuming most will either think "cool" or be neutral, but we gamers seem to have some entitlement issues. Of course Valve wants you to buy their products, it's business. I think this is a very cleaver way of doing it that hurts no-one.

A lot of people are way too mad about it though. "I have to pay $40 to get the game I already paid for early!!"

Some people forget that the Potato Pack actually has 13 games in it. You know, games? Those things you play? Not just that, but 13 incredible games. I mean, if you don't have Super Meat Boy already, I'd argue that it's worth the $40 asking price alone!! You buy games to get more games. How is that a bad deal?? And independent games, no less - all from game studios that definitely deserve the recognition and support. But hey, I guess that makes Valve assholes!

Some people are just self-entitled twats, I guess.

rvdm88:
Also, a reason most ARG players are "upset" is because they have been playing those 13 games for 3 weeks straight... hunting clues, getting potatos and discovering the "unknown" indie games.

And the conclusion is... they have to do it some more!

They don't have to do anything. I think this is more for the "everyone else" crowd, with those who have been working on the ARG's main focus getting more people to play those games. And don't worry, I'm pretty certain there's going to be a better conclusion to the ARG than this. Developers are still dropping hints.

Points for creating a brilliant and fun marketing campaign Valve, now can you please tell me how to unlock the challenges for AaaasaaAAsh! A Reckless Disregard for Gravity?

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