Shiny Vortigaunts! (and portals in the trainstation)

The neat thing about copying the Half Life 2 maps into Portal is that you get to see all kinds of things that are impossible otherwise. For example, check out this Vortigaunt from the original Half Life 2:

The Vortigaunts in Half Life 1 all wore those “slave manacles”. According to the Raising The Bar book, there was a subplot planned for HL1 which would have Gordon Freeman leading the Vorts in an uprising against the Xen Masters. Unfortunately they ran out of time to implement this idea (HL1 had already been delayed a few times at that point, and even remade from scratch once), so Gordon defeated the Xen Masters by himself and the Vort uprising happened off-screen between HL1 and HL2.

In HL2, most Vorts you see don’t wear those manacles. In HL2 Episode 1, you only briefly see any Vorts at all and they’re glowing mysteriously. In HL2 Episode 2, the vortigaunt models get a nice shiny-skinned upgrade and you find out the reason for them glowing in Ep1 (they’re “channeling” the “vortessence”).

So what does all this have to do with Portal? Well Portal runs on the same version of the Source engine that HL2 Episode 2 runs off of. You don’t see any Vorts wearing manacles in HL2 Epsiode 2, BUT:

Watch more Portal Videos

As well as generally messing around, I stopped to take a good look at this alternate-universe Vort (which is supposed to be the same one as in the above video if the HL2 map were being run in HL2) who is both shiny and wearing manacles.

Okay, so it’s not a huge deal, and he obviously just wants to get on with his job and not be bothered by me/Chell/Gordon, but it’s neat to see anchronisms like this.

P.S. I’m going to retroactively edit-in a post for Tuesday with links to the original Portal HL2 posts, but I might not actually get around to it until Thursday.

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