[This post contains spoilers for the Portal series]
Valve’s Portal series is perhaps one of the most iconic and recognisable modern video game series. With memorable characters such as the murderous GLaDOS or the bumbling Wheately in Portal 2. Portal 2 expanded on the rather short original game and had Chell take on increasingly difficult challenges while trying to escape the clutches of Wheately, with the help of foe-turned-friend (and potato) GLaDOS.
One of the most beloved aspects of the Portal series are the obstacles that often stand in your way while trying to complete the levels, namely the turrets. With their machine guns and creepy voices they are a constant pain for any would-be Aperture laboratories escapee. However when Portal 2 is completed and Chell ascends an elevator to her freedom she is met by a synthesised choir of these turrets. This moment of the game is perfectly complimented by the turrets rendition of “Cara Mia Addio”. While being spectacularly bizarre (but typical of Valve) the choir is mesmerizing, moving from a quartet to a full, multi layered choir of voices. The range of “voices” also adds a depth and a certain realistic quality to the sound ranging from the high pitch of the regular turrets to the huge, deep drones of the one enormous turret lurking in the background. There is a full version of the track but a clip from the game sums it up better than I ever could in words.
Portal‘s most iconic character has to be GLaDOS, the murderous AI that almost killed Chell in Portal. GLaDOS’ dark, cynical humour is a source of constant entertainment during Portal 2 and there is no exception in the track that accompanies the credits “Want You Gone” sung by GLaDOS herself. This track is not only pleasing to the ears like many of the tracks on the Portal 2 OST but also captures GLaDOS’ character perfectly. Insulting lines such as “Goodbye my only friend, oh wait did you think I meant you?” sum up GLaDOS and the irreplaceable relationship you have with her whether she is foe, friend or potato.
Of course these are only two tracks of a very comprehensive soundtrack. The entire OST, all 64 tracks, entitled “Songs to Test By” can be downloaded for free via the official Portal 2 website. You can thanks us later.