10 Things You Didn't Know About Portal

9. It's Based On A Student Project

Portal 2
Nuclear Monkey Software

Valve may be one of the world's largest game developers, but many of its greatest games have surprisingly humble beginnings. Portal began life as a student project by the name of Narbacular Drop, created by a small team of budding game design students at DigiPen.

The game takes place in a bleak, isolated dungeon and tasks the player with solving a series of navigational and logical puzzles by manipulating a pair of linked portals, coloured orange and blue to distinguish them.

Sound familiar? Gabe Newell, Valve's CEO, took interest in the students' work and hired the entire development team to expand the short project into a full game.

Soon, the game was complete, and Portal was born. Released as a bonus game in Valve's Orange Box collection as a way of apologising for the delay to Half-Life 2: Episode 2, Portal went on to be a surprise global sensation and become arguably Valve's most famous and beloved title.

Gabe Newell's brave investment in a handful of pioneering students clearly paid off, and we have said students to thank for the existence of one of the best games of all time.

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Patch is a pop culture enthusiast and purveyor of puns. He writes about media in a vague attempt to justify the alarming amount of time he spends consuming it. Nobody's convinced... but nobody's told him that yet. He spends his spare time working on Portal 2: Desolation, an ambitious fan-made sequel to Valve's beloved puzzle games.