Portal 2 writers talk about cut content at PAX
As they discussed the finer points of video game writing during the Plot Vs Play panel at PAX Prime, Portal 2 writers Chet Faliszek and Erik Wolpaw talked about some rather interesting pieces of content that unfortunately found their way to the cutting room floor.
How interesting are talking here? Well, one involves Chell marrying a turret. No really. Chell almost became the bride of an adorable weapon of mass destruction.
Oh and another piece of lost content was a story arc that would have involved Cave Johnson’s re-animated head (which communicates through an intercom) begging for the sweet release of death. Again, this was really going to be a thing.
As part of the first scenario, Chell would have somehow assisted a “lost tribe” of abandoned turrets hidden deep within Aperture and after that, a giant Animal Turret King (because why not?) would reward Chell by marring her to one of the lost turrets. Her new and very devoted wife (I say wife because it was called the “Bride Turret”) would follow her around for the rest of the game.
Unfortunately, this story arc never made it past the conceptual stage, but Valve actually did construct a Bride Turret.
As I said previously, the other scenario involved Chell stumbling upon the re-animated head of Cave Johnson. If this story arc had made it into the game, the eccentric founder of Aperture Science would have explained that his personality is now trapped within a complex computer system due to a failed experiment. The player would then have to solve a series of platforming puzzles in order to reach the computer, shut it down, and put Cave out of this Misery.
Unlike the “lost tribe” storyline, this portion was actually developed as part of the core game. However, it didn’t make it past the play testing phase, as the developers felt it was “too vauge” for the players to enjoy.
It’s shame these storylines were cut, as they both sound like they would have added even more craziness to the game but sometimes in order to get a game shipped, cuts have to be made. In retrospect, Portal 2 was seen as one of the best games of 2011 so maybe these cuts were for the better.
But still, a turret bride and talking Cave Johnson head are still things that sound way too awesome to not exist. Oh well.
For a brief overview of the panel, be sure to click the Game Informer link below. There’s lots of interesting information there about the development of the Portal series and writting for video games.