Gush about Creator/{{Valve|Software}} games here!
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* I love the fact that things taken for [[AcceptableBreaksFromReality granted]] in most video games have a plausible reason in ''VideoGame/{{Portal}}'', even if it isn't explicitly mentioned. Tutorial? You're there to test the gun. Respawning? [=GlaDos=] has your [[BrainUploading brain scanned]]. [[FollowThePlottedLine Following the plotted line]]? [[http://www.game-ism.com/2008/04/13/the-clone-the-cube-and-the-construct-part-1/ [=GlaDos=] wants you to kill her]]. It's a [[MindScrew Mind Heavy Petting]], and I like it.
** This. A million times this. Er... Except maybe the bit about her wanting to die, but yes. Anyway, ''Portal'' is made of awesome and win and ''creativity''- and the last part isn't something you see so much in the games industry anymore.
*** One of the best things about Portal is that it isn't afraid to be a 4 hour game. There's so much padding and repetition in modern games because a game can get crucified for being less than 20 hours long. Portal doesn't overstay its welcome. It does everything it set out to do and departs with one of the best video game songs in recent memory.
*** Oh, and [=GlaDoS=]. Just...[=GlaDoS=]. Oh, look at us still talking when there's science to do...
** After FinalFantasyVI, VideoGame/{{Portal}} comes as [[{{@/Fishsicles}} this troper's]] number two favorite game. The gameplay is intuitive but not overly simplified. The core mechanic is brilliantly done, a highly original idea not diluted with overuse; the introduction of new mechanics, such as the cubes and energy balls, seems perfectly integrated with the central idea. To top off the excellent puzzle-platforming was amazingly-written dialogue, rife with [[BlackHumor amusing and yet disturbing]] tirades from the resident [[AIIsACrapshoot evil computer]], [=GlaDoS=]. Sorry, [[TwoThousandOne HAL 9000]], you are no longer my favorite evil computer.
** And then ''Portal 2'' took everything that made the first game excellent, and made it even better. The campaign is longer, the story is deeper, the puzzles are harder, and it even has a ''co-op'' mode!!! Both games deserve all the "Game of the Year" awards they got.
*** ''[[Videogame/{{Portal2}} PORTAL. TWO.]]'' VideoGame/{{Portal}} may have been just a side attraction for VideoGame/HalfLife2 and VideoGame/TeamFortress2, but [[VideoGame/{{Portal2}} Portal 2]] showed us the real insanity that is Aperture Sciences, and it did so in FULL GLORY. [[spoiler: And let's not forget the WhamEpisode...]]
* The work of absolute, inarguable genius that is the ''VideoGame/{{Half-Life}}'' series.
** Oh, I agree so much! VideoGame/{{Half-Life 2}} was the first full-length "real" video game I ever played (VideoGame/{{Portal}} was the first, but it's much shorter) and... it was absolutely awesome. The entire Half-Life series is amazing, but [=HL2=] is hands-down my favorite. There's an {{Adorkable}} old scientist with big glasses and a pet headcrab, a giant robot "dog", the two most fun weapons ever (the gravity gun... and the ''blue'' gravity gun! The crossbow and pheropods should be on the list too...), an incredibly fun airboat, and one of the best female video game characters of all time. Seriously, Alyx Vance is my hero. She's smart, funny, can kick your butt, and looks good while doing all of the above. Is there really any criticism that can be made of this game?
* VideoGame/{{Half-Life|1}}. The first one on PC is one of the best first person shooters ever made! It was this troper's first FPS, and at 5 years old, no less! It had some of the best levels, best enemies([[GoddamnedBats Stupid headcrabs...]]), enviroments, music, sound effects (Yes. Those brilliant beeps when you scroll over those brilliant shades of orange are awesome as well.), and my god. [[MemeticBadass GORDON FREEMAN!]] One of the most famous {{HeroicMime}}s ever! Oh yeah, he's also a [[BadassNormal PHYSICIST.]] And the second game... this troper found a PS2 port of Half Life 1 and bought it and played it, and it is STILL one of the best first person shooters ever made IMHO! Except for [[ThatOneLevel Blast Pit...]]
* ''VideoGame/TeamFortress2'' has to be one of my favorite games ever. To me, it's the best multiplayer [[FirstPersonShooter FPS]] I've ever played in my life, and especially the best class-based shooter. Each class is so lovingly designed to fit its role. Hell, it's almost like you can play a different kind of game just by changing your class or your loadout. You can sneak around as a spy, build strategic defenses as an engineer, ambush as a pyro, set traps as a demoman, you name it. The development team is awesome at working out bugs and adding new content without destroying the game's balance. Even if the balance does go to hell, Valve is right on top of their game, ready to fix it at a moment's notice. Honestly, I've never seen such good developer-community interaction in my life. Not to mention 2fort2furious is probably the best server I've ever played on, but that's another story. Another cool part about the game is that the developers brought the Team Fortress series back to its class-based roots. The original game was turning into a huge StopHavingFunGuys marathon, with physics glitch-abusing and grenade-spamming becoming the standard. I'm pretty sure that [=TF2=] alone has made me a Valve fan.
** [=TF2=] is my favorite game right now! What gets me is how often they update a game that's MORE THAN 2 YEARS OLD!!
** [=TF2=] is an amazing game. Those were 9 years well spent to put this together: the mechanics, the details, the various character personalities and backgrounds. Valve might troll every so often, but this pales in comparison to the love they lavish on this creation. But what possibly even better than the game is the {{Fandom}}. The ratio of good to bad games I've played definitely tips towards the positive side. So many people know how to just roll with the game, having fun by either working together to complete a mission or to just dick around doing silly things. And even outside of the game, so many people have shown their love for it by cobbling together some of the [[WMG/TeamFortress2 most hilariously awesome fan-theories]] or making some great {{Cosplay}}s. It's so cool how this whole enterprise has held together for so long.
** Oh man, this has got to be the best online FPS game ever made. I love the concepts of the teamwork and communication based gameplay it has on display as well as how they're executed. The teamwork comes from all of the separate little things that you don't always notice, but are still important to the game. Every class has it's strengths and weaknesses, as well as a goal they are meant to be working towards in the map. This means that you need to communicate with other players in order to have them cover your weaknesses and have you cover theirs. When 2 or more classes combine their strengths and cover each other's shortcomings, they can do some serious damage in the map, much more than either of them could have alone. Another factor that makes it my favorite game is that the game has probably the best sense of humor I've ever seen in a game. Everything about each character is funny, interesting, clever and unique. From their exaggerated visual designs to their ridiculous and purposely fake accents to their over the top and hilarious dialogue ([[MemeticMutation SPAH SAPPIN MAH SENTRY!!!]]). Just watch some of the Meet the videos Valve has released on the [=TF2=] blog or listen to some of their domination dialogue on Website/YouTube. If they don't at least get a chuckle out of you, you must not have a sense of humor. There's so much self consciousness and [[BreakingTheFourthWall 4th wall breaking moments]] in the game that it's almost as if it's a parody of an FPS than an actual FPS. I love how the Sniper drives a "Camper Van", and how Scout tells someone that he just killed to ragequit, like the characters know that they're in a video game. The icing on the cake [insert bad ''VideoGame/{{Portal}}'' joke here] is the added fact that Valve still consistently updates and gives constant attention to the game! For FREE! after 2 YEARS! IN A CAVE, WITH A BOX OF SCRAPS! When anyone asks me why I like Valve so much, I point them to this game.
** [=TF2=] convinced me that not only online FPS, but also FPS in general, is fun.
** The main reason I love [=TF2=] is because it's different from the standard run-of-the-mill FPS. Most FPS's have dark and realistic graphics and a serious tone, but [=TF2=] is colorful, cartoonish, funny as hell, and ''never'' takes itself seriously. It's always amusing to see cartoonish characters being horribly murdered, dismembered, decapitated, blown to bits, incinerated, doused in urine, getting an arrow to the head, etc. Also, it has the greatest community I've ever known, not just in FPS's, but games in general. I'll meet a few assholes every now and then, but most of the players I meet are very kind, funny, and fun to play with.
** VideoGame/TeamFortress2 is '''the''' VideoGame FountainOfMemes, and don't let anyone tell you otherwise.
** Team Fortress 2-A lovely FPS-no, SCRAP THAT, a ''bloody goddamn brilliant'' war-themed hat simulator in an absolutely hilarious CrapsackWorld with amazing graphics, beautiful maps, stunning gameplay, a generally friendly community, colourful, cartoonish, an awesome art style based on JC Leyendecker, with nine fun classes, hats, miscs and the most hilarious weapons possible? ''FUCK YES!''
* VideoGame/TeamFortressClassic. [[Tropers/DemonFiren This troper]] believes in the power of DarkerAndEdgier, and in the power of [[GatlingGood Fully-automated rotary]] [[ShotgunsAreJustBetter shotguns]] - thanks, Heavy.
** While it doesn't have a much features as its sequel, the classes' weapons, the amount of maps available, and the small but very dedicated fanbase makes this troper enjoy his Friday nights than any other game here.
* While the ''VideoGame/Left4Dead'' series might not be up there with the likes of ''Half-Life'', ''Portal'', or ''Team Fortress 2'', it's still a very enjoyable series that pays a nice homage/tribute to 80's horror films. It's not scary, but it will make you panic and freak a lot, like when a Tank is coming, or when you hear the moaning of a nearby Witch. And when playing on multiplayer, the experience becomes even more fun.
** Plus, it's one of the few games that gets co-op absolutely perfectly. If you do not work together, if you run off on your own, if you be a griefer, you will die.
* {{VideoGame/Dota 2}} is in my opinion, one of Valve's greatest creations, absolute replication of the original game with massively detailed heroes that are very distinct and having unique animations as well as items being unique. You will start with a tutorial that will teach you how to play before you can step into the wonderful world of matchmaking. But the real positive aspect is that it is absolutely free to play, you don't have to pay for heroes, just the cosmetics and they also hosted [[http://www.dota2.com/tournaments/international/announcement/ The International]] tournament annually, i.e the biggest e-sports tournament of all time. You can get the game for free [[http://store.steampowered.com/app/570/ here]].