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Thursday, December 6, 2007

A Glitch in the Portal

[Update: Click here.]

For all the sweet gaming goodness that comes with The Orange Box, there are some glitches that can really dampen the mood a little. I ran into a glitch last night while playing Portal that has me somewhat pissed off - not enough to dislike Portal in the slightest yet enough to write about it. It appears that Portal has save game issues that can cause you to lose achievements (rumoured) and unlocked game modes (proven...by me...last night!).

While playing through the Level 16 advanced map, I got stuck and saved my game. The game can be pretty challenging and I don't feel that I was doing anything out of the ordinary by saving my game. My plan was to think about what I was trying to do, speak to a friend, then continue playing the advanced map.

Last night, I continued playing Portal from my last saved game. I was pretty excited to finish off the level because I would unlock another achievement while continuing along the path to Portal mastery. I managed to finish Advanced Level 16...but no achievement. Weird. And then I went to load another advanced map: that's when I noticed that all my advanced maps and modes were missing.

It appears that by reloading a saved game while in the midst of finishing off an advanced map, I inadvertently glitched my game. I'll now be forced to replay Portal in order to re-unlock all the goodies that come with finishing the game. It's pretty annoying but I was planning on playing the game through again. I might be able to reload from my last save prior to finishing Portal the first time: maybe that'll work?

You can read a full discussion of the glitch on this forum thread from the Xbox games forum. And here are the search results when I searched for Portal glitches in The Orange Box forum. Educate yourself and you might just save yourself quite a bit of frustration.

In any case, until Valve patches Portal's save game glitch, please be careful. When playing any of the time trial modes, least portal modes, or advanced maps, be sure to play through the entire level in one sitting; otherwise, there may be no cake for you...

UPDATE: I decided to play Portal last night and discovered that all the unlocked modes and maps that went missing with the glitch were back again. It seems that simply restarting the game fixed my issue with the game, though I'm not sure if everyone experiencing this glitch was so lucky. In any case, I'm back in business again!