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Portal is free on Steam until September 20

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It's easy to miss the complex problem solving and spatial reasoning needed to complete Portal because the game is so engaging. But even though Portal will be four years old next month, its physics-based puzzles still require critical thinking way beyond today's average first-person shooter. That's probably why some classrooms, like The Evergreen School's seventh grade, have chosen to use Portal as a learning tool.

Valve recently invited the seventh graders to take a field trip to its studios where teams of three learned how to use the Hammer level editor and create their own rooms in the game. For educators the trip was a great way to bridge the gap between the math and physics being taught in the classroom with examples of real-world professionals using those skills to create amazing things. For Valve it was exciting to see their software being used in such a positive way. In fact, the company was so happy with the trip that they documented the trip with a short video and made Portal available for free until September 20.

The free version isn't just for students and it's not a trial version of the game due to expire in a few days. Anyone can download the full game for Mac or PC from Steam right now. Be cautious though because this game may be educational. And if we learned anything from Math Blasters and Mavis Beacon Teaches Typing, it's that learning is boring — at least it used to be.

Sep 16, 2011

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12 comments

  • ABACADA6494 - September 17, 2011 8:33 a.m.

    "how do you use the toilet?" "You press e..." wow awesome! wish i was a seventh grader in that class
  • nai1210 - September 16, 2011 6:42 p.m.

    Ace,my rubbish laptop prob won't run it but what the hell it's free,nice one valve/steam you guy's make me want a gaming PC
  • Nap1400 - September 16, 2011 6:19 p.m.

    I missed the last time Portal went free. I'm not missing it again. Too bad I'm probably not going to get as much enjoyment out of it as Portal 2. (Yeah, I played the sequel but not the original. Shut up.)
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  • Darkhawk - September 16, 2011 5:42 p.m.

    The nice thing is this isn't even the first time Portal's been Steam-free. Good job, Valve!
  • Rizzo - September 16, 2011 3:29 p.m.

    Holy amazing batman. Valve is the bestestest company ever, and that teacher deserves paid early retirement for being so freaking awesome.
  • Nintygameplayerperson - September 16, 2011 3:11 p.m.

    AAAAWWWW YEEEEAAAAAAH!!!!!
  • Mezolitik - September 16, 2011 2:34 p.m.

    Yesterday, my friend said to me, "buy Portal on Steam, so we can play together". I said, "I'm sorry, I can't afford it". Take that bank balance! I love Valve. And Steam.
  • D0CCON - September 17, 2011 3:02 p.m.

    How do you play together in Portal 1? It's 2 that has the coop.
  • losthero15 - September 16, 2011 2:30 p.m.

    I was going to do something constructive today not happening now
  • ggbrad - September 16, 2011 1:44 p.m.

    I LOOOOOOOOOOOVE YOU VALVE
  • 510BrotherPanda - September 16, 2011 12:55 p.m.

    Portal was free on Steam a while ago, but it's nice that they are "making it so" again.

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