Portal 2 to release early? Potato sack ARG signs point to “yes”

Wednesday, 13th April 2011 08:11 GMT By Nathan Grayson

Valve’s delays are nearly as legendary as the games that suffered them, so you’d be forgiven for spit-taking at the idea that the developer might be letting the pendulum swing the other way. A number of emails purportedly sent by Gabe Newell, however, seem to suggest just that.

As explained by the Potato Sack ARG’s ever-expanding wiki, coded images were sent to many gaming and tech websites – for instance, Mac Rumors, Joystiq, and Kotaku – and summarily beaten with the ol’ Science Bat until warm sense came flowing out of them.

Together, the images became a 3 x 3 message apparently penned by someone within Aperture Science. Among other things, it mentioned the early release of something called “Kick It” and referenced the 13-game Potato Sack lineup.

A final unscrambled message, however, yielded what’s perhaps the most telling bit: a short, sweet, to-the-point string that reads “4/19/2011_7AM=4/15/2011_9AM.”

Meanwhile, Kotaku reports that Bit.Trip Beat’s joined the Portal-themed party as well – and with a highly intriguing message to boot:

“Like the other 12 games in Valve’s Potato Sack, it is rumored that playing BIT.TRIP BEAT between now and Portal 2′s ‘scheduled’ release date might increase the chances that Portal 2 is released early. Interesting idea…”

WINK WINK NUDGE NUDGE. Granted, who knows if Gaijin Games actually let the cat out of the potato sack? It could just be playing along to drum up even more interest in Valve’s spud-flavored shenanigans. Time will definitely tell, though, so mark your calendar for Friday. Or, you know, just remember like a normal person, because that’s only two days from now.



  1. Dralen

    That would be seriously be awesome if this happened!

    #1 4 years ago
  2. onlineatron

    Or it’s the announcement HL3.


    #2 4 years ago
  3. Shubb9

    The most definitive evidence so far for me is that I am pre-loading Portal 2 as I type. Steam never let me pre-load a week in advance before, usually its 24-36hours. So hyped after reading both parts of the comic. GIMME.

    #3 4 years ago
  4. Dralen

    The fact that it’s on your computer and you can’t play it, isn’t that just the biggest tease ever!

    #4 4 years ago
  5. someguy2

    HOLYMOTHERF*CKINGDOGSH*T YES!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    #5 4 years ago
  6. AHA-Lambda


    I LOVE YOU VALVE!!!! ^__^

    #6 4 years ago
  7. Lounds

    POrtal 2 map on Killing floor is good

    #7 4 years ago
  8. Kyzzz

    What about the UK :(

    #8 4 years ago
  9. Soong

    @Kyzz the UK has Steam too you know – or don’t you guys have internet yet over there ;)

    #9 4 years ago
  10. Phoenixblight

    Even if it is released early it would only be for Steam users because retailers would still be following the official release date so lets say they do say release it, Retailers would be scrambling to ship it out. My friend that works at Gamestop that lives in a metropolitan city says they still haven’t received their shipment and won’t see it until possibly Saturday. I also work for retailer and we haven’t received a shipment either and typically don’t get the shipments for electronics until Sunday morning. Usually games are here a week prior to release but thats not the case here.

    SO Yay Steam users! :( But too bad for me I got the PS3 version so I get both the PC and PS3 version.

    #10 4 years ago
  11. DSB

    AR games are fun, man. Awesome job, Valve. Now unlock the damn game already.

    @3 That’s not entirely true. A week seems to be the standard for preloading in my experience, but it also varies from game to game, so it’s kinda up in the air either way.

    It seems to me like the more popular the title, the earlier the preload.

    #11 4 years ago
  12. Dr.Ghettoblaster

    If you think about it, this is a brilliant move by Valve.

    All PS3 buyers get the Steam version free right? Well, think about how many of those PS3 buyers would go ahead and pay for the STEAM version early to get their hands on it over the pre-release weekend! I’d wait, but you know they’d get a lot more sales this way.

    #12 4 years ago
  13. Phoenixblight


    I would certainly hope people wouldn’t pay twice for the same game especially since the PS3 users get the Steam version free. I know I won’t why do such a thing because they have no patience? No, smarter move would be if this is the case was to update this info to retailer and tell them the word is go.

    #13 4 years ago
  14. Lounds

    Is it comfirmed that PS3 version gets a steam code, because I havent heard any offcial about this in months?

    #14 4 years ago
  15. Phoenixblight

    It was announced in January.

    Marking the debut of Steam functioning on any next generation console, the features shipping in the PS3 version of Portal 2 include cross platform play (PC/Mac vs. PS3) for multiplayer games, persistent cloud-based storage of PS3 saved games, and cross platform chat (PC/Mac and PS3).

    In addition, those who purchase Portal 2 for the PlayStation 3 may unlock a Steam Play (PC & Mac) copy of Portal 2 at no additional cost by linking their PSN and Steam accounts.

    #15 4 years ago
  16. Dr.Ghettoblaster

    @13, I know. I wouldn’t either. But the reality is many people WOULD to get their hands on it early. No patience – exactly. Can’t blame STEAM for trying.

    #16 4 years ago
  17. Phoenixblight


    Yeah people that can’t wait 6 days especially if retailers are not ready to put it out early and that means like my friends who are getting on Steam would have to wait until majority of people like me to get their physical game. I don’t understand the rush to beat the SP, thats like saying you won a race and you were the only participant.

    #17 4 years ago
  18. Xuchilbara

    I am guessing this would only be for the Steam / PC version of the game though? Since it is available for pre-load right now.

    #18 4 years ago
  19. Phoenixblight


    Its not confirmed but if this is the case, yes the digital version anyways assuming the etailers are paying attention.

    #19 4 years ago

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