Aperture Tag: The Paint Gun Testing Initiative is a Portal 2 Mod. It's time to think with Gels! The Portal-Gun is gone, but the testing must go on! Grab the Paint-Gun Device and solve brand new test chambers in ways you've never solved them before!
User reviews: Mostly Positive (1,366 reviews)
Release Date: Jul 15, 2014

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Community-Made Mod

This community-made mod requires that you have Portal 2 installed prior to running this game.

Click here to learn more about mods on Steam.

Aperture Tag: The Paint Gun Testing Initiative

 

Recommended By Curators

"Aperture Tag: The Paint Gun Testing Initiative is a Portal 2 Mod but for money"
Read the full review here.

Reviews

“If you're like me, when you played Portal 2, you covered every room in as much bouncy gel as possible. Well now it's a whole lot easier, and you can color coordinate the walls with orange gel.”
Kotaku

“A surprising and fresh revival of Portal 2’s familiar puzzle elements.”
Jeep Barnett

“It looks great, it plays well, and it lasts 2-3 hours, giving it good value for money.”
ValveTime

Steam Greenlight

About This Game

Aperture Tag: The Paint Gun Testing Initiative is a community-made mod for Portal 2, inspired by TAG! The Power of Paint. The familiar Portal 2 gels are now contained within the Aperture Science Paint Gun Device and it's your job to test it out!

Featuring a new personality-core and an original story with 27 polished levels; the mod offers an exciting and fun experience in varied and interesting new locations throughout Aperture Science.

Introducing gels as the core gameplay mechanic completely changes the way you solve puzzles, explore, and survive all the challenges thrown at you!

Key Features

  • New Gameplay Mechanics for Portal 2
  • 27 Original Maps and a Full Campaign
  • A New Character with Original Voice-Acting
  • In-Game Level Editor
  • Access to the Source Files used to create the Aperture Tag
  • Single-Player and Co-op Workshop Integration with Source Instances to create your own Paint Gun Maps
  • Steam Trading Cards
  • Full Developer Commentary
  • Completely original Soundtrack by Abarax, Harry101UK, and Christopher McEvoy

System Requirements

Windows
Mac OS X
    Minimum:
    • OS: Windows 7 / Vista / XP
    • Processor: 3.0 GHz P4, Dual Core 2.0 (or higher) or AMD64X2 (or higher)
    • Memory: 1GB XP / 2 Vista GB RAM
    • Graphics: Video card must be 128 MB or more and should be a DirectX 9-compatible with support for Pixel Shader 2.0b (ATI Radeon X800 or higher / NVIDIA GeForce 7600 or higher / Intel HD Graphics 2000 or higher).
    • Hard Drive: 4 GB available space
    • Additional Notes: Requires a Steam version of Portal 2 Installed
    Minimum:
    • OS: MAC OS X 10.6.7 or higher
    • Processor: Intel Core Duo Processor (2GHz or better)
    • Memory: 2 GB RAM
    • Graphics: ATI Radeon 2400 or higher / NVIDIA 8600M or higher / Intel HD Graphics 3000
    • Hard Drive: 4 GB available space
    • Additional Notes: Requires a Steam version of Portal 2 Installed
Helpful customer reviews
113 of 116 people (97%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
14.5 hrs on record
Posted: February 28
Story:

+ Excellent Story Proccessing
+ 2 different endings
- Doesn't matches with Portal 2's story
- Aperture Science actually doesn't have A.L.S.S.E.R

Characters:

+ Nigel is your only friend
+ Nigel sometimes gives you really good advices
+ Nigel reflects its emotions perfectly
+ Nigel talks at unexpected moments (such as when you do something that you actually shouldn't do)
+ Good sense of humor
- Nigel doesn't have a backstory

Environment:

+ Old Aperture levels are amazing
+ At Test Chamber 3 (I think) you can see one of the darkest and biggest test shaft of all time
+ Excellent detailing
+ There are lots of alternative ways to solve puzzles
+ Behind the Scenes areas are really show you behind the scenes of Aperture universe
+ When you finish a test chamber, you have to use "transport tubes" (like Portal 2 testing apparatus transportation tubes) instead of standard elevators. And you'll see more behind the scenes areas while travelling in tube
+ Some levels don't require loading
+ You solve some old style puzzles in salt mine caves
- Some logical problems
- Cubemap, water reflection, and some visual problems (like lighting issues)
- Some textures repeating (and it's bad)

Music:
+ Awesome soundtrack
+ Sounds and musics supports environment very well
+ You can feel lots of emotions while listening musics
+ Steam Soundtrack support (without payment)

Graphics:

+ This game builded on same Source Engine version as Portal 2 uses, so graphics actually same as Portal 2
+ Awasome fog and lighting effect
+ Deep environment feeling
+ Nigel looks so good
- Repeated, streched textures

Voice Acting:

+ Lots of people don't like voice actor of Nigel, but for me, its good
+ Nigel can reflect his emotions very well

Overall score: 91/100

Thank you for reading my review.
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56 of 68 people (82%) found this review helpful
2 people found this review funny
3.3 hrs on record
Posted: November 17, 2014
The good: well executed concept, with maps that give you a real challenge and a thrilling soundtrack.
The bad: some mechanics are not explained clearly and may take a while to understand properly.
The ugly: some overlooked bugs and rare save-corrupting crashes.
Overall: 4/5
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
23 of 35 people (66%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
4.4 hrs on record
Posted: November 6, 2014
A nice mod. And I didn't find the voice acting to be NEARLY as bad as lots of people have said. It's not that bad at all.
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
8 of 9 people (89%) found this review helpful
2 people found this review funny
4.2 hrs on record
Posted: March 7
As far as mods go, this one is pretty decent.

This mod introduces more puzzles, new settings, new puzzle elements and mechanics, a new character and a bit more time in the world of Aperture Science.

Story wise it doesn’t really add on to the original story, nor does it really have a story of its own, but it’s fun none the less.

When you look at the trailer this mod seems more fast paced then either original Portal games, but in my opinion it isn’t. If anything I kind of felt that the paint mechanic slowed down the momentum of solving chambers. Sometimes the jumps can be hard to predict and shooting mid-air isn’t as easy as it looks. I’m not even ashamed to admit I started resorting to the old school F6 to quick save feature. Which I literally never used in any of the other games!

I got a little frustrated at times while playing through this mod because of the above reason, but not enough for it to ruin the experience for me. I still think it’s a good idea and a great little addition to the franchise. At times it weirdly reminded me of the Half-Life franchise, which I thought was intriguing.

The new character is… interesting. It doesn’t really make it clear who they are, why they are there or where in the Portal timeline this whole thing is supposed to be, but it is definitely interesting.
As far as characters go they aren’t as good as previous Portal characters. This character hasn’t the passive aggressive charm GLaDOS does nor the silly moronic charm Wheatley does. But they’re alright. They just had a lot to live up to, I suppose! Plus at the end of the day this is just a mod.

The voice acting isn’t amazing, but it’s not horrific either. It was acceptable I would say. Maybe that’s me just being a little harsh, but I’m not sure. Maybe I’m just so used to the franchise the way it is the change was uncertain for me.

All in all I liked this, it was fun. For a mod I would say the length is fair. It’s not like a whole new separate game but it’s not some short demo either. It’s fair.

If you are a fan of the franchise, I would say this is definitely worth a try. It’s a nice little addition but nothing too amazing.


TL;DR : Fun new puzzles/mechanics, a new (slightly questionable) character and a kind of story but-not-a-story storyline. An intriguing and great addition to the franchise but definitely not a Portal 3 kind of deal.
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9 of 11 people (82%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
7.4 hrs on record
Posted: February 21
Pros
+Good commentary and voice acting
+Fun chase scenes and puzzles
+Great custom textures
+Workshop Editor
+Humor involved
+ Two different endings
+Game lets you mess around freely with gel
+Secrets
+Places neatly into Portal lore

Cons
-Little replay value, except for speedrunning

Overall Score: 9/10
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12 of 17 people (71%) found this review helpful
4.3 hrs on record
Posted: November 16, 2014
It's definitely worth the price. I tought the gels would make the puzzles easier, but when I played the game I was surprised: It' might be more difficult than the original portal.
If you're a fan of portal, buy it, you wont regret

+The story is good, unfortunately the backstory is missing
+Congratulations for the voicework, before I've bought it I read some reviews that was saying the voice acting was bad. The voice acting is really good (perhaps the voice is a little thin) but it fells like portal, the robot dialoging "with you" all the time
+Funny events in the game
+Easter eggs and secrets
+Alternative endings
+fun fun fun
+I haven't found any major bug, or something that will disturb the gamplay, I think its very polished
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
16 of 25 people (64%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
0.7 hrs on record
Posted: November 21, 2014
Takes one of my favorite games of all time, and adds gel guns? Get. Me. To. The. Hospital. NOW.
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17 of 27 people (63%) found this review helpful
45.7 hrs on record
Posted: November 16, 2014
This game is one of the most fun games based off a great game. Portal 2, everyone who plays it, loves it. Unless they hate puzzles and thinking. Anyways, Aperture Tag. Its time to think with Gels. The Gels from Portal 2 are now in your hands and ready to fire. Solving more puzzles and finding the secret areas in the levels. Can you find Ratman's Hideout? Can you find the secret song in area 3 (metal version of Still Alive)? Any one who plays this game and is not happy, download the communities maps. So much potential in a short game, and it has it all. You also have the ability to add Crushers to your own maps. Good luck Test Subjects.
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
5 of 6 people (83%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
4.3 hrs on record
Posted: February 21
These modders have game design down to a SCIENCE!!



Now that I got my funny out of the way, lemme be serious. No humour further on if you're looking for that, so stop reading.
I literally mean they have the game to a science. Imagine game design as a checklist: They did it... But this game, is suffering from what all modern games are suffering from: Lack of Fine tuning.
Oh yeah, I should get this out of the way: I am going to refer to this as a game, not mod. This is because, not only I payed money for it and now have high standards, but because it felt like something new, something different.

Since they completed the checklist, this game has what is required of them: It was fun, it was clever, it was unique. Gameplay-wise, it couldn't have been better!

But there are so many flaws that I could never get over: They bugged me from the moment I started playing to the moment I finished the game. I'm going to start with the characters: Nigel. I'm comparing Aperture Tag to Portal 2, so in terms of character development, the modding team for this game should have had higher standards. Nigel doesn't have a bad voice or character necessarily, he feels generic.
In Portal 2, it's obvious what each kind of character is: Adventure Core is an action-addict, Wheatley thinks he's clever, tries, but fails, Space Core has a childlike optimism, and the Fact Core is a dictionary that's occasionally full of himself. And GLaDOS... We all know who GLaDOS is. Each persolity is PERFECT.

Nigel.

Nigel seems so generic that it's hard to tell who he is, and the biggest factor is the voice: Just by listening to them, you can tell who each character is. The other characters stood out, I can quote off the top of my head something from each of them because their voice matched their character and stick out. All I know is that Nigel said a few things that make me chuckle. That's all I know from his character. Nothing about him stood out. Not a bad voice, not a bad character... But if he's going to be the Jiminy Cricket in my pocket, he needs to be special, unique, not generic.

Another thing that bugged me is the paint gun. Graphically, it's nice, the jigglebones inside the glass bits could've been better, especially should've reacted to gravity, maybe even copied from Team Fortress 2 liquids.
The biggest problem with it is that it had almost no animations. Portal 2, doing anything had an animation. Pressing E whenever there's nothing there jiggled the gun, firing portals made it react. The paint gun sits there, lifeless, almost unnecessary, especially since the paint comes from the middle of your face in the first person... That's a bit weird, I want paint to come from my gun, not my face.

Oh, and back on Nigel. His eye was reused from the fact core, just recoloured. Come on, guys! Even people in the Garry's Mod community know that's A VERY BAD THING. Even the shade of orange looks like the Space Core!

Penultimately, I feel like they reused a few too many resource from Portal 2 in the earlier levels. Now this isn't too big of a problem... Except that they have competition with "Thinking with Time Machine", which had custom visuals from the get-go! It felt like something new! Aperture Tag, on the other hand, reused resources when they had a chance to make new resources. Now I understand cannonically, that it would be difficult to make new resources... And in the later levels, it wasn't an ussue at all with the themed artificial nature, that was BRILLIANT!! But still, just a texture swap would've been nice.
The antique turrets were awesome.
Also, being able to load your saves would be cool too. Especially if you get stuck someplace impossible: http://steamcommunity.com/sharedfiles/filedetails/?id=392163421
Come on, guys.
This moves me onto last thing: Gameplay. So we all have that need to cover everything in paint, right? Turns out, a few times made me regret it. I'll splot blue paint throughout the entire room, but regret it because the cube won't stop bouncing. This particular level won't have orange paint, so I'll have to deal with it. They need to implement water whenever an alternative paint is out of use.
Anyway, this game is worth your time if you like fun... But there will always be one thing to slightly bother you. ALWAYS.
Hey, creators of this mod! Now make it so that you can play the Portal 2 levels with it! And Hydra support! And co-op in the campaign! Somehow! NOTICE ME.
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7 of 10 people (70%) found this review helpful
16.9 hrs on record
Posted: March 6
Do you like Portal 2?
Do you like Repulsion Gel?
Do you like Propulsion Gel?
DO YOU LOVE CORES?
Then you will love this mod... 10/10
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
22 of 39 people (56%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
3.5 hrs on record
Posted: December 15, 2014
10/10 not enough cake references
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
9 of 15 people (60%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
11.0 hrs on record
Posted: December 24, 2014
i wanted a better ending mabby a boss fight other than that it was good
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4 of 6 people (67%) found this review helpful
2.9 hrs on record
Posted: April 14
This game is not the usual Portal game you might think it is, you don't shoot portals nor do you get frustrated about the fact that wheatly is watching your back. The big thing about this game is that it uses the gells that were used in Portal 2. Your gun uses the blue and the orange gell.
Pros:
-It's different from the Portal puzzles.
-It has a new personality core that follows you around.
-It is challenging.

Cons:
-Might be different from the puzzles you're used to do.

But afterall i really recommend this game to any fans from the portal series.
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4 of 6 people (67%) found this review helpful
1.7 hrs on record
Posted: April 1
One of the best mods for Portal 2
it really brings out the feature they didnt used much in the main game
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6 of 10 people (60%) found this review helpful
1.4 hrs on record
Posted: December 24, 2014
I bought two copies of this game, one for myself and one for my son. We run Linux. The mod does not work out of the box. Fortunately, the fix is easy. Please see the following post: http://steamcommunity.com/app/280740/discussions/1/617321352330994236/#c619573787452815252
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2 of 3 people (67%) found this review helpful
9.0 hrs on record
Posted: December 4, 2014
A really cracking mod that delivers all of the humor, atmosphere and entertainment one would expect from a Portal game.

And for the price? It's definitely worth picking this up!
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3 of 5 people (60%) found this review helpful
1.1 hrs on record
Posted: December 18, 2014
I don't know about you guys, but I'm kinda fond of a little game we on the internet like to call 'Portal' and indeed its successor 'Portal 2'. However, there was a serious problem with these games, unforgivable some might say. They are too damn short! I've completed Portal 2 three times now and I'm one co-op achievement away from 100%ing it. I do not feel fulfilled in the Portal department these days.

But wait... could it be... a game with more portals...?

CORRECT LADIES AND GENTLEMEN, MORE PORTALS FOR ALL! You get a paint gun and you paint everywhere, the portals are back too and so are some familiar environments! There's a new guy talking to you who I find quite amusing (unlike every other reviewer of this game apparently...), the soundtrack is even better than Portal 2's somehow! What more could you ask for?! I don't know what the talk of bugs is, I've seen none! The game also seems to be getting some new content from updates recently too, so what are you waiting for?

Get down to your local Steam shop and buy yourself this here game. Aperture science got me thinking with... paint..?

10/10 WOULD PORTAL AGAIN
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3 of 5 people (60%) found this review helpful
5.5 hrs on record
Posted: January 6
Good Portal 2 Mod with nice extensions of the normal game. Still has the good puzzling atmosphere from the original Portals and fits perfectly in the Portal Universe. Could be more content for the money I paid but I still love it.

9/10
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3 of 5 people (60%) found this review helpful
13.1 hrs on record
Posted: January 7
Aperture Tag.

I was skeptical at first but overall, I like it. It's a good expansion on the gel mechanic from Portal 2- and I can't think of much they could've done to improve on it aside from what's already been done.

The story takes place after Portal 2 sometime- and it takes you through several environments from and based around Portal 2. The story features an original character in the form of a core named Nigel. His voice acting is alright- and story is actually rather well done- but it takes a back seat to the puzzles and level design; speaking of which- the overall level design is clever and well thought out for the most part. It’s worth noting that the game is quite a bit more difficult than Portal or Portal 2. You'll likely find yourself dying far more often in this due to some occasionally unpredictable physics or just due to a lack of skill on the players part. The game has an original soundtrack as well- all of which are very fitting for their environments.

Overall- I'd say Aperture Tag is good enough to buy if it's on sale- but maybe not worth it if you have to pay full price. Of course- to play you need to own Portal 2- but who in their right mind wouldn't own Portal 2 if they're interested in Aperture Tag? Last thing to mention is that the game features workshop support- so you can design your own maps for Aperture tag- and play others maps as well- just like in Portal 2- which is a nice touch. The map community isn't as active for this as it is for Portal 2- but it’s still incredibly nice to have.

Definitely pick it up if you have a Portal itch that you just can't seem to scratch- even with workshop maps from Portal 2- or with Thinking with Time Machine (Another Portal 2 mod which is free).
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3 of 5 people (60%) found this review helpful
7.4 hrs on record
Posted: January 5
Just finished my second playthrough of this game. Overall I'd recommend it for any Portal fan - it provides some great puzzles while we're all desperately waiting for Valve to count to 3.

I find it kinda sad that the top rated reviews are majority negative. The game isn't THAT bad! Yes, the storyline and voice-acting isn't all that fantastic, but then again it's not an official release. It follows more Portal's style of test chamber after test chamber, with little bits of story/escape stuffed in between. Personally I did not like the 50 second escape part, as the gun can be a bit finnicky at times, and your gel takes time to splatter. Very easy and common for you to land before your gel hits and you're pretty much dead. It also leaves very little room for error - when he says that you cannot pause for even a second he sure wasn't kidding. A bit more leeway (maybe bring it up to 60seconds?) would have been nice. Luckily, you can skip this part, and I chose to for my second playthrough.

Other criticism - you find yourself re-attempting jumps many times as you soon realise it's a lot more about correcting your jumps rather than placement of gels. It can however be quite frustrating because some jumps can be quite tight to make. Recommendation to manual save as the autosave isn't really trustworthy. Unlike Portal 2 where autosave kicks in at almost every minor obstacle passed, this autosave is spotty at best.

I liked the re-using of certain maps from the original Portal - it's really refreshing to be able to use an alternative method rather than the portals that we all know and love.

Plus points for being able to speed around like a maniac to save time.

Overall I'd recommend this game only on sale. While I think that it's a decent addon/mod to Portal, it's debatable if it's worthy of its SGD5.50 price tag. Otherwise, it's a good way to re-immerse yourself in the Portal world for a good couple of hours. 7/10
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