When a game manages to successfully incorporate five different genres, you know that there is a lot to look forward to.
First of all, I want to mention that this game's storyline is exactly the same as the original "Portal". The "Still Alive" edition was added to the Xbox 360 Arcade mainly because they added some little extras. Very little besides that changed. Anyways, you play as a person who has been chosen to participate in a breakthrough technology that allows fast-travel through portals to teleport you from one place to another. You are there mainly to experiment the breakthrough subject. You have to consciously think every minute about what your next move is going to be, because there's usually only a way or two that a task can be done. Valve manages to successfully incorporate some very excellent, realistic science in it, that deeply expresses how a lot of things in this world really are. You have to watch for these kinds of educational additions, but they are definitely there. Each decision you make as to how you are going to place your portals is based on it, and I commend Valve beyond belief for pulling this off so well. As the game progresses, the puzzles get harder and harder to solve, and things start to get a little weird. You begin to learn some background of the scientific computer who created the whole idea of portal transportation - Glados. I won't say any more than that though, because I don't want to get in trouble for spoiling such an excellent game. Let's just say there's a lot more to the game's story as you move along. The only downside to the storyline is that it's kind of short...but that's all I'm going to type about it! The additions from the first game are great as well. Though I only recommend doing them AFTER you complete the main story, they are still awesome. Basically, they added around 20 new maps to use your portals on. Okay, I guess they're not "new" maps - they're the same as all of the ones you will see throughout the main game. However, the reason they added this feature was to give the gamer a bit more of a challenging experience. They took the original maps, and made them nearly impossible to do unless you really work hard on them. For example, on one map in the regular game there was a cube that you needed to gain access to. If you missed the platform it was on, you would just land on the ground and try it again. On the challenge maps, however, the ground is made of some kind of deadly acidic liquid that will kill you immediately on contact. It really adds a lot of challenge and makes your brain that much more active. Yes, that really is a good thing! It was an excellent addition to the game, and works much better than I had originally anticipated. I also do want to mention something that I have never seen before. Some games in the past have had maybe a couple different genres within the game, or arguably so. But what Valve manages to do with "Portal" is quite amazing. They incorporate, in my opinion, five different genres - puzzle-solving, comedy, adventure, horror, and survival. You'll see what I mean when you play it, which I highly recommend you do. If you've played through the game already, I still recommend buying this one, because the advanced maps that are put in add such an intriguing challenge to the game that makes it that much more fun. Plus, it's only 1200 MS points.
Valve is pretty well-known for not making their graphics the main focus of the game. "Portal" is no exception. The environments are not very detailed, and the environments are not very detailed. Yes, I meant to type the same thing twice. Reason being - there's not much more visual in the game than that, other than being able to tell the difference between a wall that can be shot at with a portal and one that cannot. So there's really not much to say about graphics, but trust me, it makes absolutely no difference what-so-ever. If you could possibly manage to play this game blind, it would be just as good. And that's a compliment, Valve. Relax.
Like I've said throughout this review, "Portal: Still Alive" is an excellent game that is pure addiction. I've played through it probably a dozen times and am going to play some more after I'm finished with this review. In other words, it has extreme replay value even after you beat the game. Sure the game's storyline is short, and the Arcade version is not a brand new game, but it's a damn good one, and one that deserves a lot of credit in creating a new genre of gaming. Truly.
-Anyone in the world