Sunday, April 5, 2009

Portal: Prelude approaches the million downloads

Posted by Nicolas (permalink)

Almost six months passed since the first release of Portal: Prelude, and even if the team is now working hard on something else, we keep watching our big baby grow more and more every day. Six monthes after the release, the time has come for a little overview of the situation.

My Portal: Prelude folder in Thunderbird contains 2246 emails. I can't count the ones I didn't replied to, but it shouldn't be more than 3 or 4 hundred max. In fact, it means that we reveived approximately 13 messages a day since the release... but it's flawed by the fact we probably received 50% of them during the first month. Anyway, it's a lot of text.

The most important part of this article is that we made another approximation of the total download count since the release, because we're curious. We merged the download counts of each version (1.0.0, 1.1.0 and 1.1.5 only, not including patches) of each of our mirrors and browsed the whole Internet searching for alternate mirrors... and the result is quite impressive.

Evolution of downloads since the release
Evolution of downloads since the release

We listed 748,493 confirmed downloads, which means there was something like 450,000 new downloads between Christmas 2008 and today. At this rate, we'll reach the million downloads in more or less 2 months. That's crazy because it also means the mod is still downloaded more or less 4,000 times a day six months after the release. Two times more than during the first month.

'New' vs 'olds' downloads since the release
Evolution of downloads since the release

Well, no need to tell you it's far from what we've been expecting when we made this little project. The funniest part beeing that we probably already exceeded the million, because we can't count how many times the mod was distributed in DVD and CD-ROM along with famous magazines such as Igromania in Russia, PC Action in Germany, PC Games in UK or PC Powerplay in Australia.

For the few (or maybe not) of you that are still arriving on this website for the first time, welcome! Take your time to understand what's going on via the links on the right and feel free to download the mod if you wish, I added a bit more mirrors to the list since the flow of downloads doesn't seem to decrease.

22 comment(s)


 April 5, 2009 7:30 PM, Anonymous cbrain said :
Brilliant. I only wish the forums were a little more popular.

Once again, Portal Prelude is a fabulous piece of work. It's inspired me to make my own Portal mod.

 April 5, 2009 9:33 PM, Anonymous ben said :
Has PORTAL PRELUDE been in contact with Valve at all? I mean, they put Hen M.'s work into an expansion pack. They should do the same thing with this (much better) game. Please update us on the Valve factor.

 April 5, 2009 10:19 PM, Anonymous cbrain said :
@ben: There's been a few blog and forum posts about this. It doesn't look like it's going to happen. :(

 April 7, 2009 9:26 PM, Anonymous kne1pe said :
your English is fine usually, but i guess you meant "working hard" when you wrote "hardly working".

The last one would mean you almost don't work at all ;)

Keep up the good work!

 April 7, 2009 9:30 PM, Blogger Nicolas said :
Thanks, fixed it.

 April 10, 2009 10:10 PM, Blogger ViktorMardigras said :
I haven't finished the game yet but I am sure there will be a lot of new mysteries and problems to solve and even exciting new surprises, but if you haven't done this already, then maybe you should put in a code or something as in the previous game or that recipe for the "Cake", because I have noticed subliminal messages in the aperture science's computers with the ingredients and so. Just a tip of course! (Sorry for my bad spelling, I hope you will understand!)

 April 10, 2009 10:15 PM, Blogger ViktorMardigras said :
Did you also make the new mod for Portal called "Portal Still alive" or cooperated with the makers of the game in some way. I mean, that they maybe got inspired by your maps and made some too, but didn't add a new story to it like you did. I am just curios, that's all...

 April 11, 2009 1:14 AM, Blogger Nicolas said :
Nope, nothing to do with us, Still Alive in a console downloadable content made from the Flash Map Pack of Hen Mazolski.

 April 14, 2009 8:39 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said :
You really need to make: portal - Prelude2.

 May 1, 2009 12:47 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said :
Man, i'm here to say to you guys that your work is the one of the most incredible games, it cannot be called a mod because it is better than the original game, really challenging, and i am proud to say that i have completed without any kind of cheat, but spended some good hours on it, one question, why steam doens't put it for download ? it's really stupid doens't put a incredible game for free on a game distribution platform...

 May 1, 2009 5:44 PM, Blogger Nicolas said :
@last Anonymous:
Thanks, and we don't know why they don't do it, you're not the first one to ask, and it's not the first time we'll say we don't know... unfortunately, Valve seem to ignore all of this and concentrate on other third party mods. You should ask them directly.

 May 2, 2009 4:02 PM, Anonymous Hunter X said :
My guess is that Valve aren't replying because of the copyrighted music used - I know there were only you got rid of one, but I seem to remember there was one song you couldn't find a replacement for. I can understand why Valve wouldn't want to get involved with that, even if is just one song.

 May 2, 2009 4:04 PM, Anonymous Hunter X said :
My guess is that Valve aren't replying because of the copyrighted music used - I know there were only two and you got rid of one, but I seem to remember there was one song you couldn't find a replacement for. I can understand why Valve wouldn't want to get involved with that, even if is just one song.

(Fixed a mistake, whoops)

 May 2, 2009 5:14 PM, Blogger Nicolas said :
@Hunter X:
Well, if it was the case, we could easily work around this problem. Anyway, if we had to be released on steam one day, we'd also had to rework a lot of the mod to make it "triple A" compliant... so, that's not a big problem.

 May 29, 2009 6:10 PM, Anonymous server said :
That's such a great success! Congrats!

 June 2, 2009 4:31 PM, Anonymous Hill0 said :

Eh, I found the "warp zone" ingame. :)
Any1 else found it? :b

 June 3, 2009 6:09 PM, Anonymous Chell said :
It's too bad this mod sucks. Each level relies on threading a moving needle while looking through a moving mirror.

And that is fine if you're a fan-boy delux living in mum's basement. Thankfully I'm not.

Also, the voices. I'm guessing they must be split personalities of the same AI, Erik being the naughty one, and Mike being the one interested in puppies, nice butts, and cake. I can only guess, or look up spoilers, as I am not going to invest my time twitching my way through this tedious, read that, tedious piece of crap mod.

If Mike is actually human, then he is as insane as Erik (the AI?), and apparently every other staff member of Aperture Science as depicted through the windows must be equally insane.

If you guys had spent an 1/8 of the time on plot development that you spent on coming up with lame, barely possible to maneuver levels, then we might have seen some insanely hard/dangerous levels when only Erik was overseeing the test. No Mike, no visible human personnel, just Erik (with the same maniacal laughter, idiotic.)

On levels where Mike was present, or there are human spectators as perceived through the windows, the levels should be comparatively innocuous. In this way, you could have interspersed your insane levels with some actual worthwhile content.

I only reached level 9, then hit youtube up for the rest,

After visiting jokergeon's youtube walkthrough, I see your plot involves purportedly sane men murdering only women. (of course, the three of you being french this reflects an appropriate ethnic fear of women) This actually makes Glados less menacing by comparison, and so you are only succeeding in diminishing the original Portal.

Thankfully your storyline and general approach will never be adopted into the overall canon known as Portal and the aperture science story-line.

(though you guys clearly did a hell of a lot of effort, I won't say you wasted your time, just mine.)

 June 3, 2009 9:38 PM, Blogger Nicolas said :
Too bad you didn't get it. But I can't blame you for this. We can't please anyone, that wasn't our intention by the way. Sorry to hear this kind of review, which means you clearly bypassed the overall experience to concentrate your efforts in spitting non-sense about things you barely understood from someone who heard something from someone else.

 June 11, 2009 8:19 AM, Blogger nrnoble said :
On steam there were a few critical comments like Chells just above. I've been playing portal for about a year and I know I wouldn't have been able to get through several of Prelude chambers until recently.

So far I have made it through 18 of the 19 chambers. At no point during the game I have I been frustrated thinking that the design was bad or too difficult. Nothing wrong with have a good game design that is challenging.

As far as why Valve won't put it on steam, I can only speculate. One guess is that it is free. I love that it is available at no cost (or donation supported), but my guess is that Valve wants to limit "Free" content via Steam. There is likely to be presure or agreements between Valve and third party publishers not to turn Steam into a Shareware\Freeware Mod site. Every 13 year-old wannabe game developer would want their stuff on Steam

I would guess that Steam has a list of publishing requirements, and if you were to find that list\info, you would know what is required to get on Steam. There are Indie games on Steam and Free mods, so it is not like it is impossble. Contact some of those developers and find out how they got their game\mod published. Clearly you guys have put together high quality mod, so I would think you just need meet whatever requiements Steam has for publishing.

Overall, Nice mod! Thanks

 June 15, 2009 9:12 PM, Blogger Nicolas said :
Thanks to you, nrnoble.

 June 26, 2009 12:35 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said :
Hi ! I thought that was Portal First Slice so I didn't really pay attention but now I downloaded it and it's awesome. Great job :)

 February 7, 2010 2:56 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said :

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