Aperture Hand Lab
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Aperture Hand Lab is a non-canonical VR technical demo developed by Cloudhead Games ltd., in conjunction with Valve, to showcase the functionality of the latter's Index VR controllers and headset. The demo was released on Jun 25, 2019.
The game begins in some sort of an elevator going up or down, where an Announcer (different from the original Portal series, with a lower, more masculine tone of voice) greets the player to the Aperture Hand Lab. Then after a short time, the elevator door opens and the player arrives in the 42nd floor, then the player is instructed and given instructions to use the short teleport function. From here, the player is greeted by various Personality Cores equipped with their own complete arm-to-fingertip interactive component and different personalities (Nice, Vulgar, Deceptive, etc). They will teach the player how to understand and grasp the basic functions of the Valve Index Controller.
The first personality core the player will meet is Frank, a Nice, very masculine and polite programmed personality core. Frank will teach the player how to perform friendly gestures such as waving. Due to the unorthodox behaviour of Frank, this implies that Frank are not experienced with humans or have never seen humans before.
The next one is Alan, a very aggressive but untempered personality core. Alan will teach the player how to perform threatening hand gestures such as shaking a fist to the opponent, but that was a cover for "double fist shake".
Then, there is Frank again, but this is a deception performed by Deceptive Danny, by performing the classic "too slow" high five trick. Then, Danny challenges the player to playing a supposedly three round Rock, Paper, Scissors, but the Announcer realizes if the player is beaten three times, the player will lose so if the player failed two times before, Danny will fall prematurely.
After Danny, there is another personality core, though not identifying himself, he is a very solid and supporting personality core. Then he will ask the player to shake his hand, stating that the player is the "Vice President in Charge of Hands", after a handshake, he stated that was a too soft handshake and wanted a real handshake. This utilizes the Index's controller pressure function. The player then rips the right arm component entirely and broke the entire contraption apart and the player's platform, causing both to fall.
After the supposed test breaking action, the player is still alive and met Frank, but Frank has discovered a gun weirdly stored in the bottom of the old Aperture Science facility, then Frank threatens the player to free him and instructs the player to open a envelope. Inside the envelope, there is a key to operate a switch. Frank then realizes that pointing and threatening a "friend" with a gun is not nice, instead asking the player to use the switch. Unbeknownst to Frank, there are two options, the first being "Core Escape", and the second being "Destroy Core". Frank then apologizes to the player for pointing the gun at them. There are two endings:
- The player uses the key on "Free Core" option, this concludes the test, both the player and Frank are shocked to the occasion, then the Announcer plays the instrumental version of Still Alive and congratulate the player for discovering a meaning to "True Friendship".
After each test by an individual personality cores (except the last test), they will fall in a sort of pathetic way.
The game has many comedic voice lines and hand gestures, also with events that will happen when the player will switch personality cores.
- The number 42 is likely a reference to The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy
- Moondust - Another Portal themed virtual reality game.