Portal Stories: Mel has several easter eggs- usually hidden- around its maps.
LoneWolf2056[edit | edit source]
In multiple locations all across the story, the numbers ‘2056’ can be seen, most notably as AEGIS’ password in the final segment. These are all references to one of the lead developers, LoneWolf2056, and his full username is also hidden around the maps. This culminates in the locked-off lab 2056, which is enterable and grants an achievement upon doing so. One of the complete signatures can be found out of bounds in sp_a2_underbounce. Pictured with shadows removed here.
Developer Photos[edit | edit source]
Scattered around several abandoned offices are photo frames, each one with pictures of a real person. These are photos of the developers.
Half Life References[edit | edit source]
During the beginning train ride, it’s possible to catch a glimpse of a security guard knocking on a door, which is a reference to a similar event in Half Life: Blue Shift. This can be seen here. When you get off the train, an arrivals board lists City 17 as a destination, which is the setting of both episodes of Half Life 2. The sign is pictured here.
Borealis floats can be found early in the game. This is a reference to Half Life 2, in which the ship Borealis is featured in a recording at the beginning of the game. Portal 2 also references the Borealis with a life preserver, and Portal Stories: Mel uses the same model and texture. There is also a large poster referencing the Borealis in the room where Virgil is found. This poster is pictured here.
In the room where the lights are turned on to rescue Virgil, a framed photograph depicts Cave Johnson shaking hands with Dr. Breen, a recurring character in Half Life. Pictured here.
TARDIS[edit | edit source]
if you go out of bounds in the flaming junkyard, you can find a blue police box, which is a reference to the TARDIS from Doctor Who. Can be seen out of bounds to the left in Chapter 3, The Ascent, (sp_a3_junkyard). A photo of the TARDIS in the junkyard can be found here.
Goats[edit | edit source]
In many different places around the maps, stock, textureless models of goats can be found, most unaccessible without noclip. According to the developers, goats became a running gag during development, leading to the placement of the models for fun. One of these instances can be found in sp_a2_underbounce. Pictured, without shadows, here.
Goat Party[edit | edit source]
There was originally planned to be a group of goats having a tea party during Mel’s long elevator ride in the beginning of the game. However, according to LoneWolf2056, it was removed as they didn’t want the new models to cause technical issues. Pictured here. Note, NOT in the final mod.
Fifty Shades of Cave[edit | edit source]
In an inaccessible area of Old Aperture, a magazine rack displays a magazine with the headline ‘Fifty Shades of Cave’ over Cave Johnson’s face. This magazine is pictured here. This is a clear reference to the 2011 erotic romance novel Fifty Shades of Grey. The same magazine can also be seen inside of the entry lobby in Old Aperture.
Portal References[edit | edit source]
In one of the piles of rubble, you can find various pieces of debris. One is a Rocket Turret from the first Portal, which is a reference to the final fight with GLaDOS, it can be seen in a pile of rubble to the initial left of the entrance to chapter 3, The Ascent, (sp_a3_junkyard). It is pictured here . A calculator that can be picked up in an office will eventually show the equation ‘2 + 2 = 10’, another reference to GLaDOS’ final moments. The calculator is pictured here.
When encountering Virgil for the first time, if the player decides to try and pick him up several times without turning the lights on, he will get annoyed and say “Am I speaking in an accent that is beyond your range of hearing?” This is a reference to a similar line delivered by Wheatley in Portal 2.
A hidden Companion Cube can be easily seen in some debris after an overgrown testing chamber. Attempting to pick it up will immediately fizzle it. The companion cube, with shadows removed, can be seen here.
Hoopy the Hoop can be spotted in several locations throughout the game, each one accompanied by a disparaging line from Virgil, who doesn’t understand why “people (are) obsessed with a silly hoop”. One of these instances is in sp_a4_tb_over_goo through a broken window next to graffiti, pictured here.
In one of the office segments, a hidden radio can be found. When picked up, this radio will play an instrumental version of ‘Still Alive’ from Portal 2.
Rainbow Core[edit | edit source]
During one of the overgrown testing tracks, clever portaling can access a hidden room behind a wall. This room contains a small wall drawing of a group of Personality Cores floating on a rainbow, and the Rainbow Core himself.
Rainbow Poster[edit | edit source]
In a certain part of the Aperture offices, just outside of the area where you first find Virgil, you can find a rainbow poster. This is most likely a pride poster. Pictured here.
Drawings + Rattman’s Room[edit | edit source]
There are some drawings similar to Doug Rattman's art on walls in hidden areas. These pieces appear in various testing chambers and depict, amongst other things, AEGIS and Mel’s antique Portal Gun. A hidden room clearly based on the Rattman dens in Portal and Portal 2 can be found, hiding many of these drawings.
Citranium Soda[edit | edit source]
In the vending machines seen early on in the story, the list of available drinks includes Citranium. This is a reference to a slightly earlier Portal mod, Aperture Tag, which includes Citranium as a ‘sponsorship’ gag. Pictured here.
Star Trek[edit | edit source]
On the right wall of the room where cubes are tested to see if they can open doors, the number '74656' is visible. This, of course is a reference to Star Trek Voyager, being the USS Voyager's registry number: NCC-74656.