GLaDOS and Valve help a man propose to girlfriend via Portal 2

glados and valve help man propose to girlfriend via portal 2 proposalUsing video games to propose marriage is nothing new—in fact it is the natural extension of geekdom. They are still somewhat rare, but when done correctly they can quickly take on meme status and hurtle around the intertubes like a straw in a tornado. But a new high-water mark may have just been set, thanks to Gary Hudston, who used the critically acclaimed game (especially acclaimed by us) Portal 2 in order to propose to his girlfriend, Stephanie “Stephy” Harbeson. And he did so with the help of the game’s developers, Valve.

To celebrate Stephy’s 21st birthday, Hudston decided to pop the question. But the couple, who had been together for five years, had long since agreed that any marriage proposals needed to have a little something extra. Taking a bended knee on the beach simply wasn’t going to cut it, so Gary decided that he would commission a special user-designed mod level for Portal 2.

According to Yahoo Tech, Hudston repeatedly attempted to contact Valve, but received no response. He then managed to contact  Ellen McLain, the actress that lent her voice to the game’s pseudo-villain, GLaDOS. Once he explained the purpose of the project, she agreed to help.

“She was just lovely, and with her help we were able to contact Erik Wolpaw [one of Portal 2’s principle writers] who promised to try and fit in some time to record some dialogue for me,” Hudston said.

With Valve on his side, and the voice actress responsible for GLaDOS making a return appearance to speak his lines, Hudston then needed designers to help bring it all to life. To accomplish this, on July 19 he went to the forum Thinkingwithportals.com, and posted a request for help. His description was cryptic, but he explained that he needed help designing two very simple levels as well as a special final room.

glados and valve help man propose to girlfriend via portal 2 stephy gary

“I’m afraid that the nature of the project doesn’t allow me to go into any further detail on a public forum as it would entirely defeat the purpose of it all if anything were leaked,” he posted. “I’m aware that this might make this whole thing seem a little bit suspicious but I assure you that you will understand my reasons once I explain it in detail to you.”

More intriguing to the people on the forums than the mysterious nature of the request was the news that Hudston had the blessing of Valve, and that McLain would be reprising her role for the project. As anyone that has ever spent time on forums can attest, a random post without details can quickly lead to hijinx. But Hudston had proof, and he then soon had two volunteers: Douglas “TopHATTwaffle” Hoogland and Rachel “Miss Stabby” van der Meer, both well-known modders in the Portal circles. Six weeks later, the project was done.

With the easy part done—contacting an international company, scheduling a much sought after voice actress to reprise a critically loved (and legally protected) character and then seeking out top level talent to create an intricately designed level all for no pay—Hudston then settled into the difficult part of presenting the project to his girlfriend, Stephy. After opening her birthday presents, he then presented her with the level.

“She was confused at first, but played along as she knew I was clearly up to something. She tells me that it crossed her mind that it might be a proposal but she decided that she was getting ahead of herself and that it was probably just an elaborate birthday gift. That was until she realized that GLaDOS was talking directly to her.

“From that point on she was quiet, save for some muttered disbelief and, by the time GLaDOS was asking her the question, she was in tears. When she looked over to me I was already on one knee with the ring. Also in tears.”

The full run through can be seen below, and a cinematic version has also been released. The level itself is also available for download for those that want to feel the love, or perhaps for another gamer coincidentally named Gary Hudston who is also coincidentally looking to propose to a woman named Stephanie Harbeson. Granted, the odds of that are somewhat higher.

So congratulations to Gary and Stephy! The wedding is set for February, which gives people plenty of time to come up with their best “the cake is a lie” joke.  

Movies & TV

Stay inside this fall with the best shows on Hulu, including 'Castle Rock'

It's often overwhelming to navigate Hulu's robust library of TV shows. To help, we've put together a list of the best shows on Hulu, whether you're into frenetic cartoons, intelligent dramas, or anything in between.
Home Theater

The best movies on Netflix in November, from 'Buster Scruggs’ to ‘Dracula’

Save yourself from hours wasted scrolling through Netflix's massive library by checking out our picks for the streamer's best movies available right now, whether you're into explosive action, witty humor, or anything else.
Movies & TV

The best shows on Netflix, from 'The Haunting of Hill House’ to ‘The Good Place’

Looking for a new show to binge? Lucky for you, we've curated a list of the best shows on Netflix, whether you're a fan of outlandish anime, dramatic period pieces, or shows that leave you questioning what lies beyond.
Movies & TV

Winter coming in spring? HBO reveals 'Game of Thrones' season 8 premiere date

With the eighth and final season looming, Game of Thrones fever has officially become a pandemic. Our list of all the relevant news and rumors will help make the wait more bearable, if you don't mind spoilers.
Gaming

The best PS3 games of all time

Choosing the right PlayStation 3 game can be a conundrum, especially when there are nearly 1,500 titles to choose from. Thankfully, we've rounded up the best games to have ever made it to the platform.
Gaming

Here's where Xur is and what he has for wares this week in 'Destiny 2: Forsaken'

The weekly vendor in Destiny 2: Forsaken always brings Exotic weapons and armor, some of the toughest loot to find in the game. Here's everything you need to know to track down Xur: Where he is, when he shows up, and what he's stocking.
Gaming

‘Spyro Reignited Trilogy’ proves nostalgia only goes so far

Spyro Reignited Trilogy is a faithful and beatiful remaster of the PlayStation classics, but its dedication to retaining the original experience ultimately hinders the experience. Spyro was great in the late-'90s, but it hasn't aged well.
Gaming

Microsoft is reportedly planning an Xbox One without a disc drive for 2019

Microsoft is reportedly planning to release a new Xbox One model without a disc drive in 2019. The console will be significantly cheaper than other Xbox One systems, including the Xbox One S.
Gaming

15 tips for keeping your vault-dwellers alive in ‘Fallout Shelter’

The wasteland can be an unfriendly place, if you don't know what you're doing. Here are 15 tips that will help your vault thrive in Fallout Shelter, including information on questing.
Gaming

Stock up on Switch accessories this week with these awesome Black Friday deals

Black Friday is right around the corner, and it's the perfect time to stock up on accessories for your Nintendo Switch. Here are the best Switch accessory deals on Black Friday, from controllers to cases and more.
Product Review

Make friends. To survive the wasteland of 'Fallout 76,' you're gonna need 'em

Fallout 76 brings the nuclear wasteland online and invites you to hop in with your friends. It’s fun, and a new direction for the Fallout franchise, but it’s not without its faults.
Gaming

‘Final Fantasy VII Remake’ director sets record straight on game’s progress

Final Fantasy VII Remake director Tetsuya Nomura clarified some information about the game's progress. There were earlier reports that the RPG was put on hold in favor of Kingdom Hearts III, but that is apparently not the case.
Features

From NES to PlayStation, retro gaming is booming. But will it last?

Everyone craves the good old days, and companies like Nintendo and Sony are cashing in with their mini versions of beloved retro consoles. But is this fad built to last or will our fixation with pixelated graphics come and go like mom…
Gaming

‘Blockchain gaming’ startup gets $16 million in Series A funding

A gaming startup, Mythical Games, has raised $16 million in Series A funding to work on their concept of blockchain gaming. The aim is for the startup to develop games for the PC, console, and mobile markets.