The worst Jesus-free review of Portal 2 you will ever read

Title The worst Jesus-free review of Portal 2 you will ever read
Author Tom Chick
Posted in Games
When May 9, 2011

If you're going to review Portal 2, that's cool with me if you don't bring up Jesus. Seriously, I'm totally okay with that. I reviewed Portal 2 here and I didn't once mention Jesus, or any other religious figure. It's a perfectly viable approach..

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Wonder what they'll think about that El Shaddai game

Wonder what they'll think about that El Shaddai game

Awesome post. I loved this line from the review: "Other than that, the game is relatively family friendly.

Tom, having experienced it both before and after my Portal 2 experience, I have to say that I love your Gameshark review byline. What a great way to include multiple meanings.

Am I missing something? Tom's byline at Gameshark only says "By: Tom Chick".
Or did you mean the deck?

As for the Christ Centered Gamer....I don't know how many practicing Christians you know, Tom, but it occurs to me that "facile morality" might be spot-on for the modern Christian. It's not about thoughtfulness, it's about a RuleBook.

Screaming hordes of enraged Jesus fanboi in 3...2...1...

Thanks for correcting me, Jason, and teaching me a new term. I didn't know quite what to call the thing I was referring to (deck or subhead, apparently), but the wikipedia article about bylines made it seem like that term was good enough. It's not.

I agree with your brief assessment of modern Christianity. That's why I'm not the least bit surprised at CCG's facile review of Portal 2. I'd really enjoy reading a thoughtful article about Portal 2 and Christianity, but most gamers, and most smart people, don't take Christianity seriously enough to bother -- way to go, modern Christians. What a shame.

Any particular reason you used a picture of a level from the original Portal for an article about Portal 2? Some kind of ironic sarcasm about how you expected one thing only to find another, or just being lazy?

It's probably some liberal plot to spread disinformation Kyle. I heard the original Portal was buried at sea...

Jason, I know enough Christians that I know better than to dismiss an entire religion as "facile morality".

Do I spy an end-game Portal 2 spoiler? And not a warning in sight?

Hey Tom, if you want to start the New Games Theocriticism you can count me in!

Yo guys, CCGR'er here, just coming to say that pointing out Jesus in Portal 2 is kinda like pointing out a peanut butter and jelly sandwich in a triathlon. Just something to think about.

Teglement, I would agree with your analogy if the triathlon was called The Annual Peanut Butter and Jelly Sandwich Triathlon. :) BTW, assuming by CCGRer, you mean Christ Centered Gamer in terms of the website, I hope those guys can take my comments in stride and aren't insulted by them.


I used to be one of this site's chief reviewers and a key player in its review evolution (believe it or not, it's come a long way). You might be surprised to know how much I agree with your criticisms. CCG's reviews are, sadly, a missed opportunity. It's the site's chief goal to one-up the ESRB in providing information to objectionable content-concerned parents. To that end, they are at least somewhat successful. Unfortunately, the reviews really do come off as IGN with an extra scoring system (words do not adequately express my contempt for applying numerical values to objectionable material, by the way... nor how hard I tried to change the review philosophy entirely to something both meaningful and interesting, but I digress).

You're right about uninteresting reviews that fall into the same traps as the majority of the mainstream press. It's the primary reason I left my post with the site. It really is a shame to see such potential wasted.

For what it's worth, I find your criticisms both fair and profitable.


Hey there. Cheryl, founder of CCG here. Sorry if our reviews have disappointed you. We try to review games from both a secular and a Christian standpoint and point out their strengths and moral downfalls. We don't think it's our job to tell readers what to play but let them know what's in a game and let them decide for themselves if they want to buy it or not. I personally have bought one too many games that had content that I was not comfortable playing. I understand that people have different beliefs and convictions and I respect that. I don't try to justify the games the we play by overlaying spiritual significance to them. It's a good way to blow off some steam but some games are definitely more family friendly than others. Thanks for checking out the site regardless.
God Bless!


And to that end, its purpose is legitimate and met. Didn't mean to say otherwise. I do, however, find a great deal of merit in the idea of philosophical approaches to reviewing, especially with concern for connections to Christianity.

Wow. Tom, I'm blown away by the incredibly powerful and devastatingly prejudicial verbal sideswipes at us Christians. Whoda thunkit?

True confession here--I'm not a gamer. Too busy with life. And I don't do evaluative numerics very well, either. But simulacrum? Man. Tom, you must be really intelligent. Thanks for pointing out some truly valuable criticisms of CGR while you buried us poor noodle-heads with some seriously big words. Actually, your review was really well written, and I appreciate that you cared enough to write it.

But your predisposition towards us Jesus followers probably would have given you other reasons to complain if you had found references to Jesus in Cheryl's review.

In my experience (and it has spanned several continents, languages and cultures), tarring whole groups with the same brush brings back bad memories of many iterations of people who played first-person shooter with millions of real people. For fun.

So do try to pick your targets well. One day, you'll meet up with the real Jesus, and I hope you'll be ready to meet the one who wrote the rules to this game.

@ Cardio -
What are you, new? It's a well known fact that Tom hates Christians as much as he hates Mass Effect2.