Best Games Like Portal

If you're a big fan of the Portal games and you're looking for more similar games to play, then you'll love this list of all the best games like Portal.

Portal 1 and 2 are two of the best puzzle-platformers ever made and have influenced the creation of countless other games since their release.

Whether you’re a fan of the series’ room-by-room level design, increasing puzzle difficulty, or timeless writing, here we’ll be breaking down the best games like Portal to play in 2021.

This includes the best puzzle games like Portal and best co-op games like Portal on PC, PS4, Xbox One, and Nintendo Switch.   

If we forgot to mention your favorite game, sound off in the comments and let us know.

Lastly, make sure to check back in the future as we continue to update this list with new games!

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The PC modding community has an extensive history with creating fan-made mods for pretty much every game Valve puts out, especially Half-Life and Portal.

Many of these mods end up growing in scope and size until they’re practically their own game; such is the case with Portal Stories: Mel, a hefty free mod for Portal 2 that functions as a prequel.

Clocking in around eight hours, it adds a bunch of new puzzle challenges on par with Valve’s design quality, along with a new story set between Portal 1 and 2.

It’s perfect for fans that have already picked through everything the Portal games have to offer and are craving an experience that’s both new and canon.

The Talos Principle casts you as an android whose been called upon by their creator to solve a series of 120+ increasingly complex puzzles.

The game draws inspiration from other puzzle games such as Portal to create a sense of familiarity that’s further complemented by its philosophical narrative.

While Talos’s story isn’t as funny or cleverly written as Portal’s, you’re free to just focus on the puzzles themselves and ignore all the surrounding clues and mysteries.

A big part of what makes Portal’s puzzles so satisfying to solve is that they are all based on the same logic and set of rules. 

Antichamber is another game that uses its solid foundation as a jumping-off point for mind-stimulating logic and physics-based puzzles.

Instead of a portal gun, you have a color gun that allows you to pick up colored blocks and use them to manipulate the environment. 

Similar to Portal, most challenges require a fair amount of trial and error until everything suddenly clicks into place and you’re able to move on to the next room. 

The Turing Test is another first-person puzzle game that draws heavily from Portal 1 and 2 while telling an original story about a space engineer stationed on Europa.

Upon discovering her crewmates are in danger and can only be saved by completing a series of tests using a special tool, Ava sets out to do just that.

There’s a great deal of puzzle variety in this game, with Ava’s tool having the power to open doors, power machines, hack into security cameras, and issue commands to nearby drones. 

Across visuals, gameplay, and story, The Turing Test feels very reminiscent of the Portal series, and some of its plot twists are sure to surprise you.

While the original Q.U.B.E. shares many commonalities with Portal, its sequel builds upon the room-based puzzle formula while featuring more vibrant-looking environments.

In it, you play as an archaeologist who finds herself stranded in the ruins of an ancient alien civilization along with a distant survivor she’ll have to get to.

Gameplay sees you solving puzzles using mysteriously powerful gloves to move colored blocks and activate special switches.

Q.U.B.E. 2 features over 80 puzzles to solve throughout eight visually-diverse areas with labyrinth-like map layouts.

The Stanley Parable got its start as a mod for Half-Life 2 in 2011 before it was eventually spun off into its own thing.

Even though it may not have gameplay similar to Portal, both feature unconventional storytelling and very “meta” scripts that poke fun at the games themselves.

In it, you play as Stanley, an average office worker who suddenly decides to break his routine and investigate his coworkers’ disappearances.

There are 19 possible endings depending on the choices you make throughout the story, and each one is unique enough to warrant multiple playthroughs.

A large number of indie puzzle games found their footing in Portal’s narrative-driven shadow, including 2D indie Metroidvania The Swapper.

You play as an astronaut whose ship has run out of fuel and has to make an emergency landing in an abandoned research facility.

Related:Best Metroidvania Games 2021

Over time, mental fatigue and crippling loneliness take their toll on the astronaut as they encounter strange rocks with duplicating properties.

The puzzles you have to solve are just as hazardous and captivating as playing Portal, and each goes hand in hand with the game’s mysterious story.

Although The Witness is mainly modeled after classic adventure games like Myst, its first-person perspective, challenging puzzles, and intriguing story remind us of Portal as well.

In it, you play as a silent protagonist tasked with exploring a mysterious island divided into 11 regions, each with its own theme and puzzles to solve.

You take on puzzles room by room, unlocking new areas until eventually reaching the island’s peak, where the game’s most significant discovery awaits.

While there’s no portal gun or dimension-traveling to speak of, The Witness’s logic-based puzzles are sure to trip you up and get your brain working overtime.

If you find the cooperative aspect of Portal most interesting, Biped is another puzzle game worth checking out with a friend.

It sees you controlling adorable bipedal robots that can only move a single leg at a time; this leads to some fascinating puzzle designs down the road that require strategy and coordination.

Like Portal, challenges switch back and forth or sometimes even blend between physics-based and logic, and there’s also platforming elements as well.

As an added bonus, Biped’s levels feature coins that you and your teammate can collect and spend on cute hats for your robots.

The other co-op puzzle game we’ll be recommending is Ibb & Obb, an indie puzzle-platformer that sees two players controlling green and pink creatures named Ibb and Obb.

The world they inhabit is divided by a horizontal line that affects gravity’s behavior depending on where a character is standing.

As you can imagine, this leads to some exciting puzzle designs that will have you and your partner racking your heads to try and solve.

Similar to Portal, your characters can gain physically gain momentum and use that speed to overcome challenges and progress further.  

Youropa casts you as a small humanoid creature with suction cups for feet that allow you to walk on walls and ceilings with ease.

After your world becomes torn apart, it’s up to you to use your powers to bring it back together by traversing simple yet addictive 3D logic and physics puzzles.

Throughout the game, your character gains new abilities to help them explore new areas, solve riddles, and avoid enemies throughout the world.

Last but not least, Youropa features a built-in level editor that lets you design your puzzles and characters using over 450 building blocks.

Our next recommendation for Portal fans is the first-person puzzle-adventure game Obduction, developed by Cyan Inc., aka the creators of Myst and Riven.

You play as a silent protagonist who finds themselves in the ruins of an alien planet where remnants of human civilization have started to mysteriously appear.

Much like the Portal games, Obduction reveals its best secrets over time through exploration and puzzle-solving, all the while asking you to piece together its clues.

Although you won’t find any dimensional-breaking portal guns, there’s no shortage of cool sci-fi inspired gadgets, gizmos, and contraptions to mess around with.

Outer Wilds is a story-rich puzzle game in which you play as an astronaut trapped in a never-ending time loop that resets every 22 minutes.

As the newest recruit of Outer Wilds Ventures, you’re tasked with investigating nearby planets within your solar system.

Related:Best Space Games 2021

Each planet features its own unique ecosystem that introduces various puzzles and challenges you’ll have to get past.

Every obstacle you overcome brings you one step closer to unraveling your ancestor’s secrets and the reason behind the time loop. 

Another game that messes with your perception of 3D spaces in a similar way to Portal is Superliminal, a mind-bending first-person puzzler from indie developer Pillow Castle.

It features an assortment of physical puzzles based on the concept of forced perspective as well as some optical illusion trickery.

The driving gameplay mechanic entails picking up, rotating, and adjusting the position of different objects in order to change their size and discover new functions.

At the same time, you find yourself tugging away at narrative threads related to why you’re solving all these puzzles; is it all a dream, some weird therapy program, or something much more surreal?

If you enjoy solving puzzles that require you to consider multiple factors at once, then Manifold Garden’s mind-blowing “puzzle within a puzzle” design may appeal to you.

The game sees you navigating intricately-designed architectural wonders as you locate and drop colored boxes on corresponding switches.

From multiple dimensions to gravity-manipulating, this game has everything a Portal fan could want, minus the emphasis on storytelling.

Instead, Manifold Garden uses its environments to weave a visually-striking tale about the relationship between geometry and life in an enchanting world inspired by the works of M.C. Escher.

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Justin Fernandez
Justin Fernandez

As a fan of both indie and triple-A games, Justin finds joy in discovering and sharing hidden gems with other passionate gamers. In addition to reporting on the latest and greatest titles, he manages GamingScan’s social media channels.

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