Portal‘s Writers Had the Shortest Job Offer Ever


If only all of our job searches could be this easy.

If you’re reading this, there’s a good chance that you know that Chet Faliszek and Erik Wolpaw were the brainiacs behind the brilliantly dark humor in 2007’s celebrated Portal. You may also know that the duo got their start writing for now-dormant-yet-quite-beloved videogame site Old Man Murray. But how did the two get from Point A (Old Man Murray) to Point B (Valve)?

“Out of the blue, in 2004,” Faliszek told Eurogamer, “Gabe [Newell, Valve commander-in-chief] just emailed us and said, do you want to come work for Valve?” The job offer came in straight out of the blue, and Newell didn’t seem keen on elaborating. “Gabe’s initial email really was one line. We asked, can you explain more? ‘No. Just come out.'”

“I figured, what the hell,” said Wolpaw. “We were just like, we’ll just give it a shot and see what it’s like. Seven years later, it’s fine.” Considering that the Faliszek/Wolpaw duo has been credited with many highly-acclaimed titles other than Portal, such as Team Fortress 2, Left 4 Dead, Left 4 Dead 2 and the Half-Life 2 episodes, I think that “it’s fine” is a bit of an understatement, don’t you?

Faliszek also revealed why the Valve company profile lists him as “Mr. Awesome.” “The day of Half-Life: Episode 1,” explained Faliszek, “that’s where it came from. They were handing out recognition for Episode 1. No one knew what to say, so the first three or four people fumbled around. I just went up and I thanked myself for being awesome.”

“Then other people who didn’t know what to say just thanked me for being awesome.”

So there you have it, folks. If you want a one-line job offer from Gabe Newell himself, you just need to practice being super-awesome.


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