The character you play in Portal is never named throughout the game. I can see that it's a female by looking through a portal, but the game always skirts any information about the character (e.g. GlaDOS speaks to you, but cuts out the name by saying "Subject name here.") I understand that Valve did this because they want you, personally to become more immersed in the game, but I think having a compelling character with a great story makes a good game even better.

Who is she? What is her story?

  • 7
    Actually, part of what made the game compelling is the fact that a lot of things are a mystery to the player. Jul 15, 2010 at 0:28

1 Answer 1


She is Chell.

See here:

Although Chell's origins are unknown, she was most definitely among the people present during GLaDOS's activation in 200-, as GLaDOS locked down the facility after her activation, letting none escape, or be let in from the outside.

EDIT: Visiting aperturescience.com, you can learn that she is the daughter of Cave Johnson (CEO of Aperture Science) and that she was brought there on Bring Your Daughter To Work day.

  • 2
    @Cray it's an "anti gravity device" (I don't remember the exact name) -- it's what causes her not to break her legs when she falls from incredible heights
    – juan
    Mar 2, 2011 at 15:20
  • 4
    @Juan - they're called heel springs, if I recall correctly.
    – Steve V.
    Mar 2, 2011 at 16:13
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    Yep - heel springs. "What's wrong with your legs?" - GlaDOS
    – Rory Alsop
    Mar 18, 2011 at 21:30
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    @Cray They're a foot-based suit of armor for the portal device, developed after they discovered a reproducible human error problem that caused damage to the valuable equipment: laptopmemo.com/2011/04/12/…
    – Shadur
    Apr 27, 2011 at 12:55
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    I was under the impression that she was the adopted daughter of an Aperture Science employee, but not Cave Johnson specifically. He doesn't seem like the paternal type, anyway.
    – Merus
    Jan 31, 2012 at 0:16

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