Portal 2 Wheatley Puppet Actually Talks, Moves

The Portal games have very few characters, yet every one of them manages to be amazingly memorable, especially the little Wheatley bot. A personality core, Wheatley is one of the characters new to Portal 2. Voiced charmingly by Stephen Merchant and endowed with a surprising amount of “body language” for a simple orb, Wheatley manages to quickly become a fan-favorite, as fun and amusing as GLaDOS was when we were first introduced to her in the original Portal.

Given that he has a more discernible appearance than the more heavy machinery that makes up GLaDOS, there have already been multiple projects undertaken to re-create him, such as these miniature Portal 2 personality spheres which feature Wheatley. Fan TRP-Chan, however, took things much further by making her own Wheatley puppet.

Portal 2 Wheatley Puppet

The puppet is remarkably realistic, with the “eye” the bright glowing blue that we see in the game. The shell that makes up his body looks accurate, including the handles, and also looks a bit worn and distressed as he appears in the game. Within the shell is what could be called his “face”, another spherical piece although this one is able to move around as one might move their head when speaking. Likewise, Wheatley’s eye has two shutters which can open and close to various extents, and this is where his real range of expressions shines. Controlled by the puppeteer, Wheatley’s face bobs around as he speaks, the eye shutters opening and closing partially to portray various emotions (and, simply, to blink), much like one might with their own eyes.

Wheatley Puppet Reading

Yes, I did say that he speaks, as the creator also gave this puppet the ability to repeat 10 different quotes from the game. Wheatley can therefore speak in his original voice while the puppeteer controls his movement, and you can see in the video that all the movements really match up with the dialogue. In fact, the only flaw I can pick out of this intricate project is that it occasionally squeaks audibly when moving. A minor nitpick, to be sure, and one which might even be easily remedied. If you want to try your own hands, the designer was kind enough to provide some step-by-step instructions on how she went about building her Wheatley puppet. If not, you can just busy yourself with looking at more Portal-related awesomeness like this Replica Portal Gun and this Space Core Cake.