Portal by Activision

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JoeNewberry
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Portal by Activision

Postby JoeNewberry » 09 Sep 2008, 03:13

I keep hearing people talking about Portal, and every time I hear that name it makes me think of the only Portal I know which is the interactive book/experience/game-like thing by Activision. I played it as part of the Commodore 64 15-pack that Activision released in the mid-90s for Windows.

You are an astronaut returned from a long space mission and you find Earth deserted. You land and log onto a computer, trying to find out what happened to everyone. A storytelling AI with a memory problem tries to piece together the story with your help. It's not really a game, but an interactive sci-fi novel. Has anyone else played this?
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empath
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Postby empath » 09 Sep 2008, 07:06

That DOES sound pretty familiar; I think I was looking through the history of gaming recently and read up a fair bit about this one. Never played it though.
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Nameless_1
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Postby Nameless_1 » 09 Sep 2008, 07:33

Again, another thing I think I remember. I may have played it once or twice, but nothing more. The L Game was my fave text adventure :D that or wonderland
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JoeNewberry
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Postby JoeNewberry » 09 Sep 2008, 21:52

It was meant to be part of a trilogy, but I guess sales weren't so great. The ending is worth getting to, but you can see where there was room to tell more. I've only played the Commodore 64 version, but I hear the Amiga one had mouse support and better graphics.

You basically move around a database reading bits of the main narrative and optional background information like you'd expect from an appendix. For instance the Homer AI would tell you a bit of the main narrative, mentioning a character and a place where that character is at. After you read that bit you could go to Life Support and see the last recorded physical stats of that person and go to Geography to see a map of the location described. History keeps a timeline of major events and has articles about specific world occurences. SciLink has articles on the technology in the story. Military has information on weapons. And so on. All you do is navigate around the screen reading, but it's presented in a neat way. I can recall playing it well into the wee hours of the morning and getting yelled at by my mom for it.

There's an online version of the novel reachable from here: http://web.archive.org/web/200211221948 ... todge.org/

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