Status: Preview, Findability: 3/5

Phil Nicolson was one of the heroes of the C64 with his last ditch efforts to bring new software to the C64 in the mid 90’s, as Commodore Format was walking slowly off into the sunset. Great titles such as Deadline and Tracer were created for Visualise Software, and he even took over the software company as Jon Wells moved onto his Supportware scheme.

On buying Deadline from Visualise all those years ago (A brilliant purchase at £3), I found an additional preview called “Portal”… A clone of the Simon Pick game “Revolution” from Power Pack 1.

Although in the early stages, with sprites ripped from Deadline for testing purposes, the game actually looked and played reasonably well. Could this have gone one better over “Revolution”?

Sadly, this was all that was ever seen of the game, even though a release was planned in the next few months. Phil moved away from the C64 scene, quite likely after poor sales, which many suffered with at the time.

Phil got in touch via Twitter in 2021, and explains that he took some magazine articles of his games and demos to show at a University interview. He was offered a place and never touched the C64 again after that. Portal essentially never progressed any further than the demo you see here.

This means that Portal is very much a case closed. This is it – so check it out for yourself to see what could have been.

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