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Portals provide organized visual access to articles.

Article portals

Article portals on Heroes Wiki are organized into four separate sections:

Portal Section Contains Included portals
The World of Heroes All articles related to Heroes episodes Characters, Episodes, Events, Groups, Lists, Places, Powers, Things, Timeline
The Heroes Graphic Novels All articles related solely to the Heroes online graphic novels Issues, Graphic Novel Characters, Graphic Novel Locations, Graphic Novel Places
About the show All behind-the-scenes and real-world articles Cast, Crew, Production, Recurring Themes, References, Speculation
Heroes Evolutions All articles solely related to the online Heroes Evolutions experience Evolutions Characters, Evolutions Locations, Evolutions Sites, Evolutions Other

Using and Searching for Portals

To use the portals to navigate articles, simply click the "Article portals" link on the Navigation sidebar. Click the text label or image for any article or portal to access that portal. Click the "Back" arrow to return to the previous portal. Click links on the portal navbar to jump from portal to portal, or section to section.

Besides trying to navigate to a particular portal from the "Article portals" link, it is possible to search through portals in other ways. One method is to use categories. It is standard for portals to correspond to the list of items or people specified in a certain category. Thus, if you know the category of an item or person you are searching for, it is possible to check if a portal exists by attempting to go to "Portal:<Category name>". It is also possible to navigate through a list of all portals at "Category:Portals".

Another method of finding a portal is to literally search for it using the "search" field and button. However, portals exist in the main namespace on Heroes Wiki. This means that to search for a portal, the "Main" checkbox must be checkmarked and in the search box it is required to put "Portal:" in front of what you are searching for, or to just put "Portal:" for a listing of all portals. When an article is listed in the main namespace in the format "<subject>:<article name>", said article is located in a "pseudonamespace". Thus, "Portal:", is considered a "pseudonamespace". It is a simulated namespace, one that does not really exist. For more info. about namespaces, check out the related Wikipedia article.

Editing Portals

Since portals are intended to provide a complete gateway to articles, it's important to add any new articles to the correct portal. Special:Newpages lists the newest articles, and can thus be used to find articles which have not yet been added to portals.

There are two primary "types" of portals: those which use portrait-oriented images (Cast, Crew, and Characters), and those which use landscape-oriented images (i.e. Events, Groups, and Things). Examples of what cells look like are below, along with links to examples for the standard method of adding new entries to both types of portals. Continue reading in this section for more detailed instructions.

Examples of the standard method of...
adding to a portal using portrait-oriented images
adding to a portal using landscape-oriented images

Adding a new cell

Portals which use portrait-oriented images use template:PortalCharacter. To link to an article, you will need a portrait-sized (200×250 pixels) image and the article title.

Most portals which use landscape-oriented images use template:PortalPlotPoints. For a list of landscape portals which use other templates, see "Other Portal Types". To link to an article, you will need a landscape-sized (450×350 pixels) image and the article title.

New cells should be placed alphabetically. Be careful to match the sort of other cells on the page; some pages include (and sort by) last name, and some do not.

Once you've located the correct spot for your cell, paste the appropriate code in as a new line:

for portrait portals:


for most landscape portals:


Fill in the variables. For image=, add the name of the image. Include the file extension, but do not include the Image namespace. For example, to use Image:Sylar.jpg, type image=Sylar.jpg. link= should be set to the name of the article. text= is an optional field; it overrides the way the link is displayed. It can be used to force a line break between first and last name, or to shorten an article title which is too long. For example, to display a link to "Angela Petrelli" on two lines, set text=Angela<br>Petrelli. nonlinktext= is another optional variable; it is used primarily to adjust the height of a cell. See "Adjusting Cell Size".

Adjusting cell layout

Next, it will be necessary to adjust the layout of the article to accommodate your new cell. Portals built with template:PortalCharacter should have five cells per row, while those built with template:PortalPlotPoints should have four. After four lines of {{PortalPlotPoints}} or five lines of {{PortalCharacter}}, insert a row break by typing |- on a line by itself.

If the last row has less than the full number of cells, close the table after the last complete row with |}. On a new line, open a new table with {| width=. The value for width= will vary based on the number of cells in the incomplete row:

Portrait portals Landscape portals
# of Cells width=
1 remove width=
2 30%
3 45%
4 60%
# of Cells width=
1 remove width=
2 38%
3 56%

If need be, move the incomplete row to after the {| width= line you just entered. Also, make sure the new table is closed by, if necessary, adding |} on a line by itself following the incomplete row. Note: there only needs to be one |} per table; if there is already a |} following the incomplete row (which there should be if you did not delete the one from the old table), then you should not add an extra one.

If the last row will have the full number of cells with a new addition, remove the {| and |} from before and after the last row, respectively, and move the last row back into the main table.

Some portals contain multiple pages of characters, such as Portal:Minor Characters. For these portals, you will need to adjust subsequent pages. See "Multi-Page Portals" for more on these portals.

Adjusting cell size

Finally, press "Show Preview" and verify that the cell layout is correct. The last step is to verify that all cells are the same height. If a few cells are taller than most others, you can try to shorten the name of the link by adjusting text=. If a few cells are shorter than others, you can add whitespace to them by adding a value for |nonlinktext=. Setting |nonlinktext=<br>&nbsp; will increase the height of a cell by one line. Each additional <br>&nbsp; will add another line of height.

Use "Show Preview" again to verify that all cells are aligned and sized the same. Once the portal looks complete, add an edit summary and press "Save Page".

Multi-Page Portals

Multi-page portals, such as Portal:Minor Characters, Portal:Guest Cast, or Portal:Issues allow very populous categories to be more easily navigated. In addition to being limited to five cells per row, pages of multi-page portrait portals are limited to three rows of cells per page, or a total of fifteen cells per page. Portal:Issues is limited to three rows of four cells, or twelve cells per page.

When you add a cell to one of these pages, the last cell on that page will need to be moved to the next page, becoming that page's first cell, and so on until each page contains no more than the maximum number of cells. If the final page has more than the maximum number of cells, you will need to add a new page. See "Adding New Portals".

You will also need to update the portal's subpage navigational template to reflect the new first and last cells on each page:

Portal... Uses...
Portal:Minor Characters Template:PortalCharNav
Portal:Guest Cast Template:GuestCastPortalNav
Portal:Issues Template:PortalGNIssuesNav

You will need to adjust image= and text= to reflect the new first and last cells. You may also need to adjust smalltext= if the alphabetical breakdown of a page changes.

Finally, if you added a new subpage, you will have to add a new cell to the subpage navigational template.

Other Portal Types

Some landscape-oriented portals do not use template:PortalPlotPoints because they require special formatting or produce special links.

Portal Type Template Special functions Additional variables
Episode portals Template:PortalEpisode Lists airdate, episode number
Widescreen image
airdate=, number=
Graphic Novel portals Template:PortalComic Lists featured character character=
Place portals Template:PortalPlaces Links to the place's world location location=
Portal:Powers Template:PortalPowers Autolinks to examples none

For more on each of these special portal types, click the template link above.

Adding New Portals

To add a new portal, either follow a red link to the portal page, or type the name of the portal you wish to create in the search box, press "Go", and click "create this page". You can press the "New portal" button to paste in the basic portal layout.

Portal pages consist of a table with cells which link to each article, any navigational elements, and a call to a "back" template

Portal Tables

Portal tables should be 75% wide and borderless. They should be centered on the page. The following code represents such a table:

{| width=75% border="0"
| Cell goes here

For each article, you will need to add a cell. Each cell begins with |. Each row of cells will appear between two |-.

Each cell will consist of a template call to one of the portal cell templates. For help with individual cells, see "Adding a new cell".

Portal Navigation Elements

Some portals contain navigational bars to other subportals of a parent portal, text links to related portals, or See Also sections of links to related portals. Any such navigation elements should appear after the portal's main table. They should be enclosed within <center> tags.

Whether or not a portal will require such elements varies from portal to portal:

  • If a portal has siblings (that is, other portals which are "children" of a portal's parent portal), it should have a portal navigation bar listing all of the sibling portals. For example, Portal:Main Characters uses Template:PortalCharNav.
  • If a portal has an analogue in a different set of portals, it should have a text link to that analogue. For example, Portal:Businesses contains a text link to the analogous portal Portal:GN Businesses (and vice-versa).
  • If there are articles closely related to a portal which are not of the same type as the articles in the table, a See Also section is appropriate. For example, Portal:Powers contains a See Also section of articles which are related to powers, but which are not articles about a single power. See Also sections should use template:Portalnavcell, a special portal template which produces a small portal cell.

Back Templates

Finally, each portal article should contain a "back" template particular to its associated top-level portal. The back template has the following effects:

  • Produces a "back" arrow which links to the portal's parent.
  • Produces a navbar for that portal's top-level portal section (The World of Heroes, The Heroes Graphic Novels, About the Show, or Heroes Evolutions)

The four Back templates are:

Portal Section Back template
The World of Heroes template:back
The Heroes Graphic Novels template:backGN
About the show template:backproduction
Heroes Evolutions template:backevolutions

For each of these, specify the portal's parent using parent=. Use text= to override the displayed link. For example, to link a portal to Portal:Powers and display the link as "Back to Powers", you would type {{back|parent=Portal:Powers|text=Powers}}.

A fifth back template, template:backmain, is used only on the top-level portal of each portal section and links back to Portal:Portals.

Because portals are often transcluded on Category pages, the back template should be enclosed in <noinclude> tags.


For a complete listing of Portal templates, see Category:Portal Elements. Each individual template contains usage information specifying how and where it can be used, as well as detailed instructions for using all of the available variables and reflexes.

There are four basic types of portal templates:

Type Purpose
Back Templates Produce backlinks
Portal Cells Produce individual cells
Portal Navbars Produce navigational elements
Top-level Portals Produce sections of Portal:Portals for each portal type section

Portal Cells in Other Pages

Several non-portal pages and navigational templates make use of portal cells to present visual access to content. Most notably, related articles pages provide portal-like access to articles related to a specific character, event, or organization.

Related Articles Pages

Related articles pages are built and maintained in a fashion similar to portals, with a few exceptions:

  1. Related articles pages list only the most pertinent articles related to a character, event, or organization. They do not need to be exhaustive. Extra text links for less important related articles can always be added to the page's See Also section
  2. Related articles pages are subdivided by type of article (Characters, Places, Elements, etc.)
  3. Related articles tend to have wider but fewer rows. Instead of a "panel" of cells, think of the page as a series of navigational "strips". Some general guidelines:
    1. No more than eight portrait cells per row.
    2. No more than four full-sized landscape cells per row. However, you can use the variable |width= with template:PortalPlotPoints to shrink landscape cells. At |width=110, you may fit up to six landscape cells in a row. For smaller cells, multiply the width used by the number of cells. If this number is less than 650, the row should fit at low screen resolutions.

The restrictions on the number of cells per row ensures that the row fits easily in the width of all user's browsers, even those viewing at a screen resolution as low as 1024x768 pixels

When using |width=, be careful with the cell captions. Cell captions will automatically shrink when width is less than 120 pixels. However, at cell widths below 100 pixels, it's easy for even short captions to overrun the cells. It's usually better to simply demote a link to the See Also section and leave a cell row with six or fewer cells.

Row widths on related articles pages

Full rows should be 80% wide on related articles pages. Incomplete rows should be as follows:

Portrait rows Landscape portals
(full size)
Landscape portals
(110 pixels)
# of Cells width=
1 remove width=
2 20%
3 30%
4 40%
5 50%
6 60%
7 70%
# of Cells width=
1 remove width=
2 40%
3 60%
# of Cells width=
1 remove width=
2 27%
3 40%
4 53%
5 67%

Navigational Elements

Some navigational elements, such as Template:Portalnav and Template:languagebar, also make use of portal cells. As with related articles pages, it's important to make sure a row of portal cells is not too wide to fit at lower screen resolutions. If you are unable to test at a lower screen resolution, try to make sure that the total width of your portal cells is less than 650. The following table lists cell widths for some common portal cell templates:

Template Cell Width Maximum cells per row
Template:PortalCharacter 75 pixels (60 pixels if |size=small) 8 (10 if |size=small)
Template:PortalPlotPoints 150 pixels (variable using |width=) 4 at default width
Template:Portalnavcell 80 pixels 8
Template:Portalnavcell2 80 pixels (variable using |width=) 8 at default width
Template:Portalnavcell3 90 pixels 7
Template:PortalLangBar 60 pixels 10