The Player in One Sentance

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LucFrench

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Nov 10, 1998, 3:00:00 AM11/10/98
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I was looking over the compition games, and I noticed that many of them had two
styles of PC:

1. The player is only just beyond/below the characterization in ADVENT.
(Enlightenment, or Fifteen, for example.)

2. The Player can be summed up in one sentance. "[Player] is a detective hired
to search a house." "[Player] is a drug induced halicination." "[Player] is
both a cinimatic hero, and a viewer of the game as if it were a film."
"[Player] is a Bad Child." etc.

And then I thought about other games:

"[Player] is a spy." "[Player] is a millenial party goer." "[Player] is a
chicken." "[Player] is an American Tourist." "[Player] is a member of the
<spoier> family, and is looking for a map." "Player is a text adventurer."
"[Player] is <spoiler>."

[Can you guess which ones I'm refering to? One is a stinger, in that it doesn't
exist yet.]

What I wanted to rant about, anyway, is the lack of complete player
characterizations in games.

I mean, even a raw GURPS character sheet give more characterization then most
works of IF.

[Further digression: I'd sorta like to see a game based upon the premise of the
player (or the major NPC) being a "Weirdness Magnet".]

What I'd like to know, is this this a bad thing?

Thanks
Luc "Annoyed" French

Andrew Plotkin

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Nov 10, 1998, 3:00:00 AM11/10/98
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LucFrench (lucf...@aol.com) wrote:

> And then I thought about other games:
>
> "[Player] is a spy." "[Player] is a millenial party goer." "[Player] is a
> chicken." "[Player] is an American Tourist." "[Player] is a member of the
> <spoier> family, and is looking for a map." "Player is a text adventurer."
> "[Player] is <spoiler>."

I think you're both overgeneralizing and asking the wrong question in the
first place, but I'll make one comment:

Not everyone agrees on who the protagonist of _Spider And Web_ is.

--Z

--

"And Aholibamah bare Jeush, and Jaalam, and Korah: these were the
borogoves..."

Magnus Olsson

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Nov 10, 1998, 3:00:00 AM11/10/98
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In article <erkyrathF...@netcom.com>,

Andrew Plotkin <erky...@netcom.com> wrote:
>LucFrench (lucf...@aol.com) wrote:
>
>> And then I thought about other games:
>>
>> "[Player] is a spy." "[Player] is a millenial party goer." "[Player] is a
>> chicken." "[Player] is an American Tourist." "[Player] is a member of the
>> <spoier> family, and is looking for a map." "Player is a text adventurer."
>> "[Player] is <spoiler>."
>
>I think you're both overgeneralizing and asking the wrong question in the
>first place

I agree with Zarf here. And where I think Luc goes wrong is when going
from the interesting observation that in many games the PC can be
summarized in one sentence, to the conclusion that a character that
can be summarized in one sentence necessarily has no more depth than
that.

Besides, Luc seems to be emulating Procrustes here, stretching or
chopping up his victims to make them the right size for his
theory. For example, saying that the protagonist of "Curses" is a
"member of the Meldrew family, looking for a map" is true, but does it
really convey all the information about the PC that's contained in the
game? It's a bit like saying that Hamlet is an indecisive prince whose
father has been murdered.

But maybe *we*, in criticizing Luc, are asking the wrong question.
Luc, do you mean that you'd like to see IF games where the PC is
defined by a character sheet (with a long list of various attributes
and abilities)?

The problem with this is that I can't see how this would fit into
the standard IF paradigm. It works in CRPG's, but those games work
in a totally different way.

--
Magnus Olsson (m...@df.lth.se, zeb...@pobox.com)
------ http://www.pobox.com/~zebulon ------

Matthew T. Russotto

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Nov 10, 1998, 3:00:00 AM11/10/98
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In article <erkyrathF...@netcom.com>,
Andrew Plotkin <erky...@netcom.com> wrote:
}LucFrench (lucf...@aol.com) wrote:
}
}> And then I thought about other games:
}>
}> "[Player] is a spy." "[Player] is a millenial party goer." "[Player] is a
}> chicken." "[Player] is an American Tourist." "[Player] is a member of the
}> <spoier> family, and is looking for a map." "Player is a text adventurer."
}> "[Player] is <spoiler>."
}
}I think you're both overgeneralizing and asking the wrong question in the
}first place, but I'll make one comment:
}
}Not everyone agrees on who the protagonist of _Spider And Web_ is.

The Union of Game Players Against Ambiguity does, and no one else is
talking.

--
Matthew T. Russotto russ...@pond.com
"Extremism in defense of liberty is no vice, and moderation in pursuit
of justice is no virtue."

Aris Katsaris

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Nov 10, 1998, 3:00:00 AM11/10/98
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LucFrench wrote in message <19981109233037...@ng-fq1.aol.com>...

>What I wanted to rant about, anyway, is the lack of complete player
>characterizations in games.
>
>I mean, even a raw GURPS character sheet give more characterization then
most
>works of IF.


'Most'. At least one game in this year's competition has an excellently
defined character, and very good supporting ones. Another revolves around
another excellent character which however isn't the PC.

And if I ever finish the game I've just started writing, it will have a
fully defined character as well.

>What I'd like to know, is this this a bad thing?


In part. Fiction's quality is often judged through the depth of its
characters. Shallow characters almost always means bad fiction. If you want
interactive fiction rather than an adventure game, well defined characters
are a definite plus.

The problem is that characterisations are built through the way one responds
to circumstances. Since the player is in control, often the game either has
to continuously limit the possible courses of action or limit the
characterisation. There are ways around this of course, but since I'm
experimenting on them myself I won't say more.

Mary K. Kuhner

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Nov 10, 1998, 3:00:00 AM11/10/98
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In article <729vv8$6o1$1...@ns1.otenet.gr>,
Aris Katsaris <kats...@otenet.gr> wrote:

>In part. Fiction's quality is often judged through the depth of its
>characters. Shallow characters almost always means bad fiction. If you want
>interactive fiction rather than an adventure game, well defined characters
>are a definite plus.

Alternatively, you might hold that in interactive media (IF,
roleplaying) the process of developing the character is a collaboration
between player and game, and the part that you see when you examine
the game text may not be the most important part. This was certainly
my experience of _Spider and Web_. The protagonist's personality was
developed by his actions, provided in large part by me, as well as
by the text describing his reactions in the game. (For example, at one
point my PC stopped to check if a wounded foe was still breathing,
rather than leaving at once: this is not encoded into the game, but
it's certainly characterization.)

Looking at the games which *do* have strongly characterized PCs
(Christminster, Madame L'Estrange, The Lost Spellmaker, Muse, among
others) I personally find myself torn between thinking "neat, a more
fully described character" and "gosh, this feels kind of cold and
distant compared to the other games."

Mary Kuhner mkku...@genetics.washington.edu

Kyle Pierce

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Nov 10, 1998, 3:00:00 AM11/10/98
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Aris Katsaris wrote in message <729vv8$6o1$1...@ns1.otenet.gr>...
>
>... Fiction's quality is often judged through the depth of its

>characters. Shallow characters almost always means bad fiction. If you want
>interactive fiction rather than an adventure game, well defined characters
>are a definite plus.
>
This distinction is growing larger for me, ever since I got re-acquainted
recently with the state of things in interactive fiction. My quick take on
this is that adventure gaming devotes more attention to the action (like,
what can it throw at you, the player), while IF focuses more on plot and/or
character. But even in IF, as it stands today, the action component tends
to be the most highly developed. Is it not what we know how to do best, and
basically what IF has evolved from -- that is, our heritage? (Is this BS or
no? I'm actually trying to be insightful, believe it or not :-)

>The problem is that characterisations are built through the way one
responds
>to circumstances. Since the player is in control, often the game either has
>to continuously limit the possible courses of action or limit the
>characterisation.

It is true that characterisations must communicated to the player through
It seems to me that another problem is also important: It is true


>There are ways around this of course, but since I'm
>experimenting on them myself I won't say more.


How intriguing!

Aris Katsaris

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Nov 10, 1998, 3:00:00 AM11/10/98
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Kyle Pierce wrote in message <51122.1961$b47....@news.cwix.com>...

>Aris Katsaris wrote in message <729vv8$6o1$1...@ns1.otenet.gr>...
>
>This distinction is growing larger for me, ever since I got re-acquainted
>recently with the state of things in interactive fiction. My quick take on
>this is that adventure gaming devotes more attention to the action (like,
>what can it throw at you, the player), while IF focuses more on plot and/or
>character. But even in IF, as it stands today, the action component tends
>to be the most highly developed. Is it not what we know how to do best,
and
>basically what IF has evolved from -- that is, our heritage? (Is this BS
or
>no? I'm actually trying to be insightful, believe it or not :-)


Puzzles have been developing for many years. Characterisation and story in
IF, only
the last few.

I was glad to see in this year's competition many good IF stories that focus
on the plot
and the characters, rather than the puzzles.

And one single magnificent game that though almost puzzleless managed to
drive a dagger through my heart.

>>The problem is that characterisations are built through the way one
>responds
>>to circumstances. Since the player is in control, often the game either
has
>>to continuously limit the possible courses of action or limit the
>>characterisation.
>
>It is true that characterisations must communicated to the player through
>It seems to me that another problem is also important: It is true
>


Your message didn't get through. Could you repeat this part, perhaps?

>>There are ways around this of course, but since I'm
>>experimenting on them myself I won't say more.
>
>How intriguing!


Eh... This is embarrassing. I didn't mean it to be intriguing, I meant to
say that I don't
know what works or not, and since I'm still trying to find things out, I
don't want to say
anything that may be simplistic or incorrect.


Kyle Pierce

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Nov 10, 1998, 3:00:00 AM11/10/98
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>I was glad to see in this year's competition many good IF stories that
focus
>on the plot
>and the characters, rather than the puzzles.
>
>And one single magnificent game that though almost puzzleless managed to
>drive a dagger through my heart.
>

I would be interested to know what game that might be.

I didn't mean to embarrass. Perhaps you are doing something that will turn
out to be intriguing after all :-)

Kyle


Kyle Pierce

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Nov 10, 1998, 3:00:00 AM11/10/98
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TenthStone

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Nov 10, 1998, 3:00:00 AM11/10/98
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"Kyle Pierce" <kyle....@mci.com> caused this to appear in our
collective minds on Tue, 10 Nov 1998 14:36:01 -0700:

Incidently, I'm certainly glad you reposted this to get in the extra two
blank lines.

I think Detective qualifies as puzzleless IF, and it certainly caused many
a stake to pierce a heart.

-----------

The imperturbable TenthStone
tenth...@hotmail.com mcc...@erols.com mcc...@gsgis.k12.va.us

Roger Carbol

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Nov 10, 1998, 3:00:00 AM11/10/98
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LucFrench wrote:

> 2. The Player can be summed up in one sentance. "[Player] is a detective hired
> to search a house." "[Player] is a drug induced halicination." "[Player] is
> both a cinimatic hero, and a viewer of the game as if it were a film."
> "[Player] is a Bad Child." etc.

> What I wanted to rant about, anyway, is the lack of complete player
> characterizations in games.


This is different from "real" literature how?


"[Player] is a melancholy Dane who is paralyzed by indecision."
"[Player] is a sea captain obsessed with a particular whale."
"[Player] is the Son of God, come to save humanity."


.. Roger Carbol .. r...@shaw.wave.ca .. in summary

Doeadeer3

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Nov 10, 1998, 3:00:00 AM11/10/98
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In article <72a0tc$1dq2$1...@nntp3.u.washington.edu>,

>Looking at the games which *do* have strongly characterized PCs
>(Christminster, Madame L'Estrange, The Lost Spellmaker, Muse, among
>others) I personally find myself torn between thinking "neat, a more
>fully described character" and "gosh, this feels kind of cold and
>distant compared to the other games."

Agreed. I like it and don't like it.

When the character of the PC is more defined, it is automatically less *ME*, so
I end up standing outside of the PC looking at it more than BEING it.

>Alternatively, you might hold that in interactive media (IF,
>roleplaying) the process of developing the character is a collaboration
>between player and game,

Very well put. A good protagonist...

>From: m...@bartlet.df.lth.se (Magnus Olsson)
>Date: 10 Nov 1998 15:14:14 +0100

>For example, saying that the protagonist of "Curses" is a
>"member of the Meldrew family, looking for a map" is true, but does it
>really convey all the information about the PC that's contained in the
>game? It's a bit like saying that Hamlet is an indecisive prince whose
>father has been murdered.

like the one in Curses, is developed over the course of the game, partly based
on the real-life player's choices and actions. Just like in novels, the
protagonist EVOLVES as the plot does.

I especially like that when the PC is me (or could possibly be me), because I
like evolving. It's the emotional score (v.s. the point score), which is more
rewarding.

Doe :-)


Doe doea...@aol.com (formerly known as FemaleDeer)
****************************************************************************
"In all matters of opinion, our adversaries are insane." Mark Twain

edr...@concentric.net

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Nov 10, 1998, 3:00:00 AM11/10/98
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Andrew Plotkin wrote in message ...

>LucFrench (lucf...@aol.com) wrote:
>
>> And then I thought about other games:
>>
>> "[Player] is a spy." "[Player] is a millenial party goer." "[Player] is a
>> chicken." "[Player] is an American Tourist." "[Player] is a member of the
>> <spoier> family, and is looking for a map." "Player is a text
adventurer."
>> "[Player] is <spoiler>."
>
>I think you're both overgeneralizing and asking the wrong question in the
>first place, but I'll make one comment:
>
>Not everyone agrees on who the protagonist of _Spider And Web_ is.
>


If Plotkin gets to plug his game, I get to plug mine:

I can easily stretch the characterization of Anchorhead's protagonist out to
more than one sentence, and I don't even have to reference her husband to do
it.

--M
================================================
"If you don't eat your meat, you can't have any pudding.
How can you have any pudding if you don't eat your meat?"

Stacy the Procrastinating

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Nov 10, 1998, 3:00:00 AM11/10/98
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On 10 Nov 1998, Mary K. Kuhner wrote:

>
> Alternatively, you might hold that in interactive media (IF,
> roleplaying) the process of developing the character is a collaboration

> between player and game, and the part that you see when you examine
> the game text may not be the most important part. This was certainly
> my experience of _Spider and Web_. The protagonist's personality was
> developed by his actions, provided in large part by me, as well as
> by the text describing his reactions in the game.


I agree on this one - part of the fun of IF is in imagining yourself as
the PC (for me, at least, and I suspect that's true for the majority of
players). In most cases, I woudn't want an extremely
fleshed-out PC. Well-developed NPCs, on the other hand, generally help
things, but are not a trivial thing to design and code. I suspect its the
technical barriers to implementation, rather than the authors' creativity,
that create the current scarcity (though not absence) of elaborate NPCs.


Stacy the Procrastinating

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Nov 10, 1998, 3:00:00 AM11/10/98
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On Tue, 10 Nov 1998, Andrew Plotkin wrote:

> Not everyone agrees on who the protagonist of _Spider And Web_ is.

Arrrugh! See, it's comments like these that drive me back to my IF
collection and prevent my ever getting any homework accomplished...I
sincerely hope that, if nothing else, Zarf leaves us a deathbed
explanation of all his "deliberate" loose ends ;)

-stacy (who still wants to know why magnets hang on the damned wooden wall
in S&W)


Weird Beard

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Nov 10, 1998, 3:00:00 AM11/10/98
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LucFrench wrote in message <19981109233037...@ng-fq1.aol.com>...
>I was looking over the compition games, and I noticed that many of them had
two
>styles of PC:
>
>1. The player is only just beyond/below the characterization in ADVENT.
>(Enlightenment, or Fifteen, for example.)
>
>2. The Player can be summed up in one sentance. "[Player] is a detective
hired
>to search a house." "[Player] is a drug induced halicination." "[Player] is
>both a cinimatic hero, and a viewer of the game as if it were a film."
>"[Player] is a Bad Child." etc.

You forgot one. Player is a troll.

Aris Katsaris

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Nov 11, 1998, 3:00:00 AM11/11/98
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TenthStone wrote in message <3648b51e...@news.erols.com>...

>"Kyle Pierce" <kyle....@mci.com> caused this to appear in our
>collective minds on Tue, 10 Nov 1998 14:36:01 -0700:
>>>
>>>And one single magnificent game that though almost puzzleless managed to
>>>drive a dagger through my heart.
>>
>>I would be interested to know what game that might be.


I'll reply by email, so as not to influence the judges.

>I think Detective qualifies as puzzleless IF, and it certainly caused many
>a stake to pierce a heart.


Agreed. Oh, so agreed.

LucFrench

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Nov 11, 1998, 3:00:00 AM11/11/98
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Weird Beard wrote:
>You forgot one. Player is a troll.

Oh, come now, WB. If I were trolling, I'd rant about how I like PC who are
cleanly established and developed. Zhfr, for example. And how much I dislike
poorly thought out or minimalist characters (Rivy, for example, or Qvyyl;
although I must admit Svsgrra had an interesting twist on the Nqirg/Pbzvat Ubzr
tradition of minimalist player characterization.)

And I'd spoil everybody in the newsgroup by explaining the plot of compition
games, as well as the games I've discussed with Doe, and the game I'm alpha
testing. (J, I'm still waiting...) I'd also make predictions about how the
results would come out, based upon my viewing of the games.

I suppose it boils down to names. I like to be able to place a name on the
character I'm playing. Not nessisarily a gender; I don't mind if the character
is largely undifined; I do like PCs who are named. (Although, again, I admit
Rqvsvpr had a nice twist on this.) It makes figuring out the character, and hir
relation to the world, much easier.

My main defence against the charge of trolling is that I try to post in the
vein of creating discussion. Not flames; talk to Kibo about trolling for
flames. He can talk at length about the matter (and I think that the Turkey guy
or Archy Plutonium would be a nice net.legends discussion, and that the
net.legends FAQ in general is a great place to dig for ideas, but I digress).

Well, the voices in my head are snoring now, so I suppose I should go to bed.

Thanks
Luc "Rantish" French
[PS. All games are ROT13ed (done manually, so forgive me if I missed a letter
or six) to prevent spoilage. A simple table to help you figure out what the
games are follows:
ABCDEFGHIJKLM
NOPQRSTUVWXYZ
What can I say? "I'm nuts"?]

Magnus Olsson

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Nov 11, 1998, 3:00:00 AM11/11/98
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In article <19981111030653...@ng-fq1.aol.com>,

LucFrench <lucf...@aol.com> wrote:
>Weird Beard wrote:
>>You forgot one. Player is a troll.
>
>Oh, come now, WB. If I were trolling, I'd rant about how I like PC who are
>cleanly established and developed.

I'm not sure, but Weird Beard may be referring to the game where the
player character actually *is* a troll: "Zork - a Troll's Eye's View".

>My main defence against the charge of trolling is that I try to post in the
>vein of creating discussion.

Well, there's trolling and trolling. Trolling for flames is a
despicable practice by psycho sickos who thrive on hurting other
people. Trolling by throwing out a controversial statement to
stimulate discussion is a different thing. (For the record, I don't
like the practice of claiming a controversial view that you don't
really hold, just to provoke people into reacting, but that's just me,
I know several people who like to do that in face-to-face
conversations and they're nice people anyway).

Weird Beard

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Nov 11, 1998, 3:00:00 AM11/11/98
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Magnus Olsson wrote in message <72bi3u$1bs$1...@bartlet.df.lth.se>...

>In article <19981111030653...@ng-fq1.aol.com>,
>LucFrench <lucf...@aol.com> wrote:
>>Weird Beard wrote:
>>>You forgot one. Player is a troll.
>>
>>Oh, come now, WB. If I were trolling, I'd rant about how I like PC who are
>>cleanly established and developed.
>
>I'm not sure, but Weird Beard may be referring to the game where the
>player character actually *is* a troll: "Zork - a Troll's Eye's View".
>
Well, of course I was.

L. Ross Raszewski

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Nov 11, 1998, 3:00:00 AM11/11/98
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In article <19981110183554...@ngol05.aol.com>,

doea...@aol.com (Doeadeer3) wrote:
>
> Agreed. I like it and don't like it.
>
> When the character of the PC is more defined, it is automatically less *ME*,
so
> I end up standing outside of the PC looking at it more than BEING it.
>

Which is something I do like. Whenever a game tries to tell me that I "am"
the protagonist, I tend to think "oh no I'm not", because I know that (1)
stuff like this has never happened to me and (2) probably won't, and it's
practically a cert that (3) to finish this game, I'll have to do things that
I personally wouldn't do, not to mention (4) This game is just a game -- text
on a screen. It's not real, and the reality it simultates is still always
going to be less real than the reality of me sitting at my keyboard in my
room (especiallt as my roommate walking in and striking up a conversation
with me will NEVER alter the state of the game world.) Finally, (5) I don't
really go around saying TEACHER, HELLO and moving in only cardinal directions
So, since I know that the character ISN'T me, the best thing is to have a
character there I can empathize with

(Your mimesis may vary)

-----------== Posted via Deja News, The Discussion Network ==----------
http://www.dejanews.com/ Search, Read, Discuss, or Start Your Own

Mark J. Tilford

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Nov 11, 1998, 3:00:00 AM11/11/98
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Well, I've seen magnets stick to concrete (there are steel bars in the
concrete, though); maybe there's some metal backing.

--
-----------------------
Mark Jeffrey Tilford
til...@cco.caltech.edu

Doeadeer3

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Nov 11, 1998, 3:00:00 AM11/11/98
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In article <72cap4$pa1$1...@nnrp1.dejanews.com>, L. Ross Raszewski
<rras...@hotmail.com> writes:

>Which is something I do like. Whenever a game tries to tell me that I "am"
>the protagonist, I tend to think "oh no I'm not", because I know that (1)
>stuff like this has never happened to me and (2) probably won't, and it's
>practically a cert that (3) to finish this game, I'll have to do things that
>I personally wouldn't do, not to mention (4) This game is just a game -- text
>on a screen.

(1), (2) Which is exactly why I like to imagine myself as the PC, really "put
myself" into the character, to have adventures I would never have otherwise.

(3) Bothers me a little, I don't like to have to commit violence, because I
normally wouldn't, so I like to have other options or have the violence be
minimal. But it is also why I can't play games with male-oriented sex, I feel
sorry for the females in the game (being just sexual objects, I sympathize with
them, not the male PC).

(4) Well, literature is just literature and film is just film, but with a good
book or movie, I can really get "into" their characters as well (books easier
than movies, of course.).

>(Your mimesis may vary)

It certainly does.

Matthew T. Russotto

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Nov 11, 1998, 3:00:00 AM11/11/98
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In article <Pine.SOL.3.96.981110223205.29902F-100000@eclipse>,

Stacy the Procrastinating <sc...@barnard.columbia.edu> wrote:
}On Tue, 10 Nov 1998, Andrew Plotkin wrote:
}
}> Not everyone agrees on who the protagonist of _Spider And Web_ is.
}
}Arrrugh! See, it's comments like these that drive me back to my IF
}collection and prevent my ever getting any homework accomplished...I
}sincerely hope that, if nothing else, Zarf leaves us a deathbed
}explanation of all his "deliberate" loose ends ;)
}
}-stacy (who still wants to know why magnets hang on the damned wooden wall
}in S&W)

Metal wall, wood paneling.

Stacy the Procrastinating

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Nov 11, 1998, 3:00:00 AM11/11/98
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On Wed, 11 Nov 1998, Matthew T. Russotto wrote:

> }-stacy (who still wants to know why magnets hang on the damned wooden wall
> }in S&W)
>
> Metal wall, wood paneling.

I did grasp that part ;) I meant I want to know what the significance is.

- Stacy


Matthew T. Russotto

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Nov 11, 1998, 3:00:00 AM11/11/98
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In article <Pine.SOL.3.96.981111155139.17732A-100000@eclipse>,

Stacy the Procrastinating <sc...@barnard.columbia.edu> wrote:

Ahh. Well when you're reading Zarf's mind, try and get the meaning of
"So Far" out of him.

Personally I suspect he did the magnets with metal walls, then changed
the walls to wood and forgot about them, so there's no significance.
(unfortunately he's far too subtle to fall for such obvious provocation)

Then there's the other explanation -- as a spy, you weren't there for
the obvious technology. That was just a bonus. You were actually in
INDUSTRIAL espionage, looking for the new wood-adhering magnets.

Andrew Plotkin

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Nov 11, 1998, 3:00:00 AM11/11/98
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Matthew T. Russotto (russ...@wanda.vf.pond.com) wrote:

> Ahh. Well when you're reading Zarf's mind, try and get the meaning of
> "So Far" out of him.

> Personally I suspect he did the magnets with metal walls, then changed
> the walls to wood and forgot about them, so there's no significance.

Nope -- it was, if I may be forgiven for repeating myself, deliberate.

> (unfortunately he's far too subtle to fall for such obvious provocation)

Yup.

> Then there's the other explanation -- as a spy, you weren't there for
> the obvious technology. That was just a bonus. You were actually in
> INDUSTRIAL espionage, looking for the new wood-adhering magnets.

Wasn't there a wood magnet in some Scooby-Doo episode? Used to steal the
Mona Lisa? Or was that the Superfriends?

--Z

--

"And Aholibamah bare Jeush, and Jaalam, and Korah: these were the
borogoves..."

Adam J. Thornton

unread,
Nov 11, 1998, 3:00:00 AM11/11/98
to
In article <72cap4$pa1$1...@nnrp1.dejanews.com>,
L. Ross Raszewski <rras...@hotmail.com> wrote:
>(Your mimesis may vary)

Especially if it's variegated.

Adam
--
ad...@princeton.edu
"There's a border to somewhere waiting, and a tank full of time." - J. Steinman

Ben

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Nov 12, 1998, 3:00:00 AM11/12/98
to
In article <19981111131814...@ngol07.aol.com>,

doea...@aol.com (Doeadeer3) wrote:
> minimal. But it is also why I can't play games with male-oriented sex, I feel
> sorry for the females in the game (being just sexual objects, I
sympathize with
> them, not the male PC).


The two don't seem mutually exclusive to me - are they? It would seem a
good writer could write male-oriented sex IF which doesn't portray females
as "objects". You are saying it is impossible to write male-oriented sex
without objectifying women? I disagree. You are generalizing too much
here.

All it needs is a good writer. :)

-Ben

--
bhi...@san.rr.com
http://members.tripod.com/~tunnels/

Jonadab the Unsightly One

unread,
Nov 12, 1998, 3:00:00 AM11/12/98
to
lucf...@aol.com (LucFrench) wrote:

> My main defence against the charge of trolling is that I try to post in the

> vein of creating discussion. Not flames; talk to Kibo about trolling for
> flames. He can talk at length about the matter (and I think that the Turkey guy
> or Archy Plutonium would be a nice net.legends discussion, and that the
> net.legends FAQ in general is a great place to dig for ideas, but I digress).

Heh. Personally I'd like to incarcerate everybody who reposts
unabashed web-page plugs every two weeks in
alt.binaries.sounds.midi.classical, as well as the idiot who
crossposts to the wine and kool-aid and AA groups about
political scandals.

- jonadab

Jonadab the Unsightly One

unread,
Nov 12, 1998, 3:00:00 AM11/12/98
to
"Weird Beard" <weird...@prodigy.net> wrote:

> >I'm not sure, but Weird Beard may be referring to the game where the
> >player character actually *is* a troll: "Zork - a Troll's Eye's View".
> >
> Well, of course I was.

And I'm sure you weren't even remotely aware of the obvious way
your statement could be mistaken until you read the reply?

Right.

Have any swampland in Arizona to sell me?

- jonadab

Jonadab the Unsightly One

unread,
Nov 12, 1998, 3:00:00 AM11/12/98
to
m...@bartlet.df.lth.se (Magnus Olsson) wrote:

> Well, there's trolling and trolling. Trolling for flames is a
> despicable practice by psycho sickos who thrive on hurting other
> people.

Against it, are you?

I'm not sure if they thrive so much on hurting other people as on
the attention that hurting other people generates -- not that it's
any less selfish, because the effects are there, but anyway I'm
not sure whether I have a point here so I'll go on now.

> Trolling by throwing out a controversial statement to
> stimulate discussion is a different thing.

The only question is, *how* different?

[The waters grow muddier.]

> (For the record, I don't
> like the practice of claiming a controversial view that you don't
> really hold, just to provoke people into reacting, but that's just me,

I generally only do that with people who know me fairly well --
at least well enough to be unsure whether I'm playing DA or not.

I also generally don't *have* to do it, because so many of my
views are so antithetical to other people's views that...
well, let's just say all I have to do is broach certain subjects,
and an immature audience will flame me to death, or a
more mature one will produce a lot of debate to the
contrary of my view.

Like over in alt.dreams.lucid where I accidentally
mentioned my views on the age of the Earth...

I'm sure there's a way to steer this back to topic.

What about a game where the player character
must troll usenet for flames...
Nevermind. Off-topic was better.

"OW! OW! QUIT KICKING! SEE, THAT'S WHY YOUR
DUMB FOOT HURTS! STOP IT!"
-- Calvin & Hobbes

L. Ross Raszewski

unread,
Nov 12, 1998, 3:00:00 AM11/12/98
to
In article <19981111131814...@ngol07.aol.com>,
doea...@aol.com (Doeadeer3) wrote:
>
> (4) Well, literature is just literature and film is just film, but with a good
> book or movie, I can really get "into" their characters as well (books easier
> than movies, of course.).

Yes, of course. But in neither books nor movies is it the norm for the
narrative to claim that you _are_ the protagonist -- you're almost invariably
getting "into" a defined protagonist. Personally, I find that the better the
protagonist of a book, film, or game is characterized, the easier it is for
me to get "into" the character.

LucFrench

unread,
Nov 12, 1998, 3:00:00 AM11/12/98
to
>> Trolling by throwing out a controversial statement to
>> stimulate discussion is a different thing.
>
>The only question is, *how* different?
>
>[The waters grow muddier.]

Well, one could always view this in the simple way, by judging intent.

Simply, crossposting between an AA newsgroup and a rec.beer.brewing <namespace>
would be defined as Trolling for Flames. [A]

Saying that you don't like the way [the newsgroup/Usenet] is going is usually
not Trolling for Flames; it's merely grouching. [B]

Stating that you're planning on taking up maintaining Inform because Graham is
Dead (Hey, it's in the library, if you play it backwords! (Forgive me; obscure
joke)) might be considered Trolling for Discussion. [C] (And possably Trolling
for Prof. Nelson, but that's another (on-topic) discussion.)

A is an intentionally bad action.
B is usually not of bad intent.
C is pretty clean, in as far as intent goes. It's flame bait, but no bad intent
is involved, merely an attempt to get discussion started.

[Be warned: The next paragraph is a long personal story that goes nowhere.
(Just call me 'Rambling Man'. (Scott Adams refrence. Sorry.)) I wanted to
mention ssuk in the interests of full personal disclosure; if you want to know
about my personal contribution to a possible future draft of the net.legends
FAQ, read on.]

If I ever had a want for A, I got it satified by the proposal for
soc.subculture.usenet.kooks; a flamewar between various news.groups regulars
was set off. (There's a varient of Godwin's Law which states that Anarchy vs.
Despotism is The central discussion of netnews; other conversation is possible
for a time, but all material must eventually go back to the main fuel; I think
the ssuk flamewar would be a good proof of that.) I didn't participate. I was
mainly interested in improving the proposal; you see, I wanted a version of
alt.usenet.kooks that didn't have quite so much Crossposts from Hell (or, in
the case of Bill Palmer, crossposts from The Land of Nod). I gave up about the
time it became clear that I couldn't continue the proposal without further
heating up the flamewar; besides the Crossposters from Hell left
alt.usenet.kooks (mostly) behind, so my main motivation for even getting
involved in ssuk was gone.

>"OW! OW! QUIT KICKING! SEE, THAT'S WHY YOUR
> DUMB FOOT HURTS! STOP IT!"
> -- Calvin & Hobbes

That's what usually happens to people who engage in A, BTW.

Thanks
Luc "Help! I'm turning into Palmjob![1]" French

[1] Well, actually, if I were turning into Palmjob, I'd be claiming I was
kicking all your @$$es and calling myself Flame Monster. Like I say, the main
reason I'm not a kook is that I recognize that I have kook-like tendancies.

stuart...@my-dejanews.com

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Nov 12, 1998, 3:00:00 AM11/12/98
to
In article <bhines-1111...@lax-ts4-h1-45-165.ispmodems.net>,

bhi...@san.rr.com (Ben) wrote:
> In article <19981111131814...@ngol07.aol.com>,
> doea...@aol.com (Doeadeer3) wrote:
> > minimal. But it is also why I can't play games with male-oriented sex, I
feel
> > sorry for the females in the game (being just sexual objects, I
> sympathize with
> > them, not the male PC).
>
> The two don't seem mutually exclusive to me - are they? It would seem a
> good writer could write male-oriented sex IF which doesn't portray females
> as "objects". You are saying it is impossible to write male-oriented sex
> without objectifying women? I disagree. You are generalizing too much
> here.
>
> All it needs is a good writer. :)

Why reply to a sexist?

Bye,

--
Stuart Moore.

Roger Carbol

unread,
Nov 12, 1998, 3:00:00 AM11/12/98
to
Ben wrote:

> The two don't seem mutually exclusive to me - are they? It would seem a
> good writer could write male-oriented sex IF which doesn't portray females
> as "objects". You are saying it is impossible to write male-oriented sex
> without objectifying women? I disagree. You are generalizing too much
> here.

Indeed. It's quite possible to have (very) male-oriented sex IF
without any female characters whatsoever.


.. Roger Carbol .. r...@shaw.wave.ca .. sex object oriented

Wildman, the Cuberstalker

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Nov 12, 1998, 3:00:00 AM11/12/98
to
On Thu, 12 Nov 1998 08:43:54 +0000, Roger Carbol <r...@shaw.wave.ca> wrote:
>Ben wrote:
>
>> The two don't seem mutually exclusive to me - are they? It would seem a
>> good writer could write male-oriented sex IF which doesn't portray females
>> as "objects". You are saying it is impossible to write male-oriented sex
>> without objectifying women? I disagree. You are generalizing too much
>> here.
>
>Indeed. It's quite possible to have (very) male-oriented sex IF
>without any female characters whatsoever.

Or even without any NPCs.

--
Wildman, the Cuberstalker
You know the Klingon proverb that tells whose revenge is a dish that is best
served cold? It is very cold....in Cuberspace.
Fight spam - http://www.cauce.org/
DO NOT SPAM THIS ADDRESS

Doeadeer3

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Nov 12, 1998, 3:00:00 AM11/12/98
to

In article <bhines-1111...@lax-ts4-h1-45-165.ispmodems.net>,
bhi...@san.rr.com (Ben) writes:

>The two don't seem mutually exclusive to me - are they? It would seem a
>good writer could write male-oriented sex IF which doesn't portray females
>as "objects". You are saying it is impossible to write male-oriented sex
>without objectifying women? I disagree. You are generalizing too much
>here.

Possible. Haven't seen it yet. Frankly, not likely to either. IF has its
limits, for that matter so do writers. If the goal (points or not) is to get
into "her pants" it will be objectifying women. If someone writes sex within
the context of a relationship or within the context of a more involved plot
where sex is pertinent to that plot development, okay, then not. But I think
when most gamers are eagerly looking for "adult" IF they are not really
looking for anything like that.

Take that how you will. BTW, my attitude is not uncommon for women. And despite
the fact you jumped onto my statement, I really don't want to argue about this.
It takes courage to say any thing about it at all, where the group is 95% (or
more) men. You do know, don't you, that men and women DO tend to see sex and
relationships and love differently, don't you?

Doeadeer3

unread,
Nov 12, 1998, 3:00:00 AM11/12/98
to

Okay, I haven't even tried to do this yet, hoping to get some pointers before I
waste a lot of time trying the wrong thing(s).

I am writing a trilogy. Is there anyway I can create a save file for game I
(not the normal data file) that can be read in by game II?

At the end of Part I, I would like to be able to save the contents of the
player's last location (small) and their inventory, so when Part II starts I
can read in that file and start the next section with the objects the player
acquired in the first section (i.e. I would code for all the objects the player
could have acquired, but it is likely the player would only have acquired some
of them.)

So game play can resume with it looking like the player is progressing from
where they left off (not where someone else left off, or a mystical someone
left off).

WouId I use @ stream_output (I may have spelled that wrong, or reversed it, but
you know what I mean)? Can it be done at all? (If not, I will work around it.)

Yes, it has to be a trilogy. And it will be awhile before I write Part II.

TIA.

Roger Carbol

unread,
Nov 12, 1998, 3:00:00 AM11/12/98
to
Doeadeer3 wrote:

> If the goal (points or not) is to get
> into "her pants" it will be objectifying women.


On the other hand, most IF reduces all NPC's to "objects" in this
sense. The goal is to get the sherbet from Mz. Whatshername, or
the potion for the hawker, or a coin from the dwarf, or whatnot.


.. Roger Carbol .. r...@shaw.wave.ca .. what do you want to sex?

Andrew Plotkin

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Nov 12, 1998, 3:00:00 AM11/12/98
to
Doeadeer3 (doea...@aol.com) wrote:

> Okay, I haven't even tried to do this yet, hoping to get some pointers before I
> waste a lot of time trying the wrong thing(s).

> I am writing a trilogy. Is there anyway I can create a save file for game I
> (not the normal data file) that can be read in by game II?

Yes, if the interpreter supports the extended save opcode. (I think the
major ones all do right now.)

You can't stream out data; you build a chunk of memory and write it all at
once. The memory can contain any data you want. I guess you'd want an
inventory list and some arbitrary flags.

Remember that Inform object numbers vary from game to game and even
between different compiles of a single game. Don't try to store those in
your file. Instead, define constants to refer to particular objects.

When you write game II, be sure to put in a way to start the game without
a "save" file. Someone may have lost his, or be playing on a different
machine, or use an interpreter that doesn't supported extended save.

Andrew Plotkin

unread,
Nov 12, 1998, 3:00:00 AM11/12/98
to
Ben (bhi...@san.rr.com) wrote:
> In article <19981111131814...@ngol07.aol.com>,
> doea...@aol.com (Doeadeer3) wrote:
> > minimal. But it is also why I can't play games with male-oriented sex, I feel
> > sorry for the females in the game (being just sexual objects, I
> > sympathize with them, not the male PC).

> The two don't seem mutually exclusive to me - are they? It would seem a


> good writer could write male-oriented sex IF which doesn't portray females
> as "objects". You are saying it is impossible to write male-oriented sex
> without objectifying women?

I'm sorry, I came in late.

What *is* "male-oriented sex IF"?

I would have assumed you meant IF about sex between men, but the context
implies otherwise.

Stephen Granade

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Nov 12, 1998, 3:00:00 AM11/12/98
to
On Thu, 12 Nov 1998, Andrew Plotkin wrote:

> Doeadeer3 (doea...@aol.com) wrote:
>
> > Okay, I haven't even tried to do this yet, hoping to get some pointers before I
> > waste a lot of time trying the wrong thing(s).
>
> > I am writing a trilogy. Is there anyway I can create a save file for game I
> > (not the normal data file) that can be read in by game II?
>
> Yes, if the interpreter supports the extended save opcode. (I think the
> major ones all do right now.)

With the notable exception of WinFrotz, I believe.

Stephen

--
Stephen Granade | Interested in adventure games?
sgra...@phy.duke.edu | Visit Mining Co.'s IF Page
Duke University, Physics Dept | http://interactfiction.miningco.com


Matthew T. Russotto

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Nov 12, 1998, 3:00:00 AM11/12/98
to
In article <19981112132241...@ngol06.aol.com>,

Doeadeer3 <doea...@aol.com> wrote:
}
}Okay, I haven't even tried to do this yet, hoping to get some pointers before I
}waste a lot of time trying the wrong thing(s).
}
}I am writing a trilogy. Is there anyway I can create a save file for game I
}(not the normal data file) that can be read in by game II?

Look at the "extended save" opcodes. But be aware that certain
interpreters require that the region saved be re-loaded to the same
area of the Z-machine. (This holds for Infocom's own mac interpreters and
ZIP Infinity)

green_g...@my-dejanews.com

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Nov 12, 1998, 3:00:00 AM11/12/98
to
In article <72era2$t3v$1...@nnrp1.dejanews.com>,
> bhi...@san.rr.com (Ben) wrote:
> > In article <19981111131814...@ngol07.aol.com>,
> > doea...@aol.com (Doeadeer3) wrote:
> > > minimal. But it is also why I can't play games with male-oriented sex, I
> feel
> > > sorry for the females in the game (being just sexual objects, I
> > sympathize with
> > > them, not the male PC).
> >
> > The two don't seem mutually exclusive to me - are they? It would seem a
> > good writer could write male-oriented sex IF which doesn't portray females
> > as "objects". You are saying it is impossible to write male-oriented sex
> > without objectifying women? I disagree. You are generalizing too much
> > here.
> >
> > All it needs is a good writer. :)
>
> Why reply to a sexist?
>

Men and Women don't necessarily enjoy the same kind of erotic media. I read
somewhere that men are more visual and explicit - women more literary and
emotional. Hence the respective popularity of PlayBoy and Romance novals.

YMMV - I have no clue if the statement is correct or not
Kathleen

--
-- Excuse me while I dance a little jig of despair.

Adam J. Thornton

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Nov 12, 1998, 3:00:00 AM11/12/98
to
In article <erkyrathF...@netcom.com>,

Andrew Plotkin <erky...@netcom.com> wrote:
>Matthew T. Russotto (russ...@wanda.vf.pond.com) wrote:
>> Ahh. Well when you're reading Zarf's mind, try and get the meaning of
>> "So Far" out of him.
>> Personally I suspect he did the magnets with metal walls, then changed
>> the walls to wood and forgot about them, so there's no significance.
>Nope -- it was, if I may be forgiven for repeating myself, deliberate.
>> (unfortunately he's far too subtle to fall for such obvious provocation)
>Yup.
>> Then there's the other explanation -- as a spy, you weren't there for
>> the obvious technology. That was just a bonus. You were actually in
>> INDUSTRIAL espionage, looking for the new wood-adhering magnets.
>Wasn't there a wood magnet in some Scooby-Doo episode? Used to steal the
>Mona Lisa? Or was that the Superfriends?

You dolts.

You bunch of morons.

You bunch of absolute, blithering, gibbering idiots.

It's *obviously* an homage to the greatest piece of IF of them all.

Let me be plain:

*THIS* is *not* "wooden wood".

Got it?

Adam J. Thornton

unread,
Nov 12, 1998, 3:00:00 AM11/12/98
to
In article <erkyrathF...@netcom.com>,
Andrew Plotkin <erky...@netcom.com> wrote:
>> The two don't seem mutually exclusive to me - are they? It would seem a
>> good writer could write male-oriented sex IF which doesn't portray females
>> as "objects". You are saying it is impossible to write male-oriented sex
>> without objectifying women?
>I'm sorry, I came in late.
>What *is* "male-oriented sex IF"?

>I would have assumed you meant IF about sex between men, but the context
>implies otherwise.

I read it as IF about sex, whose intended audience was men.

For rather puerile definitions of "men," this describes pretty much all
erotic/porno IF out there right now, I think.

Doeadeer3

unread,
Nov 13, 1998, 3:00:00 AM11/13/98
to

In article <erkyrathF...@netcom.com>, erky...@netcom.com (Andrew
Plotkin) writes:

>Remember that Inform object numbers vary from game to game and even
>between different compiles of a single game. Don't try to store those in
>your file. Instead, define constants to refer to particular objects.

Good point. Thanks.

>When you write game II, be sure to put in a way to start the game without
>a "save" file. Someone may have lost his, or be playing on a different
>machine, or use an interpreter that doesn't supported extended save.

Yes, thought of that already. Will say in Part I that it has created a special
save file the player might want to save for Part II. But it is likely lots will
not or will lose it or... so then I will just randomize anything they might
have acquired in Part I (the optional stuff).

>Yes, if the interpreter supports the extended save opcode. (I think the
>major ones all do right now.)

>From: Stephen Granade <sgra...@bohr.phy.duke.edu>
>Date: Thu, 12 Nov 1998 14:27:23 -0500

>With the notable exception of WinFrotz, I believe.

Oops, is that true? Hmm, tons use that. That problem could nix the whole idea.

>From: russ...@wanda.vf.pond.com (Matthew T. Russotto)
>Date: Thu, 12 Nov 1998 20:56:23 GMT

>Look at the "extended save" opcodes. But be aware that certain
>interpreters require that the region saved be re-loaded to the same
>area of the Z-machine. (This holds for Infocom's own mac interpreters and
>ZIP Infinity)

But I have no idea how to do that.

Someone wrote me suggesting I look at Lucian's Comp98 (I guess the source code
has been released) and see how he did it. Sounds like a good idea.

Thanks all, Doe :-)

Doeadeer3

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Nov 13, 1998, 3:00:00 AM11/13/98
to

In article <364AC7...@shaw.wave.ca>, Roger Carbol <r...@shaw.wave.ca>
writes:

>On the other hand, most IF reduces all NPC's to "objects" in this
>sense. The goal is to get the sherbet from Mz. Whatshername, or
>the potion for the hawker, or a coin from the dwarf, or whatnot.

Exactly.

Doeadeer3

unread,
Nov 13, 1998, 3:00:00 AM11/13/98
to

In article <erkyrathF...@netcom.com>, erky...@netcom.com (Andrew
Plotkin) writes:

>What *is* "male-oriented sex IF"?

All the "adult" IF out there now is male-oriented in sexual content. In other
words, written to appeal to men (and won't in 99%+ of most cases appeal to
women).

Doe :-) Clearer? (Not aware of any homosexual IF with explicit sex.)

John Francis

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Nov 13, 1998, 3:00:00 AM11/13/98
to
In article <19981112213359...@ngol02.aol.com>,

Doeadeer3 <doea...@aol.com> wrote:
>
>In article <erkyrathF...@netcom.com>, erky...@netcom.com (Andrew
>Plotkin) writes:
>
>>What *is* "male-oriented sex IF"?
>
>All the "adult" IF out there now is male-oriented in sexual content. In other
>words, written to appeal to men (and won't in 99%+ of most cases appeal to
>women).

Or, to be more accurate, written to appeal to adolescent males. The
average customer for "adult" entertainment is, in fact, anything but.

But labelling it "juvenile" wouldn't do much for sales, would it?

--
John "Im typing this completely naked[1]. What are you wearing?" Francis

[1] And I'm getting some _very_ funny looks from my cowoekers.

Andrew Plotkin

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Nov 13, 1998, 3:00:00 AM11/13/98
to
Doeadeer3 (doea...@aol.com) wrote:

> In article <erkyrathF...@netcom.com>, erky...@netcom.com (Andrew
> Plotkin) writes:

> >What *is* "male-oriented sex IF"?

> All the "adult" IF out there now is male-oriented in sexual content. In other
> words, written to appeal to men (and won't in 99%+ of most cases appeal to
> women).

Ah.

All the "adult" IF out there that *I've* seen has been written to appeal
to 14-year-olds, if you ask me. :)

TenthStone

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Nov 13, 1998, 3:00:00 AM11/13/98
to
Roger Carbol <r...@shaw.wave.ca> caused this to appear in our collective
minds on Tue, 10 Nov 1998 15:19:12 +0000:

>LucFrench wrote:
>
>> 2. The Player can be summed up in one sentance. "[Player] is a detective hired
>> to search a house." "[Player] is a drug induced halicination." "[Player] is
>> both a cinimatic hero, and a viewer of the game as if it were a film."
>> "[Player] is a Bad Child." etc.
>
>> What I wanted to rant about, anyway, is the lack of complete player
>> characterizations in games.
>
>This is different from "real" literature how?
>
>"[Player] is a melancholy Dane who is paralyzed by indecision."

And that's really a drastic simplification of Hamlet, and erroneous
in some beliefs (including my own). (c.f. Kittredge)

>"[Player] is a sea captain obsessed with a particular whale."

Which is definitely far less than Ahab.

>"[Player] is the Son of God, come to save humanity."

Rather shorn down a bit, yes.

Some IF PCs are well developed, such as White (Jigsaw). Others
are more sparse, even in classic works, such as the PC (who isn't
necessarily the protagonist -- in fact, he really isn't for me) in Spider
and Web; from the PC's perspective, the game is simply an interesting,
well-produced action flick.

Round categorization is not justified on either side.

-----------

The imperturbable TenthStone
tenth...@hotmail.com mcc...@erols.com mcc...@gsgis.k12.va.us

Doeadeer3

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Nov 13, 1998, 3:00:00 AM11/13/98
to

In article <erkyrathF...@netcom.com>, erky...@netcom.com (Andrew
Plotkin) writes:

>All the "adult" IF out there that *I've* seen has been written to appeal
>to 14-year-olds, if you ask me. :)

Well, that's what I really meant, but in case some male here (or lots of males
here) actually LIKED it I was trying to be polite or at the least, as
inoffensive as I could.

Doe :-)

Hehehe.

Mark 'Kamikaze' Hughes

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Nov 13, 1998, 3:00:00 AM11/13/98
to
Wed, 11 Nov 1998 21:52:14 GMT:
Andrew Plotkin <erky...@netcom.com> spake:

>Matthew T. Russotto (russ...@wanda.vf.pond.com) wrote:
>> Then there's the other explanation -- as a spy, you weren't there for
>> the obvious technology. That was just a bonus. You were actually in
>> INDUSTRIAL espionage, looking for the new wood-adhering magnets.
>
>Wasn't there a wood magnet in some Scooby-Doo episode? Used to steal the
>Mona Lisa? Or was that the Superfriends?

No, you're thinking of the fish magnet from the Tick vs. the Dolphin.

"Money doesn't put fish on the table, *FISH* puts fish on the table!"

-- <a href="http://kuoi.asui.uidaho.edu/~kamikaze/"> Mark Hughes </a>

pmi...@my-dejanews.com

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Nov 13, 1998, 3:00:00 AM11/13/98
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In article <19981112132241...@ngol06.aol.com>,

doea...@aol.com (Doeadeer3) wrote:
>
> Okay, I haven't even tried to do this yet, hoping to get some pointers before
I
> waste a lot of time trying the wrong thing(s).
>
> I am writing a trilogy. Is there anyway I can create a save file for game I
> (not the normal data file) that can be read in by game II?
>
> At the end of Part I, I would like to be able to save the contents of the
> player's last location (small) and their inventory, so when Part II starts I
> can read in that file and start the next section with the objects the player
> acquired in the first section (i.e. I would code for all the objects the
player
> could have acquired, but it is likely the player would only have acquired some
> of them.)
>
> So game play can resume with it looking like the player is progressing from
> where they left off (not where someone else left off, or a mystical someone
> left off).
>
> WouId I use @ stream_output (I may have spelled that wrong, or reversed it,
but
> you know what I mean)? Can it be done at all? (If not, I will work around it.)
>
> Yes, it has to be a trilogy. And it will be awhile before I write Part II.
>
> TIA.
>
> Doe :-)

Objects to be shared between all three parts of a trilogy can be implemented
using the extended @save and @restore opcodes.

After including "Parser" but before including "VerbLib", define a constant
"EPISODE" as 1, 2 or 3. If EPISODE is less than 3, define a string array
"TrilogySaveFile", and if EPISODE is greater than 1, define a string array
"TrilogyLoadFile". These arrays should hold the names of the files to be used
for saving the data. After defining these, include the following code,
modifying the objects common to all parts of the trilogy as needed. Extra
attributes can be handled by defining more COMMON_${ATTRIBUTE} constants and
adding lines to LoadCommon and SaveCommon. Extra locations for common objects
can be handled by extending the COMMON_LOCATION bitmask:

Constant NCommonObjects 3;

Array CommonBuffer --> NCommonObjects;

Object RedCube "red cube"
with name 'red' 'cube',
next_common GreenCylinder
;

Object GreenCylinder "green cylinder"
with name 'green' 'cylinder',
next_common BlueSack
;

Object BlueSack "blue sack"
with name 'sack' 'sack',
next_common 0,
has open container
;

Constant SACK_OBJECT BlueSack;

Constant first_common RedCube;

Constant COMMON_LIGHT $0001;
Constant COMMON_ON $0002;
Constant COMMON_OPEN $0004;
Constant COMMON_LOCKED $0008;
Constant COMMON_MOVED $0010;
Constant COMMON_WORN $0020;

Constant COMMON_LOCATION $C000;

Constant COMMON_NOWHERE $0000;
Constant COMMON_PRESENT $4000;
Constant COMMON_CARRIED $8000;
Constant COMMON_INSACK $C000;

#IFTRUE EPISODE>1;
[ LoadCommonAttr obj i flag attr;
if ((CommonBuffer-->i)&flag)
{
give obj attr;
}
else
{
give obj ~attr;
}
];

[ LoadCommon obj i result;
print "^Do you want to restore saved data from the previous episode? ";
if (YesOrNo())
{
.LoadData;
@restore CommonBuffer NCommonObjects*2 TrilogyLoadFile result;
if (result==0)
{
print "Restore failed. Do you want to attempt to restore again? ";
if (YesOrNo())
{
jump LoadData;
}
else
{
return;
}
}
for (obj=first_common,i=0:obj:obj=obj.next_common,i++)
{
LoadCommonAttr(obj,i,COMMON_LIGHT,light);
LoadCommonAttr(obj,i,COMMON_ON,on);
LoadCommonAttr(obj,i,COMMON_OPEN,open);
LoadCommonAttr(obj,i,COMMON_LOCKED,locked);
LoadCommonAttr(obj,i,COMMON_MOVED,moved);
LoadCommonAttr(obj,i,COMMON_WORN,worn);
switch ((CommonBuffer-->i)&COMMON_LOCATION)
{
COMMON_NOWHERE:
remove obj;
COMMON_PRESENT:
move obj to location;
COMMON_CARRIED:
move obj to player;
COMMON_INSACK:
move obj to SACK_OBJECT;
}
}
}
];
#ENDIF;

#IFTRUE EPISODE<3;
Global trilogy_saved = 0;

[ SaveCommonAttr obj i flag attr;
if (obj has attr)
{
CommonBuffer-->i=(CommonBuffer-->i)|flag;
}
else
{
CommonBuffer-->i=(CommonBuffer-->i)&~flag;
}
];

[ SaveCommon obj i result;
print "Do you want to save data for the next episode? ";
if (YesOrNo())
{
for (obj=first_common,i=0:obj:obj=obj.next_common,i++)
{
SaveCommonAttr(obj,i,COMMON_LIGHT,light);
SaveCommonAttr(obj,i,COMMON_ON,on);
SaveCommonAttr(obj,i,COMMON_OPEN,open);
SaveCommonAttr(obj,i,COMMON_LOCKED,locked);
SaveCommonAttr(obj,i,COMMON_MOVED,moved);
SaveCommonAttr(obj,i,COMMON_WORN,worn);
CommonBuffer-->i=(CommonBuffer-->i)&~COMMON_LOCATION;
if (parent(obj)==location)
{
CommonBuffer-->i=(CommonBuffer-->i)|COMMON_PRESENT;
}
else if (parent(obj)==player)
{
CommonBuffer-->i=(CommonBuffer-->i)|COMMON_CARRIED;
}
else if (parent(obj)==SACK_OBJECT)
{
CommonBuffer-->i=(CommonBuffer-->i)|COMMON_INSACK;
}
else
{
CommonBuffer-->i=(CommonBuffer-->i)|COMMON_NOWHERE;
}
}
.SaveData;
@save CommonBuffer NCommonObjects*2 TrilogySaveFile result;
if (result==0)
{
print "Save failed. Do you want to attempt to save again? ";
if (YesOrNo())
{
jump SaveData;
}
}
else
{
trilogy_saved=1;
}
}
];
#ENDIF;

Object LibraryMessages
with before
[;
#IFTRUE EPISODE<3;
Miscellany:
if (lm_n==4)
{
print " You have reached the next part of the trilogy ";
rtrue;
}
rfalse;
Score:
if ((deadflag==2)&&(~~trilogy_saved))
{
SaveCommon();
}
rfalse;
#ENDIF;
]
;

The Initialise routine of the first episode should contain code to move the
common objects to their correct starting locations, and the Initialise
routines of the other episodes should include a call to LoadCommon.

-- If any source code in this post has been mangled beyond all readability,
you can find a correctly formatted version at
http://www.geocities.com/TimesSquare/Labyrinth/9563

Lucian Paul Smith

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Nov 13, 1998, 3:00:00 AM11/13/98
to
Doeadeer3 (doea...@aol.com) wrote:

: In article <erkyrathF...@netcom.com>, erky...@netcom.com (Andrew
: Plotkin) writes:


: >Yes, if the interpreter supports the extended save opcode. (I think the


: >major ones all do right now.)

: >From: Stephen Granade <sgra...@bohr.phy.duke.edu>

: >With the notable exception of WinFrotz, I believe.

: Oops, is that true? Hmm, tons use that. That problem could nix the whole idea.

I can vouchsafe that WinFrotz does indeed implement the @save opcode
correctly. I assume @restore works, but I haven't actually tried it.

: Someone wrote me suggesting I look at Lucian's Comp98 (I guess the source code


: has been released) and see how he did it. Sounds like a good idea.

I've never officially released the source code, but it's been sitting on
my home page for a while. Someone else suggested I release it; I think
I'll clean it up, annotate it, and upload it to GMD. In the meantime, if
you want to look at what I have now, you can look at it at:

http://www.bioc.rice.edu/~lpsmith/Comp98.inf

[The @save stuff is in the 'SaveInfo' routine.]

-Lucian

carl.c...@lsil.com

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Nov 13, 1998, 3:00:00 AM11/13/98
to
On 10 Nov 1998, LucFrench wrote:

> What I wanted to rant about, anyway, is the lack of complete player
> characterizations in games.
>

> I mean, even a raw GURPS character sheet give more characterization then most
> works of IF.
>
> What I'd like to know, is this this a bad thing?

I think the whole idea was to encourage projection... the character is
the *player* and therefore we can't tell the player much about
him/herself.

Funny thing is, I never identify with the character. I recently
started Jigsaw and I can't get over the feeling that Black is male and
the character is female.

When I played Theater (a really good game, BTW) I *distinctly* felt
that the character was female. In fact, it took me a long time to
realize that nothing in the game specifically pointed out sex, but I
had just assumed it.

But even in games where the character feels very male (Unkulian
Unventures), I never really imagined that *I* was the character. It
doesn't bother me in the slightest to feel this way... in
Christminster, the character is explicitly female and I *like* the
story this way... this is a case where the character *does* have some
depth and ties with the world. (I'm only partway through this one and
enjoying it quite a bit.)

On one hand, I don't want to read screenfuls about the character's
background, but I would like to see the character developed as
*somebody* other than a blank that I'm supposed to overlay my own
personality on. I'm not sure that I'd like to see games go
third-person...

> get key

Christabel picks up the key.

...but I don't have any problem playing a character who's, say,
attracted to another character *I* wouldn't be attracted to.

I have a problem with Jigsaw here... it's gender-inspecific nature
makes it very difficult to find Black attractive, even in an abstract
sense of knowing that the character finds Black attractive. I don't
know the character, so I don't know what the character would find
attractive, and I can't *find out* what the character considers
attractive by examining Black because Black is nondescript. I would
much rather Jigsaw had decided upon genders and presented the story in
a concrete instead of abstract way.

Hum. Did that do anything toward answering your question?

--
Carl D Cravens
carl.c...@lsil.com


NewKid

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Nov 13, 1998, 3:00:00 AM11/13/98
to
In article <19981112125643...@ngol06.aol.com>,
doea...@aol.com (Doeadeer3) wrote:

>
> Possible. Haven't seen it yet. Frankly, not likely to either. IF has its
> limits, for that matter so do writers.

An interesting point, but it seems to me that there ARE erotic works of
fiction that appeal to both men and women. I guess those of us who want to
write non-putrid IF that has adult elements need to break down what makes
those novels tick. Is it just that it has BOTH elements side by side, or
is there some other element that makes the blend work or one element work
for the other.

> If the goal (points or not) is to get

> into "her pants" it will be objectifying women. If someone writes sex within
> the context of a relationship or within the context of a more involved plot
> where sex is pertinent to that plot development, okay, then not. But I think
> when most gamers are eagerly looking for "adult" IF they are not really
> looking for anything like that.

I for one would truly welcome a well-written adult IF from a female
perspective, or more accurately, that actually appeals to women. I'd love
to see how it works, so I could try to be inspired by the salient elements
(this means steal all the best ideas....)

I realize that what I have written so far in this little genre is quite
unlikely to appeal to women, but that does not make it necessarily
terrible stuff.

Also, here is a question. You stated that if the whole aim of the game is
set up to "get in her pants" then it is ipso facto objectification. And if
the sex is part of a larger puzzle it might not. So you are saying pursuit
of a woman for its own sake is bad, but using her as a tool to advance a
goal is good......?
I mean, James Bond is your idea of a good man? I doubt this *is* what you
mean, but you see my point? If women want something different, they either
need to write it themselves, or make a clearer case in man-thought.....

--
NewKid
OnTheBlock

------- Begin Geek Code Block ----------
GO/BA d++ s: a C++ U--- P+ L W+++ N+ o-- K- w-- M++ PS+ PE+
Y+ PGP t+ 5 X- R+ tv+ b+++ DI+ D---- G e++ h--- r+++ y+++
------- End Geek Code Block ------------

carl.c...@lsil.com

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Nov 13, 1998, 3:00:00 AM11/13/98
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On 11 Nov 1998, Doeadeer3 wrote:

> (1), (2) Which is exactly why I like to imagine myself as the PC, really "put
> myself" into the character, to have adventures I would never have otherwise.

I think this is the reason that I *don't* identify with "PC as me" in
IF. If I really put myself into the character, I find it too
limiting... IF just isn't an immersive experience for me because at
every turn I find things that I reasonably ought to be able to do and
can't. Or as mentioned, I find I am *required* to do things that I
personally wouldn't do.

> (3) Bothers me a little, I don't like to have to commit violence, because I
> normally wouldn't, so I like to have other options or have the violence be


> minimal. But it is also why I can't play games with male-oriented sex, I feel
> sorry for the females in the game (being just sexual objects, I sympathize with
> them, not the male PC).

I have a similar problem, except that it stems from not being "that
kind of guy".

> (4) Well, literature is just literature and film is just film, but with a good
> book or movie, I can really get "into" their characters as well (books easier
> than movies, of course.).

I think this supports the other side of the discussion better than it
does your own... the characters of books and movies are fleshed out
with their own lives and certainly aren't "you". Yet you can "get
into" them. I find it the same with IF... I'd rather empathize with a
fleshed-out character different than myself than try to imagine myself
as the character.

Doeadeer3

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Nov 13, 1998, 3:00:00 AM11/13/98