the "go to" command, cosmetic question

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Steve Breslin

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Mar 5, 2004, 2:54:37 PM3/5/04
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What's the ideal output for a "go to" command? I.e., what should the
player see printed to the screen during the trip?

Also, would it be good to put a "command input" opportunity during
travel, for example, whenever the player enters a new room? Would a
"continue" command be the best input to indicate "proceed with the go
to travel"? Or should the travel happen all at once, with no input
during the travel?

Presumably, the turn counter should be updated for each move during
"go to".

(I'm not sure how best to do this in my game, but I'm also writing a
module for this, so ideas about good default behavior would be
particularly welcome.)

Eric Eve

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Mar 5, 2004, 4:22:25 PM3/5/04
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"Steve Breslin" <ver...@hotmail.com> wrote in message
news:f407dc2b.0403...@posting.google.com...

> What's the ideal output for a "go to" command? I.e., what should
the
> player see printed to the screen during the trip?

My initial reaction is that the player should see what s/he would
have seen in response to the composite commands making up the travel
(although this ties in with your next question of course), together
with a further message indicating that a go to command is in
progress. For example, if the player types:

> GO TO CASTLE LAWN
And the first step towards the castle lawn from the current location
is to the north, then the output for that turn should be something
like:

You go north
{Whatever the response to a NORTH command would have looked like}
[Going to castle lawn]
>

> Also, would it be good to put a "command input" opportunity during
> travel, for example, whenever the player enters a new room?

I think so - after all players might encounter something/someone
along the way that makes them change their mind about proceeding, or
at least makes them want to break their journey. Also, of course,
you'd need to allow for the situation where they can't continue,
because they encounter a locked door, a balrog on the bridge, or
whatever obstacle you may have devised for them.

> Would a "continue" command be the best input to indicate "proceed
with the go
> to travel"?

Yes, but I'd suggest allowing a one-letter abbreviation (just 'c')
as an alternative.

> Or should the travel happen all at once, with no input
> during the travel?

No (IMHO).


> Presumably, the turn counter should be updated for each move
during
> "go to".

Yes, I think so.

>
> (I'm not sure how best to do this in my game, but I'm also writing
a
> module for this, so ideas about good default behavior would be
> particularly welcome.)

Well, that's just my view. Others may differ entirely! :)

-- Eric


Tommy Herbert

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Mar 6, 2004, 7:21:52 AM3/6/04
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"Eric Eve" <eric...@NOSPAMhmc.ox.ac.uk> wrote in message news:<c2ar2l$af7$1...@news.ox.ac.uk>...

> "Steve Breslin" <ver...@hotmail.com> wrote in message
> news:f407dc2b.0403...@posting.google.com...

> > Or should the travel happen all at once, with no input


> > during the travel?
>
> No (IMHO).

I think that for games with large maps it would be nice to have it all
happen at once unless one of the rooms you pass through has changed in
some way (a new person, object or state of affairs in it). When
writing a library module (in Inform at least - does TADS allow for
library add-ons?), I think it would be possible to provide the
designer with both this and the "press 'c' to continue" option: a
constant defined at the beginning could set that parameter.

Steve Breslin

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Mar 9, 2004, 12:50:37 AM3/9/04
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Thanks for the advice. I'd appreciate critiques of the default
implementation, if you feel like downloading the latest version of
Tads-3, plus:

http://www.acsu.buffalo.edu/~breslin/t3RAP.zip

The above includes a "go to" module and testgame.

Graham Holden

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Mar 9, 2004, 6:38:39 AM3/9/04
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On Fri, 5 Mar 2004 21:22:25 -0000, "Eric Eve" <eric...@NOSPAMhmc.ox.ac.uk>
wrote:

>
>"Steve Breslin" <ver...@hotmail.com> wrote in message
>news:f407dc2b.0403...@posting.google.com...

<good bits snipped>

>> Would a "continue" command be the best input to indicate "proceed
>with the go
>> to travel"?
>
>Yes, but I'd suggest allowing a one-letter abbreviation (just 'c')
>as an alternative.
>

I personally would prefer just pressing RETURN to continue -- if you've
explicitily gone into "go to" mode, I think I would having to keep pressing 'c'
first annoying... if you typed any other command, then this should break out of
"go to" mode and respond to the entered command.


--
Regards,
Graham Holden

g DASH holden AT dircon DOT co DOT uk
(to reply by email, replace DASH, AT and DOT as appropriate).

There are 10 types of people in the world;
those that understand binary and those that don't.

Eric Eve

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Mar 9, 2004, 7:23:41 AM3/9/04
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"Graham Holden" <Lo...@bottom.of.post> wrote in message
news:8sar409iqecakb6r4...@4ax.com...

> On Fri, 5 Mar 2004 21:22:25 -0000, "Eric Eve"
<eric...@NOSPAMhmc.ox.ac.uk>
> wrote:
>
> >
> >"Steve Breslin" <ver...@hotmail.com> wrote in message
> >news:f407dc2b.0403...@posting.google.com...
>
> <good bits snipped>
>
> >> Would a "continue" command be the best input to indicate
"proceed
> >with the go
> >> to travel"?
> >
> >Yes, but I'd suggest allowing a one-letter abbreviation (just
'c')
> >as an alternative.
> >
>
> I personally would prefer just pressing RETURN to continue -- if
you've
> explicitily gone into "go to" mode, I think I would having to keep
pressing 'c'
> first annoying... if you typed any other command, then this should
break out of
> "go to" mode and respond to the entered command.

That's not a bad suggestion - but I'm not sure whether the TADS 3
parser will allow it. Still, if Steve can get it to work, it would
be fine.

-- Eric


Uli Kusterer

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Mar 9, 2004, 8:06:08 AM3/9/04
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In article <f407dc2b.04030...@posting.google.com>,
ver...@hotmail.com (Steve Breslin) wrote:

Hi,

I know this may sound stupid but, could you maybe tell me what t3rap
actually is? I've searched on Google groups for the name, but the only
thing I got was an announcement of version 1.1. Nowhere does it say
*what* it actually is.

It reminds me of the Freeware CD I once had which had hundreds of
programs on it, all for use without charge, but although all of the
programs came with revision history and praised the names of their
authors, only two of them actually contained a blurb what the
applications actually did.

I guess it's such a simple thing that it's thus easily forgotten...

Help,
-- Uli
http://www.zathras.de

PS - I'm serious, I'm not trying to troll here or make fun of you. The
simple fact is that I genuinely have no clue what this does.

Uli Kusterer

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Mar 9, 2004, 8:10:02 AM3/9/04
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In article <witness-F7E052...@news.t-online.com>,
Uli Kusterer <wit...@t-online.de> wrote:

> I know this may sound stupid but, could you maybe tell me what t3rap
> actually is? I've searched on Google groups for the name, but the only
> thing I got was an announcement of version 1.1. Nowhere does it say
> *what* it actually is.

Okay, guess Google is too smart for me. It hid some of the results
claiming they were duplicating the ones I saw. Suffice to say, they
weren't. I now at least know it's "A Tads-3 port of Nate Cull's Reactive
Agent Planner". Now I only have to find out what that is...

Hmmm...
-- Uli
http://www.zathras.de

circular reasoning: see ->reasoning, circular
reasoning, circular: see circular reasoning

Uli Kusterer

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Mar 9, 2004, 8:14:17 AM3/9/04
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In article <witness-EFA7E2...@news.t-online.com>,
Uli Kusterer <wit...@t-online.de> wrote:

> Okay, guess Google is too smart for me. It hid some of the results
> claiming they were duplicating the ones I saw. Suffice to say, they
> weren't. I now at least know it's "A Tads-3 port of Nate Cull's Reactive
> Agent Planner". Now I only have to find out what that is...

Okay, got it:

"Reactive Agent Planner 1.0 is an NPC goal-planning library for TADS.
It includes an automatic map-crawler that allows NPCs to find their
way from any room to any other."

That's from a posting by Nate Cull. Could the author of t3rap please
include that in announcements for future versions? I suppose telling
people what a program actually does can only increase one's audience,
and saves people a lot of googling and re-googling.

Thanks,
-- Uli
http://www.zathras.de

Sam Denton

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Mar 9, 2004, 10:19:57 AM3/9/04
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Graham Holden <Lo...@bottom.of.post> wrote in message news:<8sar409iqecakb6r4...@4ax.com>...
> I personally would prefer just pressing RETURN to continue -- if you've
> explicitily gone into "go to" mode, I think I would having to keep pressing 'c'
> first annoying... if you typed any other command, then this should break out of
> "go to" mode and respond to the entered command.

I'd also change the prompt while in 'go to' mode, maybe just to '>>',
so that the player knows that hitting RETURN will not be a no-op.

Steve Breslin

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Mar 9, 2004, 12:08:16 PM3/9/04
to
Uli Kusterer writes:

>I know this may sound stupid but, could you maybe tell
>me what t3rap actually is?

Tads-3 Reactive Agent Planner (t3RAP) is a Tads-3 port of Nate Cull's
original Tads-2 module RAP. Another port of RAP available in
inform/platypus.

You can define a complex goal for a RAP-enabled NPC, such as "acquire
the treasure," and the NPC will resolve a plan for meeting this goal
by breaking it into sub-goals. It will then perform an action which
takes a step towards meeting the goal.

Or, in fancy words, it provides NPC (and PC) actors a planbase and API
to resolve an action via a backwards-chaining goal-search algorithm.

Mike Roberts

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Mar 9, 2004, 2:26:34 PM3/9/04
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"Eric Eve" <eric...@NOSPAMhmc.ox.ac.uk> wrote:

> "Graham Holden" <Lo...@bottom.of.post> wrote:
> > I personally would prefer just pressing RETURN to continue --
> > if you've explicitily gone into "go to" mode, I think I would
> > having to keep pressing 'c' first annoying... if you typed any
> > other command, then this should break out of "go to" mode
> > and respond to the entered command.
>
> That's not a bad suggestion - but I'm not sure whether the
> TADS 3 parser will allow it. Still, if Steve can get it to work, it
> would be fine.

That should be pretty easy, I think - just use a preparser that looks for a
blank command line, checks to see if the PC is in GO TO mode, and changes
the command line into CONTINUE if so.

--Mike
mjr underscore at hotmail dot com

Uli Kusterer

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Mar 10, 2004, 2:30:10 AM3/10/04
to
In article <f407dc2b.04030...@posting.google.com>,
ver...@hotmail.com (Steve Breslin) wrote:

Thanks. That's even better than what I found by madly googling around.

Cheers,
-- Uli
http://www.zathras.de

Steve Breslin

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Mar 10, 2004, 3:22:48 PM3/10/04
to
Thanks for the suggestions. Here's a transcript of how it looks now:

===================================
>goto bedroom

[You travel to the Kitchen, on the way towards the Bedroom.]

Kitchen
Kitchen. South to living room. Southeast to Bathroom.
You see a kitchen table (on which is a big box) here.
Rupert is here.

[Press 's' to stop here, or 'r' to run to the destination; press any
other key to continue.]
===================================

At this point, you can type 'r', indicating that you don't want any
more pauses between rooms; or you can type 's', indicating that you
want to stop in this room, aborting further travel, i.e., break back
to the command prompt. Any other key, space, enter, whatever, and
travel is continued to the next step.

The transcript might continue thus:

===================================
[You travel to the Living Room, on the way towards the Bedroom.]

Living Room
Living room. South to bedroom. North to kitchen.

[Press 's' to stop here, or 'r' to run to the destination; press any
other key to continue.]

[You travel to the Bedroom.]

Bedroom
Bedroom. North to living room. West (through door) to closet.

[Destination achieved.]

>
===================================

I could break back to a special travel prompt instead, along the lines
Sam suggested. Any preferences?

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