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Keys to the Kingdom

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I had a substitute teacher back in junior high that would on occasion make use of the phrase, "If opportunity knocks, open the damn door!" I didn't really think of that phrase until tonight, when in chat with Fruny on the #gamedev IRC channel, he directed me to a tool called Inform. This wouldn't just open the door to opportunity, this would blow it off its' hinges.

I had never heard of interactive fiction before, but after browsing the site for less than 30 minutes, it was clear this was to be the natural first step that Fahrenguard would go in.

Fahrenguard is first and formost a world of people, with history and culture as deep as can be imagined. The world depends on storytelling, and interaction will be a critical necessity for any player to become immersed in it. Inform will be the tool that introduces the player base to these histories and people, I'd like to share a small sample of it now:

Inform is a near-natural language interactive fiction tool that produces MUD-like outputs, though it lacks any real character customization properties. This allows for direction-driven stories, but gives the user/player an option to explore and find their own path through these stories.

The language is amazingly beautiful for someone who's only knowledge of programming is a smattering of javascript.

"Fahrenhguard" by Thraed

GameDev is a room.
Thraed is a person in GameDev. The description is "Thraed is tall, dark, and handsome."
Bob is a person in GameDev. The description is "Bob is a simple peon. Nothing more, nothing less."
A person is either a normal user or a GDNet+.
A person is usually a normal user.
Thraed is a GDNet+.
After printing the name of a GDNet+ person: say " , the Harbringer of Interactive Fiction"

Very straight forward, simplistic language construction, and the output follows:

An Interactive Fiction by ?Thraed
Release 1 / Serial number 061022 / Inform 7 build 3Z95 (I6/v6.31 lib 6/11N) SD

You can see Thraed , the Harbringer of Interactive Fiction and Bob here.

>Look at Thraed.
Thraed is tall, dark, and handsome.

>Examine Bob.
Bob is a simple peon. Nothing more, nothing less.


Simple. Effecient. Multiple action-based triggers. This is something I've been looking to find for a very long time.

I'm a writer in a land of programmers, and I'm doing just fine. [smile]
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I took a look at Inform 7 a few weeks ago - it looks interesting, definitely a big change from version 6 which had a more C/C++ like syntax. Hopefully there'll be some interesting games coming out of it.

You should browse through Baf's Guide to the IF Archive, there are some great interactive fiction games out there. I've been playing Curses! on and off for the last couple of years - it's great, but tough.

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