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What a good idea...

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Emmanuel Deloget


I've just got an idea, something not very complex (it may need nearly one or two days of work). I noticed that there are a lot of questions on the beginner's forum where new users claim that they want to make text-based games - RGP style, full with rooms, actions, monsters and so on.

So, why not doing one ? After all, it is not very complex, and is a good design excercise (especially if you want to make it in order to teach something to C++ newcomers).

So let's see what are our needs

  1. room display - display informations about the room; the information may change, based on past user actions (for example, a monster can be killed)
  2. user input should be carefully handled - I don't want the user to type things that will crash the game, and I want the system to be fairly simple (the action set is fixed by room)
  3. the game model should not be dependant on the console to work (hey, I have preached the MVC in games paradigm for at least one year, and I would make a game that ignore it?).
  4. room description should be read from a file (the main question is: do I need one file or one file by room ?)
  5. there is some kind of RPG combat that will need some kind of RPG rules. It is not a real problem, it is just... complex :) Anyway, I prepared a complete article about developing a RPG system (actually, it was about using design principles and design patterns, the RPG system was only to make the article game-oriented; unfortunately, I never finished it [sad]) , so I know the problem rather well.
  6. there should be some particuler actions - jump over a pit, for example, may require a special test.
  7. there should be monsters, treasures, hidden treasures and secret rooms. Ah ah ah ah! And maybe a beautiful princess. Unfortunately, it can't be naked - for obvious reasons.
  8. no need for scripting - I'd want to keep everything simple; as a consequence, the game logic will be entirelly hard coded.
  9. the user shall be able to load and save his progression.
  10. the user may undo one operation. Ok, I understand that it is rather powerfull, but when you are killed because of a poisonous trap in the very last room, it can be... well, you know.
  11. last but not least I should earn at least 20.000.000 bucks with this game. Or I may distribute it for free, with the source code. I don't know...

Of course, there are a lot of other needs (I guess I'd speak about them in subsequent journal entries).

Be prepared to suffer some boring entries about software design again :)
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