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Adrift End of the Year Comp.t

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Adrift End of the Year Comp.t

Postby P/o Prune » Fri Nov 01, 2013 12:18 pm

Today is November 1st.
Today is the deadline for signing up for the Adrift End of the Year Comp.
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Re: Adrift End of the Year Comp.t

Postby Lovecraft » Mon Nov 11, 2013 1:27 pm

I was curious when the judging stage will take place so I can play some of these.

Edit: Never mind. Found your original announcement post. :)
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Re: Adrift End of the Year Comp.t

Postby David Whyld » Mon Nov 11, 2013 2:43 pm

So did anyone sign up in the end?
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Re: Adrift End of the Year Comp.t

Postby P/o Prune » Mon Nov 11, 2013 4:54 pm

David Whyld wrote:So did anyone sign up in the end?

Nope.... Well, I did.. but that's hardly enough is it... :x
A lot of maybe's but not a single person singning on. I guess that's the end of that.. It was worth a try, but I think I just won't bother anymore. Obviously there's no interest.
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Re: Adrift End of the Year Comp.t

Postby Campbell » Wed Nov 13, 2013 3:52 pm

To be fair, I think the timescales were a bit daunting. You proposed the comp waaay in advance, then there wasn't much chat about it, then the deadline loomed.
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Re: Adrift End of the Year Comp.t

Postby P/o Prune » Wed Nov 13, 2013 4:13 pm

To be fair, I think the timescales were a bit daunting. You proposed the comp waaay in advance, then there wasn't much chat about it, then the deadline loomed
You may be right Campbell, but it has been like this with almost every competition there has been in the last years except for the Ecto comp, and that's not even an Adrift thing any more.
I see people register and ask a few questions and then disappear out into the fog. I don't know the reason. I still believe that Adrift is one Hell of a great developer but somehow people just aren't hanging on.
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Re: Adrift End of the Year Comp.t

Postby David Whyld » Wed Nov 13, 2013 7:44 pm

At the risk of sounding like a broken record, I’d hazard a guess that the lack of interest in the comp, and in ADRIFT in general, is simply down to the fact that V5 doesn’t appeal to people in the same way that V4 did. It’s a lot more complicated, a long more long-winded and writing a game with V5 requires a lot more work than writing the same game with V4. The rest of the IF world seems to be moving towards simpler and easier systems – compare Inform 7 to Inform 6, or the popularity of Twine, or the fact there are more CYOA games in the IFComp this year than parser games – whereas ADRIFT seems to be going in the opposite direction, getting rid of the ease of use of V4 and replacing it with the complexity of V5.

If you make a system needlessly complicated, at the same time as other systems are actually becoming easier and easier to use, which one will people choose? If ADRIFT had a massive user base, it might have survived the transition from the ease of use of V4 to the complexity of V5, but things have been as quiet as the grave around this place for years now.

It other words, if you want more people to use ADRIFT, make it easier to use.
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Re: Adrift End of the Year Comp.t

Postby P/o Prune » Thu Nov 14, 2013 8:52 am

Personally I don't believe that it's the V.5 that's causing the lack of interest.
In my opinion V.5 is a step forward. You don't have to use all the bells and whistles if you don't want to. My head starts spinning and I head straight for the bottle when I see an "Oh all you have to do is %objects%%=##takeoffyourpants% " But I'm still able to create a game without all that.
Something happened in 2006 (apart from me getting sick) I had to leave the Adrift scene for almost a year, and when I returned it was like returning to a deserted house. And this was before V.5 was released.
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Re: Adrift End of the Year Comp.t

Postby Hordriss » Thu Nov 14, 2013 1:44 pm

I'll chime in a little here, and I'm a complete newbie to all forms of IF authoring.

I have downloaded Adrift, Quest and Inform 7 and to me Adrift is the most appealing of them all, in terms of ease of use (as far as I can tell so far). Inform 7 looks great on paper,and is made to sound so simple, but even the simplest thing seems to throw up errors with it. I don't know, maybe I'm just being thick, but it seems extremely fiddly to make things and commands which I've been able to do with relative ease on Adrift.

Quest on the other hand, I took one look at the interface and my mind was pretty much blown by how complex it looks!

Also, in this age of HD graphics etc where everything is presented visually and given a really impressive sheen, IF is going to have a niche appeal by comparison. It's primarily going to be enjoyed by people who remember playing such games on the ZX Spectrum, Commodore 64 etc.
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Re: Adrift End of the Year Comp.t

Postby David Whyld » Thu Nov 14, 2013 3:14 pm

Po. Prune wrote:Personally I don't believe that it's the V.5 that's causing the lack of interest.
In my opinion V.5 is a step forward. You don't have to use all the bells and whistles if you don't want to. My head starts spinning and I head straight for the bottle when I see an "Oh all you have to do is %objects%%=##takeoffyourpants% " But I'm still able to create a game without all that.
Something happened in 2006 (apart from me getting sick) I had to leave the Adrift scene for almost a year, and when I returned it was like returning to a deserted house. And this was before V.5 was released.


What happened in 2006, as far as I remember, was the big announcement of a new version of ADRIFT. Everyone immediately stopped working on their V4 games in anticipation of how much better said games would be if they were written with V5 (at a time when no one aside from Campbell had any inkling as to what V5 would be like), but then V5 got delayed, and then delayed again, and again, and by the time it finally came out, most of the people had gotten tired of waiting and wandered off to use some other system instead.

Regardless of whether V5 is the problem now, I don’t think anyone can deny that the ADRIFT scene was a lot more healthy and active and alive back in the V4 days. People joined the scene back then and found a thriving community; people join now and find a dead one (or if not dead then certainly on the verge of shuffling off the mortal coil). It’s no real surprise people don’t stick around because who wants to be part of a community as lifeless as this one? V4 was a lot more accessible than V5, a lot easier to use and people will seldom choose a more difficult system.

What can be done right now to turn things around I don’t know, but I don’t think V5 is the answer unless it undergoes some major, major changes.

Hordriss wrote:I have downloaded Adrift, Quest and Inform 7 and to me Adrift is the most appealing of them all, in terms of ease of use (as far as I can tell so far). Inform 7 looks great on paper,and is made to sound so simple, but even the simplest thing seems to throw up errors with it. I don't know, maybe I'm just being thick, but it seems extremely fiddly to make things and commands which I've been able to do with relative ease on Adrift.


Inform 7 certainly has a steep learning curve if you're taken in with its “natural language” blurb and expect to find a very easy system, but if you persevere with it, it’s actually quite straightforward. It’s just getting past the first hurdle and understanding the way it works that’s the tough part.

Hordriss wrote:Quest on the other hand, I took one look at the interface and my mind was pretty much blown by how complex it looks!


Yeah, I'm often gobsmacked by how bad Quest’s interface is and find myself quietly surprised that anyone can bear to write a game with it. The last time I tried, I think I was driven to slamming my head into the desktop within ten minutes of installing it. I guess the slick new website and the main site calling itself “text.adventures” helps, because it’s certainly not the program itself.

Hordriss wrote:Also, in this age of HD graphics etc where everything is presented visually and given a really impressive sheen, IF is going to have a niche appeal by comparison. It's primarily going to be enjoyed by people who remember playing such games on the ZX Spectrum, Commodore 64 etc.


I don’t think it’s necessarily true that you have to played IF games in the ZX Spectrum, Commodore 64 days (though admittedly I did) to enjoy them now. A good deal of the IF community weren’t even born when those systems were in prominence but still seem to have a fondness for IF games. And flashy graphics aren’t everything. I've played “World of Warcraft” for the past seven years despite the fact that plenty of other games have far better graphics. But a good story and great gameplay? No, graphics will never compare to them.
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Re: Adrift End of the Year Comp.t

Postby Hordriss » Thu Nov 14, 2013 3:30 pm

I wasn't trying to imply that ONLY people who had played the old Speccy/C64 etc games would enjoy IF as it is now, I was just suggesting it's a bit of a niche, and certainly would largely be people who had enjoyed adventures in that format previously. I could of course be wrong, but IF certainly doesn't get what I would call mainstream coverage. Which is a shame, because there is a lot of enjoyment to be had when you have a good text adventure.
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Re: Adrift End of the Year Comp.t

Postby Hensman Int'l » Fri Nov 15, 2013 4:51 am

I was in the "kinda interested" mode, but have been lurking lately due to a major change in our lifestyle: looking for a house, and finally closing tomorrow! We'll see what the future holds for my "re-introduction" into a more active mode.
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Re: Adrift End of the Year Comp.t

Postby P/o Prune » Fri Nov 15, 2013 5:12 pm

Hensman Int'l wrote:I was in the "kinda interested" mode, but have been lurking lately due to a major change in our lifestyle: looking for a house, and finally closing tomorrow! We'll see what the future holds for my "re-introduction" into a more active mode.

Wow.. Good luck, and congrats on the house...
Hopipng to see you back here...
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Re: Adrift End of the Year Comp.t

Postby ralphmerridew » Sat Nov 16, 2013 4:55 am

David Whyld wrote:At the risk of sounding like a broken record, I’d hazard a guess that the lack of interest in the comp, and in ADRIFT in general, is simply down to the fact that V5 doesn’t appeal to people in the same way that V4 did. It’s a lot more complicated, a long more long-winded and writing a game with V5 requires a lot more work than writing the same game with V4. The rest of the IF world seems to be moving towards simpler and easier systems – compare Inform 7 to Inform 6, or the popularity of Twine, or the fact there are more CYOA games in the IFComp this year than parser games – whereas ADRIFT seems to be going in the opposite direction, getting rid of the ease of use of V4 and replacing it with the complexity of V5.

If you make a system needlessly complicated, at the same time as other systems are actually becoming easier and easier to use, which one will people choose? If ADRIFT had a massive user base, it might have survived the transition from the ease of use of V4 to the complexity of V5, but things have been as quiet as the grave around this place for years now.

It other words, if you want more people to use ADRIFT, make it easier to use.


Inform 6 to Inform 7 is an increase in simplicity, but this doesn't come at the price of power; rulebooks make some things easier under I7 than I6 (generally, the less direct things benefit greatly).

Whereas ADRIFT 5's changes cost it simplicity and were somewhat mixed as far as fixing ADRIFT 4's power issues. Campbell is trying to keep backwards compatibility, which keeps him from getting rid of the design issues that caused ADRIFT 4's problems. He tried to move game logic into the library, but large parts are still at the interpreter level.
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Re: Adrift End of the Year Comp.t

Postby Lazzah » Sat Dec 14, 2013 10:49 am

David Whyld wrote:At the risk of sounding like a broken record, I’d hazard a guess that the lack of interest in the comp, and in ADRIFT in general, is simply down to the fact that V5 doesn’t appeal to people in the same way that V4 did. It’s a lot more complicated, a long more long-winded and writing a game with V5 requires a lot more work than writing the same game with V4. The rest of the IF world seems to be moving towards simpler and easier systems – compare Inform 7 to Inform 6, or the popularity of Twine, or the fact there are more CYOA games in the IFComp this year than parser games – whereas ADRIFT seems to be going in the opposite direction, getting rid of the ease of use of V4 and replacing it with the complexity of V5.

If you make a system needlessly complicated, at the same time as other systems are actually becoming easier and easier to use, which one will people choose? If ADRIFT had a massive user base, it might have survived the transition from the ease of use of V4 to the complexity of V5, but things have been as quiet as the grave around this place for years now.

It other words, if you want more people to use ADRIFT, make it easier to use.

David, you are continually harping on about how slow V5 is compared to V4 and that this is the reason that V5 doesn't appeal to people. What you do not seem to take into consideration is that anyone looking at ADRIFT as a potential tool for writing an IF game in the last few years will have never used V4, such as myself nearly 3 years ago, so how can this be a reason for the lack of interest? I have always found V5 to be quick and - apart from the expressions and stuff - VERY easy to use, despite the bugs and lack of certain actions.

I certainly agree that V5 is getting too complicated with all this "rocket science" that Campbell has introduced into ADRIFT (please don't get me started on THAT subject) but I also think that a major factor in the "attractiveness" of ADRIFT is due to the website - ADRIFT's home page is so dull and boring when you compare it to Quest's home page. A major re-design and jazzing-up of the home page would go a long way to attracting new users to ADRIFT.
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