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Ding, the Elevator door opens....

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Re: Ding, the Elevator door opens....

Postby ralphmerridew » Fri Feb 10, 2012 4:57 am

Side comment: Try looking at the various IF whispers games.

(Each game was written as a series of authors, with each author seeing only the source of the section immediately before his/her own. Games generally have a rather surreal atmosphere overall; while individual sections tend to be consistent, places even two sections apart can be wildly different. The elevator game, with separate sections being parallel rather than serial, would probably have better cohesion, at least.)
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Re: Ding, the Elevator door opens....

Postby DazaKiwi » Mon Feb 13, 2012 7:40 am

Ok i have drawn up a guideline and a summary of the project. Have a read and let me know if i left anything out or if you have any more questions? Are these guidelines clear to understand?

Guide Lines for the Project :

Background and main goal of Game:

The foundation of the game story will be the player is trapped in a dream and finds himself on the ground level of a building. The ground level will only be one room probably that has the elevator in it. The building will be an abandoned place that is in stages of ruin, slowly decaying. (I will create the ground floor and the top floor along with the intro and the elevator system).

Each floor will be a world, which will have its own environment, genre, time past/future etc its boundaries are defined by the designer. You can have a story line through it based on the characters and events of the world if you like or it might just be about solving puzzles. It's up to you what you create.

The goal and Portal Parts;

The goal is to escape the building/dream by putting back together a portal machine on the top floor. The parts of the machine will be scattered across the different floors/worlds. One part per floor. The Portal object will be one of the objects that is part of the master file with the part number the level designer can change to the floor number.

The top floor will be accessible all the times, in which the player can visit and place their portal parts they have found.

For the sake of more floors being created later, the portal part will be like a circuit breaker, small in size about the size of sliced bread or a cd cover. These parts can be placed on the portal machine at any time, no special sequence or puzzle to solve putting the portal together, it will be easy as place part on portal, sort of thing. The player might place all parts together on the machine last or each time they find one.

A command will be created to show how many parts left to find and which floors the player has cleared or completed etc. (any other info you think would be handy to add, feel free to suggest).

A floor can have pre-choosen areas by the designer of where the portal part could be hidden, which will be different each game. (Im thinking a basic random placement module will be create for this to save time for designers and also help beginners- this can be worked out in more detail later. The designer just has to add to the module which objects will possible hiding locations to be picked. If floor designer wants to do it their own way, thats fine too. The idea is to have 3-4 different hiding places the portal part could be hidden in each play through.)

Organising files and tasks etc..
A master file will be created that everyone will use to create their floor on, which will include a completed ground floor. In it will be some custom groups and commands (which we all can discuss what they will be) as to be able to have custom commands universal through out all the floors.

Also floor designers will need to create folders to put their tasks, objects, in an orderly fashion they see fit and name their folders Floor1_tasks, or Floor1_tasks_room2 whatever. This will make it easier to track down tasks or event problems that may arise once they floors are imported into the main project file. And also if someone has updated objects/tasks that a designer has fixed and wants to replace.

Custom Commands:
Any new ones that a designer creates down the track and thinks could be used by the player can be mentioned on the projects thread.

The new custom commands will be added to a Readme file with the finished game that the player can read before playing and also inside the game in the form of typing Help. This way they will know about them and how to use them properly.


Continuity:

Some of the guidelines are in place for the sake of continuity rather than trying to impose on authors freedom. Making it too free means the core of the main story line- that being the player is stuck in a dream, inside a building can be forgotten, especially if a player is reloading a game save from some weeks back.

We want to remind the player they are trapped in a building, in a dream. Any other ideas the author might have for continuity can be added by them as they see fit.

So some ideas for continuity are..

I thought something basic as using descriptions about the state of building, decay and ruin, which will be mentioned on the ground floor in detail could be weaved into some room descriptions now and then as the player explores a floor. Reminding the player he is in the building still, as if parts of the building shows through the dreamscape as it were.
Where you place those reminders is up to you. Its not restricting your descriptions in anyway, i dont mean reminding the player with all descriptions. Just a few for continuity sake here and there.

The building is sort of a character in itself. What descriptions i use of the ground floor can be a basis or along the lines of what to write. But you might use sound or smell descriptions instead.

POV:
Second person only eg. You (for continuity reasons again. However npc's on a floor can refer to player as a different character, as if the player has inherited a body or person in that world, but essentially still the player. Any skill or knowledge/memory of the inherited character is lost. Which would be interesting if the player is suppose to be an expert at something and is asked to help or do something pertaining to what they are suppose to know. The designer of a floor can alter the clothing to fit the character the player inherits.
(When the player goes back inside the elevator he will revert back to what he was wearing from the begining of the game).

This rule of first person and inheriting a character, avoids the conflict of the player being seen by other npc's as an outsider who appears out of nowhere into their world. Which would bring questions like why you are there, how did you get there, lacking of trust in conversations etc. And also by inheriting a character you can insert the player directly into story line they have created for their floor. (If anyone has seen the tv series Quatum Leap, you would know what i mean.)

It's not multiple games stacked upon one another, but a building with the same character from the start who explores all the floors trying to find all the portals parts.


Rooms:
No room limit. No object limit or character limit. But beginner's neednt think they are expected to create a mammoth floor because its unlimited. Just what you are comfortable with.
Old game or unfinished projects can be used as well if you have one that would fit into this concept. Preferbly one that few has played before.

Objects:
After some debate and chatting. Ive decided maybe for simplicity sake that objects will not be crossed to other floors with exception of the portal parts collected by player. In the command task for getting into the Elevator all object except for Portal part will be dropped. This is to offset any problems of crossing over objects and task/object references for now. Maybe at a later date objects can be tested out for crossing over and being used on other floors. But for now objects stay on the floor from where they came.

The Elevator:

Will have a control panel with options for player to press a button or enter a number of floor they wish to go to. And if they have already finished that floor they will be asked if they still wish to go there. Random button will only go to a uncompleted floor. The top floor can always be visited.


Do's:

When a player completes a floor he is taken back to the elevator however you want to implement that.

A floor is to be well tested before being submitted.

Dont's:

Trap a player on a floor to force them to complete a floor before they can go back to the elevator. If a room is suppose to ensare a player by device or whatever they should have fair warning beforehand.

Deadline:

(To be discussed) Would three months be too short?

Your Floor Number:

Floor numbers will be influenced by the order of when floors are completed and submitted. Floor one will be the first floor completed, tested and ready etc..

Death:

Restict over use of killing the player, which becomes tiresome for players if they die alot.
In general in the event of a player dying the player awakens still in the dream, but back in the elevator or by the designers choosing somewhere else if need be.

In closing:
When the new Adrift update comes along with an update to the Modules you will then be able to export your completed floor as a module, where i will import it to the main game along with the others.

The only other thing that perhaps needs discussion next is whether or not to have some common custom tasks created that can be used on all floors. So some brainstorming of ideas would be helpful to avoid any
similar task clashes. A private thread will be setup in which we can all discuss stuff that might be considered spoilers to others and work through any unforeseen problems.
Last edited by DazaKiwi on Wed Feb 15, 2012 9:54 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Ding, the Elevator door opens....

Postby DazaKiwi » Mon Feb 13, 2012 9:56 am

Let's set a deadline for discussion ideas, custom tasks (Separate thread), questions etc from now until the 20th of Feb. That gives a week.
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Re: Ding, the Elevator door opens....

Postby DCBSupafly » Mon Feb 13, 2012 2:37 pm

That's awesome but overwhelmingly open. We will need a careful and cohesive group, documentation for item properties, and a shared space to list/debate how our own creations will piece together to make this.
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Re: Ding, the Elevator door opens....

Postby Po. Prune » Mon Feb 13, 2012 2:55 pm

DCBSupafly wrote:That's awesome but overwhelmingly open. We will need a careful and cohesive group, documentation for item properties, and a shared space to list/debate how our own creations will piece together to make this.


I've asked Campbell if it was possible to have a "private" thread in the forum where "designers", "Authors", "Participants" or whatever you want to call them, can chat amongst themselves about the project. Something like in the IntIF.org when a authors thread is created for the competition authors can chat amongst themselves.
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Re: Ding, the Elevator door opens....

Postby DazaKiwi » Thu Feb 23, 2012 7:40 am

Just an update. I have started on the ground floor and have a working elevator that player can choose a floor or do so randomly. I just have to polish it a bit more, in between my day job.

Have you guys been working on some ideas for your floor?
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Re: Ding, the Elevator door opens....

Postby Po. Prune » Thu Feb 23, 2012 8:41 am

DazaKiwi wrote:Just an update. I have started on the ground floor and have a working elevator that player can choose a floor or do so randomly. I just have to polish it a bit more, in between my day job.

Have you guys been working on some ideas for your floor?


Forum seems a little slow these days...
But I've been doing a little thinking... I found a theme for my floor... I won't say much about it but it will be in the 1940's
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Re: Ding, the Elevator door opens....

Postby Lumin » Fri Apr 26, 2013 5:13 pm

Any further progress or interest in this since the last post? It sounded like an awesome idea, I'd hate to see it go the way of...every single other collaborative idea the forum has tried to do.

I actually have plans to eventually do something similar just on my own. I've got a notebook full of tiny adventure ideas, the sort of things you'd use for those one day or three hour comps we used to have a lot of. I'm thinking I'll string them all together as books in some kind of magical library one of these days if I ever stop being lazy.
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Re: Ding, the Elevator door opens....

Postby Duncan_B » Sat Apr 27, 2013 12:05 am

I don't think there has been any progress on this, or none that I've heard. Failure of the previous collaborative project was sort of an anomaly because of the forum move and a lack of backed up information/participation. Before that, though, ADRIFTmas Party and others were successful, no?

Epics are often tedious; I still love and prefer quick games these days. You should definitely write some up if you get the chance.
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Re: Ding, the Elevator door opens....

Postby DazaKiwi » Sat Apr 27, 2013 3:15 am

I'm the one who started the project and have the ground floor mostly done. The elevator system is in working order. Was waiting for people to submit their floor. I did originally want to keep it to a room limit so that people are more likely to finish their floor than attempt to create something big. But it seemed some people wanted there to be no limits.

As Duncan said with the forum move and such, as well as everyone has their own projects in the works. Also the other factor would of been the module export feature at the time was still not up to scratch. Now you can export a module with unique keys.

The idea was each level had an object that had to be found in order to escape the building on the top floor.

So Lumin if you do have a small project that could be suitable do sent it to me and i will make that the first floor, it will be a start at least. Get the ball rolling again.
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Re: Ding, the Elevator door opens....

Postby Turing » Sat Apr 27, 2013 8:45 am

This actually sounds really interesting. No promises, but I might look into contributing something (exams are coming soon though, might take most of my time).
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Re: Ding, the Elevator door opens....

Postby Lumin » Sat Apr 27, 2013 2:07 pm

DazaKiwi, can you post the actual intro? It might help anyone who wants to write a floor if they had a clearer idea of how the character actually wound up in the building, the general writing style, etc.
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Re: Ding, the Elevator door opens....

Postby Turing » Sun Apr 28, 2013 3:02 am

Lumin wrote:DazaKiwi, can you post the actual intro? It might help anyone who wants to write a floor if they had a clearer idea of how the character actually wound up in the building, the general writing style, etc.


I was thinking the same thing
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Re: Ding, the Elevator door opens....

Postby DazaKiwi » Sun Apr 28, 2013 3:38 am

Here is the intro. Let me know if you think its too long or have a go at shortening yourself it to what you think would be more appropriate.

*******

You awaken suddenly with a sharp jolt to pitch blackness. You cannot tell if your eyes opened or closed?

Your your thoughts feel heavy and sluggish. You cannot recall where you were before or how you came to be here.
Then the rooms strong odor filters into your nose, a dusty stench of decay begins to wake you up even more.

You stiffly get to your feet. Slowly your eyes adjust to the low light. You give an involuntary cough which sounds almost inaudible to your ears.
The room is lifeless, its silence is like a presence of something watching.

A quick glance around you realise you are in a hotel lobby. It seems vaguely familiar.

Looking down at the floor you cannot make out what the original colour of the carpet was but only see a thin layer of dust and strewn debris. Behind you, your foot prints are clear and distinct that lead to the main entrance doors where you must of entered but do not recall.

The middle of the large room has two large faded column pillars reaching to the ceiling. Rows of once plush sofas sitting opposite one another in a various states of decay are seen beyond the columns towards the main reception desk.

You turn your attention to the walls, every direction you look has splotches of dull green peeled wallpaper as if ravaged by some disease.

To the far left of the room next to the reception desk is a large staircase leading upwards that abruptly stops where the ceiling had crushed down ontop of it blocking any access beyond. The state of the stairs themselves are warped and look rather brittle. The once stylish bannisters surprisingly upright but missing pieces like a set of teeth holed with gaps.

To the far right of the reception desk is a corridor from which a door stands off kilter with only one hinge. You presume leads to toilets or maybe staff only area.

A faint sound grabs your attention to your right where two elevators stand side by side.
One of them stands out immediately, it has a shiny unblemished metal surface. No dust. The other is covered in dust, with little dents all over it. A faded 'out of order' sign can be made out plastered over its doors.

As if on cue the shiny elevator slowly opens its doors followed by a noticeable ding sound, its bright interior light spills into the dark subdued room.

Drawn to it you approach the open elevator bathed in light.

To the east is the shiny elevator.
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Re: Ding, the Elevator door opens....

Postby DazaKiwi » Sun Apr 28, 2013 4:48 am

I have the ground floor setup as well as the elevator mechanic, i reworked it today and works great. (The ground floor is basically whats described in the intro, nothing to explore but going up in the elevator.) The player just enters the elevator and chooses a floor to go to or a random one can be chosen.

When the player exits the elevator the first floor location is always to the west of the elevator to keep things simple, this location will be part of the decaying building but beyond it leads to the game level that has been submitted. At the moment i have four levels (not including the top floor) but i can increase it when needed.

The idea was that each floor would have some rooms that has a hint/basic description of decay there as if the decay of the building itself is trying to spread through all the levels in the game world. Maybe some areas a player passes through a lot. But only as much you want to. Its not carved in stone, just helps remind the player they are trapped in this multi-floored building. Each floor/gameworld might have a different; location setting, period in history or universe. But still tied to the building.

Each floor was to have an object the was needed to assemble or activate some sort of machine on the top floor in order for the player to escape or complete the whole game. This object might be hidden in puzzle or a NPC gives it to the player whatever, somewhere in your game. Perhaps for simplicity sake that its a key of whatever you want to describe it as. And the player needs all the keys collected from each floor to activate the machine on the top floor. Make sure name the key in a way the player will know its The Key they are meant to find if you have other keys for locations.
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