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ADRIFT/IF games for beginners

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ADRIFT/IF games for beginners

Postby Lazzah » Tue Apr 18, 2017 6:21 pm

Hi all,

Over the Easter weekend I showed my new girlfriend my ADRIFT games and she said she would like to try to play them. I do not, however, think they are suitable for an absolute beginner (she had never heard of text adventures/interactive fiction until she met me) so I would appreciate any suggestions for a game, or games, (not necessarily ADRIFT) that might be more suitable for her to cut her IF teeth on.

Many thanks in anticipation.
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Re: ADRIFT/IF games for beginners

Postby Denk » Tue Apr 18, 2017 9:10 pm

You may want to check out this poll:
http://www.ifdb.tads.org/poll?id=memavsp06v1oc571

I would personally recommend the following three games:

1. "9:05" by Adam Cadre
2. "So, you've never played a text adventure before, huh?" by Ryan Veeder
3. "Wishbringer" by Brian Moriarty

All three can be played with Windows Frotz. The first two can be found on IFDB and Wishbringer can be downloaded from myabandonware.com
Only wishbringer requires mapping but you can easily find a map online and print it.
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Re: ADRIFT/IF games for beginners

Postby billy 7720 » Wed Apr 19, 2017 4:14 pm

Hello. I pretty much rewrote "Birth Of The Phoenix" for beginners as the original game itself from the Apple // series of computers. It was a classic VERY EASY beginner's game and she might give that a whirl. It's not long and pretty much the game is a cakewalk and can be finished in less than a day for any beginner.
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Re: ADRIFT/IF games for beginners

Postby Lazzah » Wed Apr 19, 2017 5:33 pm

billy 7720 wrote:Hello. I pretty much rewrote "Birth Of The Phoenix" for beginners as the original game itself from the Apple // series of computers. It was a classic VERY EASY beginner's game and she might give that a whirl. It's not long and pretty much the game is a cakewalk and can be finished in less than a day for any beginner.

Is it an ADRIFT game? Where can I d/l it?
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Re: ADRIFT/IF games for beginners

Postby rotter » Wed Apr 19, 2017 10:29 pm

Lazzah wrote:
billy 7720 wrote:Hello. I pretty much rewrote "Birth Of The Phoenix" for beginners as the original game itself from the Apple // series of computers. It was a classic VERY EASY beginner's game and she might give that a whirl. It's not long and pretty much the game is a cakewalk and can be finished in less than a day for any beginner.

Is it an ADRIFT game? Where can I d/l it?


My Delron site has a copy of this game.
Currently working on "The Blank Wall" in ADRIFT 5, "Word of the Day" and "Again and Again" in Inform 7.
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Re: ADRIFT/IF games for beginners

Postby Lazzah » Thu Apr 20, 2017 4:51 am

billy 7720 wrote:Hello. I pretty much rewrote "Birth Of The Phoenix" for beginners as the original game itself from the Apple // series of computers. It was a classic VERY EASY beginner's game and she might give that a whirl. It's not long and pretty much the game is a cakewalk and can be finished in less than a day for any beginner.

Hi billy,

I downloaded "BotP" and played the game for a few minutes. This may have been a classic beginner's game in the 1980's, but - to be quite honest with you - if you intended this game as an introduction to IF/Text adventure games, I do think that it would have been a better idea to upgrade it a bit for the 21stC, rather than do a straight conversion with all the faults and no-win situations.

If I were guiding my girlfriend through any IF game, especially any of mine, I would tell her that it is very important to EXAMINE the objects she sees in any location to find out more about them, as doing this might reveal a clue or another (hidden) object. However, here are the first things I typed in upon starting the game:

You're in a dark forest glade. It's autumn and beautifully colored oak leaves crunch underfoot. There is a faint blue haze in the air and you can smell fragrant woodsmoke. Overhead, a flock of geese wheel in the sky as they head for their winter nesting grounds.
EXITS: EAST WEST
OBJECTS: BOOK

> x glade
Sorry, I'm not sure which object or character you are trying to examine.
> x leaves
Sorry, I'm not sure which object or character you are trying to examine.
> x haze
Sorry, I'm not sure which object or character you are trying to examine.
> smell woodsmoke
I did not understand the word "smell".
> x geese
Sorry, I'm not sure which object or character you are trying to examine.

Not exactly a good advertisement for a 21stC Tutorial IF/Text Adventure game? As it is, I would not use it as a tutorial game for my girlfriend.

I am sorry to be so critical after all your hard work converting the game. Maybe you could revamp it to run in the latest version of ADRIFT5 and add descriptions for all the objects mentioned in the location texts? Eliminate all the no-win situations and you will have a nice little tutorial game!

P.S. I understand that you are programming an ADRIFT version of "Crystal Caverns"? Can I suggest that, if you have not done this already, you make it a 21stC conversion and make sure that there are descriptions for all objects that the player can see in the locations?
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Re: ADRIFT/IF games for beginners

Postby Po. Prune » Thu Apr 20, 2017 5:30 am

As a note to Lazzah's post:
it's not necessary to write any lengthy description of every object in the description. You can very well use: "This is just scenery" or something similar. The important thing is that there is a response. There's nothing more devastating for a game when you constantly get. "you can't see" etc.
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Re: ADRIFT/IF games for beginners

Postby David Whyld » Thu Apr 20, 2017 6:09 am

There's an old thread about "Birth of the Phoenix" here:

viewtopic.php?f=7&t=7658

Most people (myself included) didn't really understand why it was remade at all as it was supposed to be an exact copy of the original and didn't include any of the modern things people playing IF would expect (i.e. no X for examine or similar things). It was probably fine as an IF game in the 80's but as an introduction to IF games these days, it isn't.
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Re: ADRIFT/IF games for beginners

Postby PHatDriver » Thu Apr 20, 2017 11:03 am

David Whyld wrote:...didn't include any of the modern things people playing IF would expect (i.e. no X for examine or similar things). It was probably fine as an IF game in the 80's but as an introduction to IF games these days, it isn't.

Sorry to go off OP but what are the majors points of new age IF gameS?
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Re: ADRIFT/IF games for beginners

Postby billy 7720 » Thu Apr 20, 2017 11:08 am

Po. Prune wrote:As a note to Lazzah's post:
it's not necessary to write any lengthy description of every object in the description. You can very well use: "This is just scenery" or something similar. The important thing is that there is a response. There's nothing more devastating for a game when you constantly get. "you can't see" etc.



Prune;

I appreciate your support really I do. I remade BOTP so that PC users can experience what some of the original Apple // games were really like. It's the reason I got into ADRIFT and found the software to be quite interesting.

I did make one "mini game" just to amuse myself but that is not the real reason I got into ADRIFT. The real reason is seeing some of the original classics ported from the Apple // systems to the PC and to remain true to their creators out of respect.

The simplicity of the original text adventure or graphic adventure games is what I grew up with. Were they perfect? Far from it, but that was their charm and the reason I LOVE to keep recreated games true to the original state. It's truly amazing to see the original games ported to the PC in all their glory.

In today's 21st century, people expect way too much when it comes to the simplicity of the text adventure game. Oh yes, there is room for improvement on many fronts, but just look at Infocom's text parser - it was WAY ahead of it's time and could handle just about anything you threw at it. No matter what you typed there was a response; same goes for ADRIFT and you can even update the dictionary in ADRIFT and that's something Infocom didn't have at the time.

I realize BOTP is far from perfect, but out of respect for the original authors I remade the game true to it's original release for this reason. I don't think many folks understand why I did this but this should clear things up nicely.

I plan on taking a complete dictionary and inputting every single word into the ADRIFT dictionary and keeping it put away as a template for other original created games unlike my one mini game I made which was quite limited with it's parser. A few thousand pages of words and their meanings is worth the time to have this project completed for my personal use.

Crystal Caverns is still causing me problems, but this game will also be as true to the original as possible, but I have added a few nice things such as hints and information about the game as a little easter egg. It will have a few little added improvements from the original but the game itself will be as true to the original as possible.

I have other games finished for ADIRFT that are as true to the original releases as possible, ported from the Apple //e system to ADRIFT but I doubt I'll release them as they are SUPER HARD games: Fraktured Faebles and Palace In Thunderland are both done. I plan on recreating other games like Pillage Village and maybe Demon's Forge but that is a ways off.

I usually don't post much for several reasons and posting to threads of other folks is something that usually makes things worse no matter what I try to say; most folks take things out of context as it is with ALL forums across the web but I had to answer to your supportive post.

Anyway, thanks for the support. It's truly appreciated.
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Re: ADRIFT/IF games for beginners

Postby Po. Prune » Thu Apr 20, 2017 11:26 am

This is just a pre-anouncement, so keep your hats on everybody. :peep:

I'm working on a IF Beginner Game Competition, and as soon as I have all the details lined up I'll come back with more information.
So, in the mean time, take a little time to think how you would like a beginner's game to look.
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Re: ADRIFT/IF games for beginners

Postby Lazzah » Thu Apr 20, 2017 12:53 pm

billy 7720 wrote:Crystal Caverns is still causing me problems, but this game will also be as true to the original as possible, but I have added a few nice things such as hints and information about the game as a little easter egg. It will have a few little added improvements from the original but the game itself will be as true to the original as possible.

TBQH, I think you are doing the wrong thing by re-writing any old game using ADRIFT that is EXACTLY the same as the original. As David said, what is the point?

I intend writing a modern version of "Sphinx Adventure", the first adventure game I ever played. This game, originally written for the Acorn Electron & BBC B computers, had no "examine" command and there wasn't even a "save game" facility. If you got killed - as I often did - you had to start the game from the beginning every time. I would be absolutely mad to spend months of my time re-writing this game using ADRIFT exactly as it was in the 1980's. I intend keeping the plot and puzzles, etc, exactly how they were, but adding descriptions for all objects and, of course, retaining the SAVE function.

If you did release Crystal Caverns exactly as the original was, I would have no interest whatsoever in playing it. Sorry. :(
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Re: ADRIFT/IF games for beginners

Postby David Whyld » Thu Apr 20, 2017 1:32 pm

PHatDriver wrote:
David Whyld wrote:...didn't include any of the modern things people playing IF would expect (i.e. no X for examine or similar things). It was probably fine as an IF game in the 80's but as an introduction to IF games these days, it isn't.

Sorry to go off OP but what are the majors points of new age IF gameS?


A lot of it is things like using handy abbreviations – X for examine being the most common – or including a save game facility. Lots of old games didn't allow you to save your position, which meant that every time you died, and this could be often, you were forced to start the game from scratch. This could be a major pain because old games wouldn't allow you to enter multiple commands at one go, or copy and past from a text document, so you'd literally have to replay the game from the start every time you died.

Lots of old games also killed you off without warning (combine this with the lack of a save game facility and you're in a world of annoyance).

Mazes. They were quite popular in old games, but thankfully have mostly died out these days. You occasionally find them cropping up in games, but for the most part we're well rid of them.

Which isn't to say that new games are necessarily better than one ones - I actually prefer the old ones myself - but a lot of what made the old games needlessly frustrating is no longer around.
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Re: ADRIFT/IF games for beginners

Postby Lazzah » Thu Apr 20, 2017 2:50 pm

David Whyld wrote:Mazes. They were quite popular in old games, but thankfully have mostly died out these days. You occasionally find them cropping up in games, but for the most part we're well rid of them.

I personally disagree. I am one of the few adventure players who actually ENJOYED mapping mazes - I still do - just so long as there are enough objects for the PC to carry in order to drop one in each location. There were some unkind adventures which had mazes, but not enough objects which the PC could carry which would enable you to drop one object in each location.

In two of my future releases, updated ADRIFT versions of games written on the Sinclair Spectrum, there are mazes, but in one game there is a clue to the route through the maze if you can work it out, and in the second game there is a special method for finding your way through. I thought about leaving out these mazes, but I wanted to keep the games as close to the originals as I could.
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Re: ADRIFT/IF games for beginners

Postby David Whyld » Thu Apr 20, 2017 3:24 pm

Each to their own, but I've never been a fan of mazes. Once you figured out how to map them - dropping an item in each location - they were pretty easy, but I still never enjoyed them.
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