Hi Dark,

Dark wrote:

You find a cup, but the game simply refuses to recognize the command
"put cup under

My reply:

In cases like that I often times find I'm over thinking the
problem/solution. I don't know the game in question but in my
experience it usually turns out to be something as simple as
"fill cup"
instead of
"put cup under tap"
which reminds me of another issue. Over here in America I don't know
of anyone who calls the fosset a tap. If I were to try that command
I'd probably typed
"put cup under fosset"
because that is generally what Americans call it. Apparently over in
the U.K. people call it a tap. This difference in names for things can
result in all kinds of problems for the gamer if he doesn't come from
a country that uses that specific noun.

For instance, lets talk about a car. In America we have the hood,
trunk, windshield, etc and if I'm reading a book written by someone
from the U.K. they call those things a bonnet, boot, and windscreen
which I find absolutely weird. Oh, I can figure out what they are
talking about because a bonnet is a type of hood, windscreen sounds
close enough to windshield to take their meaning, and if someone tells
another character to put something in the boot of the car it is easy
to guess he/she is talking about the trunk.

However, these differences in language, even relatively the same
language, can make things extremely confusing. Especially, if we are
talking interactive fiction where commands are based on the developers
experience, language, and own logic when creating the game.

For example, imagine you are in a game where you have to fix someones
car in order to acquire some special item from your friend. So you go
over and type
"open bonnet"
and you get some message like "you see no such thing." You might spend
considerable time trying this and that until you figure out the
correct command is
"open hood"
because the guy who wrote it is an American and the word bonnet never
occurred to him when writing his game.

Dark wrote:

I think this is my problem with a lot of if, particularly the early
zork and collossal
cave type affairs.

My reply:

Yeah, I've been there too. This is where I think beta testing could
come in handy. You could have the fill cup example from above and
someone might say I tried
"put cup under tap"
when the developer only has the command
"put cup under fosset"
in the game. He could tell the person the solution, but update the
game to accept
"put cup under tap"
as well. This will help work out the bugs, and would certainly resolve
all the pesky language issues too.

One of the big problems with this is we don't all think the same way.
I might try something simple like
"fill cup"
to begin with while you might try
"put cup under tap"
as your first try. Both are logical commands for the same action, but
maybe the author thought of the former and not the latter command.


Gamers mailing list __ Gamers@audyssey.org
If you want to leave the list, send E-mail to gamers-unsubscr...@audyssey.org.
You can make changes or update your subscription via the web, at
All messages are archived and can be searched and read at
If you have any questions or concerns regarding the management of the list,
please send E-mail to gamers-ow...@audyssey.org.

Reply via email to