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General Discussion / Re: Hypothetical : New gamebook platform requirements
« Last post by Villain Mastermind on October 21, 2013, 09:15:37 PM »
After dreaming up several dozen different ideas and plans, I've settled on one that does exactly what I want in a way that isn't a tangled mess. Actually, it is so simple that I'm almost ashamed and humbled that it didn't occur to me sooner.

Web components! The only way to achieve what I want without a horrendous mess of divs and javascript hacks.

But there is a catch...

The technology is quite literally experimental, which makes prototyping a giant pain in the ass. The latest versions of Chrome Canary have the needed features after tweaking the application flags, but it still acts a bit oddly. There are polyfills and shims, but they are ugly as hell, but I may have to suck it up and use them even to get a proof-of-concept prototype up and running.

Oh, well... *sigh*

I originally started coding it in TypeScript, but the web component angle was such a delicious alternative that I dropped it on the spot.
General Discussion / Re: Hypothetical : New gamebook platform requirements
« Last post by Villain Mastermind on October 12, 2013, 07:57:26 AM »
I'm in the initial design stages, more or less.
My dayjob being a corporate slave and minor related life-events have been delaying progress, not to mention time spent researching and throwing out overly-complicated designs. The simpler the system, the easier it will be to learn, use, mantain, and modify to the user's needs.
Gonna use the "Chaos Model" for this particular project... I found it in one of my research missions and instantly fell in love with the idea.
I'll post more as my life permits.
Noticeably, interactive text doesn't have many of these problems. One good quote:

And emotion is carried fairly effectively through movement, too, which is why Bioware Face - the name I have for two characters standing stock still, facing each other, maintaining eye contact and making occasional gestures that are completely unrelated to what they're saying - seems so wooden and jarring.
General Discussion / Re: Hypothetical : New gamebook platform requirements
« Last post by Chris on September 30, 2013, 03:04:12 PM »
Well it's a good idea to define some stakeholders here:

  • Writers (probably want something easy to write with, with easy ways to manage standard gamebook logic/inventory/choices, as well as publishing options)
  • Programmers (probably want something extensible and easy to modify)
  • Readers (probably want something that looks good)

Are you building something?
General Discussion / Re: Hypothetical : New gamebook platform requirements
« Last post by Villain Mastermind on September 28, 2013, 09:10:34 AM »
Off to a good start... A little confusion as to which set of project stakeholders I wanted to gather requirements from, but I was going to ask for Dev-centric requirements next anyway.

No matter... Maybe I should have just asked for requirements for the Devs in the first place. Alls well that ends well...

Currently, I am researching software/API's similar to what I have in mind to take a survey of how they tackled various problems.
General Discussion / Re: Hypothetical : New gamebook platform requirements
« Last post by HarmlessTrouble on September 22, 2013, 08:14:48 PM »
Lightweight core.  But robust API for more specific requirements.

Requirement: Extensible through API.
API for both the authoring tools and story engine.
Want to make a dungeon crawler? grab the quest tools.
Find the verb?  grab the parser module.
Old media / CYOA?  Pick a format generator.
Feature doesn't exist? Write it!
Priority: High

Which language should the Api use? meh... What's trending right now?  Python?
General Discussion / Re: Hypothetical : New gamebook platform requirements
« Last post by Chris on September 20, 2013, 12:51:47 AM »
My instinctive response is 1) Choices, 2) Inventory, 3) Logic

We should pass this on to more people - perhaps I'll send out an email!
General Discussion / Adventures in the Game Industry
« Last post by Villain Mastermind on September 19, 2013, 07:19:24 PM »
I was wondering how many of you out there have worked for a big gaming company (or even a small one) and what your experiences were...

The company I worked for was, and still is, one of the largest in the world... Among other things, they are well known for their ridiculously popular sport games, particularly a game named after a certain coach and color-commentator. I was a QA tester and had only been there for a few weeks, and since I wasn't a part of any cliques and/or suck up to any Team-leads or managers, no one could remember my name... but that wasn't uncommon in the case of new QA testers because we were hired in large batches and considered disposable.

I was going to tell the entirety of my story, which was woefully short, but I'm kinda tired of retelling it in full. So I'll just skip to the almost comical way it ended.

1) Manager whom I have never met or seen before calls me into a meeting: "Hey, you... We need to have a talk."

2) I am lectured on how my attendance and performance are not up to par, which I found odd considering that I was always on time and hard at work when everyone else was talking about sports.

3) Then I am addressed by a name that is not even remotely mine and handed a non-disclosure agreement (company secrets and such) to sign that had that same erroneous name on it.

4) After informing the manager and team leads present that the name is not mine and belongs to the gentleman that sits beside me, I am left alone for at least a half-hour to wait. Seeing as this all appears to be a bureaucratic mistake, I feel secure in the knowledge that I have dodged a bullet meant for someone else.

5) Eventually, a single team-lead wordlessly comes in with a non-disclosure agreement with my correct name on it... I am forced to sign it by security before I am escorted out of the building. In the parking lot, I see my former neighbor with a box containing his things.

6) On the drive home, my state of shock and confusion fades and I piece together what had just transpired. They had fired me just so they wouldn't have to admit they'd made a mistake. I then pull over and proceed to scream obscenities and the most vile of curses into my closed-face motorcycle helmet.

Does anyone else have any stories, good or bad?
General Discussion / Hypothetical : New gamebook platform requirements
« Last post by Villain Mastermind on September 14, 2013, 11:49:37 AM »
A gamebook is a work of fiction that allows the reader to participate in the story by making effective choices. The narrative branches along various paths through the use of numbered paragraphs or pages. (From Wikipedia)

Please excuse any typos... This post was written in a bit of a rush...

Hypothetically... If someone was to make an alternative to Twee/Twine, what would the minimum requirements be for a working alpha?

My idea is to expand upon the precedent set by Twee/Twine and start sketching out a design. I have a couple of models kicking around in my head and I've been leisurely playing with them for months, but I want to get some suggestions from the community.

At this stage, I am merely looking for requirements at the "application-level"... specifically, what the end-user should be able to do and/or experience with the program. And just to clarify, the "end-user" (we can use the acronym, EU) in this case is the reader/player.

To keep this from devolving into a list of "it would be cool if x did y", I have a simple form I suggest for responses:
  • Feature/requirement
  • Description/clarification
  • Percieved priority (Chrome, Very Low, Low, Medium, High, Very High, Critical)
As an example, here is the first two requirements that cover the basic definition of a "Gamebook" -
  • Requirement: EU should be able to view text and/or images that convey a narrative
  • Description: The text and/or images would by default be displayed in a format remenicent to a page in a book
  • Priority: Critical
And the next one -
  • Requirement:  EU should be able to make choices and/or interact with the narrative
  • Descripion: The EU should be able to effect the narrative through various means, thus determining the path of the narrative to an extent determined by the author
  • Priority: Critical
That is about as "high-level" as it gets...

"Wish list" items are fine, but keep in mind that the requirements are for the creation of the desired experience in the reader/player.
Discussing Game Design / Re: Writing/Game-design as personal therapy
« Last post by Villain Mastermind on September 08, 2013, 07:35:38 PM »
It was one of those "Funnier in hindsight" situations.

And that last post came off a lot darker than I intended...
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