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Dark Blue Monkey

A member registered Dec 13, 2018 · View creator page →

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  Thanks for playing and dropping me a note, it's much appreciated!

Well, the one thing I'll tell you is that each time you play, the game sets up a series of probabilities.  Basically, the family are disliked/hated and four or five people have a reason to commit the murder.   The question really is, who takes the shot first.    Like the play "An Inspector Calls", you only really get the whole picture by playing through every one of the plotlines, but you can usually figure it out by playing through one or two.

I can let you play the game again, and see if you get a different facet to the story, OR, I can just tell you...  Let me know which you'd prefer :)

Hehe, yeah,  I got the sand..  I thought it would be something similar, but was looking for a pedestal...  I'll try the plinth later :)

Cheers Gary!

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Some things I would expect to work given the hints, don't.

"Bridge river", "Bridge stones", "use pole"  or even "drop pole" in the right place didn't do anything, I had to "make bridge",  which uses bridge as a noun, where the hint seems to clue you that you need to use bridge as a verb.

At the sandy beach "dig" doesn't work, although "dig" did work at the pole....

Now I'm completely stuck.   Just by accident I "got" the sand... But now I'm stuck again....

No idea what to do.  Tried talking, and all kinds of other interaction verbs...  Lots of empty spaces...  :-/    

Fun game, really enjoyed it :)

There's a wee bug in that the fridge is always full of meatballs. If you open it after you've ****** the ******, then you still get meatballs, and can ********* more *********s, making the original ********s vanish :-)

Cool!  I'm glad you were able to finish!   Thanks for playing, it makes me happy that people are playing through it! :) :) :)

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Hmm.. That's curious.  You *should* be able to either PUSH BUTTON, PRESS BUTTON, USE BUTTON, DESCEND, D, GO DOWN, or DOWN.    AARGH, I just checked and there's a small bug with a boolean which would stop you winning.

I have resolved the problem and created a way for you to get back to where you were:

restart your game, and then type "debug julia" at the prompt.  The game will reset to your current location and state (with some prompts).

Let me know if that gets you going again..

Indeed,   The very strict restrictions, coupled with the " bonus" restrictions mean you've not got much to play with.  I've taken out a few of the exclamation marks, but other than those of us who deal with prose and would find multiple exclamation marks an irritation, I feel it's a useful device to induce urgency.   I've implemented all the suggestions I could, and fixed the multiply-spawning glove bug.

Ironically, some of the issues were caused because I found a bug in Adventuron... I let Chris know about it, but there are some cases where having the game *enforce* all-capitals can break something which I was using... So I had to refactor a lot of it by re-typing it all back out in caps.. I must have missed a few here and there... :)  In a few cases, the response-checking didn't take account of this because it made some assumptions... That's resolved now :)

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Aye... It says that the location DESCRIPTIONS could be only two words, but didn't say anything about the location NAMES, so I took that locations were a sort of object, and gave them two word names as well.  If Chris says you're not allowed a name and a description, then I can just change the layout to remove the description, easy enough :) 

The thing I worry about, though, is that the game is already very spartan with just two words, paring it down even more might make it even more spartan... But, I guess them's the rules.. Easy enough to fix :)

I've added an option to have a "compliant start".. So if the judges want to be fully compliant, they can skip all the good stuff. :)  I'll remove it after the jam.

p.s. I greatly  enjoyed the comment  "And NEVER use multiple exclamation marks!!!"  :) hehe.   It's hard to draw a player's attention to something important with just two words.  Punctuation can help.  Exclamation can mean shouting, or surprise.. In this case I'm using it to draw attention to something important to the plot that's happened without saying "You found an X, this looks like it could be useful" :)  Similarly, there is one timed element in the game... That uses exclamation marks to indicate peril level  "TIME LOW!!!" for example.  It's just a modern stylistic idiom used in these kinds of things.  Not oxford english, but useful.

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Thanks.   Some of the above is intentional.     There was guidance about an intro *graphic*, but not a loading sequence before the game starts, so I stuck to the two words rule, keeping it to two words per line.  If you check there is only one space character and two sequences of letters and hyphens on each line, even though the line might be quite long :)

re: the ramps.. Initially this was meant to be a spiral, with a puzzle, but I ran out of time.   I wanted to keep the idea that it was deep underground, but the two-word limit prevents an idea of depth, so I just kept the ramps.    They also give a sense of panic when you're escaping the rock fall.    And yes, there is a timer, if you hang about too long you'll get crushed.  And yes, there is an indicator when you're running out of time... But you hadn't hit it yet (I didn't want to kill the player TOO soon, it's meant to be a fun easy game, not a punishing one).  

The end of the game is meant to be a twist.  I had considered having the missing human return, but it just seemed a nice place to end.   After all, humans aren't all that important by the end, it's all about the AIs :) 

I'll block off the lift after you ascend.

I'll have a look at the other suggestions... Some of them aren't possible, but I'll see if I can sort the rest out!   In some places, the two word limit just makes a game unnecessarily obscure. I had difficulty making some things meaningful.   Room descriptions especially.  We have up to six words to make a room description. I chose to use two to try and keep the spirit of the game, but it's tricky to avoid just having synonyms  "Empty Galley " -> "Abandoned Kitchen"  for instance...   I

Thanks for the breakdown, will go through it with a fine toothed comb later on, with a strong coffee and see what can be amended.


The two word restriction  meant I had to do a lot of refactoring to make things work.  Originally I had the game designed as a dungeon escape game, but I just couldn't explain the situations in a meaningful enough way, so decided to switch to a narrative / traditional adventure.

The funny thing is... After coding in two words for a whole day, I couldn't stop thinking in two-words... "Make Coffee" I'd think to myself, "Go Down", as I walked downstairs "Open Door" as I opened the lounge door, "Fill Kettle" .. and so on.  Then I was imagining the parser responding "Kettle full!",  "Kettle boiled!"... I had to read a magazine article  to snap myself out of it.  XD   

I am going insane aren't I?

oops... Fixed it :)  Thanks Chris!  I'm such a doofus sometimes! Thanks for the save! :) :)

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Indeed.  I've changed the flow a little, and I've made the game start to remove unnecessary items as you slowly solve the puzzle, to reduce the 'search space' in the first room.   I've also tweaked the help text and changed some of the descriptions to make the link between the _____ and reaching the ______ more obvious :)

As for the lift, that's unusual... I have noticed that if you put in a "pause", like for 1000 millis, and press the enter key during the pause, the game seems to interpret it as a command.. But not sure about the double-press of the lift button...   Aha! found it!  There was an error with doing an action in a room, and then during the action code moving the player to a new room that the same action is permitted in , without "done:"... It was falling through and evaluating the same code in the new location.. I fixed it!  But, as you found, you can just go "u" and "d" as well... as synonyms for pressing the button :):) Thanks for the feedback! :)]

re: the safe code:-   :)    tee hee.. I'm glad you got the reference..  I'm a star wars nerd at heart :)

Thanks :)    

OK, I've trimmed about 25% of the game down, and removed about 25% of the objects which weren't necessary.  I removed a whole area which I had big plans for, but ran out of time... I had left it in, but it was clear it was pointless haha..   

Thanks again for the feedback, it was much appreciated!

... unless the murderer left one... unlocked... ;)

Hehe, this was a fun game to play. I liked the feel and the graphics. The text is lovely and playful.   Unfortunately I just couldn't figure out how to solve the puzzles. Perhaps I wasn't using the right words.      Definitely maximum score for the graphics! :)

I liked the premise and the setting.  Nice and tightly bounded, but some of the puzzles were very old school in that they needed one particular word to trigger them, and they weren't quite telegraphed as well as they could have been.  As an old-school text adventure, though, this worked really well.  I liked the graphics too, very playful :)

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Hehe, that's what I was going for.   The randomness won't create anything that's illogical, everything is strongly bounded to be internally consistent and each potential solution  fits into the overarching story.   So if you found a thing in a place, there's a good reason why it was in THAT place which you need to figure out. It's a murder investigation, after all :)   Let's just say that, each time you play, a different person got to him first, and that includes you.....  It's only random insofar as you find out who was pushed over the edge first...   But there's a darker story underpinning it too, if you want to try to work that out, there are clues....   :)

I'm in the middle of stripping out some of the less-useful 'connector' rooms, and I'm adding some descriptive text for some of the scenery objects to trim it down.       I'll upload an update in about 10 minutes (you'll need to restart your game if you want to play on the reduced map).  There are about 5 or 6 rooms which I added for a particular reason, which seem a bit empty at the moment..... ;-)

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try using "HELP" or if you're really stuck "HELP STUCK"   ....  :-)

You're not allowed to go downstairs until you've washed your hands, which forces you to explore a little, and you can't escape the castle until you've hunted about for an item (or preferably you're doing some investigating).   It's a murder investigation!  What would Sherlock do? (and no, the answer is not 'Opium'  ;^)

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:-) Thanks for the feedback.    I have trimmed a few of the rooms down.  They didn't used to be empty, but another reviewer told me to take out all the extraneous stuff that wasn't pertinent. 

I'll perhaps trim a few more rooms then.. I can think of three or four that serve no purpose.

The game is actually randomly generated each time.  There is an overarching story, think of it like "An inspector calls", where there are many suspects.  The game will choose to show you one 'facet' of the story each time you play through.  You can see if you can work out the whole story from that facet (there's all the information!), but you found a different murder weapon, and it might be in a different place because each time the murderer is different, and how they did it might be different too...  All the suspects want him dead, including you!  But which one got to him first, and how they did it, that's unique to you to figure out... But once you put it all together, you should get a good idea of why ;-)

I'll take a look at the room list, and trim some stuff down further......

Thanks for the feedback!    The game's huge by the jam standards, but it's about average for a full-sized text adventure.  Maybe Chris should have given a size hint as well as a theme ;-)

Hehe, aye,   Well, funnily enough, the house is a straight East-West main corridor upper and lower, with rooms on the "H" arms, I made it so you could actually test all the exits by just moving like a gearshift from the central location :)      It's a feature of games that houses are always East-West with the entrance in the middle on the south side.  It just always seems to be this way.  I've even played games where they were modelled on real life, yet when I asked the author about the 90o rotation, he just said "it felt more natural to enter by going North".  So, despite the strangeness of having the patio on the north side of the house, which would suggest a southern-hemisphere location,  I just went with the flow :)  

Chris is working on the auto-map feature. I plotted out all the locations to work with the automap, nothing should clash square-wise.  But that feeling of being adrift in a big house, not know where you're going, and the clock ticking, it what I was going for.  You really do have only a certain amount of time before... things.. happen... So you need to just push through your fears and get searching :) hehe

Cheers for the feedback :-)

ah yes, turn worked.  Wasn't expecting that as a verb since you normally turn light "on" and we don't have switches that turn here, haha!  I feel dumb now.. :D

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I'm  stuck.    Can't figure out how to get the light on.  none of the expected verbs work on it: flick ,push, turn, pull, use etc.. 

Yeah, there's a few places the text could possibly telegraph what the player needs to do a little more.  "push bench" could be telegraphed by having "climb bench" fail with "the bench isn't in the right place.." .

Thanks for the feedback.  I'll have a look at trimming some of the less useful locations... There's certainly a few locations that were added with more options in mind, and more places to run to if you needed to get away from.. things..  I'll have a look and trim a few out!  Thanks :)

A little niggle I noticed:

If you add a couple of graphics,

and then decide to remove one by deleting it, 

then the parser will sometimes throw an error if you have mentioned the OTHER graphic claiming that it doesn't exist...  If you cut/paste the whole text to force it to reparse from scratch, it realises the other graphic IS still there, and parses just fine.

Any idea why when I type "UNLOCK DOOR"  the default error is "It doesn't fit"?    Perhaps the default error if you don't have the key should be 

"Hmm, I don't seem to be able to."... I guess unless there's a KEY parameter on the object, in which case it should be "You don't have the right key."

I tried to override the unlock_door_with_what, but that didn't seem to provide an expected output..  It just defaulted to "IT doesn't fit".

OK, up to 64 images, but still not over the threshold... It's getting harder to find suitable images from my NAS... I just need 10 more images and I'm over the minimum limit....   I knew this'd take me ages hahaa.


       I'm trying to put more creepiness into the game... I've just been laughing so hard because I actually scared myself when I was testing it hahaha.   But I'm still not sure it's creepy enough to be considered for the jam.   

    I've added another three or four images, but I'm still well short of the minimum requirement.. I think I need to add another 10 or 15 images to qualify. I'm looting my back-catalog of photos from the last 30 years :D haha.     Damn, I took so many during the day, but daytime =/= creepy hehehe.

   I've tested one of the plot lines to the end... four to go.  I've also scripted the endings too, so each time you finish it you might get a slightly larger chunk of the whole story...

   Even so, I'm not sure I can hit the 31st deadline... I'll try my best to get it to you before the COP tomorrow :)



I've done a lot of work on the logic today.  My wife's back tonight, though, and I still haven't met the "graphics" minimum requirement of the Jam.  I didn't see that I needed to have so many graphics, and the game is pretty huge.  It'll take me a good few hours to find images and edit them to the requirements.

The logic is about 98% there now, but having run through the game down one of the plot 'legs', it's not really halloweeny enough. I need to add more creepiness :(   

I don't think I'm gonna be able to do it, just not enough time unless I can catch a few hours tomorrow in the day.


I was just thinking it this morning.  I'm not sure.     I think I've created a bit of a monster, and debugging the logic is proving a real challenge.  I'm not sure I have enough time to work all the kinks out AND add the artwork (I'm not an artist!)...    It's about 90% there, and I just need to debug all the story pathways....

Ahhh, of course...  That explains it.  It was late, and I couldn't tell if it was some peculiarity of the match clause, or my own stupidity :) 

Thanks! :)

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I'm heading to bed, but came across something I can't quite wrap my head around.  The first snippet works. The second one doesn't.     I'm sure I'll figure it out after some sleep.. Just thought I'd put it here in case it's something you'd be interested in.

  :match "read letter" {
     : if (is_present("visit_letter") ) {               :print "this works";
}  }

  :match "read letter" {
     : if (is_present("visit_letter") && noun1_is "visit_letter" == true) {
           :print "this doesn't";
}  }

Cool,  glad it's got you thinking anyway, and thanks for the great answer, I'll have a look through the docs and see how it goes.

If I had the choice, I would just let the parser react to everything except "a" "an" "the" "of" "by" and "some" .. So if there are any objects, you can indicate them with any word in their description. 

I haven't needed to use noun aliases. I was considering using some verb aliases the other day, but couldn't see a way to do it, so did the match string manually.    

cheers, once again! You rock! :)

Ah, cheers!  Understood.  As someone who studied AI and natural language parsing for four years, I can see what you mean. In *theory* it shouldn't matter.....

 cave_win_device : object "The magical wand of Sauron"

 evil_bad_buy : scenery "The evil wizard Sauron"

I can see if someone typed "get sauron" the parser might have difficulty.   However, you could probably spend time coding a search tree prune a little on inbuilt commands like get and drop but I think the solution's already built in.    I've seen the game say "which do you mean '1.  thing_1     2. thing_2'   .  That works really well (I had two suits at one point).

I'd perhaps add a setting  to the settings block to allow the game to react to any word (other than common prepositions and articles) in the displayed title.  It'll be a rare occasion it fails, and when it does, the game already solves it perfectly :) :) :)

select_object_by_any_word_in_displayed_name  = "true"   or something similar...    I'd perhaps go so far as to suggest making it default: on, but let people switch it off if they get into a bind and want to do it the hidden_id route.. :)

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Yes, I eventually found that... It seems an unusual design choice. 

Imagine if you walked into IKEA and asked for a "Poang bookshelf" because that's what's on the label, but the shop won't let you buy it unless you quote its hidden SAP stock code 40021303210312  ;-)

I'm okay with it reacting to the hidden ID, but NOT to react to the  actual text that the user's been presented is a recipe for confusion.


You see a bookshelf

> Get Bookshelf

You don't see a bookshelf.

Thanks for getting back to me, it's much appreciated :)

I had the same issue with a "summer suit" which was named  summer_clothes. It'd reply to "clothes" but not "suit".  It seemed odd that the game wouldn't react to the actual displayed name of the object, but instead only respond to the hidden behind-the-scenes object names....

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Hmmm.  Been running into some issues an object not being seen.   

I have this object:

   nice_suit: object "A fresh outfit"    examine_message="A very ornate suit of clothes. They're very dapper." wearable="true";

It's created successfully by this code (getting round the container issues):

:if (is_exists("nice_suit") == false){
         :print "You look inside the wardrobe and locate a good-looking outfit, and lay it on the bed.";
         :create "nice_suit";

And when I "LOOK" I can see "A fresh outfit" in the list of items.  But when I try to GET it, it tells me it can't see it. when I examine it, it just says "Nothing special".

HOWEVER, when I change its OBJECT NAME to "nice_outfit" rather than "nice_suit", it works!   If I change its name back to "nice_suit",  it can't see it again!  So bizarre!!!

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uh oh... what's a 'Collision' error I wonder...   I know what it means.. it means "missing attribute name 'var'.. but I've not seen it expressed that way before..

OK, unusual, but ok, that'll help me lay some stuff out nicely.  thanks! :)