Thursday, July 19, 2012


A recent review of a game at the IF Database reminds me that it bugs me that a player can't easily ask an NPC about his or her possessions with something like >ASK MAN ABOUT HIS POSSESSION ('his' being the important word here). I think my next little distraction will involve trying to come up with the simplest, best way to handle this.

The two approaches I am considering:
  1. Make a routine to added to the adjective property array of any object that can be picked up by an NPC. Have the routine return the word "his" or "her" or "its" based on the NPC's gender and whether the object is in a character's possession.
  2. Make a verb grammar that uses a routine as a grammar token to verify that the item is being held by the right person.

The first approach will probably be easier and more-likely-to-succeed, but we'll see what works out better.

1 comment:

  1. Interesting. I think a highly interactive and context-aware ASK/TELL system would probably be the Holy Grail of IF conversation systems.

    Hugo's default ASK/TELL system is based on objects. I wonder if you could test whether a known object that is being asked about is the child/grandchild (according to the object tree) of the NPC that is being asked.

    Maybe a routine could determine which personal adjectives are allowed based on the parent of the object being asked about. If it's in the NPC, then "his"/"her"/"its" would be allowed. If it's in the PC, then "my" might be allowed. If it's in a different NPC, then "Whoever's", perhaps.

    Just a thought....