Saturday, May 18, 2019

Creating Evscaperoom, part 1

Over the last month (April-May 2019) I have taken part in the Mud Coder's Guild Game Jam "Enter the (Multi-User) Dungeon". This year the theme for the jam was One Room.

The result was Evscaperoom, an text-based multi-player "escape-room" written in Python using the Evennia MU* creation system. You can play it from that link in your browser or MU*-client of choice. If you are so inclined, you can also vote for it here in the jam (don't forget to check out the other entries while you're at it).

This little series of (likely two) dev-blog entries will try to recount the planning and technical aspects of the Evscaperoom. This is also for myself - I'd better write stuff down now while it's still fresh in my mind!

Inception 

When I first heard about the upcoming game-jam's theme of One Room, an 'escape room' was the first thing that came to mind, not the least because I just recently got to solve my my own first real-world escape-room as a gift on my birthday. 

If you are not familiar with escape-rooms, the premise is simple - you are locked into a room and have to figure out a way to get out of it by solving practical puzzles and finding hidden clues in the room. 

While you could create such a thing in your own bedroom (and there are also some one-use board game variants), most escape-rooms are managed by companies selling this as an experience for small groups. You usually have one hour to escape and if you get stuck you can press a button (or similar) to get a hint.

I thought making a computer escape-room. Not only can you do things in the computer that you cannot do in the real world, restricting the game to a single room limits so that it's conceivable to actually finish the damned thing in a month. 

A concern I had was that everyone else in the jam surely must have went for the same obvious idea. In the end that was not an issue at all though.


Basic premises
 
I was pretty confident that I would technically be able to create the game in time (not only is Python and Evennia perfect for this kind of fast experimentation and prototyping, I know the engine very well). But that's not enough; I had to first decide on how the thing should actually play. Here are the questions I had to consider:

Room State 

 An escape room can be seen as going through multiple states as puzzles are solved. For example, you may open a cabinet and that may open up new puzzles to solve. This is fine in a single-player game, but how to handle it in a multi-player environment?

My first thought was that each object may have multiple states and that players could co-exist in the same room, seeing different states at the same time. I really started planning for this. It would certainly be possible to implement.

But in the end I considered how a real-world escape-room works - people in the same room solves it together. For there to be any meaning with multi-player, they must share the room state.

So what I went with was a solution where players can create their own room or join an existing one. Each such room is generated on the fly (and filled with objects etc) and will change as players solve it. Once complete and/or everyone leaves, the room is deleted along with all objects in it. Clean and tidy.

So how to describe these states? I pictured that these would be described as normal Python modules with a start- and end function that initialized each state and cleaned it up when a new state was started. In the beginning I pictured these states as being pretty small (like one state to change one thing in the room). In the end though, the entire Evscaperoom fits in 12 state modules. I'll describe them in more detail in the second part of this post. 

Accessibility and "pixel-hunting" in text

When I first started writing descriptions I didn't always note which objects where interactive. It's a very simple and tempting puzzle to add - mention an object as part of a larger description and let the player figure out that it's something they can interact with. This practice is sort-of equivalent to pixel-hunting in graphical games - sweeping with the mouse across the screen until you find that little spot on the screen that you can do something with.

Problem is, pixel-hunting's not really fun. You easily get stuck and when you eventually find out what was blocking you, you don't really feel clever but only frustrated. So I decided that I should clearly mark every object that people could interact with and focus puzzles on better things.


In fact, in the end I made it an option:

Option menu ('quit' to return)   1: ( ) No item markings (hard mode)  2: ( ) Items marked as item (with color)  3: (*) Items are marked as [item] (screenreader friendly)  4: ( ) Screenreader mode

As part of this I had to remind myself never to use colors only when marking important information: Visually impaired people with screen readers will simply miss that. Not to mention that some just disable colors in their clients.

So while I personally think option 2 above is the most visually pleasing, Evscaperoom defaults to the third option. It should should start everyone off on equal footing. Evennia has a screen-reader mode out of the box, but I moved it into the menu here for easy access.

Inventory and collaboration

In a puzzle-game, you often find objects and combine them with other things. Again, this is simple to do in a single-player game: Players just pick things up and use them later.

But in a multi-player game this offers a huge risk: players that pick up something important and then log off. The remaining players in that room would then be stuck in an unsolvable room - and it would be very hard for them to know this.

In principle you could try to 'clean' player inventories when they leave, but not only does it add complexity, there is another issue with players picking things up: It means that the person first to find/pick up the item is the only one that can use it and look at it. Others won't have access until the first player gives it up. Trusting that to anonymous players online is not a good idea.

So in the end I arrived at the following conclusions:
  • As soon as an item/resource is discovered, everyone in the room must be able to access it immediately.
  • There can be no inventory. Nothing can ever be picked up and tied to a specific player.
  • As soon as a discovery is made, this must be echoed to the entire room (it must not be up to the finder to announce what they found to everyone else).  
As a side-effect of this I also set a limit to the kind of puzzles I would allow:
  • No puzzles must require more than one player to solve. While one could indeed create some very cool puzzles where people collaborate, it's simply not feasible to do so with random strangers on the internet. At any moment the other guy may log off and leave you stuck. And that's if you even find someone logged in at the same time in the first place! The room should always be possible to solve solo, from beginning to end.

Focusing on objects

So without inventory system, how do you interact with objects? A trademark of any puzzle is using one object with another and also to explore things closer to find clues. I turned to graphical adventure games for inspiration:

Hovering with mouse over lens object offers action "look at lens"
Secret of Monkey Island ©1990 LucasArts. Image from old-games.com

A common way to operate on an object in traditional adventure games is to hover the mouse over it and then select the action you want to apply to it. In later (3D) games you might even zoom in of the object and rotate it around with your mouse to see if there are some clues to be had.

While Evennia and modern UI clients may allow you to use the mouse to select objects, I wanted this to work the traditional MUD-way, by inserting commands. So I decided that you as a player would be in one of two states:
  • The 'normal' state: When you use look you see the room description.
  • The 'focused' state: You focus on a specific object with the examine <target> command (aliases are ex or just e). Now object-specific actions become available to you. Use examine again to "un-focus". 
A small stone fireplace sits in the middle of the wall opposite the [door]. On the chimney hangs a small oil [painting] of a man. Hanging over the hearth is a black [cauldron]. The piles of [ashes] below are cold.  (It looks like fireplace may be suitable to [climb].)

In the example above, the fireplace points out other objects you could also focus on, whereas the last parenthesis includes one or more "actions" that you can perform on the fireplace only when you have it focused. 

This ends up pretty different from most traditional MUD-style inputs. When I first released this to the public, I found people logged off after their first examine. It turned out that they couldn't figure out how to leave the focus mode. So they just assumed the thing was buggy and quit instead. Of course it's mentioned if you care to write help, but this is clearly one step too many for such an important UI concept. 

So I ended up adding the header above that always reminds you. And since then I've not seen any confusion over how the focus mode works.

For making it easy to focus on things, I also decided that each room would only ever have one object named a particular thing. So there is for example only one single object in the game named "key" that you can focus on. 

Communication

I wanted players to co-exist in the same room so that they could collaborate on solving it. This meant communication must be possible. I pictured people would want to point things out and talk to each other.

In my first round of revisions I had a truckload of individual emotes; you could

      point at target

 for example. In the end I just limited it to  

     say/shout/whisper <message>

and 

     emote <whatever>

And seeing what people actually use, this is more than enough (say alone is probably 99% of what people need, really). I had a notion that the shout/whisper could be used in a puzzle later but in the end I decided that communication commands should be strictly between players and not have anything to do with the puzzles.

I removed all other interaction: There is no fighting and without an inventory or requirement to collaborate on puzzles, there is no need for other interactions than to communicate.

First version you didn't even see what the others did, but eventually I added so that you at least saw what other players were focusing on at the moment (and of course if some major thing was solved/found).

In the end I don't even list characters as objects in the room (you have to use the who command to see who's in there with you).

Listing of commands available in the Evscaperoom (output of the help-command in game)
The main help command output.
Story

It's very common for this type of game to have a dangerous or scary theme. Things like "get out before the bomb explodes", "save the space ship before the engines overheat", "flee the axe murderer before he comes back" etc). I'm no stranger to dark themes, but for this I wanted something friendlier and brighter, maybe with a some dark undercurrents here and there.

My Jester character is someone I've not only depicted in art, but she's also an old RP character and literary protagonist of mine. Who else would find it funny to lock someone into a room only to provide crazy puzzles and hints for them to get out again? So my flimsy 'premise' was this: 


The village Jester wants to win the pie eating contest. You are one of her most dangerous opponents. She tricked you to her cabin and now you are locked in! If you don't get out in time, she'll get to eat all those pies on her own and surely win!

That's it - this became the premise from which the entire game flowed. I quickly decided that it to be a very "small-scale" story: no life-or-death situation, no saving of the world. The drama takes place in a small village with an "adversary" that doesn't really want to hurt you, but only to eat more pies than you.

From this, the way to offer hints came naturally - just eat a slice of "hintberry pie" the jester made (she even encourage you to eat it). It gives you a hint but is also very filling. So if you eat too much, how will you beat her in the contest later, even if you do get out?

To further the rustic and friendly tone I made sure the story took place on a warm summer day. Many descriptions describe sunshine, chirping birds and the smell of pie. I aimed at letting the text point out quirky and slightly comedic tone of the puzzles the Jester left behind. The player also sometimes gets teased by the game when doing things that does not make sense.

I won't go into the story further here - it's best if you experience it yourself. Let's just say that the village has some old secrets. And and the Jester has her own ways of doing things and of telling a story. The game has multiple endings and so far people have drawn very different conclusions in the end.

Scoring

Most often in escape rooms, final score is determined by the time and the number of hints used. I do keep the latter - for every pie you eat, you get a penalty on your final score.

As for time - this background story would fit very well with a time limit (get out in X time, after which the pie-eating contest will start!). But from experience with other online text-based games I decided against this. Not only should a player be able to take a break, they may also want to wait for a friend to leave and come back etc. 

But more importantly, I want players to explore and read all my carefully crafted descriptions! So I'd much rather prefer they take their time and reward them for being thorough. 

So in the end I give specific scores for actions throughout the game instead. Most points are for doing things that drive the story forward, such as using something or solving a puzzle. But a significant portion of the score comes from turning every stone and trying everything out. The nice side-effect of this is that even if you know exactly how to solve everything and rush through the game you will still not end up with a perfect score. 

The final score, adjusted by hints is then used to determine if you make it in time to the contest and how you fare. This means that if you explore carefully you have a "buffer" of points so eating a few pies may still land you a good result in the end.
 

First sketch

I really entered the game 'building' aspect with no real notion of how the Jester's cabin should look nor which puzzles should be in it. I tried to write things down beforehand but it didn't really work for me. 

So in the end I decided "let's just put a lot of interesting stuff in the room and then I'll figure out how they interact with each other". I'm sure this is different from game-maker to game-maker. But for me, this process worked perfectly. 


Scribbles on my notebook, sketching up the room's main items
My first, very rough, sketch of the Jester's cabin

The above, first sketch ended up being what I used, although many of the objects mentioned never ended up in the final game and some things switched places. I did some other sketches too, but they'd be spoilers so I won't show them here ...


The actual game logic

The Evscaperoom principles outlined above deviate quite a bit from the traditional MU* style of game play. 

While Evennia provides everything for database management, in-game objects, commands, networking and other resources, the specifics of your game is something you need to make yourself - and you have the full power of Python to do it!

So for the first three days of the jam I used Evennia to build the custom game logic needed to provide the evscaperoom style of game play. I also made the tools I needed to quickly create the game content (which then took me the rest of the jam to make). 

In part 2 of this blog post I will cover the technical details of the Evscaperoom I built. I'll also go through some issues I ran into and conclusions I drew. I'll link to that from here when it's available!

Thursday, May 9, 2019

Podcast about Evennia

I was interviewed on the (pretty grandiosely named) podcast Titans of Text the other day.

In the interview, which are run by people from the MUD Coder's Guild (a great initiative!), I talk a bit about the history of Evennia, the text-based multiplayer game engine I'm working on, and go into some various technical aspects of the engine as well. Check it out and support the podcast!

https://www.titansoftext.com/4

Thursday, April 25, 2019

Steaming on, eating jam

Image credit: The Smithsonian
In the last few months, development of the upcoming Evennia 0.9 has been steaming on. Evennia is, as you may know, a Python library for creating text-based multiplayer games (MUDs, MUSH etc).
But it's not all backend work! There is also some sweet game-jamming going on, I get to that at the end. 


Evennia progress towards Python3 

The regular Evennia develop branch is now running completely in Python 3. Since we are using some new features of this Python release, we will be aiming for Python 3.7 as a minimum version once Evennia 0.9 goes stable. We will also use Django 2.1 and likely Twisted 19 - so we'll be pretty much up-to-date on all our main dependencies.

Now, while the release of Evennia 0.9 is still some time away (there are a bunch of regular bug fixes and minor features that I want to get in there too (see the progress here on the github 0.9 project page), it's worth to consider how much work it'll be for you to migrate and if you should wait or jump in right now.

If you are new, I still recommend you use regular master branch Evennia (using Python 2.7). This is for which all wiki articles and documentation online is currently written after all. Once we move to python3, you'll need to convert your code ... but syntactically the two are really not that different and conversion should not be much of an issue.

Not only are there automatic converters for most stuff, you should only need to do one pass to make sure things work and then you'll be done. This article is pretty old but it serves well to identify the main differences. Later Py3 versions just adds new stuff which you would just not have had access to in Python2.7. Once 0.9 is released, we'll also make guides for how you go about converting existing code (apart from the wealth of info on this topic online).
 
That said, if you are feeling more adventurous, or really want to use Python3 right away, many of the Evennia developer regulars have been running and testing develop branch for months now. It's overall been a pretty painless transition - as said, py3 is not that different from py2.

However, develop branch has other features beyond the py3 jump. And those are not yet documented in the main docs. So you'll have to contend with that (but asking in chat/forum works of course). However while it works fine for development already, as a matter of principle I do not recommend ever using Evennia's develop branch for a production game - it can change quickly and may occationally be broken. You have been warned! 

Game Jam

We are now a little more than a week into the Mud Coders Guild's second yearly Game Jam. This year's theme is "One Room".

I really hope some more Evennia devs jump on this one because Evennia is perfect for this kind of experimental games. This is because Evennia is not imposing a game style on you - while there are default commands you are free to replace or customize the commands, objects and every aspect of your game to be as specific as you want to your game.

For example, I have a small Game Jam contribution in the works, where I very quickly reworked the default Evennia setup to pretty much make it into a different genre of game.

Usually the systems I make for Evennia are generic and intended for any game-type. By contrast, making somehing highly niched is super-fast to do: Building a whole new framework for game mechanisms along with build helpers for me to quickly make content took no more than three days.

There will no doubt be some iteration, but I hope to spend the rest of the jam time on content and gameplay. I have some RL things happening in the coming weeks (including work on Evennia proper) but if I can get the time to tie my jam entry together, I'll likely make one or two blog posts about how it was developed and my reasons for making the choices i did. Most likely the code will appear as an Evennia contribution in case people want to do something similar for their own projects.

So, busy days.

Wednesday, January 2, 2019

Into 2019!

A new year has come around and it's time to both look back at the old and onward to the future of Evennia, the Python MUD creation system!

 

 

 

 

 

Last year 

Last year saw the release of Evennia 0.8. This version of Evennia changes some fundamental aspects of the server infrastructure so that the server can truly run in daemon mode as you would expect (no more running it in a GnuScreen session if you want to see logging to the terminal). It also adds the new Online Creation System, which lets builders create and define prototypes using a menu system as well as big improvements in the web client, such as multiple window-panes (allows the user to assign text to different windows to keep their client uncluttered) as well as plenty of fixes and features to help ease life for the Evennia developer. Thanks again to everyone who helped out and contributed to the release of Evennia 0.8!

On a personal note, I spoke about Evennia at PyCon Sweden this December, which was fun. I might put up my talk and make a more detailed blog post about that in the future, but my talk got a surprising amount of attention and positive feedback. Clearly many people have fond memories of MUDs and enjoy seeing they are not only still around but are possible to create in Python!

This year

Now we are steaming ahead towards Evennia 0.9! Already we have had a large number of contributions towards this release. A coming change is a much improved central way to make typeclass information available to a website as well as central ways to do various common operations like creating characters and linking them to Accounts. Much of this functionality is today hidden in the various default commands. In Evennia 0.9 they will be moved into more easily-findable locations as library functions everyone can just trigger without having to copy functionality.

The biggest change for Evennia 0.9 is however that we will now finally move Evennia over to Python 3. This is now possible as all our dependencies are now sufficiently ported. As discussed in the community for a long time, this will be a clean break - we will not offer any mid-way solution of Python2/3 but will drop Python2 support entirely. We will at the same time move to Django 2.+. In Django 0.9 we will however probably not use any special Python3 features yet. It should hopefully not be too difficult for our users to upgrade, but we'll of course publish extensive instructions and help when that time comes.

We will likely support a minimum of Python 3.6 and maybe 3.7.  This work is currently happening in a separate branch develop-py3 which will soonish merge into the current Python2.7-based develop branch and become Evennia 0.9 when it merges into master branch at an unknown time later this year.

There are a slew of other things planned for Evennia 0.9 and you can follow the progress from our project page. If you want to help out you are of course also very welcome. If you are new and are interested in getting your feet wet in helping out with Open-source development, we have a list of good first issues you could jump into.

Onward into the new year!



Fireworks image courtesy: U.S. Air Force photo by Zachary Hada

Thursday, October 4, 2018

Evennia in Hacktoberfest 2018

Like last year, Evennia, the Python MUD creation system, takes part in Hacktoberfest, a yearly event run by Digitalocean in collaboration with GitHub.

The premise is simple: Sign up at their website and then contribute with 5 GitHub pull requests during the month of October. If you do, you'll win a unique T-shirt!

You can help out any OSS project to win, if you want to help out Evennia, I have marked a bunch of suitable issues with the Hacktoberfest label for you to sink your teeth in. 

Code on!

Sunday, September 30, 2018

Evennia 0.8 released

After about a year of work and almost 540 commits from close to 20 contributors, Evennia 0.8 is out! Evennia is a Python game server for creating text-based multiplayer games (MUDs, Mushes, etc) using Django and Twisted.

Some of the upcoming improvements have been covered by previous dev blogs, such as the completely reworked server infrastructure:




as well as the new Online Creation System that allows for editing in-game prototypes using a powerful menu system:



Other improvements are in the web client, which supports split-panes out of the box. The user can split the output area in any number of panes, resize as desired and then assign different types of content to each pane. You can also have panes that absorb "all the rest" or "all" of the content.


There are still some bits which are a bit shaky and there is still much to do with the web client (for example, not that many outgoing messages yet defaults to being tagged in a way that the webclient recognizes). But it's a step forward!

There are many other improvements for developers, such as easier tools for running debuggers and a lot of new utilities and helper functions. The menu-creation tool (EvMenu) has seen a lot of improvements and also sport a few new decorators for quickly creating multi-page menus with full functionality to flip through and select large numbers of options.

The community has also chipped in with a large number of optional contributions for developers to use for their own game, such as a full turn-based combat system (divided into convenient chunks for the dev to pick and choose support for everything from magic and potions to equipment and ranged attacks).  There are also a range of helper functions for creating simpler menus and build commands as well as auditing tools and additions making better use of Django's very mature security features. 

The more detailed list of improvements and changes can be found in the announcement here. As usual, please report any issues to the issue tracker on github. 

Future

In the immediate future, we'll focus on resolving any bugs that may have slipped through the cracks and also resolve some other issues in the pipeline. 

But beyond that, work on Evennia 0.9 will begin. And before you ask - yes Evennia 0.9 is the version where we'll move fully to Python3. Our dependencies have now reached a point where this is possible and there will be no intermediary Python2/3 version. There is no timeline for the 0.9 release but it should hopefully not be too tricky for the community to make the jump when the time comes.


Saturday, August 18, 2018

Inline building in upcoming Evennia 0.8


Evennia, the Python MUD-server game development kit, is slowly creeping closer to its 0.8 release.

In our development branch I've just pushed the first version of the new OLC (OnLine Creator) system. This is a system to allow builders (who may have limited coding knowledge) to customize and spawn new in-game objects more easily without code access. It's started with the olc command in-game. This is a visual system for manipulating Evennia Prototypes.


Briefly on Prototypes

The Prototype is an Evennia concept that has been around a good while. The prototype is a Python dictionary that holds specific keys with values representing properties on a game object. Here's an example of a simple prototype:

{"key": "My house",
 "typeclass": "typeclasses.houses.MyHouse"}

By passing this dict to the spawner, a new object named "My house" will be created. It will be set up with the given typeclass (a 'typeclass' is, in Evennia lingo, a Python class with a database backend). A prototype can specify all aspects of an in-game object - its attributes (like description and other game-specific properties), tags, aliases, location and so on. Prototypes also support inheritance - so you can expand on an existing template without having to add everything fresh every time.

There are two main reasons for the Prototypes existing in Evennia: 
  • They allow you to customize individual objects easier. For example you could have a 'Goblin' base prototype with inheriting prototypes  Goblin Wizard" and "Goblin Chieftain" - all using the same Typeclass, but with different Attributes, equipment etc. 
  • Prototypes can be manipulated and scripted by builders without needing full Python access. This means that while the Typeclasses are designed and supplied by the Python developer, the builders can then use that typeclass to make very different types of object instances in-game.

 

What's new

As said, Prototypes have been around for a good while in Evennia. But in the past they were either manually entered directly as a dict on the command line, or created in code and read from a Python module. The former solution is cumbersome and requires that you know how to build a proper-syntax Python dictionary. The latter requires server code access, making them less useful to builders than they could be.

Note: If you are visually impaired, each image is also a link to a text-only version.

OLC index

In Evennia 0.8, while you can still insert the Prototype as a raw dict, spawn/menu or the new olc command opens a new menu-driven interface.

Select a prototype to load. This will replace any prototype currently being edited! ___________________________________________________________________________________________________  Select with <num>. Other actions: examine <num> | delete <num> Back (index) | Validate prototype | Quit   1: goblin_archer      5: goblin_archwizard                2: goblin_wizard                                          3: goblin                                                 4: archwizard_mixin
 
More importantly, builders can now create, save and load prototypes in the database for themselves and other builders to use. The prototypes can be tagged and searched as a joint resource. Builders can also lock prototypes if others are not to be able to read or use them to spawn things. Developers can still supply module-based "read-only" prototypes (for use as starting points or examples to their Builders, for example).

Found 1 match.   (Warning: creating a prototype will overwrite the current prototype!) ____________________________________________________________________________________  Actions: examine <num> | create prototype from object <num> Back (index) | Quit   1: Griatch(#1)

You can now also use the menu to search for and create a new Prototype based on an existing object (if you have access to do so). This makes it quick to start up a new prototype and tweak it for spawning other similar objects. Of course you could spawn temporary objects without saving the prototype as well.

The Typeclass defines what 'type' of object this is - the actual working code to use.  All spawned objects must have a typeclass. If not given here, the typeclass must be set in one of the prototype's parents.  [No typeclass set] ______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________  Back (prototype-parent) | Forward (key) | Index | Validate prototype | Quit   1: evennia.contrib.tutorial_world.mob.Mob                 7: evennia.contrib.tutorial_world.objects.TutorialObject    2: evennia.contrib.tutorial_world.objects.Climbable       8: evennia.contrib.tutorial_world.objects.Weapon            3: evennia.contrib.tutorial_world.objects.CrumblingWall   9: evennia.contrib.tutorial_world.objects.WeaponRack        4: evennia.contrib.tutorial_world.objects.LightSource     10: evennia.contrib.tutorial_world.rooms.BridgeRoom         5: evennia.contrib.tutorial_world.objects.Obelisk         current: (1/3)                                              6: evennia.contrib.tutorial_world.objects.Readable        next page

Builders will likely not know which typeclasses are available in the code base. There are new a few ways to list them. The menu display makes use of Evennia 0.8's new EvMenu improvements, which allows for automatically creating multi-page listings (see example above).

There is also a new switch to the typeclass command, /list, that will list all available typeclasses outside of the OLC.

 

Protfuncs

Another new feature are Protfuncs. Similarly to how Inlinefuncs allows for calling for the result of a function call inside a text string, Protfuncs allows for calling functions inside a prototype's values. It's given on the form $funcname(arguments)where arguments could themselves contain one or more nested Protfuncs.

As with other such systems in Evennia, only Python functions in a specific module or modules (given by settings) are available for use as Protfuncs in-game. A bunch of default ones are included out of the box. Protfuncs are called at the time of spawning. So for example, you could set the Attribute 
Strength = $randint(5, 20) 
to automatically spawn objects with a random strength between 5 and 20.

prototype-key: goblin, -tags: [], -locks: spawn:all();edit:all() -desc: Built from goblin prototype-parent: None      key: goblin aliases: monster, mob attrs:  desc = You see nothing special.  strength = $randint(5,20)  agility = $random(6,20)  magic = 0 tags:  mob (category: None) locks:  call:true();control:id(1) or perm(Admin);delete:id(1) or perm(Admin);edit:perm(Admin);examine:perm(Builder);get:all();puppet:pperm(Developer) ;tell:perm(Admin);view:all() location: #2 home: #2   No validation errors found. (but errors could still happen at spawn-time) ______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________  Actions: examine <num> | remove <num> Back (index) | Validate prototype | Quit   1: Spawn in prototype's defined location (#2)       2: Spawn in Griatch's location (Limbo)              3: Spawn in Griatch's inventory                     4: Update 2 existing objects with this prototype

When spawning, the olc will validate the prototype and run tests on any Protfunc used. For convenience you can override the spawn-location if any is hard-coded in the prototype.

https://pastebin.com/raw/K0a1z23h

The system will also allow you to try updating existing objects created from the same-named prototype earlier. It will sample the existing objects and calculate a 'diff' to apply. This is bit is still a bit iffy, with edge cases that still needs fixing.

 

Current status

The OLC is currently in the develop branch of Evennia - what will soon(ish) merge to become Evennia 0.8.

It's a pretty big piece of code and as such it's still a bit unstable and there are edge cases and display issues to fix. But it would be great with more people trying it out and reporting errors so the childhood issues can be ironed out before release!




Building Image: Released as Creative Commons here