A Tutorial for Playing Parser-Based Games

I have written this as an introduction to parser-based games. If you are reading this forum you probably already know to how play them, but if you fancy taking a look and pointing out any errors or ommissions, that would be great!


You can turn the tutorial off, by the way.

[I have updated the link, should work now! Thanks R2T1]

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I love this tutorial and showcase of Quest 6. really nice! There are a few minor points that irritate me:

You move the crates... And find a door was hidden behind them.
Now we are getting somewhere!

open door
You can't see anything you might call 'door' here.

Or when saving the game in another room the turoial said to do:
It is a good idea to save before doing a timed challenge, by the way (we saved recently, so no need for us to save now).
Now, get that control rod!

save Tutorial
Great, we have saved the game - though I am, a bit disappointed that you didn't followed my advice for the name... Oh, well, I guess we better continue west down this passage.

By the way: there should be a dir command to show all savegames. This seems not to work.

However, the elevator completely confused me. There is one downstairs at the robot and one in the lounge. And I do not know what to do there. All buttons show a text but nothing else happens

Push Button: 1
You press the button; nothing happens.
Push Button: 2
You press the button; the door closes and the lift moves.
Push Button: 3
You press the button; the door closes and the lift descends.
Hopefully when we exit the lift we will be somewhere new...

Waiting does not work what must I do?

Sorry about the formatting but the forum does not let me change the post

Hi Pertex

I have uploaded a new version; thanks for the observations (it seems to take up to 24 hours for an update to actually appear on this site). But I could not understand your last one. You press button 3, the lift goes up. Then you step out of the lift. It works fine for me.

Having another play and found the following typos...

You take the hat.

You will be picking up things a lot in text adventures. You should see the hat listed as held in the panel to the left now. Some games have limits on how much can be held, so be might only be able to pick up eight items, or whatever.

Most commands in a text adventure will be of the form <verb> <verb>.

'so be might' should be 'so we might'
and 'of the form verbverb ' should be ' of the form verbnoun ' (couldn't get the angle brackets to show)

Further along with the crowbar - 'when authoring - a text adventurer ' should be 'when authoring - a text adventure' (no r)

I'll do some more exploring later. I just typed SAVE and got a weird response about robots and hallways???

R2T1: "I just typed SAVE and got a weird response about robots and hallways???"

That is odd, it works for me. Just typing SAVE should just tell you how to save, so hard to imagine how that can go wrong. At what point were you doing this?

The Pixie, I had just turned on the light in the basement, I may have x'ed the couple of items there but had not moved the crates.
I typed SAVE and that was the reponse I got. I think it is the comment after moving the crates and going west. It looks similar. There was also something about not folowing the suggestion regarding filenames too.
When I reloaded the game, the apple was still there even though I had eaten it before saving.

I saw another couple of typos after the reload but I didn't capture them. I'll do that later tonight or tomorrow.
(Do you want to know about all the typos? Or do I just look for obvious bugs?)
So far I'm impressed with the way it handles everything. Is there a doc anywhere explaining what is required in the way of programming?

Hi R2T1, I hopefully fixed the save issue; it was triggering something that was supposed to happen later. Should be fixed, but will take a few hours for the site to notice.

This game is a nice idea and a great way to showcase Quest 6.

I got as far as getting the crowbar and flashlight, but then the tutorial stopped, so I headed for the lift. The "w" command didn't elicit any response except for repeating my command back at me, so I was stuck.

Thanks. SAVE now seems to work as you intended.

I have now got the elevator to work BUT...

  1. The location heading says 'The elevator' and the description says 'The lift...' however it can only be called elevator and not lift.
  2. No mention of buttons in the description (they do show on the lefthand pane but I wasn't looking there so didn't see them)
    I only noticed them when I went back and redid this part again.

In the office, the following errors occurred...

X Professor
Curiously his hair is neither white nor wild.{ifNot:Professor_Kleinscope:flag: He

x window
The control rod repository is a cross between a shelf and a cradle; it is attached to the wall like a shelf, but shaped like a cradle to hold the control rod.

look under computer
Failed to find starting curly brace in text processor (nv:char:be:true} sure there's nothing there.)
nv:char:be:true} sure there's nothing there.

use crowbar
You put the crowbar to the padlock, and give a pull. The padlock breaks.

The intention here was to use the crowbar to pry the painting off the wall looking for the PIN.


When you pick up the torch it should say: "Now it is calling it a flashlight? So anyway, we have a torch, we can now take a proper look in the basement." Did that not happen? I have just checked, and it does for me.


Thanks. I have uploaded a new game version 1.2, not sure when it will appear.

"The intention here was to use the crowbar to pry the painting off the wall looking for the PIN." I have set it so it says you cannot use the crowbar. Is that good enough? I feel the player could as easily want to USE CROWBAR on the Prof or computer or window, so do not want to assume too much.

I think I used the lift the wrong way. I first pressed the up button and then the down button and got off at the same floor.
One problem with me: there are no icons of the items in the left panel, only the box with the broken picture.
I can use 'l' to view the room, I can use 'look box' to check the box, but I can't use 'l box'? 'r box' is not possible either?
In the basement you can 'turn off torch' but not 'turn off t'.
In the basement I take everything and try to dress everything with 'wear all'. I get the message
In text processor findSubject, could not find a key called 'garment'. [USB stick: {nv:char:can't:true} wear {ob:garment}.]'.

Ok. I have now completed the turorial.
However, x window still gives this response...
'The control rod repository is a cross between a shelf and a cradle; it is attached to the wall like a shelf, but shaped like a cradle to hold the control rod.'
There a still quite a few typos throughout, so I would need to go over it again more thoroughly to find them and then still not get them all.

Okay, I've gone through it now. One thing at the end confuses me personally. You have to find the right words, although you could do everything with 'use'.

> use crowbar
There is nothing to use the crowbar on here.
> destroy window with crowbar
You strike the window with the crowbar, breaking the glass. You take a moment to knock away the remaining jagged shards in the frame.

> use rope with desk
You can't see anything you might call 'rope with desk' here.
> tie rope to desk
You tie the rope to the desk.

Edit: another suggestion: it should somehow be possible to output the transcript at the end of the game

I agree there was a bit of guess the verb throughout and especially towards the end.
The ability to get a transcript would also be a nice touch too.
Would we be able to see the source code for this or is it still too early?

Where are the save games stored? Is it possible to delete them?

I will look at corrections later, but...

R2T1, you can do transcripts. Type SCRIPT for more details.

The source code can be found here:

Although it is a simple game, adding the tutorial makes it a lot more complicated. A simpler example would be Cloak of Darkness:

Thanks for that.
I still don't fully understand the syntax for JS but I am able to read it and get an understanding of what is going on.
I'll try the SCRIPT command and see what I get.

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