Recording Player Activity

From a game designer perspective, it would be useful to know more about how far each player gets through a game, how long they play, where they get stuck, etc. Is there any way in Quest to save information externally during game play?

I notice that in Guttersnipe: Carnival of Regrets there is a 'complain' command but I assume this is a joke and nothing is actually recorded?


I think it would be great if games could have a high score, recording the players with the top five scores, or if the game has multiple endings, when you complete it yourself you see what endings (or options) other players went for.

Unfortunately with the web site and the game code now split between two different people, I do not see this happening any time soon.


Thanks Pixie, hopefully it will make its way on to someone's to-do list!


You could always let a RL friend play your game with the walkthrough function set on record.
That way you get to see all things type by the player afterwards.
It's not the best of solutions but it is one.
(I had the same thought a while back and asked the same thing)
((If memory serves K.V. had another way of getting all input saved in an external file but you need to ask him about that))


Pertex submitted some code that allows us to do this (I think). I don't know how servers or file-sharing sites work (yet).

I'm 99.999% sure you have to have your own file sharing stuff set up because that sort of stuff is not built into this site.

https://github.com/textadventures/quest/commit/21f005c3a25b2d06b221209a313baf884aaf218f


Also, it looks like the next release of Quest may have a transcript feature. This would not save a transcript to a file, but it would open the transcript in a popup window which has a print button. The player could print to a PDF to save the file.

If a player begins their command with *, Quest will treat that as a debugging note.

I have modified the function that handles commands so it prints "Noted." when this happens. This way, I can open a transcript PDF in my browser and search for "Noted" to jump to debugging messages entered by testers.


The More You Know:
The transcript isn't saved to a file due to differences between the desktop player and the web player and because the HTML, CSS, and JS stuff which is added and/or modified during play would all be added to a single HTML file, and this usually doesn't produce legible HTML transcript files. And converting the game's HTML to plain text produces a transcript with visible HTML code, which, of course, is no good.


You can also use this as the script for a PRINT command:

JS.print()

If you clear the screen during play, this may not pan out well, though.


mrangel brought the Google docs and spreadsheets and such to my attention, too.

You can set up a Google Form for players to submit and link to that from your game.

http://textadventures.co.uk/forum/samples/topic/j9evupa4h0c6ua7_bh9twa/reporting-a-bug-from-in-game-via-email-an-example#8d72fb7b-451b-4b2c-8c1c-cdc554feca75

You can also set it up so the player can send an email with a preloaded subject and body. This depends on the player having set up their browser so it will work with mailto URLs, which is a coin toss. So I think the Google Forms approach is better. But you can see how to do it via email if you scroll up from the Google Forms post, to which I linked above.


Pertex submitted some code that allows us to do this (I think)

You are right. With the next version you can call external PHP-scripts. With that you can save information on your own webserver. I provide some scripts to provide e.g. a highscore functionality or to generate walkthroughs from the player's input. Of course, this only works if the player has an online connection, but that should be standard nowadays.


I provide some scripts to provide e.g. a highscore functionality or to generate walkthroughs from the player's input.

That sounds absolutely amazing!


Thanks KV and Pertex. I look forward to the next version and in the meantime will experiment with 'mailto'.


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