Appendix E: Altering the World

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Appendix E: Altering the World

Post by shadowgate » 30 Jun 2019, 15:54

Avatars have two means of changing the world in a temporary way. Each one has its pros and cons for use, and as an Avatar, you will have to decide which one works best for you for any given situation.

The first is Grafitti. This command was developed by Garrett and allows you to temporarily or semi-permanently update the 'short' and 'long' of a room. This does not effect anything in the room but what a player will see when they type <look> or <peer (direction)>. Because of this, grafitti is not always the solution you need. After all, it will seem very strange to the players if you describe the rocks as being natural stone and when they type <look stone> it comes up as highly refined stone. However, adding some soot to the walls, or fire damage to the street, can be a quick and effective way to help add flavor and intensity to your plot.

Grafitti is bolstered by several commands, these commands and how to use grafitti will be outlined further on in their own chapter.

The second ability was designed by Ares. This command is called Makeroom and it does exactly what its name implies. It creates an actual room within which you can fully decorate and prepare. With makeroom, you have full control of how the room looks, what can be found in the room, where it leads and how the players interact with it.

Makerooms are not part of the 'real world'. They are housed in an Avatar's directory (/d/av_rooms/(avatarname)/) and, as such, are warded against teleport and magical scrying to prevent other players from ending up in them unannounced or unwanted. Because they are temporary rooms, they also vanish when an Avatar logs out and will eject any PCs within the rooms out into the real world.

As mentioned, there are draw backs to using Makerooms, but there are also many bonuses for using them as well. Just as with Grafitti and it's host of commands. Further on, I will detail both commands fully. Along with the responsibilities that you take on by using either command.

As an Avatar, you will have to decide when and if you need either command. There is no hard rule that says you have to use either, but they provide you with yet another tool that allows you to improve and increase the pleasure of the story you are telling.

Because both programs can be testy, and because both programs can create frustrating errors for you or the mud, before you continue with this addendum, you should have your trainer show you some of their grafitti and makeroom areas to demonstrate the difference and details. Once you've seen both in action, you can then continue on to how to make each work.
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Re: Appendix E: Altering the World

Post by shadowgate » 30 Jun 2019, 15:55

Grafitti

Grafitti, as mentioned above, was created by Garrett to, in part, help avatars effect the world by placing visual effects and results into the game itself. Grafitti is 99.9% of the time a temporary effect. While some Grafitti remains in place for months or even years, it is rarely left there forever. Anything you want actually, physically changed in game as a permanent effect should be cleared through the Wizards and they will update the room for you, including adding things like <look> objects that players can investigate.

These effects come about for many reasons, here is an example of just a few:

1) A player sets fire to one of the rooms in the Crown and Castle. A group of players puts the fire out and saves the building, but one of the rooms is charred and the others are smoke filled. You use <grafitti edit> to alter the appearance of each room in order to show the damage.

A week later, some players come along and help clean up the inn, restoring it back to its original design. At this point you remove your <grafitti clean> or <grafitti clear>.

2) You're getting ready to have a celebration at one of the local temples. You want to add flowers, ribbons and other such festivities to the room. Using <grafitti set> you rewrite the entire long description, keeping the general appearance of the room but decorating it up so that the festival preparations are clear. (Note this can take some time if you have a high color coded room to redo, plan in advance if possible.)

3) A meteor lands in the forest of Deku and you need to mark where it landed. Using <grafitti edit> you mark up the main room to show the crater and then trail back a few rooms showing the path of destruction.

4) You need a meeting room quick and decide to use an already in-game room to serve you. The problem is, that room's description is nothing like your original design. Therefore you quickly use <grafitti set> to redo the room to suit and lead the players to it. They'll have to suspend disbelief a little since they probably know what was there originally, but it can be a quick/dirty way to have that "secret room" available quickly.

5) You need to foreshadow an event or set up a plot hook, so you head into the echo mountains and use <grafitti edit> to leave indications of slime trails and pools of blood laying around. Then sit back and wait for some PC to send in an avmail asking to investigate it.

And so forth. There are tons of reasons for using graiftti. It's highly useful and far quicker then the <makeroom> command. It also remains in game and accessible regardless if you're on or not. Grafitti offers a huge amount of adaptability for your plots without requiring too much time.

So now, lets look at how each command works:

The four things you can effect with grafitti:

Short = grafitti set short (text)
This is the room's short description. It is what is seen in brief movements which most players use when they're running around. It's also what shows up on <peer> commands and the information shown in your <recall locations> list for the spell casters. Altering the Short of a room is an excellent way to catch their attention. If a new area is being built and you want to alert players to it's impending appearance, perhaps you edit the short to show "a new construction site". Most players, even when running through, will notice the sudden change in their pattern, will back track and check it out. You can also use a room's short for more sinister reasons. "A blood splattered room" for instance.

Long = grafitti set long (text) / grafitti edit long (text)
The room's long description is what you see when you type <look>. That's the large block of text that tells you about the room, clues you in to what is here and how it looks. Most of the time this is what you're changing around with your grafitti command. While you can't add inner-room-looks (add_item() like <look tree>), you can write a good deal here and explain what the players see that is out of the ordinary. Keep in mind however, that not every place in the mud has a long. Sometimes they have a night_long and a day_long instead. So check your work and make sure it's there before you run off, or you may find out that the time of day has changed and vaped all your hard work.

Night_Long = grafitti set long (text) / grafitti edit long (text)
Day_Long = grafitti set long (text) / grafitti edit long (text)
Both of these areas just like a room's long, except that some of the more modern areas of the mud have their descriptions change depending on if it is night or day. Depending on what you want to do, and if the room alters or not, you can be clever and use the shift of day to reveal something that might otherwise be missed. Perhaps your ghostly letters on the wall only come out during the light of the moon. It takes some getting used to, learning when you can use long and when you need to use night_long and day_long. The best trick to figure it out is to edit the room first by typing <grafitti edit night_long> if you get a result, you'll need to set both day and night. If you don't, then you can just set long.


So, now that I've told you about what you can set with Grafitti, lets look at how it actually works.

There are two basic means by which you can effect a room. Either by adding to the room's current description via <grafitti edit> or, you can rewrite the entire room's description (or short) by using <grafitti set>. The one you use is up to you entirely, both work equally well.

grafitti edit
grafitti edit long * grafitti edit night_long * grafitti edit day_long

When you use edit, it will kick you into something that looks a lot like your background editor. This shows the current room's description (and color codes) and then prompts you to add more. When you're done, you use the familiar ** finish command to exit the editor and you will find that your added information is at the bottom of the room's description.

You'll notice that there is no <grafitti edit short>, this is because the short can only be <set>.

grafitti set
grafitti set long * grafitti set night_long * grafitti set day_long * grafitti set short

The grafitti set command works more like the <praise> command, in that you have to enter it all as one long block. Grafitti set allows you to totally rewrite the entire room's description, like laying down a fresh canvas and painting a totally new picture. As noted above, this can be good for many of the things you'll use grafitti for, but it's not always necessary. Sometimes, an edit is not only as appropriate, but also is quicker.

To input grafitti set, you type the string of the command grafitti set short and then the text you want to appear. Like these examples:

grafitti set short A blood splattered room

grafitti set long This room is awash in blood! The walls are splattered with splotches and sprays that have stained everything from the dainty pink window covering to the bright white paint of the walls. Even the floor is saturated, although it is the bed which holds the most blood. The silk sheets of the bed are torn and ripped, appearing to have been cut with a sharp blade, a thick pool of mostly dried blood lingers in the center, vaguely humanoid in shape. Around the four posts of the bed, you can see the remains of rope still tied, restrains for the poor soul who suffered here.

As you can see, its all one long string and when you hit return it completely overwrites what was in the room before.

grafitti save
Now that you have put your grafitti up, lets look at how you keep I there. The command is simple and you should get used to using it often. <grafitti save> should be typed after every time you use <grafitti set> or <grafitti edit>. This saves your changes immediately and preserves them through room resets, which can come quickly and without warning. There's nothing like writing up a perfect room appearance, forgetting to save, bringing your PCs into the room and them seeing nothing different. Oops!

As in any game, save often!

grafitti clean / grafitti clear / grafitti remove
grafitti clear long * grafitti clear short * grafitti clear day_long * grafitti clear night_long * grafitti clean * grafitti remove long * grafitti remove short * grafitti remove day_long * grafitti remove night_long

So you saved and the effect isn't what you wanted. Or maybe you've finished with the room and now want to revert it to what it originally was. To do this, you'll use either <grafitti clean>, <grafitti remove> or <grafitti clear>. I'm putting these two together as they basically do the same thing. They clean up your room, removing one or all elements depending on which one you use.

<grafitti clean> removes all changes in the room, both to the short and long (regular, day or night) and is useful if you've made changes to everything.

<grafitti clear (what)> only removes what you tell it to remove. So if all you want to remove is the short but not the long, you can type <grafitti clear short> and it will revert to its original short.

<grafitti remove> is pretty much like <grafitti clear> and can be used the same way.

I'll also point out that if you <grafitti edit> it will revert to the original text so you can edit fresh, or just type ** and you will get your original room setting back. Sometimes you need to do this first and then <clean/clear>. Usually this is a case of <grafitti> that has sat around for a while. After a while the mud forgets that it's only temporary and sort of achieves the old information. By <grafitti edit>ing and then clearing you can force the room to remember its original information and then revert back. A handy trick for that stuff you leave laying around a while.

And that's grafitti. There is one more command that is included on the <help grafitti> and this is <grafitti nosave> which is used to tell the mud that when it reboots or resets the room that it should remove the grafitti. After almost a year of using grafitti, I've yet to need this. If you don't want your grafitti to stay, then just don't save it. Room reset or a reboot will nuke it eventually.

Finally, there are some rooms that just wont take grafitti. No, they haven't been sprayed with that anti-spray-paint stuff, they are what are called 'virtual rooms'. This means that instead of there being 500 rooms in the shadow desert, there is only one (plus a few key spots along the road that are actual rooms). The mud keeps a map and figures out where you are, sending you the virtual information. You look like you're moving, but you're not. This is similar to what happens with the ocean as well. There are other places, but those two are the two main ones that wont hold grafitti. Give it a try, you'll see what we're talking about.

So now you know it all, practice it in your avatar workroom or in other places in the mud where it wont really effect things. Use each of the commands to get a feel for them.


**Note: There is also a command called <grafitti reedit (what)> which requires knowledge of how to use the program called ed. Ed requires a whole other lesson, therefore it is not included here. The reason for using <grafitti reedit> would be fore things like correcting a typo or fixing a color. Most people use copy/paste anyway when doing this stuff, so just using the main commands can accomplish the same thing w/o having to enter a difficult to navigate editor you may be unfamiliar with.


Smell & Listen Edits
Also of interest are two new commands (4/08) which provide a temporary change to the smell and listen portions of a room.

set_smell ('whatever')

and

set_listen('whatever')

Typing these commands will allow you to alter the applicable code of the room until reboot. At reboot, these changes are lost, unlike how the rest of grafitti works.
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Re: Appendix E: Altering the World

Post by shadowgate » 30 Jun 2019, 15:55

Makeroom Chapter 1

Makeroom is at its most basic form a template for creating rooms to a specific format, but it is so much more then that really. Makeroom gives avatars the ability to truly expand and enhance their stories with just a little extra effort (much of which can be recycled later on). Makeroom allows Avatars (and wizards who might use it for quick needs) to have a room or area quickly available to explore during a plot. Having a dozen or so single one-or-two room generic areas can give you, as an Avatar a great way to enhance your rp and provide a non-standard romp for players who may have been there, done that, in the region your plot is set in.

Are your Players going to go talk to the dead man's family and you don't want that conversation to happen in an Inn or on the street, use makeroom to provide a livingroom for your PCs to deliver the news in. Need a cave for your dragon, use makeroom to create one in a nearby mountain. Want to just add a twist to a clearly over-explored area, insert a few extra rooms here and there that change the regional map for a short time and watch the PCs perk up.

Makeroom provides a wealth of abilities and interaction which, up until now, has been sadly missing from the SG - DM's bag of tricks. But, thanks to Ares, this command is in place now and has given Avs a whole new way to make the world spin.

It should be noted that makeroom is still being worked on and there are a few places where it can be clunky. But it is well worth putting up with those difficult spots to have this tool available to you. Review the following outlines closely and go through the steps as outlined before you try to make your own rooms. At the end, we'll even delete the chamber so you can see how deletion works. Your first time through with this program should be with another Avatar (or wiz) who knows the program. It's not hard to use, but there are a huge number of options and you will likely have questions. I suggest you have a persona logged in at the same time as you're in the editor so that you can communicate your questions to your trainer at any time.

Now, lets get on to the fun:

Alright, first a word from the <help makeroom> file and some warnings:

This is the room generator for avatars to create rooms for plot related play. These rooms are meant to be temporary in nature and will not have a permanent entrance from the mud as a whole. The rooms are set to 'no teleport' (1) to prevent players from remembering locations there and abusing inaccessible rooms where (when) the avatars are not online. DO NOT leave players unattended in the rooms.(2) We are making every effort possible to be sure that people don't get stuck there and cause problems, but it's best to avoid the potential for the problems to begin with.(3) The individual menu prompts contain the help files that you should need to understand the command. If there are any problems or suggestions send a mail to Ares.

Thanks for the warnings Ares! I've made a couple notes (and spelling corrections) to the help file. Let's look at these marked spots.

1) If it is absolutely necessary to have teleport work in one of your rooms, you can temporarily set that room to teleport allowed via your remote. <tpward off> However, you should not do this except for on rare occasions. Maybe a player needs to leave due to RL calling them away. Or maybe you want there to be the ability for "enemy factions" to attack during the plot area. Generally though, you are better off to keep the rooms non teleport so that you can manage them properly.

2) Never, never, never, leave your players in your makerooms. If you have to leave, open a portal out and get them out. If a boot is coming, do not leave them in the room, but rather transport them out to a neutral/safe location. Failure to do this (yeah I did it to Adderlash once) will result in the PC being punted to Shadow. This is usually okay, except for if the PC in question is wanted in Shadow. Then, when they log in, not only are they disoriented, but there's a chance they'll end up in jail. So, do not leave your players in your makerooms.

3) Avatars and other Imms, on the other hand, appear immune to this and can log in or visit your areas as needed. This allows them to make use of your areas, or help you set them up by decorating (via grafitti) or setting up NPCs as needed. Also, you can go to these places to practice with your mobs, check personas against different conditions and so forth.

Okay, help file is finished, lets move onto the next section:
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Re: Appendix E: Altering the World

Post by shadowgate » 30 Jun 2019, 15:55

Makeroom Chapter 2: Using <makeroom>: Before you start.

Makeroom is designed using menus. If you've worked with orb-guards, then you're familiar with some of these. Makeroom is far more in-depth of an editor program and it's very easy to get lost. Until you're used to navigating the program with easy, I highly suggest that you write out all the details of your room on a word/note pad and check your colors and appearance via <echo> before you enter the editor. One mistake and you'll exit the editor without saving, loosing all your hard work. Therefore:

Step one: prepare your room

What do you need to prepare your room? Simple:

1) The short name of your room. This is what appears in the <peer> functions, the <remember location> function and the display as they move about in <brief> mode.

2) Long description of the room. This is the main appearance of the room. It can be as long as you like, though typically three or four sentences is a good minimum to keep in mind. Anything small then that looks a little funny.

3) <look (blah)> items. These are things that you would like your pcs to look at. You can have a string of words that all reference the same display (i.e. walls and wall), or you can have individual items (i.e. chair). Try to avoid using the words that are very common for player's inventory. Putting "book" into your room will make it so that your mages can't look at their spell books, and that can be really difficult on them.

4) <search (blah)> items. These are advance forms of the <look at>'s that you outlined in step 3. When a player types <search (desk)> this will be what you would like returned. At this time, there is no functionality to add in actual items to pick up (without having a wizard add the feature on a case by case basis), but you can use the <search> ability to reveal otherwise missed clues. As an example, when a player searches the desk it might return: "You search the desk and it reveals a letter outlining recent purchases from the Azha merchant Bokara." Now the player will know where to head next.

5) Location that your area will link up at. Know where your rooms will link up to and have that room set in your memory for quick reaching. It's easier to open the exits just before your players are ready to explore them, rather then leaving your area open and risking some random player coming along, seeing it and deciding to explore. If you have monsters outside the general level range for the area in there, you could end up with a dead PC that you have to pause your plot for to go fix. Not only that, but if they're stronger, you may return to your area and learn your super mob is dead.

6) A map. If you have more then two or three rooms, make a map. It can be basic as you want it to be, or as detailed as you like. But lay out how your various rooms will connect so that when you're in the editor you know which rooms link to which and will avoid having mistakes, broken exits or mis-exits.

7) If you're going to have doors, make sure you build your "keys" first (there will be a whole chapter on this later). Have these items already designed and know what their 'name' (-n) is before you start building doors. If you need multiple keys for an area, make them first using <item> object.

8) Room conditions. Know what lighting you want. 0 is base line. 1 is like moonlight, 2 is like daylight. -1 is like overcast/foggy night, -2 is underdark. I would suggest never going over +3 or -3 personally as many players will carry lights with them and you don't want blind players in your carefully made areas. Also, know what kind of weather you want, what types of terrain it is, and so forth (we'll also cover this further on).

9) Have the file names of your rooms sorted out. I highly suggest you use a "region" name and then a number to identify your areas. (dekutower_f1a) for instance tells me that it's the dekutower I'm building and that it is floor 1, room a. (dekutower_hall) is even acceptable as the "dekutower" indicates it's for the tower and not something else. Using something like this over "hall" is, in the long run, more useful as it will keep all of your files organized together and, prevent you from saving over older files. No doubt you'll make several building in your Avatar's life time and will probably want to use hall at least two or three times. Keep in mind though, that you can only have 16 characters for a file name, so you may want to outline your file names on your map as well.

Once you have all these things sorted out and ready, then continue on to the first step:
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Re: Appendix E: Altering the World

Post by shadowgate » 30 Jun 2019, 15:56

Note: Almost every section of this editor has a lengthy explanation blurb. Many are quite long. Rather then retype all that information over and over again, I will be only showing the prompt lines and, where appropriate the additional text. From here out, you should be in the editor and following along. Green is the section we're in. Blue is the return from the mud to prompt you. Red is what you will be typing. Black is my explanations. Take your time, read along both in game and out, and ask your trainer for any help you need.


Makeroom Chapter 3: Using <makeroom>: Your First Room

Lets get started on the program. Type: makeroom

You're now entering the editor and every keystroke you use will count and do something. Some will kick you out of the editor completely, others may erase or send you to a place where you don't want to be.

If you need to communicate outside of the editor while you're in it, prefix your command with the ! exclamation point: !emote smiles !say I'm in an editor, will be with you shortly. !inform you can ask for general parties over the lines, but not for specific people. ... etc. I suggest, however, that you keep a personal duel logged in and use them to converse rather then risk screwing up your rooms.

Welcome to the avatar room generator!
Please select one of the following options:
1> Display your existing rooms.
2> Go to an existing room.
3> Create a new room.
4> Edit one of your existing rooms.
5> Add an exit from a mud room to one of your rooms.
6> Delete one of your existing rooms.
7> Exit from the avatar room generator.


And right away we have a lot of choices. Ares arranged these in an order that makes sense once you've started using the program. But on your first time through, you'll actually skip 1 & 2 and move directly to 3. Once we've built our first room, we can return to 1 and 2 and see how they work.

For now type: 3

This is the room editor. The following list includes all of the options that you are able to modify. The list is color coded to represent its status. Items in red have yet to be completed and items in cyan have already been set. You must set every item before you can save the room. If you make a mistake when you set an item, you can pick that item again to make any corrections. The room will not be saved to file until you choose to do so. NOTE While items that are in cyan have already been set, you can still go back and change them as many times as you want until you save the file. Please make your choice from the following list:

1> >>Name<<.
2> >>Indoors<<.
3> >>Light<<.
4> >>Terrain_type<<.
5> >>Travel_type<<.
6> >>Climate<<.
7> >>Short_desc<<.
8> >>Long_desc<<.
9> >>Smell<<.
10> >>Listen<<.
11> >>Search<<.
12> >>Items<<.
13> >>Exits<<.
14> >>Doors<<.
15> Preview Room.
16> Save room (All items must be completed).
17> Return to Main Menu.
18> Exit from avatar room generator.


Now you are hopefully seeing why I suggest you lay out your areas first before you start working with the editor. There is a lot of information that goes into make each room. And its easy to quickly become confused or lost until you become proficient with the program. Even those of us that have been using it for a while have occasion to forget the little things and break their rooms. So take care and go slow and things will work out better in the end.

Alright, so look over this list. As you see, if you have ASCII on, you'll notice everything is currently in red. When you finish an area it would turn to cyan, indicating you've set it. You can reedit any of the cyan entries if you need to, but its good to have everything already established and set to go so that you do not have to back trace.

1> >>Name<<.

Please enter the file name for your room. This name should contain no punctuation and no spaces. Underscores are allowed. DO NOT put the .c onto the end of the file name, the editor will do that for you. You may enter <q> or <quit> to return to the main menu.

test_1

As you will note, the blurb will indicate that you do not add a .c to the name of the file. This is important as the mud will save your file with the .c regardless of what is there. Thus if you typed test_1.c, your file would save as test_1.c.c which will break your room.

Keep in mind that regardless of where you are in the editor, you can always type <q> or <quit> to exit the editor. Doing this will not save your work. Which can be good sometimes, if you realize you're editing the wrong file and want to undo your edits.

Once you have established a name for your file, you will be able to reference it as: /d/av_rooms/(your avatar)/test1.c

2> >>Indoors<<.

Enter 1 for an indoor room, or 0 for an outdoor room.

1

In this case we're going to make an interior room. This setting changes several things, most important of which is whether or not you will have weather in your room. If you wanted your room to be outside, you would have typed 0


3> >>Light<<.

Enter the light level for the room. -1 is dark for humans and 5 is very bright. Keep in mind that outdoor rooms have adjustments to their light levels during the night time hours so they may not need to begin very dark.

1

As I noted before, the degree of vision changes depending on the lightning setting. In this case, 1 will give ambient light and allow most races to see their surroundings. For those who have darksight, they may require a single casting of <darkness>. Light changes with the time of day, so 1 is still a bit dark during the night, and similar to being inside a house with the curtains open during the day.


4> >>Terrain_type<<.

Enter the terrain type for this room. The terrain type effects things like hunting and foraging, and will eventually determine factors for the global search daemon that will one day be put in. (No, seriously :P). Valid terrain types are: stone building, wood building, hut, nat cave, built cave, built tunnel, nat tunnel, branches, shallow water, deep water, ruins, city, village, cemetery, garden, heavy forest, light forest, jungle, dense jungle, scrub lands, grasslands, hills, savannah, desert, desert dunes, desert rocks, rocky, hills, old mounts, new mounts, swamp, marsh, snow, ice, shallow water, deep water, city, village, cemetery, garden, beach, shore, barren, glacier, meadows, branches, ruins, boats

stone building

Wow, that's a long list and there are a lot of possibilities. Try to pick the closest choice to what you want your room to be. If it's a natural cave or is it a worked cave, is it a stone building or a wood one? Read through the list, and if you're not sure if a particular name is on that list, but you think it is, try typing it in anyway. If it's on the list, it will take the entry. If it is not on the list, then it will reprompt you to provide a true terrain.

Take note that just because your room is designated as water, at this time, it doesn't set your room to require water breathing. This is something you will need a wizard to add to the room's code once it is built.


5> >>Travel_type<<.

Enter the travel type that you would like for this room. The travel type will effect the stamina drain in this room. The number following the travel type is the percentage that the player will loose stamina when they leave the room. The list of travel types are as follows: dirt road: 30, rubble: 80, back alley: 20, rutted track: 30, paved road: 10, ledge: 50, decayed floor: 20, game track: 40, foot path: 20, stairway: 40, fresh blaze: 50, slick floor: 10

slick floor

To the best of my understanding, these take into account the amount of condition drain (the numbers after each section), rather then what they may see if they look at the ground. There may be additional ramifications, so try to pick the closest to what your actual terrain would have. In this case, I'm selecting a slick floor, which has a condition-drain of 10. When in doubt, set it to slick floor.


6> >>Climate<<.

Enter the climate for this room. This will determine the average temperature and the weather for the room. Valid choices are :arctic, temperate, tropical, mountain, desert

arctic

Not as many choices here as there have been, but its still important to take care with your selections. Especially when you're using outdoor rooms. The temperatures will be different, the chance of having cloud cover will be different and, I believe, that some of the regions may drain on player's condition levels. When in doubt, set it to temperate which is the neutral.


7> >>Short_desc<<.

Enter the short description for this room.

%^BOLD%^%^WHITE%^A stone chamber%^RESET%^

Keep this to just a few words that describe the basic room's description. A stone chamber, a sloped hill, a long stretch of sandy beach. Etc. You can use color here, and should try to use a color that isn't used a lot in the Long part of your room's description, as this will help things stand out a bit. Don't forget the %^RESET%^ at the end so that you don't end up with some strange color bleed. In fact, get used to putting %^RESET%^ at the end of everything you do which involves color code. It’s a good habit to get into.


8> >>Long_desc<<.

To prevent errors with long descriptions overflowing, the long desc gets broken up into lines that are 200 characters long. In normal writing this poses no problems and it will not even be noticed in the final room description. However, if you happen to have a color code at the line break it could possibly not work properly. You won't be able to see for sure until you have saved the file and go to the room. If it happens, you can try rewording a little, or moving your color code to fix the problem. Enter the long description for this room.

%^RESET%^This chamber is made from carved stones that have been carefully fit together. Some form of %^BOLD%^%^BLACK%^pale gray mixture %^RESET%^has been applied between the stones in order to keep them together. The floor is similarly made, though the ceiling appears to be constructed out of %^ORANGE%^wood %^RESET%^and %^YELLOW%^thatch.%^RESET%^

Remember that your Long is meant to provide a good idea of what is in the room. But it doesn't have to give every detail that might be found within the room. Those can be saved for later during items and searches. Color can be applied and to the best of my knowledge this does not have a limit to the number of characters you can put in. All must be in a single paragraph however, and you should try to avoid making it such a big blurb of text that your players get lost in the text. Three or four lines of text for most rooms suffices, with about twice that for the more interesting rooms. With more for the truly special rooms as needed.

Take note of the highlighted part about how your color code can become broken if your color fits into the string at the wrong point. Since you have to type everything as one paragraph, you'll have to either count the characters and make sure your color code doesn't break, or to put it in, and check for errors, correcting as needed.


9> >>Smell<<.

Enter the scent that players smell in this room.

The air is stuffy and closed.

Scent defaults to %^ORANGE%^ coloring, so if you want your scent to have a different color, you should add it here. And, if you break your scent up with color code, be sure to reset the rest of your line to the original color, otherwise it will look strange going from %^ORANGE%^ to %^BLUE%^ to %^RESET%^ in colors.[/color]


10> >>Listen<<.

Enter the listen for this room.

The beating of your heart pounds in your ears.

Like Scent, Listen also has a set color. This is %^GREEN%^. Like Scent, you should be careful about switching colors back and forth to prevent things from looking odd.


11> >>Search<<.

Please enter your first search in the format: search_term*what the player will see when they search. IE: footprint*You find a footprint in the sand. If you do not want any searches, enter a blank line, or **. To delete your searches and start over, enter <delete>

walls*%^BOLD%^%^WHITE%^You look the walls over and see that someone has carved their initials here. They must have been trapped here too.%^RESET%^

wall : You look the walls over and see that someone has carved their initials here. They must have been trapped here too. added as a search for this room. enter <done> or <finished> if you are finished adding searches, or type another search to add more. Remember to use the format: search*message received.

done

Confirmed, saves for this room are as follows:

wall : You look the walls over and see that someone has carved their initials here. They must have been trapped here too.


Search items have to be done one at a time. Therefore, if you wish to allow them to <search wall> and <search walls> then you would need to have a line for both "wall" and for "walls". The editor will prompt you each time to insert a new search until you are done. You do not have to enter any searches, however, the editor will not accept a finished room until you've entered the <search> section of the editor and told it you do not want searches. To do this, you would type ** to acknowledge that you do not wish searches at this time. For now, we'll add one.

Syntax for this is as follows: (name of the item to search)*(what the pc will see when they search). Notice how the * creates a break between what the command reference and what the command returns. This applies to items in a similar manner.

Finally, if you start typing search items, and decide that you want to erase them, you have only one option and that is to type <delete>. Be warned, that if you type <delete> you will remove all of your current searches. This is yet another reason why preparing your rooms ahead of time and then inputting them is a good idea. You can write over the top of current search items, but only until you save (#16 on the main menu). Then they are in the file and cannot be written over without deleting first.


12> >>Items<<.

Please enter the first item. Items are things in the room that a player can look at. There are two options for the format that items can be entered. The first format is item*<description of item> IE: chair*This is a sturdy wooden chair. The second format is item,item2,item3*description of item This format is used when several things in the room have the same description. If you do not want any items in this room, enter a blank line or **. To delete your items and start over, enter <delete>

chair,chairs*What are you looking at? There are no chairs in this room. It's empty, didn't you read the description?

({ "chair", "chairs" }) : What are you looking at? There are no chairs in this room. It's empty, didn't you read the description? added as an item for this room. enter <done> or <finished > if you are finished adding items, or type another item to add more.

done

Confirmed, items for this room are as follows:
"chair", "chairs" : What are you looking at? There are no chairs in this room. It's empty, didn't you read the description?


Items are almost the same as search, except that you can include additional items that fall under one category. In this case, you would type: item1,item2,item3*looks like this. Notice how all the items have no spaces between them, but instead are separated by a comma. If you were to put a space between, such as: item1, item2, item3 .. you would end up needing to type look (space)item2, in order for it to work.

The editor will remain in item mode until you tell it to exit. And, similar to the way search works, you have to delete them all if you want to delete one. Although, until you save for the first time, you can go back in and write over the top of items as well. Again, and again, write it before hand and get it ready to go, before you enter it.


13> >>Exits<<.

Please enter your first exit in the format: direction /destination/room
IE: north /d/av_rooms/ares/myroom
Note that you do not need the .c on the end of the file name when making exits. If you do not want any exits in this room, enter a blank line or **. To delete the exits and start over, enter <delete>


north /d/av_rooms/lurue/hub_01

The above exit is designed to take you to the avatar lounge. For now use this destination. Further on I will go over several alternate ways to figure out the long filename for the location you want your exits to point.

north : /d/av_rooms/blah added as an exit for this room. enter <done> or <finished>if you are finished adding exits, or type another exit to add more. Remember to use the format: direction /destination/room or direction hidden /destination/room if you would like for the exit to be invisible to the player.

done

Confirmed, exits for this room are as follows:
north : /d/av_rooms/blah


Exits are reasonably straight forward. You put your destination, followed by a space, followed by the file name. The file name must include the entire file name for our rooms. In this part of the editor you do not need a .c to finish the filename. But how do you get the file name? There are several ways, the first thing you need to do is ask the question: Will my exit exit into the real world (mud), or will my exit exit into another of my av_rooms.

If your exit exits into the real world, the easiest way to get your file name is to go to the room where the exit will exit to, and, with a remote control in hand, type <here>. Alternately, you can use <whereare> which will show a listing of all rooms currently active, along with whose in them. Either will provide you with a list of where you are and give you the long file name.

On the other hand, if you're exiting into one of the av_rooms you made, then the file name will always be: /d/av_rooms/(avatar name)/(room name) So, if you had a room called test_02 and you wanted to go north into that room, you would type: north /d/av_rooms/lurue/test_02 .. replacing "lurue" with your avatar name.

Finally, there is a way to hide your exits. To do this, you add the word "hidden" between the direction and the file name as follows: north hidden /d/av_rooms/lurue/test_02 - Note that your hidden exits cannot be searched for and so you will have to include a way for the players to discover the exit via either your search texts or your look texts. Hidden exits let you have crevices and hidden doors and various other things that you might find in a dungeon or area. Basically, they become your secret doors.

Just remember that hidden exits can be frustrating to players. Not every player is going to speak fluent english and what may be clear to you, may be hidden to them. So keep your hidden exits to a minimum and use them for special effect, rather then just a way to stump the players. Remember as an Avatar your job is to make the game fun, not to frustrate your players or prove just how clever you are. Challenges are good though, so use sparingly.


14> >>Doors<<.

Entering the door editor...
Please choose one of the following options:
1> Show existing doors and locks.
2> Add or edit a door.
3> Add or edit a lock.
4> Delete a door.
5> Delete all doors.
6> Delete a lock from a door.
7> Delete all locks from a door.
8> No Doors for this room, return to editor.
9> Return to Editor.
10> Return to Main Menu.


Yes, that's right, a sub-menu for doors. This is because doors take a lot of work to get just right. There are actually two submenus in this case. One for doors, and one for locks. Later, in their own chapter, I'll address how doors and locks work. For now however, we'll say that we do not want doors in this room.

8

This will return you to the main editor once more and if you have filled in everything correctly you will have all %^CYAN%^ entries. So now we have a few more options.

15> Preview Room.

Does exactly what it says it does. Returns a list of all the stuff in your room that you have put in. File name, smell, sound, in/outdoors, terrain, travel, climate, long, short, search items, look items.

You may need to hit enter a few times in order to scroll through it all. Use this to check your progress and look for errors.

16> Save room (All items must be completed).

Again, exactly what it says it will do. If you want to keep your room, you must use this feature and follow through the following text.

Do you really want to save this room?

yes

Confirmed, writing file /d/av_rooms/lurue/test.c
writing to file /d/av_rooms/lurue/test.c
<<<
Finishing.. file created /d/av_rooms/lurue/test.c. <<<

Note that this will have %^B_RED%^ highlighted text, if both of these do not have the %^B_RED%^ your save failed and the file was lost.

If everything worked right, you will be back at the first <makeroom> editor. I find that it is always helpful to exit the editor every time I finish with a room (or copy a room) before continuing. While Ares says this isn't necessary, sometimes the mud forgets to drop things it should, but exiting and reentering <makeroom> you're less likely to have to worry about artifact like left overs from prior room creations. Likewise, by exiting and reentering, you reset the colors of the editor so that they are all red once again and it will be easier to see which ones you still need to finish.

17> Return to Main Menu.

If you decide not to save your file, you can type this and return to the first room. This is useful if you need to check what you called a file name that you made earlier. As long as you do not exit the <makeroom> editor, you will not loose the file you were editing. But you will need to return to 3> Create a new room in order to continue and save. Because it's easy to type the wrong thing, I suggest, once more, that you plan everything out before you start editing. Then you will not need this function.

18> Exit from avatar room generator.

Leaves the editor fully without a save.

And that is the basics for building a room. I will continue these lessons shortly.
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shadowgate
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Re: Appendix E: Altering the World

Post by shadowgate » 30 Jun 2019, 15:56

Makeroom Chapter 4: Using <makeroom>: Going to your av_rooms

Okay, so now you have built your very first room. But how do you get to it to have a look at it? To see your newly created room we need to use our <makeroom> program again, but this time use another feature of it.

makeroom

Welcome to the avatar room generator!
Please select one of the following options:
1> Display your existing rooms.
2> Go to an existing room.
3> Create a new room.
4> Edit one of your existing rooms.
5> Add an exit from a mud room to one of your rooms.
6> Delete one of your existing rooms.
7> Exit from the avatar room generator.


As you can see, #2 says to go to an existing room. This doesn't just mean your av_rooms, but any room in the mud. It's a very powerful ability, similar to your <recall locations> ability, except that it isn't limited to a small number of rooms. As time goes on you can gather a list of locations that you visit often and use this feature to get you to them, if you would rather leave your <locations> open for immediate plot work. Or, in time, you can build a hub (an av_room that links to all the places you go to regularly). Whatever works for you.

Anyway, lets take a look at what is offered through the first two commands:

1

You currently have these rooms in your directory:
test_01.c

Please select one of the following options.
1> Return to Main Menu.
2> Exit the avatar room generator.


If all you wanted was to know the names of your files and are done, type 2 otherwise, type 1 and return to the editor. As time goes on, you'll build up a list here just as you build up a list in your <objects> folder.

Once you're back at the main menu, its time to go to the file. Since we know the file name now, we know the directory is /d/av_rooms/(avatar name)/test_01.c so:

2


Please type the full path of the room that you wish to move to, including the .c at the end.

/d/av_rooms/(avatar name)/test_01.c

As you can see, you'll need the full name of the room you want to go to. As discussed before, getting this information isn't too hard to do. For your av_rooms, you'll know their names, and if you forget you always have the makeroom "display" (#1) what the files are for you. Alternately, if you know the file name of the location you want to go to, you can type it in here as well. Just be sure to add the .c at the end.

If, for some reason, you type it in incorrectly, the editor will let you know by returning that it was wrong and asking you to try again:

That room either does not exist, or you have misspelled it. Please check your spelling and capitalization. You must include the entire path of the room plus the .c on the end. IE: /d/av_rooms/ares/myroom.c
Please select one of the following options:
1> Enter the file name again.
2> Return to the main menu.
3> Exit the avatar room generator.


If you just had a typo, use 1 and retype the file name. If, you're not sure what the file name is and need to check it using your "display" feature in the editor, then type 2. On the other hand if you need to exit fully from the generator, type 3 and it will end your session in the makeroom editor.

Once you put the information in properly, it will take you to your room and give you a few options with what to do:

Please type the full path of the room that you wish to move to, including the .c at the end.

/d/av_rooms/lurue/test_1.c

Moving to new location...
Displaying room...
A stone chamber
This chamber is made from carved stones that have been carefully fit
together. Some form of pale gray mixture has been applied between the
stones in order to keep them together. The floor is similarly made, though
the ceiling appears to be constructed out of wood and thatch.

The only obvious exit is : north.

Room description shortened for display purposes...
Please select one of the following options:
1> Return to main menu.
2> Exit the avatar room generator.


At this point, you can either look your room over from the safety of the editor (remember you can interact with the world around you using !(action). So if you wanted to test your chairs out, you could type: !look chair and it would return what you would see. You could even type !north and go through the room's exit. However, I would suggest instead, that you use option 2 as this will bring you out in the currently entered room.

2

Exiting from the avatar room generator...

And that's it. Now, when you <look> you'll find yourself in the room you loaded. From there, you can test your settings and your exit to see if it takes you back to the lounge.

Go ahead and check it out and practice a little. A few rooms you can go to are: /d/av_rooms/lurue/test_1.c and /d/av_rooms/lurue/test_2.c

Once you've practiced, return to your workroom (or your trainers, if you don't have a workroom yet) to continue.
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shadowgate
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Re: Appendix E: Altering the World

Post by shadowgate » 30 Jun 2019, 15:56

Makeroom Chapter 5: Using <makeroom>: Cloning your room

So, we have a room, but you mentioned adding doors and hidden passages, how do we do that? It's fairly simple. The major rule of thumb to always remember is: CLONE / RENAME / SAVE / EXIT / EDIT. Always in that order, so that you never screw up your original room. To do this, we begin with the next command on our makeroom list.

4> Edit one of your existing rooms.

Which room would you like to edit? Please enter the full path of the file, including the .c on the end.

/d/av_rooms/(avatar name)/test_1.c

Now you're back in the main editor, but, as you can see, everything is currently %^CYAN%^. This is because the room is completely done and you are in editor mode. The color will not change even if you start making edits. However, that's the next session, so lets not skip ahead.

For cloning a room, the process is simple. We are going to make an exact copy of our first room (test_1) and only change the name (to test_2). Then, we will save, exit the editor and then return. As noted, you must only change the same, save, and exit the editor, otherwise, the way the program works, if you continue editing, it will edit your original file, not the newly created one. To do this:

1

Please enter the file name for your room. This name should contain no punctuation and no spaces. Underscores are allowed. DO NOT put the .c onto the end of the file name, the editor will do that for you. You may enter <q> or <quit> to return to the main menu.

test_2

File name set to test_2. Returning to editor.

Once you have changed the name, the next step is to save and exit from the editor. As with the last steps of making a room, you will use:

16> Save room (All items must be completed).

As we're making a copy, all items are completed and so this will not issue a protest, but save. As before you want to be sure that you see the %^B_RED%^ backlighted confirmation:

16

Do you really want to save this room?

yes

Confirmed, writing file /d/av_rooms/lurue/test_2.c
writing to file /d/av_rooms/lurue/test_2.c
Finishing.. file created /d/av_rooms/lurue/test_2.c.
Welcome to the avatar room generator!


Now exit by using: 7> Exit from the avatar room generator.

Return via makeroom and confirm that your copy took, by using: 1> Display your existing rooms.

1

You currently have these rooms in your directory:
test_1.c test_2.c

Please select one of the following options.
1> Return to Main Menu.
2> Exit the avatar room generator.


Return to the generator by typing: 2

And we'll move on to how to edit your new room to change its appearance around.
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shadowgate
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Re: Appendix E: Altering the World

Post by shadowgate » 30 Jun 2019, 15:57

Makeroom Chapter 6: Using <makeroom>: Editing your room

So now, if you've done things right, you've made two rooms. Both are identical copies of one another, except for their names. Try going to each one and make sure they're both there and accessible. Once you know for sure, start with the next part of this tutorial.

makeroom

Once you're in the editor, we're going to reenter the section for changing a room:

4> Edit one of your existing rooms.

/d/av_rooms/(avatar name)/test_2.c

From here we see a list of cyan entries, indicating that you have completed them all. This is okay though, because we know all the entries are a copy of the first file. From here we can edit a little or a lot.

Typically, if you're cloning a room, you want to keep the basics of the room. Things like lighting, indoor/outdoor, terrain, travel type, climate and often smell and listen. The seven things that you will usually be editing are: long, short, smell, listen, search, items, exits (and doors). However, you can edit anything in that list that you want. If you make a room and find that something is wrong about it, this method is the same for editing any of the numbers from 1-14.

That said, most of the items can be simply written over. Type the number, put in your new information, and hit enter. There are a few though which require more effort. To give you an example, I'll go through the process of changing the seven main items listed above. Once you've finished the full tutorial and want to play around with makeroom, feel free to edit and change to your hearts content.

7> >>Short_desc<<.

Enter the short description for this room.

As you can see, changing the short is as easy as just pasting your new information. Lets change the room's name:

%^GREEN%^My Second Room%^RESET%^

Once you've returned to the main list, type 15 to see that the short has changed. Now, in a similar fashion we'll change the long description.

8> >>Long_desc<<.

To prevent errors with long descriptions overflowing, the long desc gets broken up into lines that are 200 characters long. In normal writing this poses no problems and it will not even be noticed in the final room description. However, if you happen to have a color code at the line break it could possibly not work properly. You won't be able to see for sure until you have saved the file and gone to the room. If it happens, you can try rewording a little, or moving your color code to fix the problem.
Enter the long description for this room.


%^BOLD%^%^BLACK%^Stone walls rise up on three sides of this empty chamber, while the fourth wall is made from a strange dark metal. The smooth, slick surface of the metal makes a startling contrast to the rougher stones that surround it. Cool to the touch, its impossible to tell what it might be made of, though you can almost make out a faint pulsing energy coming from it.%^RESET%^

Great, now that you've hit enter, you should be back to the main editor. Now lets change the smell and listen as well to be more reflective of the room that you are making.

9> >>Smell<<.

Enter the scent that players smell in this room.

There is a faint burning smell here, like heated metal.

10> >>Listen<<.

Enter the listen for this room.

You can hear a very quiet hum coming from the strange metal wall.

And that's it for the easy stuff. For searches and items, the process is similar, however, if you wish to remove something already there, you will have to delete them all. Therefore, I suggest before you use items or search that you use: 15> Preview Room. first. In this way, you'll get a list of all the current searches and items that can be looked at. And thus, if you need to delete your prior work, you can scroll up and use this list to help you rebuild. (copy paste!)

So, just like in the original build, you would enter into the editor.

12> >>Items<<.

Please enter the first item. Items are things in the room that a player can look at. There are two options for the format that items can be entered. The first format is item*<description of item> IE: chair*This is a sturdy wooden chair. The second format is item,item2,item3*description of item This format is used when several things in the room have the same description. If you do not want any items in this room, enter a blank line or **. To delete your items and start over, enter <delete>

If you're going to reenter over the top of any of your current entries, you'll need to first delete the prior ones. In this case, we've changed the wall and need to reference that there are two types of walls.

delete

Now that you've fully cleared the slate, lets add in some new stuff.

wall,walls*%^BOLD%^%^BLACK%^There are three stone walls that look similar to the last room, while one of the walls is made of a smooth slab of metal. Perhaps you could look at the %^RESET%^%^CYAN%^metal wall%^BOLD%^%^BLACK%^ or %^WHITE%^stone walls%^BLACK%^ to get a better look at either.%^RESET%^

({ "wall", "walls" }) : There are three stone walls that look similar to the last room, while one of the walls is made of a smooth slab of metal. Perhaps you could look at the metal wall or stone walls to get a better look at either. added as an item for this room. enter <done> or <finished > if you are finished adding items, or type another item to add more.

stone walls*The stone walls look pretty standard. Cut with rough edges and fit together, the blocks that make it up appear to be built by humans.

stone wall : The stone walls look pretty standard. Cut with rough edges and fit together, the blocks that make it up appear to be built by humans. boldadded as an item for this room.

metal wall*%^BOLD%^%^BLUE%^Smooth and solid, this wall is made from some type of metal you've never heard of before. Touching it shows it to be smooth and warm, although there is a %^BLACK%^ridge%^BLUE%^ that mars the surface at one point.%^RESET%^

metal wall : Smooth and solid, this wall is made from some type of metal you've never heard of before. Touching it shows it to be smooth and warm, although there is a ridge that mars the surface at one point. boldadded as an item for this room. enter <done> or <finished> if you are finished adding items, or type another item to add more.

done

And that takes us back to the main editor. Now, as you can see, I've stacked the Items so that when you just look at wall/walls you will get prompted to look at other things. But, I didn't add in a feature for "ridge". This is because I want to have them search and learn about a secret exit we're going to put in shortly. For now, lets put in the searches. Remember, that we need to delete first our prior items and then add in the new items to be searched.

11> >>Search<<.

delete

Please enter your first search in the format: search_term*what the player will see when they search. IE: footprint*You find a footprint in the sand. If you do not want any searches, enter a blank line, or **. To delete your searches and start over, enter <delete>

ridge*%^BOLD%^%^BLUE%^You search along the wall and find a tiny ridge along the wall. Searching it further, you think this might be the outline of an exit. Only one you can't see. Maybe you can %^RED%^enter%^BLUE^% it and find out what is beyond!%^RESET%^

ridge : You search along the wall and find a tiny ridge along the wall. Searching it further, you think this might be the outline of an exit. Only one you can't see. Maybe you can try and enter it to find out what is beyond! added as a search for this room. enter <done> or <finished> if you are finished adding searches, or type another search to add more. Remember to use the format: search*message received.

wall*%^BOLD%^%^BLUE%^You search along the wall and find a tiny ridge along the wall. Searching it further, you think this might be the outline of an exit. Only one you can't see. Maybe you can %^RED%^enter%^BLUE^% it and find out what is beyond!%^RESET%^

wall : You search along the wall and find a tiny ridge along the wall. Searching it further, you think this might be the outline of an exit. Only one you can't see. Maybe you can try and enter it to find out what is beyond! added as a search for this room. enter <done> or <finished> if you are finished adding searches, or type another search to add more. Remember to use the format: search*message received.

Notice that I used the exact same message, but gave it two options to search? Unlike items you have to put each search item in separately. Therefore, even though it's the exact same, I had to enter it twice and tell it the different items that could be searched.

When you done entering your searches, type done and you'll be back to the main editor once more.

Now we move on to exits. As with 'test_1.c', we already have one exit going north and into the lounge. But we don't really need that exit. So the first thing we'll do is delete it. Just like with items and searches, you begin with delete.

13> >>Exits<<.

delete

Please enter your first exit in the format: direction /destination/room IE: north /d/av_rooms/ares/myroom Note that you do not need the .c on the end of the file name when making exits. If you do not want any exits in this room, enter a blank line or **. To delete the exits and start over, enter <delete>

Now we'll add two exits. The first exit will take you to the test_1.c room. The second exit will be the hidden exit that we told the players they could "enter" with our search.

east /d/av_rooms/(avatar name)/test_1

Remember we don't need the .c for exits. That's the normal room. Now lets add the hidden one.

west hidden /d/dagger/wiz_store2

Once you have entered these, save your room and visit test_2.c to see how it worked out. Look at the features and try going through your exits. You may want to <remember here as test2> so that you can easily get back by typing <go test2>.

After you've played around a bit, try editing test_1.c to add the west room going into test_2.c you will need these exits working fluidly to continue with the next lesson. When you're done, continue on to adding doors and locks.
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