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§3.3. Position Within Rooms

Inform's division of geography into "rooms" is a good compromise for most purposes. The rooms are cut off from each other by (imaginary or actual) walls, while all of the interior of a given room is regarded as the same place.

Suppose we want things to happen differently in different corners of the same room? Inform can already do this a little, in that the player can be inside an enterable container or on an enterable supporter. For instance:

Instead of opening a door when the player is on the bed, say "You can't reach the handle from the bed."

If we need to have divided-up areas of the floor itself, the standard approach is to define a small number of named positions. We then need to remember at which of these locations the player (or something else) currently stands.

Further Reasons Why All Poets Are Liars allows the player to be in different parts of a room by standing on a box which can be in different places: thus only the box needs an internal position, not the player, simplifying matters neatly.

Another interesting case is when one room is entirely inside another (such as a hut in a field, or a booth in a large convention hall), so that the exterior of the room should be visible from another location. Starry Void gives a simple demonstration of a magician's booth that can be examined from the outside, opened and closed, and entered to reach a new location.

* See Continuous Spaces and The Outdoors for making the space between rooms continuous

* See Combat and Death for the use of position in a room in determining combat maneuvers

* See Entering and Exiting, Sitting and Standing for automatically getting up from chairs before going places

* See The Human Body for letting the player take different postures on furniture or on the floor

* See Furniture for cages, beds, and other kinds of enterable supporters and containers

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*ExampleFurther Reasons Why All Poets Are Liars
The young William Wordsworth, pushing a box about in his room, must struggle to achieve a Romantic point of view.


***ExampleStarry Void
Creating a booth that can be seen from the outside, opened and closed, and entered as a separate room.