Inform 7 Home Page / Documentation

§8.2. Ships, Trains and Elevators

This section covers vehicles whose interior consists of at least one entire room. Moving into this room constitutes boarding: there is then some pause while it travels: moving out again disembarks at a different location. The only complication arising is how the player controls the journey (by talking to someone? by pressing buttons? by steering?).

The Unbuttoned Elevator Affair provides the simplest possible whole-room vehicle, which ferries between two fixed points. If you are at one of these, it must be the other one you want to get to, so there is no need for controls.

Dubai is a much more elaborate elevator, with many possible destinations, chosen using buttons inside the elevator.

Empire simulates a train journey. Here there are no controls as such, but the train passes through a sequence of stops spaced apart in time, so the player chooses an exit by getting out at the right moment.

On a very large, slowish craft such as a cruise liner, we are not so much travelling in a vehicle: it's more as if we are visiting a whole building, which becomes our world for the (probably long) duration of the journey. The liner steers around in long, slow curves, changing its orientation in the water, so that (if we think of "north" as a strictly magnetic matter, anyway) north is constantly rotating: something we don't notice on board because our own reference points, provided by the ship itself, stay fixed relative to ourselves. Because of this, some ships in IF are navigated using FORE, AFT, PORT and STARBOARD directions rather than NORTH, EAST, SOUTH and WEST: see Fore.

* See Bicycles, Cars and Boats for smaller conveyances

arrow-up.png Start of Chapter 8: Vehicles, Animals and Furniture
arrow-left.png Back to §8.1. Bicycles, Cars and Boats
arrow-right.png Onward to §8.3. Animals


*ExampleThe Unbuttoned Elevator Affair
A simple elevator connecting two floors which is operated simply by walking in and out, and has no buttons or fancy doors.

A train which follows a schedule, stopping at a number of different locations.

Understand "fore", "aft", "port", and "starboard", but only when the player is on a vessel.

An elevator which connects any of 27 floors in a luxury hotel.