AGDInteractive - Sierra Adventure Game Remakes Forum

 QFG2: Communication Poll
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Author:  Erpy [ Mon Feb 18, 2002 12:38 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: parser parser parser

Above post = just your opinion<br><br><!--EZCODE IMAGE START--><img src=""><!--EZCODE IMAGE END--> <p></p><i></i>

Author:  Chixdiggit [ Wed Feb 20, 2002 5:28 pm ]
Post subject:  re: parser parser parser parser parser

Above post = rude & unnecessary <p></p><i></i>

Author:  Lopez [ Wed Mar 06, 2002 2:08 am ]
Post subject:  Text Parser

I come from the Old school Sierra-On Line school. <br>The games were fun and exciting, the Text Parser added to the adventure. Sure it made you spell correctly and choose your words carefully, but it was MUCH more fun than choosing between three choices! I hated the point and click interface minus the text parser! <br>PLEASE BRING IT BACK! <br>PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE! <br><br> <p></p><i></i>

Author:  Chixdiggit [ Fri Mar 08, 2002 10:58 am ]
Post subject:  hey

Someone who finally gets it! <p></p><i></i>

Author:  TheHipCat [ Sat Mar 16, 2002 10:54 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: My opinion, for what it's worth

Maybe this has been suggested and I overlooked it, but perhaps the point and click interface with a text box in the dialogue menu would work. Such as:<br><br>Ask about:<br> * Shapeir<br> * Kattas<br> * Palace<br> * [_____________]<br><br>Where they would click on the text box and it would then allow them to type whatever they wanted. <p></p><i></i>

Author:  Xorcist [ Sun Mar 17, 2002 4:52 am ]
Post subject:  From a programming standpoint...

I would stay stick with point n' click. Not only will it make language translation easier, but if you use a selective menu system (and keep your flags in check) it can be just as effective as a text parser. As far as easter eggs and special sequences go.<br><br>Someone mentioned you wouldn't be able to say "yield" or "get sword". But you wouldn't have to. Those things could be put into the interface (by clicking "get" on the sword or "talk" on the enemy) or through a menu, such as asking if the user wants to yield or attempt to grab sword (similar to the way some QFG5 menus were set up).<br><br>As for the easter eggs, clicking items (or other icons) on a person can induce a different dialog than if the talk icon was clicked on them. <br><br>Handling mispelled words is a downfall of a parser and should not be done. Armoir, Amuire, Armwar should not mean Armoire. I could type "ask about the weathre" till the cows come home, but it should never get a response about the "weather". A point n' click interface will immediately erradicate this problem. Of course you won't be able to ask about anything and everything (which is the "fun"), but even in a parser 90% of all dialog will result in something along the lines of "I don't understand 'whatever'". I can't count how many times I've asked a side topic, about something the character I was talking to just said, and he didn't even know what I was talking about... yet he just refered the topic himself. Which is why that parser "fun" and sometimes turn into "frustration".<br><br>A selective, point n' click, menu system will allow for some dialogs to be hidden until they are needed (or properly accessed) while not forcing the user to figure out the right question, spelling, or wording. A simple main "ask about" / "tell about" dialog can be utilized in full without losing a lot of what the parser offered. Clicking an item on certain individuals might bring up the same dialog but add on "show item" / "give item" / "sell item".<br><br>If someone would like to give me an instance of something that could not be handled using a point 'n click interface. I'd gladly take on the challenge of figuring out how it could be done.<br> <p></p><i>Edited by: <A HREF=>Xorcist</A> at: 3/17/02 4:39:04 am<br></i>

Author:  Erpy [ Sun Mar 17, 2002 6:12 am ]
Post subject:  Re: From a programming standpoint...

I agree that point&click is better for people with less experience in adventure gaming. Some people don't like the point&click system, but I've seen even more people who don't like the parser system very much.<br><br><!--EZCODE IMAGE START--><img src=""><!--EZCODE IMAGE END--> <p></p><i></i>

Author:  Anonymous Game Creator 2 [ Sun Mar 17, 2002 2:14 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: From a programming standpoint...

Ahhh.. I'm beginning to wish we never made this poll now.. I'm more conflicted than ever about this!:)<br><br>The thing that the communication parser would offers over the point and click system, is a deeper level of immersion in the game, and a more challenging experience. There's no denying that with a text parser, YOU have to do the thinking when it comes to conversation. Whereas with a point and click menu, the options are just presented to you as soon as they are flagged to appear by the game. Most people prefered QFG1EGA over QFG1VGA for this reason, and I'm certain that QFG2 would feel like a shorter game if it used a point and click dialog interface. <p></p><i></i>

Author:  Xorcist [ Sun Mar 17, 2002 3:57 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: From a programming standpoint...

That's true. But also keep in mind the QFG series are heavily time based. Unlike most of Sierra's older games, in QFG you often had to wait for a specific day to roll around before certain events could take place (even if you knew what had to be done). The rest of the time was spend mingling and performing research, mini-quests, and training (raising your skills). Afterwhich certain newer dialogs may appear, while older ones will disappear.<br><br>With the early AGI games the parser was absolutely necessary... without that extra time spend figuring out just what needed to be typed (and memorizing what you've been told), the game would have been over in a flash. And in fact today they are since most of us have played them and know what needs to be done (I can breeze through your remake of KQ1 in no time... cause I know most of what needs to be done already). Of course this doesn't hold water with people who have never played the games (but that's an audience issue).<br><br>Consider this though, add a thought process to the game. Set it up so that certain dialogs, after you've followed them, get replaced. Say I ask Abdule about Ad-Avis... he could give a long winded detailed answer. Then if I ask about Ad-Avis again, he says "we've already talked about that". It'll require the user to jot down notes and retain some knowledge of the dicussions he's had. So it's not as simple as just going over the tree again.<br><br>You could compliment that with added elements not in the original. Let's say I talk to this katta every now and then. We'll don't you think he'd get to know me? Especially if I tell him a bit about myself... maybe for the first few discussions he doesn't have much to say. But after a while he opens up and gives me some good info. And don't just base it on a discussion by discussion basis. Add in the element of different days. So I can't just click "talk" on him three times and immediately get the info I want. I'd have to do it over the course of three days (Let time play a bigger part in this remake).<br><br>These are all things Sierra has used at one point or another in their SCI games. You might even go so far as to add in a bais (or charisma) system. If I offend someone they won't talk to me about certain things. If my honor is very high maybe they'll be a bit more willing to share information. If I talk to someone too much they might get tired of me and say "please do not bother me, I am busy". Make the game more about your actions and not just asking the right questions. I mean that's the big trade off between text parsers and trees.<br><br>I'd personally would like to see this game go point n' click. But it really is your call. If you want to be faithful to the original game don't change the system. But if you do change the system make sure you add in elements that will compinsate for the lack of parser required thought. Either way I'll support you guys 100%. I just love the fact one of my all time favorite games is going to be remade.<br><br><br><!--EZCODE ITALIC START--><i> {You know what this game really needs is an active database of the running dialogs. Of course that might be over-doing it.}</i><!--EZCODE ITALIC END--> <p></p><i>Edited by: <A HREF=>Xorcist</A> at: 3/17/02 10:09:10 am<br></i>

Author:  RPG Elsa Von Spielburg [ Sun Mar 17, 2002 7:56 pm ]
Post subject:  Point&Click here!

I'm with the point and click idea, like with Qfg 3 <!--EZCODE EMOTICON START :D --><img src= ALT=":D"><!--EZCODE EMOTICON END--> <br><br>Also I wouldn't mind if the Prince of Shapeir looked like he does in Qfg 3 either <!--EZCODE EMOTICON START :) --><img src= ALT=":)"><!--EZCODE EMOTICON END--> <br><br>And I love the idea of the characters pictures (when they talk and their faces appear close) to be like the ones in Qfg 3 - the pictures in Qfg 3 really rock - so realistic and pretty! <!--EZCODE EMOTICON START :D --><img src= ALT=":D"><!--EZCODE EMOTICON END--> <p></p><i></i>

Author:  RPG Elsa Von Spielburg [ Sun Mar 17, 2002 8:12 pm ]
Post subject:  Actually Xorcist...

I think the extra time in Qfg games is needed <!--EZCODE EMOTICON START :) --><img src= ALT=":)"><!--EZCODE EMOTICON END--> Because the Hero could use it, to practice his skills and abilities in order to improve himself and be ready to face the dificulties ahead him <!--EZCODE EMOTICON START :) --><img src= ALT=":)"><!--EZCODE EMOTICON END--> This is one of the biggest ideas in RPG games or at least in Qfg series. If the Hero doesn't improve then he ll end up getting stuck while trying to do something that requires a higher level of skill. And the only choice will be to go back and try to find time for improvement <!--EZCODE EMOTICON START :) --><img src= ALT=":)"><!--EZCODE EMOTICON END--> <br><br>Does this make any sense? <!--EZCODE EMOTICON START ;) --><img src= ALT=";)"><!--EZCODE EMOTICON END--> <br><br> <p></p><i></i>

Author:  Lendorien [ Mon Mar 18, 2002 9:55 am ]
Post subject:  A mix...

I'm just going to throw my two cents in. I'd do the point +Click/parser mix. Have a dialog tree, then an option to type something extra to talk about. If it was wished, the dialog tree could contain all the information needed to play and finish the game, but the parser option would allow a player to ask about things that would broaden the scope of the game world.<br><br>Only being able to ask about things in a dialog tree really limits the scope of a game world. <br><br>For me, that's the one thing I miss about parser. Clever and imaginative conversation in games has virtually died because of it. The wider viariety of choices and the need for imagination has become second to "making things as easy to use as possible." <p></p><i></i>

Author:  Xorcist [ Mon Mar 18, 2002 11:22 am ]
Post subject:  Re: A mix...

The only problem I see with that is, just doing one or the other is hard enough. Combine the two and you've just double the amount of work that needs to be done. I'd rather see two complete seperate versions rather than a mix of the two. Keep in mind if they want language portabilty the point n' click is going to be a lot easier. Where any parser interface will require them to either have a word selection list (along the lines of Lucas Arts) or do a complete rewrite to make sure grammar and syntax are correct for each language. <p></p><i></i>

Author:  RPG Elsa Von Spielburg [ Mon Mar 18, 2002 4:34 pm ]
Post subject:  Well.........

I think Xorcist is right about this matter. Just point and click should be fine. Besides it's a remake, people need to see something different. Take Qfg1 and Qfg1 Remake for example <!--EZCODE EMOTICON START :D --><img src= ALT=":D"><!--EZCODE EMOTICON END--> <p></p><i></i>

Author:  Charles269 [ Wed Mar 20, 2002 12:01 am ]
Post subject:  It's not as difficult as you think.

<!--EZCODE QUOTE START--><blockquote><b><i>Quote:</i></b><hr> Where any parser interface will require them to either have a word selection list (along the lines of Lucas Arts) or do a complete rewrite to make sure grammar and syntax are correct for each language.<hr></blockquote><!--EZCODE QUOTE END--><br><br>I hope nobody is talking about a complex typing interface... because that's not what I was talking about earlier...<br><br>Using the LucasArts style (word selection list) is tantamount to a point&click interface... except instead of icons, you are using words. It's a slight variation in the way you click the icons on objects, but not much more than that.<br><br>You would <!--EZCODE BOLD START--><b> not</b><!--EZCODE BOLD END--> need to do a complete re-write of grammer and syntax for each language if you used a keyword system.<br><br>Using TheHipCat's example, above<br><!--EZCODE QUOTE START--><blockquote><b><i>Quote:</i></b><hr> Ask about:<br>* Shapeir<br>* Kattas<br>* Palace<br>* _____________<br><hr></blockquote><!--EZCODE QUOTE END--> you just have to type a noun in the blank. Nouns need no specific syntax or grammer in any language (okay, masculine/femine, but they're trivial to check for, and largely irrevolent for our purposes)) In that type of situation, you would never need to type in "Give the large fluffy bunny slippers to the big burley man," or "Ask the tiny angry dwarf about the best way to double my stock equity options through various internet services." You'd just click talk on the tiny angry dwarf, and type "Stock Options" in the blank... and to allieviate agression you could have a variety of different aceptable ways of describing the same thing. (i.e. "Stock Options," "Stock," "Stock Equity," "Internet," etc.) Which could even be incorperated into my next point, about spell checking.<br><br><!--EZCODE QUOTE START--><blockquote><b><i>Quote:</i></b><hr> I could type "ask about the weathre" till the cows come home, but it should never get a response about the "weather".<hr></blockquote><!--EZCODE QUOTE END--> I also have to disagree with this point. A good text interface should have some rudimentary spell-checking ability. I'll grant you that it is a bit more difficult, programming-wise, to do that. You could do it the easy way (have a list of variations of words and have them all link to the same dialog... i.e. weather, weathre, whethre, would all point to the dialog for weather) or the hard way (create an algorythm to determine if a word is close enough to a correctly spelled word already in the list.) QFG2 had a form of rudimentary spell checking in it... you would get the same response if you spelled it Shapier or Shapeir. <p></p><i></i>

Author:  Xorcist [ Wed Mar 20, 2002 9:03 am ]
Post subject:  Re: It's not as difficult as you think.

I was actually under the impression people wanted a full parser. Now that I see where you're going I understand a bit more. However, my question still stands, why mix the two? Why have Shapier on the list when I could just type it in. And would those default choices be treed to other defaults?<br><br>Now it might make sense, in reguards to your setup, to populate valid topics as you ask them (without defaults). Say I ask about Shapier, after the dialog it would then get added as a selectable topic. And the actual dialog tree would only represent what you've talked about, while not giving away any extra information away. And of course flags should be set so that deeply nested topics can't be "jumped to" out of order (but any parser would need that).<br><br>As far as spell checking, everything else aside... I wouldn't want my kids to play this game if they could ask about the "whether" and get a response about the "weather". That just teaches them that bad spelling is okay (or that a certain word means something other than what it actually does). Which is where we differ on whether (wink wink) a text parser is "good" or not. Type it correctly or don't type it at all I say.<br><br>P.S. Does anyone have any screenies of that Larry 7 Communication System... I've never played it before and would like to have a look at it. <p></p><i>Edited by: <A HREF=>Xorcist</A> at: 3/20/02 3:05:19 am<br></i>

Author:  Charles269 [ Thu Mar 21, 2002 1:38 am ]
Post subject:  Re: It's not as difficult as you think.

<!--EZCODE QUOTE START--><blockquote><b><i>Quote:</i></b><hr> I wouldn't want my kids to play this game if they could ask about the "whether" and get a response about the "weather". That just teaches them that bad spelling is okay (or that a certain word means something other than what it actually does).<hr></blockquote><!--EZCODE QUOTE END--><br>Fair enough. <p></p><i></i>

Author:  Dr Foreman [ Fri Mar 22, 2002 1:16 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: QFG2: Communication Poll

I like the text parser. It's not a pain, it's a puzzle. <br><br>QFG2 is like a fantasy-based detective game. The hero has to find the right people and ask them the right questions, or his ignorance will get him killed. To simply hand the hero the right questions on a point-and-click menu, and therefore hand him the answers, would make things too simple, I feel.<br><br>As for trying to win over new gamers, I think ultimately new people will be more impressed with a game that is immersive and demands more of them than a game that makes things too easy.<br><br>After all, how quickly can you blast through QFG1 VGA? I love that remake, but it's all click-click-click done. On a good day, I can finish it in one sitting! QFG2 is a much more complex game, with much more complex communication, and I think it would lose more by being directly translated to point-and-click.<br><br>I played Sierra games for a long time, and I've always thought the "typing" games were the most challenging. QGF3 and QFG5 seemed so much easier than #2. Only a few select point-and-click games, like Gabriel Knight and to a lesser extent Shadows of Darkness, really challenged me because the puzzles were unusual. <br><br>By the way, someone mentioned that the bargaining in QFG2 was too fixed - I'd also be in favor of a more "open" bargaining system like the ones used in the third and fifth games. <p></p><i></i>

Author:  Anonymous Game Creator 2 [ Fri Mar 22, 2002 1:56 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: QFG2: Communication Poll

We'll probably end up first making a text parser communication version of QFG2VGA, and then after that we'll reprogram a point and click version.<br><br>It seems that the point and click interface is quite popular, according to the poll, despite how much it takes away from the game, and there are valid reasons to both sides of the argument. <br><br>I need to decide on which way it will go soon and I still think a text parser makes the game more immersive and will be faster to script. So once that is finished, adding a point and click system in place of the text parser should be a lot easier, and people can just download the version they prefer. What would everyone's opinions be if we did it this way? <p></p><i></i>

Author:  Erpy [ Fri Mar 22, 2002 3:28 pm ]
Post subject:  Not bad...

If someone ever decided to translate QFG2VGA (which is hard because it's just crap-loaded with puns)<br>the point&click tree would allow them to do so. (translating a partially parser-based game would be next to impossible)<br><br><!--EZCODE IMAGE START--><img src=""><!--EZCODE IMAGE END--><br> <p></p><i></i>

Author:  Xorcist [ Fri Mar 22, 2002 4:22 pm ]
Post subject:  What do I think...

well I'm all for having both versions available (and I'd probably download both as well). However while I'd agree the parser is more immersive, I'd have to disagree it's faster to script. Case in point would be having to handle multiple inputs for a single output. You don't know what the "user" is going to type, and a parser needs a minimal amount of flexability to handle that (i.e. ask about wind elemental, ask about air elemental, ask about whirlwind monster, etc.). The point n' click interface doesn't require that, it just gives you the choices. Not only that but the point n' click is numercially based, did I pick choice #1, #2, #3, etc. Where the parser has to do a string comparisons (and thus requires more coding).<br><br>Personally I'd like to see the point n' click first (QFG2 after all is the only one of the series that never got a PNC interface). And actually if you use a dialog tree to start with, implementing a parser on top of it is nothing more than getting rid of the visual aspect and adding in those extra cases I just spoke about. But once again it's completely up to you. As long as a point n' click comm-system is available at some point, I'll be a happy man.<br><br>So that's my 2ยข. <p></p><i></i>

Author:  Dr Foreman [ Fri Mar 22, 2002 7:54 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: QFG2: Communication Poll

I was going to suggest possibly doing both parser and menu versions, but I thought that would be demanding too much! But if you're willing to do both, that would be great, and it would seem justified because people clearly have strong feelings about both systems. <p></p><i></i>

Author:  Wolfgang Abenteuer [ Fri Mar 22, 2002 9:26 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: QFG2: Communication Poll

An excellent idea, AGD2. Give something that everyone will be happy with. Now THAT'S diplomacy!!! <!--EZCODE EMOTICON START :) --><img src= ALT=":)"><!--EZCODE EMOTICON END--> See, that's why we all love Tierra!<br><br>~Wolfgang <p></p><i></i>

Author:  Anonymous Game Creator 2 [ Mon Mar 25, 2002 9:58 am ]
Post subject:  Re: QFG2: Communication Poll

Xorcist, yeah you're right that the text parser would take longer to to script. What I meant to say was that I'd rather get the text parser done first so that the hardest part is out of the way for good, and so we'll know all the words and topics that will exist in the game. That's how we usually prefer to work, getting all the difficult/tricky/boring stuff done as soon as possible, so that we can then make the fun parts of the game more quickly. <!--EZCODE EMOTICON START :) --><img src= ALT=":)"><!--EZCODE EMOTICON END--> <br><br>Once the text parser version of QFG2 is complete, the point and click version will be as simple as making a new GUI for the typing parser and then just selecting which topics from the parser should appear at certain points in the game. <p></p><i></i>

Author:  Xorcist [ Tue Mar 26, 2002 10:53 am ]
Post subject:  Re: QFG2: Communication Poll

Hey... you wouldn't happen to need an extra alpha/beta testered, would ya? I've got a lot of free time on my hands, and I used to work doing Q/A before I got into programming. So if you need an extra hand, drop me a line. <p></p><i></i>

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