Roger Firth's IF pages

Home

InfAct -- about Inform NPCs

Email
Back up

Like its associate InfLight and InFancy, InfAct is an Inform overview site, this time covering Non-Player Characters (NPCs). As before, this is just a sampler of the tools and techniques available, more a kit of parts than a ready-to-run solution; the work of breathing life into your creation is a long hard slog, but very rewarding if you make a success of it.

The material is loosely organised as follows:

Basics
What makes an NPC? And what makes him come alive?
Silent interaction
There's always room for a little give and take.
Conversation
"Hello, Sailor" (or, more accurately, "Say good morning to the ancient mariner").
Conversation packages
Some assistance in keeping things moving in the right direction.
Orders
Sometimes, you've just got to tell 'em what to do.
Movement
Cut the ties that bind! Set them free!

Conventions

To clarify where the various example displays come from, a little colour-coding is used:

 
This is a sample of text in an Inform source file.

 
This is from a Z-machine interpreter at run-time. 

Acknowledgements

Various modules are mentioned along the way; my gratitude, as ever, to the authors concerned:


We'll begin by creating a minimal NPC object, then provoking a few reactions.