I teach middle school students. My supervisor wants me to teach students how to play and create text adventures for students. I have 20 minutes per day, for as long as is needed.
I’d prefer it be in a traditional format (e.g. where players type in commands such as “go north”), if such is available. It is okay if some simple programming is needed, but I don’t want students to program the engine from scratch, as the focus should be 99% on the writing of the world.
Our school has iPads and keyboards for each student, so it is convenient for them to enter in typed commands.
But I cannot find any authoring tools that run on iOS. Does anyone know of an authoring tool that works for iOS?
Playfic.com runs Inform 7 in a browser. You’d need to be online but that’s a possibility.
Also check out Quest at textadventures.co.uk which is also browser based.
Unfortunately there are lots of complicated laws when having children use the Internet, such as privacy policies and communication polices, and the two Web sites you mention don’t seem to comply. If the students created accounts there, and an adult contacted the students, etc., the teacher could be held liable for whatever communication occurred.
Does anyone know of a software-based version? Or even just a way to compile and test the games on an iPad (even from a Web site that does not require an account), from source typed into a text editor?
I didn’t think Playfic had any sort of communication or messaging features? The accounts are so that you can save your work and access it again later.
Sounds like an issue of a teacher cannot allow underage students online in any respect due to privacy and protection issues. Sad, but it makes sense to protect the school from lawsuits and the children from the Wild West that is the internet without specific approval from a parent or guardian.
Another possibility might be to contact the creators of Playfic and see if they can add whatever legalese or restrictions are necessary to make the site child-friendly - although I don’t know the details of the requirements, so I don’t know how hard that would be.
Alternatively, Quest is open-source, so you might be able to set it up to run on your own webserver inside the school network.
If you are looking at Quest, then the author also has set up ActiveLit which is “Interactive fiction for schools and groups”
I haven’t used it but looks like it might fit your requirements.
Not sure if Wunderverse suits your needs, but you might take a look at it …
You should give http://twinery.org a try. It has an online option. Files are local. I just did a quick test with my iPad. It seems to work. It should work well with a keyboard. A textbook is also available on Amazon.
The OP has already specified that anything online isn’t an option in the school environment.
The snarky side of me says this is just one reason why schools relying on iPads is dumb.
// Does anyone know of a software-based version? Or even just a way to compile and test the games on an iPad (even from a Web site that does not require an account), from source typed into a text editor?
The OP didn’t rule out a web based solution entirely, just one that required an account and possible adult interaction.
I am a retired science teacher. We used web based learning and web quests extensively. The teacher had to monitor things closely. The students are unlikely to have any supervision outside of school.
PS. The school system where I taught issues iPads to every middle and high school student. It eliminates the cost of text books. The iPads are also used extensively in learning. Each school including the elementary schools have school wide wifi with internet access. Problem web sites are blocked by the district system. I thought they should have purchased Kindle Fire HDs rather than iPads due to cost and built in youth restrictions if enabled. My wife still teaches there, the teachers have little risk from internet usage. Besides, the www is almost considered a necessity these days. Children should learn how to use it wisely.