Enterable without using enter?

I want to make a container enterable, but I don’t want the player to be able to type “enter [container]”. I want them to have to type “climb [container]” or “board [container]”. What do?

That sounds like a bad idea. ENTER is such a standard verb that if it’s not allowed many players would just assume that the thing can’t be entered or that there’s a bug in the game. What would you gain from disallowing that command?

Ideally I wanted to prevent people from just going “enter [object]” because the object is a solid mass that cannot be “entered”, it can only be climbed upon. I wanted to make it a very insignificant world puzzle, essentially. I’ve tried using one of the Al Golden extensions but that caused too many problems.

Are you sure you don’t want a supporter rather than a container? It sounds like the player will wind up on top of the solid thing rather than in it. Even there, Juhana has a point; lots of people get onto chairs and the like by typing “enter chair,” so disallowing enter might confuse them. I do sometimes try climbing things like trees when “enter” doesn’t work, but if the puzzle is supposed to be insignificant there’s not much point in confusing the player here.

Another point: “get on cheese” maps to “enter cheese,” I think. If you just disallow entering, you’ll block “get on cheese,” and that will really confuse your players. (Also, unless you’ve set things up very well, I don’t think anyone is going to try “board cheese”; that seems very guess-the-verby.)

If you really want to disallow “enter,” maybe you could try something like this:

Instead of entering the cheese when the player's command includes "enter": say "The cheese is solid. You might be able to climb it, but you can't enter it." Instead of climbing the cheese: try entering the cheese. Understand the command "board" as "climb."

Totally untested, and I’m not sure the syntax works; also I can’t remember whether “climb” is a built-in verb/action.

If the thing is clearly something that can’t be entered, why would players then even try to enter it? :wink:

I would still allow ENTER but with a clarification of what the command was translated to:

Before entering the cheese when the player's command includes "enter": say "(by climbing the cheese)[command clarification break]".

I’m with Matt that – if this is the cheese thing from the other thread – you want an enterable supporter rather than a container. The upshot is that with a supporter you don’t have to worry about text like “You can see a cheese (empty) here.”

My normal policy is to refrain from giving design advice and just answer the technical part of the question, but in this case I have to agree with the other guys; player want more synonyms, not fewer. A few years back a game had a torch with a bracket that was implemented as a supporter rather than a container, so you had to “put torch on bracket.” “Put torch in bracket” resulted in the standard “That can’t contain things” message – a fact that more than a few reviewers pointed out with almost gleeful disdain.

As far as your actual question, the easiest way is probably:

Understand "enter [cheese]" as a mistake ("You can't enter the cheese, but it looks like you can 'climb' or 'board' it.").

Once again, please don’t do this. If your players are like me, an example of a likely transcript would be:


Hmmm, I guess you are all correct that it would be a poor design decision. Guess I’ll give it a miss this time around, but thanks for the detailed answers anyway!