[I6] Property describe and supporters

In I6, the property “describe” allows you to customise how an objet appears in a room description. (i.e. you can replace the “You can see X here” by something else.)

I just noticed that if you have an object on a supporter (a turkey on a table), the turkey’s ‘describe’ will not be called, and you’ll have the plain old “on the table is a turkey” message. Is that a desired feature? What’s the lib’s (or the DM4) stance on that? Is it just a weird overlooked corner case, something that’s considered too much of a hassle to program, or is there a good reason for that?

The closest I can find is at the end of Chapter 26 (“describing objects and rooms”) of the DM4, which (right after saying ‘if the describe property returns true, stop here’) says something like

which kind of implies that the ‘official’ method to avoid mentioning the turkey is to make it concealed. Why not do something like “when listing objects, wait until one of the objects’ ‘describe’ property returned false before writing anything”?

Could you solve the problem by changing the table’s “describe”?

It’s been a while since I dealt with that situation in I6, but it might be a case where you want “initial” rather than “describe”.

For the turkey or the table? I tried adding “initial [; rtrue; ],” to both; in the case of the turkey that doesn’t help (“You can see a table (on which there is a turkey) here.”), as for the table there is no “you can see a table here”, but the contents are still listed afterwards.

By the way, the problem can be solved with the table’s describe:

It’s kind of a hack, though (what if you want to mention the fork but not the turkey?); I wish the function that lists what’s on a supporter checked if at least one of the objects’s “describe” returned false. (Unless it’s a bad idea?)

I believe initial is skipped if describe returns true.

I usually don’t try to set either for contained or supported objects. Again, it’s been a while, but my memory says that that just doesn’t work out well. If I really want a custom paragraph for the turkey, I’ll put it on the floor and just pretend that it’s on the table! (Sounds silly, but it works well enough. Might have to customize the table and turkey descriptions for the case when the turkey is unhandled.)