There is already an automap extension for anyone to add A quick map to their game. It just isn’t used much or, really, at all.
Yeah I forgot to mention that, since games with extra windows don’t run online to my knowledge, and mentally that’s the area in which I’d filed the text automap, while simultaneously filing it under ‘not as pretty as a graphical map’. But I forgot that it doesn’t actually use an extra window - it just prints in a huge status line. So yes, with no extra work (other than getting your game onto ios in the first place!) you can add a text automap to your game even as we speak!
One aspect of the new Lost Treasures release was a button linking to the PDF documents / maps etc at the top of the screen. This seems a really great idea to me to include in an interpreter as it would mean that authors could include maps etc without detailed programming knowledge; they could also make them more authentic / atmospheric to the vision of the game (remember the old infocom faux brochures etc which were such fun to read)…
What you can do, if you want, is use FileApp. It’s an explorer program - I’ve put my entire collection in it. It’s easy to navigate, and I can open HTML, PDF, TXT and image files in it, no prob. And hey, instant feelies.
Asking an interpreter author to do it is trickier. Suddenly the author has to make the program recognise more formats, not to mention make sure they all display properly. iFrotz is not without issues and room for improvement of its own, and I’d rather encourage the author to focus on those.
Good tip - I still think that it would be great to have a PDF facility as part of an iOS or android interpreter because it would mean that there would be no need to switch apps etc and break the immersion. I feel that the big potential growth for if is for players on tablets and mobile devices - once you’re in an app on one of these, you want to do everything from within the app (as opposed to a computer where it’s a breeze to have lots of tabs open etc). And most mobile players aren’t going to want to do pen/paper mapping because they’re on the bus/tube etc… It would be wonderful if activision were willing to share what they’ve done for their release with the community - I also really liked the way that they integrated the old invisiclues - this would be a great facility for authors to have - good in-game hint systems look pretty onerous to code…
Well, what I can say is, if you have very specific suggestions for iFrotz - and it seems that you do - you can put them to Craig Smith himself. There is a forum and a bug tracker, and I have yet to see a suggestion/comment go unanswered.
Zarf is also working on his own iOS projects, which include improvements upon the regular Inform versions (which could be coded in Glulx and which I am, therefore, sad to see restricted to the iOS platform, but I difress). Although I’m sure he doesn’t envision the release of an interpreter, he’s certainly more approachable than Activision.
My iOS interpreter is up on GitHub. The extra display tab (Dreamhold map) is not part of the public source code, but an iOS developer could easily replicate that sort of functionality. Adding a tab with a static document (PDF or HTML) would be even easier.
I’ve been putting my foot in my mouth quite a lot these last few days. Go figure.
FWIW, the combination of Frotz and Graphio works great on the iPhone. There’s a free version of Graphio so it’s a no-brainer to give it a try.
I’m having some difficulty locating Graphio, could you help out?
Grafio, I think?
Duh. It’s “Grafio” not “Graphio.” Here’s a URL: tentouchapps.com/grafio.
No wonder I’m so lousy at text games…