Place for absolute newbies to share projects?

I was thinking more along the lines of the first post so that basically any game/demo is good enough so that the techniques can be discussed.

About an IF parallel to E3 could be a good idea too - I just regard this as quite different from a newbie site which allows simple tech demos. Perhaps worth its own topic?

I wasn’t sure about this - that’s great :slight_smile:

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Someone on here at one point had proposed a monthly “workshop” type of thing kind of like a book club where a scenario would be given and each participant would present how they implemented it at the end of the month for discussion and comparison, then a new scenario would be given for the next month to work on.

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Can we restart the IF Theory Club in conjunction with this proposal too? We had one in the mid 2010s, then Emily Short stepped down and there has yet been someone to take over. I propose @manonamora to lead this.

Update: The CoG forums do have a monthly writer’s support thread, and I post regularly there. Maybe we can have something like this here as well?

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That’s a really good idea. It’s sort of like a monthly challenge, where both experts and novices can participate. The experts have a “puzzle” to solve. The novices have something to think about and they can learn from the experts when they present their solutions. I have quite a few ideas for useful objects or scenarios that could be used for challenges.

The only problem I see is that there are too many jams and competitions always running, so people may not have time to participate because of the perpetual authoring, playing and judging of those jams and competitions.

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People who may be interested in instructional jams likely aren’t entering every comp. If there are too many opportunities for people to submit games and have deadlines then discussion of this is moot.

The way I’m picturing it, people aren’t creating an entire game. Maybe something along the lines of an Inform 7 documentation example, like “create an implementation where they key to unlock a door is not an actual key.” Then it’s show-and-tell, not judged.

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Exactly. I agree wholeheartedly.

When referring to competitions, I only meant that time is precious and people may not have the time to take out of their competition schedule to think about or work on the monthly workshop.

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Perhaps we could use Inktober or Septembit prompts? Both of these are annual art challenges (the former is focused on inking, and the latter on pixel art) with one-word prompts for each day of the month. The main difference between the two is that each of Septembit’s prompts follow a central theme (e.g. fantasy adventure) while Inktober is more varied, with some abstract ideas thrown in the mix. I’ve seen Inktober, at least, used for a different challenge (Ideaboxtober on Godville) and I think they could translate well to an IF challenge.

Example prompts

Septembit 2021
Inktober 2023

In IF, it could be something along the lines of “create a single-room puzzle featuring this idea” or something. That way there’s some structure, but still freedom for creativity. Object-oriented prompts are probably better than feature-oriented ones, since it could be difficult for newbies (like me) to grasp how to implement them.

Thoughts?

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That’s kind of the mention, but I don’t think my shoulders could hold that heavy mantle… :joy:
Also I have 1 knowledge in Inform: it exists and I don’t know how to use it :joy:

We kinda do this with the NeoInteractive jams, tbh, except we don’t have the discussion part :sweat_smile:
But the whole theme/restrictions bit of every jam (aside from bringing back old jams) is to help peeps start with IF, or a system they didn’t use before, or a technique/bit of a code…

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Exactly. A workshop example shouldn’t be a whole game that takes an entire month of intense writing. Air-tight implementation should not be required. This tends to remove any sort of fear of experimentation. Like I could never make an entire game in Dialog with my current skills, but if someone said “Let’s just create two rooms with a locked door between and see if you can do just that…” it’s more of a bite-sized accomplishable goal.

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If this workshop idea goes ahead, perhaps we could alternate between something simple and something tricky from month to month. Also, it would be beneficial if it was authoring system agnostic, so “entries” could be in ADRIFT, Adventuron, Dialog, Inform 6, Inform 7, TADS, ZIL and anything else that people choose to use. In this way, not only do newbies learn how to do things, but they can see the relative strengths and weaknesses of each system. There may even be cases where choice-based systems could be used.

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