Question over parser games [Commercial Success]

It’s what VERB NOUN combo to use that is hard. I can’t tell you the amount of times I’ve seen people try things like WALK TO THRONE when the throne is visible, which yields “You can see no such thing” unless the author has turned off WALK. Or FIND DOOR. Or LEAVE ROOM. Things that immediately turn people off because they don’t have a good grasp right off the bat of the conventions. Or they’re trying to play some sophisticated game like Counterfeit Monkey as their first game and can’t figure it out and decide, “Screw that.”

Which means that people either need a human guide their first time, or we need to start taking tutorials more seriously. I’ve long been thinking about writing a short one-room tutorial to just plug into the beginning of every game, but have never gotten around to it, because writing a tutorial is bloody hard. The only one I did, for a TALP game, was one of the worst writing experiences I ever had, and I don’t think I did it very well, but I have few ideas for how to improve it.