What is your process?

I’m sirt of confused on how to write my source code and was just wondering how you do it. By that I mean: do you start by writing the room descriptions, the players, the rules, etc. How do you start and how do you go from there?

1 Like

Whatever is most important. Usually you will find benefit from putting game-wide “concepts” at the beginning of the text. Although it doesn’t always apply, you want to define the building blocks of the game before you put them to use. Don’t be afraid of rearranging a bit after you get going. Sometimes it’s most comfortable to start with a test room and flesh out the character, or a few real rooms to move around in while you set everything up. The good part of Inform is you can dive in anywhere and in most cases the source text order won’t matter. However…

You will benefit greatly by using Headings in your source text right from the start and labeling them. See Documentation 2:5, and 2:6 explains why. You can remember the outline headings largest to smallest using the mnemonic “Very Bad People Choose Satan” (Volume, Book, Part, Chapter, Section"—You don’t have to use all of them, but doing so will make your life easier. Read 2:6.)

Here’s my WIP outline with some redactions. This is all outlined for the most part in full, even for sections I have no written content yet, which is helpful.


I highly recommend a permanent “not for release” volume where your major test commands and shortcuts live. Any heading labelled “Something - Not for release” won’t be included in a “Release” version, but will be included in a “Release for Testing” verison.

Thanks for the insight!

I look this up every time. You have probably just saved me from looking it up every time. But I can’t decide whether or not I should be grateful, all things considered.

That is pretty cool. My method to date of having the order handy has just been to paste the hierarchy in one line as a comment at the top of my source.


I tend to write an outline of the game in the form of a story outline as if I’m writing a novel. Then I build rooms for a section of the game, then fill them with things. I address mechanisms like how to implement matches and fire as I come to them in the outline.

I actually got the mnemonic idea from Ryan Veeder, although his sentence may be different.

Oh, it was probably something really down to earth, like ‘Veeder’s Brain Posits Choicest Sentence’.


1 Like