When playing Inform games, do you use the 'OOPS' function?

If you’ve ever played an Inform game, please respond to this poll. Thanks.


Why only Inform?

Because I didn’t know other games had it.


Never used it. Never seen the point to be honest. It’s usually just quicker to retype the command than Oops it.

Seconded. Or to press the UP key and edit.

I use “oops” once in a blue moon but I kind of resent it. I particularly resent that the perfectly good letter “o” has been hijacked by this command. And I feel like I wouldn’t be able to use it at all if I weren’t familiar with Inform parser internals (the “Sorry, that can’t be corrected” message certainly doesn’t give you any hint about what kind of mistakes can be).

I always forget that the up arrow scrolls through previous commands. If I press the up arrow during play, it’s probably because I want to look at the scrollback.

I use the up arrow. Never used oops, and wouldn’t mind it not being implemented in a game (or being kicked from Inform).

Oh yes, the “Sorry, that can’t be corrected” message. In the few times I did try out that function I came up against that message, and thought, well, what’s the use. Also, to save time I often write short commands. “Open door”. What with? “Key”, rather than “Unlock door with key”. If I type “Open door” “Jey” instead, I never know if Oops will take care of that.

Actually, if oops IS able to correct “key” in those circumstances, then I might start using it. I just never bothered to find out.

Peter: I would doubt it, as “jey” wouldn’t be a valid noun and it would be interpreted as a verb. I don’t quite understand how oops works, but I believe it can’t correct verbs.

Oh hey, it does!

I randomly opened 9:05, “out.e.”, “open door” [Which one, front door or bedroom door?] “dront” [I don’t know that word] “oops front” [You open the front door].

This changes things. I might start using this after all.

Wow. I did not know that. Useful!

But then what does “that can’t be corrected” mean, if it fully parses the new input?

It means that no word in the previous input was marked as “this is the mistaken word”. The “mistaken word” variable is set by a bunch of cases, and I haven’t dug through to figure out exactly how they fit together.

But the most obvious error case is where the previous input was successfully parsed. The error message tries to cover the case where the player types “TAKE DOOR”, and gets “That’s hardly portable”, and the player tries “OOPS SWORD”. The parser doesn’t cover that (although I suppose it could).

OOPS was probably useful when interpreters didn’t support using up-arrow to go through command history. It’s not very useful now.

Full disclosure: Until this thread, I didn’t know about the up-arrow thing. :blush:

I knew about pressing up (mainly thanks to operating system command lines) but I didn’t know about oops.

Is there some kind of resource or cheat sheet that lists all of these “secret” interpreter commands and behaviors, etc? It would be useful to keep around and show people who are just getting into IF, or haven’t played in a long while.

Yeah, kinda goes without saying. It was probably a very useful (not to mention neat) feature back in the day.

abjectadjective: not really secret, just under-documented because it’s very underused and rather obsolete as you can see by this thread. Same as VERIFY, which I think isn’t even part of I7 anymore.

Taking a look at JIGSAW’s command list summary is nostalgic and makes you wonder how much of that was default and how much was slowly stripped away and how much was just there for that game (I think they were standard for all I6 games of that time though)… VERIFY, INVENTORY WIDE/TALL, NOTIFY we still use (well, I don’t, but it’s still common knowledge), and then we have PRONOUNS, PLACES and OBJECTS…

On the note of OBJECTS, I have never, ever, EVER found the verb “find” useful in any of the games that claimed to support it (mostly Infocom). “FIND WHATEVER”: “You can’t see it.” No shit. “FIND ME”. “You are right here!” So I am, thank you very much, I will now erase you from my mind, you smart-alec verb.

Peter: Inform 7 still supports VERIFY (or is it $VERIFY? I only know there’s an action out of world for it), but I don’t think it’s ever used. I’ve used PRONOUNS, but only for debugging, and I agree that FIND is useless. There’s an extension for I7 that makes it useful, Remembering by Aaron Reed (IIRC), which on Glulx gives a response like “The last time you saw the NOUN, it was in the ROOM.”

It still supports VERIFY? My, this thread is turning into a little treasure chest of little-known features.

Actually, out of the verbs you mentioned I7 comes with VERIFY, NOTIFY and PRONOUNS out of the box, but not with the others.

This is the full list of standard I7 verbs (from the actions tab of a compiled bare-bones story), excluding swear words:

There’s an “oops” command?
checks the documentation to Inform 7 (Appendix A where all the commands are listed).
No, there isn’t.
Whew. For a minute there I thought I was going nuts.
tries it in Inform 7.
What is this sorcery?!