Quip-Based Conversation

version 5 by Michael Martin

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  • Section: Making people talk

    People have a "greeting" which is a quip that is delivered when you TALK TO them. This defaults to the internal value "quip_null" which will result in no greeting and all, moving straight to options.

    People also have a "litany" which is a table that holds their actual conversational options. This defaults to the Table of No Conversation, in which no options are presented at all. Other litanies have three columns: "prompt" - a string indicating the player's prospective line of dialogue; "response" - a quip that is the NPC's reply; and "enabled", a number that should be 1 if the line is available the first time the character is spoken to, and 0 otherwise.

        George is a man in the Cherry Orchard. The greeting of George is greeting. The litany of George is the Table of George Conversation.

        Table of George Conversation
      prompt  response  enabled  
      "How's the weather look?"  discuss weather  1  
      "How're your teeth doing?"  standoff  1  
      "Say nothing"  silence  1  

    Rules may be attached to quips as usual; see the Reactable Quips documentation for how this works in detail. Briefly, we use rulebooks associated with the quipping activity, and refer to the variable "the current quip" to determine which ones are in use.

    A wide variety of phrases are available for use in these rules; most relevant are "enable the X quip" and "disable the X quip", where X is the name of the response quip you wish to make available in the current litany. If you wish to enable or disable quips in other litanies, you may "enable/disable the X quip for Y" where Y is the name of the person in whose litany you wish to modify the option. To modify or eliminate the default conversation characteristics of a character, the greeting or litany may be changed normally with commands like "change the litany of X to Y" -- however, changing the litany of a character will not modify the current conversation. To modify that, you instead "shift the conversation to X". To run a conversation without an attached person, you may "run a conversation on X". This will not deliver a greeting quip. Finally, when talking is done, one may "terminate the conversation". This is an appropriate reaction to good-bye or say-nothing quips, depending on how they are handled.

    Quips disable themselves by default when used. For permanent quips (such as "say nothing", above), we must re-enable them by hand:

        After quipping when the current quip is silence: enable the silence quip.

    If "silence" is shared across NPCs, this one rule will work for all of them. For custom farewell quips, individual rules will be used.