§4.2. Scripted Scenes

Sometimes we want to arrange a scene in which something goes on in the background (as though it were a movie playing) while the player goes about his business; or where a series of things has to happen before the player gets to the end.

The simplest way to arrange background events for a scene is to write the sequence of events into a table and work our way through it, printing one line per turn, until the scene runs out. Day One does exactly this.

At other times, we want a scene to last as long as it takes the player to do something. Entrapment lets the player poke around and explore as much as he likes, but ends as soon as he has accomplished the scene's goal - which, unfortunately for him, is to get into an embarrassing situation so that another character can walk in and make fun of him. The Prague Job has a scene that requires the player to do a more specific set of tasks, but nags him and hurries him along until he's done.

Bowler Hats and Baby Geese assumes that our game is going to be assembled with a number of scenes, some of which will need to prevent the player from leaving the location until the scene is complete: it thus defines a "restricted" property for scenes, so that all such elements of the plot will work in the same way.

For more complex sorts of scripts and schedules, it may be worth consulting the extensions.

* See Characters Following a Script for a character whose conversation with the player is scripted to follow a pattern and then conclude


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*ExampleThe Prague Job
Scenes used to provide pacing while the player goes through his possessions.

**ExampleEntrapment
A scene in which the player is allowed to explore as much as he likes, but another character strolls in as soon as he has gotten himself into an awkward or embarrassing situation.

***ExampleBowler Hats and Baby Geese
Creating a category of scenes that restrict the player's behavior.

***ExampleDay One
A scene which plays through a series of events in order, then ends when the list of events is exhausted.