6E59: “end the game” vs. “end the story”

The new build discourages the use of several old phrases; of these, perhaps the most common is the set “end the game in victory”, “end the game in death”, and “end the game saying…”. Almost every project will have contained at least one of these phrases.

Instead, Inform now prefers

end the story
end the story finally
end the story saying (text)
end the story finally saying (text)

There are two reasons behind this change.

One is to move away from the terminology of “game”: not everything produced by Inform these days is a game.

The other is to deal with an inconsistency in the old system. The previous phrasing structure meant “end the game saying ‘…’” could only be used to describe what Inform thought of as “losing” endings. This corresponds to a structure from Inform 6, where there could be only one victory message, but any number of exotic death messages.

The distinction between winning and losing has been replaced by a distinction between “final” and “non-final” endings. This makes a difference only to what is printed by the “Table of Final Question Options”: it is possible to specify some options to be printed only if we have reached a final ending — for instance if there is spoilery information we would like to show the player only after we know he has seen everything the story has to offer.

For more about the options at the end of the story, see the Recipe Book on Out of World Actions and Effects > Ending the story.