Squiffy 4 - interactive fiction editor for Windows, OS X and Linux

11 July 2015

Squiffy 4 is now available. This release brings the editor to Windows, OS X and Linux, so you can now create and edit games offline.

Squiffy for OS X

Squiffy is a simple system for writing multiple-choice interactive fiction. It publishes to HTML so you can upload your game anywhere. The quickest way to see it in action is to check out the documentation, which has a load of live examples - you can see the code and the results in the same place, and play around by editing the examples in the ScratchPad.

With this release, you now have three options for using Squiffy:

The new desktop version of the Squiffy editor takes the web-based editor (created for Squiffy 3) and wraps it up using Electron. It’s exactly the same code, so all future improvements will be available in both the web and desktop versions.

What sort of future improvements? Well, we’re nearly at the end of my Squiffy Roadmap now, but this is just the beginning. Now we have a fairly simple editor across all platforms for what is still a fairly simple system, we can start to flesh out the features a bit. I’d like to add a graphical view showing how a game’s sections and passages connect to each other, and I’ve got various ideas for how the editor could assist you with building a game - making it a one-click operation to add new sections and passages, showing you which sections and passages are empty or missing, etc.

Both the Squiffy Compiler and Squiffy Editor are open source on GitHub:

All feedback, suggestions and pull requests are welcome!

Inform hosting on textadventures.co.uk

7 June 2015

You can now upload games created with Inform directly to textadventures.co.uk.

Previously, you could upload an HTML game created using Inform’s “Release along with an interpreter” option, but now it’s even easier - you can now upload a .z5, .z8, .ulx, .zblorb or .gblorb file directly.

Just head to the “Submit a Game” link and submit your file. After uploading the file, enter a few basic details and hit Publish. That’s it! Your game’s listing page is created, where it can be played online (using Parchment) or downloaded.

When publishing a game, you can also choose to keep your game unlisted, which means only people you give the link to will have access.

If you upload a blorb file that includes cover art, that will be automatically added to your game listing.

Squiffy 3 - a new web-based editor for interactive fiction

25 April 2015

The third release of Squiffy is now available. The big new feature in this version is you no longer have to download anything!

Previously, the only way to use Squiffy was by creating a file in a text editor and compiling it from the command line. You can still do that, but you can now just use your web browser instead.

In-keeping with the philosophy of trying not to do too many new things in any one release, this first iteration of the editor is intentionally very simple. It’s pretty much a text editor in the cloud, with a few Squiffy-specific bells and whistles to make editing a game easier.

Squiffy Editor

You can use the editor without logging in, in which case all changes are automatically saved to your browser (and are automatically re-loaded the next time you come back). Or if you’re logged in, you can hit the Save button to sync your game to your account, so you can access it from anywhere.

You can publish your game directly to textadventures.co.uk, or you can export it as HTML and JavaScript to upload to any website (or even wrap with something like PhoneGap to turn it into a mobile app).

As you create sections and passages, the drop-down lists above the editor automatically update. These provide an easy way for you to find your way around your game.

When you run your game, it appears on the right-hand side of the screen, so you don’t need to switch between tabs or windows.

If you set attributes in your game, you can keep track of them by looking at the pane at the bottom of the screen, which logs all attribute changes.

Try it out now at http://textadventures.co.uk/squiffy/editor.

Open source, of course…

Both Squiffy and the editor are open source and on GitHub:

For Squiffy 4, I’m planning to wrap this HTML-based editor with Electron (formerly Atom Shell), to create an offline downloadable app that will work on Windows, Mac and Linux. After that, we can start fleshing out the editor with more features - a graphical overview of your game’s sections would be an important feature, I think. I’m open to more suggestions!

Enjoy! If you have any questions, post in the forum or ask at IF Answers.

Open-sourcing "Moquette"

15 October 2014

A year ago, I released my first work of interactive fiction “Moquette” into the IFComp.

Today, I’m releasing the source code for it: https://github.com/alexwarren/moquette

It might be useful if you’re interested in implementing similar text effects in your own Quest game - if so, this blog post may also help.

Or who knows, maybe you’d like to adapt it - fix up the writing, change the ending, whatever… you can now fork it and do what you like with it.

The commit history goes all the way back to when it was a very primitive London Underground simulator, so you can see how it evolved over time. You can see the bursts of activity on GitHub’s commit graphs, which give some indication of the ebbs and flows of my energy for writing.

I haven’t had so much energy for writing for the last year, though I’m kicking around ideas again. Who knows where they will end up. Perhaps we haven’t yet heard the last of Private Rod…

Squiffy 2.0

11 October 2014

Squiffy 2.0 is now available. Just like Apple’s “Snow Leopard” release of OS X a few years ago, this release of Squiffy boasts an amazing 0 new features.

0 new features

Why no new features? Because Squiffy releases should only do one thing at a time, and this release is all about rewriting the compiler to use Node.js instead of Python.

This does make installation simpler, as Squiffy is now an npm package. To install Squiffy, you just need to install Node.js and then run

npm install squiffy -g

That’s it!

Everything else is the same as before, with the possible exception of there being a different set of bugs now. If you spot any, please log them on GitHub.

You can find out how to use Squiffy by looking at the documentation, and the Squiffy 1.0 blog post’s overview is still up-to-date except for the reference to Python.

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