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StoryHarp & IF
StoryHarp & Java
Defining where a command is available (context)

The context field of a rule is the most important variable that must be true for the command defined by that rule to be available. Simplifying things a bit, a context is like a room where a rule lives. If the player is not in the room, the rules command is not available. If the player is in the room, the rules command is available unless the rule has other unmet requirements. So, to define where a command is available, you need to edit the context field of the rule that defines it.

Editing the context field

The context field in the
rule editor panel is a single edit box. You can type over the text in this field or paste text into it. You can also drag text from the map or browser and drop it into the context field. To commit your change, press Tab.

Tips on editing contexts

Contexts don't have to be rooms; they can be states of mind, topics in a conversation, or parts of a task. Also, multiple contexts can be true at once. This means that commands in several contexts could be available at once, subject to the requirements being met for each rule.

gif/storyharp00090000.gif Since a context is really a requirement (just the most important one), you could use requirements and changes to accomplish what contexts and moves do, but it would be more difficult to understand and organize. For example, to move around a house, instead of moving from the context
front room to the context back room, you could stay inside the context house and change a variable called front room from true to false, and back room from false to true. The rules for the house could then have requirements of front room or back room. But this would be more difficult, partly because you couldnt map out the ideas as easily as if you were using different contexts.

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Updated: March 10, 1999. Questions/comments on site to
Copyright © 1998, 1999 Paul D. Fernhout & Cynthia F. Kurtz.