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PostPosted: Mon Oct 01, 2018 6:11 pm 
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Has anyone managed to get Six Silver Bullets (or indeed any Adrift 5 game) running on Mac with the Mono framework and the Linux Runner? It seems to crash Mono when I try. (Full crash report here.)

Otherwise I guess I'll have to try to get my old Windows machine running again.


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PostPosted: Tue Oct 02, 2018 1:04 am 
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I don't know, but on my PC windows defender said it detected a virus and wouldn't let me play it.

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PostPosted: Tue Oct 02, 2018 3:13 am 
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@craiglocke: False virus detections are very common with ADRIFT .exe files because they contain compressed data and decompression software. Did you try the BLORB version with the ADRIFT runner from http://www.adrift.co/download?
The latest runner was released in June, so most antivirus programs have figured out it is safe by now.


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PostPosted: Tue Oct 02, 2018 5:17 am 
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I'm on PC and use Gargoyle (universal interpreter that can run Adrift games)
The .blorb wouldn't run. Renamed it with .taf, still wouldn't run. Ran the .exe and it ran, crashed, then automatically ran again.
Not trying again. Sorry.
EDIT: Just to see, I tried running it on my Android tablet in Fabularium, which is based on Gargoyle, and it worked fine there. The .glorb file, that is. No problems. Weird.


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PostPosted: Tue Oct 02, 2018 5:49 am 
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Gargoyle only runs very OLD ADRIFT games, it does not run ADRIFT 5 games!

Here are step-by-step installation instructions for ADRIFT 5 on a windows PC:
1. Go to http://www.adrift.co/download
2. Download ADRIFT5Setup.zip
3. Unzip, which should produce a single file called Setup.exe
4. Run Setup.exe to install ADRIFT 5.0
5. The interpreter is called Run500.exe, run it and open the BLORB file from its file menu.
6. If it doesn't work your computer may be missing v4 of the NET framework (see http://wiki.adrift.co/General_Setup for more info)

The Linux Mono version is called adrift-5.0.35.tar.gz and is on the same download page.

Fabularium 1.4.0 and later should work on android.


Last edited by saabie on Tue Oct 02, 2018 8:17 am, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Tue Oct 02, 2018 7:36 am 
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I also tried installing the Adrift runner (and Mono) on Ubuntu 18.04.1, but I have not been able to find a version of the required Visual Basic 2005 runtime libraries that works (the one I found requires libmono-winforms2.0, which is not available on Ubuntu 18.04.1).

Trying to run adrift gives the attached error.


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PostPosted: Tue Oct 02, 2018 8:07 am 
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Thanks I’ll try again!

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PostPosted: Tue Oct 02, 2018 10:54 am 
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Hello everyone,
This is Theodidactus, the author of six silver bullets

It was a very, very, very difficult decision to submit as a .blorb or as a .blorb/.exe combo. I initially did the former, on the belief that it would be easier for people to run. Ultimately, I received so many responses that the .exe file flagged as malware that I decided to alter the submission to simply be a .blorb.

I will keep watching this thread to see how do-able it is to even run this game on a mac. Thank you for trying.


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PostPosted: Sun Oct 28, 2018 1:31 pm 
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The ADRIFT website claims that there's an ADRIFT runner for web, which would make this game easy to play on any platform. Is that something you can do? Try that?

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 Post subject: Six Silver Bullets
PostPosted: Sun Oct 28, 2018 2:23 pm 
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The game's blurb describes it as having "numerous controversial mechanics: Randomized combat, arbitrary death, players are encouraged not to savescum or undo actions."

But the game's randomization is much deeper than that. The game includes a completely randomized plot. It's a spy game where the mission objectives and the agents themselves (who to trust/kill) are randomized. I would describe the whole thing as a roguelike (a "procedural death labyrinth"). As a result, a walkthrough is impossible. The game includes a 700-word walkthrough, but it's more correct to call it a list of suggestions. After having read the walkthrough, you'll still have no clear idea of what to do to win this game.

So, what makes a good PDL? Here are a few characteristics of a good PDL in my mind:

  • Strategic depth. Good PDLs are described as "harsh but fair," meaning that you can learn more about the game each time you play and that your odds of success will improve with superior strategy. Better strategy should substantially mitigate the risk of randomness, if not eliminate the risk entirely. There should be multiple high-level strategic approaches to the game, and each strategic approach should have a lot of special-case situations.
  • Meaningful variety. Randomness alone doesn't address the problem of variety. Pure randomness is just 10,000 bowls of plain oatmeal, with each oat being in a different position and each bowl essentially unique. https://emshort.blog/2016/09/21/bowls-o ... eneration/ The variety has to matter.
  • Freedom. Good PDLs have a zillion things you can do and try. Often, this freedom enables emergent gameplay, and supports strategic depth.

I don't think I played the game long enough to decide whether the game truly has strategic depth, but the walkthrough seems to take pride in describing the game as "unfair." The question of whether to TRUST an agent can't be determined in advance; the walkthrough offers no strategic suggestions for mitigating that.

Being "harsh but fair" is what makes "strategic depth" a puzzle worth solving.

As for meaningful variety, the game kicks off with amnesia, which prevents the player from having any connection to the randomized plot. As a PDL, this game is asking me to devote hours and hours of my life into figuring out how to develop an extremely detailed battle plan, robust against any randomized plot. But why? Why is this game worth that much effort?

And then there's freedom. Freedom is an area where parser IF games can really shine, but developing the game in ADRIFT really limits what the parser can do. (Not to mention the fact that it renders the game unplayable on non-Windows platforms.)

Seven playtesters are credited, but did they all win this "unfair" game? Did they all have fun?

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