Writing:Your First Age
In the game, go to the Seltani District and head to the Book Gallery. (Along the shoreline, turn right at the fork.) Step into the niche marked by a cluster of balloons.
The linking book before you is the Age called Ascheta. It contains the tools you’ll need to create worlds. Link to Ascheta, and then open the book titled “My Worlds.”
This should open a new window (or browser tab) showing the build permission screen. Sign the form saying that you’ll be nice and not destroy the server. You will then see a link to the main build page, with a table titled
- Alternatively, you could skip the walk and link directly to the “Your worlds” screen at this URL: http://dev.seltani.net/build. But don’t you feel more engaged if you begin by strolling through the City, travelling to your private study, settling down at the big desk, and getting to work? Sure you do.
Create the world
At any rate, it’s time to create your first Age. Press the
Create New World button in the lower right. It will give you a confirmation prompt; press
Create to continue.
The screen now shows a world named
New World. Take a moment to check out the screen layout. The menu bar (beneath the Seltani banner) has links for
Worlds (your list of worlds),
New World (which you just created), and a menu of location (currently empty). Beneath that are tables showing various properties of the world, which are mostly still blank.
The first thing we’ll do is change the world name.
New World is banal. Click on that text – the entry in the
World table, next to the heading
name. Turns out this is an editable text entry! Change it to
Dusty Hill. When you begin typing, the entry row turns yellow and
Revert/Save buttons appear. Press
Save when the world name suits you.
- Always be sure to
Saveentries when you are finished working on them! If you leave the page, any remaining yellow rows will be reverted to their original contents.
instancing entries for now.)
Create a location
At the bottom of the page is an empty “Locations” table. Press the
New Location button. Presto, you are on a page titled
Still banal. Again, you have the ability to change the location’s name. Click on
New Location in the table, change it to
Foot of Hill, and hit
While you’re at it, click on the string
loc_0 (next to the
key header), change it to
foot, and save that. This is a short lower-case string which we will use to identity the location later on.
The second table on the page has one row:
desc — Text — You are here. This is the description text for the location. Leave the first two columns alone, and edit the
You are here part. Change it to say... let me see now...
You are standing at the foot of a hill in the middle of a dusty steppe. Stands of wicker-dry grass dot the landscape, rattling thinly in the breeze.
That’s it! We now have an Age with one nicely-described location. If you jump back to the world screen (click
Dusty Hill in the menu bar), you’ll see
foot — Foot of Hill listed in the
Visit the location
A world is no fun if you can’t stand there and look around. How to do this?
Go back to the location screen if you’re not already there. (Select
Foot of Hill in the
Locations table, or from the pull-down menu in the menu bar.)
In the right middle of the page is a button
Create Portal to Here. Press it and confirm. This adds a page to your character’s linking booklet, linking to the new location.
You can explore the game in one browser window while you build in another window. In fact, this is the best way to build. Try this now: open a second window, visit http://dev.seltani.net/, and enter the Cavern. You should see a new entry in your booklet pane:
Dusty Hill — Foot of Hill. (If not, did you confirm the
Create Portal command?)
Select this link. (The linking page will be hazy. We’ll fix that later. It’s functional, just not artistically embellished yet.) Now touch the page.
You are standing at the foot of a hill...
Try editing the descriptive text (in the build window) while you’re standing there (in the game window). You can see the room description updates every time you hit
Save on the
Add a close-up view
In the build window, add square brackets around the word “grass”:
You are standing at the foot of a hill in the middle of a dusty steppe. Stands of wicker-dry [grass] dot the landscape, rattling thinly in the breeze.
The “grass” now appears as a hyperlink in the game window, but it doesn’t work yet. (If you click it, you’ll see a “Symbol not found” error.) To make this work, press the
New Property button in the build window. This adds a new line to the
Location properties table.
key_0 entry to the word
grass. Leave the
Text selector as-is. In the third column, enter this text:
The grass is waist-high reedy stuff, dry and yellow, with feathery greenish tips. It’s scattered in sparse stands across the land around you.
Once that’s saved, the “grass” link in the game will pop up a close-up view window.
Sharing your work
Currently, you can do this by adding your link to the public bookshelf in the Book Gallery.
This is obviously not ideal – for one thing, anybody can delete links from the public bookshelf. You can also create linking books and shelves in your private ages, which only you will be able to edit, but we’ll do that later.