Adventures in Alan v3

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We usually think of programming languages and their standard libraries as forming one coherent whole, and for general-purpose languages this might as well be the case. But in text adventure authoring systems the two are more divorced. Often, the language proper has few or no features specific to interactive fiction, and it's the library that makes it into an authoring system, properly speaking. Such is the case with TADS 3, which has recently acquired a new standard library called adv3lite and Inform 6, which has several alternatives, none especially popular.

In "No Time To Play" Felix Ple┼čoianu writes about the pleasures of writing an adventure in Alan.

There are always problems with software! They crash and/or do the things you say, when that was not what you wanted. Even in IF software. We want to avoid those problems as much as possible.

In a compiled environment (having a compiler to analyse the source code and convert that to something that the interpreter can run), there are five levels of problems to cater for. The goal with the Alan Langauge and its compiler has been that there should be very little chance that the *player* should get into trouble, whatever the problem is:

Alan v3.0 beta3 is now available. Alan has been updated with what will probably be one of the last Beta versions before going 3.0 (planned for February 2014!). You can view the details of the changes in the Changes section. Windows downloads are available right now, with Linux and MacOSX coming in the next few days.

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What They Say

"I-F languages are like vehicles ... using Alan is like driving a zippy, easy-handling little electric town car -- it's often all you need to take you where you want to go."

Lelah Conrad