Strangely Consistent

Theory, practice, and languages, braided together

July 12 2012 — platform things

After sending off yesterday's post, I realized that I didn't have a sad-path test for putting containers inside themselves.

Then I got to thinking how last year's game handles this. I gave it a whirl:

> put helmet in helmet
You put the helmet in the helmet.

OMG it worked!

But the funny thing isn't that this impossible act of self-containment is even possible, but that later when I look at the room, the helmet is gone. So, where is it? In itself, apparently. It's like the helmet now forms its own little isolated universe, containing only one item: a helmet.

Or, more succinctly, I suck at programming. :-)

jnthn suggested I fix it in this year's game by throwing the exception X::Adventure::YoDawg. I oblige.

It's still possible to screw things up with some patience and two portable containers, I guess. What we really need to guard against are arbitrary cycles of containership. (Oh you silly adventure gamers!) I can't just forbid higher-level containers, because it's entirely in order to put a helmet full of water in the car, for example. Anyway, we'll solve the general case when we need to. It'll be fun.

This wasn't at all what I was supposed to be doing today. I was supposed to create platforms. Now, if containers are things you put other things in, then platforms are things you put other things on. That was the design I ended up with last year, and I think it'll hold up even this year.

From the point of view of the game, even platformhood is a kind of containment relation, actually. A butterfly on a pedestal works much like a butterfly in a car. So I can mostly just copy the tests that apply from yesterday, and make them work:

That's nice. But we also need to protect about the 'yo dawg' situation with platforms. Otherwise we might get turtles all the way down. We re-use the X::Adventure::YoDawg exception for this.

And we're done for today. Tomorrow we're gonna learn how to read.