Quest 5.1 Beta

Quest 5.1 Beta is now available. This is the beta test version of the next release of Quest, which features the following improvements:

  • Enhanced Game Browser. You can now see star ratings, and read reviews and comments, directly within Quest. You also have more control – from the Options window, you can change the download folder, and enable or disable the Sandpit and Adult categories. Also, the Adult category option can be “locked out” with a registry setting – handy if you’re rolling out Quest on a school network for example.
  • Simple Mode. Hides Quest’s more advanced functionality in the Editor – great for beginners, or for using Quest with younger children. The Editor becomes stripped right down to the basics – only rooms and objects are displayed in the tree, without the distracting “clutter” of functions, walkthroughs and so on. The Script Editor is cut down so only the most important script commands are displayed when adding a command. But full power is only ever a click away – you can toggle Simple Mode on or off at any time from the Tools menu.
  • Walkthrough Enhancements. You can now include walkthroughs in published .quest files, and the new walkthrough assertions feature allows you to create automated tests. Enter “assert:” followed by an expression at any point in a walkthrough, and that expression will be evaluated. The walkthrough will terminate if the expression evaluates to false.
  • Loops. There is a new “while” loop, and a new step parameter for “for”.
  • Use/Give. These have been moved to their own tab in the object editor, which is now more flexible. There are now separate lists for “Use (other object) on this” and “Use this on (other object)”, so you can set up a “use A on B” relationship from either A or B.
  • Hyperlinks. You can now customise the look of hyperlink menus – change the menu fonts and colours, and turn link underlining on or off. It’s now easier to create custom hyperlinks – the new ObjectLink function makes it easier to create an object hyperlink, and the new CommandLink function lets you create a hyperlink that will run any command.
  • Metadata. From the game editor, you can now enter a description and choose a category. There is a new game ID which will be used to uniquely identify a game. This will make it possible to upload a game to without having to re-enter descriptions etc. on the web upload form.
  • Better error reporting. Error messages are now more detailed, so if your game won’t load you should have a better idea why. If Quest crashes, you can now submit an error report online.
  • You can now turn off sounds from the Options window.

Download Quest 5.1 Beta

6 thoughts on “Quest 5.1 Beta

  1. Peter Pears

    Good job on the beta. Three issues, though.

    1) Some games appear with a ridiculous amount of stars, takes up almost the space of the windows.

    2) It’s good to be able to change where the games are downloaded to, but unless I want to keep a chaotic single folder full of .quest and .cas and the savegames for all of them, the “Download/Play” button is pretty useless – it would be useful if indeed it could remember which games I already downloaded, but as it is, it will only remember if I leave them all lying around there,

    3) Good job on implementing a choice of fonts and background colours, but it’s unclear whether my custom colours/fonts will be used on EVERY game or just on games where the colours and fonts are the DEFAULT set (meaning, if a game has a special font and colour scheme, I wouldn’t want to miss it just because I’ve overridden the default settings). Also, there’s some issue with the font size. Up to font size 29 it’s much too small for my eyes (1440×900 resolution), and in fact it doesn’t seem to increase at all between, say, 14 and 29. Then from 30 onwards it does increase, but by then it’s just way too big.

    1. Alex Warren

      1. Yes, there is an issue under some regional settings where it mis-parses e.g. “4.300” as “four thousand three hundred” instead of “four point three”, so you get a LOT of stars! This has been added to the Issue Tracker.

      2. If you were to reorganise the downloaded games yourself, how would Quest know where to find the files? I think you either let Quest manage the files itself, or you manage them manually, which means not using the built-in Download Manager at all – open to suggestions for how this could be made to work better though.

      3. The custom settings will be used for every game. Every game specifies a default foreground and background so there isn’t really a concept of a game having a “special” scheme. So you either use your custom colour scheme or not – you could always temporarily turn it off though, and your custom colour will be remembered for the next time you turn it on.

      Which font are you having problems with? Do you have “Large Fonts” turned on in Windows or a custom DPI setting?

  2. Peter Pears

    2 – My only suggestion would be for Quest to check whether a game has been “downloaded”, instead of checking for the file. However, I’m just one person, and one person who’s decided not to use the download manager any more at that – because I like to keep each game in its folder, and if I just use the Download Manager I’ll have a nightmarish folder with all game files in it. But as that issue hasn’t cropped up before, maybe it’s not really such a big deal.

    3a) – It might be worth implementing a “default” scheme, then, just for this purpose. If the author leaves it unchanged, the player can override it. If the author changes fonts and/or colour schemes… the player could maybe still override it, but knowing they won’t be playing it as the author intended.

    I certainly don’t want to play with the default settings unless I know that the author, later on in the game, will make font/colour changes.

    I don’t know how ADRIFT does it, but I believe it does something similar. I know for a fact I can override the default scheme, and still get shown special colours and fonts. Heck, same in Inform and TADS.

    3b – I’m using Baskerville Old Face, with no Large Fonts. The problem isn’t just that they get too big… the problem is that up to, say, 12pts*, they resize as normal; between 12pts* and 29pts they don’t change AT ALL; and after 30pts they suddenly resize again, but >30pts is much too large. Changing back to 29pts puts it as small as 12pts*. I’m using Windows 7 Pro x64.

    *not exact measurements here – I didn’t test it going DOWN, just going UP.

    PS – I don’t want to sound too picky, so let me just say, again, congratulations on getting this Beta out. Great job.

    Funny, though, playing old Quest games, I can’t drag-drop inventory items onto scenery, or right-click them… I thought I could, once, and that was how I could, via mouse, use an item with another… wasn’t it the way it worked before? If not, my bad. If so, some old games still seem to expect that behaviour, not breaking the game but crippling it.

  3. Parental Figure

    Hi! My 10-year-old son loves creating games using Quest,and I downloaded Quest 5.1 for him to try. My concern is that the options window where you can show/hide adult titles actually makes it worse… highlighting that there are adult titles! Trying to keep him from the adult games is actually my #1 concern with this whole site in general, and I appreciate your efforts to that end. You mention something about “locking out” the adult category with a registry setting… what do you mean, and how do you do that?

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