Hint pages- good or bad thing to include

Ok, just asking for everyone’s opinion here. Do you think that a hints page is a good thing to include. (I haven’t seen any other stories with them in here on COG that’s all).

The thing is my story does branch in places that are not always obvious on a play through and it seems like they’re often getting missed. I have set achievements to let everyone know there’s more content there but I’m wondering if it’s just going to frustrate readers or if it’ll be seen as more of a challenge.

I’m not taking about a walk through, just hints.
For example (And I’ll flag it as a semi-spoiler for anyone who doesn’t want to know just in case)
How do I get the “Achievement in itself” award. Answer: Have you ever managed to flunk a subject really badly?

It pretty much tells you what you need to get it, without actually giving you a walk through as to how to get there. I don’t want to wreck the story in advance though, which might happen if people read the hints and know what is going to happen in advance.

Anyway, just undecided as to whether I should write one or not.

On a different note, is there a way to link extra pages like this through either a button or a selection on the stat’s screen?

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Giving hints wouldn’t necessarily be a bad thing if you think the player may need them. If you were to do something like this, my suggestion would be to set up a boolean

*create hints_enabled "true"

then ask the player at the beginning if they want them (enable/disable hints) and then whenever you come to a point in the game you feel the player may need hints you run an *if check

*if hints_enabled = "true"
    [i]Hint:I hear the grass is greener on the other side[/i]

Or perhaps you could include them as choices? The last choice on the list could be something like, ‘Actually, I’d like a hint to point me in the direction I want to go’, then have the hint, then loop back to the choice.

Or if you wanted to get really fancy, you could have a ‘hint’ option on the stats page and create a variable that keeps track of which scene the player is currently using, and give options to see hints appropriate to that point in the game.


Another option might be to include these hints as a separate page in your stats screen. If you have to click an extra, labeled button to see them, then nobody who doesn’t want to has to, and someone who might have originally not wanted hints doesn’t have to start a whole new run for the one hint they need. I believe creating a separate page in the stat screen can be done with the *page_break command, or even with a *choice command, something like

  #I need a hint! (Hints Page)
    *goto hints
  #What's a ____, anyway? (Lore Page)
    *goto lore
*label hints
Yadda yadda.

*label lore
And more stuff!

Edit: yeah, what @Fiogan said.

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I was thinking something along the lines of what @Jaybirdy was saying with a separate screen and choices for various storylines and achievements. So if you don’t want to go to the hints screen you don’t have to (Although I know it can be a temptation.)

So say you’d go to an actual hints screen, select “How do I get to blah” and the hint would come up from there. Problem is you’ll get storyline in advance if you click hints ahead of where you are (although I guess that isn’t my problem if people want to do that).

I didn’t really want them in the story text itself, especially since some of the branches and multifactorial or flowing on from part of the story. I didn’t really want choices in the actual text sort of saying, hey if you want this to happen choose this.

The hints=true thing is an interesting idea. I’d probably still prefer having something that didn’t put all the hints out there, just the ones someone actually asked for.
Maybe I could use it to determine what hints you can get into by setting extra stats (ie after you reach x part in the book, the hints for x become visable.) Might start making things more complicated than they need to be though or locking people out of things they can’t find at all, so don’t know.

Another thought might be to make hints accessible only on a second play-through, with a simple, pre-set pass code (which I know, would quickly be findable on-line once the game was released). You could give the code out at the end, after a player beats the game. Then at the beginning of the game, instead of the ‘hints off/on’ option, you could have an ‘input code for extras’ text box and open access to hints that way. That way people would be earning their hints as well, so to speak.

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That’s an interesting idea Fiogan, I could pull that off it I hadn’t just put a whole lot of manual save points in which stop people going though to the end screen on their first run though if they don’t want to.

For the moment, I’ve attached a hint screen to the stat’s page with a warning as to what it is so people don’t have to look if they don’t want to and I’ll see what everyone thinks and change it if needed.

Doesn’t Heroes Rise use a couple of hints systems? There’s the legendary guide unlockable, and the Mechip Warning System.

I think you unlock the guide at the end of your first playthrough? You could do something like that?


I didn’t realise that @FairyGodfeather, I’ve played that one and don’t remember there being hints. I think maybe you had to pay for an extra guide? Or maybe I’m just remembering wrong. Good to know there is another one out there and it did work with the story though :slight_smile:

There was a piece of in-game technology (I think it was called the Early Warning System?) that would give you hints, especially about battle tactics. It could be unlocked with either real or in-game money (and then stayed unlocked.) I unlocked it after my first playthrough; my habit of playing through as a villain first paid off there.

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Yeah I loved that part of heroes rise. I unlocked it with in game money.

You could do a combination of the previously mentioned ideas… In start up create a boolean password setup. At the end give them the correct password that unlocks the hints page. Then at the start you could ask them “…Unlock Hints Page…” or “…Contintue without hints page…”. Make the hints page display in the stat menu with an “if” choice.

^^^—this was something I planned to do with hints on how to reach the hidden achievements in my wip.

Let me know if this makes sense to you or not, I can pm you an example.

That doesn’t sound like a bad idea @Silverstone :slight_smile: Is there something around that explains how to set passwords? I don’t remember seeing how to do that in the tutes on the main page? Or do you have something like how you set a character’s name and then set the hint’s option for something like: *selectable if (password = “what ever the password is”) #continue to hints page
(Not sure if that makes sense).

Nocturnal showed me how when I was noob :smiley:

But you’d tweak it to suit your purpose. So unlocked could be “hints” or whatever you want to name it. So if they enter the correct password you could write “Hints can now be found in the stat menu” . In the choicescript_stats.txt you’d have something like *choice or *fake_choice, then *selectable_if (hints) #Continue to hints page. *if should also work if you don’t want it to show up at all. The way you mentioned would also work. (Use a similar coding in my other wip) :smile:

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^^^— that’s how I would have done it. —note— I used a goto_scene (like my other pages) but I didn’t make it infinitely loop. It can be done but I read somewhere (don’t remember where) but they can create problems.