How to make your own decks

When we came up with this, we wanted to design adventure games. So this game comes packed with the deck that we used in the 1st season of the YouTube show, and it’s geared mainly towards adventure game design.

But the Home Edition lets you create your own decks to play, and this gives you endless opportunities to have your own fun. Don’t like adventure games? Cool; you can make it about ANY kind of game. Don’t like games at all? Fine; you can say you’re writing a movie, or a book, or a tv-show, or whatever you want.

This section will show you how to build your own custom deck.

Anatomy of a deck XML

The card decks are located in the folder “Decks” and are in XML format. We have included a “template.xml” which has the bare minimum of cards for you to get started, or you can take a look at the cards from the 1st season of our show for inspiration, which is “default.xml”.

Here’s how it works: You can put in as many cards as you like. The minimum requirement is that there is, of course, at least one of each (character, location, task and modifier), as well as at least one minor and one major twist. It doesn’t care if there are more of one type of card or twist than the other, though, so just go nuts.

Every deck must start by identifying itself thusly:

   <deck name="Whatever">

And every deck must end by closing that tag at the very bottom of the file:


Adding cards

Between those two tags, you can put in your cards. Here’s the syntax for a card:

    <location id="1">
      <value>The Gobi desert</value>

The first line identifies what type of card it is. They can either be “location,” “character,” “task” or “modifier.”

The first line also includes a unique ID. *EVERY* card must have a unique ID. We cannot stress this enough. If you neglect to give a card an ID, the game won’t be able to mark that card as played. If you give two cards the same ID, then the game will mark both those cards as played, even though it’s only displayed one of them. That’s bad. Don’t do that.

The second line is the actual card itself. Whatever you put between the <value></value> tags are printed verbatum in the game, with the exception of “task” cards which will automatically put the word “must” in front of the value. So, a “task” card with the value “rummage through their sister’s sock drawer” will display in the game as “MUST rummage through their sister’s sock drawer.”

The third line denotes whether the card has been played or not. If the value is “0,” then the card is unplayed. If the value is “1,” then the card has been marked as played and won’t be dealt when you play. It stands to reason, then, that when adding in new cards, you should always set this value to “0.”

Finally, the fourth line “closes” the card. Of course, it must match what you put in the first line, so if it’s a “task,” you would put “</task>”. Don’t forget this line. The deck will be unplayable if you forget to “close” a card.

Adding twists

Adding twists works the same way as adding cards. A twist has the following syntax:

   <minorTwist id="5">
     <value>This is a minor twist.</value>

As you can see, there’s no difference, other than the name of the opening and closing tag. Twists are named “minorTwist” and “majorTwist”.

How to play custom decks

Simple. Once you’ve created your custom deck, put it in the “Decks” folder. The folder was created where you put the game .exe. The game simply looks in this folder for xml files, and, if it finds any, adds them to the dropdown menu in the game.

Before you start the game, you can select the deck you want to play from the dropdown menu next to the “Begin” button.

There you go! Custom play ahoy!