Area Header

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There are two types of Area headers.

Basic Area Header

The syntax for the header is:


A: This is the string "#AREA " without the quotes. Following the string, on the same line, is a bunch of text which MUST be laid out precisely in order to keep the area list in neat columns.

B: This is the level range. It starts with a { followed by the low range followed by the high range followed by a }. The field with is 7 positions, and all must be used with { in the first position and } in the 7th.

C: This is the author's name. It starts with a space in position 8, followed by up to 8 characters for the name. Unused character places should be padded with spaces. Position 17 must be a space.

D: This is the name of the area. It starts in position 18. You are allowed up to 20 characters for the name, but you do not have to pad the unused positions with spaces.

E: This is the tilda (the squiggly hyphen).

F: This is the area wide flag denoting the kind of area it is. It is a letter "F" followed by a space followed by a value. The value is chosen from the appropriate part of the flag list, and these values may be combined.

This an example of a classic area header:

#AREA { 1 2} Author Area_Name~ F 1

If this block is used, it is IMPERATIVE it is the FIRST line of the file.

Area Header Two

the Area Header creation page on the Apprentice's Workshop

In 2014, Tynian created a new format for Area Headers. It allows for the listing of multiple contributing authors as well as general information about the zone, which can be accessed using the AREA command. (E.G: AREA AERIE VOLANT) It is the preferred area header style, but the information for the classic header is retained here for historical purposes. It is also available as the default area header when creating zones in the Apprentice's Workshop area writing tool.

It should be noted that the Updated date field is system generated, however the installation date is not. That date should be populated by the Area Coordinators upon zone install.

When formatted, the header looks like this:

Format 2
Name Aerie Volant~
Installed 2014-03-22
Revision $Revision: 1.11 $
Updated $Date: 2014/07/01 03:21:50 $
Author Cordir Pitt Kerriariadne~
The Aerie Volant is an Aara racial home town for the Outland Frontier,
carved out of a white stone cliff that overlooks the Maelmordian Sea.
It is open to all levels, but be warned - the guards are protective and
those of other races may find there is no welcome for them here. Young
aarakocrans living in the Aerie can frolic in the pool at the base of the
cliff or soar high above the cliffs in the strong breezes. The abundant
food found in the Sava River is not far away.
Flags City End


Area Name: This is the name of the zone.
Installation Date: This is the date of original installation. This date should be populated by the Area Coordinators upon zone install.
Revision Date: This is system generated and should not be mucked with.
Author: This is all of the contributing authors for the zone. Separate the names with spaces. Please do not use ampersands or commas.
Description: This one or two paragraph summary of the zone will be accessible to players, so keep that in mind when crafting this content. You should provide basic information, but not reveal secrets.
Flags: These are the default settings for the zone, including the type (manmade or natural) and the terrain.

If creating an area by hand, the following values MUST be used:

FORMAT <number> e.g. Format 2 - Specifies the format "version." In order to maintain compatibility with the standard #AREA header, the FORMAT element must be first.
'''*''' - literal asterisk. Line comment.
AUTHOR <string name name [...]> e.g. Author Tynian Maurice IvoryTiger~ - Lists one or more author names. Among other things, the area command will search for authors. For example, Pitt is credited as a go-author for Volant, and AREA PITT will show Volant.
DESCRIPTION <string> e.g. Description This sample area is admired by none.~
END - Ends the #AREA block
FLAGS <text> <text> [...] - e.g. Flags manmade city forest 16 End - Provides one or more area flags. Will also accept numerical flag numbers. Must end with 'End'.
HIGHLEVEL <num> - e.g. Highlevel 50 - Provides the recommended highest level for the area.
INSTALLED <YYYY-MM-DD> - e.g. Installed 2014-07-01 - Installation date.
LOWLEVEL <num) e.g. Lowlevel 1 - Provides the recommended lowest level for the area.
REVISION $Revision$ - The value must be this exact format. The source control program will substitute the file 'version' for $Revision$, which the game parses.
UPDATED $Date$ - The value must be this exact format. The source control software will substitute the file last "check in" time for $Date$, which the game parses.