- For the Hugo game by Kent Tessman, see: Down (game).
Down is awkward to represent on a two-dimensional map that already associates the bottom edge of the map with south. Vertical pathways may be drawn differently than level pathways, and often have to be explicitly labeled as upward or downward paths.
The DOWN command
Typing DOWN means GO DOWN or WALK DOWN. That is, direct the player character downward from their current location. Since most PCs are human and can't fly, this usually means that the character should implicitly use whatever nearby thing would normally help them descend, so DOWN might mean CLIMB DOWN STAIRS when there's a stairway, or CLIMB DOWN TREE when the PC is in a tree branch, and so on.
DOWN may even work on the very simplest of elevators, where the elevator itself isn't really implemented at all; it's assumed you just take the elevator down to the next lower floor. (When the elevator is implemented, a mere DOWN typically won't work, but you should be aware that both versions of elevators are possible.)
DOWN may also mean JUMP, which is potentially dangerous for player characters' health. If your character is at the top of a cliff and you want to try climbing down safely, you should try CLIMB DOWN CLIFF. If DOWN means JUMP, either might make the PC jump off the cliff and die.
With the understanding of all of the above, assuming there's an downward exit and nothing is blocking or hindering the character, the PC will travel downward to an adjacent location.
UP may be redirected into another directional command or vice-versa. For example, if there's a set of stairs going down at the south end of a hallway, either SOUTH or DOWN ought to do same thing: move the PC down the stairs.
DOWN may be ambiguous in some contexts if there's more than one method to descend. If it makes a difference whether the PC climbs down the rungs or the rope to get to the bottom of the well, the game should generate a disambiguation question, asking if the player means to CLIMB DOWN THE RUNGS or CLIMB DOWN THE ROPE.
Down in other languages
Directions like DOWN tend to be implemented both as room properties and as objects in their own right. The DOWN command, however, tends to be parsed or reinterpreted as a GO command acting on the "down" object.
|Code Compare: Down|
|ADRIFT 4:||Move Down to Cellar|
|Inform 6:||The d_to property and d_obj object|
|Inform 7:||The down direction|
|TADS 3:||The down link property, the downDirection object,|
the Floor class, and defaultFloor and defaultGround objects