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 HeroChat - Our new ingame chat system.

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PostSubject: HeroChat - Our new ingame chat system.   Tue Mar 29, 2011 3:25 pm

Features
While HeroChat began as a modest chat channel plugin, it has grown into a comprehensive alternative to Minecraft's built-in chat system. This page covers the core elements of HeroChat and the various commands available to users.

Channels
Chatting on large servers can quickly get out of hand as messages fly by and keeping track of conversations often becomes results in nothing but confusion and headache. HeroChat attempts to alleviate this issue through the introduction of its core feature: chat channels.

A chat channel's purpose is to isolate particular conversations so that every player doesn't have to read every message; it is analogous to a channel in IRC. Channels are often created with a particular purpose or category of discussion in mind such as trade, help, or town-specific chat. Players interested in a discussion can join the appropriate channel and partake in the conversation. Channels can be referred two by either their full name or their nickname, both of which are defined by the channel's creator and serve to identify the type of discussion meant for the channel.

Channels are designed to be highly configurable and therefore can vary greatly. Among other things, a channel can be...

•colored
•hidden
•password protected
•forced upon users
•moderated (including kicks and bans)
•restricted to only certain groups to join/speak
•censored using regular expressions

Local Channels
Regular channels as described above broadcast messages to anyone who has joined the channel. Local channels, on the other hand, only broadcast messages to players within the broadcasting range of the player sending the message. By default, this broadcasting range is 100 blocks, but this can be configured by the server administrator. Sending messages to a local channel is the equivalent of shouting - only those near you will hear what you say.

Commands
HeroChat tries to provide commands that are simple and intuitive, it is still worth explaining each of them here. Square brackets denote required parameters, while parentheses denote optional parameters. The [channel] parameter can be either a channel's full name or nickname and is not case sensitive.

/ch help (page|create)
Displays a help menu listing a brief description of all the available commands.

/ch list (page)
Displays a list of visible channels.

/ch who
Displays a list of players in your active channel. Admins are prefixed with a @, while moderators are followed by a *.

/ch [channel] (password)
Sets your active channel. All future messages will be directed to this channel.

/ch join [channel] (password) or /join [channel] (password)
Joins a channel, but doesn't change your active channel. You can be in multiple channels at once.

/ch leave [channel] or /leave [channel]
Leaves a channel.

/qm [channel] [message] or /[channel] [message]
Sends a quick message to a channel without changing your active channel.

/ch ignore (player)
If no player name is given, your current ignore list is displayed. If a name is given, you will ignore or unignore that player.

/ch create [name] [nick] (color:c) (-options) * * *
Creates a new channel. The c in the color parameter should be replaced with a hexadecimal digit representing a color. The various options are described in their own section below.

/ch remove [channel] * *
Removes a channel.

/ch mod [channel] [player] * *
Grants moderator status to a player over a channel.

/ch kick [channel] [player] * *
Kicks a player from a channel.

/ch ban [channel] (player) * *
If no player name is given, the current ban list is displayed. If a name is given, you will ban or unban the player.

/ch reload *
Loads any manual changes to the HeroChat configuration file.

/ch mute [channel] (player) * *
If no player name is given, the channel's mute list is displayed. If a name is given, you will toggle muting the player for this channel only.

/ch gmute (player) *
If no player name is given, the current global mute list is displayed. If a name is given, you will toggle globally muting the player.

/ch toggle [channel] * *
Toggles the channel. If a channel is disabled, only admins and moderators can speak in it.

* You must have the herochat.admin permission to use this command.
* * You must have the herochat.admin permission or be a moderator of the channel to use this command.
* * * You must have the herochat.create permission to use this command.

For in-game help on a specific command, users can type /ch [command] ? where [command] is the command's name. For example, /ch ignore ? provides information on the ignore command.

Creating Channels
As mentioned above, the /ch create [name] [nick] (color:c) (-options) command is used to create a channel. However, this command deserves a little extra attention because of the many options it provides.

Options available to everyone:

-h # Hidden from the /ch list command's list of visible channels
-j # Shows join and leave messages whenever players enter or exit the channel
Options available to admins only:

-a # Forces new users to automatically join the channel upon first login
-q # Allows users to use the quick message shortcuts on this channel
-f # Forces users to stay in this channel (they get an error if they try to leave)
These options can be combined, ie. a channel that is both forced and hidden would be created with -hf as the option parameter.
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