Dialogue fragments

"Dialogue fragment" - What's this?

Dialogue fragments are individual lines of dialogue, so to speak.

The image above shows a dialogue object (the background canvas 1 on which child elements are placed) and a network of dialogue fragments 2 as well as a hub 3.

Anatomy of a "dialogue fragment" object

The most obvious element of a dialogue fragment is the speaker entity 1, which is the character saying the phrase. The field for the speaker entity shows a lot of information at a glance: The entity's name, avatar image and color.

Assigning a color to entities becomes greatly helpful while editing dialogue, since unique entity colors help to quickly read and grasp a dialogue flow.

Select an entity in the navigator and use the color picker to assign a color.

Below the speaker entity field are preview text 2 for optional usage in menus, stage directions 3 for VO recordings or motion capture, followed by the actual dialogue line 4.

In contrast to dialogues and flow fragments, dialogue fragments have only one input and output pin 5, since they can be considered an atomic unit in the flow that cannot be further broken down. It is impossible to submerge in a dialogue fragment, so no inner content can lead to a branching situation where multiple input our output pins would become necessary.

Pin conditions

As described in greater detail on the conditions & instructions page, input pins can carry conditions for the fragment to be triggered and output pins can be used to describe instructions.

Simply double-click a pin to open the "edit pin"-dialog:

Creating dialogue elements

In "flow view"

To create dialogue elements in flow view, you can ...
  • ... use the drag factory in the toolbar. (Simply drag objects onto the canvas)

  • ... use the context menu. Right-click on empty space and select "New -> Dialogue fragment" (or "Hub", "Jump").

  • ... CTRL + SHIFT + click on empty space. The default node is created at the mouse cursor position.
    To change the default node, use the radiobutton in the "New" context menu.

  • ... Drag a connection out of a pin. When "dropping" the connection on empty space, an object creation menu will pop up.

In other views

In list and tiles views, dialogue element creation is relatively similar. Instead of the drag fractory explained above, simply use the toolbar icons for creating dialogue fragments 1, hubs 2 and jumps 3.

"Dialogue fragment" property sheet

All about the property sheet view in general can be found here.

Click the "property sheet" icon in the view selector to access the property sheet.

This is a basic dialogue fragment's property sheet:

The sheet begins with an automatically generated summary text 1, containing the speaking entity followed by a short version of the dialogue line. This text is used as the dialogue fragment's title in the navigator and other occurrences. Since it is a generated text, it cannot be edited.

Just like any other property sheet, the one for a dialogue fragment divides its properties into tabs 2, the "General" tab, the "Template" tab.

"General" tab

Below the summary line, a big avatar image represents the speaking entity. The dialogue line can even be given to another character by right-clicking the avatar and selecting "Choose target..." 3 from the context menu. This bring up a dialog for re-assigning the speaking entity.

The stage directions field 4 can be used to describe how the sentence should be delivered by the voice actor and where emphasis should be placed.

The full text area 5 contains the actual dialogue line in full length, as it will be used for VO recordings and appear in subtitles.

The shorter preview text 6 can optionally be used if the screen space for multiple-choice menus is limited or a summary text is required for whatever purpose.

A technical name 7 can be given to ease the handling of this dialogue fragment when parsing the XML export or using the articy:draft API

The External ID is normally empty but can be filled with an ID this dialogue fragment carries inside another application like an inhouse localization tool. Using this external ID provides an convenient way of opening the currently viewed dialogue fragment within another application. Read here to learn more.

The Object ID is the primary ID to identify any object within articy:draft. Normally you do not need to bother about this ID and you can't change it anyway.
In previous versions this was a GUID but now we changed it into a 64-bit Integer. This is important to know if you use the articy:draft API because instead if handling GUIDs you now need to handle this new ID type.

"Template" tab

Like all other articy:draft objects, dialogue fragments can inherit additional properties from a template. Imaginable templates for dialogue lines could be: "Quest log relevant", "Item exchange", etc.! See the templates section for details. Click "Select template" to bring up a template browser. Once you've selected a template, you can apply the template's default color to the dialogue line using the "apply color" button.

This makes sense when you started writing the dialogue snippet without a template assigned and later wish to convert it into a - let's say - dialogue line with item exchange. You can assign a template at any time, but this won't change the dialogue fragment's color. If you wish to keep it consistent in such a way that all "item exchange" dialogue lines appear dark blue, you can overwrite the color with the template.

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