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Michael Hopcroft
February 15th, 2014, 21:14
I'm starting to build a campaign. Not a ruleset, but just a campaign. using CoreRPG Extended, to see how it would work and give me something to experiment on. I'm not ready to run it yet, but I'm laying the groundwork for future play.

The game itself won't be out until the end of the year (although a quickstart is already available). It's called Costume Fairy Adventures (http://penguinking.com/games/costume-fairy-adventures/), and its an improvisational comedy game about Fairies.

In costumes.

Having adventures.

The system poses some interesting challenges. The most important is that player characters have cards in front of them representing costumes for their Fairy PCs to wear. Costumes endow their wearer with additional abilities (because the faeries aren't smart enough to realize that shouldn't work). Automatied die rolls aren't a good idea because the number of dice rolled is based on the number of traits of farieis and costumes that can be invoked. The die mechanic is that you roll a number of D6 and take the highest single die. If the highest signle die is lower than your stat, you succeed -- the higher the rroll, the most stylish your success. If none of the dice are successes, you failed. If you roll a 6 you get a magic point (used to do certain things, like change costumes) and the GM gets a Trouble Die which he can invoke later to create trouble for your characters. There's no mapping involved for the most part, characters who are "killed" pop back into existence again as soon as the player gets bored with not existing (but all her costumes are gone and she has to draw new ones).

The main functions of the VTT are die rolling, tracking, and secret communications among players. I'd like to be about to deal out the costume cards to the players and let them be able to, if they need a reminder, display the card on the desktop or on their copy of the desktop, but that may be an advanced function.

So I'm starting with character sheets. Where do I begin. And how to I add tokens, cards and other graphics to the system for use in my game?

Michael Hopcroft
February 17th, 2014, 05:06
Tech question: Is there a way to change the thread title? I can't help but feel it would have been a more attractive topic had I actually named the game in the thread title.

Nickademus
February 17th, 2014, 06:01
I believe if you edit the post, you can change the title as well.

damned
February 17th, 2014, 06:05
I dont think so - not for us normal users anyway...

I dont think you got any answers because its not a simple question...

1. It really does look like you want to build a ruleset and not a campaign... and building a ruleset is complex...
2. SW has some card decks - you could look at how they do it (again... complex)
3. You could just share images to all players. In FG3 once shared the players can go back and reopen the images later on. You can share images with individual players if you dont want players see what others have...
4. Players can /w to each other or if using voice can create sub channels
5. Non automated dice rolling is easy :) left click, right click for additional dice and throw!
6. I dont think there is any ability for players to bring their own images (costumes) or to share them with other players without your help...

Hope that helps in some way :)

Michael Hopcroft
February 17th, 2014, 06:25
I dont think so - not for us normal users anyway...

I dont think you got any answers because its not a simple question...

1. It really does look like you want to build a ruleset and not a campaign... and building a ruleset is complex...
2. SW has some card decks - you could look at how they do it (again... complex)
3. You could just share images to all players. In FG3 once shared the players can go back and reopen the images later on. You can share images with individual players if you dont want players see what others have...
4. Players can /w to each other or if using voice can create sub channels
5. Non automated dice rolling is easy :) left click, right click for additional dice and throw!
6. I dont think there is any ability for players to bring their own images (costumes) or to share them with other players without your help...

Hope that helps in some way :)

It does. To continue the thought-experiment process, let me take these in turn.

1-2. I might want to build a ruleset (certainly all the functionality of a ruleset would help_), but I simply don't have the time or resources (ie knowledge). XML programming is something I'm completely lost in. I have the same problem with Hero Lab -- I want to alter things and create new stuff, but the prospect of trying to figure out how to do it is so daunting I never begin. With help -- substantial help -- I might be able to do something like this, but it's such a niche game that getting such help is unlikely.

3-4: This is somewhat better. The players' "hands" in Costume Fairy Adventures are not secret (a question I specifically asked the publisher in anticipation of such a response). So if sharing images is not a big deal that would be a great boon to this game. I don't yet know where images come from or go in FG. Is there a specific place where one can put graphics so that they can be used in all rulesets and campaigns should the desire present itself? The way I see it, the more pictures the better.

5: Throwing dice (once I figured it out) was a lot of fun last night.

6: BYOI is not a problem for me. The costumes come in a deck of cards (36 in the quickstart, 108 or so in the final game due out at the end of the year) that the GM deals out to the players. Each player gets three, among which they can switch back and forth as the situation requires. The costumes give them special powers (the fairies aren't smart enough to know it shouldn't work that way). The only graphic likely to come from a player is a portrait/token.

So it sounds like the campaign itself is quite doable, even if a ruleset would be a bit much. I'm in the process of building one (the very start -- all it is right now is the placeholder in CoreExtended). I'm starting right at the beginning with character sheets, which should require little to no automation.

damned
February 17th, 2014, 07:42
It does. To continue the thought-experiment process, let me take these in turn.

1-2. I might want to build a ruleset (certainly all the functionality of a ruleset would help_), but I simply don't have the time or resources (ie knowledge). XML programming is something I'm completely lost in. I have the same problem with Hero Lab -- I want to alter things and create new stuff, but the prospect of trying to figure out how to do it is so daunting I never begin. With help -- substantial help -- I might be able to do something like this, but it's such a niche game that getting such help is unlikely.

3-4: This is somewhat better. The players' "hands" in Costume Fairy Adventures are not secret (a question I specifically asked the publisher in anticipation of such a response). So if sharing images is not a big deal that would be a great boon to this game. I don't yet know where images come from or go in FG. Is there a specific place where one can put graphics so that they can be used in all rulesets and campaigns should the desire present itself? The way I see it, the more pictures the better.

5: Throwing dice (once I figured it out) was a lot of fun last night.

6: BYOI is not a problem for me. The costumes come in a deck of cards (36 in the quickstart, 108 or so in the final game due out at the end of the year) that the GM deals out to the players. Each player gets three, among which they can switch back and forth as the situation requires. The costumes give them special powers (the fairies aren't smart enough to know it shouldn't work that way). The only graphic likely to come from a player is a portrait/token.

So it sounds like the campaign itself is quite doable, even if a ruleset would be a bit much. I'm in the process of building one (the very start -- all it is right now is the placeholder in CoreExtended). I'm starting right at the beginning with character sheets, which should require little to no automation.

Sharing images is not a big deal - super easy and a basic feature of FG.
When making your images - consider the size of the images. You have 36 cards - I would aim for them to be saved in a format with a size of 200kb or less. They only need to be uploaded to the players once but that initial upload does take some time. Depending on many factors - uploading a campaign of 10mb in size to 4 players could take even as much as an hour the first time. Remember that when getting people connected up...

Have you made the 20 spin yet?

Players can load their own portraits... in fact you cant load them for the players unless you login as the player!

If you have used Psicodelixs extension - you could always bust that open and work out what needs to be changed to add just a few extra fields. Dont do it in the same extension - make them into a new extension otherwise if Psicodelix updates his your changes will get lost. You can have more than one extension loaded at a time.

Trenloe
February 17th, 2014, 09:05
Players can load their own portraits... in fact you cant load them for the players unless you login as the player!
In FG 3.0 the GM can now add portraits to player characters.

I forgot about this and have recently responded to a different thread saying you needed to login as a player - DOH!

damned
February 17th, 2014, 09:10
ooops - link to extension is here: http://www.fantasygrounds.com/forums/showthread.php?20296-New-Core-Extended-ruleset&p=166221&viewfull=1#post166221 - and another ooops - its an actual ruleset not extension... but it contains only a small number of new features.

Michael Hopcroft
February 23rd, 2014, 05:55
Well, I just downloaded an old edition of XML Notepad from Microsoft. Now if only I knew what I was looking at or where to find what I am looking for.

Trenloe
February 23rd, 2014, 09:08
Well, I just downloaded an old edition of XML Notepad from Microsoft. Now if only I knew what I was looking at or where to find what I am looking for.
It's time to read some documentation! :-o

Have a look at the Ruleset modification guide: http://www.fantasygrounds.com/modguide/ particularly the "windows and controls" section - controls are the GUI elements of Fantasy Grounds.

More information about each control can be found in the Ruleset reference guide in the "elements" section: http://www.fantasygrounds.com/refdoc/

Michael Hopcroft
February 24th, 2014, 00:33
It's time to read some documentation! :-o

Have a look at the Ruleset modification guide: http://www.fantasygrounds.com/modguide/ particularly the "windows and controls" section - controls are the GUI elements of Fantasy Grounds.

More information about each control can be found in the Ruleset reference guide in the "elements" section: http://www.fantasygrounds.com/refdoc/

Is there a way to grab some code for some of the things you want to alter and "play with it" while leaving the original intact?

Nickademus
February 24th, 2014, 00:55
Depends.

Copy the 3.5E/4E/PFRPG.pak files out of your ruleset folder. Unzip them and place them somewhere outside the FG folders. Then copy the specific file from this group to add to the extension folder each time you want to play with something.

This way FG will use your extension file, but if you mess something up you have a backup set of unzip files (and the actual FG files are never touched by you).

Trenloe
February 24th, 2014, 07:26
Is there a way to grab some code for some of the things you want to alter and "play with it" while leaving the original intact?
As Nickademus mentions you can create an extension, which can be confusing at first. So, if you want to play around you can make a copy of the ruleset and modify the copy. Info in step 1 of post #1 here http://www.fantasygrounds.com/forums/showthread.php?19033-Modifying-the-3-5e-PFRPG-ruleset

Don't be put off by the fact the thread is in the 3.5e forum and mentions 3.5e, most of posts 1 & 2 are relevant to CoreRPG too.

Michael Hopcroft
March 1st, 2014, 02:38
I've been absent from the board for a little bit -- I have a lot of these things I'm on.

As a result, I have sadly made little to no progress on learning to code.

One thing I am wondering about is building a character sheet that is easy for players to put their own information into while making sense for the game in question. In the case of CFA, for example, the character sheet needs five things: the five numerical attributes all characters have (on a scale of 1-4), the personality quirks of the character (usually two, with two to five words of text each), the characters special powers (like whether the type of fae she is can fly), someplace to keep track of her Magic Points and her Stress track, and a place to note the abilities and quirks she gets from whatever costume she happens to be wearing at the time.

Is the layout of a character sheet something you code, or can build with a WYSIWYG editor?

damned
March 1st, 2014, 08:16
Hi Michael - Im still (slowly) working on this...

Trenloe
March 1st, 2014, 11:18
Is the layout of a character sheet something you code, or can build with a WYSIWYG editor?
It currently needs to be coded in XML - which is where the GUI controls are defined. Later this year there is planned to be a kickstarter to create a ruleset wizard that should allow creation of GUI elements in a more WYSIWYG development environment.

Michael Hopcroft
March 1st, 2014, 16:19
Hi Michael - Im still (slowly) working on this...

No hurry. I was hoping to run something at FGCon, but since that's only two months away I am not counting on anything.

Michael Hopcroft
March 18th, 2014, 00:35
Wish me luck -- I'm going to Gamestorm (http://www.gamestorm.org/) this week (in Vancouver, WA -- I wonder if I might happen to run into any FG users there). And it happens that the games I'm running are two sessions of Costume Fairy Adventures (http://penguinking.com/games/costume-fairy-adventures/) and one of Golden Sky Stories (http://starlinepublishing.com/our-games/). I'm not at all sure they'll all even go off as scheduled -- they aren't the most familiar of properties, after all, and one was added at the last minute because the Thursday night RPG schedule was rather empty.

GSS makes me wonder what I would use FG for on it, since it's diceless. But there are pools of points to track and character powers to look up, so it might be useful to have FG around for an online game.

Michael Hopcroft
March 26th, 2014, 05:05
Back from my con for a couple of days now (came home Sunday night). Man that was fun. I still want to run at FGCon and still haven't decided what, so I'd still be interested in seeing what can be done with the concepts.

Mgrancey
March 31st, 2014, 01:14
Okay, pretty good with XML though not so good with LUA programming. 7 number stats and a couple of text boxes, that pretty easy to setup for a character sheet.

Images can be inserted into a module fairly easily, as I am 'efficient' I import the images, then export them as a module, letting FG handle alot of the XML coding, and simply having to create/setup links to the images.

Ror random generation, you can simply use a table, It would be 4d10 with 1-4 being a reroll. each number from 5 to 40 would each be a different 'costume'. Now this obviously uses a bell curve for randomness, so if you wanted to balance it out more, you would use a bigger range for dice. Easiest would be % dice and each costume having 2 numbers, and the rest being rerolls.

Michael Hopcroft
March 31st, 2014, 01:34
For random generation, you can simply use a table, It would be 4d10 with 1-4 being a reroll. each number from 5 to 40 would each be a different 'costume'. Now this obviously uses a bell curve for randomness, so if you wanted to balance it out more, you would use a bigger range for dice. Easiest would be % dice and each costume having 2 numbers, and the rest being rerolls.

For online games, Penguin King suggests rolling 2d6, but instead of combining them designating one die as the tens and the other ones. This in turn is matched to the deck to determine which costume you draw. The classic sportsgame APBA Baseball uses something similar to generate play results.

Trenloe
March 31st, 2014, 03:07
Ror random generation, you can simply use a table, It would be 4d10 with 1-4 being a reroll. each number from 5 to 40 would each be a different 'costume'. Now this obviously uses a bell curve for randomness, so if you wanted to balance it out more, you would use a bigger range for dice. Easiest would be % dice and each costume having 2 numbers, and the rest being rerolls.
In FG 3.0 tables support any number range - if the range is outside of a specific die to roll then a random number generator will be used and you don't see a dice rolled. Just like if you type /die 1d45 in the chat window, for example.

Michael Hopcroft
March 31st, 2014, 03:14
In FG 3.0 tables support any number range - if the range is outside of a specific die to roll then a random number generator will be used and you don't see a dice rolled. Just like if you type /die 1d45 in the chat window, for example.

That will come in handy when the full game is released, with at least seventy more available costumes.

Mgrancey
March 31st, 2014, 03:51
For online games, Penguin King suggests rolling 2d6, but instead of combining them designating one die as the tens and the other ones. This in turn is matched to the deck to determine which costume you draw. The classic sportsgame APBA Baseball uses something similar to generate play results.

Not sure how that is supposed to work for 36 possible costumes.


For random generation, you can simply use a table, It would be 4d10 with 1-4 being a reroll. each number from 5 to 40 would each be a different 'costume'. Now this obviously uses a bell curve for randomness, so if you wanted to balance it out more, you would use a bigger range for dice. Easiest would be % dice and each costume having 2 numbers, and the rest being rerolls.

Ah nice, didn't realize it had changed. I will need to update my Plottwist cards table.

Michael Hopcroft
March 31st, 2014, 16:18
Not sure how that is supposed to work for 36 possible costumes.

Since there are 36 possible results (starting at 1-1 and ending at 6-6) it works fine. That's probably why they chose 36 costumes for the Quickstart.

Mgrancey
March 31st, 2014, 18:04
Yes with 2d6 there are 36 possible combinations, but how does using a d6 for 10's and d6 for 1's work? You would be missing 7,8,9,0. so 1-10, 17-20, and 27-30 are impossible. Unless it was meant to use it as the d6 and d6 combination like you said but saying 2d6 to generate ten's and one's implies that you are supposed to making a number rather then a combination.

Michael Hopcroft
April 30th, 2014, 23:28
The Kickstarter backers got some more playtest/preview goodies, including a new adventure and an enlarged deck with 76 costumes. A lot of the new costumes are fantasy-game oriented, appropriate because the new adventure is a spoof of AD&D-style dungeon crawling (especially the notoriously lethal Tomb of Horrors). Since faeries can't really die, it is theoretically OK to put them in a dungeon full of massive and frequently random lethality (the GM can spring several unavoidable TPKs on them with no consequences for the players because they pop right back into existence at the base camp).

A different randomizer would be needed to distribute the larger deck than d6+d6. The completed game upon release will have a deck with more than a hundred costumes.