View Full Version : FG vs OpenRPG

Black Cavalier
August 25th, 2005, 08:27
I'm looking at some different online RPG games & was wondering if anyone could list the functional differences between Fantasy Grounds & OpenRPG. I know FG is much prettier & slicker looking, but for actual funcionality, what can FG do that OpenRPG can't? What about the GUI? How easy is it to work with one over the other?

August 25th, 2005, 13:49
What about the GUI? How easy is it to work with one over the other?

I can't vouch for every aspect of OpenRPG, but I have used it for a couple of online trial sessions where we ended up concluding "the tools just aren't good enough yet". Mind you, since then bandwidth has been upgraded so possibly OpenRPG would fare better today than it did 18 months ago.

I think not, however.

OpenRPG has the concept of a tree structure, where you essentially store all your info. Various systems plug into this tree structure and use it to display information like character sheets. By nature of being open - it is OPEN RPG after all - OpenRPG is the jack of all trades. But it is, inevitably, also the master of none.

I found the tree structure extremely unintuitive and I'm a programmer by day - so I ought to at least see the reasoning behind some of the decisions. It is not very slick and complex to find information, I found.

The big difference, I'd say, and a worthy summary of OpenRPG vs. Fantasy Grounds, is that Fantasy Grounds store its information like you would on a table ("here's some pictures and maps, here's some character sheets, here's some notes") and OpenRPG stores information like a programmer would store it in his head ("All information must be processed, hence I store all information in one central place. Most information expands on other information, so character sheets are like NPC sheets only with more information"). It's logical, certainly, but not very intuitive.

August 25th, 2005, 14:26
Also keep in mind that FantasyGround is merely a tool to replace a real table with real dice. It does come with handy tools to display maps, store text, items, tokens, etc but the focus of FG is above all on having a real PnP experience over a network, enabling players worldwide to have a closest to the real thing kinda game.

OpenRPG and many other tools bombard its users with lots of screens, tables, etc, making it feel like you´re struggling your way through some M$ application, IMHO taking away the sheer joy of roleplaying. FG brings that feeling back... :)

And now that I read the post above this one, I just said the same thing LOL :)

August 25th, 2005, 15:26
The main difference between the two, having played both, is the simplicity.

FG is an intuitive program, where information is stored like a binder full of items. You click a tab and, WHAM! There is your information. The most important difference, is how FG is used.
FG is used as an emulator for table top roleplaying. You have your dice, chat, NPC cards etc.

OpenRPG is an open source project, that unfortunatly is crippled by the one thing that makes it attractive. It is free.
The one thing that bothered me playing OpenRPG is all the requests that people were making to make things automatic, to have this token do this, to click on something, and this happens, etc. etc.. What this serves to do is make a program bloated, with a steep learning curve. God forbid you want to do something new in the program, then you have to take a few college courses to get the job done.

I bought FG when it first came out, and I still love it today. There have been ups and downs, and the developers are a little bit slower than I am used to for fixing things, but I attribute that to the job being well done in the first place.

Remember, you get what you pay for. If you can handle a bloated '69 cordova, for free, all the power to you. If you like refined, 2005 Jetta, then this program is definately for you. If you opt to buy FG instead of the Jetta, think of it this way, you are saving 23,950$

Hope this helps,


August 30th, 2005, 23:47
The main reason that I personally am, and will keep using OpenRPG is because Fantasy Grounds doesn't run on anything besides Windows. I don't use Windows, but Linux.
OpenRPG runs fine for me.