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  1. #1

    What's the benefit?


    so I subscribed for the Ultimate Edition. But now where I am here, it seems not to be a Role-Play Engine. It feels like a "D&D 5E Simulator". The reason why I am here is, that I am the Author of my own ruleset.
    I made it 10 years ago and worked on it since then with a solid group. From "Beta-Testing" to "Hey Void, whens your new Edition coming out?" was a long way.
    I heard about Fantasy Grounds and saw a nice way to spread my ruleset for free to the world and reciving feedbacks and ideas from players around the globe.

    Because of some complex calculations on some values, a PC version would be the final touch for my system. It would speed up the processes a lot and help people to get a quicker entry point.
    Wich mean... am I wrong here?!

    Fantasy Grounds advertises lots of "Make your own..." and "For each Ruleset...". But for a simple Character Sheet, i would need outstanding XML skills.
    For simple automation (Strengh + Constitution = Athletics) I need to be a LUA professional. Not because LUA is a complicated language, then more because the FG System has almost no structure and just a 4 Years old documentation.
    Sure, the "BASIC-RPG" Mode gives me a free editable sheet, but the functions are not more then an primitiv excel table.. and even this has more design features.

    I expected a simple "Editor" like WYSIWYG where i can reorder Sheet elements, push them around like i want and give basic calculations for values that need to be auto-calculated. Currently i just have a Sheet where i need to retype the whole thing if i want to add something before everything else. ... as i say.. an excel table has more features and lot more customization.

    What is the benefit of playing fantasy grounds now? With no automation, where everyone has to calculate everything on his own, where everything needs to be editited by hand.. i mean.. thats Pen and Paper.
    Why shouldnt i play with my solid group on a real table then, instead of FG? FG is not helping me in any kind of purpose as long i dont play D&D 5E (even Pathfinder or 3.5E has no automation..)

    Dont get me wrong, this is a basic question of understanding why FG instead of Tabletop. This is NO critic or offense.

    Greetings from Germany
    Last edited by VoidByte; October 8th, 2017 at 14:34.

  2. #2

    Join Date
    Jun 2013
    Isanti, MN
    FG is a tabletop that is shared over the internet. Some rulesets provide lots of automation, others provide limited automation. But at it's heart, it's a way of extending the tabletop to users around the world, so you can play with people who are not local.

  3. #3
    Quote Originally Posted by Andraax View Post
    FG is a tabletop that is shared over the internet. Some rulesets provide lots of automation, others provide limited automation. But at it's heart, it's a way of extending the tabletop to users around the world, so you can play with people who are not local.
    Ah.. I was afraid that something like that is it..

    Well thank you for the answer.

  4. #4
    damned's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Blog Entries
    Hola VoidByte

    I might start with what Fantasy Grounds is NOT...
    It is not an Editor to allow you to create code or create interactions between fields and no where does it say that it is.
    Fantasy Grounds is not just for D&D - although just like in real life and just like rpg sales figures suggest - it is a big chunk of what Fantasy Grounds is used for.
    Its not meant to be a replacement for you sitting together at the table - it was designed to enable you to game efficiently with people anywhere/elsewhere.

    Your comparison to Excel is interesting. Excel is a serious application containing millions of hours of coding. Excel does what Excel does better than any other application out there. The fact that Excel can do things that Fantasy Grounds cant is not a surprise to me

    What is Fantasy Grounds?
    It is a virtual table top.
    You can share images and text with connected players.
    You can roll dice and see and share results.

    Most of the other things that Fantasy Grounds can do are features of the ruleset.
    There are many rulesets and they vary massively in their features, automation and completeness.

    The cool thing is that there are some serious basics and frameworks baked into CoreRPG.
    But by itself you dont see the power of CoreRPG.
    Things like targeting, tables, templates, calendars, and many many more.

    You are correct - in most cases to use the power of Fantasy Grounds you want a full ruleset.
    With a full ruleset some serious magic can happen.
    And yes - this takes some serious coding.
    The fact that the doco is 4years old doesnt make much difference - its still lua and xml and you can crack open almost all the rulesets and see how they work.
    Do you have to be a programmer to do this? No - but it certainly helps if you are!

    Have a look at MoreCore - it cant do your specific example of auto updating two attributes to give you a secondary value but there are lots of other ways that this can be done.

    If you do want a complete ruleset and you dont want to do any coding then Fantasy Grounds is probably not the right platform for you.
    Dont write it off too quickly though - Fantasy Grounds is very powerful and can deliver an amazing tabletop experience.

    In terms of features - The Ultimate really only has one difference to the Standard license and that is the ability to host unlicensed players in your game.

    I hope you find what you are looking for - either the right tabletop or answers at least.

  5. #5
    Thank you Damned for your detailed Answer.
    First thing: I dont ment Excel by it's whole. You can replace it with every other piece of software that have a sheet and is able to simply calculate values together.

    What I dont get is the pricing of FG. 134€ for a software that you cant use unless you buy the ruleset packs, which will be, in case of D&D additional 224€ ..
    Its like buying the steam client, what is super handy IF you have games. But total useless if not.
    I saw the video from this big dude who always makes 720p videos where you cant read anything hes doing ("Digital Dungeon Master" on youtube). He also mentioned that free D&D core rules are nice, but if you have absolutely no
    understanding on D&D and dont own any additional stuff, you have no chance to play it out of the box.

    Also the only supported language is English.. which is not my best as you can read. And most people in most countrys on the world dont speak it. So.. reading a ruleset in a language that you barely understand?
    So we come to the Point where i see: Paying 358€ (420$) for a software that let me play a ruleset that I don't really understand with people in the USA (or the other native english countries.).. They understand everything working just with shortcuts and confuse me even more...

    But thats not the theme and i wont lose my self in this thoughts.

    All round up: Fantasy Grounds is a tabletop simulator for people that like to play with people in english-speaking-countries. Its not made for playing your own ruleset and not made to be playable without spending a ton of money for other ruleset's
    So i see: It's not what i expected.

    Thank you for helping me. At least i won some knowledge
    Last edited by VoidByte; October 8th, 2017 at 15:39.

  6. #6

    Join Date
    Jun 2013
    Isanti, MN
    With the Ultimate package, you get "Included Rulesets: D&D 3.5E, D&D 4E, D&D 5E and the Pathfinder Roleplaying Game". These rulesets include all the data from the SRD for the appropriate systems. You can find a number of community rulesets (most of which are free) in the wiki: Also, there is a community language support group that supports a number of other languages:

  7. #7
    Erin Righ's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2016
    Vernon, BC, Canada
    also there is the Lpak community project translating the FG into other languages

  8. #8
    Erin Righ's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2016
    Vernon, BC, Canada
    Crap didn't see that part of Andraax's post

  9. #9
    Zacchaeus's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2014
    There is also this extension for CEL.
    If there is something that you would like to see in Fantasy Grounds that isn't currently part of the software or if there is something you think would improve a ruleset then add your idea here

  10. #10
    The biggest benefit of Fantasy Grounds is the amazing forum community. They have answered all of my questions very quickly. And it's free. ♥
    You can find my work for D&D 5th Edition on the DMs Guild.

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