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  1. #1

    Growing list of features I am finding that FGU just lacks.

    I've bought a copy of FGU ultimate for myself, and for another DM in my community. I have plans to buy multiple more copies for the other DMs too. I want FGU to be great, I want it to be the universal tool used across the board for my entire community, but lately, frustration has been mounting. THis time from me instead of just my players. I expected frustration from my players as they are made to learn/use a new program. FGU is a bit front-heavy in its learning curve, in my opinion. But each week or two I try to address one of the frustrations and spread that news/information to each of the games I play. Over time I am starting to find that some things that should be easily addressed, are either exceptionally complicated to the point of blatant stupidity, or there is no reasonable solution at all.

    I end up last night asking all of my players to contribute to a google doc some of the issues they are having.

    https://docs.google.com/document/d/1...it?usp=sharing <--- this link does contain profanity and I've been asked to mark it as NSFW as a result. Here you go.

    Most of them decided specifically NOT to do so but even so the list has grown shockingly quickly in my opinion. I had intended to wait a couple days and go down the list myself and see what issues I can find a solution to before I posted it, but I met another frustrating thing today that has caused me to decide not to wait.


    I Attachment 46173

    I decided one of the first complaints I would try to address is how the vast majority of the 3.5e spells are only half put in. It doesn't matter if I use the partial SRD that comes with FGU, or the pathfinder version, or the complete SRD accessory I paid for, it's incomplete. As one can see in the example in the image above, a very common spell such as cure light wounds. Will save should make it harmless on a living creature, but do half damage on the undead. Well, there is no save on the spell in all three versions. Plus, in all three versions, it heals both living and undead. It doesn't damage undead. Seems like that should be a base feature taken into consideration in the base game. It's an extremely core feature of most fantasy RPGs. It would be like forgetting to add swords.

    The matter gets compounded however by the fact there is no means for me to add this to the spell itself. Sure, I can edit it on a player's sheet to add a will save. Sure I can edit it on a player's sheet to add a damage function to the spell. But I run 4 games a week. When one or more of those end I am sure I will run more games in the future. The fact that I can't add this to the spell in the master list is severely frustrating. More than one person has access to this spell in every one of my parties, either through a character list or wands or some other item. Having to go through 10 sheets in a week to add what should have already been included, seems pretty well frustrating and on the far side of dumb. Yes, I could explain it to each party as well and make them do it, but again that's still more work than if I could just fix the spell once and be done with it.

    Yet there are other spells that are even worse. Ray of Enfeeblement is a great example. I was trying to figure out how to make that work yesterday and I find threads/posts on these forums going back 6 years trying to figure out how to make that broken spell work. Turns out the solution is to open a person's sheet and add 6 different effect lines because nobody thought to have spells be able to apply the effects they exist for, and a dice roll to go with it. So for each person that uses Ray of Enfeeblement I have to tell them to make an effect for -2 Str, -3 Str, -4 Str, -5 Str, -6 Str, -7 Str, -8 Str, -9 Str, -10 Str, and -11 Str on their spell then roll dice manually to determine each one, then apply it. Touch of Idiocy takes it a step further yet because now it required 18 different effects because it's 1d6 to each of the three mental stats.

    I leaned hard into Fantasy Grounds because one of the problems with 3.5e D&D was that when you are doing everything by hand or having to type stuff up, fights could take a crazy long time. It certainly does speed things up dramatically, for fighters. But the further you get from one-dimensional combat the more it slows down to weaknesses in Fantasy Grounds and the inability to prep cleaning, the more things slow down. The time is being eaten more in other parts of the sessions. Given that players can't work on their sheets without me booting up the game, the obvious solution is an increase in my workload between sessions for me to go fix things for everyone. But even that can't be done properly because I can't fix the master copy of some of any of these spells. That is literally the big source of frustration for me at this specific moment. I can't fix Cure Light Wounds once, I have to go fix it 10 times in 10 different locations.


    Note 1: Yes, this is more or less a repost. I posted this in 'House of Healing - Unity' section and several people suggested I might get more assistance here, so tossing a new post here.
    Note 2: I am not interested in a refund, and can't really get one anyway. While the copy I bought for one of my other DMs is less than 30 days old the copy I use myself came from the Kickstarter. I am not interested in my money back, or walking away from FGU. It's better than any other VTT I have touched before. I just want to see some of these gaping holes in it's functions fixed.

  2. #2
    What you probably need is a (spell)module.
    You can load this into every of your campaigns with only entering the data once in the module.

    How to do this (quick & dirty):
    1. Create a new 3.5 campaign, call it 'DEV - Module Spells' or so.
    2. Create an empty PC
    3. Give him a spell class
    4. Create the Spell manually with all info you want (components, description, etc.)
    5. Create all Effects you want and need (here are many effects listed https://fantasygroundsunity.atlassia...src=1511947769)
    6. Create a group in Sidebar -> Spells
    7. Drag your created spell into that group
    8. type /export and specify the information as you want
    9. Load the module in your campaign and drag the spell onto the charsheet - voilá

    https://fantasygroundsunity.atlassia...src=-805866886

    This can also be done via XML editing (if you're comfortable with that). For many spells this is way faster.

    Check out https://www.fantasygrounds.com/forum...FRPG-Spellbook, unzip the .mod file and check out how they've done it. Or even use the module.

    EDIT:
    Start slow and steady, only create what you really need. Otherwise you find yourself trying to get the perfect spell/effect/monster for the last 1% instead of playing.
    Last edited by Zarestia; April 29th, 2021 at 01:02.
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  3. #3
    Quote Originally Posted by Zarestia View Post
    How to do this (quick & dirty):
    1. Create a new 3.5 campaign, call it 'DEV - Module Spells' or so.
    2. Create an empty PC
    3. Give him a spell class
    4. Create the Spell manually with all info you want (components, description, etc.)
    5. Create all Effects you want and need (here are many effects listed https://fantasygroundsunity.atlassia...src=1511947769)
    6. Create a group in Sidebar -> Spells
    7. Drag your created spell into that group
    8. type /export and specify the information as you want
    9. Load the module in your campaign and drag the spell onto the charsheet - voilá
    You know what.
    Thank you.
    It's a step and a half of extra work but almost exactly what I was hoping for.
    I never once thought of dragging spells off the player sheet back to the spells list, or making a new spell group. The idea of being able to send a spell from a character sheet into the spell list never even remotely occured to me.

    I am Dyslexic so staring at XML is frustrating even if I am not trying to actually do anything to it. So making the spells from within FGU itself is what I expected to have to do. I expected it to be more tedious but I expected it as my only option short of trying to bribe someone else.

  4. #4
    https://www.fantasygrounds.com/forum...FRPG-Spellbook

    This module while specific to Pathfinder, has most of the effects that the FGU engine supports built in the spells, a lot of spells are the same in both PFRPG and D&D3.5, and some are different but with small changes (like Silence).
    So you could use the module as a guideline, and copy the spells to your own module, and make the changes for those that need it.

  5. #5
    From you list I will awnser some of those I can:
    Problems with no solution
    1-Take a look at Bmos aura effect: https://www.fantasygrounds.com/forum...l=1#post596501
    4-Most weapons comes with the dice already set, and for spells you should use the calculations based on caster level, I agree that's not a very intuitive aproach, but only on rare moments you gonna change those.
    6-Again its not very intuitive but you can change the "profile" of your sheet with Combat, Standart and Preparation, on Combat only the equiped weapons will show.
    8-Take a look at this extension from celestian that helps a lot with that: https://www.fantasygrounds.com/forum...oreRPG-5E-etc)
    12-I use them as copy of the same "weapon" on the action tab, but yeah, is kinda clunky.

    Problems with actual solutions:
    4-I use the quick pointer for pointing things on the map, but when I want to create a lasting effect create the pointer with the right click and choosing pointer on the radial menu, those pointers won't fade when you create a new quick pointer.

  6. #6
    I would second the recommendation to use the PFRPG-Spellbook module. In my PF campaign we’re just using the core rules so I copied the core spells from that module to my own spell module; you could do the same (yes, it took a while, but it’s a one-time effort and totally worth it to have the effects predefined) and then tweak the ones that are different between 3.5 and PF.

  7. #7
    Quote Originally Posted by Thamyor View Post
    From you list I will awnser some of those I can:
    Problems with no solution
    1-Take a look at Bmos aura effect: https://www.fantasygrounds.com/forum...l=1#post596501
    4-Most weapons comes with the dice already set, and for spells you should use the calculations based on caster level, I agree that's not a very intuitive aproach, but only on rare moments you gonna change those.
    6-Again its not very intuitive but you can change the "profile" of your sheet with Combat, Standart and Preparation, on Combat only the equiped weapons will show.
    8-Take a look at this extension from celestian that helps a lot with that: https://www.fantasygrounds.com/forum...oreRPG-5E-etc)
    12-I use them as copy of the same "weapon" on the action tab, but yeah, is kinda clunky.

    Problems with actual solutions:
    4-I use the quick pointer for pointing things on the map, but when I want to create a lasting effect create the pointer with the right click and choosing pointer on the radial menu, those pointers won't fade when you create a new quick pointer.
    The aura effect does not address my need, but it absolutely will be a nice tool for me to use for other things.

    On the other hand, the new to FGU actually addresses the problem natively which is a nice bonus.

  8. #8
    Give a stat block to a player - simple drop the token on the players picture (top-left)

  9. #9
    Quote Originally Posted by Thamyor View Post

    4-I use the quick pointer for pointing things on the map, but when I want to create a lasting effect create the pointer with the right click and choosing pointer on the radial menu, those pointers won't fade when you create a new quick pointer.
    Maybe I am after years, missing something basic. How do I create a 'quick pointer'?

  10. #10
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