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Cyrael
06-27-2011, 12:08 PM
So, coming off my first successful Android + iOS app creation and implementation I found myself penciling out some features that I would really like to see in an app for tabletop roleplaying.

While I have my own ideas and features that I would like, I'd love to hear what you would think would really make a great application for your games.

Some ideas to get started

- I would love to be able as a GM to push messages, maps or rewards (xp, money, items) to my players automatically with a few simple interactions with the application.

- Be able to access all of my notes, characters, etc from anywhere I can get wifi/3G access my mobile device, and have it sync up with all other players in my 'group'.

- Group my characters or other game assets into different directories within the application. This can be done either by a campaign, system, or some other method of organization.

So anyone else have any ideas or wish lists? Anyone currently using any applications at their table?

Now, I am in no way stating that I am going to build an application, but am just curious at this point what people want or are currently using. However - if this sounds interesting to you and you have some development experience this might be a fun side project to work on.

pence
06-27-2011, 12:38 PM
Currently, I use Epic Words to run ongoing tabletop games because it has a loot/xp tracker, and it got its hooks into me before Obsidian Portal developed anything like that. If either of those sites have an API you can plug into, that would be most excellent.

At the table, I like to have monster stat blocks handy. Something that can pull from the d20 SRD or DDI is helpful. I've tried running a character off of my phone through iPlay4e and I didn't like it, because it seemed claustrophobic and slow.

My current solution involves making tokens in maptool (even for my in-person group) and running the game entirely from my laptop. If I need to look at a monster's stats, I just click on the token and they're in front of me. I can also use maptool to crop out maps from modules, write notes on them, and drag the monster tokens into different rooms. If I forget what, exactly, is in a room, I can alt-tab to the PDF and search for it. If I need to reference the SRD or DDI, I can alt-tab and query it. I ran one unique NPC, six different monsters, and gave out nearly a dozen pieces of loot this Saturday's Pathfinder game and never cracked a book. I also like the laptop because it means I don't have to use a screen - I've never been a fan of the GM fortress.

kaisel
06-27-2011, 01:01 PM
I end up using a laptop for the most part when I run games, just because a lot of my resources are online or PDFs. Tools that I'd want really depend on the game system though. I prefer to have apps actually be offline though, mainly because I don't always have internet where I'm at (also, database writes can be tedious).

What I mainly use write now is power2ool, which lets you arrange cards from 4e, and write sticky notes and the like for your game, and has hooks into DDI. Pretty handy, but again, wish there was an offline version.

For 4e specifically:
-Having a nice character sheet app, either PC or mobile is something I've heard a lot about. WoTC's character builder outputs XML (which I find is written ghastly, but I don't know whether that's because most of the XML I've used is simple, or if it really is bad). Something where you can update the sheet, and arrange it how you want, along with adding house rules-y sort of things.

-Being able to group monster stat blocks into encounters would be great.

System-agnostic:
-Character builder. I've thought about writing a Pathfinder one, just to see how it would work, but the issue with Pathfinder at least is being able to scrape all the data. Other games have this problem as well for the most part.

-General information look up, like stat blocks, items, though this mostly works for things with online compendiums.

-Something to be able to quickly jot down formatted notes. Like for 4e, it would be nice to be able to write a power card simply, with something like Pathfinder, maybe writing down something in spell format.

Lucas
06-27-2011, 01:28 PM
I like Obsidian Portal for the most part, but one thing I really wish it had is the ability to restrict the ability to see/edit something to just certain people (mostly seeing); the only options it has right now are to have a page be GM-only or open to anyone. Most of the time that's fine, but something's needed for cases where a player's working on a new character with the GM that they don't want everyone to know about yet, or other things along those same lines.

pence
06-27-2011, 01:34 PM
Epic Words can do that. Just sayin'!

You can also set read and write separately, on an individual (Bob and Alice can edit this) or group (players can view this, the public can view this) basis.

Cyrael
06-27-2011, 01:35 PM
I use Obsidian Portal as a player, but not as a GM. Is there a fee associated with some of those features, or is it all free?

Same with Epic Words. Limited free functionality? Only pay to play?

pence
06-27-2011, 01:38 PM
Epic Words lets you use most of its for free, but you can only have one campaign, and three characters.

$12 gets you a year of service, lets you store 10 campaigns, 15 characters, do secure dice-rolls and 1GB of storage. A paid GM can share that storage with players in their campaign.

Lucas
06-27-2011, 03:20 PM
Epic Words lets you use most of its for free, but you can only have one campaign, and three characters.

Within a few months of joining OP I had two campaigns up at least a dozen characters spread across several campaigns (far more than that now, although I did recently collapse a lot of penny-ante NPCs in one campaign into one page). Your little Epic Words sounds puny.

pence
06-27-2011, 03:36 PM
Within a few months of joining OP I had two campaigns up at least a dozen characters spread across several campaigns (far more than that now, although I did recently collapse a lot of penny-ante NPCs in one campaign into one page). Your little Epic Words sounds puny.

Well, the $12 subscription gets you 10 campaigns and 15 characters. The $40 Obsidian Portal subscription is unlimited campaigns, and I forget how they handle characters. Epic Words struck me as more player-focused, and Obsidian Portal as more GM-focused. What really sold me was the loot/xp tracking on Epic Words:

http://epicwords.com/campaigns/loots/1500
http://epicwords.com/campaigns/experience/1500

It's really a matter of which one you're already using - transferring everything over is not worth the pain. The nice part is that both sites will let you use most of their features for free.

Mightyblue
06-27-2011, 08:25 PM
There's iplay4e (http://iplay4e.appspot.com/characters) for running 4e character sheets, and they've got some combat app for 4e combat in development also even if I couldn't make heads or tails of it.

sraymonds
06-27-2011, 09:48 PM
Scion games don't really have the whole loot thing, but if you want to take a look at our Scion game via Obsidian Portal, have at it. (http://www.obsidianportal.com/campaigns/scion-taking-it-to-the-titans)