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Offline grimjester  
#1 Posted : Sunday, January 29, 2012 6:48:00 AM(UTC)

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Joined: 4/24/2014(UTC)
Posts: 29

During the last game, we discussed the layout of the character sheet.

I have a few suggestions:

First, the greatest asset of Elthos is user creativity, the ultimate version would allow users to drag and drop fields where they want on the sheet, or multiple sheets.

Second, since this first option is a dream feature, the abbreviations at the top need to go. Instead, they should be printed on an alternate key sheet. That room could be used for something else, and since Elthos does calculations for you, that section is only for people who like looking at formulas and double checking the software.

Third, Life points and Mystic points should be in a totally isolated section since they change during play. There should also be a max life/mystic section and a current life/mystic section.

Fourth, although having everything fit on one sheet has a lot of appeal, a character with 3 spells will most likely need two anyway. Expand it to two sheets, and have space in the equipment area for added equipment since that section, like life/mystic points, is subject to change as well.

These are my thoughts. It's like you're reading my mind!
Offline vbwyrde  
#2 Posted : Sunday, January 29, 2012 11:59:00 AM(UTC)

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Joined: 4/18/2014(UTC)
Posts: 321
United States

My powers of telepathy have improved it seems. Thank you.

Ok, I think you're on to something, and these changes would not be too difficult to implement.

What I'm thinking is that those elements that are the most common to want to check should be the most easily found. At the moment I still find myself kind of scrolling around with my eye to locate Mystic Points and Life Points. The other thing I most often want to check is Attack Level and Armor Class. However, now that I've added the Total Attack Level per weapon you usually will want to look there instead of at the Attack Level. In fact it raises the question whether or not I should even have Attack Level and Armor Class printed separately because they both now appear in two locations, and that's unnecessary and potentially confusing. My original thought was "this is the 'base attack level' and this is the 'total attack level'... but in reality I'm not really seeing a need for the 'base attack level (the one in the left side column). The same would be true for Armor Class which accumulates in the Total Armor Class line. So I could remove AL and AC. This leaves Mystic Attack Level and Mystic Armor Class. Again, however, the Mystic Attack Level changes per Power, and is shown next to the power along with the cost to invoke it in MP. So... there may not be a need for the MAL. That leaves the Mystic Armor Class, which is then kind of left hanging out there on it's own. But since that one tends to be static, I can see a justification for leaving it.

The other consideration you bring up, which is good, is the idea of leaving enough space for items that change, such as Current Life Points and Mystic Points, Iron, Equipment, etc. I'll have to think about that. Right now I have it in mind that this kind of information should be recorded on the group's Events Tracker Sheet so that the GM at the end of the game can go in and update the Application reasonably easily. This should include equipment purchases etc. So if that is the case, then maybe it is not necessary to include space on the characters sheets specifically. Remember, it's very easy to reprint the sheets if things change. And current Life Points and Mystic Points are things that can be recorded on the Group Melee Tracker sheet (which I have not used actually for a few games but should be used, and will do so next time).

As for the first suggestion, that's good. I can put the formula information on the first sheet that prints, or I can just leave it out all together. As you say, that is really only there to help with the debugging of the application so that players can confirm that the calcs are done properly for their characters.

On the other hand, once I leave that off there is plenty of page space for the characters - including spell descriptions. So maybe I can simply add a few blank lines for Equipment anyway. For Life Points and Mystic points maybe I can leave a blank underscore line for LP and MP so the player can put in what they were at at the end of the last game.

One more thought - If I jimmy up the website a little bit more I can make it easier for the GM to add Event information as the game progresses, including combat stats. I would like to do that because the current method of writing things down on paper and then transcribing is ok, but not as efficient as it could be. Some information does get lost, and going back and writing stuff into the website later takes extra time that may not be necessary. However, making those kinds of changes may take me some serious thought/time to program, so I would not expect those kinds of changes immediately. I'll work on it, but I'm thinking I'll run into design conundrums as I do. So things might be a little choppy for a few sessions while I work all that out.

Anyway, thank you kindly for your thoughts! This is really great, and I do appreciate your using the forum for this. It's very helpful, and will give future readers an idea of what the thought process was that went into various design decisions. So keep em coming!
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