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harpy
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Join Date: Apr 2011
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Old April 20th, 2011, 04:24 PM
I was thinking of getting HL more for GM management and preparation. I was wondering about a few things:

One thing that is a chore is creating NPCs and calculating CR. Does HL do this? The key thing is whether the character has NPC or Base classes, but also the amount of gear that the NPC has on them. Are these things automated in some way?

How do the arrays work, that is the standard and elite stat arrays for NPCs? Can I just select them automatically rather than entering in the stats each time?

In terms of output, both for monsters and for NPCs, ultimately what I need is a text statblock. Then I can cut and paste it into a word document and condense the session's material into the format I like to use. I see that you can output character sheets, but that won't work for me as I want to have several different stat blocks on a single sheet of paper. Is there some kind of standard stat block output?

What would put me in heaven would be a stat block output, but also allow me to have text output of select feats/abilities/spells, etc. If I can get all of the rules for an NPC or monster I've built with HL onto a single sheet of paper then that would dramatically ease my prep time.
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Mathias
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Old April 20th, 2011, 04:53 PM
You can always download Hero Lab in demo mode from our website and take it for a test drive before you decide to purchase it - http://wolflair.com/index.php?context=hero_lab

Gear selection is not automated, but all of the NPCs from the GameMastery Guide and the NPC Guide are already entered into HL - you may be able to find one similar to the NPC you're shooting for, and start with that, so that you can leave the character's gear alone.

In the same menu where you'd choose whether a PC would get the Standard Fantasy: 15, high-fantasy: 20, etc., you can choose to use the basic or heroic NPC arrays instead. Once you've selected those, HL will tell you which of the numbers in the array you have used and which you haven't as you set the various attributes.

The statblock is available from the file menu...output active hero statblock, and is currently pretty close to Paizo's official statblock format.

I'm afraid that the statblock does not include more than a line of description for each of the abilities.
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chiefweasel
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Old April 20th, 2011, 06:18 PM
I find the real power of HL is using it while playing. If an NPC gets a condition, like syunned, i can click one button and the effects cascade through the whole character. Same for spell abilities, i can assign something like Cats Grace with 1 click. I can indicate that i am using Power attack and the effects automatically populate the character so i dont need to try to figure it out each time.

Just my opinion though

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blzbob
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Old April 20th, 2011, 10:11 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by chiefweasel View Post
I find the real power of HL is using it while playing. If an NPC gets a condition, like syunned, i can click one button and the effects cascade through the whole character. Same for spell abilities, i can assign something like Cats Grace with 1 click. I can indicate that i am using Power attack and the effects automatically populate the character so i dont need to try to figure it out each time.

Just my opinion though
With all the spells and effects that go off with the PCs in my group, I have to agree 100%. Toss Enlarge on the dwarf? No problem. Is he grappled? No problem. He lost 3 points of strength because of a failed poison save too? No problem. The druid just cast barkskin on him? Again, no problem.
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chava
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Old April 21st, 2011, 12:35 AM
On that note - an active spell list would be a nice addition. Not all spells add to a stat, so they don't need to be on the in-play tab, but having them all listed with CL for when the big-bags get hit with a dispel magic would be nice.
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chiefweasel
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Old April 21st, 2011, 06:30 AM
There is a Spell tab that will list all your current spells, along with their DC, and you can even check them off when you cast them.

If mean Spell Conditions, you can go the Adjustment tab and click on Spell Effects. then just all the effects you want and to the levels you want. This is extremely handle for NPCs. Many of the adventure paths indicate that the NPC does something before combat such as cast Shield. While the effect is already inclueded in the AC of the NPC, its nice to add the effect in manually so it can be manipulated such as with a dispel mahic or something like that.

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chava
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Old April 21st, 2011, 10:21 AM
No ~ the Spell tab is great for determining what a caster has cast, but what about the fighter who is working with the spellcaster who was buffed and drank a few potions. Those are the ones I'm always losing my little pieces of paper, the ones that say 'greater invisibility' or 'protection for arrows' or 'mirror image'.

Or if the spellcaster gets into multiple fights before regaining spell slots, as happens with hit and run tactics sometimes - then all of the spells are checked of on the Spell Tab, but very few are active.

I think I should use a .txt sheet.... I can't lose that as easily...
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Thazar
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Old April 21st, 2011, 10:28 AM
There are two (actually three) places where you can list spells. The first is where you prepare spells for your class. The second is the spell tab at the end where you check off what you have already cast.

The third is what you want. It is on the Adjustments tab at the top. You can add a TON of spells. They then have a check box for if it is active and a spot for notes to set up DC, duration, caster level, source. My fighter always has Haste, Displacement, and Fly listed there with a source of "Potion" and the caster level listed. Then when he drinks them in combat I just check the box. When they were off I unchecked them but leave it on the list for future use.
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chava
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Old April 21st, 2011, 10:34 AM
And I use all of those places, however, if the spell does not have a effect on the characters statistics - like 'protection from arrows' or 'mirror image' it doesn't exist on the 'Adjustment' Tab.

I heavily use the 'Adjustment' Tab and for effects like those you listed, or in the case of the one barbarian I have 'enlarge person', 'bull's strength' and 'bear's endurance'.

The other option for me is to add a bunch of spells to the adjustment tab that don't have a mechanical effect on the character sheet - which if I had more time I would probably do more quickly.
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Thazar
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Old April 21st, 2011, 10:42 AM
Ah. I see what you mean. I do think that is where those types of spells would go. Maybe the powers that be can add a "Generic" one to that area that has no mechanical effect but allows the user to enter text. You could add it several times for each unique spell you want to track.
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