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daudvyd
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Join Date: Sep 2018
Posts: 29

Old September 22nd, 2018, 05:19 AM
Hi Folks. I'm currently keeping campaign data in a personal wiki and am considering switching to Realm Works (RW). I have a few questions and would welcome answers from people actively using the software.

(1) What format does RW use to store data? Is it human-readable such as an unencrypted sqlite database? If so, is the schema transparent with meaningful table and column names or opaque?

(2) If I create a character, JohnSmith, and then mention JohnSmith elsewhere, will the software automatically make a link to that character or will I need to manually confirm it every time?

(3) If I specify that LisaSmith is a sibling (sister) of JohnSmith, will the software automatically infer that JohnSmith is a sibling (brother) of LisaSmith? Or will I always have to manually create the link in the other direction?

(4) I'm interested in investigative stories (mysteries). Date, time, and place are often very important. Can items in the database be associated with a user-defined date, time, and place? For example, could I write that KenKiller shot JohnSmith on December 9, 2200 at 10:30pm in JohnSmith's apartment? If so, would this piece of information then be registered on the data page for Ken, John, and the apartment? Would it show up on a timeline or table of events?

(5) In my games, the PCs and NPCs often have responsibilities to each other. For example, a PC may ask an NPC to run some lab tests and then report on the results when they are finished. During game play, could I note the parties involved, the time of the request, and the estimated time of completion? Would the request show up on the data page for these characters and in the timeline? Is this complicated by there being two date/times associated with the item: request and completion.

(6) I have two groups going through the same campaign separately. They make different choices and the stories will end up very different. Could I have two separate databases of the same initial material? If I spontaneously make a NPC in one instance, could I copy that NPC to the second instance later?

(7) Can stories be game system agnostic or do I need to specify a game system?

(8) Is the marketplace working in such a way that users can create stories for other customers to buy? If so, what percentage does the seller keep and what percentage does Lone Wolf keep?
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kbs666
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Join Date: Oct 2014
Location: Chicago, IL
Posts: 1,686

Old September 22nd, 2018, 06:29 AM
1) RW uses a commercial SQL database. It is not terribly human readable. You can export any realm you create to xml which is very accessible and readable.
2) It will do automatically and that is user controllable.
3) Relationships of that sort are reflected in both directions.
4) Date and time are presently not in a good place in RW. If you are able to work in a rather clumsy Gregorian calendar then date and time work and events will show up in a timeline. As to people and places they are all topics in RW speak and once created any mention of one will result in a link being created pointing to it.
5) You could do this in RW. Again because of the messy way RW handles dates and time you might not like it. There is a date/time snippet which allows for a title and further annotation. That should be sufficient for your needs. It would just be placed on the PC/NPC's topic with the responsibility. Naming who the responsibility is to would link to that person.
6)You could easily make 2 or more copies of the same starting realm. Copying an NPC from one to the other is also possible.
7) You need not specify anything. RW could just as easily be used by an author to track his world for a book as it is used by a GM to track a game world.
8) Not yet. We are told to expect progress by the end of the month but who knows. We've been waiting a long time so take any and all promises on that front with a grain of salt. Do not anticipate the marketplace being opened to random sellers for quite some time even after it does finally go live. The plan, the last time it was discussed was that some unspecified group of community members would evaluate community submitted material to determine if it was of sufficient quality to merit inclusion in the marketplace.

my Realm Works videos
https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCZU...4DwXXkvmBXQ9Yw
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Parody
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Join Date: Jan 2013
Location: Rochester, MN
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Old September 22nd, 2018, 06:30 AM
Ninja!

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daudvyd
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Join Date: Sep 2018
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Old September 22nd, 2018, 07:20 AM
kbs666, thank you for that detailed response, most of which is actually good news. Three quick follow-up questions:

1) Can RW import from the same XML format it uses to export? If not, what does it use for import?

4) Would I have to physically click on the calendar or could I just enter date and time something like 2018-09-22:18:22:00 and have it be properly interpreted?

*) If I am primarily interested in tracking character relationships, info that is hidden and revealed, and an event timeline--is RW my best option?
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Parody
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Old September 22nd, 2018, 07:25 AM
1. Yes. (You have to do this to create a Realm based on another Realm, for example.)
4. You can't type into them at present, you have to use the GUI.
*. Info is good, relationships are OK, the timeline isn't that great.

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kbs666
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Join Date: Oct 2014
Location: Chicago, IL
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Old September 22nd, 2018, 07:42 AM
Entering dates is really hard. That makes creating timelines a real pain. Because the custom calendar feature has been on hold for so long there have been no work done on that whole area of RW so timelines have very limited functionality. IIRC even unrevealed dates/times show up in the timeline.

my Realm Works videos
https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCZU...4DwXXkvmBXQ9Yw
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daudvyd
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Join Date: Sep 2018
Posts: 29

Old September 22nd, 2018, 11:16 AM
kbs666 and Parody, thank you so much for these detailed answers. I'm really concerned about the calendar and timeline functionality.

1) does the calendar include time or is day the finest level of detail?

2) while possibly more tedious, could date and time be added to the exported XML and then reloaded?

3) can users create arbitrary tables or views of items? If so, could tags or user-defined fields be used to enter year, month, day, time as integers and then sort across them to order them appropriately? That way, one might be able to avoid the built in calendar altogether.
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kbs666
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Join Date: Oct 2014
Location: Chicago, IL
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Old September 22nd, 2018, 11:39 AM
1) Time can be added. That part is pretty easy.
2) time and date are an automatic part of the export. The export/import process can be every part of the realm or very finely grained.
3) Views are a thing. You can create your own user defined date system but it has to be done manually every time you enter a date. It isn't something that works automatically.

my Realm Works videos
https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCZU...4DwXXkvmBXQ9Yw
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Farling
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Join Date: Mar 2013
Location: Greater London, UK
Posts: 2,369

Old September 22nd, 2018, 01:39 PM
On point (6) I would say that sharing an NPC between two realms isn't a trivial activity. As long as you have a "base" realm that contains the core information, then sharing data from that "base" realm into two "live" realms is possible. But it isn't easy to share back from the "live" realms into the "base" realm, or easily between the two "live" realms. (Sharing between realms is best thought of as one-way.)

Farling

Author of the Realm Works Import (http://forums.wolflair.com/showthread.php?t=58156) and Output tools (http://forums.wolflair.com/showthread.php?t=59981)
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kbs666
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Old September 22nd, 2018, 03:24 PM
Exporting a single topic is very easy. With scan for new links it will make all of its outbound links without a problem in the new realm. The issues I've seen with this sort of thing is in trying to import updated topics into an existing realm.

my Realm Works videos
https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCZU...4DwXXkvmBXQ9Yw
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