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Ualaa
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Old February 2nd, 2020, 01:56 PM
I don't have the data on which system has how many users.
I suspect either Pathfinder or DnD 5e have the most.

5e just has the SRD, so it's not a source of income really.

I'd like them to add Pathfinder to HLO, and to charge enough that it is a revenue stream, not merely paying for the server.
Since there isn't new content to sell us, make the Campaign Theater strong enough (both for the PF crowd and those who choose newer systems like PF2, 5e, Starfinder, etc) that we'll pay to have it's features.
Then the masses of existing Hero Lab Classic users can help put Lone Wolf into a better financial position.

I'm not sure on the numbers, or if that's even a viable approach.
I'd hope that it is.
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Toblakai
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Old February 2nd, 2020, 02:02 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by Farling View Post
With the amount of material to convert from HLC to HLO, it would be sensible for them to implement a converter that reads the XML files and generates the data and scripts in whatever language they are now using.

Doing the conversion manually would get individual small parts available more quickly, but in the long run it would likely take longer to convert everything manually.

(I've seen both approaches taken in my 32 years of programming - and cringed when people chose the manual approach.)
I am sure it would be a mix of both, the purely data driven stuff I am sure would be automated. But it sounds like there is other stuff that will need new code.

The problem is, as much as I want PF1 for HLO, all the groups I play in use so many of the books and flimsies (sp?) that I couldn't use it until pretty much everything had been implemented.
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Raistlindantilus
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Old February 3rd, 2020, 03:18 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ualaa View Post
I don't have the data on which system has how many users.
I suspect either Pathfinder or DnD 5e have the most.

5e just has the SRD, so it's not a source of income really.

I'd like them to add Pathfinder to HLO, and to charge enough that it is a revenue stream, not merely paying for the server.
Since there isn't new content to sell us, make the Campaign Theater strong enough (both for the PF crowd and those who choose newer systems like PF2, 5e, Starfinder, etc) that we'll pay to have it's features.
Then the masses of existing Hero Lab Classic users can help put Lone Wolf into a better financial position.

I'm not sure on the numbers, or if that's even a viable approach.
I'd hope that it is.
I finally set aside some time to dig into HLO and CT and I have to say I was wrong to say this project was a waste of time. It's a valuable project that I'm very excited about.

I'm so excited about it that I "obtained" a PF2e CRB and tried to give it an honest chance.

It's a mess and I hate it.

Please LWD, bring Pathfinder to HLO. Don't let Paizo's terrible second edition be your focus.
Raistlindantilus is offline   #23 Reply With Quote
Joe
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Old February 4th, 2020, 06:26 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by Farling View Post
With the amount of material to convert from HLC to HLO, it would be sensible for them to implement a converter that reads the XML files and generates the data and scripts in whatever language they are now using.

Doing the conversion manually would get individual small parts available more quickly, but in the long run it would likely take longer to convert everything manually.

(I've seen both approaches taken in my 32 years of programming - and cringed when people chose the manual approach.)
Quote:
Originally Posted by Toblakai View Post
I am sure it would be a mix of both, the purely data driven stuff I am sure would be automated. But it sounds like there is other stuff that will need new code.
The technical problem isn't a language one, the datafiles are still XML + scripting. So while there will undoubtedly be parts of the pure data we can convert in an automated way, there are fundamental differences to the way the data files and engine need to operate in a server environment, for performance and stability reasons. The problem is one of architecture, so it's much harder (and in many cases impossible) to automate a conversion for those parts.
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thaX
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Old February 5th, 2020, 05:26 PM
I kinda figured it was something like that, Joe. Instead of having Feats and class abilities be stacked like they were in HLC, they need the tree/chosen field to click into the HLO database.
Not a programmer, just looking at the differences between the two in how they interface between program and App browser clicks.
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Joe
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Old February 6th, 2020, 10:36 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by thaX View Post
Instead of having Feats and class abilities be stacked like they were in HLC, they need the tree/chosen field to click into the HLO database.
Not a programmer, just looking at the differences between the two in how they interface between program and App browser clicks.
I'm not sure I understand what you're asking here. It SOUNDS like you're requesting that we make the presentation of Feat choices more of an RPG video game-like "skill tree", and less of the linear list it is right now. We've discussed doing something like that internally multiple times, but the TLDR is "it's complicated." We still want to improve the overall way you make selections for your character, including making prereqs and feat chains easier to navigate (in fact, we'll be rolling out some small quality-of-life improvements to the "Choose Form" in the near future, with more improvements to come later.) But unfortunately it's not as easy as just using a tree.

The problem is that the typical video game RPG skill tree is typically fundamentally designed to be displayed entirely in 2 dimensions. Also, the progression is typically fairly straightforward: you must select the nodes early in the tree to get to nodes adjacent in the tree. Occasionally there are deviations, but they usually apply to the whole tree in a uniform way (e.g. choose X tier 1 perks to unlock tier 2, choose Y tier 2 perks to unlock tier 3, etc). Tabletop RPGs typically throw that kind of consistency and ease of presentation out the window because of the medium (print books) and the publishing model (game mechanics spread across many books and game designers, evolving over time).

Feat/ability/etc (I'll just use Feat as a stand-in for all kinds of different abilities) prerequisites get messy. Some feats have a choice from among multiple prereqs, and this can happen at multiple levels in the chain, effectively creating multiple parallel trees that ALSO interlink with one another. Sometimes prereqs are of a different kind altogether (e.g. take feat X first, OR have 20+ STR). A great many feats have no prereqs at all, or have extremely short "trees" (only A linked to B, with no branches), meaning the presentation has to scale in a useful way from trivial trees to complex ones. This is all just scratching the surface, as it all gets way more complicated given that any given user could have any subset set of books, and the tree needs to be dynamically built/pruned at a moment's notice when they make purchases or switch off certain content for a character.

All of these are surmountable problems, but they are not easy. That said, we know that our current system is lacking, and definitely has room for improvement before we hit this particular wall. Now that Campaign Theater is in beta, keep an eye out for us circling back to some of these older, more foundational systems in HLO to give them some love.
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thaX
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Old February 7th, 2020, 06:51 AM
Just postulating about the differences between the two products (HLC and HLO) and the difficulty in getting the data from one to the other.

I think the structure in HLC might not transfer well to the new App. That is my impression of your answer above my comment.
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dacoobob
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Old February 7th, 2020, 08:39 AM
Joe,

It's a thorny problem for sure. Rather than a graphical "tree", personally I'd be happy with the current list form, but with some expanded functionality within the descriptions themselves. For example, having a clickable link to prereq abilities instead of just listing them in plain text, listing prereqs to the prereqs in some sort of indented or nested form, and maybe even listing any abilities the current one is a prereq for.

Just spitballing
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Roadie
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Old February 7th, 2020, 12:46 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by dacoobob View Post
Joe,
and maybe even listing any abilities the current one is a prereq for
I think this could replace many of the use cases lost with the removal of full-text search could be easily replaced with. For example, feat descriptions having a list of "descendant" feats (Power Attack listing Furious Focus) and spells having a list of other spells that reference them (animal form listing wild shape).

For clickable links, simple functionality here could probably be to have the link set the search filter on the current view, or to have some kind of embed/popover of the text description if it's not applicable to the current view (like animal form and wild shape, since the latter is a focus spell).

Last edited by Roadie; February 7th, 2020 at 12:49 PM.
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