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kilaak
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2019
Posts: 1

Old December 19th, 2019, 04:57 AM
Hi folks,

I've been doing some research on Realm Works and had a few questions. I've done a bit of digging for some of the answers, but figured it might be best to go to the folks who use the tool outright.

I'm a GM who is using the d20 3.5 system with a mix of some Pathfinder content. Currently I've been using OneNote has the means for managing my campaign, which is a homebrew one. Like most campaigns, it has a lot of NPCs, locations, etc etc. One of the biggest challenges I'm encountering with what I have right now is keeping track of everything.

Also, there are several layers to what happens in my sessions. There are four players physically present, and one who plays remotely via a conference call software. I also use a virtual tabletop that I put on the screen for everyone to see to manage the battles, locations of characters, etc. So whatever I can do to streamline aspects of the game would be a big help.

It seems like Realm Works would help me keep track of the world as it continues to expand while we play with the use of the links and tags and stop me from having to click through OneNote or dig through books. I know it would involve me entering in a lot of data at the start, that's no problem.

My questions are these:

- I produce content on three different machines depending on where I am. I know RW comes with some cloud storage to begin, but is it relatively easy to either sync it up via Google Drive, or to move files from place to place to keep everything up to date?

- I worry about software no longer being supported (and of course hope that doesn't happen for the developers). Would one say RW is relatively well supported with updates and the like? And if it were to stop being supported, is it in a state now where it can stand alone well enough?

-RW can integrate with HeroLab. I checked HeroLab and saw it has integration with Pathfinder. I would assume other 3.5 content would have to be entered in by me? I'm really not looking for something to run combat for me, I prefer to do that with dice and paper for nostalgia sake But would you say HeroLab is almost a must with RW simply for being able to integrate stats directly into RW easily?

I think those are all my questions. Thanks for taking the time out to read this and any insights provided.
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kbs666
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2014
Location: Chicago, IL
Posts: 1,688

Old December 23rd, 2019, 07:35 PM
1) The cloud method is the easiest way to move data between machines. To do it without the cloud involves copying the database file from machine to machine. The cloud sub is $20 a year and well worth it, IMO, for you usage.
2) RW is no longer being actively developed. there has been a bug fix since the SW went out of development. It is currently very useful.
3) HL does support 3.5. I'm not entirely sure, as I don't use it, what is and isn't in that. The PF content is as complete as anyone could hope for although getting lots of the data packages does get expensive. HL integration with RW is currently broken. I remain hopeful that will get fixed but they've known of the issue for a while and nothing has happened.

my Realm Works videos
https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCZU...4DwXXkvmBXQ9Yw
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EightBitz
Senior Member
 
Join Date: May 2013
Posts: 1,458

Old December 24th, 2019, 01:01 AM
Quote:
- I produce content on three different machines depending on where I am. I know RW comes with some cloud storage to begin, but is it relatively easy to either sync it up via Google Drive, or to move files from place to place to keep everything up to date?
Lonewolf offers its own cloud service for RW. If you use it with multiple computers, you have to remember to sync each computer with the cloud before opening the realm and after closing the realm. If you make an edit on computer #1, and do not sync, then try to open that realm on computer #2, you're going to have issues. You'll have to go back to computer #1 to sync.

Syncing with the cloud is not automatic. It's a single click to sync any given realm, or a single click to sync all realms, but you still have to click. It's not a big deal at all to do it, you just have to remember to do it.

If you don't use the cloud service, you're going to have to do manual backups, transfers and restores of the database, and that's going to be a hassle. Unlike cloud sync, this process will not protect you from accidentally reverting to an older copy of your realm. If your latest updates are on computer #1, and you accidentally transfer from computer #2 to computer #1, you've just lost your updates.

Quote:
- I worry about software no longer being supported (and of course hope that doesn't happen for the developers). Would one say RW is relatively well supported with updates and the like? And if it were to stop being supported, is it in a state now where it can stand alone well enough?
RW is no longer under active development. You can expect no feature updates. No future enhancements or improvements. It seems they're still supporting the software with bug fixes, but that's the most you can expect.

Quote:
-RW can integrate with HeroLab. I checked HeroLab and saw it has integration with Pathfinder. I would assume other 3.5 content would have to be entered in by me? I'm really not looking for something to run combat for me, I prefer to do that with dice and paper for nostalgia sake But would you say HeroLab is almost a must with RW simply for being able to integrate stats directly into RW easily?
The integration with Hero Lab is useful if you use Hero Lab. If you don't use Hero Lab, the integration will be trivial. You can simply enter your own stat blocks, as needed, for characters, NPCs and monsters.
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Farling
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Join Date: Mar 2013
Location: Greater London, UK
Posts: 2,372

Old December 24th, 2019, 06:35 AM
I guess the trick to entering monsters is to store the stat block as you normally would see it for your particular game system.

The monster topic-type has lots of individual fields, but it probably isn't worth breaking the stat block down into these fields unless you are going to be searching for maybe monsters with strength of 17 (or some similar arbitrary criteria).

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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Ualaa
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2013
Location: Vancouver, Canada.
Posts: 698

Old January 1st, 2020, 12:22 AM
Realm works used to have integration where you could have a hero lab portfolio, either the bestiary stuff or one that you had made, and click a button to add those NPCs (usually monsters to kill, but potentially hostile humans). That functionality seems to have disappeared since they offered the 64-bit version of RW.

I personally wouldn't recommend the Bestiary books, since they don't integrate (as in the RW versions). Having all the monsters within Hero Lab is very nice. Just because the active RW won't integrate with the running Hero Lab portfolio doesn't mean you cannot use both tools quite well with gaming. Or either, on it's own for that matter.

I would create the portfolio (with monsters or human/dwarf/etc bad guys) and save that. RW can have that portfolio added, if you'd like the ability to view it from within RW. You can save however you like; if it's from an adventure I save with a prefix of the page number and then the name of what is in the encounter.

I have the player characters all in one portfolio. From that, I import (from the adversary portfolio) into the player portfolio. That's all Hero Lab, no RW integration any more on that end. If there's loot, I can transfer between characters on the portfolio via "give to character".

While RW may not be actively developed at this point, there is a decent chance it may be in the future. The owner of Wolflair is fond of it, and that shows. It's just not fiscally viable at the moment, with limited resources for coding. They're concentrating on Hero Lab online (some game systems are on Hero Lab Online and some are on Hero Lab Classic [the pure desktop app]). There is a decent chance RW will get future development, but that's not a certainty.

Just on what Realm Works does, I wouldn't hesitate to purchase it again. Create anything you like, whether it is a city/region or an NPC or a monster or a house rule you'd like to reference. I like to set auto linking (Manage Names... Control Shift A (I think) with capitalization important to case sensitive linking... then make my desired links double caps like this "Double Caps").

Thereafter, when you're in another article doing something, if you were to type Double Caps, it would automatically link to the first, while double caps would not, which is very handy. You can view links, both outgoing from a topic and incoming (even if the current article doesn't link outwards to something).

It's very flexible.

I have my Path of War in Realm Works. In that system, there are multiple disciplines, each of which can only be used with certain types of weapons (3-4 weapon groups, typically), and there are twenty or so disciplines. I made an article with each discipline and which weapons they can be used with. And another, where all the disciplines are on one page, each with their weapon groups. Then if I'm interested in one, for example Riven Hourglass, I can click it and see which weapon groups work with that. Then I can click one of the those and see which other disciplines can be used by that weapon. With a little clicking (or the back button), I can find a weapon that works for a few disciplines for a character.

The current campaign I'm running has a lot of information. I'm just adding things as I encounter them, and the whole thing snowballs. There are hundreds of NPCs and a lot of organizations within the city. Districts, which have nick names and such. I can check (mark as shareable by checking a green dot) what the players have enountered and track things nicely that way. Otherwise, there would be too much to track.

TLDR - The tool is extremely useful, even if it were to never have additional updates.
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