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Cgeist7

Cradle of Heroes (character creator app)

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Hi all,

A quick update here that a bunch of new stuff has gone live.

  • Random hero creation (one button click with choices for homeland, occupation, cult and power level)
  • Random faction / hero band creation - create your very own army of Bandits with one button click!
  • Added statblocks - text summaries of characters with just the basics to speed your game along
  • Lots of small tweaks to pages and menus.

Here's a video that shows the state of the app and some of the new features.

Cheers!

C

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Here is a statblock from a randomly created character:


** Berventkos the Lead **

Runes: Death Truth Moon 
Homeland: Old Tarsh, Occupation: Thief, Initiate of Cult: Humakt

STR: 18, CON: 11, SIZ: 15, DEX: 10, INT: 12, POW: 17, CHA: 12, 

Derived Stats: Magic Points: 17, Damage Bonus: +1D6, Hit Points: 13, Movement- Ground: 8, 

HP: -1 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 

Passions: Loyalty (Shaker Temple) 60%, Love (Family) 70%, Loyalty (Clan) 60%, Devotion (Humakt) 60%, 

Cults: Humakt - Initiate - Rune Points: 3

Runes: Air 60%, Moon 80%, Earth 10%, Darkness 40%, Death 85%, Truth 85%, 

Skills: Sleight 100%, Climb 85%, Spirit Combat 55%, Speak (Tarshite) 55%, Battle Axe 50%, Worship (Humakt) 45%, Jump 40%, Fast Talk 40%, Pole Lasso 40%, Medium Shield 40%, Disguise 40%, Dagger 35%, Fist 35%, Large Shield 35%

Spirit Magic: Vigor (2pts), Repair (2pts), Strength (2pts), Demoralize (2pts), Coordination (1pts), Detect Enemies (1pts)

Rune Spells: Shield (1pts), Sword Trance (1pts), Morale (2pts)

Attacks:
1H Battle Axe 50% 1D8+2+1D6 SR 7 8/8 HP 
Medium Shield 40% 1D4+1D6 SR 7 12/12 HP 
Light Crossbow 35% 2D4+2 SR 3 6/6 HP Rng 100

Hit Locations:
(19-20) - Head Armor: 2  5/5 HP
(16-18) - L Arm Armor: 2  4/4 HP
(13-15) - R Arm Armor: 2  4/4 HP
(12) - Chest Armor: 2  6/6 HP
(9-11) - Abdomen Armor: 2  5/5 HP
(5-8) - L Leg Armor: 2  5/5 HP
(1-4) - R Leg Armor: 2  5/5 HP

Equipment:
Lock picks, Jimmy, Other appropriate tools, Light one-handed weapon, Mask, 20m rope w/ grapple, Sack, Hooded Lantern, 30 L in coin, Secret thieves mark, 

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Idea/query that came to mind in light of @MOB's Jonstown Compendium announcement: how does a character on Cradle of Heroes interact between multiple accounts?

For example, Joe creates a character "Billy the Stabber" and posts it as open content. Later, Mandy takes up Billy the Stabber as her adventurer in a campaign. Is she able to add Billy to her roster, and thereafter edit her closed content copy of Billy as she adventures and gains experience?

The broader context being if an adventure in the Compendium were to offer pregens and link to your utility.

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I think that would be fantastic. Maybe Chaosium woud be reluctant to tie themselves in to a fan tool that could disappear though. Gloranthan web link lists can be a really bleak wasteland sometimes.

What would it take to make CoH and all its publicly available data robust against unexpected circumstances?

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I would love to see a simple interchange format for characters/stats that could be used by multiple tools. It wouldn't be hard at all - just whip up a schema for JSON or something. 

I would be willing to do coding or other work for this. 

 

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59 minutes ago, davecake said:

I would love to see a simple interchange format for characters/stats that could be used by multiple tools. It wouldn't be hard at all - just whip up a schema for JSON or something. 

I would be willing to do coding or other work for this.

The hard part is making sure that everything is covered, and mandatory/optional elements are "correctly" set.

And even then, most tools are going to have behind-the-scenes data or custom extensions that the interchange does not cover. For example, my spreadsheet has checkboxes for the four Spirit Magic enhancement spells, which figure in the results and displays an alternate set of skill values alongside the base values, as well as a column for temporary characteristic bonuses from things like Charisma or Bear's Strength. It also tracks the skill bonuses from race, culture, cult, and elective choices with another column for experience. I don't know whether CoH does this or not.

So yes, an interchange format would be nice, sorry to get all negative about the problems that it does not solve!

Edited by PhilHibbs
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1 hour ago, davecake said:

I would love to see a simple interchange format for characters/stats that could be used by multiple tools. It wouldn't be hard at all - just whip up a schema for JSON or something. 

I would be willing to do coding or other work for this. 

 

I agree and was thinking the same thing. There is a full character API as part of the cradle. 

RQiG characters are pretty complicated, so the JSON gets large-ish. I'd love to get some help or contribute to a standard.

Here's an API link to what is currently carried. We could probably trim it down a lot. 

https://www.cradleofheroes.net/api/character/7476

 

  r.HandleFunc("/api/character", GetCharacterModels).Methods("GET")
  r.HandleFunc("/api/character/user/{id}", GetUserCharacterModels).Methods("GET")
  r.HandleFunc("/api/character/{id}", GetCharacterModel).Methods("GET")
  r.HandleFunc("/api/character/{id}", CreateCharacterModel).Methods("POST")
  r.HandleFunc("/api/character/{id}", DeleteCharacterModel).Methods("DELETE")
  r.HandleFunc("/api/character/{id}", UpdateCharacterModel).Methods("PUT")
 

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2 hours ago, Crel said:

Idea/query that came to mind in light of @MOB's Jonstown Compendium announcement: how does a character on Cradle of Heroes interact between multiple accounts?

For example, Joe creates a character "Billy the Stabber" and posts it as open content. Later, Mandy takes up Billy the Stabber as her adventurer in a campaign. Is she able to add Billy to her roster, and thereafter edit her closed content copy of Billy as she adventures and gains experience?

The broader context being if an adventure in the Compendium were to offer pregens and link to your utility.

Hi @Crel - the latter. When a character is duplicated, the new author has full rights to change and manage like any of their other characters. 

This is part of my planning for factions, too, but as it has mostly temporary data (what happened in an encounter), it hasn't been top of my work list. 

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1 hour ago, PhilHibbs said:

I think that would be fantastic. Maybe Chaosium woud be reluctant to tie themselves in to a fan tool that could disappear though. Gloranthan web link lists can be a really bleak wasteland sometimes.

What would it take to make CoH and all its publicly available data robust against unexpected circumstances?

Hey @PhilHibbs,

Beyond the development work that's already been done (a lot), CoH is running on $7/month USD cloud servers. I dont have any plan to stop working on it but my focus does depend on the game I'm running / playing in.

I'd be happy to talk to Chaosium and/or the community about how to make it more stable and supported. An easy way to do this would be to transfer ownership of the cloud hosting or cover the costs.

All database content belongs to the users, so the open content could be posted/hosted anywhere. 

All that to say, there are lots of options and I'm happy to see what I can do to support the game and community. 

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53 minutes ago, PhilHibbs said:

The hard part is making sure that everything is covered, and mandatory/optional elements are "correctly" set.

And even then, most tools are going to have behind-the-scenes data or custom extensions that the interchange does not cover. For example, my spreadsheet has checkboxes for the four Spirit Magic enhancement spells, which figure in the results and displays an alternate set of skill values alongside the base values, as well as a column for temporary characteristic bonuses from things like Charisma or Bear's Strength. It also tracks the skill bonuses from race, culture, cult, and elective choices with another column for experience. I don't know whether CoH does this or not.

So yes, an interchange format would be nice, sorry to get all negative about the problems that it does not solve!

No worries at all @PhilHibbs - I love the spreadsheet!

Check out the API above for all the info that's part of a character. Basically, everything from the homeland, occupation and cult are all carried along.

I love the activate magic selector idea - but would probably need some help from a front-end developer to get that up and running properly. 

Edited by Cgeist7

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1 hour ago, Cgeist7 said:

Check out the API above for all the info that's part of a character. Basically, everything from the homeland, occupation and cult are all carried along.

Interesting stuff. Over 5.5k lines of JSON, wow! I see it does contain the character creation component values of the skills, along with what looks like an array of changes.

Warning: techie stuff follows.

An interchange format would have to be much, much simpler, and we'd have to accept that exchanging chararacters between tools would lose many of the finer details. It would be imposisble for two very different tools to implement each others' behaviour sufficiently accurately if the interchange format covered all the fiddly details of how the character got to the final destination. Maybe we could define a minimal set, consisting of "base, culture, occupation, cult, choice, other, final". CoH would have to just add up all the other modifiers that it keeps and export them as "other", and when importing, decide which of its elements to put the "other" in. Some simple tools might just export "final", so we'd each have to figure out what to do with that.

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1 hour ago, PhilHibbs said:

An interchange format would have to be much, much simpler, and we'd have to accept that exchanging chararacters between tools would lose many of the finer details.

Yeah - there’s a lot of stuff that could come out. I had an idea about “reverting” character choice decisions, like saying: “I don’t want to be a Bandit anymore, I’d like to see this character as a Noble” - so I kept the full background elements as part of the character. Dropping those would simplify things a lot as would standardizing some of the skill logic. Pretty sure I could get it down to a slim 1000 lines. :)

So - should we set up a zoom call or something with @davecake?

Edited by Cgeist7

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23 minutes ago, Cgeist7 said:

Yeah - there’s a lot of stuff that could come out. I had an idea about “reverting” character choice decisions, like saying: “I don’t want to be a Bandit anymore, I’d like to see this character as a Noble” - so I kept the full background elements as part of the character. Dropping those would simplify things a lot as would standardizing some of the skill logic. Pretty sure I could get it down to a slim 1000 lines.

There is a huge amount of value to be gained just from taking 'finished' characters from one system in to another. Take the output of Cradle of Heroes and put it straight into an online play tool, or a formatting tool that puts it straight into the format for a Jonstown Compendium product or other tool, or a simple character tracker app on an iPad. And to be able to do that whether it is a carefully crafted character from Cradle of Heroes, or a whole party of monsters from something similar to the magnificent Mythras Encounter Generator. 

A (strict) superset of that that allows you to potentially move half completed characters from one character creator to another is going to be tricky to do in a portable way, but as long as you can do it as a strict superset you can deal with it later in the process, after a first pass. 

26 minutes ago, Cgeist7 said:

So - should we set up a zoom call or something with @davecake?

Be happy to, though almost everyone finds my time zone (UTC +8, Western Austalia) pretty awkward. 

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I pushed another update tonight with a bunch of back-end work and adding pagination to the main character roster.

This drops the page load size from 750kb to around 160kb. The one area this breaks is the live search (it now only searches the 66 characters that have been loaded).

The next step is to build a full text search of all characters. If this works well, I'll then add pagination to the other rosters (random heroes & crafted heroes).

One quick note as it might not be obvious: characters are random until they've been edited in some way by their owner. They then become crafted. This is for any change. Add an image, change a skill level, add a weapon and they are crafted.

Cheers!

C

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Hi folks,

Another fairly big update: full text search is now live on Cradle of Heroes and is available from the top navigation bar.

Search covers all characters in the following in descending order:

  • Name
  • Description
  • Author's name
  • Homeland
  • Occupation
  • Cult

If there's a desire, it is easy to add other fields and weigh them appropriately. I was thinking the ability to search by runes might be handy.

With this in place, I'll remove the instant search over the next few days. As there are now almost a thousand characters on the app, search and pagination should provide folks with all the characters they need.

Right now, search only covers open characters, but I'll update it to work from your personal rosters as well. Example below.

Cheers!

C

searchpic.png

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Hi folks,

Another small series of updates is live:

  • Improvements to search
  • Pagination across random heroes, user heroes and crafted heroes
  • Added cultural names for lunar tarsh, grazelands and balazaring homelands - roots taken from the amazing Back to Balazar tool.
  • Fixes to personal skills for heroic scale random characters (they weren't generating properly)
  • Ability to see other user's open heroes (link from their name on hero cards)
  • Fixes to faction & encounter views
  • Other small fixes and UI tweaks.

Cheers & enjoy,

C

Edited by Cgeist7
More updates

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A few more updates just went live:

  • Removed the 3(!) different search functions and replaced them with the standard text search
  • Set the search function as primary on all index pages (lists of heroes)
  • Added links to open user rosters from all index pages - so anyone can click on a user's name and see all of their open characters
  • Auto-add author name to search from an open user roster page or personal user roster page
  • Fixes to pagination everywhere
  • Lots of back-end changes and optimizations - smaller page sizes and faster page loads

Nothing super sexy here, but should make the overall experience much better when people are looking for useful content.

I also used the app to prepare the Cinsina leadership NPCs (Ivartha the Skinner, Vastyr Blood-Shirt, Leikorl the Shadow and Ostling Spotted-Fur) for my game and it went really well.

I used the random character generation for Epic (for Ivartha) and Heroic (for the rest) characters and then edited them, adding and tweaking magic and skills as needed. Honestly it probably cut character creation time down to 3-4 minutes per character, which is awesome.

Cheers!

C

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Hi folks,

I realized most people couldn't use the text export without adjusting their browser settings, so I updated the app to go to a separate page where folks can copy full character exports or summary statblocks. You can get to this view by clicking the "Text" button on a character.

E.g., : Ostling Spotted-Fur

Images below.

Cheers!

C

statblock.png

summary.png

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Another update: Character notes

A few players asked for the ability to add game notes and history to characters. You can reach them from the "Notes" button from view characters. You can add and edit notes from your own characters and view any notes on open characters. 

Notes are in full markdown and are organized by the game calendar, with most recent events first. 

Cheers!

C

Edited by Cgeist7

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