Tuesday, November 06, 2012

[TechTuesday] The Power of Flexibility

Last week, I touched up on the RPTools.net software and how it could allow people to be introduced to basic role playing and what to expect with such things.

This week, I'll touch up on how frameworks work using this software, and how RPTools does a wonderful job of making it possible for many people to adapt the software to fit their own personal campaigns!
In any given game, the player and the game master both need to have tools that allow them to help bring about a story. In the world of computers, this can be as simple as a set of dice, a piece of paper, and notes that relate to your character.

Though when trying to give something that everyone can quickly reference in any given game in RPTools, it helps to use a Framework, which often has all the tools one needs to relate to their character sheet, the dice rolls that they use, and options to make each attack more flavorful.

Maptools, the software most people revolve their game around, acts as the core to this. In any given game, players will be a part of a Campaign of some sort, and will have an associated Campaign File. This file has a collection of statistics that each token on the map uses.

Tokens are any element(s) in the software that both players and game master uses that has properties outside of their visual element. When designating a token, the player or GM has a number of properties associated with it, including ownership, name, and any other statistic the GM/Player wishes to use.

The nice thing about this, is that using these properties, any given player will have the ability to type in commands into the chat window, or into a macro, that uses these properties to produce different actions and their related results in the chat window. By doing so, we don't necessarily have to worry about people having shady dice rolls behind the screen (though they will be at the mercy of the computer's randomness, which not many people enjoy).

Between the setting, the token properties, tokens, code, and macros, we can already begin to see the very components that we can use to put together a comfortable and enjoyable environment for people to work around. And, once we have all that figured out... we can then start to talk about frameworks.

If your interested to learn what a framework is, you can head over to the RPTools explanation on the topic. And as the weeks move on, I hope to take a step by step approach to putting together my own framework for the Valanas game setting based on the Mutants and Masterminds RPG system.

As I do start to put this together, I'll go through the process of not only the coding aspect of this but also the design process of it, and if I can manage it, put together something that not only my local group will enjoy, but many others as well!

For those out there reading, what has been your favorite Framework, if at all, that you have used with RPTools, and what made it enjoyable?

Till next time readers!