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Software Solutions Discussions on Traveller related software.

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  #1  
Old January 9th, 2007, 06:24 PM
toddaroo toddaroo is offline
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[img]graemlins/alpha.gif[/img] My maiden post. [img]smile.gif[/img]

I've been spending the past few days reading posts in a couple of the forums that I have a particular interest in - specifically, this one and the Classic Traveller forum.

As far as this forum goes, I've read some interesting threads on GRiP, and KloOge, and openRPG, and am still trying to make a decision between them.

I registered on the GRiP forum and read quite a bit there, and from what I can gather, it seems GRiP is falling behind its competition due to a lack of developer support? Is that correct? Is GRiP development continuing currently? I am leery of spending money on a product that isn't up to its competition's standards and has no active support...

KloOge seems to me to be the best of the three I mentioned - at least opinion-wise - but then it also appears to be the most expensive.

openRPG is appealing because it is free. But poking around at the openRPG website reveals that almost all of the resource links are dead. No plugins, no graphics, no sheets... makes me leery as well.

[img]graemlins/alpha.gif[/img] I guess my biggest question, realistically, is how difficult is it to configure House Rules into GRiP, KloOge, and openRPG?

For example, I use the Classic Traveller rules set, but somewhat modified. The skills are completely re-written, and there are perks & limitations (similar to gurps advantages & disadvantages) though not gigantic gurps-esque laundry lists of them.

I've absolutely no experience with online RPGing of this kind. Back in the day I used to MUSH and MUD, but these sorts of software solutions seem completely different (and much more preferable)!

And since I have yet to locate local players for a CT game, I am seriously considering an online solution for expanding a potential player-base option.
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Old January 9th, 2007, 07:21 PM
kaladorn kaladorn is offline
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Comments:

I liked GRIP. I ran several games with it. Then the trial license ran out. We had a valid license, but we'd lost the key. We tried to get a new key sent to us, but no reply was ever obtained. Grip had some good capabilities, a good drawing tool (though it needed more templates for stuff) and a good way to integrate with Traveller once you figured out how to write formulas for stuff.

All in all, a good project, but Hunter (if I'm not mistaken, also owner of this site) is the owner of that software and lots of other stuff, and he just has no time. It's a real pity this couldn't be open sourced or farmed off to some more active development community... but as you've seen from openRPG, that isn't always the solution either.

I'm just in the process of DLing KloogeWerks. Their reponse to my query email was fast, informative, and courteous. They support floating licenses, which I think is great as I run games with different groups of players, me being the common factor. So if I buy a master license and floating client licenses, then I can invite friends from wherever to play, N (say 6?) at a time (however many licenses I buy). But you can just DL the program and try it for short periods with a demo dungeon and up to 30 minute session just to give you a feel for it. No Traveller specific demo, but you might get a feel for what it can do.

I play to use (probably) KW and Skype (to get a broadband voice comm from the players at the same time). KW seems to currently be supported and since it is a pay thing, people have a degree more incentive to be involved, a problem that plagues open source. Hunter, OTOH, is just one guy who has a lot to handle and that tends to limit his cycles on any one thing.

So, although I like GRIP, I'm moving on to alternate solutions.
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Old January 9th, 2007, 09:57 PM
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It's true GRiP is no longer being developed at present. Although you can find it discounted quite a bit or on EBay (15$) and the players mod is free, unless you can do this I would consider alternatives. But since the players mod is free you can always play in a game [img]smile.gif[/img]
If you have any questions, feel free to ask at the GRiP Forums, as I'm one of the Admins...
Traveller works quite nicely in GRiP... Check out Maladominus' Terra Incognita

Here's a list of most common Virtual Tabletops

Commercial...
Klooge
Fantasy Grounds
ScreenMonkey
Battlegrounds
GRiP

Free...
OpenRPG
RPTools
Gametable

For Free I would consider MapTool From RPTools [img]smile.gif[/img]
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Old January 10th, 2007, 12:55 PM
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I've also been tinkering with RPTools and Skype recently. The electronic version of the AHL maps fit perfectly in MapTool, and its amazingly easy to make tokens for PCs and NPCs using TokenTool. MapTool seems pitched at just the right level of complexity (very easy to use without seeming mickey-mouse) ... the biggest problem my group has had has been in not always having a clear Skype channel.

Regards PLST
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Old January 10th, 2007, 11:51 PM
toddaroo toddaroo is offline
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Thank you kaladorn, Berg, and Hemdian for your thoughts and comments.

RPTools and Skype is something I never thought of. I am going to have to take a look at that combo. Thanks Hemdian.

Thank you Berg for the comprehensive list. Much appreciated.

kaladorn, it seems you have been seeking the same sort of solution as well. Thanks for sharing your thoughts.
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Old January 11th, 2007, 12:56 AM
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Currently I use GRiP for Sheets, chat, sending files, etc and MapTool for... mapping [img]smile.gif[/img]

Player view...



GM view...



Works well [img]smile.gif[/img]
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Old January 11th, 2007, 01:23 AM
toddaroo toddaroo is offline
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Thanks for the screen captures Berg.

On the GM's view - is the chat/RP window purposefully not visible?
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Old January 11th, 2007, 01:33 AM
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Quote:
Originally posted by toddaroo:
On the GM's view - is the chat/RP window purposefully not visible?
Yes, I wanted to show the adventure editor to show it's usefulness in running games. You can see the various tabs across the top for some of the other features.
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Old January 11th, 2007, 02:09 AM
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Don't get me wrong - I liked GRIP fine. I was just disappointed when we misplaced a license key and the vendour couldn't even be bothered to reply to our email (tried multiple times).

I even spent some time learning the tricks of scripting and had scripts and an MT character sheet that had ways to autoroll combat with the character's weaponry including skills and attributes. And other skill tests were also macro driven.

I did the character's ship up in the map editor.

Overall, the tool wasn't bad, but support seems pretty sparse and future development seems dubious.

I've toyed a few times with writing my own (write networked software every day at work... eleven years now...) but then I realize I spend enough time at work with computers and should spend time with people and that puts paid to that bright idea. So now I contemplate buying the solution... [img]smile.gif[/img]

Thanks for the good discussion though, guys.
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Old January 11th, 2007, 02:32 AM
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Understandable [img]smile.gif[/img] Just when you were getting the hang of it, you can't use it anymore

One thing I would say is take your time before commiting (unless it's free or cheap ), as they all have strengths and weaknesses...

A friendly gentleman with experience in Klooge named Bruce is around here somewhere and may pop in and give the lowdown... He has made a Trav20 Klooge definition.
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