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Basic Fantasy Player's App

Posted: Sat Mar 17, 2018 9:40 pm
by ThorinSchmidt
I'm not sure if this goes in The Workshop or not. After some thought, this seemed the best fit. However if Solomoriah or other admins feel differently, then please move me.

Anyhow, for those that don't know, I'm a former software developer turned high school software development instructor for the St. Charles County Tech School. I also run an after-school gaming club. A number of my students are enthusiastic gamers, and we have been having fun with Basic Fantasy.

So much so that some of them are writing a BF player's app with my help. Well, more of a joint effort, i guess. I find it to be fun to write some code occasionally instead of grading it...



We have a bit of working code now, and could use some feedback. I use the Agile philosophy with development, which means getting user feedback sooner rather than later, and having users that don't mind playing around with incomplete apps, and willing to comment only on the parts that are being developed. (instead of saying "this button to do XYZ doesn't do anything!" when we asked for feedback on ABC...)

So, if you would be interested in trying out the app for us, and helping it be the best it can be, while understanding that it's being written by high school students who have about 5 hours a week to devote to it, then I invite you to follow this link to join our Slack Domain: CIS-Stars. ... DhiZjYyNTA

Once your invite is accepted, you will be added to the BasicFantasy channel, for app-related chat, and the #apks channel which will allow you to directly pull the latest builds directly to your device (assuming you install Slack on your device, which is the whole point of joining, really) and test them immediately. You'll have to enable 3rd-party installs on your device, which I can talk you through if you are unsure.

A few rules though, and they will be STRICTLY enforced! This is a social media site. And as such, normally forbidden by our school district. However, being a tech school, part of what we do is use industry tools in our program. And online collaboration is just how things are done. So, the district is allowing it as long as there is NO private messaging between or to students! Even once, and I will shut the whole thing down, since having a job, and being able to eat are very important to me. public posting of feedback is fine, and encouraged, and hoped for. Just no private messages. Anything you don't want my students to see can be posted here in this thread.

Also, we are using Android Studio, so that should be a good indicator for which platform this will work on. Sorry, Applenauts, we don't have any development tools for iPhone yet!

Re: Basic Fantasy Player's App

Posted: Sat Mar 17, 2018 10:53 pm
by Solomoriah
Thorin, this is the perfect place. Carry on!

Re: Basic Fantasy Player's App

Posted: Mon Mar 19, 2018 10:41 am
by chiisu81
Thorin, any chance the code is or could be published on GitHub or similar?

Re: Basic Fantasy Player's App

Posted: Tue Mar 20, 2018 1:55 pm
by ThorinSchmidt
The code is being developed using github, yes. And while I am not opposed to you looking at the code, I will not be accepting pull requests from anyone other than my students, at least for the time being. The real purpose of this project is for them to create the solutions. I want to give them maximum time to do that.

Still, here is the link to the repo:

Re: Basic Fantasy Player's App

Posted: Tue Mar 27, 2018 5:21 pm
by ThorinSchmidt
Okay, question time. In the app, when it comes to equipment, specifically weapons and armor, do we want the app to disable certain choices? I can pretty easily see how to program the app to disable casting spells while the Magic User wears armor, but what about if someone tries to use a weapon their class doesn't allow? I'm thinking Clerics and their ban against blades, or Magic Users and their ban against complicated weapons. The easiest solution is to just write the app to allow no deviations, but that's not really in the spirit of the game.

Or is it? I guess what I'm saying is I'd like the app to go with spirit of the game, not just the ruleset.

p.s. in my own game, I use those random background charts. The Magic User wound up serving time in the military. As a result of those rolls, we thought he would have received SOME kind of weapons training, so we settled on the light crossbow, since it is the weapon easiest to learn. So, now the party has a character known to the locals as "The Crossbow Mage". SO, I have an interest in making non-standard choices available in the app, but not if it will cause problems that I don't forsee.

Re: Basic Fantasy Player's App

Posted: Thu Mar 29, 2018 4:01 pm
by chiisu81
I personally play strictly by-the-book, so I know I would want any app/utility to be strict about it. But as you said, many/most are lenient in varying ways as far as the rules go...

Re: Basic Fantasy Player's App

Posted: Fri Mar 30, 2018 12:35 pm
by Solomoriah
I feel like making the app irreversibly strict would make it unusable for too many people. No leeway for house rules, for example.

Don't try to make it impossible to be wrong, just make it easy to be right.

Re: Basic Fantasy Player's App

Posted: Sat Mar 31, 2018 1:05 pm
by Sir Daggerford
I'm going to chime in and second Solomoriah on this one. Myself, as someone who does often implement house rules of some sort into my campaign, I would get much more use out of an app that was flexible in that regard.

Re: Basic Fantasy Player's App

Posted: Thu Apr 19, 2018 9:13 pm
by forager
I always try to make my applications as flexible as possible. If for no other reason than it makes them easier to modify later.

For a simple-ish implementation you could add a "RulesValidator" which would basically warn the user that something does not follow the rules 'by the book' but allows it anyway. Add a little red star or something to indicate a rules violation. That gives you your flexibility. Then add a "strict" flag to the application which would disallow anything which does not pass your RulesValidator.

A more complex implementation would be to design the RulesValidator as an interface and then create several implementations of it (Strict, Permissive, anything-in-between). Let a user pick which validator they want to use or even roll their own and contribute it back to the repo at some point.

Re: Basic Fantasy Player's App

Posted: Sat Feb 02, 2019 3:26 pm
by ThorinSchmidt
So it's been awhile since I made an update to this. this year I am emphasizing HTML and mySQL so not a lot of work has been done. also, my recovery from last summer's successful Save vs. Death tok longer than I thought. I'm gonna put an .apk file in the github repository for people to try out if they like. the program doesn't save, and character creation is buggy. but it makes two dummy characters that at least show the idea.

I'm running into some problems with the data model though, specifically multi-classing and XP. does everyone do a straight divide on total xp between classes? like 300 xp goes 100/100/100? or would it be reasonable to allow folks to pick and choose? Like the old dual class rules?

HERE is the new link to the github repo.
the apk can be found in the "TestBuildAPK" folder.