Fillable and / or autocalculating character sheets


Pathfinder Second Edition General Discussion


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Pathfinder Pathfinder Accessories Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber

Links first:
- Black and white manual fill only - no calculation (v1.0)
- Black and white with calculation (v1.2)
- Color manual fill only - no calculation (v1.0)
- Color with calculation (v1.2)

I'm creating a new thread for this rather than having it buried close to 200 posts deep in the main character sheet announcement thread.

Quoted below is a post I made in the character sheet thread. I ended up going ahead and making the "manual fill only" version for anyone who hates automatic calculation. I also ended up updating the calculation sheets one more time to fix a bug in calculation order that made Arcana work only intermittently (thanks MaxAstro for pointing out it wasn't working).

The text/images on the sheets themselves are unchanged; it's just the form fields that are added.

Quote:

I wasn't super pleased with the fillable version that was floating around; some little things were bugging me like some unaligned/sloppy field placement, borders left on some checkboxes, etc.

I created fully-fillable versions of the original sheets with automatic calculations for basically anything with a proficiency (AC, weapons, saves, perception, skills, class DC, spells), Maximum HP, and bulk capacity. Proficiencies use the little TEML boxes for calculations, so checking them on the sheet is actually relevant.

Because I hate automated sheets that make it impossible to use fillable fields that don't change much (if ever) and or print default numbers in the fields you might want to manually fill out because they change - say, if you're only printing a new sheet every few levels and are otherwise filling in numbers by hand with a pencil...most of the automation gets disabled if you leave certain fields blank. Level is required for anything with proficiencies, for instance. If you leave the ability scores blank, nothing dependent on them will calculate. Checkboxes are there to disable calculation of bulk or HP, but there are also fairly easy ways to adjust the calculations if you have a feat or something that would affect them.

There are some other weird considerations, like it's possible to override the options in drop-down boxes for things. Level (in case you want to just keep having numbers go up for some reason, or you want to do a level 0 thing without a class). Ability scores, in case you're rolling up stats or something and need odd scores below 18. Ancestry/Class HP, in case future ancestries/classes have new HP, or if you want to add one-off or per-level permanent changes to Max HP.

Some care was taken for lots of little things for real-world usability. For example, to make sure that fonts would fit/be aligned appropriately and text sizes would change/multiple lines would be used if boxes had specifically limited space. Tab field order is a compromise between navigating the sheet quickly without a mouse and ease of mass changes. Tooltips explain some of the fields with some automation, so they're actually going to generally be relevant. At worst, they'll be blank or only be the all-caps names Acrobat provided as an initial starting point for automated form field detection. Fields all have relevant names, so it's easy to tell what field is what if you're making changes. The different spell traditions have slightly different shapes instead of checks in the little "book" just because I thought it was more fun.

I'll probably never update these again. It was close to 20 hours of work, mostly justified as doing it to learn how Acrobat works, since I've never used it before. I also don't write javascript, so if there are any eccentricities in my approach, that's probably why.

It's likely not perfectly "fillable" if you want to manually type (not write post-print) in every single field due to the automation on some fields that won't play nice. If people reaaaallly want a version with my carefully-aligned fields but zero automation, I might do it; basically it would involve removing scripts (pretty quick) and replacing a couple drop-down boxes with vanilla text fields, but I'm not particularly interested in maintaining this. Unless Hero Lab Online is terrible (I would describe it as "mediocre" for the playtest) I'll probably use it, anyway.

You can totally break some of the automation scripts if you put in really weird values (text when numbers or blank are expected), but it's just a character sheet, so that's fine.

Feel free to use the automation/form fields as a starting point for any altered versions you might have. If you just changed the background appearances on your own (colors/etc.) and have Acrobat, it's very easy to use the "replace page" feature under Organize Pages to just swap your versions in underneath the form fields. That may work with other editors. If you've moved fields around (i.e. Datalore), your changes would obviously require more work for the fields and calculation scripts, but this might still save you a bunch of time (particularly on the unaltered pages).


Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Pathfinder Accessories, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber

Well done, thanks for creating these.

Grand Lodge

Thanks for this ! I am definitely interested in this project. I'll be sure to check it out when I get home!


A Google Sheets version would be great if you have the time. No pressure though.


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Pathfinder Pathfinder Accessories Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
Darth Game Master wrote:
A Google Sheets version would be great if you have the time. No pressure though.

Ha, no. This was, as stated, mostly an exercise in learning Acrobat. I did a bunch of PDF forms in LibreOffice Draw a couple years ago because I didn't want to pay for Acrobat, and I had access to an Acrobat Pro license, so I figured I'd see what I was missing. I've also seen fillable PDFs (like an early one for the playtest) that got worse and worse as more automation was added, and I wondered how hard that was to avoid. Any appearance of a high amount of polish are just a side effect of personality and reinforcement from years of consulting, and the polish steps are part of the learning exercise, because that's where you find out lots of limitations to the product.

Short aside on Acrobat:
You can't, for instance, easily change one field type to another (reportedly earlier versions of Acrobat, before the DC era, had that feature). There's doesn't seem to be a straightforward way to mass-reorder fields, or filter fields to make selection easier, or let you replace the calculation script on more than one field at a time, etc. I found a way to have scripts automatically take the value if one was entered and stop calculating, but it had the side effect of disabling calculation by default when combined with inputs that I wanted to start displaying blank for printing reasons. Lots of stuff like that; just getting an idea what it does well and what it doesn't.

The scope of my automation effort was also narrowly defined, with automating the basic calculations that a player would have to do over and over again, especially anything with proficiencies which by definition change every single level. Other fields just needed to support text entry for readability, especially if trying to capture lots of information in a single box.

I also specifically skipped redesigning any part of the sheet layout, which plenty of others are doing. One of the nice things about using the official sheet is that everyone has stuff in the same place, which can be helpful for teaching new players. Someone could take a character generated with these sheets to literally any table with a new GM, and there wouldn't be anything unexpected about it other than everything is printed instead of filled out by hand. It also doesn't need to be updated for new classes, new feats, whatever. It's the basic character sheet. It's pretty evergreen; someone may still find the form fields and automation useful years from now when I've long forgotten it.

If you're looking for something totally outside the fillable PDF approach, plenty of other people are there for you. May I suggest Malk_Content's effort? I haven't spent any real time looking at it, because I'm not personally a fan of spreadsheets as character sheets, but it's also the first (though not the last, I'm sure) Google Sheets effort I've run across.


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Ah okay, thank you for the response.


Appreciate this, it can be a huge pain to work with these tools so it's awesome what you've managed to do with this sheet!


Thank you! These are awesome!


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber

These are great! Thanks for sharing! :)


Pathfinder Maps, Pathfinder Accessories Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber

These are great, thanks so much!


3 people marked this as a favorite.
Darth Game Master wrote:
A Google Sheets version would be great if you have the time. No pressure though.

If you're needing a Google Sheets Character sheet, I'll be working on one & hoping to get done within a week or two (followed by a GM sheet sometime afterward). Will make a thread once I've got version 1 ready to share & take feedback for improvement.

Grand Lodge

Very nice! Thank you Rico!!


Thanks for doing these. They are super useful to keep records clean!


Pathfinder Adventure, Adventure Path, Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber
RicoTheBold wrote:

Links first:

- Black and white manual fill only - no calculation (v1.0)
- Black and white with calculation (v1.2)
- Color manual fill only - no calculation (v1.0)
- Color with calculation (v1.2)

I'm creating a new thread for this rather than having it buried close to 200 posts deep in the main character sheet announcement thread.

Quoted below is a post I made in the character sheet thread. I ended up going ahead and making the "manual fill only" version for anyone who hates automatic calculation. I also ended up updating the calculation sheets one more time to fix a bug in calculation order that made Arcana work only intermittently (thanks MaxAstro for pointing out it wasn't working).

The text/images on the sheets themselves are unchanged; it's just the form fields that are added.

Quote:

I wasn't super pleased with the fillable version that was floating around; some little things were bugging me like some unaligned/sloppy field placement, borders left on some checkboxes, etc.

I created fully-fillable versions of the original sheets with automatic calculations for basically anything with a proficiency (AC, weapons, saves, perception, skills, class DC, spells), Maximum HP, and bulk capacity. Proficiencies use the little TEML boxes for calculations, so checking them on the sheet is actually relevant.

Because I hate automated sheets that make it impossible to use fillable fields that don't change much (if ever) and or print default numbers in the fields you might want to manually fill out because they change - say, if you're only printing a new sheet every few levels and are otherwise filling in numbers by hand with a pencil...most of the automation gets disabled if you leave

...

If you don't mind I have a question for ya...

im creating a sheet of my own...and I like the work done here..
im having an issue with the ClassDc equation..
I cant get it to give me a total..
I have Strength score as STRENGTH, and Strength mod as STR MODIFIER,
looking at the code I cant figure out what I have to change from the code used in your sheet to work

Shadow Lodge

thank you for creating this...this community always comes through

Dark Archive

+1

Thank you so much - this is great! I've downloaded it on 3 different devices at this point.

It took me a little while to realize that the 6/8/10/12 drop downs next to race and class were for the Hit Point calculations. Even though you have tool tips, for some reason I just never saw them. (User Error, I'm sure!).

Liberty's Edge

Darth Game Master wrote:
A Google Sheets version would be great if you have the time. No pressure though.

I made a Google sheet version. It doesn't auto-calculate conditions but it does most things.

The Scrolls, Spell, and Swords fields are for Pathfinder Society. You should be able to remove/replace them if not using the sheet for PFS.

I still want to add sheets for familiars and animal companions.


Pathfinder Pathfinder Accessories Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
MagnusPrime wrote:

If you don't mind I have a question for ya...

im creating a sheet of my own...and I like the work done here..
im having an issue with the ClassDc equation..
I cant get it to give me a total..
I have Strength score as STRENGTH, and Strength mod as STR MODIFIER,
looking at the code I cant figure out what I have to change from the code used in your sheet to work

Not sure if you're still struggling, but I took another look at the calculation script I wrote.

The code used in mine basically looks for fields with the same name but with different suffixes. This is done because it lets me use the same code for class DC as spell DC just by changing field names.

So it starts by looking at its own name, which we'll say is ClassDC.

It then checks to get the value from ClassDC_Ability, and if it's blank or not set, the script exits with a blank value so someone can write the DC in after they print the sheet. The input is a dropdown offering options of blank, Str, Dex, Con, Int, Wis, and Cha.

It then checks the proficiency bonus by pulling proficiency (ClassDC_Prof), The relevant ability modifier (using the ability pulled earlier and appending "Mod"), and then the item bonus (ClassDC_Item) with some error handling around that so the script continues even if the field doesn't exist (for SpellDC).

It then attempts to calculate, and if the proficiency or ability modifier values are blank, it exits with a blank as above.

----

So...I use StrMod as the field name for any bonuses/DCs based on the Strength ability modifier. For my code to work for you, you'd need to replace any field names that are different, and make sure any other fields being called also exist. ClassDC_Ability would also likely need to be updated to provide options that match your field names, and you'd similarly need to at least rename the proficiency calculation, which would also require renaming the TEML checkboxes.

In other words, the field names are very important to the code, because I also used only one script for all of the proficiencies. Same with all of the check bonuses with a static ability (skills, ranged weapons, perception), and all of the check bonuses with a potentially variable ability (melee weapons, spell attack). You can go back and hardcode those field names, but it adds a lot of complexity to maintenance/troubleshooting. Notably, my ability score modifier fields have the abilities they calculate from hardcoded, which was basically because I wrote them first and hadn't gotten to reading any Acrobat javascript API documentation yet, and I didn't really see the value in going back and changing them when they're just like two lines anyway.


Charon Onozuka wrote:
Darth Game Master wrote:
A Google Sheets version would be great if you have the time. No pressure though.
If you're needing a Google Sheets Character sheet, I'll be working on one & hoping to get done within a week or two (followed by a GM sheet sometime afterward). Will make a thread once I've got version 1 ready to share & take feedback for improvement.

One of my players actually updated your playtest sheet and it seems pretty functional with PF2 rule set. Not quite perfect, but I can send you a copy if is helpful.

Liberty's Edge

All hail rico the bold


Pathfinder Pathfinder Accessories Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
Shadrick Hawkins wrote:

+1

Thank you so much - this is great! I've downloaded it on 3 different devices at this point.

It took me a little while to realize that the 6/8/10/12 drop downs next to race and class were for the Hit Point calculations. Even though you have tool tips, for some reason I just never saw them. (User Error, I'm sure!).

They're pretty tiny, so it's easy to not hover over them. I also mention them in the HP_Max field's tooltip.

One of my players still asked what they were for. So don't feel bad!

Also, FYI the drop-downs allow custom input, so if (for instance) you take Toughness you can just add 1 to the value for your class and it will give you an extra HP each level. The Ancestry dropdown can be used to modify the total on a one-time basis (if something gave a flat +3 HP or whatever), and If they publish some new ancestry with a different HP value that's not in the dropdown, you can still use the sheet without waiting on an update just because I didn't foresee some different HP value.

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