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The Roleplaying Assistant 5.0 Beta 1 Preview
I will admit, I'm not a Dungeons and Dragons player. So, when I started reading about The Roleplaying Assistant, I wondered if I would have anything to write about, since it was mostly designed for D&D players. My deadline was fast approaching, and I was getting to the panic point. I finished browsing the website and installed the software. Installation was very easy, default options for where the file will be installed are provided, or you can chose your own. Within minutes, I had RPA installed and running.
What can the Roleplaying Assistant do for me?
Roleplaying Assistant has something for everyone who loves role-playing games. RPA generates complete, and I do mean complete, characters. RPA currently can create characters for Advanced Dungeons and Dragons, Star Wars, Cyberpunk and Rolemaster. Future versions will include other role-playing games, as well. While not taking advantage of all the options of The Roleplaying Assistant, there are several features of RPA that would be helpful in any roleplaying game.
The first thing that I found useful was the ability to generate character names. As an RPG fan, I find that the hardest thing I have to do is create a character name that isn't already taken. RPA makes naming your character easy and fun. The Name List Generator provides 14 options to create your character's name. Some of the options include Lovecraftian names, Russian, Japanese, World of Greyhawk, names based on the latin names of some plants, and others. Select the type of name you want, and click on generate. That's it.
Generation of a complete character is just as easy. A step-by-step guide to help you create your character is available under the "Help" option. I decided to create an elven mage. Clicking on the "New" icon in the RPA interface brought up a blank character screen. Following the instructions, I clicked on the class/level box, and the class & level window appeared. I chose a level 3 mage, then clicked on the "Generator" icon. A new window popped up for me to choose the race and name for my character. I chose elf, then decided to use Tolkein's names for the generator. I was also given multiple choices for randomizing the number of spells the PC can cast and also the dice-throwing method used. Next, I clicked on "Generate Character" and Harvali Mer was born. A 108 year old schizophrenic Elven Mage, 56 inches tall, with white hair and green eyes. Harvali was born in Elm, carries a bruised and faded flower in her pocket, and loves spicy carrots.
I was amazed at the volume of information that RPA covered. Character, hit points and the ability to turn undead, physical characteristics and saving throws, your character's proficiencies, spells, spheres/schools, gear, thief abilities, and background are in clickable tab format. Detailed information is well-organized under each tab, and easily updated or changed. Role Playing Assistant can print out of your character's information. Creating and printing a spellbook is a very useful feature. RPA has the ability to add and delete spells from your spellbook, you can even delete the entire spellbook and start over. Spells can also be added and deleted from the database.
The registered version of Role Playing Assistant includes a freeware Mapper, a free Fractal World Generator, and the Randomizer.
The mapper will create dungeon and science fiction maps. Choose the size you want the map to be and the number of entries, then click on generate map, and view the map in your browser. I had fun with the Fractal World Generator, I really did make something that looked like a world map. Select the amount of water and ice in your world, the size you would like the map to be, the number of iterations ( I found using numbers between 700 and 1000 to work best), then click on generate. Your new map appears, ready to print. The Randomizer generates many, many items for roleplaying. I've listed a few already, and I couldn't possibly cover everything here. I spent hours generating story ideas, dragons, traits, herbal names, coats-of-arms, events, and coming up with many role-playing ideas.
The only thing I found disappointing in the Role Playing Assistant, is the lack of games it is compatible with. Even so, RPA offers enough features that it could be used with many other games. The database can be modified, but unfortunately this and some other options were only available to registered users and I couldn't try them. The help files and step-by-step tutorial are excellent, I found them understandable and well-organized.
Yea or Nay?
A very well-thought-out design, an actually "helpful" help file, and the enormous amount of features makes The Roleplaying Assistant a "must" for all roleplayers. I recommend this one.
The Roleplaying Assistant Features:
* Import/Export Options
* Ability to modify the database and reports
* Weather generator
* Printing options for all reports
* Name generator
* Dice roller
* Fractal World generator
* Dungeon Map generator
* Easy updating of characters
- Pentium 200 is recommended
- Win95/98/NT Older versions are available on the website for Windows 3.1 and DOS
- 49 MG RAM
* Fantasy and science fiction drawings, etc., are available on the website to add to your RPA experience.