December Newsletter 2013
It’s hard to believe the year is drawing to a close! We’ve had a lot of exciting announcements in 2013, and this month is no different. December’s highlights include info about our upcoming Encounter Builder for Hero Lab, a special announcement from Catalyst Game Labs, and much more! Break out the party hats and noise makers, check out our news below, and have a Happy New Year from the Lone Wolf team!
- Realm Works® Release Update
- Announcing the new Hero Lab® Encounter Builder
- Hero Lab 4.3 Released
- Shadowrun 5th Edition Update
- This Month’s Pathfinder® Updates
- Farewell to Isis
Since our last newsletter, we’ve run into a few new hurdles as we work to get Realm Works out the door. The good news is we’ve been able to release full server syncing to the Beta team and all eligible Kickstarter backers. While the latest Beta version is performing well for most users, there are still some issues that must be addressed before releasing to everyone.
We had hoped to make a pre-release version of Realm Works available before Christmas, but unfortunately there are some key items that need to be put into place or resolved before we can release to the public. The remaining pieces require the whole team working together, and after the long hours they’ve been working for the last few months, most of the Realm Works team is taking some well-deserved vacation over the holidays.
We‘ll be reassessing the release timetable after the holidays when the team reconvenes. For more info on the V1.0 release, check out our latest announcement on our website.
For those of you waiting for Realm Works, we’ve formally announced initial pricing! For a limited time after release, Realm Works will be available for a special introductory price of only $49.99 that includes 6 months of our standard tier cloud service (a $24.99 value). Details on additional cloud service tiers are forthcoming, at which point users can upgrade to a higher tier if they choose. Additional pricing information will be posted on our website over the next two weeks.
You may have also seen that last month we posted a job opening for a Data Entry Specialist. Once we find the right person and get them up to speed, they’ll facilitate getting licensed content into place for sale through the Realm Works Content Market. We’ve been reviewing resumes and begun the interviewing process with those candidates that we felt best fit the position. We’re looking forward to bringing someone on board soon to help out with this objective. A big “thank you” to everyone who applied for the position!
We’ll have more news about the Realm Works release in January, so be sure to “Like” Realm Works on Facebook or follow @lonewolfdevel on Twitter for the latest updates from the development team. If you have any questions about Realm Works, please ask them on our forums!
Yes, Game Masters, you read that correctly! Thanks to two of our newest staff members, Steve and Michele, it will soon be even easier to put together encounters for your games! While Hero Lab users already have access to many stock characters and monsters, we know it can be difficult to navigate through everything that’s available and put together the perfect battle. With our new Encounter Builder, GMs will be able to create encounters based on the difficulty of the enemies. For Pathfinder, all you need to is select the CR and you’re well on your way to putting together the perfect encounter for your players. This feature will be available for all game systems supported within Hero Lab!
To tell you more, Steve and Michele have ventured out from programming land to share some screenshots and explain what this great new feature can do. Thanks Steve and Michele!
Thanks to the help of our intrepid beta testers, we’re finishing off the year by bringing you a new update to Hero Lab – version 4.3 is now available!
This new Hero Lab release includes three important changes. Firstly, portfolios saved by this version of Hero Lab are now 10-20% smaller than before, depending on the portfolio and game system.
Saving 10-20% may not sound like a lot, but a sizeable chunk of your data file download is made up of portfolios – anywhere up to 2/3 of them for some games. That means data file downloads should occur 10-20% faster, and if you need to transfer saved portfolios between computers or devices, they’ll go more speedily. The custom output XML format will be unchanged by this, and importing Hero Lab content to a virtual tabletop or other tool should continue to work as it did before.
Our second feature will hopefully make data file authors happy, as we’re making the first of some planned editor improvements by adding grouped tabs to the editor. Instead of always seeing all 64 tabs when you’re editing data files, some games will now split them up into groups, which only show tabs relevant to that group.
This is going to be useful for games like Pathfinder, which currently has a staggering 64 tabs – that’s as many tabs as Hero Lab can currently support. With these tabs now split into their own groups, we’ve added long-awaited editor support for armies, legendary items, kingdoms, and more!
Finally, we’ve tweaked the handling of long lists on choose forms. There should now be much less of a delay after selecting an item from such a list (such as selecting from the list of spells in Pathfinder), and in some cases Hero Lab will now display a “please wait” message rather than appearing to hang as it searches the list.
We’re planning more updates soon, like the new encounter builder we talked about above, so keep your eyes open for more Hero Lab news in the new year!
As we described last month, our data file authors are working hard at incorporating Shadowrun 5th edition into Hero Lab. This month, we’ve got something new in 5th edition to show you – adding enchantments to items.
Using the new Enchanting rules, you can bind magical effects into mundane items, then activate the spells at your convenience. Hero Lab allows you to track the enchantments you’ve put on things, including their Force and Potency, and will automatically calculate the dice pool and drain for the spell. Here’s an example – a knife with a one-shot Acid Stream power you can use in an emergency:
We’ll have more news on Shadowrun 5th edition in next month’s newsletter.
Empowered after meeting with the Crusader Queen, you and your companions must travel to a stronghold on the edge of the world in an attempt to stop the creation of magical potions, which grants demons mythic powers. Beyond the fortress is a succubus queen’s lair, and the source of the magical items needed to create the potions. Can you and the rest of your party stop the creation of the magical elixirs? Or will you lose yourself to the forces of evil? This update for Pathfinder will have everything players need to battle the forces of evil in the newest Adventure Path, “The Midnight Isles”. We’ve added all the player content from this Adventure Path into Hero Lab as part of this month’s free update, available now!
A new add-on for Pathfinder, “Magical Marketplace” is joining “Mythic Origins”, and “Blood of the Moon” in our Player Companion #13 package, available now for only $4.99. With items like enchanted tattoos, drow devices, and new weapon and armor abilities, this add-on will provide you with over 50 new magical items to deck out your favorite characters!
The perfect tool for any Game Master, the “Inner Sea NPC Codex” provides over 60 vibrant characters, from honor-bound knights to worthless scoundrels. We’re happy to announce that these characters are now available for use by all Pathfinder users! You can find them by choosing “Import Stock Hero” from the Portfolio menu.
It’s been just shy of 20 years since Lone Wolf Development was founded.
A mere three weeks after that auspicious day, Isis joined us as a rescue kitty. She was a part of it all since the beginning and served proudly as our unofficial office mascot for nearly two decades. She was a free-spirited, playful, and gentle soul – and a wonderful companion through all the ups and downs. Unfortunately, Isis’ curtain call finally came, and we had to bid farewell to her the day after Christmas. She will be sorely missed, but her memory will live on in our hearts, as her spirit scampers off to chase field mice once again. Safe travels, dear girl….