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Monday, 9th June, 2008, 05:36 AM #1
Cutpurse (Lvl 5)
UPDATED 6/20/08! kiznit's 4e Fold-over Character Sheet w/ Cards
After the pretty good reception of my 4e Combat Crib Sheet, I thought I'd take a stab at making an easier-to-use and easier-to-read version of the character sheet, the official one of which I find to be pretty blech and I bet a lot of you do too.
This sheet is meant to be the ideal analogue sheet for those of you who eschew computers, but I'd love it if someone (like NeoLithic did with an earlier version) wanted to make a form-fillable or even an auto-calculating version.
Better pics of the sheet filled out coming soon! (The wife has the digital camera, these were taken with my cel phone)
The Power Cards come in two flavors! Four of the six cards are basic attack cards, the remaining two are trigger or non-attack cards. These could definitely use some play-testing, so let me know how they work.
Since it's usually pretty tough to print color onto cardstock, I personally recommend getting a few different colors of cardstock paper and then printing B&W to help differentiate At-Will/Daily/Encounter.
- A good character sheet has to keep several things in mind. First and foremost is how easy it is to play off of - i.e. does it "read" well right-to-left, top-to-bottom? Are the important items obvious and easy to find? Do the constantly-changing stuff have lots of room for notes, scribbling and re-scribbling?
- In terms of layout the 3.5e DMG2 took a nice hard look at this, redesigning stat blocks so that basic encounter-first abilities are towards the top (init, senses, languages, etc.) then Defensive abilities, then Offensive abilities, then Special abilities, and so on. I think a good character sheet has to incorporate some of this prioritizing.
- Secondly, a character sheet has to be easy to fill out, specifically in the order of how one creates a character (see p.14 4ePHB). This traditionally does things like put the Ability scores nicely in the top-left where everybody knows where they are despite the 3eDMG2 and other pre-generated character sheets (like from H1 and DDWWGD) usually putting them last. So we've got two somewhat conflicting "methodologies" of how to lay this puppy out, and I've tried to find some nice middle ground.
- Next is how big to make it. A well-designed character sheet usually tries to fit on two pages, since double-sided on cardstock is nicely compact and quite durable. I've seen some really cool character sheets laid out on four pages, which if printed on a single 11x17 cardstock makes a really nice "foldover" character booklet, if you will. Other character sheets range to even longer.
- My hope is to pare this thing down to a two-pager, but seeing how dense the official sheet is I know that's going to be a nightmare. It bothers me quite a bit that all your character powers on the official sheet, arguably your most crucially examined options, are slimmed down to single lines with simple checkboxes in one corner of the page. Since I already know that I'm going to have to "space out" the entire sheet to make it much more readable, I was thinking of building a PDF that consists of 2-pages plus a third page of various blank fill-outable power cards laid out nicely, perhaps in a 6-up. That way you could print your main character sheet out nicely double-sided, and print out as many of the 3rd page you need to be able to cut apart and track all your powers. Sound cool? I hope so.
Download the sheet here (v1.0):
http://www.koboldstyle.org/stuff/4eC..._kiznit_v1.pdf (7.2 megs)
NeoLithic's Form-Fillable Version (Now updated for the latest version)!
Thanks, Neo! Please give this guy some props for his hard work as well.
This is very much meant to be a living document. Any comments or critiques are still very much appreciated!
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