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We've been offered the option to take over Hero Lab 4e Development

Started by Cryptoknight, April 13, 2014, 10:19:57 AM

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I'm still working out the final details with Colen from LoneWolf, but likely we'll be taking over the 4e development and bug fixes.

The big benefit is you will no longer need the downloader.  We're going to publish the full data sets, with the bug fixes plugged in.

What this does mean is if you're using the patches from the .user files that we've put up here, you'll need to remove those files and then set your character to use the original powers and items.

That said, I'm hoping to do one release per month at a minimum as we try to get as much squared away before the release of Next and the possible retirement of Character Builder and the Compendium.

Sean Abel

 :oI just saw this post TONIGHT! all I can say is WOW and I will do what I can to help.
Does that mean that Lone Wolf will no longer be selling 4E data set if someone purchase the HL program?  ???

Last If you or anyone from here is going to Gen Con I would like to meet up, just to say hi and then maybe look at the work load that needs to be done.

Wherever you go that's where you are!


Sorry for not getting back to you... they offered and then let it die off... not sure where it is anymore...

They never sold the 4e ruleset, they sold the kit to make game systems which included 4e and Savage Worlds... we'd just maintain the data files... but there was so little interest for so long... it's probably too late now.


Back when it looked like LW wanted us to take this over (before Colen dropped off the radar again)... I had started taking all the patches uploaded here and modifying the data files directly so that I could export the entire game system...

Sean Abel

I am very interested, in finishing the data set all the missing info and fixing what not correct. I am not a program but I can do basics and try as you can see by the fixes I have worked on. Just let me know what I can do.

If you have a walk through for making classes and races I will start working on those as well.

4E is all there will be for me and D&D (hey that rhymes)  :-*
Wherever you go that's where you are!


Lol... if I had a walkthrough for classes and races, that would mean I've made one...

I figure we'll just have to figure it out... I've copied some to handle things like the Renegade Red Wizard (because it's so close, but so slightly different)... but making one from scratch?

Not here... at least not yet... and this month would suck for this kind of work... I'm in some severe training all month... learning a whole new development paradigm for work.


I've started making a spreadsheet of code words and phrases, as well as notes of how they cannot be used and what should be used instead. When it gets a little less scattered I'll post it, but right now it's basically just a random collection of bits that I grabbed to make it easier to make the Berserker.

I've not been using the editor much, but I can probably whack out a template class sometime next week if you want to try using a text editor to make your classes, as I've now had a few hours of pouring through how they work.

Sean Abel

Hey guys just checking in, my break for the holidays is coming to an end very soon, but I am still here and would love any notes you have to help the programmer light people still work in the files to make things run.
Wherever you go that's where you are!



Here is my (ongoing) spreadsheet of text editing code. If there is something I've not added yet but that you need, let me know and I'll work on that next. Mostly I've just been doing the work so that I can more easily fix things, so I've not fully documented everything yet, nor am I likely to do so unless people want it specifically. If you use the in-program editor function, it will be less useful for you, but if you want to try using a text editor, this will help.

I would also suggest using Notepad++ as your text editor -- use the "Language > XML" option on your .user files (or use some other XML editor). This will make the text much more readable.

If you are going back and forth between a text editor and the HL editor, you should not use the <!-- Comment--> system because HL strips those out when it saves the file, so you will lose your work. You have to use <comment> ended with </comment>. This will show in the editor, but I think you can only have one per thing (power, race, language, item, whatever. from <thing id-....> though </thing>.) Clearly this is less useful than the XML comments, but you can't have everything.

Sean Abel

That is one helpful spread sheet, I am using Editpad Pro and checking things in the editor to make sure that they work.
Wherever you go that's where you are!


My wife gave birth to our second child a few months ago so my free time for working on this has been severely curtailed, but if you find anything that doesn't work out any options that I missed, please let me know so that I can update it. The more comprehensive the spreadsheet is, the less time it takes to fix other items and the easier it is for others to jump in and fix something.

Sean Abel

2nd Child CONGRATS!

I am attempting to figure out how to make character classes that are missing but my time is evaporating before I can form it.
Wherever you go that's where you are!


I know exactly what you mean. I've been working on the Vampire class on and mostly off for about 9 months now. In general it's not particularly difficult unless the class has a bunch of strange functions. It's just a heck of a lot of tedious data entry and copy pasting.

The Vampire class is almost entirely on rails, so it's quite different from normal classes, buy still quite a lot of data entry. I think I've got the base about 95% there (the last 5 being Vampire only problems that fixing them will make it better but not fixing them will not keep it from being playable), but then only the first 4 or so levels of powers and abilities completed.

If you're getting stuck on anything in particular if be happy to give you code or layout help. I seen to remember making a rather thorough new class tutorial, but I'm not sure where it is. If I find it and it's as good as I recall, I'll post it somewhere. Likely I got it about 90 percent done then abandoned it for something more fun, like debugging a MySQL/php timing problem.

For a while I was trying to make tutorials for each part of the process because I thought that maybe if I demystified the code other people with less of a cosing foundation but more time to burn could do some of the necessary but time consuming data messaging.

I apologize for any typos in this wall of text. I was typing this on my phone while trying to get a 4 month old to sleep.

Sean Abel

I would love a tutorial, visual learn and book learn by force, so if I can see it and then grasp it I am golden! Then I will be able to help crunch the add powers in factor.
1. Did you build the class first or its powers (or by default feats class specifics ect) 
2. Best way to start a class, copy a similar one or just add a blank/new class and go from that point?

I have attempted to start the Blackguard (Paladin Striker) but have not been able to wrap my head around the best way to start and feel as though I have messed up more than made progress.

Good luck with little ones,  :D those days are behind me now and its just a college/teenager that I deal with! All very much worth it (the children and the fixing program HL)
Wherever you go that's where you are!

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