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Subject: App Development - I need your help! rss

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Adam Wells
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Hello everyone!

As things have progressed, i found out that there's already a lovely gloomhaven card app out there written in Javascript, so I've decided to move a little away from that. What i'm looking at now are a ton of threads about circumventing the legacy element of the game, and/or resetting a box. After deciding that I sorta regret tearing up cards for my 120 dollar board game (We'll come back to that in a second), I've become interested in two aspects of gloomhaven that are again singing with the idea of a management app:

1) Campaign tracking. I'm sure in two to three years, I'll see the gloomhaven box and go "Man, this was fun to start... I wish I could do that again" and really, sincerely want a new copy of Gloomhaven. Since that's probably not going to be possible, I'm looking at a way to handle the map from a digital perspective, and attach the related Scenarios to it, along with road and city cards.

2) Expandability. Gloomhaven - in my mind - is a wonderous toybox full of great tools for creating adventures. I can't be the only one really wanting to have a rulebook that lets me build my own scenarios (Oh, wait, Isaac did that!) and more importantly my own characters to trek through Gloomhaven and even stranger places. I've been really digging the idea of a Savvas Engineer for a while. Tinkerer. Whatever.

How can you help?

I need data. Mountains of data that due to our rule of 'legacy games are permanent' in our group now are not available. If you have a listing of road cards, their numbers, and text, let me know. I could use it to further this idea.

Likewise, if you're handy with game design and want to start chopping up characters for point two, let me know. I'd love to use your ideas in a build of this tool.
 
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David Latimore
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Is this something you have Isaac's permission to do?

It sounds like you want to have the full text of all the event cards in the app, and not just references to the numbers so one can keep track of what's at the bottom and what's been shuffled in, etc. is that correct?
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Troy Laurin
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alphasquid wrote:
Is this something you have Isaac's permission to do?

This. The text of the city and road cards and the contents of the scenario book are very clearly covered by copyright. Reproducing that content for your own personal use is probably covered by fair use*, but sharing with others without a valid license is unambiguously infringing the copyright.

Isaac has very graciously given us his art resources to facilitate creating new content for Gloomhaven, but he noted on the same thread that the intent was not to reproduce what is already in the box, and that he would prefer you come to him for confirmation if that's what you plan on doing.

An app could help to create new content, by positioning text, using the right fonts and symbols, etc... but keep in mind that nanDECK already exists and is nearly perfect for this**, so you'd have to make any offering more compelling than what already exists.

And I say all of this as someone who is very excited to see what people can come up with using the Gloomhaven system.

* - fair use laws differ greatly from country to country. YMMV.
** - I think I'd struggle to get elements and other icons in-line with the text, but if I could figure out how to embed them into the font then that would be problem solved.
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Brad B
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I would love an app that tracked city/road events and players could upload custom events that you could add to your decks.
 
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Steven Bond
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I'm curious as to why you tore cards up in the first place, as the instructions say not to. The game is already able to be reset with the print out files, or some bookkeeping like I'm doing since I'm tracking to campaigns. Granted I would like to see a way to keep track of things easier as I use a notebook and spreadsheet app on the phone to do so.

As for a digital map, there is already an interactive PDF version of the map you can download that has check boxes to toggle scenario visibility on the map, and to show they have been completed.
 
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David desJardins
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geobaldi5 wrote:
I'm curious as to why you tore cards up in the first place, as the instructions say not to.


Where does it say not to destroy cards removed from the game? I don't see that. I can't find any instructions regarding what to do when they are removed from the game.

He explained why they destroyed the cards (although it's not a particularly good reason): due to our rule of 'legacy games are permanent' in our group.
 
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Anthony K
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I just finished my making an app for the road and city events. I put all the events in the 3x3 card sleeve pages, scanned each side and then wrote a python script to save all the sections individually, that way I didn't have to read a single card. I now have a folder with 450 images, 1 for each event front and 2 for the back. That way I won't even spoil the A/B option when I choose the B/A option. It's not too hard, but I won't be sharing it given that Isaac is very active in the forums and has yet to okay anything like this. I think it's fair to assume that he is not okay with it. You are welcome to copy my methods though
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Adam Wells
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DaviddesJ wrote:
geobaldi5 wrote:
I'm curious as to why you tore cards up in the first place, as the instructions say not to.


Where does it say not to destroy cards removed from the game? I don't see that. I can't find any instructions regarding what to do when they are removed from the game.

He explained why they destroyed the cards (although it's not a particularly good reason): due to our rule of 'legacy games are permanent' in our group.


This is exactly the reason. We've never really gotten over how good of an experience Risk Legacy was, and we really, really like destroying things. So, for my group it works.

Though, to be entirely honest i'm already on board for the april kickstarter to get a second copy just to develop off of.

As to Isaac's permission, for now i'm operating under creative commons open-source. Since i'm probably going to have a wealth of issues just getting the text of the cards together, that part may not get off the ground. The other part of this is the general time-crunchiness i find myself in.

I mean, if its that much of a concern, yes, i'll get in contact with Isaac and see what he says. Generally, when I do something like this I don't plan on making money off of it, and everything comes out of my own pocket, but I get where you're coming from.
 
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Troy Laurin
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wells101 wrote:
As to Isaac's permission, for now i'm operating under creative commons open-source. Since i'm probably going to have a wealth of issues just getting the text of the cards together, that part may not get off the ground. The other part of this is the general time-crunchiness i find myself in.

I mean, if its that much of a concern, yes, i'll get in contact with Isaac and see what he says. Generally, when I do something like this I don't plan on making money off of it, and everything comes out of my own pocket, but I get where you're coming from.

If you think it's ok to take Isaac's copyrighted text and release it to the public, just because it's open source and you don't plan on making money from it... you're wrong.

That would be an explicit violation on Isaac's copyright on the text, plus whoever owns the copyright on the graphical layout of the cards, to the extent it is copyrightable (which is more than none, in the US), if you do so without a valid license. It doesn't really matter how many copies you buy, just the terms of the license you have. Note that the absence of a license is indication of restriction, not permission.

You are completely free to release anything that you create under whatever license you like (and I respect that you support open source), but a simple transcription of the text or layout of the event cards doesn't count. Note that what @acemind1 has done is very likely to be covered by fair use (in countries where fair use laws exist), largely on the basis that he isn't sharing the result.

See also MythBusting: Game Design and Copyright, Trademarks, and Patents (US Law).


Curiously (and academically), character ability cards would have a lower "level" of copyright; card titles may or may not be covered, the artwork is definitely covered, the functional text probably wouldn't be covered, though the iconography would be. It's unclear whether the layout would receive any protection; historically functional layouts aren't considered to be protected, but there have been enough rulings in the other direction (in the US) to make the matter very murky.

The flavour text on the event cards is clearly covered by copyright, though the reward summaries probably aren't. I personally wouldn't hazard a guess on the option text.

Note: I am not a lawyer in any country, but I read a lot about copyright in various countries due to a morbid interest in the topic, and the related topic of copyright reform. I don't think I'm wrong about anything I've written here, but I'd appreciate correction if I am.
 
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