So one of the things I’ve been doing, as part of my ongoing efforts to ruthlessly exterminate any and all free time I might have, is working on the Anime Heroes delve for the Tekkoshocon RPG room. This is sort of a big deal for me, as I tend to not really focus on combat in my own campaigns, but rather prefer to keep things on a more intellectual and RP-centric level. That doesn’t work so much when your players’ characters are modeled on Ash Ketchum, Toph Bei Fong, and Ichigo Kurosaki, three characters not exactly known for their inclination towards talking things through. So they have to fight it out, and I need to give them a decent shot at doing so.
To this end, I’ve been elbow-deep in the Dungeons and Dragons Compendium, which is a great resource for the average DM. There’s just a few hiccups, and that’s that, for the most part, there aren’t really a whole hell of a lot of variety of monsters available to players at Level 1. More immediately, getting data out of the compendium and into a workable sheet for use at the table is not exactly the easiest thing in the world, particularly if you need to adjust a monster’s level down a notch or two in order to make it a fair fight. (And yeah, there’s gonna be one encounter that just plain won’t be a fair fight, because what’s life without a little risk?) To date, I tried setting up an OpenOffice template for that purpose, arranging the carefully-constructed stat blocks and going from there.
The Cheshire Cat, in American McGee’s Alice, said: “There’s a nasty name for people who insist on doing things the hard way.” To that end, I snagged a couple of utilities that make life much, much easier.
That’s where the Pixlr Grabber add-on comes into play. Pixlr can specify a region of the browser window, and either save it to disk as a PNG or copy it to your clipboard. From there, you can paste it into your favorite word processor or page layout tool and arrange it as needed or desired. Make sure you do a test run to see how big/small the text needs to be.
Those should cut down a TON of the manual labor needed for me to get the encounters ready. At this point the hardest part is figuring out how to avoid sending my players against yet another kobold horde.