|Sources||System Reference Document on page 0|
All the help I could hope to provide to my helpers.
Remember, you can e-mail me or IM me at any time if you need help!
Adding more help
If you're reading this because you can edit the database, you can also edit this help. So, if you figure anything out that you don't want to forget, or think would be helpful to others, click that handy "edit this" link above and add it!
Names versus Sort Names
Names are how you would normally read them, while sort names try to group escalating powers within a name.
Here's a quick example:
Sort Name: Status, Greater
Please try to follow this guideline as it will make human and machine searching and linking work properly.
The only place where duplicates are allowed is in Items. Everywhere else, using the same name twice is BAD. If two different spells use the same name, rename the newer one and create a spell group named "Duplicate [original spell name]" and place both spells into it. The new name you give the spell should be as similar as possible to the original name. An example is float and Float of Livre d'Aquatha, Both of these spells were named Float, but the second one came from a dragon magazine. I used the name of the spell book it is described as my differentiator.
At this time, the database does not support deleting any main entries. You can delete book references, groupings, etc, but not a spell or the like. Your only means of resolution is to replace the thing that needs deleted with another entry. Basically, edit the old one out of existance.
The Back Button
Watch your use of the back button, sometimes you may create something multiple times if you back button back to the original blank page.
This may be the desired result for some special cases, but normally this is not good.
New [something] By Splat.
These links at the top of the edit pages are there to save you time. "Splats" are how the text for what the screen discusses naturally occur. A spell splat looks like the main spell description in the PHB. A feat splat looks like any feat description in the PHB. An item splat, which is not yet implemented (8/31/05), will look like the primary item description.
The splat pages describe their own use fairly well. No splat page automatically creates a new item until after you have reviewed the edit page and click the "Update" button. All splat pages will bring up an existing entry with the same name if one already exists. Use your back button to change the name of your new thing and try again. If the splat and the found thing are the same, then update appropriately.
If you're using image PDF files, I don't want to know about it. If you are typing things in yourself and you have a scanner, check your scanner's software and see if you have an OCR program that came with it. If it did, use it! It will save you time to copy and paste the OCR text over typing it yourself. (Unless you are a very skilled typist. But your fingers may prefer the lighter abuse of the OCR software.)
I also recommend a C-Pen. I have a C-Pen 10, although the C-Pen 20 appears better. I use mine often to read the short spell descriptions and to capture other random text when appropriate.
Should you notice any common OCR errors that your OCR software generates (such as id8 instead of 1d8), let me know and I can update the splat processor to automatically clean those out. My C-Pen likes to add an = sign before capital Ys, so I have it clean that for me.
Description boxes and HTML tags
If there are NO <p> tags in the text, the site will automatically replace all new-lines with them. This is ok for most things and saves time when you can get the text in with just new lines at each paragraph. However, if you going to use ordered lists, unordered lists, tables, or other block level tags that conflict with the paragraph tag then you will need to explicitly place them, otherwise you will have random paragraph tags in your other elements and not validate.
Additionally, I prefer tables to have a '1' border, I have yet to find the right mix of CSS rules to get what the browers generate for border='1', so please make sure to create your tables with borde='1'. I also prefer all attributes to be in single quotes. Should you find any tables that violate this, please fix them.
I frequently play in campaigns that feature Recharge Magic from Unearthed Arcana. If you don't know what to set the recharge time to, please set it to Prohibited, so I know to examine it and set one.
If a spell appears in more than one source and the "Level:" lines do not match, please do not delete any unlisted classes or domains. Frequently the missing classes or domains are simply not mentioned in the book. If a level changes, update that. I generally do not even remove unlisted SRD classes.
All spells have a range, a target/effect/area, School, casting time, duration, short description, long description, and a source. If you forget the source, the spell will not appear in any listings because the site will not know the copyright state. If a spell has a range of Personal, the target is invariably the word "You". The reverse is also true. Personal spells almost never have any Spell resistance nor Saving Throw lines. Do not populate them unless the spell description adaquetely explains why something should be there.
The Short Description is for the description found in the book. If you wish to expand on it, use the Medium description field. In many queries, this will be used as a substitute for the short description. You may revise the short description if it does not agree with the long description.
If a spell has a damage type, please use the phrase "_____ damage" (fill in the blank) in the short description. That is, if you know a spell does cold damage, don't just say "A blast of cold does 2d6 damage" say "A blast of cold does 2d6 cold damage." Other damage types include force damage, acid damage, fire damage, sonic damage, holy damage, etc. This makes it easier to search for spells by specific damage type. (ATB note: Actually, the damage types will likely end up having an energy type tag put around them, I just haven't gotten energy types as their own thing yet. Elements will be around soon too.)
"Saving Throw: Yes" is meaningless! E-mail WOTC customer support and ask them what it should have been. Use your best judgement and fill in something meaningful until you get a response.
Try to use an existing options in the picklists rather than adding new ones if possible. I don't mean completely change the spell, but if the picklist offers "Concentration (maximum 10 rounds)" and the spell calls for "Concentration for up to 10 rounds", use the existing option.
Spells all use "min." for minutes, please don't add lines that say "minutes".
Spells are written in the PHB in the second person. Please modify spells that are written in the third person to be in the second person to make the site present spells in a consistent voice. The Book of Vile Darkness contains a number of spells in the third person. I did not fix all of them. If you come across any spells with the wrong voice and you have time, feel free to fix them.
There isn't much to say about feats. Don't worry about the "Full_Text" blocks, those are from the feeding database I used. I don't need these filled in as I can regenerate them from the other blocks that I do want.
The "Prelude" section refers to the text in a feat description that appears between the name of the feat and the prerequisites. This field is limited to around 255 characters. Which generally fills the box up exactly. If you need more space than that, copy the remainder into the benefit section. Edit it so it appears nicely.
This is an area that I haven't done as much with as I'd like, please provide feedback on how these pages could be made easier or better.
Please fill in the "Slot" picklist with Held for things you use with your hands, like weapons, lanterns, etc.
Please fill in the hardness and HP if you have the time to look up what these numbers probably are.
Deities have so many choices of domains based off of what sources you find them in. Once I find a domain attributed to a deity, unless I find another source that explicitly revokes it, it remains.
When creating a new source, make sure the "Short name" is unique, or the site will be mean to you. Also, try to stick with something short (like 5 characters or less.)
Please look at other similar existing sources to get a sense of what I'm looking for when you create a new one. Or just e-mail me and ask for the new source to be added.
The "Order on Copyright listing should be some random number in the 10000 range or higher. It is used on the Copyright page to sort the OGL sources.
The release date should be as accurate as possible, although if no specific date is known, but the month and year is, use the first day of that month. This is my planned replacement for sorting should the need arise. It is also a useful metric.
The Open Gaming License source checkbox should be checked only for sources that are entirely OGL. If any part of what will be entered into this database is not OGL, then do not check this off. It is also bad form not to ask the OGL source company permission first, or at least let them know you are doing it.
The Explicit copyright given checkbox indicates that the source has granted permission to show the full contents on this site. The source does not have to be OGL to give this, it just means I have gotten written permission to reproduce their content free of charge.
The GrayHawk Category picklist is a dangerous thing to change. It resets all the spells in that source to whatever category you choose. It doesn't stick on the source editing page, but what you do is instantaneously done to all spells. Try not to fuss with it.
When you KNOW you have completed adding all items, feats, or spells from a source, double check what you've done with the DnD Index. If you have gotten them all, go edit the source and check off that that class of thing is done for that source. This will remove that source from the picklist of sources on the edit thing page. It will also mark it as complete on the sources index for that thing. This check box was added so I could monitor my progress and to clean up those picklists, as they were getting too long and unweildy.
The Source Description is used just to describe the source book. It can be anything including the back cover text or just a quick description.
The OGL Copyright Notice Section Line is used for all sources' copyright notice. For all sources, this line looks like "<i>Ghostwalk</i> Copyright 2003, Wizards of the Coast, Inc.; Monte Cook and Sean K Reynolds". This section is VITALLY important. You can push the boundries of copyright excerpts farther if you credit your source. It is also displayed on the Copyright Notice link for the site. This allows for compliance with the OGL. Not doing this would cause serious trouble as well. Again, the format is "italics book title, copyright year, Publishing company; any authors if specially noted."
Domain / Level Groups
Level groups is just a fancy way of saying caster class. Domains are domains. If you need a new class spell list or a new domain, this is where you go to add it. When you create a class or domain, you need to give it a unqiue name and tell it how many levels it goes up to. It is very difficult to delete or correct this should you get it wrong, so double check twice. If it is a domain, mark the domain box, if not, check the Normal box.
Domains will gain a box for the power description, please fill this in. You can also type the spells that are in the domain into a set of boxes, one for each spell. Type the name in exactly as it is found in the database and it will add that spell to that level in the domain.
For classes, you get a different way to add spells, you pick the level and type spells comma separated (if a spell has a comma in it, you'll need to go to that spell.) Keep picking levels until you have all the spell lists in. If any spells failed, either work on your spelling or check to see if it really exists yet.
For both naming boxes, use "Greater Invisibility" rather than "Invisibility, Greater" styles of the names.
Source Copyright: System Reference Document Copyright 2000-2003, Wizards of the Coast, Inc.; Authors Jonathan Tweet, Monte Cook, Skip Williams, Rich Baker, Andy Collins, David Noonan, Rich Redman, Bruce R. Cordell, John D. Rateliff, Thomas Reid, James Wyatt, based on original material by E. Gary Gygax and Dave Arneson.
The Open content displayed above has been reproduced with permission from the copyright holder.