Keeping your role-playing game character on your iPhone

tCiMPWith the plethora of RPG dice rolling apps out there, I am sure I am not the only person who has though about keeping my character on the iPhone as well. After a quick investigation, it proved to be not as straightforward as you might imagine. Well, I have put some thought into it, and I have a few suggestions about how it could be done.

Firstly, keeping it Native

The only application that I can find that says it will keep your character for you on your iPhone is the appropriately named Character in My Pocket, or tCiMP. This app, although not perfect, is certainly a good start. It has a high level of customisation, and would probably suit a variety of systems. It looks like the basic setup is a hybrid of D&D 4th edition and 3.x edition support. It keeps track of health, XP, coinage, etc with great ease, and it’s pretty easy to get the basics of your character into the app. The application also includes a rudimentary die roller as well, which is a boon as you would have to exit then re-enter the app every time you want to roll a die.

Ultimately, tCiMP falls a bit short a bit in that you can only store one character at a time, and I have found it to be a little buggy every now and then. It still doesn’t really do the job completely of getting a character fully onto your iPhone, but it is certainly adequate. In the end, if you have a spare $2 and want to support the development to encourage more releases, I’d suggest buying it.

Emailing yourself a PDF

This is a pretty straight forward method to get the character onto your iPhone. Simply use an application like PCGen or similar, or even scan your handwritten character sheet and save to PDF and email it to yourself. One of the advantages of using a program like PCGen is that it is easier to make adjustments later on. If you are playing D&D 4th edition, you will probably have to pay a subscription to use Wizards of the Coasts character generator if that’s the path you want to take. Again, this will save as a PDF, and has the advantage that it will also print all your power/exploit cards for you as well.

Use the web

Saving your character as a Word document or Excel spreadsheet and uploading it to your Google Docs gives you almost the best of both worlds. If you spend the time to create (or find) a spreadsheet that has all the formulas already in it already, Google Docs will allow you to create and manage your character from session to session. This is probably (for the time being) the preferred version. If you want to keep the character offline and synch only when you have made changes there are apps that allow you to do that too (iSpreadsheet Free (iTunes Link) is one such example, and is, well, free…).

While non of the above examples are perfect, they offer at least a manageable means to keep your character on a mobile device.

About RupertG

RupertG has been playing roleplaying games ever since he discovered Dragon Warriors at the age of 12. Since those days he has played many different RPG's, collected not insignificant Dwarf and Tomb Kings armies for Warhammer Fantasy Battles and even worked as a games designer in the heady days of the late 90's building a CCG. Now he runs a gaming blog and is a participant in the Grand Gaming Experiment
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