Within the excitement of a new D&D system release over the last few months there has been a pretty constant question of what kind of “license” Wizards of the Coast would release D&D 5E under. Will it be the Open Gaming License (OGL), something like the very restrictive license for 4E (hopefully not), or something completely different. Despite having released the D&D Basic Rules for free in PDF, these products and their contents are still protected by copyright and so this material can’t be shared for use in Fantasy Grounds at this time. Hopefully the license will allow this in future, or Smiteworks will be able to negotiate permission to use material, time will tell…
In the meantime there are 2 community developed applications that can help you get your D&D material into Fantasy Grounds for your own personal use:
1) valeros’s excellent and easy to use Basic Rules Parser: http://www.fantasygrounds.com/forums/showthread.php?21835-D-amp-D-Basic-Rules-PDF-Parser This reads the data from the freely downloadable PDFs released by Wizards: Players Rules v0.2, DM Rules v0.1, Hoard of the Dragon Queen Supplement. It even downloads the PDFs for you! IT then parses the data in the PDFs and creates spell and monster modules for direct use in Fantasy Grounds and creates various text files for use in Project Par5e (see next entry).
2) Dr Zeus’s very powerful and flexible Project Par5e application: http://www.fantasygrounds.com/forums/showthread.php?18123-Project-Par5e Taking formatted text files (either output from the D&D PDF parser or created by the user) and parsing them into Fantasy Grounds modules. This allows users to copy/enter data from various material and use the Par5e application to make FG modules. It’s well worth taking the time to get used to the app and the syntax used if you intend to make library/reference modules for the Fantasy Grounds 5E ruleset.
I’ve liked what I’ve seen of 5E so far, I’ve played a bit (really enjoyed it), read a bit and I’m very interested to see where Wizards, and third-party-publishers take it…
Having said that, for the foreseeable future Pathfinder will continue to be my main system of choice for my fantasy Role-Playing fix. Released under the OGL, the majority of the base gaming information for Pathfinder is available in the Pathfinder Reference Document (PRD) for free online: http://paizo.com/pathfinderRPG/prd/ The great thing about the OGL is that people can share material built from OGL data. Hence the reason why there are 3.5E and PFRPG data modules included with Fantasy Grounds.
There are also many community produced data modules that expand on the modules that come with Fantasy Grounds. From fully detailed Pathfinder Bestiary modules (2, 3 and 4), through extended spell lists and magic items, to more player oriented modules containing race, class and feat information. See the first 2 posts of this thread from the FG forum for these modules: http://www.fantasygrounds.com/forums/showthread.php?16074-List-of-Modules
And last, but not least, specifically for GMs there is the Pathfinder Creature Parser. Allowing GMs to copy NPC/Creature statblocks from a PDF into a text file and parse to automatically create the Fantasy Grounds NPC record, including spell lists and links. Available here: http://www.fantasygrounds.com/forums/showthread.php?20522-Pathfinder-Creature-Parser-V2-Beta-Version
Subscribe to these forum threads to receive email updates when new modules/features are added.