Game: Character Record Folio
Publisher: Green Ronin
Review Dated: 22nd, August 2003
Reviewer’s Rating: 7/10 [ Good ]
Total Score: 7
Average Score: 7.00
There’s some subtle clues on the front of Character Record Folio that the d20 product one to consider. The “Now 3.5 Updated!” is a pretty good clue, even the Green Ronin logo is a fair guarantee of quality but perhaps the biggest clue is the Origins Award Winner badge. Actually, since we were supposed to be listing the subtle clues I’m going to mention the white bar on the front of the otherwise colourful and illustrative front cover. The white stripe is there for you to scribble your character name’s on.
The Character Record Folio is a treat; it’s a luxury for both you and your character. On one hand paying US$ 4.50 for the Record Folio when a scrap of paper will do seems expensive. On the other hand the buzz of having your own 15-paged book at the end of the campaign, or simply the touch of professionalism the folio adds is well worth paying US$ 4.50 for. Who wants their heroic character to be consigned to a scrap of paper anyway?
The folio’s covers are of fairly decent card stock. I don’t think I’d want to face a wasp without rolling the mini-book up and I’m not going to do that but the folio easily stands up by itself if you balance it on the bottom edge. If you’re paying for the folio because it’ll last longer than a photocopied character sheet then you shouldn’t be disappointed.
The inside covers aren’t for writing on, they’re packed with rule summaries in the same way a GM’s screen might be. The front inside cover has the template for level advancement; when feats are due, what the BAB will be and when you’re due an ability increase. You’ve action roll modifiers; the bonus for hitting a prone target, the penalty for trying to hit someone while dazzled, etc. There’s a similar chart for Armour Class. This is all handy. Filling in the gaps is an exchange chart for money; showing how much coppers cost in comparison to gold, and I don’t really see a need for this, the maths couldn’t be easier. There’s an encumbrance chart at the very bottom of the page, working out the light, medium and heavy load values for different strength scores.
The back inside cover is one long list of weapons, mainly melee but with some ranged weapons too. You’ve the cost, the type of damage as well as the typical damage dice, threat range, range increments and weight.
As you’d expect, the very first page is the core of the character sheet: name, class, race, etc and then down to the abilities, saves, hit points and combat values. That’s all and this ensures plenty of space to write the numbers, no squinting and finding a razor sharp pencil lead simply to update this character sheet.
Skills and feats are over the page, they’re followed by another and more detailed section to describe the character and a space to draw the hero. Below the description area you’ll find mini character sheets for mounts, animal companions or familiars.
There are pages for tracking magical equipment and whereabouts it is worn, an advancement tracker to record your XP and which feats you gained when, plenty of room to record your loot and then a full page for psionics. Spells Known actually follow psionics, it’s not often that happens, and the spell section takes up a few pages. There are mini-character sheets for numerous cohorts and followers (which work best if those stats aren’t GM eyes only), the list of contacts appeals to story gamers like me rather more than the adventure log boxes do but the Character Record Folio is wise to include both. There’s a whole page for miscellaneous notes and since the folio uses the d20 logo on the cover there’s the requirement to include the OGL legal foo too but squeezed along side this is a section to record your most heroic crunchy bits.
The Character Record Folio is a luxury but it’s not an outlandish luxury, it’s the sort of product that makes you think “I want this” and you can quickly follow up with “And I need this because…” in a way that some of the more obscure rules supplements can’t do.