Some will be horrified by the "d20 look" - don't worry, I'm already working on a very different 5e sheet with a Medieval look, and this one can be "toned down" to look more like the 5e rulebook. But I hoped this sheet would be particularly accessible to d20 gamers and newcomers, not only because of layout, but also because it's a bit of a "trainer sheet." Anyway, it uses my typical layering tricks, so requires Acrobat 6 or later to use it.
The idea of layout is quite good, but I wuuld like to custom it less modern looking by changing the style of the boxes less rectangular and the titles of the boxes more bannerlike.
I would also add the type of the ability to the ability list - it does affect the game. Also there has to be more space for abilities. The difference between D20 and ArM5 is that adventuring skills are not that important and thus there should be more Professions and Crafts rows. I would incorporate the realm lores (Dominion, Faerie, Magic and Infernal) and base organization lores (Church Lore and Order of Hermes Lore) into the ability list.
I would add an individual sheet for abiltiies (like in the sheet Decallom has made).
Also the grimoire sheet has too much redundancy due giving all stats of the spellcasting for each spell. I would rather add the boxes for casting totals for each form (or antoher sheet with this information).
The penetration total calculation for each spell would be nice (with slot for Mastery).
The notes section is too small to include both mastery options and how the sigil of the character affrects the casting total.
Bond Qualities on Familiar section is 4th edition anomality. There is no longer anything like them. The familiar box is too small. The familiar should have full sheet with space for abilities and the list of powers (which will become quite large one as the magus enchants the bond). In this aspect (the lack of space for actual notes) you have copied the D20 sheet very well
I would also add the calculations for Certamen totals (Resistance, Weakening, Base Attack, Base Defence) to the sheet.
Well, first off, I will reiterate that I am working on a "very not-d20" ArM5 sheet, and even this one can be made to look a lot more "traditional," so keep that in mind.
As far as Abilities are concerned, I'm well aware of their importance and room requirements. (I myself am not coming from d20 - I've been playing Ars since Third Edition - I just thought a sheet for such people would be good for the game.) That said, the number of "slots" for skills on this sheet is not significantly different from most previous ArM sheets I'm familiar with. I have consistently run out of room for abilities for my magi characters by 10 years into their career, if not sooner, and started adding more to the "Notes" section.
That's really about the only option, and certainly one I'll consider. I think most of us are reticent to use all the room one would really need for advanced characters' skills. I'm not familiar with "the sheet Decallom has made"; could you post a link to it?
Again, one of my goals was to make a sheet accessible to newcomers, so the "redundancy" (although I'm not sure there's really much of it) is intended. In this case it's supposed to help you figure out what modifiers modify your casting total. The casting totals for each form and Penetration totals are good ideas, and would likely help the same folks. I think I'm headed for another one of my infamous 6-page character sheets.
Good catch. Got caught up in converting and didn't even think about that, thanks. There may well be other anomalies which need to be excised.
Uh, thanks. I don't think I can take "credit" for that, and you might as well say I've "copied the last 20 Ars Magica sheets very well," since those sheets haven't had any more room. Essentially, though, you're right, familiars really need their own sheet, just like covenants.
I like the sheet, and while some may not due to a d20-ness to them, it's not really all that different from the one on this very website. The abilities being listed is nice for new players who may forget the odd skill (though given its importance, I might list Profession: Scribe in the magus skills independently). I take it supernatural abilities are meant for the blanks down at the bottom of the skill list, so that's covered.
I'm not too hung up on the font choice, personally. I mean, going completely period and putting in marganalia would be lovely, but might be a little over the top. But overall I like it very much (though if you were to make the next iteration fillable I'd do backflips out of sheer joy).
I've made a number of character sheets in Illustrator (though none yet for Ars Magica) and have been wanting to make sheets in Acrobat. Would you know of any good tutorials online and/or any good books for it?
But it's a good sheet. I've used a number of your character sheets before (including the d20 one when that's the only game the Ref and I could get people to play -- thank they've come around, even though our D&D game was anything but typical D&D), so I'd just like to say thanks for the years of giving out cool stuff.
really I can't vote too favourably until the post-D20 version appears...
My other problem is that, basically, I don't use paper character sheets myself. (That is, I do use paper in-game, but I generate and print the data for sheets electronically, either in a home-grown spreadsheet, or in MetaCreator.)
Overall I think the sheet is generally clean and useful, generally user-friendly. That being said, I really, really like the feel of your 4th edition sheets -- once I found them I never used anything else! These sheets make me think "Useful"; the older sheets made me think "Magical".
I like the layout, but not the modern look. Replace the straight lines & block text with something more medieval-feeling, and they'd be great.
I concur that there needs to be more space for abilities, and that the Realm Lores, Organization Lores, and Profession: Scribe should be printed on the list.
To make space for the abilities, perhaps extend the abilities column almost all the way to the top of the page. In my experience, the blank space left for a "portrait" ends up as wasted space. You could make more space for the other info by making the abilities column narrower, getting rid of some of the empty space between the name of the ability and the first column.
One nitpick: You only have a space for the warping score, not warping points.
Seriously, though, you guys are taking the modern thing harder than I thought. I really do plan a more "traditional" version and was hoping any votes would keep in mind the stated goal of a newbie, d20-looking sheet...
In other words, I think the "useful" versus "magical" distinction is pretty fair, and I do fully intend to get back to "magical."
Anyway, re: the nitpicks. I actually did the damage box turn off by design, but now I can see where that might not have been a good idea. Namely, I was hoping some enterprising individual would end up making a PDF form out of this (since it's under a CC license), and they'd need the lines and the check boxes out of the way. One click and they're gone. But I guess some folks might want the lines out of the way to simply write in by hand...in which case they'd still need the check boxes, huh? I can just put them in a separate layer.
On the warping front, I'm used to just writing it like in the ArM books: 1(3) or what have you; that's why there's only one spot. I could put in two.
I guess I could move the portrait box. In our games, it's anathema to not use one...but I do resist the idea of a separate page for abilities.
Out of curiosity, anyone using my 4th ed sheets...did you like the different font variants?
Finally, is 6 pages too long for a character sheet? I guess I'm think 4 pages like my D&D sheet and then two pages additional for magi.
I think putting the boxes on their own layer is a great way to go. I used your fourth ed character sheets as well during the 5th ed playtest and liked them quite a bit. I really like the ability to choose from a few fonts as well. It'd be very cool to use a font appropriate to the area your character is from.
As for size, I like to have as much detail as possible on the character sheet. More pages is fine, as it ensures enough room to actually write everything down.
My only nitpick at this point is that I wouldn't mind a couple more lines for virtues, perhaps by removing a few from flaws (as flaws are more limited in the number you may take -- I think it maxes out at 7 or 8 rather than 10 for virtues -- plus any for social status, the Gift, and the like).
Still, very cool stuff. Always has been. Personally, I don't mind if the character sheet is a bit D&D-like, as long as I can find everything I'm looking for. Fonts and box styles are wonderful, but the info has to come first.
On a second, and more thorough, look over, I have one more criticism: I don't like the explicit list of abilities. It strikes me as unnecessary. It will be the rare character indeed with a score in every ability, and the way it's done now seems a bit... cluttered.
I find the list of Abilities handy, as it has them in alphabetical order, but since you can clear it completely, it doesn't have an impact on people who don't like it. I think one box for Virtues and Flaws would work out well, given either no lines or somewhere around 15 spaces.