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Old 05-29-2021, 07:44 AM   #1
Shimmin Beg
 
Join Date: Nov 2020
Default Custom templates not available to pick

EDIT: Problem now solved; solution below

I'm trying to create a character with Shapeshifting (Alternate Form). Based on advice elsewhere on the forums, I created the alternate form as a new character and saved it as a GDF. However, it does not show up on the list of templates when I try to add templates to a character.

I've already tried closing and reopening the character, and GCA itself. The files should all be up to date.

Possibilities that spring to mind:
  1. Is it the save location of the GDF? GCA doesn't seem to indicate where it keeps templates, so I don't know where to look.
  2. Is it a validation issue? Three items failed compliance (and a bunch of modifiers weren't found, but the dialogue suggests that's normal). I can't see how to address this - they were all created through the normal dialogues (no direct editing of text files) and the issues seem to be expecting %somekindoflists% but getting actual values, which is none of my doing.

The validation issues in question:
Code:
Match using BasedOn. 'Attack from Above (Brawling)' matched with system item 'Attack from Above (%Melee Combat Skill%)'
Item 'Attack from Above (Brawling)':
    tag 'nameext' failed compliance check.
    	System Value: 	%Melee Combat Skill%
    	Item Value: 	Brawling
    tag 'default' failed compliance check.
    	System Value: 	"SK:%Melee Combat SkillList%::level" - 2
    	Item Value: 	"SK:Brawling::level" - 2
    tag 'needs' failed compliance check.
    	System Value: 	SK:%Melee Combat SkillList%
    	Item Value: 	SK:Brawling

Match using BasedOn. 'Innate Attack (Burning)' matched with system item 'Innate Attack (%TypeList%)'
Item 'Innate Attack (Burning)':
    tag 'nameext' failed compliance check.
    	System Value: 	%TypeList%
    	Item Value: 	Burning
    tag 'cost' failed compliance check.
    	System Value: 	%Typealt1list%
    	Item Value: 	5/10
    tag 'mods' failed compliance check.
    	System Value: 	_Attack Enhancements, _Attack Limitations, Alternative Attack, %TypeList% Attack Enhancements, %TypeList% Attack Limitations, Innate Attack
    	Item Value: 	_Attack Enhancements, _Attack Limitations, Alternative Attack, Burning Attack Enhancements, Burning Attack Limitations, Innate Attack
    tag 'damtype' failed compliance check.
    	System Value: 	%Typealt2list%
    	Item Value: 	bu
    tag 'skillused' failed compliance check.
    	System Value: 	%examplealiaslist%
    	Item Value: 	ST:DX, SK:Brawling
Checking mods for Innate Attack (Burning) ...
      Not found. Modifier 'Melee Attack: Reach C' of Modifier Group '_Attack Limitations' : No corresponding System item was found.
      Not found. Modifier 'No Incendiary Effect' of Modifier Group '_General' : No corresponding System item was found.

Match using BasedOn. 'Innate Attack (Toxic)' matched with system item 'Innate Attack (%TypeList%)'
Item 'Innate Attack (Toxic)':
    tag 'nameext' failed compliance check.
    	System Value: 	%TypeList%
    	Item Value: 	Toxic
    tag 'cost' failed compliance check.
    	System Value: 	%Typealt1list%
    	Item Value: 	4/8
    tag 'mods' failed compliance check.
    	System Value: 	_Attack Enhancements, _Attack Limitations, Alternative Attack, %TypeList% Attack Enhancements, %TypeList% Attack Limitations, Innate Attack
    	Item Value: 	_Attack Enhancements, _Attack Limitations, Alternative Attack, Toxic Attack Enhancements, Toxic Attack Limitations, Innate Attack
    tag 'damtype' failed compliance check.
    	System Value: 	%Typealt2list%
    	Item Value: 	tox
    tag 'skillused' failed compliance check.
    	System Value: 	%examplealiaslist%
    	Item Value: 	SK:Innate Attack (Breath), ST:DX-4, SK:Innate Attack (Beam)-2, SK:Innate Attack (Breath)-2, SK:Innate Attack (Gaze)-2, SK:Innate Attack (Projectile)-2
Update:
I located the folder where GDFs are stored (C:\Program Files (x86)\GURPS Character Assistant 4\data files in my case) and copied my saved GDF into it. When I next started Gurps Character Assistant, it said I had new files available, and I was able to load the GDFs into the sources used. The templates now show up as expected. Hopefully this will help someone else out.

Last edited by Shimmin Beg; 05-29-2021 at 08:55 AM. Reason: Found solution (more detail)
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Old 05-29-2021, 10:43 AM   #2
Armin
GCA Prime
 
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Join Date: Aug 2004
Location: Portland, OR
Default Re: Custom templates not available to pick

Generally, you would save a template into your "Documents\GURPS Character Assistant 4\data files" folder.

All your *personal* files should be in Documents. You should never put your personal files in Program Files. Everything in Program Files is managed by the programs there, and the installers that work with them, and those often make changes with no regard for what a user may have added or changed.

In GCA, if you open Options, then click Change (next to the drop-down) on the Data Sets tab, you get to the Data Sets dialog. This allows you to create data sets that collect desired files into named data sets, so you can load them as desired later on.

On the left side is the Available Data files list. At the bottom of that list, if any are found, will be listed a bunch of data files in green--those are your custom data files loaded from "Documents\GURPS Character Assistant 4\data files". At top of the list, just above it, is a file open button which will let you change to a different folder for those files, in case you like to store them somewhere else.

Back on the Options dialog Data Sets tab again, you could instead click on the Change & Load Files button. That lets you change the files in the current data set (the one listed in the drop-down on Options) and re-load the data set immediately. (You can only change the current data set, not create new data sets from here.) This also has the green user-file listings at the bottom.

That is how you're supposed to access and include your personal data files.

Note that GCA5 (currently in Beta Preview, and not officially released yet) makes this somewhat easier, because it has just one dialog for managing books and libraries (what used to be called data files and data sets in GCA4). And in GCA5, if the library is currently active, it's reloaded automatically, while in GCA4 it must be reloaded by you clicking one of the Load buttons.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Shimmin Beg View Post
[*]Is it the save location of the GDF? GCA doesn't seem to indicate where it keeps templates, so I don't know where to look.
Save location. And the fact that you *must decide* to load a file. GCA never loads files that you don't tell it to, because many files include 'world' data which may be incompatible with 'standard' data. Also, many files contain extra or more advanced rules that people don't want to use.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Shimmin Beg View Post
[*]Is it a validation issue? Three items failed compliance (and a bunch of modifiers weren't found, but the dialogue suggests that's normal). I can't see how to address this - they were all created through the normal dialogues (no direct editing of text files) and the issues seem to be expecting %somekindoflists% but getting actual values, which is none of my doing.
Validation is primarily a tool for GMs to check if cheeky players may have made changes outside the intended scope. As you see, GCA flags anything that doesn't match the original material, even when the original material was set up with a 'choose an option' feature, where an exact match would make no sense at all.

Validation can be a helpful tool, but it's dumb.
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Old 05-29-2021, 12:19 PM   #3
Shimmin Beg
 
Join Date: Nov 2020
Default Re: Custom templates not available to pick

Quote:
Originally Posted by Armin View Post
Generally, you would save a template into your "Documents\GURPS Character Assistant 4\data files" folder.

All your *personal* files should be in Documents. You should never put your personal files in Program Files. Everything in Program Files is managed by the programs there, and the installers that work with them, and those often make changes with no regard for what a user may have added or changed.
Thanks. The confusion was that the default save location is "Documents\GURPS Character Assistant 4\characters" and saving a GDF here did nothing. I looked at "data files", but it was empty and nothing seemed to indicate that's where templates should go to be detected on startup. So I went with the location where other GDFs were saved.

Perhaps something could be set up so that saving as a GDF automatically suggests the correct save location for that file type?
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Old 05-29-2021, 06:05 PM   #4
Armin
GCA Prime
 
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Join Date: Aug 2004
Location: Portland, OR
Default Re: Custom templates not available to pick

Quote:
Originally Posted by Shimmin Beg View Post
Thanks. The confusion was that the default save location is "Documents\GURPS Character Assistant 4\characters" and saving a GDF here did nothing. I looked at "data files", but it was empty and nothing seemed to indicate that's where templates should go to be detected on startup. So I went with the location where other GDFs were saved.

Perhaps something could be set up so that saving as a GDF automatically suggests the correct save location for that file type?
You're welcome.

I understand that confusion, and I'm sorry that I caused it. Since GCA4 made use of Save As for that, it used the standard character save location and didn't know about special cases until after the dialog was closed.

GCA 5 doesn't use the Save As dialog to save a character as a template (it's a separate option on the File menu), and it will prompt for saves to the user's Books folder by default, rather than to the Characters folder. (Note, I just added this feature to GCA5, so it's not currently available in the Beta Preview release.)
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