Lesson #2: PCC file calling

By Professor Chris Chandler (Barak) and Professor Andrew McDougall (Tir Gwaith).

File(s) Covered: *.pcc (File calling)

Tags used:

DEITY , DOMAIN , SPELL , RACE , TEMPLATE , FEAT , SKILL , LANGUAGE , CLASS , COMPANIONMOD , KIT , EQUIPMOD , EQUIPMENT , WEAPONPROF , PCC , INCLUDE , EXCLUDE , #


Basic File type calls

Ok, this part is going to go fast. If you want to add an object (coding term for how PCGen handles things), such as a Race, to your campaign, it needs to be in the correct LST file type to load correctly. To do this, you create that object in a LST file, and reference the file by one of the tags. Valid file types are, and I'm grouping them by file types that tend to go together (interact with others regularly in the same grouping): DEITY, DOMAIN, SPELL, RACE, TEMPLATE, FEAT, SKILL, LANGUAGE, CLASS, COMPANIONMOD, KIT, EQUIPMOD, EQUIPMENT, and WEAPONPROF

There can only be one of these tags per line, but one can have more than one line with the same reference (we tend to break monsters and equipment down into more than one file for official releases, so we often will have more than one EQUIPMENT or RACE line in the same campaign. All of these tags call LST files, each of which follow their own format and tags that can be used in them. We will get to that later.

For example, one of the lines for my classes is "CLASS:mystuffclassesbase.lst". Another one (entered on a new line) is "CLASS:mystuffclassesprestige.lst". My feat file is "FEAT:mystufffeats.lst".

Notice something about all the filenames I've chosen for the different types of data? They all start with "mystuff". This is the common naming convention and just makes it easy to determine at a glance what files belong together with what PCC.

So now the PCC file looks like this (and is complete; we are building on lesson #1 here.):

-------------------------------
CAMPAIGN:My Stuff
GAMEMODE:3e
RANK:1
TYPE:PCGenLstMonkey.Campaign Setting.My World
SOURCELONG:PCGenLstMonkey SOURCESHORT:PCGLM
SOURCEWEB:http://www.mystuffcampaign.com
ISOGL:YES
COPYRIGHT:PCGenLstMonkey Copyright 2003
INFOTEXT:This data set contains all the information necessary to
create a character for the mystuff campaign world.
DEITY:mystuffdeities.lst
FEAT:mystufffeats.lst
TEMPLATE:mystufftemplates.lst
CLASS:mystuffclassesbase.lst
CLASS:mystuffclassesprestige.lst
DOMAIN:mystuffdomains.lst
LANGUAGE:mystufflanguages.lst
RACE:mystuffraces.lst
SKILL:mystuffskills.lst
SPELL:mystuffspells.lst
KIT:mystuffkits.lst
COMPANIONMOD:mystuffkits.lst
EQUIPMOD:mystuffequipmodsmundane.lst
EQUIPMOD:mystuffequipmodsmagical.lst
EQUIPMENT:mystuffequip.lst
WEAPONPROF:mystuffweaponprofs.lst
-------------------------------

That is ALL you need to include in a Campaign file to have objects load, so long as the files themselves exist and there isn't anything wrong with the files themselves (bad LST format, weird character, etc.). Note that you do not need all of those type. Several sources may only have two or three of them.

What we are going to go into now is some slightly more advanced items that will help with your custom datasets...


PCC: calling other PCGen Campaign Configuration files.

Let's say I want to have everything in the SRD, but I don't want to select the SRD every time on the sources screen. I and my players want to just load MyCampaign. To do this I can use a PCC tag in the mystuff.pcc. This works just like any of the other File Type loading tags, but it will load EVERYTHING from a given PCC file.

So I can load the complete SRD and my own stuff and I could do it just by clicking on MyCampaign and loading that. All the info in the SRD would be included! More specifically, what is mentioned in the PCC I call is loaded as if it were listed in the mystuff.pcc...

Since PCC's tend to be in the same folder as their files, and each campaign in its own folder, I've held this one off till after the calling from other directories, since you need that first. So, I need to know where the PCC in question is. In this case, it is (PCgenHome}/data/d20ogl/srd/srd.pcc. So I'm going to add PCC:@/data/d20ogl/srd/srd.pcc

The "@" character when used in a PCC file will be replaced when the program goes looking for the file by the path you have set in the preferences as the PCGen home directory.

You may also load a PCC using the full path/filename (useful if you keep your sources in places other than the normal PCGen path) such as PCC:C:/pcgen/data/d20ogl/srd/srd.pcc.


LSTEXCLUDE: removing a file completely.

I want to use the SRD materials but I have invented my own feats and wish to use them and *not* have the ones from the SRD available. I can use the LSTEXCLUDE tag to prevent them from being loaded. This tag will prevent the named files from being loaded even if they are referenced in another PCC that you have chosen to include. For this to work properly, it must come before any PCC listings to take effect in them.

So, for mystuff.pcc I will insert "LSTEXCLUDE:srdfeats.lst" on a line prior to my PCC call from the last section.


INCLUDE/EXCLUDE: loading only parts of files

Thinking about it some more I realize that I want to include a couple of bits from some other data sets. While I could re-enter them, why go to all that trouble. Looking through my stuff, I want to include the races from FFG's Mythic Races... but looking at them, I don't particularly like the Fairy race, nor the Anaema (that just sounds too close to something else :P) and would like to leave them out.

This is what we use the EXCLUDE tag for.  So I enter another race tag for that file, but on the end I put "|(EXCLUDE:Fairy|Anaema)". The complete entry reads:

RACE:@/data/d20ogl/fantasyflightgames/legendsandlairs/mythicraces/mythicracesraces.lst| (EXCLUDE:Fairy|Anaema)

On that same note, I really like the Hide Spell metamagic feat from Sword and Sorcery Studios book Relics and Rituals, but I don't want to include any of the other feats. To do this I'll use the INCLUDE tag. I enter another feat tag, and at the end I put "|(INCLUDE:Hide Spell)". The complete line would read:

FEAT:@/data/d20ogl/swordandsorcerystudios/scarredlands/relicsrituals/relicsritualsfeats.lst| (INCLUDE:Hide Spell)


#: Comments

Some PCC files can be complicated and might need some explanation for how things are being done or you may just wish to use have some reminders of how you've organized the file.  For that you enter a comment. A comment is indicated by using the "#" character as the first character on the line, followed by any text you wish to enter for the comment.

I think I'll just pop a note into the PCC indicating source material that is not from my setting. "# Non My Campaign setting files".

Our PCC file now looks like this:

-------------------------------
CAMPAIGN:My Stuff
GAMEMODE:3e
RANK:1
TYPE:PCGenLstMonkey.Campaign Setting.My World
SOURCELONG:PCGenLstMonkey SOURCESHORT:PCGLM
SOURCEWEB:http://www.mystuffcampaign.com
ISOGL:YES
COPYRIGHT:PCGenLstMonkey Copyright 2003
INFOTEXT:This data set contains all the information necessary to
create a character for the mystuff campaign world.
DEITY:mystuffdeities.lst
FEAT:mystufffeats.lst
TEMPLATE:mystufftemplates.lst
CLASS:mystuffclassesbase.lst
CLASS:mystuffclassesprestige.lst
DOMAIN:mystuffdomains.lst
LANGUAGE:mystufflanguages.lst
RACE:mystuffraces.lst
SKILL:mystuffskills.lst
SPELL:mystuffspells.lst
KIT:mystuffkits.lst
COMPANIONMOD:mystuffkits.lst
EQUIPMOD:mystuffequipmodsmundane.lst
EQUIPMOD:mystuffequipmodsmagical.lst
EQUIPMENT:mystuffequip.lst
WEAPONPROF:mystuffweaponprofs.lst
# Non My Campaign setting files
LSTEXCLUDE:srdfeats.lst
PCC:@/data/d20ogl/srd/srd.pcc
RACE:@/data/d20ogl/fantasyflightgames/legendsandlairs/mythicraces/myth
icracesraces.lst|(EXCLUDE:Fairy|Anaema)
FEAT:@/data/d20ogl/swordandsorcerystudios/scarredlands/relicsrituals/r
elicsritualsfeats.lst|(INCLUDE:Hide Spell)
-------------------------------

Barak, Tir Gwaith
LST Chimps