Herolab, the excellent character generation and combat management software package from Lone Wolf Development just added an authoring kit. The kit allows users to add their own data files (ie game systems) without having to buy a download from Lone Wolf.
It does not take a genius to realize this release is all about “4th Edition Dungeons and Dragons.” The “Authoring Kit” page even uses 4E as an example of what users can build! The reasoning behind the move is quite sound, WOTC is unlikely to license the game rules to a company in direct competition with their “D&D Insider” subscription service and Lone Wolf cannot sell the game data for “Herolab” without a license (assuming they want to sign the dreaded GSL before it is revised).
Nothing, however, prevents Lone Wolf from making it easy to add 4E rules to their software package for home use. Well done, Herolab! A little competition might rattle Wizard’s cage and encourage some movement towards a less draconian licensing model.
I have “Herolab,” so I will update it and give a brief report about the authoring kit and its merits (or defects) this weekend.
Trask, The Last Tyromancer