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Thursday, May 9, 2013

BattleScribe: A Good List-building App for iOS

So the other day my buddy Jeremy sends me a text about this app, BattleScribe (thanks for that, dude!). I figure since I have been wanting something like ArmyBuilder on iPhone anyway, and he said it was pretty cheap (just 350yen), I'd give it a try. Well, turns out there is a free version that has ads, but includes all the features! Good stuff, good stuff.

I made a list with it just now and found it incredibly easy to use. Importing data was incredibly easy too. I Googled it through Safari ("battlescribe data files") and was able to open the file I downloaded directly with the app. All in all I think the app does all the essential stuff it needs to do. I actually think there are only about five more features I'd want the app to have.

The first is an undo button for when you accidentally delete a unit with one of the one-touch X's on the right side just where I want to put my thumb when I hold the device. If not an undo feature, a lock feature or a slide method of deleting units. Anything really, as long as I don't have to rebuild units because of such an easy-to-make mistake. The second is file conversion support. I'd love to be able to export PDFs so I can view the files on devices without the app installed. Third, I wish there were options for printing. If not from the app directly, then this could tie into being able to convert to PDFs. Fourth, sharing support for social networking sites. It'd nice to be able to share easily through my blog and I see a button for "save roster HTML," but I've tried it and don't know where it is saving to or how to access it. That could be due to my own ineptitude, though, to be fair. Fifth, I think the list viewer could be better. Zoom would be nice and so would a cleaner layout with more clearly distinguished unit upgrades.

As long as your device is charged while you're gaming, and as long as you don't want to share lists and expose your nerdiness for the whole net to see, most of those issues don't matter that much. Any other problem I have with it is actually a problem with the data reservoir, I think. Some wargear for Eldar should be combined into one category for certain Exarchs. And items like the Shining Spear Exarch's Shuriken Cannon are missing.

All in all I'd say it's way more than worth the nothing I paid for it. It's even good enough that I'm going to pay for it just to support the guys who put it together. I'll probably also send them my suggestions in the hopes that they continue to support their work.

Did you/Will you give it a try? What are your impressions?