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Old 08-10-2019, 10:25 PM   #11
Michael Thayne
 
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Default Re: First virtual DFRPG session using MapTool

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Originally Posted by Dalin View Post
Roll20 is the one I gave the least attention to. I don't remember why anymore. I know a lot of friends who play D&D regularly with it and love it. I think I couldn't get a sense of how well it handled GURPS. I'm curious what you like about it.

I'm also curious about how it handles close combat. In MapTool, you can move tokens on top of each other, and it understands that some attacks have a range of zero (requiring you to share the hex with your target) and, conversely, that other attacks are unavailable at range zero. In this sense, it was better than tabletop where it's always a pain in the butt to have more than one mini trying to share a spot. On the downside, it can be hard to select the right token when they're overlapping, so we sometimes have to fiddle with it to move one of them out of the hex.
I actually just realized after posting this that Roll20 lets you temporarily disable the snap-to-hex feature by holding the Alt key. This is useful because I rather like having tokens straddle hex boundaries to represent close combat.
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Old 08-11-2019, 11:50 PM   #12
Mark Skarr
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Default Re: First virtual DFRPG session using MapTool

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Thank you, Mark, for that detailed review (and all the screenshots). I have a much better idea of how it works now. I've sent a link to this thread to the other key players who playtested MT with me. My brother and I may want to get TS anyway even if we don't use it for RPGs. We love some board games and card games too!
No problem, if you have other questions, I'll be happy to answer and help out.
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Old 08-12-2019, 07:25 AM   #13
robertsconley
 
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Default Re: First virtual DFRPG session using MapTool

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I did minimal prep, but it still took quite a while to input basic stats for the PCs and foes. Still learning my way through the interface and figuring out what a good workflow is.
I don't recommend doing this as a referee. Players, yes, have a decent automated character sheet for them if they want to take the time typing it in. But keep in mind VTTs can be run in this regard the same way as face to face. With notes or character cards sitting by your side as a reference.

If you want an on-screen reference then scan what you normally use for face to face.

The only time I use the automated character sheets as a referee is when they are provided as part of a database resource like the D&D 5th edition monster manual. Then it is become a time savers as a I copy and paste, or duplicate and modify a lot faster than I can with face to face.

If you want to do this, then focus first on building up your own database. Anything unique keep doing it like you to do for face to face and focus on things you will use over and over again. Like the list of DF monsters, NPC templates, and so on.
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Old 08-12-2019, 11:19 AM   #14
Mark Skarr
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Default Re: First virtual DFRPG session using MapTool

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Originally Posted by robertsconley View Post
I don't recommend doing this as a referee. Players, yes, have a decent automated character sheet for them if they want to take the time typing it in. But keep in mind VTTs can be run in this regard the same way as face to face. With notes or character cards sitting by your side as a reference.
I agree. I'm running two monitors. I have TTS up on my main, and everything else up on monitor two. If the need arises, I can bring over any of my Win10 Tablets and have additional information there.

If there is a monster I'm going to be using a lot of, I'll probably copy their statblock to an index card in TTS, so I can reference it there. Otherwise, I leave it in the book and just have the book open to the correct page on monitor two.

As my players have good firewalling skills, I can also just copy the statblock into the figure description in TTS, and adjust it on the fly as they're fighting them.
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Old 08-12-2019, 09:59 PM   #15
Spartan506
 
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Default Re: First virtual DFRPG session using MapTool

I’ve used Roll20 with dynamic lighting. It’s pretty cool. No automation; players roll and we know what they need to roll under. I’ve used it in lieu of minis (and because we have one remote player). Sometimes it slows things down because either I am, or one of the players is, constantly moving and rotating tokens. And why the screen can’t remain centered on one token as it moves is beyond me. A lot of moving and scrolling. But dynamic lighting is very helpful for line of sight, when monsters notice players with light sources, etc. It takes a bit of prep work but that can, in and of itself, be enjoyable.

I ran Grave of the Pirate Queen (1 long session) and a modified version of Grakhirt’s Lair from Dungeon Magazine Vol. 1 (2 sessions). Next is the Forbidden Caverns of Archaia.

Last edited by Spartan506; 08-12-2019 at 10:02 PM.
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Old 08-16-2019, 11:49 AM   #16
Bruno
 
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Default Re: First virtual DFRPG session using MapTool

I generally use automated functions for NPCs and when I play my own PCs. We don't use a tightly-bound framework, so the other players can do as they wish.

I rely heavily on the automation because Maptools lets me keep a library of pre-configured tokens. Once you've set up one lizard-man warrior, you've set up all your lizard-man warriors, really, so the effort is diffused every time I use another lizard-man warrior (or acid spider, or crushroom, or other stock foe).

I have some brain damage so I have some problems with certain kinds of thinking done quickly; even light automation makes it a lot easier for me [1]. And on the other claw I'm a programmer (and very familiar with Maptools' quirky macro language), so customizing automation to suit my needs is a fun hobby that happens to have a beneficial result, not an additional chore.

The gripping hand is that your millage will vary based on your own strengths and weaknesses and what systems you already have set up.

[1] Because of this, I use it even when I'm playing face-to-face and nobody can see my screen. Push button, be presented with combat options, receive results is a lot smoother for everyone else than watching me struggle to Numberzzz.
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