I’d assume Discord would be the go to for chat. Curious how you all go about that, with in-game vs out-of-character chat, etc. I’ve never played an on-line session before, always been a strictly pen-n-paper type.
Also, how do you do die rolls? Show character sheets? Etc.
I was thinking, on the free side of all of this, Google Docs could be used to share the character sheets and what not. But I’m still stumped on showing die rolls for everyone.
This is just curiosity for me. I’m using Shmeppy as a replacement for tabletop maps by having the map on a large TV for all the players to see, using actual laser pointers. haha
Rolz.org handles any dice mechanic including macros. The dice rolls show up on the chat client (which we don’t chat on). Our dice mechanic is NOT d20 based so I empathize with PbtA. The days work fine.
Rolz also has a wiki where we store persona sheets, artifacts and referee personas. The wiki uses a rudimentary markdown that includes images and links.
I am following about 30 VTTs under active development. I am very familiar with the following ones: roll20 (sandbox script writing), FVTT (pro dev and anti user), tableplop, battletopp, RPTools (neat scripting language, and best overall), standard action, owlbear rodeo… So much awesome work going on.
Shmeppy plus rolz beats them all.
Like many here we desire a shmeppy aesthetic applied to dice rolling and journaling.
So for discord, I use the tool DiceParser. It is a simple extension I found and have on the discord. Personally, I use my dice that I own but some of my players don’t have dice so this is a substitute more for them.
I am not in favour of ‘advertising’ for certain services but to me https://meet.jit.si/ has ticked all the boxes. Free, no zoom one-hour-limit-scheisse etc, browser based and hella simple to get up and running (send a link click - done!), simple to send ‘secret messages’ (point&click, no syntax wa-wa) and it takes less bandwidth than zoom and skype. Remember: convenience is king, despite age, and focus loss to fluff is game ‘loss’
Then we have a circle of trust. We trust each other being grown ups and hence we trust each other with dice.
Find no real need for ‘on-line character sheets’, it is just another thing on the screen that scatters attention and lose us pace (though, maybe it works with big screens, instead of a single 13" road warrior)
Sharing handouts with google docs link in the chat. Sure, a little prep, but then again.
The only thing I really miss is actually an r20 feature - I miss the dice bouncing around on the screen/over the map. It certainly adds a strong feeling of ‘togetherness’ when your friends sit on the other side of the Atlantic .
Jitzi is great. Totally agree. Zoom has removed most of the limitations you listed. Jitzi is much closer to my open source heart as well.
Shmeppy is one part of the tool set. It is the fastest and most efficient of all the mappy appies out there. Our group loves it! We also love sharing dice rolls. Watching your virtual buddy’s dramatic dice dance is soooo exciting.
We are using Shmeppy, rolz and Zoom. I have reviewed many many full service VTTs. Shmeppy is the fastest and most fun for our group.
There is a new contender in the video conferencing world called Role. It is like a cross between Jitzi and Rolz and does not have a map. It looks like a natural fit for Shmeppy. However I missed the Kickstarter and I am waiting on access.
If you want to use a shared dice roller with Shmeppy I am experimenting with a shared dice roller. No map. No chat. Just shared dice rolls on the web, or phone. It is very easy to set up.
My group uses DnDBeyond and Avrae, which is convenient, but Avrae I’m increasingly not a fan of. Too fiddly. Increasingly, players are going back to the trusty shiny math rocks, which is fine by me, both as player and DM.
I’m a big fan of OneNote as the wiki/record thing. Use google docs for group-facing stuff.
Shiny math rocks! One of the things our group loves is watching each other’s rolls. Part of the excitement. The shiny randomizing rocks are good, but online we don’t get to watch-laugh-gasp-cheer along.
DNDBeyond would be great if we played DND or used discord. This is what I love about Shmeppy. It is generic, unburdened and accessible. Our group ranges in age from 20 to 60. Onboarding with discord was brutal, and we went back to zoom. Only one of our players is a technowiz, and the more windows, the less merry. LoL
I can now articulate what I am looking for: a shared generic dice roller with the design smarts of shmeppy. www.blacklich.com is very good, but the web version does not match the app version. I would be fine combining a phone and a screen. Others not so much.
Again I am looking for that ‘perfect thing’ that someone else has to create to my unclear needs and specifications.
Role: a player-in-the-front-seat solution - a ttrpg wet dream. The other day I was thinking when there would be a solution that actually centered on the player and the game and not on… yeah, whatever except that.
I would even go as far as to say that the char sheets solution is attractive. No free floating, interactive version of a paper sheet - nope - generic, indexed, neat. Like the resources idea, quick access too. Now it is just a matter of time until we can actually see it actually in the worx; a one-stop-shop that actually facilitates the game? I am a skeptic though I must say, in this case, I am intrigued =) Seems like it even might have a chance to work on a 13" road warrior.
Though, w Shmeppys low complexity and very well defined approach w jitsi (oss and encryption ftw!) - hard to beat. I understand john and why he is skeptic to pictures/maps/handouts, it doesn’t play w shmeppys design rules and when everything is taken into account - Amazon server capacity isn’t that cheap after all… No, a good wet erase mat facilitates the game, not obfuscating it. People are too keen on locking eyes with flashy features at the cost of the game. I might sound like a picky old geezer and that is because I am. Most things fade over time, just a few makes it all the way, focus on those.
Though, your dice solution very simple=attractive. Ought to bring it up with the crew. When it runs on a phone it would also work if more than one sit in front of a camera. Keep up the good work!