Hello,  I am starting up a Dungeon World campaign using roll20, and it’s my first time with both.

Hello,  I am starting up a Dungeon World campaign using roll20, and it’s my first time with both.

Hello,  I am starting up a Dungeon World campaign using roll20, and it’s my first time with both.    I though it would be good to start a discussion about how this game, and this tool set fit together, since I have been chewing on it for a few weeks now, and still have plenty of questions.

 My first impression with roll20 after playing with it for an hour or two, is that it specializes on getting maps and tokens to work well together. Yay! battlemat online!  This is great and all, but my impression of DW, is that it is not about the maps and tokens, but they can be used if we want.

So I am thinking how can I use roll20 to make our DW campaign better then skype and google docs?

1) maps.  once we draw them, we can import them and draw on the maps while playing.  Can players create maps in roll20?  or only the GM?  I love the idea of having players drawing some maps on the fly, which is easy in tabletop games.

2) images.  Images are worth a thousand words.  I have found some great pictures of gnolls which filled me with an Epiphany.  Not only did I want monster pictures, but I wanted the monsters to be in the correct location.   Where can I get good fantasy location images?  In the last thirty years there have been innumerable fantasy images created.  How can I find them and gather them for my game?  Ideally locations without characters… google searches so far have shown a great time sink opportunity here, but I have not found the ruined keep setting I was thinking of.

3) sounds.  So who wants to add a creaking door?  a barking dog?  The splash sound as your signature weapon gets thrown overboard?  I know roll20 allows making playlists, for music, but what about sound effects?   Does anyone have a good way to collect sound effects for Roll20?  does roll20 allow for quick searches of saved sound files?

4) what else?  Moving from face 2 face gaming, into a remote desktop environment must have some great changes I just have not thought of yet.  Anyone want to share their ideas?

Thanks for any comments.

15 thoughts on “Hello,  I am starting up a Dungeon World campaign using roll20, and it’s my first time with both.”

  1. Players can also draw in roll20 just as the GM can unless the feature is turned off, I believe.

    I use websites for ambient music but I don’t bother with actual sound effects. Theatre of the mind! Though, I could see how a sudden door closing could surprise players without you saying what happens! That sounds pretty cool. I just think it would slow down my momentum unless there was a ready soundboard or something.

  2. Roll20 quite easy to work with as a player though with Dungeon World is a lot of improvised stuff at times so a map of the area will be better at times than a accurate tactical map so you can probably just use simple marks for monsters.

    Audio, try tabletop audio for ambient stuff – http://tabletopaudio.com

    Best thing I’d say is goto sites like Role Playing Public Radio’s actual plays ( http://actualplay.roleplayingpublicradio.com ) to see the Dungeon World game on the flow & any tips on running it (though think they forgot the xp addition on 6-). Good luck & happy to join if the schedule works if you’re needing players.

  3. I have run a few games of Dungeon World on roll20, and my advice is this:

    * Make sure to launch the game in roll20 “via Google Hangouts” rather than using the native roll20 client. The audio experience is way better in G+H.

    * For the most part, I use the roll20 virtual table simply to roll dice and display maps (and occasionally click-ping on them).  That’s it.  Don’t bother with the rest of the stuff — you’ll be surprised how much you can do by just distributing PDFs of the playbooks and basic/advanced moves list to your players, and not dicking around with dials and levers while you play.

  4. We play on Roll20; it makes it really easy to do the rolls; I also love having character portraits for each character and character bios and stats on the characters and handouts tab. 

    We tend to use Teamspeak instead of their Hangouts interface even though that works really well; we we have pictures of our characters instead.

    Our GM pretty much makes up the maps and campaign on the fly, so being able to draw on the virtual table is pretty awesome.  I know Dungeon World is all about theater of the mind; but it does help a lot to draw maps and situate our characters sometimes, especially if you gasp split the party.

  5. Damian Jankowski   I like the ambient music… and it made me wonder about more setting sounds.   My wife is involved in Theater production, and people sitting at sound boards with 300 sound effects lined up is something they do with tablets now… so it should be easy to set up with roll20.  the sounds of a rive, or a cave, or a dinosaur crashing through the woods.  These things should be easy to figure out.  Anyone done that yet?

  6. Darren Priddy  Hello,   That roleplayingpublicradio thing is interesting… but it is voice only.  When I bring my RPG online, I want more out of it then a conference call.  I want to bring everyone into the story.  I have never been on a conference call where all attendees were attentive through the whole thing.   So I want to have more that I can bring to the “table” than voice.   

    I was not able to find any links to their tips on running DW.

  7. timothy Lewis well the tips I find while listening to the games is not only getting the flow or better rules understood (if I find it confusing on how it’s written) as well as how the gm handles certain situations or classes. With both the Role Playing Public Radio podcasts & their actual play recordings are done locally & recorded but seen other games with google+ or roll20 with both audio & webcams where all are engaged in the story, just takes a while to get used to.

  8. timothy Lewis As a Roll20 Developer, I’ve played a fair amount of Dungeon World via the app (http://www.twitch.tv/roll20app/profile/pastBroadcasts), and I’ve had sessions I loved and those that never got “moving.”  

    One advantage Roll20 has is the way it allows you to prep for a game– you can have an elaborate setup for an encounter be hidden for a reveal, unlike what you might be able to build on your living room table.  If you’re willing to have more encounters prepped than you’re going to use– meaning you don’t railroad players to GO TO THIS MAP I SPENT TIME SETTING UP, but instead have “track” laid in a few different directions– the effect is pretty excellent.

    Beyond that, I’ve been thinking about ways to really push the “Bonds” aspect of Dungeon World next time I play… in one of my sessions a fellow player had macro’d their bonds to display in chat related to when he was making relevant rolls. It was both amusing AND a spirited brandishing of the rule set that I’d like to encourage in future games.

  9. Al Gordon agreed, the Call of Cthulhu RPG games I play in are quite simple in what’s needed on Roll20. If the players are confused on placement, they can write on the maps & the gm often puts some things in the journal section for handouts (clues of newspaper clippings, letters, photos, etc.) the players can look at anytime & another fun feature to not have the gm have to be constantly pulling up common images. Really easy overall to work with Roll20.

  10. Al Gordon  this company seems to have one of the things I was looking for.  Now I just need to figure out how to import these files into Roll20.  Thanks so much?

     Also my wife gave me this link for some sound effects: http://www.soundjay.com/   has 16 different door closings, but no barking dogs….

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