Time to think about a plan B

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by sd8k, Mar 12, 2020.

  1. sd8k

    sd8k Level 0 Character

    I feel we have a responsibility to our players to make sure they have the best possible GaryCon experience.

    There have been a lot of attendees cancelling (both players and DMs).

    I'd like to encourage my fellow DMs to take a look at the virtual tools out there and take a little time to get familiar.

    There is of course Roll 20 https://roll20.net/

    I am using Discord and have set up a server for the players who signed up for the games. https://discordapp.com/

    There is a white board application that is free where you can invite others and upload PDF of maps and handouts. https://awwapp.com/

    Once the spaces are created you can use the Tabletop communication link to send the info to your players. We can be a calming presence during all this chaos.

    Also tabletop has the Virtual GaryCon site set up: https://tabletop.events/conventions/gary-con-xii-virtual-tabletop-gaming
    Maybe we can get seats transfer over if games need to go virtual.

    I mean heck we always have to deal with the world going sideways.. at least this time its not the PCs fault HA!
    Poindexter, JediSoth and Vort like this.
  2. JediSoth

    JediSoth Troubadour

    I'm looking into ways to running some of my games virtually. Not at the same times they were scheduled, of course (I'm going to save some of that vacation time, just in case...).

    My main challenge is two-fold. My games require special dice since I'm using FFG's Genesys system. FFG's Star Wars dice (for Edge of the Empire, etc.) will work fine. As I understand it, I'd have to subscribe to Roll20 to get a dice roller that supports that. I heard Discord supports it, but I use it so infrequently, I failed to install it and Authenticator on my new phone before I wiped the old one, so I may be locked out of my account now (and I'm loath to use my business e-mail to create a new Discord account). There used to be a GoogleHangouts app that supported those dice, too, but I don't even know if GoogleHangouts is a Thing anymore. There's a die roller app, but it costs money, and I don't think my players should have to pay to be able to roll dice for my games.
  3. Vort

    Vort Level 0 Character

    Asked a friend who plays FFG Star Wars. He first suggested using Discord as the best free solution, the app as next best, and then there's always the free option of using regular dice and the lookup table. I think Google Hangouts is still fully operational.
    sd8k likes this.
  4. JediSoth

    JediSoth Troubadour

    I discovered today that since I so rarely use Discord, I never installed it on my new phone. Naturally, I wiped my old phone and recycled it last week, so even with Authenticator (which I also hadn't installed yet), I can no longer log in on my app, the web app, or the desktop app. *sigh*
    sd8k likes this.
  5. Vort

    Vort Level 0 Character

    sd8k likes this.
  6. mwisconsin

    mwisconsin Administrator Staff Member

    Passing along some hard-earned wisdom from my 1100+ hours using Roll20:

    If you need to create maps, check out https://store.steampowered.com/app/592260/Dungeon_Painter_Studio/

    If you'd like some _extremely cool_, animated maps, check out https://www.patreon.com/dynamicdungeons

    Free tokens can be found as easily as google-searching for "free tokens roll20", or you can use GiMP and create your own from images you've found or created.

    Pro-tip: Unless you can guarantee that all of your players have good and wide open bandwidth connections, I'd refrain from mood music during your session. It's a really cool effect, but the lag it induces in the session isn't worth it. Plus, it can get lost in the din when everyone starts riffing on Monty Python (it's a tabletop game, it happens).

    Use push-to-talk in your session. No one needs to hear all of your various bodily noises.

    When you create a new campaign/game, make sure to go into Advanced settings and click "Has Sight" as a default for all tokens. This means that in a dynamic lighting situation, the players controlling their tokens will be able to see things by default. (I don't know why this isn't the default, but whatever)
  7. JediSoth

    JediSoth Troubadour

    I haven't tried that since I actually know my password. I'll give it a shot and see if it still wants me to use the Authenticator which is no longer receiving its data before I create a new account.
  8. Vort

    Vort Level 0 Character

    One thing I'm not clear on: the Virtual GaryCon site only provides scheduling, it does not actually provide or enable any online play. So why would events need to be moved over? If they're going virtual with the same players as at the original event, couldn't the DM just message the players there with info on how/where the game is going to be run?
  9. sd8k

    sd8k Level 0 Character

    I wondered that too and I think the reason is for controlling the seats and the schedule. Although it’s virtual there are still limited slots.

    I like it because it gives us the flexibility to use what ever platform we want.
  10. Vort

    Vort Level 0 Character

    But -- and maybe I'm missing something here -- DMs can already do that from the regular GaryCon tabletop event, no? The flexibility doesn't come from tabletop, virtual or not, it comes from the DM saying "I use <this> platform, go <here> to login". I'm just concerned there's going to be a lot of unnecessary shuffling around, if seats have to be transferred from one system to the other.
  11. sd8k

    sd8k Level 0 Character

    I think the regular table top site only has events with physical locations. The vtt is to help keep people for accidentally signing up for a virtual event.

    Maybe it’s not that big of a deal but I could see folks getting confused and frustrated when they end up with a virtual event. I believe that is why the separated the physical from the virtual.
  12. sd8k

    sd8k Level 0 Character

    It looks like we are into plan B....

    I submitted my events. Is there any ETA on how long it will take to approve?

    I found out a couple things to share:
    1. the seats are first come first serve so make sure to Email your players!
    2. There is no separate place to put your virtual space. You need to add it to the long text for people to see it.

    Also, there are many helpful folks on the Discord server under #Learn-to-go-virtual

    They have a dice rolling helper bot names Avrae that you can invite to your server:
    Vort likes this.

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