Wihzerd wrote:clintmemo wrote:Wihzerd wrote:John wrote:I recommend easing into the features of whatever VTT you're going with. It would be pretty difficult to go from a flat stop to a roll20 game in which you made full use of the character sheet macros, dynamic lighting, map layers, etc. There's nothing wrong with starting out just using a single image for a map, doing most of the rolls by hand, and tracking things the old fashioned way. You can implement the fancier features as you go.
I've been having a problem trying to communicate that point as I've been pushing my group into adopting roll20. It's been a hassle trying to get them to drop the mindset of "well, if I didn't have time to make a highly detailed map this week, I guess we just won't use roll20 this time". The bare minimum required is not that much different from the dry erase grid we typically use. Just simple geometric shapes on a white background. That's it. If you DO have time to do better and want to make something special, great. But deeming that level of detail NECESSARY is a trap.
If the most recent session is any indication, I THINK I'm starting to get through to them.
There are more maps on the internet than you could ever use.
There are at least 2 subreddits where people post their maps. It is a great source for generic types of maps - forest roads, towns, crypts...
They do make use of pre-made material, trust me. While that certainly takes less effort than using a program with lots of bits and pieces of illustrated maps that you can composite together, it still takes time to scour the internet for a nice collection of maps to have ready for instant use. When you have a job and family obligations, this isn't always convenient.
My point is about what should and should not be considered THE BARE MINIMUM. Not when you have a moderate amount of prep time for maps, but when you have practically NONE. Sometimes all you need are hastily drawn rectangles, circles, and squiggly lines to get the idea across. Considering our group just went fully remote this weekend (social distancing), I suspect priorities will change. They CAN'T put off Roll20 until they have time to master it between games. They have to use the basics NOW.
You can draw stuff on the fly in roll20 but it is a bit clunky.