Running a Play by Post and/or Roll20

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« on: <05-21-14/0546:42> »
With having so many campaigns ready to go, I'm looking into other options than the table to get some of them going.

I would like to ask the community here if they have any tips for Play by Post games, what works, what doesn't. Little tips they've picked up on the way.

I'd also like to ask those who are using and have used Roll20, what they thought of it, how well it worked, are there elements to keep an eye out for when using it.

Thanks ahead
When in doubt, C4.


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« Reply #1 on: <05-21-14/0629:05> »
I've played in a couple online games using roll20, and it seemed like a useful tool. We only really used it for dice rolls, though. Some combat maneuvering, in complex combats with lots of folks to keep track of.

Mostly though, skype for voice was the better tool. If your game is very graphic heavy (i.e., lots of maps/notes/etc) roll20 would likely be a good tool as well.

That's my two cents. Never done a PbP, either.
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« Reply #2 on: <05-24-14/0722:01> »
Thanks for the reply, I was hoping for a more inclusive tool for Roll20 to be honest. I might as well run things by Skype, in that case. Pretty sure I can set something up with my camera to get the map on there.
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« Reply #3 on: <05-24-14/1606:18> »
Play by Posts are typically pretty slow moving, a few posts a day at most in my experience. I would suggest making it clear what kind of game you're looking to run, and look at people who ask to joins posts in other play by posts to find out if their style suits your narrative style. I'd also suggest making it very clear how often you expect people to post (once a day, 3 times a week, more, or less). Other than that, look at some of the other Play by Posts here on the forum in general.

As for roll20, I run a weekly game using it for rolls and maps and Skype for voice; the team of 3 core people and a few additions have been running for over a year by now (all Season 2 SRM missions). The tool itself is pretty intuitive, and I find that I can both prepare maps ahead of time and add maps on the fly fairly easily in it. Adding tokens can be interesting, but once you get it done it usually doesn't need to be done again. Dice rolling is very straight forward, and usually runs pretty smooth (as long as you turn off 3D dice, in my experience). I use the free version.


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« Reply #4 on: <05-25-14/1007:06> »
As for roll20, I run a weekly game using it for rolls and maps and Skype for voice; the team of 3 core people and a few additions have been running for over a year by now (all Season 2 SRM missions).
Sorry to butt in, but I'm trying to get a rol20 game going amongst some friends too and it seems like the greater detail would be helpful to the OP as well.. anyway, is the integral Voice/Video of roll20 just crap/laggy or why use Skype?


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« Reply #5 on: <09-02-14/0030:03> »
For a little under a year now, I have been using RPGTO to run an online shadowrun game.  The table doesn't handle success based rolls well, so we quickly switched to for rolling.  RPGTO is formatted for d&d4e, but with their drawing tool, and a little creativity, it is devent enough to draw out maps for use with SR.  It has tabs for Player and GM notes, so that is nice too, as I have been able to enter information and track the events of my campaign.

Recently we discovered that roll20 has SR5 character sheets available now, and since it does handle success based rolls, we decided to check it out.  I just finished running my first game with it tonight.  Skype's voice is better, as the table voice seemed to let in a lot more background noise, so we disabled table voice, and used skype for the voice. 

If you download RPtools, or specifically tokentool, then you can pretty much make tokens out of any image you can find on the web.  I found a way to assign some of their status bars to physical and stun damage tracks, so that seems helpful.  Right now, we are trying to figure out if there is an easy to way migrate tokens from one map to the next, because right now I had to assign all the values individually, on each map we used the tokens on, and that just seems a little convoluted.

roll20 does not have the same convenient journals for player and GM notes, so you need to come up with your own system for that.  But, it does allow for the ability to take screen shots of maps from SR products, drop them into roll20, and if they happen to have grids, you can easily resize them to the grid on the table, though some of the scales look weird when you actually get to the scale with the grid.

Other than that, I think we are going to give roll20 another try, and may migrate to it permanently.
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« Reply #6 on: <09-03-14/0615:02> »
PBP is slow and there are far too many fanboys on this forum that are more interested in creating characters than actually playing them,
Any rules cock-up or tricky situation for GM or player tends to either result in GM disappearing or player not returning, both of which are problematic.
The one i've had most success with is my game on here "the old smoke". I started off with five characters playing solo in CH1, then forming a team in CH2. it weeded out the ones who couldnt be bothered with regular posts and its held together nicely. I'd perhaps suggest the same to you if you're looking at running one as ive had a number of games start without this method that have just died.

Also, biggest thing i find that kills games is a lack of direction pre-meet or the "you're sat in a bar" starting line. people get bored by the lack of direction and tail off quickly as it can be a month or so IRL between starting the game and finishing the meet with Mr J.
I'd try and have the players as an established team to cut out the crap bit, maybe just start them physically at the meet, sat at the table and then they can just get cracking on straight away