Virtual Tabletop Recommendations Shadowrun 6E

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« on: <03-30-20/1738:20> »
Hey all!

I am looking for a good virtual tabletop system to set up for some virtual gaming given the times and was wondering if there were good recommendations on what system would work the smoothest with Shadowrun Sixth Edition.

If you have any recommendations or pros/cons I would appreciate it.

Thank you!


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« Reply #1 on: Today at 00:09:05 »
Many people use Roll20 and I have played 6th on it as well. Though you will still need to possibly keep your character sheet off line or in PDF it does work well.

The mapping is good for tactical combat but I am not a fan of the way they do things (their layering). It is a good program and can be used for free by players which is a plus and the subscription for GMs is not really that bad. Learning curve is smaller for a GM to get up and running but it doesn't feel very flexible to me and a D&D game will feel like a Shadowrun game on the system which can be a plus or minus depending on what you like. for me it is a minus. Once you get into programming macros for dice rolls things start to get a bit more complicated but it doesn't change the system very much and I really don't like there sheet integrations. Another plus on Roll20 is voice can be set up native though I don't know anyone that does that which also could be a con as it might not work well enough to use. :shrug:

The second one that I know of is Astral Table Top and though I am not as knowledgeable about it the thing that impressed me with it is that you can get a character sheet up with very little effort so long as you understand how to put form fields on a PDF background. This was really cool to me as I loved it. I could load a PDF of the character sheet and then define the form fields to be filled in. looked great. I do not know how the map features worked as of yet but the ability to have maps that are animated was impressive. I also don't know how the dice roller is. So mileage may vary but currently it is completely free for the full version I think. Though I use and am a fan of Fantasy Grounds this table top has me thinking of making a switch but I need to look more into it before I do.

The one that I am most familiar with is Fantasy grounds and I tend to use this most of the time. Not because it is better than anything else but because I know it the best. I have not used it for Shadowrun 6th yet but I would just grab a copy of the MoreCore ruleset and work from there, they do have a Shadowrun 5 extention so 6th is probably not far off from having a dev to put the ruleset together. I have even though of doing it myself once I have time. The subscription fee for this is not that bad comparatively and if the GM has the ultimate then the players only need the demo. I sprung for the full lisense in a one time shot in 2015 and still use it to this day so my subscription was basically 1.99 a month for ultimate. Currently though I would only subscribe to classic as Unity is in the works and if you want to buy a liscense you will want that one once the bugs are worked out. If you need to get up and running quickly you can get a MoreCore sheet up and running with little effort and it will be similar to running from a static sheet for now. You can then slowly add to it as you go along. You could also again use PDFs turned into Image files for character sheet dragged into the image folder if you want up and running in minutes. More core does handle D6 dice pools with difficulty easily. For me it would not take long for me to have a game running in FG probably a day to get a module in and be running it the next night but the same can be said for Roll20. I am a real fan of the flexibility of the table top but there is a learning curve and programming a ruleset would take some time.

If I needed to get up and running quickly and did not know any of the platforms I would try Astral. It doesn't have a ton of support currently but it seemed to have a lot of promise and all of them have a learning curve. If it can handle d6 dice pools then I would go with that.

I personally with my current knowledge would not switch from FG and if you are willing to put in the time to learn a Table top this is the one I would go for, but I may be biased as I know it well enough and it has the polish that I want as well as the flexibility that I like in a company I want to support.

Though that is my personal opinion you may also find that Roll20 is better as it has the support of the Shadowcasters network for most shadowrun online games and you can jump on one of those and try it out, which is a bonus. And it is also a good table top.

Sorry if they seems like a non-answer. Basically all I can say is you probably won't go wrong with any of these three so long as Astral can handle D6 pools. and all of them will take time to learn once you have learned the quirks of your set it won't matter as you will be able to get people up and running on them.
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« Reply #2 on: Today at 09:52:27 »
A lowfi approach might be Google Jamboard.  Its essentially just an online whiteboard.  It would NOT be good if you plan on having highly tactical combat where exact distances were important.  But if you use a lot of images in your games I think it might actually work better than Roll20, because you don't have to fiddle with the grid.  You would need separate dice roller and voice, though, or just trust people to roll their own dice.  A big plus is it is completely free.   It also lets folks freely use the post it notes and markers/pens to put information onto the virtual space; this is either a big plus or a not depending on how you run games.