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34

The RPG Virtual Tabletop (VTT) site, particularly the links section, summarizes most of the known options. The most popular VTTs are: Fantasy Grounds (Windows XP or later, DirectX 9.0+) (video demo) Gametable (Java VM, system independent) Maptool (Java VM, system independent) Roll20 (web-based, system independent, built-in voice/video chat) Generally, ...


12

Roll20 is another option you should consider. It runs in the browser, allows you to upload images to be used as tokens/maps from your PC and provides a number of other features that sound suited to what you want.


12

Fantasy Grounds is the one I use and the one I feel is the most polished. Most run on windows, and require that the referee be able to open a port as he acts as server. Most people couple these with a VOIP software with Skype being the most popular. But if you have your own server you have a lot more options as you can pick whatever VOIP software you like. ...


10

All too often overlooked is Google Docs. It's free, instantly accessible without downloading or registration, and it includes multiple platforms for live collaboration between up to 50 people at a time. Google Documents work essentially like cloud-hosted Word documents, and are perfect for character sheets, campaign logs, handout-type information, and ...


9

Get a webcam positioned to point at the game table from any angle you find ideal. I had one with a long cable it hung on the top of the table from the fan once and it was awesome. My first attempts were with my Playstation Eye (with drivers) because I didn't want to pay for a very good webcam but if you guys are gonna play like this often, it's worth the ...


9

I've found that having everyone on voice chat together (I've used skype) along with having a Google Spreadsheet open as a "map" for combat works for a couple online sessions.


8

If you're going to play D&D or another game that might need a battlemat, I've found MapTool to be superb. It works anywhere you have Java, and lets you script stuff for easier calculations.


7

If you and your players all happen to have Android phones you could try using the Multiplayer Online Jenga App for Android. https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.naturalmotion.j3n64&hl=en I'm not sure if there is an iPhone version for those with iPhones (and even if there is, you may find the two version don't play well together if you have ...


6

There is a pretty swank Google+ Hangout plugin called Tabletop Forge that's in development and currently has a funded Kickstarter to help expand its features boost development. The following is the Features List taken from their site: General UI flexibility. Most of the widgets in the application are both resizable and movable so you can layout things as ...


6

Low complexity characters, Google+, and shared/automated bookkeeping Due to my functional exile while waiting for my thesis results, I've found myself doing quite a lot of remote, live, gaming. The easy answer is technological: any of the remote telecom tools work quite well, though it's important to decide on voice or video. I use video (google+) when: ...


6

In a pinch, the drawing feature of Google Docs works wonderfully for simple map duties. You can import an existing map or (crudely) draw a new one, make icons or import portrait images for use as miniatures, and give live view or edit access to a whole horde of players. And the best part is that nobody has to download any new software. Obviously, you'd ...


6

My table uses MapTool to share the physical state of the game. I love it because I can have five or ten maps ready in advance and dial up the right one for the evening. TokenTool is a perfect companion piece of software, letting you cut-and-paste high-visibility icons from sprites and pixel art websites. (Most of the tokens I've seen look like roiling ...


6

Our group scattered all over a couple years ago, but we've kept playing through free tools such as Gametable and VirtualDaivve (very similar but the latter is more geared towards 4.0) with a simple wiki for group visible documents. Some sort of voice chat (Vent, Skype, ...etc) is a must, as it allows you to still have those moments of random ...


5

For those who don't use maps in combat, Skype or Ventrillo and a shared die-roller is a viable option. Skype has both audio and text chat; having run games via skype, the combination is excellent. Further, if you have a handout or graphic, you can share your screen and/or upload to the players the file. The drawback is that, unless you pay, conferencing is ...


5

I know a number of people who use G+ Hangouts as a platform for regular long Distance RPG sessions and feedback has been that it works very well, again no additional software downloads required. That supported by Google Docs and perhaps something like twiddla.com (which also includes a dice roller) for quick shared sketches/layouts etc. and you've got most ...


5

My group has been playing with a mixture of tabletop meeting and online players for more than 3 years. The group at the table uses an omni-directional microphone over Skype. There is grousing every so often about dropped calls, but it gets the job done. For battles, we use Gametable. There is a newer version on sourceforge, but the one that's linked from ...


5

Others have already pointed out exactly how useful MapTools can be to a gaming group who is nonlocal; I myself used it in the course of running a 3:16 game online and had a great time. The real key to running something online and having it be effective is the use of voice. While you can use chat rooms and that sort of solution to run games, having ...


5

I've been doing this successfully for some months now with our group, over various games. We were initially using iTabletop for our remote players, but the voice proved unreliable, so we've switched to using Google Hangouts. Even Teamspeak will work fine at a pinch. Firstly, some issues of GMing style: Don't make heavy use of map-based combat unless you ...


4

Seeing the updates you've made to your question I would definitely recommend MapTool and Skype. Reading in the MapTool forums I know that many people use the software with a mixture of people present and remote so that won't be a problem. MapTools has a massive feature list which can be daunting at first. I recommend people start using it just as a ...


4

I use Skype for talking and MapTools for everything else. Map tools is absolutely marvellous and free. It has all the features offered by the others and more besides. Its vision and light tools are particularly good. Its also very easy to use. My son (10 yrs) saw me using it and immediately wanted to play. A short time later I was subjected to his ...


4

I haven't tried any new virtual tabletop clients in a few years now, but I swear by Gametable. It has a reasonably intuitive UI, negligible system requirements, it's free and platform-agnostic, it's well-supported and updated, it's trivially easy to create content for (Somebody mentioned buying minis? Why on earth would you spend money on them? I've got a ...


4

We arrived at this situation from the other direction (everyone used laptops, one remotely) but I hope our solution may prove helpful even though it does involve a virtual table. After the DM found a 19" monitor for 99 bucks he set up his laptop with the monitor in a dual monitor setup. We used Maptool with Skype, The DM ran the session on his laptop ...


4

Google hangouts with the tabletop forge app has been a tremendous boon to the group that is playing here on the stack. Hangouts is great in that those that want to use video can, and it works with even the worst internet connections (I have about the worst broadband speed possible and the connection quality is pretty solid) Tabletop forge allows you to add ...


4

Perhaps this would be helpful: EvilDM Dice Server: Roll Dice You can enter (where the bold corresponds to the empty fields): Roll 4 d 6 +0 and keep the top 3, 6 times for ability scores


4

Here's an easy one to use. It should cover everything you need. http://www.pbegames.com/roller/


3

www.PBPMap.com will if you PM than create a persistent web hosted map. Or you can download the source code and host it yourself. There's a demo map on the site. Beware it's only for play by post style games but that it does very well as it was designed for that and is web hosted 24/7, so no software downloads :)


3

I usually play over IRC. If voice, such as Skype, isn't a practical option for you then IRC can be a nice alternative. I've found it to be simple, reliable, and to be extremely compatible with slower internet connections. You'll need an IRC client, a list of which can be found on the wikipedia page linked above. You'll also need to connect to an IRC Server. ...


3

I had a similar question some time back. One of my players was at a distance for some time, but he is back now. While he was away we still wanted to play, so I asked what tools were available to run a virtual table top game. The answers from this group there might help you. Software VTT question


2

I've used skype plus a shared dice roller. Skype allows up to four line voice chat, plus single shared video (screen or webcam), and simultaneous text chat and/or file transfer. http://www.catchyourhare.com/diceroller/ is an online dice-rolling solution that allows several players to have distinct colored dice, rolled and then they can be sorted. It ...


2

A lot of people here have mentioned Skype already, so I will point out two similar programs, TeamSpeak and Ventrilo, which also allow you to speak with other players online. Skrbl is essentially an online whiteboard, which allows you to share maps and such more simply than holding a drawing up to your webcam. Any wiki software can be used to keep track of ...



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