Me and a couple of friends are just getting into P&P rpgs and are really excited to try something new. However, we have a problem that we live quite far apart from each other.

Therefore we'd like to use one of excellent virtual tabletops that are available.

But none of us have any real experience with creating a adventure and would thus like to use a premade and beginner friendly adventure. But we're having a hard time finding with premade story, maps etc in an online format. Most seem to be printed books and the Roll20 marketplace hasn't really gotten started yet.

So what we're looking for a is online way to play a premade adventure to get us started in the RPG world. How can we find these adventures for a VTT?

  • \$\begingroup\$ At the moment I feel this question is a little too broad to fit with the requirements of the site. It would be helpful if you could provide more detail about what kind of thing you want to play. For example, do you have a preferred genre, would you prefer rules heavy or rules light etc. \$\endgroup\$ – Wibbs Jul 29 '13 at 12:59
  • \$\begingroup\$ How you setup a VTT to run your campaign is a common question I get from friends. The technology is relatively new so many don't know where even to begin. Plus it is a growing aspect of tabletop roleplaying so it will come up more and more. So I don't consider to be overly broad at all. \$\endgroup\$ – RS Conley Jul 29 '13 at 13:21

There are premade adventures for Virtual Tabletop Software. For example the offerings at the Smiteworks store for Fantasy Grounds. But the good news is that most VTTs work by referencing a image directory containing maps and illustrations.

For PDFs it is a matter just copying the relevant map or image and pasting it into your VTT's image directory. If you don't have permission to do this with a PDF you can use the Print Screen button to capture the image and then crop it using a paint program.

For print products it is a matter of scanning the page, cropping it, and saving it into your image directory.

Finally you can use Google Image search and find thousands of images that you can use for your VTT game session including many free battlemaps.

If you are into using miniatures then you want to purchase or download tokens representing monsters and characters.

From experience teaching friends, the software and techniques to process images for VTTs are well within reach of even the most causal of computer users.

The biggest issue in my experience is not the setup of adventures but the choice of VTTs software and the setup of one's routers.

The basic issue is that some VTTs used by the referee is in reality a small server. Because of this a port needs to be opened up in your router to allow two way traffic. Fantasy Grounds and MapTools are an examples of this type of VTT. The advantage of this approach is that there is no cost beyond the initial purchase or download of the software.

The alternative is the server side VTT like Roll20. Here everybody using the webbrowser to connect to the company server to setup a session to be played. The downside that that often a ongoing subscription, often inexpensive, is required to access full functionality.

My current recommendation is to investiage Fantasy Grounds, MapTools, or Roll20 see which best suits your needs.


You mentioned Roll20's marketplace; have you looked at the options?

When creating a new campaign on Roll20, you can create a blank campaign, or pick a module you have access to. A0: Crow's Rest Island is a free D&D 3.5/Pathfinder module for level 1 characters, created by the folks at Adventure a Week. (Adventure a Week has 19 more modules in their "A Series" available on their website, although they aren't integrated with Roll20 and they aren't free.)

In addition to Crow's Rest Island, the Roll20 Marketplace has The Breaking of Forstor Nagar, a Pathfinder module for level 8 characters (which is not free) by Rite Publishing. Rite Publishing has other modules available on their website, although none are pre-set up on Roll20.

Additional modules can be added to the Roll20 marketplace by just about anyone, it just hasn't happened yet. The main barrier to new modules is that all content of the module must be owned by the person submitting it (to avoid copyright issues), and while there is a demand for modules, there is greater demand for separate assets so that GMs can craft their own games. Thus, the artists who create for the marketplace tend towards token packs and map tiles, rather than full modules.

  • \$\begingroup\$ 9 additional modules have been added to Roll20 since this answer was written. Not all of them are 3.5/PF. \$\endgroup\$ – Brian S Aug 28 '14 at 14:32

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