Jump to content
Sign in to follow this  
Uncle Istvan

What is the best medium for online play?

Recommended Posts

Due to getting old and having girlfriends our group has only managed to meet up twice in the last 6 months, but we'd like to play more.

There has been talk about continuning it over e-mail between sessions, but we don't know which the best method to do it is. e.g. are there web apps to roll d10s that shows/sends the results to everyone? Should the PCs include the GM in all their discussions? Is there something better than emailing?

Also most of it would be done at work with firewalls ect. so i doubt we'll be able to use dedicated gaming websites.

Any advice or comments would  be appreciated

Cheers

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Your best option is to run the game via some form of real time chat. Voice chat and webcams is probably best, but something like IRC works fine as well. I'd encourage you to set up a message board somewhere to take care of the explorers planning between sessions; stuff like long term research or investigation, organising events and governing the dynasty. That way you can use actual session time to focus on the action; exploring on foot, combat, important meetings, stuff that needs to be handled fully in character.

If you run a game via IRC you can usually find some sort of bot to roll dice for you. Otherwise you can use invisiblecastle.com/ . It allows for logged rolls which are associated with specific characters/accounts. That does slow down the game a fair bit though.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

3 Options, some of which others have posted:

1. Maptools online gaming - sort of an online conference room with a dice roller and chat function built into the program.  Can get program at www.rptools.net

2. OpenRPG online gaming - similar concept to number 1 but different program.  A number of website can supply the program. 

3. PBP using DM dice rolls or sites like www.invisiblecastle.com which will roll dice and keep rolls on file for DM to check.

There are also two voice chats that I know about: Ventrillo and Skype.  Both programs allow conference calls and Skype allows a chat function.  All programs are free to download but Vent servers may need to be set up with a cost. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

 Thanks for the suggestions guys, but all of those links are blocked on our navigators and GMs work computers. 

Has anyone had any experience of playing just over email? Its unlikley that we will all be online at the same time. 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I very much recomend Forums over email, if for no other reason then the ability to review.

Playing via post or Email is very different then playing 'live'  it reqires a lot more if-than statements, more thought out responces and is much, much slower.  It can work, I've run games by email before, but you accomplish about 1 normal session every month or so.  Also, forget about anying involving dice, particularly combat - it'll never work.  Just stick with pure storytelling.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I've had some small success using Google Wave to run a game of Dark Heresy. It's a good balance between the benefits of forums (fora?) and email... Having the whole history of a document available is very handy if you come back to a Wave after a few days, and being able to replies at any point in a Wave means you don't have to wait for a particular player to respond before continuing with the story. Add on to that there are a shed load of drawing gadgets perfect for doing maps and dice rolling apps for, well, rolling dice.

I'm planning on doing a blog post on this soon, but I can post some more advice if anyone wants it. I'm not sure if it's open to the public yet, bt I've got some invites hanging around if anyone wants some...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I run a game over e-mail, and the advantage over board-posting is that you can tailor each message to its recipient. IE, you can enforce a Fog Of War so that players do not "abuse" information that is strictly only available to other characters.

This is great, but means more work for the GM.

On the other hand, I participate in a game by post-on-board, and it's good fun to read the posts and thoughts of the other characters, even though it's really Out Of Character knowledge.

In both cases the bace really slows to a crawl during action scenes, but that goes with the territory.

The Board game uses invisible castle for posting roll-results, but there really is no way to guard against cheating here unless you go with some integrated Board/Roller solution. In my own game, I handle all rolls on my end (which conveniently allows me to fudge all results I like), using a combibation of player input and common sense to decide when to apply Fate Points.

It seems to work well enough, and I haven't had any complaints.

The advantage of the written medium is you can include decent descriptions without having to make up everything on the spot or read verbatim from a pre-written book. If a player does something unexpected, you have time to consider responses and to evaluate the situation from each NPC point of view.

When running a live Pen And Paper Table game (with beers), you just have to ad-lib, and hope you make consistant and believable decicions.

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Darth Smeg said:

I run a game over e-mail, and the advantage over board-posting is that you can tailor each message to its recipient. IE, you can enforce a Fog Of War so that players do not "abuse" information that is strictly only available to other characters.

This is great, but means more work for the GM.

On the other hand, I participate in a game by post-on-board, and it's good fun to read the posts and thoughts of the other characters, even though it's really Out Of Character knowledge.

On RPOL, you can designate parts of your public posts to only be visible to certain characters, which means you can get the bonus you see in e-mail gaming on a forum.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Interesting.

Though e-mail also has the advantage of making its presence known to casual players without the need to log into a web-address they might otherwise forget to visit.

And you can attach anything you like.

Horses for courses :)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Just my two cents. An old but good one: IRC.

Several servers (sorcery comes to mind as just one) have a built in dice roller, or you can sync your own through a standalone application, or something like mIRC.  IRC stores logs of what's going on, so you know who has what. And while the technology's dated, it's solid. Everyone logs in, you start the game, and zoom. It's how my group handles 90% of our games these days, including two different Rogue Trader games.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

 Fantasy Grounds is a good online game system coupled with Skype. javascript:void(0);/*1283382312848*/  We've been using for the last 4 years or so and it is very good at being a virtual table top, with dice rollers, characters sheets and such built in. It is also able to be customized if you know some programming to fit other games. But there are many "rulesets" built by the community or that u can purchase the fits different games systems. It's default is D&D 3.5 and 4th edition. but there are rulesets for call of cthulu, Dark Heresey, Castles and Crusades, and some others. Some are free (like Dark Heresy that would work well for Rogue Trader) and others like Cthulu are actually made by companies and cost a small fee.

As mentioned earlier, we use skype along with it and it works very well, though the person hosting a session of Fantasy Grounds shouldn't also host the Skype call. Fantasy Grounds requires the GM to purchase the full game with gives them access to more functions, while players only need to purchase the lite version for making characters and connecting with the GM.

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Sign in to follow this  

×
×
  • Create New...