Foundry Virtual Tabletop

Discussion on playing Earthdawn. Experiences, stories, and questions related to being a player.
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Foundry Virtual Tabletop

Post by Mcgarnagle » Sat Sep 19, 2020 5:39 pm

Hey everyone!

I’ve been running Some non-Earthdawn games on Foundry vtt and I have been keen to reintroduce Earthdawn to my players using it. We’ve been on hiatus since March.

Anyway, Foundry is nice because the community is constantly creating modules that add features to your Foundry games, but I haven’t seen much love for Earthdawn yet (such as a character sheet or dice roller).

There are ways to implement games thaT don’t have any specific support such as using form fillable PDFs for character sheets and I was able to get someone in the community to create a very simple skeleton of a dice roller. I think with these two things, I might be able to start running Earthdawn again!

Just wondering if anyone else has checked out Foundry VTT and/or if anyone has thought about creating some content in the form of a automated character sheet (ie. buttons for dice rolls, etc)?

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Re: Foundry Virtual Tabletop

Post by ragbasti » Sun Sep 20, 2020 7:17 am

I haven't used Foundry, yet, but it looks cool. Might give it a go over the next weekend an see what it does differently from the others.

As for character sheets, I believe the Roll20 one was quite the undertaking, integrating it with the systems on the site and all.
So not sure how easy that'll be to re-do for Foundry

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Re: Foundry Virtual Tabletop

Post by Belenus » Sun Sep 20, 2020 11:44 am

Never used Foundry myself.
In times of Corona I used Roll20 for the first time, where a semi official character sheet connected to a dice roller and initiative system including the use of battlemaps exist.
But I stumbled upon some problems with the dynamic lightning / fog of war and the character sheet itself is a bit to unstructured.

So could you please tell me more about Foundry, it's pros and cons (compared to Roll20)? :)
Last edited by Belenus on Sun Sep 20, 2020 12:31 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Foundry Virtual Tabletop

Post by Sharkforce » Sun Sep 20, 2020 12:21 pm

dynamic lighting is apparently borked all across roll20 from what I understand. the character sheet does have some things that take a bit of getting used to, but I have found it is very good at telling you what it wants you to do if you take the time to hover over things :)

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Re: Foundry Virtual Tabletop

Post by Mcgarnagle » Sun Sep 20, 2020 5:55 pm

Full warning, I haven’t used roll20 much at all. I did check it out solely for the Earthdawn stuff, but I also found the character sheet to be busy and overwhelming (but it definitely seems to be all encompassing, which can be handy) For my needs, I wanted something more streamlined.

My experience with Foundry has been a good one! It has dynamic lighting (supposedly similar to roll20) and it works wonderfully. It seems super easy to add in walls and obstructions on maps.

There are hundreds of modules that the community has made and new ones are added every week. I feel that this is the biggest plus for Foundry. Most modules are system agnostic and there are many that tweak things for the base program that just makes things better, especially for a GM.

Specifically for Earthdawn, there are a few cons to it (not sure if some of these cons exist in Roll20 as well). The big con is the lack of a character sheet. However, one module called PDFoundry let’s you import any form fillable PDF character sheet and use that. It’s very much the same as if you were sitting around a table with a paper copy if your character in front of you. The creator of this module is also working on incorporating JavaScript into the form fillable sheets which would allow you to program macros into the fields (ie automated dice rolls). Apparently this is a ways out still, though.

The other big module that has great potential for Earthdawn implementation is one called sandbox. This basically lets people with not coding experience (such as myself) create a functional character sheet (ie with buttons to click to make step rolls) within Foundry. I won’t lie, though; an Earthdawn characters sheet via this method would take a loooong time to make and the sandbox module has a moderate to steep learning curve, but, from what I can tell, it can be done. The creator of Sandbox has several hours worth of tutorial videos on YouTube.

Another issue is the combat tracker; the default is more designed for d&d and, to date, I’ve not found a module the someone’s created that could pass for the Earthdawn initiative system. You can still use it, but you’d need to manually enter in the initiative rolls every round. Apparently, if you have coding skills, you can take discord bots and utilize them in Foundry, and there is a nice die roller bot designed for Earthdawn already (and I think it tracks initiative too??)

There is a dedicated die roller in the system. You can install modules that create animated dice on the screen and there are some other dice modules that have been created that are handy. The issue with some of these modules is that they don’t account for exploding dice. Foundry is set up to handle exploding dice (and practically any other dice rolling system you can think of) but without a Dedicated exploding dice roller being programmed, you have to type in the code with the appropriate suffixes to get the dice to blow up.

However, this is a relatively easy fix with a script macro. I have one that, when you click on it, it pops up a drop down menu and allows you to pick a step from 1 to 50 and the roll it to the chat. It’s designed to handle exploding dice and it works really well.

Foundry is a one time cost for a GM ($50) and to my understanding, the features you get are either comparable or better than what you’d get for a subscription for roll20.

All and all, I’ve been really happy with it and the Future for Foundry seems bright.

Wicket Warwick
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Re: Foundry Virtual Tabletop

Post by Wicket Warwick » Sat Jan 16, 2021 10:45 am

Do I have to create the step-system by myself or are there any macros for Earthdawn? We are thinking about change from Roll20 to foundry vtt

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