Roll20, please help

Due to COVID-19 lockdown I am trying to move our Blades table game to Roll20. I have an account for when I have been a player but have never GMed Roll20.

Can someone point me to instructions on how to access the player sheets, etc.

Thank you.

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  1. Go to Roll20 and in My Games choose “Create A New Game”.
  2. During the creation process look for the menu button labeled: Optional: Choose a Character Sheet. Begin to type “Blades” into the menu bar and the Blades in the Dark sheet option will appear. Select it.
  3. Select the “I’m Ready, Create Game!” button.
  4. Once you are loaded into your game, choose the “Journal” menu on the right hand side of the screen.
  5. Click the +Add button and choose “character sheet”. You are the only person who can create sheets in a game.
  6. When you are in the created sheet, make sure that you add it to all players journals, and allow at least one player character in the box labeled “Can be Edited & Controlled”. Repeat as necessary.
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The first task as Udachnik said is to set up the character sheets. Each sheet to be assigned to each player and properly configured with the respective playbook by adding the playbook name - the rest will be automatically populated. Follow the on-screen instructions. Blades in the Dark sheets in Roll20 are probably one of the best, prime example how this should be done.

Then you have to set up the crew sheet, which is just a regular PC sheet but switched to Crew mode by clicking on the Crew/Character/Faction button. Make this sheet visible and editable to all players, but have the agreement to be updated by you or one players. You record the faction standing in the Faction mode of the sheet.

Then it is good to set up some handouts, which happen again in the Journal tab of the table:


I tend to organize my tables the same way I do in Fantasy Grounds - folders or categories for characters, lore, maps, vistas/scenic images and etc. I don’t like how Roll 20 displays the handouts, as a window within the browser, no immersion, but this is how it is for such “premium” experience. Complete lack of UX, but it is free. All images you upload will be in the Images tab, badly disorganized, you can make some organization there, but you can leave the chaos and focus on the content in Journal.

For better player experience, you can set up background as I did, to have generic table and some images spread around for more immersion. In the marketplace there are a lot of graphics to help, Google search-away tons more, free if you are into this part of the game. Marketplace item: https://marketplace.roll20.net/browse/set/1250/vile-tiles-table-tops

Then you can make the clocks, which is super nice addition and adds to the immersion. This can be done by creating rollable tables with images for each position and putting them as tokens on the table, via the interface. There are free images for each state on the internet, but also in the Roll20 marketplace there is already pack that has the tables prepared for you (or with the raw PNG if you intend to use elsewhere): https://marketplace.roll20.net/browse/gameaddon/149/a-time-for-treachery or https://marketplace.roll20.net/browse/set/3672/gothic-countdown-clocks


image

This is about it. :slight_smile:

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I second everything said here! It is actually fairly easy to set up for a session, however if things extend to being more permanently hosted on Roll20 there is a topic in Band of Blades here regarding ‘My Roll20 Setup’ and this can be searched for by the title.

That post would help with more advanced functions as well as a lot of the ‘adding pretty things’ to your gameboard.

There is a post here as well regarding using music for your sessions and there is a list I composed of all the wonderfully Blades-isk sounds and tracks. This will help with immersion of your players.

Hope this helps! :slight_smile:

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@Udachnik @Valyar Would it be okay if I took your advice posted in this thread and made an official “Playing Blades in the Dark on Roll20” page on the main blades site?

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Hi all, this is tangential to a Blades specific conversation, but I’m wondering if folks have any advice for making sheets that work in Roll20 - do you need to be a programmer to do it? Also I’m interested in knowing who has made the sheets for Blades and Band of Blades - I’d love to get sheets made for my game Crooked Paths at some point.

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Thanks everyone. I really appreciate the help!

Sure, go right ahead!

No problem, if you need more detailed explanation or contribution let me know :slight_smile:

Thank you both!

The new page is live at https://bladesinthedark.com/playing-roll20. Thank you!

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So - do we all need to get subscriptions, or can just the GM get a subscriptions?

A subcription gives you a lot of addons and special features but is not necessary to actually use Roll20 as either a GM or player.

DOes anyone know if there’s a way to export the clocks you set up like this? I made them in my Hack the Planet campaign, but then when I started a second Roll20 group using straight Blades (rather than a hack like HtP), I had to make the clocks AGAIN. If I have to hand-make that 10- and 12-tick clock for a third game, I’m gonna weep uncontrollably and ruin my perfectly fine Blades rulebook.

If you purchase the marketplace modules that provide clocks, you can import them in each new game. Aside from that option, I am not aware of any way on the free tier to do that with tables.

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I just wanted to chip in with another thank you everybody, I’ve been pondering using roll 20 for our group for BitD over the last few days, and have found the comments really helpful.

Also, thanks for the added page amazingrando, on bladesinthedark.com, it came up easily in my many searches around BitD and roll20 this weekend. Hopefully it will be helpful to plenty of others.