Old School Hack Annotated Screenshot #2: Hand-Drawn Map and Tokens

Posted in EpicTable Development, Screenshots on April 27, 2011 at 11:45 pm

This is the second post in a series of annotated screenshots from an Old School Hack campaign I’m involved in.   Brennen is the GM, Bryan and Brian, are the players.    If you missed the first post in this series…um..well, that was the link, so I guess I’ll just get on with it.

Hand-Drawn Map and Tokens

Brennen drew a quick map and scanned it in.   As much as I give Brennen a hard time about hassling me for ad-hoc drawing tools, he’s right—they’re necessary, and I want them too.  I “drew” a river with blue stones in a session, which is something I don’t want to ever repeat.  Over the Easter holiday, I prototyped some drawing support….  Ah, but until then…Brennen draws maps and scans them in.  He then sets them as his background on a tabletop or a map.  (There’s really no difference except a map can have a grid, and will be able to support vision later—actually supports it now, but it’s turned off in the beta thus far, because vision opens up a whole new can of worms.)

The tokens here are an accidental variety.  We have a couple of square ones, which is the result of a couple of us setting the same image for portrait and token.  (One of us should have known better.  One of us wrote the code that creates a pog-style token from the portrait, if you don’t supply a token.)  The wolf token is an example of EpicTable creating a token automatically from a portrait.  The other small round token was a separate token image supplied by Brian for his character, and the red stones are game pieces that are in the EpicTable game piece gallery.  Brennen’s using them here for enemy minions, rather than digging up images.

EpicTable-OSH-BridgeMap

Open Image


Old School Hack Annotated Screenshot #1 – Game Intro Tab

Posted in EpicTable Development, Screenshots on April 21, 2011 at 11:04 pm

Recently, the online gaming group I’m part of has been playing Old School Hack.  I really like the system, but instead of going on about OSH, I’ll point you to Matt Jackson’s posts about Old School Hack.

Brennen actually ran this game, so all I have are screenshots.  He and I will do a screencast of a walk-through in a future session and focus on using various EpicTable bits to create something like a character sheet.  In the meantime, I’ll post a series of annotated screenshots from our session.

Game Intro Tab

Brennen put together this nice intro to his game to set the stage for us.  It has an overland map of the area, some adventure background material, and even a set of suggestions for setting-appropriate names.  This is a great, creative use of EpicTable tabletops.

EpicTable Screenshot - Game Intro Tabletop

Open Image

Screen Maximizing View

You can maximize your screen real estate in EpicTable in a number of ways.  You can minimize the ribbon from a right-click menu or a double-click on any of the tabs at the top (Main, Characters, etc.).

You can set the various panels, like Chat, Dice Tray, and Portrait Bar to “Hide” or “Auto-Hide”, or you can detach them and drag them to a secondary display.

In this screenshot, I have the Dice Tray and Portrait Bar hidden, and I’ve dragged the Chat window to my second monitor.

Overland Map

Brennen drew this overland map and scanned it in for use with EpicTable.  Drawing tools aren’t integrated into EpicTable (yet).  Those of you wanting ad-hoc drawing tools in EpicTable will have Brennen’s relentless campaign for them to thank when they arrive.

The map is, I think, part of the background he used. Alternatively, he could have used an “image object”. The adventure text and name list are “rich text objects”.

Like any other surface in EpicTable, you can use game pieces or character tokens on this map.  What I’ve found helpful is using stones or map pins (from the gallery on the Tabletops tab) to mark the group’s position or important landmarks.

Adventure Background

Brennen used a rich text note (from the Tabletops tab) to provide a brief set of adventure notes to get us all on the same page (so to speak).

He could have used a plain old notecard, but those are plain text and he’s way too into typography for that.  <g>

Sample Character Names

Brennen included a couple lists of setting-appropriate character names right here on the game intro tab.  That’s a great idea.  Not only did it help guide the naming of our own characters, but it gave us a set to draw from for NPC names.

In EpicTable, this is a “rich text note” (accessible under the Tabletops tab) placed on the tabletop.


Fudge Dice in the Chat Window

Posted in EpicTable Development, Screenshots on October 29, 2008 at 12:26 am

A quick addendum to my last post, about dice rolls in the chat window: I’ve got Fudge dice working.

In case you’re not familiar with Fudge dice, they’re six-sided dice with two “+”, two “-”, and two blank sides. Rolling four Fudge dice gives you a range from -4 to +4. Fudge is a “rules-light” game system originating in the 1990s. A number of game systems draw upon Fudge in one way or another. For instance, Spirit of the Century, a popular pulp RPG, traces its lineage back to Fudge via FATE.


Dice Rolls in the Chat Window

Posted in EpicTable Development, Screenshots on October 27, 2008 at 9:08 am

Recently, I discussed EpicTable’s Dice Cup Designer. Since that post, I’ve integrated a lot of technology from the Dice Cup Designer into the chat window. Dice rolls have been working in the chat window for a long time, but the chat window used to use a canned set of dice I’d shot with a digital camera. Functional, but not very pretty. It also used to lack support for some of the more interesting dice rolls that the Dice Cup Designer can create. Now, the chat window uses Brennen’s oh-so-much-prettier dice, it preserves the color scheme of the dice, and it visualizes features of the dice cup, such as summing the dice and dropping dice. …continue reading Dice Rolls in the Chat Window


EpicTable Dice Cup Designer

Posted in EpicTable Development, Screenshots on October 13, 2008 at 2:14 am

One of my goals for EpicTable is to support many different roleplaying games. In a previous post, I discussed my efforts to implement dice rolls found in a wide variety of RPGs. In this post, I examine dice rolls from a slightly different angle—that of composing complicated dice rolls—and I’ll give you a preview of EpicTable’s “Dice Cup Designer“.
…continue reading EpicTable Dice Cup Designer


Roleplay-Centric Chat

Posted in Screenshots on August 31, 2008 at 11:58 pm

In this post, I’m going to introduce you to EpicTable’s “Roleplay-Centric Chat” features. I call EpicTable’s text chat “roleplay centric” because it has features like an integrated dice roller, support for multiple personas, and many other features that tailor it to the roleplaying experience.
…continue reading Roleplay-Centric Chat


Tavern in Virtual Tabletop TrueVision

Posted in EpicTable Development, Screenshots on May 26, 2008 at 3:41 am

In this post, I’m going to introduce you to EpicTable’s TrueVision. TrueVision allows you to show your players only what their characters would see. It takes into account lighting, line-of-sight, and visual acuity (e.g., low-light vision, darkvision) or equipment (e.g., nightvision goggles). …continue reading Tavern in Virtual Tabletop TrueVision


Main Screen (Map Centric)

Posted in Screenshots on May 23, 2008 at 4:41 am

This screenshot shows the main EpicTable screen. For map-based games, this is what you’ll often be looking at. The player characters, as well as an ettin they’re about to encounter, occupy the character bar near the top of the screen. The GM can drag these around into initiative order, or turn order, or whatever’s appropriate for your game. He can also drag them onto the map.

Center screen, you see the player tokens on the map. Naturally, these can be dragged around as well. The entire map is illuminated because we’re looking through the GM’s point of view. In a later screenshot, I’ll show you TrueVision in action— where each player only sees what his character would see.

Notice that you have your chat window at the right. (That’s dockable in case you don’t want it on the right.) Notice also the user-defined dice cups at the top. Often, you’ll roll dice right from your character sheet, but you have the option to use these ad-hoc dice cups.

Finally, it’s worth noting that because this is the GM’s view, there are some things available that wouldn’t be there for players; for instance, the ability to add images to the handout gallery and the buttons allowing him to create more maps. We’ll get deeper into some of these features in later posts.


Credits:
Map made using Dundjinni with textures and objects from the user art forum; notably, Cistacola’s cavern textures, Greytale’s arches (which became bridge rails), and Dragonwolf’s tile (north of the bridge). The tokens are courtesy of Fiery Dragon Productions. You can find links to all these on my Links page.


EpicTable QuickStart

Posted in EpicTable Development, Screenshots on May 21, 2008 at 8:00 pm

EpicTable’s QuickStart page is the first thing that greets you when you launch EpicTable. As you can see in this screenshot, you’re shown a list of the games in which you’re participating. Icons to the left of each game name indicate whether you’re the GM or a player . …continue reading EpicTable QuickStart


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