August 29

TTORP Thoughts

Please steal my idea (and tell me about it, so I can start using it).

The big idea

Log in to the site.  Create a campaign.  Create a player and/or NPC.  Link the characters of your players to your campaign.

A forum is automatically created, so start playing.  If you play in person, you can just post wrap-up notes.

Time for a dungeon crawl?  Generate one: click the “generate dungeon” button, preview it, then click “ok” to import it into the online mapper.  You can selectively add players or just add them all (default).

Time for battle?  Click “start a battle” button.  The system automatically prompts for initiative rolls; if necessary, you can let the system roll for each character, customized based on the character’s sheet/stats.  Round-by-round information is collected and stored:

  1. attack information (rolls, damage, etc)
  2. status effects (when they start, how long they last, etc)
  3. movement information
  4. held actions
  5. character added/removed (e.g. killed)
  6. spells cast

Did you screw up a roll in round 1, and now it’s round 5?  Adjust what happened in that round: the changes ripple through the next rounds; unless something unexpected happens, the system will just let you carry on.  If something unexpected does happen, like HP changes caused one of the players to die–or live–unexpectedly, the system stops and requires GM adjustments (because a deceased player can’t attack, and a living player wouldn’t just sit back for several rounds).

Done?  The system generates a round-by-round synopsis: you can make it as cinematic as you want, or just leave it matter-of-fact as it stands.

Back to playing the game.  Still in a dungeon?  Keep using the mapper to plot movement.  No?  That’s okay, no need to plot it anywhere.  Oh, you do?  Well, click the “world generator” button, adjust until necessary, then post that.  You can adjust party position(s) there as you need.

Posts in the forum will generate emails intelligently.  Players are notified if they’re not online, but will get notified if they don’t respond.  The forum will try to keep track of who received the emails, and indicates how far they’ve read (with a facility for players to indicate how far they’ve read).  If players aren’t online, they’ll get notified.  The system will generate “nag” emails to players if they’re not responding in time (configurable by the GM on a per-game and account-wide basis).

Posts can use special “@” codes to reference players, characters, a GM, or other things.  And it’s all linked up, so the GM can quickly look at the associated record right away.

Character sheets use level-based layers, so it’s easy to discern the “where” and “why” of things.  Not sure why a character has what seems to be a godly initiative?  You can look at the character on a layer-by-layer basis, so you can tell which level gave them what, and know exactly when things went wrong.  “Oh, looks like you gave yourself a +4 on level three, and you just called it ‘misc’ with no description.”

For players that like to build their character sheet in advance, they can!  Create the base layer, then add a layer for each level.  Apply the next layer as soon as the character levels.  You can see what it’ll look like at level 20, and what it looked like at level 1.  And every level in between.  Layers can be used during battles to apply temporary stats, like ability point damage from a monster.  Or adding layers based on a monster template, so you can immediately see how the character changes when it morphs into a werewolf.

What I have so far

I’ve got character sheets, with all the fancy calculations done automatically.  They’re not pretty, but they’re functional.  They save automatically.  Changes are reflected immediately without a page reload… usually.

I’ve got campaigns.  They link character sheets together, so a GM can see all the characters in the game and their information.  That part only is sort of broken, mostly because I’ve not had time to clean up some very old JavaScript code and some templates.

I have a forum, though it’s not linked to campaigns/characters.

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