CURSE OF STRAHD Is Now On FANTASY GROUNDS

WotC's latest adventure, Curse of Strahd, has made its appearance on the officially licensed virtual tabletop software, Fantasy Grounds. As usual, the package comes with player and DM maps, plus it also has Tarrokka cards, a random card selector, and the Death House introductory adventure.

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"The Fantasy Grounds version of Curse of Strahd includes all the DM maps provided in the book, plus player versions of the maps. Both sets have been pre-linked with the contents of each area and with monsters preplaced in starting locations for all top-down maps. The Castle Ravenloft maps are prevented in an isometric format, and are pre-linked to the contents for each section but are not suitable as combat battlemaps. You can still share these with players to reveal things as they explore by cutting away the mask (fog layer - as appropriate for Barovia) without fear of revealing secret doors, traps or other hidden items.

The module also comes with images for each of the Tarokka cards and a random table generator that can roll each of the cards and write the results out to a Story entry that you can refer back to later in the game as a DM. In the Curse of Strahd, the Tarokka deck influences where things occur within the story and ensures that each playthrough will be different.

Finally, we've added some themed desktop decals that overlay the Fantasy Grounds desktop to help reinforce the experience of exploring through Ravenloft.

Note that the adventure also includes the Death House introductory adventure as part of the adventure. Check Appendix B in your Story window."

You can grab Fantasy Grounds' version of Curse of Strahd right here.


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Russ Morrissey

Comments

ninjayeti

Explorer
I am surprised that they did not include non-isometric versions of the maps. The isometric stuff looks pretty but is not really useful for VTT gaming.
 

smiteworks

Explorer
Most of the maps are top-down style, with the exception of the castle maps which are all isometric. Unfortunately, these were not reversible isometric maps and were artist renditions of isometric maps, meaning that they couldn't simply be converted over. They are useful for exploring and all the hidden features are removed from the player maps, but they are not suitable for use as a combat map like most of the other maps. You would either need to run combats as theater of the mind there or use other maps for the combats.
 

ninjayeti

Explorer
Most of the maps are top-down style, with the exception of the castle maps which are all isometric. Unfortunately, these were not reversible isometric maps and were artist renditions of isometric maps, meaning that they couldn't simply be converted over. They are useful for exploring and all the hidden features are removed from the player maps, but they are not suitable for use as a combat map like most of the other maps. You would either need to run combats as theater of the mind there or use other maps for the combats.
Yes, I understand that the book does not come with top-down maps of the castle, and someone would have had to produce new versions of the isometric maps. But IMO part of the process of converting a book to a VTT product should be making sure that all of the major maps are included in a version that is ready to go on a VTT. If this were a "pay what you want" product on DMs Guild I wouldn't have an issue, but for a $35 product (plus the cost of licenses) from the industry leader I don't think this is too much to ask.

I am a big fan of Fantasy Grounds, just feel like you guys cut corners on what should have been a AAA product.
 

smiteworks

Explorer
We don't consider ourselves to be content creators and don't have the people on staff to do so. Whenever you start creating content to go along with or replace content that you are licensing from someone else, you then have to go through an entirely new approval process, make sure it matches with the artistic direction that the rest of the product has, etc. We have some publishers who include almost no maps and others who include maps for some but not all of their combat locations. We do spend a considerable effort linking maps with content and rendering all the content that is provided in the best way possible. For this set, we even edited out secret doors, traps and room numbers to create player usable versions of the maps where they were not provided.

It took us nearly up to the minute to get it finished in time to go through the approval channels for a release on the date of the public release as it is.

I understand from a consumer perspective what you mean. Maybe that is something we can consider at a future date. In the meantime, I would think that this is a perfect sort of thing for people to fill in on the DMs Guild.
 

JRedmond

Explorer
However you do create content sometimes. You did in fact create 11 maps for Hoard of the Dragon Queen. I think creating top down maps for this module would have went a long way for the customer.

We don't consider ourselves to be content creators and don't have the people on staff to do so. Whenever you start creating content to go along with or replace content that you are licensing from someone else, you then have to go through an entirely new approval process, make sure it matches with the artistic direction that the rest of the product has, etc. We have some publishers who include almost no maps and others who include maps for some but not all of their combat locations. We do spend a considerable effort linking maps with content and rendering all the content that is provided in the best way possible. For this set, we even edited out secret doors, traps and room numbers to create player usable versions of the maps where they were not provided.

It took us nearly up to the minute to get it finished in time to go through the approval channels for a release on the date of the public release as it is.

I understand from a consumer perspective what you mean. Maybe that is something we can consider at a future date. In the meantime, I would think that this is a perfect sort of thing for people to fill in on the DMs Guild.
 

Rhenny

Adventurer
As someone who has been using FG for over a year now, I have to admit that the maps and easy access to encounters/descriptions always blows me away. I'm still running PoTA and "Harried at Hillsfar" but I'll definitely pick up Curse of Strahd in the future.
 

Dire Bare

Adventurer
While I think the FG version of Curse of Strahd would have been improved by the inclusion of top down castle maps, I'm not one to blame Smiteworks for not including something that WotC didn't include themselves in the original product. You could make the same complaint about the physical product as well. And to claim that this perceived lack somehow makes the module not suitable for online play is overstating things more than a bit, just as it would be an overstatement to claim that no top down maps makes the module unsuited for tabletop play.

Besides, as Hawkwind has reminded us, there is an easy fix that'll take you all of 2 minutes to rectify this "problem".

My only issue is the internal debate: Do I purchase the physical book, the FG adaptation, or both?
 

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