I am highly skeptical of the Unreal VTT


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Imaro

Legend
Eh, with the cost of getting a proper miniature collection going for the game... this may be a good alternative even for in-person games depending on the price. I wouldn't be adverse to hooking it up to the mounted tv and using it for more complicated combats.
 


Not skeptical that it will come out, but skeptical that it is a good way to play D&D. I honestly believe that the fancier the VTT, the more it detracts from anything not combat, and makes it harder to run things on the fly or even homebrew prepped.

Thoughts?
Straight-up agree 100%, specifically agree that the fancier the VTT, the more it detracts from TToM games.

However, the devil is in the details. If it's always trying to be super-fancy it'll be awful. But if it's something where you can kind of use it pretty simply if you want it might be fine.

Curious to choose UE5 given obviously no-one is particularly familiar with it. So it may be quite a while before we see the VTT as the devs "skill up" on it.
 




Stalker0

Legend
The million dollar question is the UI. How well it integrates into their digital tools, how easy is it to use and setup.

Is it easy to switch into a map mode and show the map versus just having a blank area for some TOTM dice rolling.
 

Anything but the most recent version of an engine would be a bad move, in terms of product maintenance.
Yeah that's a fair point, but so many businesses don't do that, include really big corporate ones, because of the sheer burden of getting people up to speed on the newest engine. UE5 is a remarkable engine, and very flexible (in theory), so could be good, for sure.

I guess the advantage here is the product doesn't exist, so however long it takes, it takes that long. It's not like they're trying to keep something going.
 

Thoughts?
I agree with you. My first impression is that this will be more or less the opposite of what I want in a VTT.
We'll have to see, though. Maybe they manage to build something that's like Fantasy Grounds, but nicer. (well, after watching the video, this is clearly not the case)
 
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Oofta

Legend
Hopefully I will never need a VTT again, but having a tool dedicated to D&D with a new code base sounds like a good idea. Far too often buying an existing system and trying to upgrade it sounds like a good idea but ends up being a bit of a train wreck. I've seen it too many times to count.

Hopefully they don't shut down the people that use tools to integrate the other VTTs with DDB.
 

J.Quondam

CR 1/8
Not skeptical that it will come out, but skeptical that it is a good way to play D&D. I honestly believe that the fancier the VTT, the more it detracts from anything not combat, and makes it harder to run things on the fly or even homebrew prepped.

Thoughts?
I tend to agree, especially with respect to tech limitations on homebrew and improv. I'd be happy to be proved wrong, though.
 

payn

Legend
I think this is very short sighted. VTT can take a lot of the load off combat, giving you more time and effort for other parts of the game. YMMV.
 

Retreater

Legend
Here's what I don't like about it.
  • Many players are already invested in a VTT. That investment will be made worthless in a couple years - or you can't play the current edition.
  • You're going to be paying to customize your token (a la HeroForge). We can currently just pull images from the Internet, make our own, or even use generic tokens. I'll bet that's not possible in this 3d environment.
  • My current setup has some lag when a teenager is playing online games, my wife is streaming HBO, and I'm running a game on voice chat and a VTT. This stuff isn't going to work, and I'll bet it's going to require a high end PC to do what you're seeing in the preview.
  • We've been burnt before (Gleemax?) I don't believe WotC can even pull this off.
  • Purchasing piecemeal monsters and other components from their adventures means DMs will have to "unlock" creatures to be able to use them in homebrew. (It's like Pokemon Go or something.)
  • It's tied in with D&D Beyond. And I don't use D&D Beyond.
  • 3PP will be screwed unless they can keep up with the programming and have access to use the proprietary system.
If this turns out to be a subscription-based suite of microtransactions like I'm reading, they can keep it.
 

Reynard

Legend
I think this is very short sighted. VTT can take a lot of the load off combat, giving you more time and effort for other parts of the game. YMMV.
In my experience, asset heavy VTTs make improv harder and make the game focus too much on combat and the grid. Just having a regular old VTT map up during exploration changes the nature of dungeon crawls, for example, so having a constant Dwarven Forge level setup is going to present problems too.
 

I'd prefer it if a VTT was augmented reality based. So you can mix physical things like a battle map (or none at all) and miniatures with the virtual. Like use your phone to do things like determine the area of effect of a spell over a point that you drag around in the camera view.
 

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