If setting up a D&D 5e campaign in foundry from scratch, would would your be your "must-have" settings and mods?


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My current campaign will be wrapping up in a few months. I'm not 100% sure that I'll run another 5e game for my next campaign, but it is likely.

I'm thinking of starting from scratch. I spent so much time testing and troubleshooting community mods to get the game to run like I wanted, but ended up with tinkering fatigue. I've given up about trying to get things to automate consistently and correctly. If I run 5e in foundry again, I'll likely stick to basics.

My "must have mods" include:
  • Dice So Nice! I like pretty, customizable 3D dice and this mod has always been solid. Purely an aesthetic choice.
  • DnD Beyond Importer (Mr. Primate's version) - not always perfect with character sheets, but most issues are with homebrew stuff. Never an issue with monsters, spells, and items imports and I'm not going to be adding that stuff manually
  • Dice Tray - adds a nice GUI for ad-hoc dice rolls at bottom of the chat. Nice QOL feature. Never had a problem with it.
  • Drag Ruler. Much easier than using the default ruler. You get the measurement as you move the token. Never had an issue with it.
  • The various Moulinette mods (Core, Game Icons, Image Sets, Tiles), just makes finding and and applying art when prepping so much easier. Never had any issues with it.
  • Multilevel Tokens. The killer feature is creating teleport effects. What makes this a must-have for me is that I can have token automatically move from one map to another. So if characters get to the edge of one map and will move to another or go up or down a level, it makes it much easier to have the tokens placed without having to redrop them from the actors menu.
  • Quick Insert - Search widget. They really should integrate this, or something like it, into Foundry core. Simple hotkey and you can search all actors, items, spells, character/monster features, and other assets and easily open them or drop them onto the board or as links in note descriptions etc.
There are other mods I may use again, but my list are my "must haves". Those I "can't" live without. One thing I'm going to try to play without for awhile are any of the automation mods. To many interdependencies, too many settings, hard to keep track on what relies on what, features often overlap and I've never gotten them to work well.

I would really like to have a way to easily apply area of effect templates and automate the saves and damage, but everything I've tried seems wonky and every few times something doesn't work well and it just take more time fiddle with than if I just did it manually. This is really where a VTT should shine, but I've never been able to get a setup to work reliably in Foundry for 5e.

But I think I should still with the standard features of the Foundry 5e system, relearn it, and get a solid grasp of how to use it without mods. Then maybe I will consider conservatively trying to add some automation back in.

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