Recommend a Virtual Tabletop (VTT), 2022 Edition

Which VTT Do You Use/Recommend? (2022 Edition)


CleverNickName

Limit Break Dancing
A couple of years ago when I did that "Recommend a VTT" poll, FantasyGrounds and Roll20 were far and above the most popular platforms with over 86% of the total votes combined....and FoundryVTT got only a single vote. It was at the start of the pandemic, when we were scrambling to find ways to keep playing D&D and other tabletop games.

Well it's been 2 long, hard years of the pandemic, and I wondered how different that poll might look today.

So I pulled up that same list of available virtual tabletops that I used before. The "greatest hits" are there, like Roll20 and FantasyGrounds, and a few of the rising stars like Arkenforge and Astral...but I'm sure that some of these have been abandoned and new products have entered the scene...so please make generous use of the "Other" option.

Please vote for the VTT that you currently use, or one that you have used and would recommend to the rest of us. What programs do you like to use and why? Which ones are great for beginners, and which ones are more suitable for veterans? Are there other tools that you use or recommend for video, chat, or character sheets? Share your experiences as a virtual newcomer or seasoned veteran as we all step out of the shadows of the pandemic.
 
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CleverNickName

Limit Break Dancing
Over the last 2 years, my gaming groups and I have used Roll20, FantasyGrounds, and FoundryVTT.

FantasyGrounds was impossible for us, because the software installation requirements meant that some of our players weren't able to use the platform at all (trying to install, and then connect, FantasyGrounds on two ChromeBooks, one WinBook, an iPad, and two Dell PC laptops was impossible.) Which was a shame. I imagine that if everyone in my group had the same computers and the same OS, it would have been wonderful. But without reliable cross-platform support and emulation, it was a non-starter.

Roll20 is still my favorite, because they have the widest product support for the games we play. When we switched to Eberron from Storm King's Thunder, it was just a quick visit to the Marketplace to purchase the materials we need, and we were off to the races. The game was up and running before everyone on the call could finish Venmo'ing me their part of the cost. But one of my Dungeon Masters wanted to use animated battle maps for his campaign, and Roll20's servers couldn't handle the file sizes. So we switched to...

FoundryVTT is the one we are currently using. It runs smoothly, but it is really frustrating if you want to use materials from newer, published sources. It seems like not all new WotC products get released for FoundryVTT, or they don't get released as quickly. There are gaps in the materials, and the quality and consistency varies widely between products. Running our game from my own computer instead of from a server is nice, but it also involves setting up a VPN and dealing with additional layers of security, permissions, and firewalls...only to end up using a Discord channel to handle voice, video, and screen sharing anyway.

Next month, it will be my turn to sit in the DM's chair for a while, and I'm leaning hard in the direction of Roll20. It's my favorite so far...but I'm open-minded enough to consider new and exciting products. Especially the ones that don't require me to also be an IT Specialist, data entry technician, and/or AV Engineer in addition to Dungeon Master.
 
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CleverNickName

Limit Break Dancing
Use and recommend are two different questions! I use one because that's what the rest of my group uses, but I'd recommend a different one!

Hmm, that's a good point.

Well, it's a multiple-choice poll, so...why not vote for both when applicable, and leave a comment to clarify?
 

beancounter

(I/Me/Mine)
AboveVTT

 




darjr

I crit!
Owlbear Rodeo I keep going back to. Does a simple job well and nothing more. Fantastic.

If I wan't to leverage something from DNDBeyond or use those fancy video backgrounds/battlemaps I'll use AboveVTT that works on top of the tools of DnDBeyond and can use youtube videos for battlemaps.
 


FG is my first choice. The automation is great, especially for more mechanically complex games like PF and SF where you want to track lots of ongoing effects. It has a bit more of a learning curve for things like coding effects, but most stuff is pretty straightforward. It also has great product support from most major game companies so it is very easy to get up an running with published adventures and such.

Roll20 is fine. It has the biggest user base so it is the best platform for finding groups, especially if you are looking for a very specify system or time. It also has great product support and decent tools. However, even having played on it for hundreds of hours, I still find the interface clunky and hard to navigate. Example: using Roll20 as a player recently to cast fireball I needed to 1) click on the fireball action on my character sheet 2) minimize the character sheet window so I could see the "spell" window that had opened up UNDER the character sheet window 3) click on the spell window to cast the spell 4) go to the sidebar and put it in "chat" view so I could see the damage I rolled.

I have only used Foundry for about a half dozen game sessions so I can't give an in-depth review. It has a great UI but the lack of support for published materials is big drawback.

I have looked at Owlbear Rodeo, and it seems great as a bare bones VTT. Having invested time and money in the more complex platforms I don't see why I would ever use it myself, but I would recommend it to anyone new to VTTs who wanted a no-fuss way to get started.
 



gamerprinter

Mapper/Publisher
I chose MapTools from RPTools, since it's a very powerful, customizeable virtual tabletop application and it's FREE - unlike most of the rest. That said, I don't need nor use Virtual Tabletop for my live home games, I design and print large format maps, we use miniatures and play on a live table. I do design VTT maps and map objects as a publisher, but not for my games.
 



Ramza

Explorer
I've used a number of the popular VTTs and haven't yet been convinced to move my preference away from Fantasy Grounds. I've been using it for over 15 years... well, first Fantasy Grounds and now Fantasy Grounds Unity. I keep rooting for all of them to get better so that it will put pressure on the others to improve as well.

Like some folks have mentioned above, if someone just wants a map with tokens, Owlbear handles that just fine. (I've played on it in a weekly campaign that went for a few months.) It doesn't do any of the cool stuff that Fantasy Grounds does, but if all you want is a map and tokens, have at it with Owlbear.
 

DM Greg

Villager
Fantasy Grounds. It is cross-platform agnostic on Linux, Mac, and Windows OS. I prefer playing on a desktop application instead of my web browser. The automation is amazing. The depth is ridiculous. Oh, and their library of the officially licensed content on their web store is incomparable.


If there are two vote options then it should be Fantasy Grounds Classic and Fantasy Grounds Unity. IMO it should only be one since Classic is no longer getting updates.
 

Moskin-Foz

Villager
Fantasy Grounds Unity.

The automation of tracking effects, licensed content, the community and developers are amazing!
Learning curve yes. But well worth it in the long run.

I understand the need for something simple, and browser oriented, but I would urge every DM to at least try FGU and then decide.
 

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