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Thinking of Joining Roll20? Lock In Your Sub Now!

Roll20 is increasing its monthly sub from $4.99 to $5.99 per month, but you can lock in the lower price by signing up before July 1st.
  • Monthly Plus subs go from $4.99 to $5.99l Annual Plus subs go from $49.99 to $59.99
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If you subscribe before July 1st, you get locked in to the old price for two years. I can't promise you'll be as good-looking as the folks in the screenshot, though!


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Russ Morrissey

Russ Morrissey

You are joking right? Unless they have changed Foundry in the last 6 months, many people can’t just copy and paste the link, have the program running on your computer and people be able to get access.


Frankly as soon as people are advising you to change port settings on your laptop, over-rule firewalls, download shareware or sign up for additional hosting services beyond that are then a monthly fee, then you've just lost me as a customer.

The company needs to provide official guidance but of course they won’t do this as the guidance could leave you device exposed and they don’t want the liability.
Okay, think of it this way. They have a one time purchase price, but they have partners offering hosting (so you and your players don’t have to deal with that mess if you aren’t comfortable doing so), that costs equal to or less than the comparable Roll20 subscription. You can compare it that way and say it costs around the same for a subscription plus a $50 upfront cost for the GM (players have no cost). And for the tech savvy, it offers an option to self-host without a subscription. They present it the opposite way, but for comparison purposes this is likely a better way to look at it.
 

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TheSword

Legend
Supporter
Okay, think of it this way. They have a one time purchase price, but they have partners offering hosting (so you and your players don’t have to deal with that mess if you aren’t comfortable doing so), that costs equal to or less than the comparable Roll20 subscription. You can compare it that way and say it costs around the same for a subscription plus a $50 upfront cost for the GM (players have no cost). And for the tech savvy, it offers an option to self-host without a subscription. They present it the opposite way, but for comparison purposes this is likely a better way to look at it.
Sure. I might as well just cut out the middle man though and use a hosting system that doesn’t require me to spend $50 up front.

Still nobody has elaborated on the elements that make Foundry so much better. At the moment it seems to be whether a particular system Pathfinder/WFRP/D&D etc is supported properly... and very little else.
 

Daemini

Explorer
It's not a matter of whether or not they produce a system I like-- it's the fact that they don't consider other people with visual or reading difficulties, perhaps more severe than my own, important enough to produce a system they can use. That is, in my opinion, entirely sufficient to justify calling them a "garbage company" and I might ask you to take a moment and reflect if you really want to argue that it isn't.
There is a UI Scale which makes your fonts bigger, you can have them as big as one word per screen if your having difficulty seeing.
 

Delazar

Adventurer
while we're comparing VTTs, has anyone had any experience with AboveVTT?
one of my players has a DnD Beyond subscription, and this AboveVTT is just a plug-in that let's you use DDB as a VTT.
I was impressed by how easy to use it was.
 

univoxs

That's my dog, Walter
Supporter
I am excited to move to Talespire or Realm Engine in the future. I will miss being able to grab an image for a map and drop it in easily, or use a hand drawn map I scanned in, or one I made in Dungeondraft. I recently purchased the RotRL $60 pack for Roll20. Worth it to me to not have to remake all that stuff by hand. Very tedious.

Roll20 has been fun but the community there has been a bummer. I gave up trying to play with anyone recruited through either their site, FB group or subreddit. Always horrible flaky people every time. I would attribute my failure rate to me normally, because if you have a problem with EVERYONE you should try looking at yourself but my normal players are perfectly happy so I think I will put this one on the community.

What I want is something for VR. The players see from their characters in first person with the ability to look around them 360 but can only move there characters on their turns etc, while the GM can see from a top down view. Definitely a lot of things would need to be worked out because of certain spell effects but I think it is all doable now if someone took the time to make it. That person wont be me though.
 

Shroompunk Warlord

Archdruid of the Warp Zones
There is a UI Scale which makes your fonts bigger, you can have them as big as one word per screen if your having difficulty seeing.
Well, one, that's not the issue-- I don't need the text to be bigger, I need it to not be dark text on a dark background.

Two, have you actually tried what you're describing? It pushes other UI elements off the screen and makes them inaccessible.
 

MNblockhead

A Title Much Cooler Than Anything on the Old Site
I've used Roll20, Foundry, d20pro, Fantasy Ground (Classic and Unity), Role, Astral, and good old Map Tool. I've loved and hated them all.

As a player, I really like Roll20. It's find-a-game system has been a life-line to the hobby during my long stints overseas. It works from every country I've tried it and is generally stable, even with crap Internet connections. But as a DM, I hated prepping games with it. First, I was trying to prep a mega dungeon with hundreds of maps, and even at the expensive subscription levels, it couldn't handle the data sizes. Second, I find map prep with it inconvenient. Third, there is very little customization you can do with Roll20.

I really made the college try with Fantasy Grounds, because I wanted to have as much of the work done for running D&D games done for me and nothing matches FG for that. But I couldn't get the game server to work from the mid-east without a VPN and over less-than-great internet, I had enough trouble downloading the assets in-game as a player. There was no way I could run games as a GM. Further, I really didn't want to have to carry two computers around, but couldn't install games on my work computer, so having something hosted made more sense.

That's also why d20pro was a no go. Even though I like its simpler interface and decent support for 5e.

I ended up with Foundry, hosted by the Forge. What I love:
  • I can take my license and go to another hosting provider or host it myself if I ever want to.
  • My current hosting provider (The Forge) offers good performance, great service, and a decent price. Any assets you download from their Bazaar doesn't count towards your storage costs. At my subscription plan, I've been able to load a lot of data in terms of hundreds of maps, thousands of tokens, world anvil content, and D&D Beyond content.
  • There are so many community developed modules that allow incredible customization of the platform, more than any other VTT.
  • I'm able to bring all my D&D Beyond content into it, so I don't have to pay for it a third time to use it in my VTT
  • I'm able to bring in content from World Anvil
  • Prepping maps for dynamic lighting, etc. is the easiest of any VTT I've used. I actually enjoy it now.
What I hate:
  • Because there is no official WOTC license with professionally prepared assets, everything is based on community developed game systems and modes. I still don't have things set up the way I want so I can just do everything in the VTT and I still primarily use it just for map display, fog of war, etc.

  • The trouble with moding is that some stop being developed and some conflict with each other. Maintaining and futzing around with Foundry becomes another hobby onto itself. If you are the type that liked moding Skyrim and other PC video games, you'll probably love Foundry. If you play your video games on console and want to just sit down and play, then Foundry will be frustrating.
WITH ALL VTTs, I find the best experience is when you can buy an adventure that is all pre-prepped. I've run some adventures prepared fully by other people and it was amazing. But my main campaign is not available all prepped on any VTT that I'm aware of. So I never use all the bells and whistles of any VTT because it is just too much damn work to prep.
 

On the contrary, I'd say that their model is accelerating their growth.

Having to pay 50$ once and never again is much more interesting then having to pay a smaller amount each month indefinitely and not owning anything that you put on their servers.

It does require a bit more tinkering from the part of the GM to set up things the first time though, non-tech savy people will have a harder time.
The problem is that that can become unsustainable. Subscription encourages more development, and subscription also can pay the server bills during the whole life of the project. One time life memberships do neither.
 

TheAlkaizer

Game Designer
The problem is that that can become unsustainable. Subscription encourages more development, and subscription also can pay the server bills during the whole life of the project. One time life memberships do neither.
Many softwares absolutely fund their whole development through one-time purchases. Most well-known softwares actually did for years and decades. If you have a team of a thousand people working on a suite, then yes, it's unsustainable unless you launch a new version every year. For a small development team? It absolutely is possible. By the time it becomes unsustainable, can have reached maturity. Something like a VTT doesn't have to be forever in development. It's only a tool, Foundry has an open API and most of its value is driven by third-party developers and assets. Development on it could stop and it could still see use for many years.
 


MNblockhead

A Title Much Cooler Than Anything on the Old Site
This requires supporting the developer’s Patreon, right? Which is probably still worth it for a month, but worth noting. (And correct me if it doesn’t.)
There are a couple of developers that provide this functionality. Mr. Primate requires support via Patreon to get the monthly key, but provides the best bulk import. VTTA Assets uses Patreon for updates and support, but I think you can continue using the Chrome add-in and Foundry module without monthly support.

Those who use The Forge to host their instance of Foundry will soon have access to D&D Beyond integration but it is still in alpha and I'm afraid to use it.

Since I don't care about adventure import and only need character, item, spell, and monster import, Mr. Primate's importer has best met my needs.
 

Retreater

Legend
I really dislike D&D Beyond, so until there's some D&D support for Foundry that isn't tied to D&D Beyond, I won't use it for 5e.
I'm at the point now where I was trying to get into Foundry but realized the features it adds are bells and whistles that just aren't needed for my games. (Ambient sound effects, animated snow, etc.) It's better for PF2 because it actually has almost all of the content available, but unless you're doing a complex system like PF2, it just doesn't seem worth it. And if Roll20 would put the PF2 content on there, it definitely wouldn't be worth it to learn a new VTT that is more complex in every facet.
 

Zaukrie

New Publisher
I'm always amazed so few people mention Astral, as it looks great.

I'm currently testing five 3d systems, but none of them have good support for gaming. What they have is a very different feel sure to bring 3d. Hoping to have multiple videos up soon comparing them all.

I am a player on roll20. It's fine, but not great. I have a Foundry license, but my group broke up, and so haven't really tested it.
 

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