JRR TOKEN

Here are the tokens.

I’m running a 2e module called “A Darkness Gathering,” which… hang on a second–

*SPOILER ALERT*

Right, let’s just get that out of the way. So, it’s the first of a three-part series of modules where the party discovers a mind flayer plot to darken all the suns in the universe. It’s actually quite a bit more complicated than that, but that’s the gist of it.

So, in the first part, the players discover the plot. In the second, they have to find and repair an illithid spelljammer. And in the third, they travel to the mind flayers’ homeworld, find an artifact, kick in the door of the sun-destroying machine and blow it up. Then they walk away from the explosion in slow motion. Wearing sunglasses.

It’s a great story and I’ve wanted to run it for a long time. And now I am. Feels good man.

More tokens from my game. The party is in Chult, which means we are go for dinosaur cavalry.

These tokens are huge spoilers for my game, but I’ve banned my players from my site and my patreon so I can give them to you. Download them from my patreon here or from my Google Drive.

The party is deep in the jungles of Chult, having just found their way to the Hidden Shrine of Tamoachan. If you’re running that, this is nearly all the tokens you need, by the way. The dinosaur cavalry is something I made for an encounter along the way. The party’s paladin is a jungle dwarf who worships Thard Harr and he just got Find Steed, so I decided to give him a deinonychus, which is the smaller of the dinosaurs up there. It’s powerful, sure, but it’s one of those things that’s going to be much less of a big deal in a few levels. Plus, I’m a very stingy DM when it comes to magic items, so there’s room to do stuff like this.

My philosophy with magical stuff is, when I give the party an item, I want it to be meaningful and I want them to feel special for having it. I don’t want a player to check if this magic sword is better than their current magic sword. I want them to go, “Holy crap, I have a magic sword!”

While I don’t give the PCs magic items often, when I do, they are the hotness and I don’t think it underpowers the party much. One side effect is that everyone can get through their turns quicker in combat because they know what their options are. It takes forever when players have to look over a thousand different options every turn because their gloves can cast three different spells, their axe can cast two, their ring can cast four and their other ring lets them do some other crap.  When a player only gets a new item every 6-8 sessions at most, they have time to learn what it does and they can keep track of their options more easily. The barbarian isn’t the only one who can get through their turn in under a minute (“Groknar frenzy. Groknar smash monster with axe forty-seven times. Groknar finished”).

Anyway, that’s how I handle it. I’m interested to hear your thoughts about it if you have any or if you do things differently and it works out for you.

The High Temple of Mystra is coming along. It’s about halfway inked and it should be done by the weekend. It’s a big one. All right, I’m gonna get back on it!

My first VTT session went great! Also, here’s the tokens I made for my next session.

 

First, here are the tokens.

All in all, it felt a lot like DMing offline. Previously, my impression was that Roll20 was much more automated than it is. But it mostly just rolls dice and adds modifiers. You’ve got to determine if the rolls succeed or fail, add or subtract hp and do pretty much everything else yourself, which I like. Thanks again for everyone’s advice! I’m sure it wouldn’t have gone nearly as smoothly without your tips.

So, I made these tokens for my next session. They’re kind of a weird selection, I know, but they’re what I need. The goblin is a character you might remember if you’ve ever run LMoP: Droop. My players made friends with him and now he’s, like, their mascot or something. I made some goblin tokens before, but I needed an unarmed goblin. Droop is a lover, not a fighter.

The bear is actually for the druid. She took the shapeshifting path and she’s able to turn into a brown bear early, which means… well, she gets some work done. After she slaughtered her way through Cragmaw Castle, I described her as looking like the back seat of the car in Pulp Fiction. So the bloody one is her: nature’s brutal killing machine.

Originally, I just drew one stirge, but they’re tiny and I decided that only letting one fight in a 5-foot area seemed crazy, so I made a flock. I’m putting three of those things on one tile and if the D&D police want to lock me up for it, they can come and get me.

I’m working on the next map, which is based on the library of Gravenhollow from Out of the Abyss. It’s supposedly so complex and changing that it’d be impossible to make a map of it. Challenge accepted. After that, Brazenthrone.

BOATS!

So, I don’t know if ship tokens are actually a thing anyone uses or wants, but I hope they are because I made a bunch of them. If they’re not, well, they were only an hour’s work, so no big deal.

Originally, I’d planned to make tokens out of the ships from the Vlyn’darastyl map, but they were too small, so I used boats I drew for other maps instead. The only one I drew specifically for this was the Century Pelican, which I figured might be useful too.

Anyway, I’m about to start my first session on Roll20 later today. Thanks to everyone for the advice about how to get started! I’ve got everything set up: the maps, the tokens, the macros, the discord and all the rest. Let’s hope it goes smoothly. And good luck to any other first-timers out there as well! We will screw this up together.

The tokens are free, as is everything else this month. You can get them from this post on the patreon or from Google Drive.

Thanks to everyone for the advice! Here are some more tokens I made for my game.

Here’s the link to download.

First of all, if you’re one of my players, go away. Stop reading.

Okay, so I’ve got most of the next map done, but I’ve been making these tokens for my game on the side and– NIAMH, STOP READING– I thought I’d share. We’ve got two different flavors of goblin, an orc, a hobgoblin which *ahem* may or may not just be a red version of the orc, a bugbear, a wolf, a grick and an owlbear.

It’s an odd selection, I know, but it’s what I need for my first online session, which is Cragmaw Castle in Lost Mine of Phandelver. Yeah, I know. I feel like a Scumbag Steve meme: Draws Brazenthrone — Runs LMOP for his friends. But I don’t have time to draw Brazenthrone and write material from scratch for it, so I’m running the game I’m able to run at the moment. And everyone seems to be having a good time, which is the main thing.

Anyway, thanks again to everyone for the advice you gave me on getting started with Roll20! So far, I’ve got the map set up for the first session and I’ve got all the necessary tokens in there. I just need to watch some tutorials on running combat, put the stats and HP on the tokens and program in the players’ sheets (unfortunately, everyone left their sheets at my place, ugh). Still, it’s going pretty well so far and we should be ready to go for next weekend!

VTT DMs: I need your advice. I bring you this humble offering of character tokens in return.

 

First: your tokens.

For most people, D&D time is chill time and I don’t want to let The Stressful Topic You Can’t Get Away From intrude on that. So I’ll just leave it at this: my game needs to go online. And that means I need to learn to DM on Roll20. The question I have is: Where do I start?

There’s a lot out there to learn from, which is good, but it also means there’s a lot to sort through and, since we’re not talking about 5-minute videos, I’d appreciate any suggestions you might have on what video series or tutorials helped you learn the basics and got you to the point where you felt comfortable running a game.

While I’m sure there’s a strong case to be made for Fantasy Grounds, I’ve used Roll20 as a player, so I feel like it’d be easier for me to learn. Still, if you have suggestions for learning FG, please do post them. I’m far from the only DM looking to take their game online right now and some people might be more interested in learning Fantasy Grounds.

So, the tokens. They’re not the fanciest tokens out there, but I wanted to keep them simple so they’d look good shrunk down. The top row is my party. Starting from the left, there’s the gnomish druid, the dwarven paladin, the elven wizard, the monk, the ranger and the halfling rogue.

The second row is alternate versions for anyone who might need darker-skinned characters. Or, in the case of the monk, lighter-skinned (our monk is Zakharan). The third and fourth rows are drow/duergar and greenskins, which are the other two common D&D skin tones. These are super easy to recolor, so I thought I’d try to make them as flexible as I can. Anyway, I hope you like them and thanks in advance for any advice.

If you have advice but you don’t want to use the comment system here (because it’s stupid), you can just leave a comment on the patreon or email me.