GM Doug H's page

8,323 posts. Alias of Doug Hahn.


Enmity: Maps & Handouts | Macros | Hero Points


SoT (Grad School Year 1, Sem. 1): Maps, Handouts, Macros

About GM Doug H

My goal is for you to have fun while playing a balanced game.


Post at least once a day and once on weekends (if players want to keep things moving over the weekend, I'm game). I am more active than many other PbP GMs and am willing to post multiple times per day keep things at a good clip.

Maturity and communicativeness go a long way: 2E has components that do not always translate smoothly into the PbP medium; let's be kind to one another and willing to embrace learning opportunities.


Guides I've authored

Benchmarks by Level for your Characters
Intro to Play by Post
Paizo avatar gallery
Ten Habits of Good Online Players
Unofficial OPF Guides (boons, FaQs, errata, guides, and more)

Other Resources

Some of these are geared towards 1E, but the fundamentals of PbP are still relevant whatever system you're using:

The Flaxseed Pathfinder Lodge
Painlord's Advanced PbP Play
Doomed Hero's Guide to PbP Gaming
Pregens in BBCode


There are many ways to structure your character's taglines. It doesn't matter so long as everything is clear for your GM. Here are the templates I use, which go in the the race and Gender fields:)

Race Field wrote:
GENDER CLASS LEVEL | Perc +X (SENSES) | Speed: X' | HP: X/Y | AC: X (NOTES) | Fort: +X Ref: +X Will: +X (NOTES)
Gender wrote:
|Spells: Foc:X/Y; 1: X/Y | Exploration: ACTIVITY | Status: CURRENT_STATUS | Hero Points: X

In your character profile, please include the complete stat block.

As a colorblind person I cannot always distinguish color-coded borders, especially ones like red and green; I use shapes to differentiate enemies and players. At my table all PCs have round tokens, and all enemies have square tokens. Enemies of the same type have numbered tokens. If you have any impairments that prevent you from being able to distinguish tokens, please let me know and I will do what I can to accommodate.

How do I make round tokens?

I can help you wit this, but you can do it yourself too!

Making Round tokens in Slides:
Slides has an Image Mask option in the top menu.

1. Select the image
2. Select the Image Mask option and select the circle shape option
3. Add a border to the now-masked image
4. Select your preferred weight and color

Gif Video Example


Include botting instructions in your profile. If you have a preference for who runs your character, write that down too. If you or your preferred botter have not posted in more than 24 hours, I may bot your character to keep the game moving. Generally, I will bot conservatively, maximizing safety and resources.


I will roll all Initiative checks for PCs and NPCs, sort them, and organize them into blocks. I will bold the names of characters whose turn it is to act.

When it is your turn to act, post. Do not wait for someone else to post just because they had a higher Initiative within your initiative block. If you know what you want to do but are waiting for someone else’s action first, just say that. For example,

Mete Sheeld wrote:

Mete Sheeld knows to stay out of Brock Enrol's way, so he'll attack after her. He then strides up to Dee Monic and strikes twice!

[dice=Club, Strike 1]1d20 + 2[/dice]
[dice=Club, Strike 2]1d20 + 2 - 5[/dice]
[dice=Bludgeoning, Strike 1]1d6 + 2 + 1[/dice]
[dice=Bludgeoning, Strike 2]1d6 + 2 + 1[/dice]

To encourage timely posting I will retroactively include bonuses for allies who are in the same initiative block, even if one player posts before getting that bonus. For example, if the fighter posts right before the bard, and the bard then uses the Inspire Courage cantrip, I will retroactively include the bonus.


Reactions can be tricky in play-by-post. Preemptively roll reactions and designate their trigger on your turn. (It might help you to make a macro for this, or save text that you can copy/paste somewhere.) For example:

Mete Sheeld wrote:

If someone moves through a threatened square:

[dice=Club, Strike 1]1d20 + 2[/dice]
[dice=Bludgeoning, Strike 1]1d6 + 2 + 1[/dice]

If you have multiple reactions, note your preference on which one you will take and what the triggers are. For example:

Brock Enroll wrote:

Brock has his shield raised and if Big Bad hits and does over 15 damage, he will block. However, if Mook walks through a threatened square after Big Bad goes, he'll take an AOO:

[dice=Club, Strike 1]1d20 + 2[/dice]
[dice=Bludgeoning, Strike 1]1d6 + 2 + 1[/dice]

I will work with you to keep the game flowing smoothly.


Include the modifiers and damage types in your dice rolls. For example

Mete Sheeld wrote:

[dice=Shortsword, Strike 1, Inspire Courage, Frightened 2]1d20 + 6 + 1 - 2[/dice]

[dice=Piercing, Inspired][dice]1d6+4+1[/dice]

is better than

Mete Sheeld wrote:



Making Rolls More Friendly for the Colorblind

I am colorblind. Please place attack damage rolls on a new line; it is already difficult for me to parse the green dice text on white background, and putting each dice roll on a separate line helps me a lot.

This is a small courtesy to your GM (and fellow players who may also have vision impairments), and one I greatly appreciate. If you have any needs that should be accommodated, I will always do my best to help you have a comfortable game. Just let me know.


Clarity is important, but so is flavor and narrative! You can use OOC text to highlight game mechanics while keeping things flavorful in "normal" text:

Brock Enrol wrote:
Brock Enrol sings an arcane word and then flicks a dollop of butter at the aberration. Grease (V, M); DC 16 Reflex save.

This is both flavorful from a story perspective, and clear from a mechanical perspective.


When asked to roll a save, it must always be the first dice roll on your next post, or if necessary rolled in the narrative order of operations. If you do not follow this rule, I will roll the save for you.

Please fill out the scenario's Google sheet with any skills you want to be rolled secretly. I will not make rolls for you if you do not fill out the skill on the sheet.

In combat, I will nest spoilers for knowledge checks where possible, as it's a necessity of keeping combat moving in PbP. It's human nature to metagame — but not to cheat. I expect all my players to act maturely and not cheat at Pathfinder. Do not read GM Screen spoilers (it's ok to read some spoilers labeled as "attacks" and such, or spoilers for checks after you roll and beat the DC), and lean into failure! In fact, embracing failure and having fun with it will probably earn you a hero point, helping you in the longer term from both an optimization and roleplay standpoint!

IN PF2E you know when you fail a check and can then decide whether to use a hero point. This mechanic doesn't translate well to play-by-post, however, as we have to keep the game moving at a reasonable clip.

If you think you failed a save or skill check, preemptively roll your hero point to keep the game moving. If you end up not needing it, then you will not have spent the Hero Point.


Please post rules questions in the discussion thread. Try not to interrupt the flow of gameplay. I am also happy to start a Google Hangouts or a channel in Slack / Discord for ooc conversation. In fact, I believe these channels can greatly enhance a PbP game — especially if it's a high-level endeavor, a module, or a complex scenario.

I am also willing to help you with any questions or concerns that you may have in private, and always open to constructive suggestions!