Winter is coming!
My current Pen and paper gaming group is preparing for winter and we are looking for options to play, when the Mother Nature rears its ugly head. We currently use Maptool on a TV on the table for the mapping, and HeroLabs for the character sheets.
In the process of my research I stumbled upon Fantasy Grounds, and the Curse of the Crimson Thrones Module. This option is little bit higher in price then my normal gaming budget allows, but I am always willing to splurge for the good stuff. These however, have no real reviews online (that I could find). For those that have not seen this, it appears to do most of the Pre-Set up work. In theory this would translate into time savings.
Has anybody ever played this specific Fantasy Grounds module, and if so, do you have any sort of review you could say about it?
Or any suggestions for other VTT options, as we are also reviewing the other usual suspects (roll20, d20pro, Table Top Simulator etc…) just don’t want to go through blowing the budget and a learning curve if there are better ways.
Thanks in advance!
I am running it right now in FG. Like it a lot.
There is almost too much stuff available as they convert every single paragraph into the online modules. you have to spend quite a bit of time reading ahead and making sure you know where everything is and how FG works. If you don't you will spend a lot of time clicking around trying to find stuff.
Other than that, it is great.
I have no reason to regret spending the money.
I'm running CotCT on fantasy grounds too, and it's been a blast, my group is used to fantasy grounds now as it's our second campaign on this software, but everything has been converted, and if you still feel like you're missing on something (for exemple i know my players always want to see pictures of the monsters they fight or something like that), then you can always add your own material.
It's a little tricky to use at first and you will probably need a few hours to find everything you're looking for, but when you do, it'll be a very good experience.
Expect sluggishness during the first few sessions though hehe
I've been running my Musketeers of the Crimson Throne in D20 Pro. I'm a longtime user of D20 Pro in its various versions - nearly eight years now.
In order to prep modules for D20 Pro, you use your own artwork manipulation skills to get the maps into the program. So you will want the PDF version of the Anniv edition at hand. The data for the encounters are purchased from Lone Wolf in Herolab format. You then import them into Herolab and save them off for import into D20Pro (you don't need an uber "full" version of Herolab for this; just the AP encounter file for CotCT). If you already have the PDF for CotCT, this is a lot cheaper than buying it for FG.
But it's more work. The graphical results in D20Pro are WAY better though than any other VTT and you know how the adventure is constructed - to a TEE - as the process of placing those encounters and putting it all together serves as the ultimate tutorial.
I used Fantasy Grounds off and on for a decade and most recently last year (for a time) for running Call of Cthulhu Masks of Nyarlothotep. As a longtime user of D20Pro, every limitation of FG just had me howling in frustration. I must admit, I really came to loathe FG.
But at the same time, D20Pro takes some work getting used to. I vastly prefer it; but it costs money. Its more powerful features (and it is WAY more powerful than any other VTT) also take time to learn. Its interface doesn't look as pretty and its dice aren't as splashy (FG's nicest feature). But everything else about it is graphically superior from the end user's perspective. It's a 64 bit program so it doesn't have the memory limitations that FG's 32 bit engine has. (FG's memory limitations drive me NUTS.)
I recommend D20 Pro for hardcore Pathfinder VTT users. It shines brightest in Pathfinder. The graphical excellence and new rules sets are impressive and outstrip any other VTT. But there's a learning curve. You also have to get to know how to use GIMP2 or Photoshop as well as Herolab to get the most out of it. For many users, this is something they aren't big fans of. YMMV.
Worth noting as well that if you link your Paizo account to your FG account and you have the Anniversary Edition PDF you get a huge discount on the FG package.
I bought the Curse FG package in the last couple of weeks just because with the discount it was too good a price to ignore, knowing how well Smite Works put this stuff together (I have RotR and some of Kingmaker in FG too).
Agree with Steff as well that you need to familiarise yourself with it and develop your own way of using it as there is just so much material you could get lost in it.