Written by Jeremy Morgan, tabletop games editor, gamer, and software developer.
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The D&D Virtual Table

5 January 2011

Update: Added link to guest post by Sarah Darkmagic at

So I’ve now had the opportunity to play with the D&D virtual table beta a little bit. I’ve read a few blog posts about the virtual table (some of which are linked below), but I thought I’d chime in with a few more thoughts. Some of these I haven’t seen anyone specifically mention, probably because I’m pondering it as a replacement for the D&D 3.5e campaign I am currently playing in. It would replace a home-brew JavaScript battle grid one of the other players wrote and instant messaging with Skype.

First, what the virtual table does well. It was fairly easy to take an existing encounter map that my group is currently using and recreate it using the selection of tiles available. I was able to input the characters and our current initiative order without too much trouble (more on that below). I’ve not had the occasion to use any other online game tables until now, but the consensus I’ve read is that the virtual table delivers the core functionality needed in an application of this nature.

With that out of the way, I’ll move on to the criticisms, which I intend to be constructive. Most of these are minor, nice-to-have features. They certainly will not keep me from using it if they are missing.

  • No way to tell what size a monster token is. This isn’t a deal breaker, but it is definitely a feature I’d like to see before virtual table goes live.
  • I’d like a way to enter initiatives directly without having to roll.
  • It would be very nice to be able to add all monsters on the map and have initiatives to go with them, either by rolling or entering directly or both.
  • The virtual table should be able to account for characters and monsters that have the same initiative order. This is a frequent occurrence and needs to be addressed.
  • This last one is something I’d love to see but is probably self-serving on my part. I would like to be able to export the chat log.

All in all, I’ve been very pleased with the virtual table thus far. Below are some other posts that I’ve found very helpful.

Has anyone else had any experience with the virtual table? Have you tried running any older editions of D&D with it?


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