I'm designing a web app to make RPGs easier and more accessible. I've been introducing a lot of people to tabletop RPGs, and people are intimidated by the time it takes to create a character and the books full of rules.
Any suggestions for things that could be made easier? The basic concept so far is:
*An online character sheet that comes with a built in wizard/tutorial (like starting a video game), and where you can click on stats for the appropriate rolls (so you don't have to memorize them).
*A story app for designing and saving story assets (characters, locations, maps, pictures, etc). Eventually, I'd also like to set up a resource-sharing site where GMs can give, trade, or sell story assets they've developed.
*A game session, which loads the characters and the story, allows for private messages, GM requested rolls, automated combat (and other) rolls, and applying effects (bonuses, penalties, etc).
It seems like Virtual Tabletops main idea is to make a game playable online, while I'd like to focus on making games easier to pick up and smoother to play (you don't stop to look up charts). These apps could be used to play games over the internet, or just as an aid to reduce set-up and chart-examining in live games. For example, Fantasy Grounds is all about playing over the internet. Yes, you can have dice macros, but you need to lookin the book to know how to define them, have separate rolls for hitting and damage, and then manually apply the damage to the target. In these apps, you would click you target, click your attack, and it could automatically roll to hit, damage, and subtract hit points (unless you specify that you want manual control).
Any additional RPG pet-peeves or rough spots I should address in the app?
(If you like the idea so far, read more and vote for it here, and I can win $5,000 to develop the app! Voting does require email confirmation, but they don't spam, just send the confirmation link.)
It's a noble concept, and I wish you luck. But a big part of me wishes that the app just brought up the relevant page that advises the game master and players to just make something up for now and look up the exact rule later if necessary. Every game has at least one.
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