What is Tabletop Forge?
Tabletop Forge is a virtual tabletop application that lives inside of a Google+ Hangout. The application allows you to play pen & paper roleplaying games as well as strategy/board games online with other players from around the world.
With a host of useful features, we hope to support as many game types as possible:
- Robust dice rolling
- Battle maps with grid overlays
- Tokens with editable fields
- Macros for storing frequently used commands
- Custom tables so you can roll from user created lists or card decks
These features, combined with the integrated video conferencing already included in Google+ Hangouts, provides what we feel is an experience that closely matches face-to-face tabletop gaming.
Why are you doing a Kickstarter?
Tabletop Forge started as a hobby project. While it is perfectly usable in its current form, we want to take it to a professional level. The primary use of the Kickstarter funds will be to purchase art assets to use directly in the application. Instead of hunting for an encounter map for that surprise tavern fight, we want you to be able to just choose a tavern map you like and load it directly in the app. We want tokens for all the generic fantasy creatures (like goblins), as well as modern/sci-fi tokens like guards and ships.
Besides empowering players, we believe in supporting indie artists, writers and game designers. A large chunk of our KickStarter money will go back into the community, to people like Jonathan Roberts and Devin Night, so we can secure the rights to use their creations in Tabletop Forge.
We will also bring more programmers and designers on board to polish the features and user experience of Tabletop Forge and make sure it works smoothly and intuitively. Again, wherever possible we will hire from within, finding artists, designers, and programmers from within the RPG community.
So what do I get for supporting Tabletop Forge?
We have a ton of excellent Kickstarter rewards including some fun maps, tokens, and other assets that will be available to backers only. If we hit our goal, we have plans to bring in new content like maps, tokens, and more as stretch goals.
After months of adventuring you have reached the fabled Tabletop Forge and slain the blacksmiths who guarded it. As your reward, you may now take one item from their enchanted armory.
Why Tabletop Forge versus other virtual tabletops?
We admit there are other cool virtual tabletops out there but the primary reason we started developing Tabletop Forge was because of the awesome RPG community that exists on Google+. Even before the first line of code was written for our app, there were a steady stream of people playing pickup games on Google+ Hangouts using separate dice rollers. We wanted to give those gamers a tool so they could have the whole package in one place and solve the issues they were having. Now instead of seeing a handful of games a week we are seeing dozens, and that number is continuing to grow.
The main advantage of an online virtual tabletop is that it allows for games to be started quickly with no installation and port forwarding necessary. We also feel that our feature set matches up to some of the other popular virtual tabletops and we are improving the application daily.
We also have a lot of support from indie game designers evidenced by all the cool Kickstarer rewards they are offering. Our goal is to enable a wide range of gaming styles, and not tie Tabletop Forge to one specific system.
For example, although we have great map features (and more on the way), we do not want the app to revolve solely around gridded maps. We want to support features common to indie games like atmosphere, index cards, token/chit mechanics, and more.
We already have commitments that once we have an in-game store up and running, you will be able to purchase games, adventures, maps, tokens, and more from the game designers and artists for use directly in the app.
No matter what, Tabletop Forge itself is going to remain free because this is a product we feel that the community deserves and we want to encourage new gamers in the hobby.
Stretch Goal #1
Stretch Goal #2
Stretch Goal #3
Stretch Goal #4
Final Stretch Goal
The first part of this stretch goal is going to be a complete fantasy setting for use with Tabletop Forge along with 4 adventures. The fine folks at White Haired Man they are taking their system neutral setting Kith’takharos and packaging it in a PDF for reference directly in the app. They are also taking 4 adventures (previously design for both 3.5 and Savage Worlds) and providing these for everyone who uses Tabletop Forge. As I have personally playtested a couple of these adventures I think they will be a great addition to our line up of great assets.
The second part of the stretch goal is going to be 20 issues of Toys for the Sandbox by Occult Moon. Toys for the Sandbox is an ongoing series providing system agnostic story hooks, locations, and NPCs in a framework designed to help a GM insert them easily into any game system. We will be getting a mix of fantasy and sci-fi issues and they will be available directly in the application for everyone.
The last part of this stretch goal is something we are personally excited about and if it happens will be bringing aboard a new member to the Tabletop Forge team. If we can hit this final stretch goal we will be including 3D dice that you can roll with the mouse complete with a physics engine. We think web technology is far enough along that we can attempt this and that this feature will help the application feel more like playing at a real tabletop. This kind of feature has been relegated to the desktop space in other virtual tabletops and we hope to bring it to the masses online.
- (30 days)