So you're new to maptool and you're looking at an empty field of grass wondering what maptool has to offer and how to forge your own campaign in it. Below is a full overview of tutorials, vids, introductions, references etc showing you what maptool is, has and can do for you.
If you fully want to use maptool I would suggest to start at the top and work your way to the bottom.
First off: welcome to Rptools-Maptool I hope you enjoy your stay here!
The thing that nearly every experienced maptool user will tell you is that when you start using Maptool, follow these steps, take a couple of sessions before going to the next step: 1. first use it as a white board. You can make simple drawings on the background, place tokens on it and move them around, this already is ideal for e.g. battles. Its useful to create a new map as there are some settings, like grid type (square/hex/none) and distance per cell (e.g. 5 feet per square), which you might want to edit before use. For dice rolls you can use the chat. There is a list of simple chat commands e.g. /w "john" hi (which sends/whispers the message "hi" only to the player john) and dice rolls e.g. [3d6+2] (which rolls 3 six sided dice, adds them and adds 3 to the total). 2. start giving the tokens stats (Strenght, Toughness, etc.) per default every token already has a list of stats but you can change these and of course edit them. Very useful for example for tracking wounds. 3. start introducing VBL (vision blocking layer). This is where the learning curve starts to bend upwards (rather steep). I've been using maptool for 5 years now, and I think most people here will see me as an experienced user and last session I had issues with VBL and vision due to a setting I overlooked. There are an insane amount of different settings which can be really daunting to get right, but it *does* grant you the opportunity to get it right for *your* style of game play. Quid pro quo. Check the vids! 4. I guess by now you will be ready to get some macro running. Simple macros can contain stuff like: I hit with my Greataxe and roll [1d20+BaseAttack+Strength] This is typically a macro that is placed ON the PC token which has the properties (stats) 'BaseAttack' and 'Strength' defined. 5. Once you get used to that and have a couple of these macros, you can start looking for existing frameworks (there are a lot of them) that fit your game. 6. Most will never reach this point, but some do (especially if 5 is not an option): start creating your own framework...
EXTERNAL TOOLS (used outside of maptool) MapScaleTool - excel sheet to help you scale your map image to align with the grid Table Editor Tool - excel sheet whith which you can create Maptool Tables FAST ! Light source editor - excel sheet to create complex lightsources Notepad++ for Maptools - Colored keywords config file which is VERY helpful when creating or editing macros !!
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