[Roll 20] Invisible GM notes on token layer

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Big Mac
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[Roll 20] Invisible GM notes on token layer

Post by Big Mac » Sat Feb 17, 2018 9:15 am

Jen Gagne from PIxelscapes has put up a Roll 20 tutorial called: Roll20 Tips: How to hide a GM-only note on the token layer. Here is what she says in the introduction to her article:
Jen Gagne from PIxelscapes wrote:When I run my D&D games in Roll20’s virtual tabletop, I put my room descriptions, trap info, or secret doors in hidden notes on the token layer — not the GM layer. Only I can see them. That way, I can double click on the note token and read my notes when the players get there, and it’s a nice visual reminder for exact trap locations.

Now, Roll20 does offer a GM layer, which is one place to park monster tokens and you could also put your notes there instead. But when running the game, why switch layers if you don’t have to? This approach gives me the options I want right where I want them: the token layer.
She then goes onto explain how she uses a transparent image, that is also invisible to players as something she can clone and put onto the various places on the token layer.

Do you use Roll 20?

Do you like using the GM layer?

Have you ever had problems switching between the GM layer and the token layer?

Do you think that PIxelscapes's tutorial could speed up your game?
David "Big Mac" Shepheard
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zontoxira
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Re: [Roll 20] Invisible GM notes on token layer

Post by zontoxira » Sat Feb 17, 2018 12:08 pm

Never had any issues with Token and GM layers. I use GM layer when numbering rooms, placing traps or hiding creatures, and overall anything that is not immediately noticeable. Pixelscape's approach seems a bit too much hassle to me.
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Re: [Roll 20] Invisible GM notes on token layer

Post by Big Mac » Sat Feb 17, 2018 12:33 pm

I think AuldDragon recently accidentally moved the GM layer he uses on his live-streamed Spelljammer game (so that things on it no longer lined up with the layer the PCs could see).

(I say "I think" as I can't see his layer, but he was taking about stuff not lining up properly, so that's my best guess. These notes seem like a way to avoid that risk.)

I wonder if this technique could be used to give hidden names to every (important) building on a city map, so that the GM could make the names visible to the players, when they eventually have visited a building enough times to know them.
David "Big Mac" Shepheard
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Re: [Roll 20] Invisible GM notes on token layer

Post by zontoxira » Sun Feb 18, 2018 11:51 am

If you're using a grid, that can become an issue, indeed. Especially when you're using text that tends to line up on the most inappropriate of places. And as far as I can tell, only background layer allows you to use Is Drawing, so you can place your map tokens however you want.

That would work if you have an unmarked city map as a hub, where the characters explore and reveal various areas, buildings, and important sites. Bloody hell, this could work with wilderness maps, too.
Have a look at my Dark Sun Reconstruction Project at Homebrewery or Dark Sun 5e files at Google Drive
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Re: [Roll 20] Invisible GM notes on token layer

Post by Big Mac » Wed Feb 21, 2018 12:10 pm

I guess that Jen Gagne's technique could be used by someone who wanted to pre-roll random encounters for hexes on a wilderness map. The GM could then get through the actual adventure session faster (which would be good if they were live-streaming) and re-roll any hexes they used after the end of the game*.

* = Assuming the PCs didn't meet a monster in it's lair and leave it alone.
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