Make maps for roll20

Make maps for roll20 DEFAULT

A Beginner’s Guide to Roll20

What follows is a short guide to using my 2-Minute Tabletop maps, assets, and tokens with the Roll20 virtual tabletop.

This guide will only cover the very basics required to get you started with my content, and is designed for those new to the platform who might be paralyzed by the many tools and features on Roll20 and want to know where to start.

I have split this tutorial into four sections to cover each of the main kinds of content that I create; battle maps, map assets, tokens, spell templates, and set pieces. Let’s get into it!


Importing Battle Maps

Some of my most convenient pieces are battle maps, exciting top-down scenes fit for a combat encounter or skill challenge. Click here to browse my battle maps – you may want to download one for free and follow along.

Setting up a new page

  1. Create a new page in Roll20 by opening the Page Toolbar (in the top-right of the map canvas) and clicking Create New Page.
  2. Set the Page Settings by hovering over your new page in the Page Toolbar and clicking the blue cog. Change the Width and Height to match the battle map you wish to import.
    • For my newer maps, the map dimensions are declared in their file name, such as
      “Meadow Ruins – Grassy – Day – 22×16.jpg”
    • Older maps are generally 23×16″ but you can check by opening the map’s PDF, enabling a square grid, and counting the grid squares.
    • All this said, feel free to create a large page and simply estimate the size of the map – the exact scale is usually not too important.
  3. (Optional) Give your new page a name by clicking the “Untitled” name field in the Page Toolbar.
  4. Click your new page to navigate to it.

Uploading a battle map to Roll20

  1. Download and unzip (if necessary) your desired battle map to your computer. A battle map is a JPG or PNG file (the PDF files are for printing, not for virtual tabletops).
  2. Switch to the Map & Background layer (see image).
    Assets placed on this layer will appear beneath Roll20’s grid overlay, which is exactly what we need for a battle map.
  3. Drag-and-drop the battle map from your hard drive into the Roll20 browser window to import it onto your current page and layer. An “Uploading” popup will momentarily appear, and the battle map will appear on the page, but likely at the wrong scale;
  4. Set the map dimensions by right clicking the image and navigating to Advanced > Set Dimensions in the menu that appears. Select “Units” instead of “Pixels” and enter the desired width and height. Click “Set” to confirm.
  5. Click-and-drag the resized map so that it fits within the confines of the page.

That’s all it takes to import a fresh battle map into Roll20. If you are interested also in importing map assets and tokens, please continue reading…


Importing Assets and Tokens

All of my assets, tokens, and other resources are uploaded and used in much the same way, so I will explain what they have in common and then I will break down their unique differences. I will refer to map assets, tokens, and spell templates simply as “assets” when the type is inconsequential.

Uploading to the Art Library

  1. Download and unzip an asset pack to your computer. Assets are PNG files and are usually organized within a folder labelled as such.
  2. Navigate to the Art Library (see image) and to My Library therein.
  3. Press Upload and, following the prompts, upload as many assets as you desire.
    The assets will upload and appear in your Art Library, ready for use on your page.

Adding Art Library assets to the page

  1. Choose your page layer in Roll20;
    • The Map & Background layer is for assets which will appear under Roll20’s grid overlay, and is the better option for static assets which you do not need to move during play, such as trees, buildings, and furniture.
    • The Objects & Tokens layer will place assets on top of the grid, but these will be clickable during play when you have this layer selected (which is most of the time). Assets on this layer may get in the way during play, so reserve it for objects that need to move, such as tokens, spell templates, and interact-able map assets.
  2. Drag-and-drop your desired asset from the Art Library onto the page. It may help to utilize the search bar if you have a great many. It will appear where you drop it, though at a hard-coded dimension.
  3. Transform the asset; change the position, scale, and rotation using the transform controls that appear when you click the asset. Be sure to hold down Alt to avoid snapping to the grid.
  4. (Optional) manipulate the render order. Occasionally you will find that two assets overlap in an nonsensical way. Right click one of them and select either “To Front” or “To Back” to change its position relative to other assets on its layer.
  • If you need a duplicate of this asset, it is easier to copy and paste it than to repeat these steps each time. You can do this with the right-click menu or by selecting it and pressing Ctrl+C and Ctrl+V.

Map Assets

Though I don’t recommend creating entire custom maps in Roll20, it is very easy to make significant additions such as adding a few extra trees, a campsite, or ravenous, deadly flames. You can click here to browse all of my map assets.

In general, the scale of these assets is not important. I recommend going with whatever looks right and fits the grid conveniently, and placing them on the Map & Background layer unless they are something that will likely move, such as a wagon or trap.

Player and Monster Tokens

Creature tokens are an integral part of any map, as they represent the all-important heroes and villains doing battle! You can click here to view my pre-made tokens, or your can click here to visit the 2-Minute Token Editor.

In general, these tokens are designed to snap to the grid and should be resized to some number of grid squares, but you may wish to tweak them by holding Alt while resizing them.

Assigning a token to a Character

To save a token’s dimensions, other settings, and (optionally) to give another player control over it, you can assign it to a Character.

  1. To create a new character, navigate to your Journal (in the top-right menu) and press “Add” and then “Character.”
  2. Edit the Character by clicking its list entry in the Journal and clicking “Edit” in the window that opens.
  3. Assign a token to the character by first clicking the desired token on the page and then clicking “Use Selected Token” in the Edit Character window. The token image will appear in place of the button.
  4. (Optional) Grant ownership of this token to a player by entering their name in the “Can be edited and controlled by” field.
  5. Press the “Save Changes” button.

After you have set up a Character in this way, you can drag-and-drop it from the Journal and onto the page just like any asset from your Art Library. However, a Character will save its dimensions and other settings no matter the page, unlike an Art Library asset. Handy!

Spell Templates

Spell templates are a convenient tool for aiming your area-of-effect spells, and they look super cool to boot! You can click here to browse my spell assets so far.

Since the dimensions of spell templates are so important and you likely want your players to be able to move and position them, I recommend creating a collection of “Characters” in your Journal for them by following the “Assigning a token to a Character” guide above. Your wizard player will then be able to drag-and-drop his Fireball “Character” from his Journal onto the map whenever they please!

Set Pieces

As a final asset type, there is the map/asset hybrid that I call “set pieces” which includes buildings, boats, and other battle maps with a transparent background designed to be placed over another battle map. You can click here to browse my set piece collection.

The dimensions of set pieces are usually important, as they contain walls and obstacles that conform to the grid. The intended dimensions will be listed in the filename of the asset, which includes the transparent padding around the edge.

You can set the map dimensions in the same way we did for the battle map; by right clicking the asset and navigating to Advanced > Set Dimensions in the menu that appears. Select “Units” instead of “Pixels” and enter the desired width and height. Click “Set” to confirm.


Before You Go

If you enjoy my content, you’ll want to be notified when I upload something new. Please come join us on social media, or subscribe to my email newsletter! I aim to make a new map or asset pack once a week. 🙂

For exclusive map variants and even the PSD files, consider joining the amazing community that makes these maps possible:

That’s all for now. I hope this guide has been useful to you! Please leave any feedback or questions in the comments below and, if you are interested in more of our content, please enjoy some of our recent articles below. Farewell!

The Desert Island Battle Map

Ross McConnell

Shipwreck your players on this 44×32 desert island battle map! There’s nothing here but sand, palm trees, and miles of tropical ocean…

Graythorn & Greenbriar

Garmbreak1

Bring your players to explore Graythorn & Greenbriar, a forested system-neutral region filled with woodland animals and charming townsfolk.

The Lakeside Camp Battle Map

Ross McConnell

A serene battle map just as suitable for a picnic as it is for an encounter with whatever lives in the neighboring lake, swamp, or forest!

About the author

Ross McConnell

Artist and DM, I draw the maps, record the videos, and write the articles here at 2-Minute Table Top. It's my ideal creative outlet, and it's all thanks to you!

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Related Posts

Sours: https://2minutetabletop.com/beginners-guide-to-roll20/

Building a dungeon

Building Your Roll20 Dungeon Map

These step-by-step instructions summarize my weeks of learning how to draw a map. Follow the steps in order. You will need an image for the game on the game page. I also used a pre-written script that contains a dungeon map, and text describing each room, complete with NPCs and monsters. I highly recommend that you don't create your dungeon without some up-front planning.

I also create a pristine version of the dungeon map, then make a full copy of it for play (add player characters and you're ready to go). That way I always have a fresh unspoiled dungeon for playing it again. I prefix the title with "Tpl_" and the tag "template" to designate my original.

Create the Game Sandbox

  1. From the Roll20 Home page, click the Create New Game button beneath the banner.
  2. Enter the name of the game, and any search tags you want to go with it. I have a lot of maps, so I put "template" if it is the original, the game type (Chronos), and the author(s) because sometimes I use published material.
  3. Leave the Character Sheet as None for Chronos, and the module as None.
  4. When you click the button OK, I’m Ready. Create Game, you are taken into an empty page (Create New Page) of the game. We’ll come back to this. Use the cog menu to Exit Game.

Enter Game Image and Description

  1. From the Game Page, you should see the game name, with the default image: a d20 icon.
  2. Ignore the Playing test field below the image. Click on the image and upload your own image for the game.
  3. Enter a description of the dungeon (or cut-n-paste from an external file, e.g a Word doc). I have a pre-written script that I use to follow along with the Party as they go through the adventure. Enter the title of the game in the subject area, and the first line of the description should say something like "A Chronos Game for Adventurer Level 2 – 4."

Configure the Map Page

  1. Join game to enter into the mapping area. Select the page icon in the top right (overlays the map, not part of the top-right main menu.
  2. You should see a Create New Page and a Start page, with the Players banner over the latter. Hover over the Start page and choose the cog wheel icon that appears to configure the page.
  3. The page size defaults to 25 x 25. Set it to the dimensions of your map. It is hard to make changes to this later because the map actually contains multiple layers that do not move in sync as well as you might hope. Make sure that the Scale is 1 unit = 5’. Leave all the other options untouched for now. The drawing tools use the grid, so your grid should be on, which it is by default. Save changes with the OK button.
  4. Click on the page title at the bottom of the page icon to change it (instead of Untitled). Rename the page. Mine is often called Upper Level, or Main Level. (Later, you will make a landing page for Characters to start on without having them start in the map itself.) Return to the grid page.

Draw the Map Outline

  1. Use the Magnifying Glass to change the view to say, 70%. You should see the top left corner of the page.
  2. Using the left menu, click on the cube (layer tool) to get the Map Background layer (looks like a teardrop). Unlike the token and GM layer, the Map layer is the most stable, and probably will never change during the game. The other layer is the Dynamic Lighting layer, and is also very stable. These other layers are discussed later.
  3. Click on the brush icon (drawing tool) and select polygon/line option to draw lines. A color palette will pop up with black ink (default) and Regular size. (The foreground color is on the left; the background color is on the right. Set set to right side to the checkered pattern, meaning it is transparent.) The mouse is now ready to draw the map outline.
  4. Hold the Shift key down and click the mouse to draw from where it currently points. Each time you left click, the line will draw to the closest grid intersection of the mouse position. Let up on the Shift key if you don’t want it to lock onto the grid. A left click will end the line and a right click will begin a new one at a new location, e.g., for jumping across hallways, or to start a new room. If you make a mistake, Ctrl-Z will undo the last line segment. Whenever you click on the polygon/line tool, a small popup will remind you of these keys. Draw an outline of each room of the map at the map layer.

Add Doors as Reference Points

  1. It is easy to get confused as to where you are, so add Doors to the map at the appropriate places. Go to the Art icon of the right menu (looks like two paintings) and Search for Maps, Tiles, Textures. Find the image you want for a normal Door and drag it onto the map page. (It will automatically go into your Art Library for easy selection later. The image is marked as a star.)
  2. The door is a token, but because you are in the Map layer, it will also be in Map layer. Click on the door icon and select Layer from the dropdown menu. It will move the Door to the Token layer. However, since you are in the Map layer, you will not be able to select or manipulate it. Click the Map (teardrop) icon in left menu and select the Token layer. You can now work with the door token.
  3. Resize the door if necessary by selecting and moving the corner handles. Copy and paste the door to wherever there should be normal doors. The door needs to straddle the line between inside and outside the room so that it can be “seen” from either side. Sometimes doors straddle grid lines (across two cells), and sometimes it is more convenient for them to line up with a cell of the grid. Hold the Alt key down if you don’t want the image to lock to the grid.
  4. Secret Doors: There is a secret door icon—an S with a line through it. (There are also icons with arrows through the S to show one-way secret doors.) You can place that over the door to show that it is secret. Be sure to place it on the GMlayer, else the players will see it immediately. After they find it, move the S to the token layer.

Add Floor Tiling and Room Furnishings

  1. For each room, one at a time, populate the floor at the Map layer and furnishings at the Token level. I like to use standard flat tiles for hallways, and interesting tiling for rooms. Who knows what clues might be indicated by an intricate floor layout?
  2. For tiling: Return to the Map layer to set down floor tiling: stone, wood, sawdust, straw, etc. Select the your desired tiling from the Art Library in the right-hand menu. You can cut and paste it throughout the room. Use a doubling technique for long hallways and large rooms (copy 1 and paste; copy both and paste; copy all four tiles and paste, etc.
  3. If you need part of a tile, you can either resize it appropriately, which sometimes makes it look unfitting, or you can overlap the tiles. There is a To Front and To Back option for each the tile when it is selected; you will usually need to send the tile to the back when you lay it so it doesn’t cover your doors or room outlines.
  4. You may also need to place a set of stairs somewhere. Chose the appropriate stair tile from the Art Library and place that instead of a flat floor tile.
  5. For furnishings: Move to the token layer and then select beds, desk, chests, whatever you need to populate each room, from the Art Library. For each item you drag-and-drop to the map, a copy will move to your own PArt Library. You can access that by selecting the Star icon in the art menu.
  6. Discovered Items: Sometimes an item is discovered, say lying in cabinet, or under a bed. Populate these items to, but put them into the GM layer. They are visible to you, but not the players. When the Party discovers the item, push them into the Token layer for the players to see. Voila! For actual play, the items don’t really have to be in the container—placing them in view is sufficient.
  7. Room numbers: It is useful to place the room number somewhere in the room on the Map layer. It should be easily seen by the players, but out of the way. In my dungeons, I look up special properties of items by where they were found. The gold ring found in Room 4 may be different than the gold ring found in Room 11. Let it be up to the players to keep track of which room the item was found in.

Add Dynamic Lighting

  1. Lighting is easy to do, but a bit tricky. Reconfigure the page for lighting and set a light source to check your progress. Configure the page by selecting the cog menu for the page in the page menu above the map. On the Page Settings popup, check the boxes near Dynamic Lighting labeled Enabled, Enforce Line of Sight, and Restrict Movement. Now light will not go past the light lines you set up as visibility barriers, but character token also will not be able to pass. This means the characters token will not be able to walk through walls. When your return to the map, you will notice that it is much darker. (You can set the GM Opaque slider in the Page Settings to adjust the brightness.)
  2. Set a light source. Pick a torch image token and drag it onto the map. Double-click it and on the Advanced tab and check the All Players See Light and Have Sight checkboxes. In the fields above, set the Emits Light field to 30 and 15. After a lot of experimenting, I think these are the two most realistic parameters. It means the torch sheds light for 30’ but dims are 15’, giving a fading glow to the torch.
  3. Select the dynamic light drawing tool. Go to the Dynamic Lighting layer in the left menu (a flame icon) and then select the polygon/line too again, as you did drawing the floor plan. This time select a Small line, and Yellow color from the color palette. (The foreground color is on the left; the background color is on the right. It should be set to the checkered pattern, meaning it is transparent.)
  4. Trace the outline of the rooms, hallways, and other areas of the rooms, pretty much everywhere you drew the black borders before but do not draw a line across the doors. Once the line is connected to make a closed area, it cannot be changed. Leave gaps everywhere that a door or other opening appears. If a pixel or two of light sneaks through, you can select the line and adjust it until it is light-tight.
  5. Shadow tall items. You also want to draw a light barrier across tall items like bookshelves, so light doesn’t go through, but leaves a shadow on the other side. Draw inside cabinets in case a character walks inside, light won’t shine out except through the door. Don’t draw the light line on the surface of the item though; draw the line within the item’s image to leave enough of the it showing so the characters can see it.
  6. Draw in the doors. Use a Small Orange line to draw across doors. During the game, you can rotate the door to open it, and move the orange line to allow light and the characters through the doorway. Move your light source around to ensure that there are no light gaps. If one pixel of light can make it through, then your character tokens can wen their way through too, making it again like walking through walls. You might want to bring the magnification up to 100% or more to check this more easily.
  7. Last check: Walk all the hallways and rooms with your lit torch and check for light shining where it shouldn’t. Be especially careful around doors. My frequent error is drawing a light barrier over a door, so the characters (and light) can’t get through it after I “open” the door.

Related Pages

Sours: https://wiki.roll20.net/Building_a_dungeon
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Sours: https://www.pinterest.com/aidenswank/maps-for-roll20/

How to Set up a Tabletop RPG Map in Roll20

Dungeon Master, player, consumer, and lover of several "DnD" games, both my own and streamed by others.

How to Add Maps to Roll20

Roll20 isn't the easiest website to learn, but once you get the hang of it your tabletop games will go much smoother, with every player knowing exactly where they are and what they're fighting. To make the learning just a little bit easier, here's a guide to making your first map on Roll20 and adding your player's tokens.

Step 1: Creating a Game

The first two pictures are of the Roll20 homepage. When you first go to the website you'll find something similar. It shows all the games you've played in and all the games you've made (or you will make.)

To make your first game you'll click Create New Game.

A new page will load for you to title your game and choose what, if any, system you're using.

For this example, I'm using Dungeons & Dragons 5e.

Along the side, there are some modules you can buy in the market place, but we're not worrying about those. If you choose a known character sheet an example will appear under the option.

If everything looks right we'll go ahead and click I'm Ready, Create Game at the bottom of the page.

Ta-Da!!! You've made your first Roll20 tabletop game! You can add an image to the top to personalize the home screen for yourself and your players, and this is where you'll add the players and schedule dates.

But we're looking to make a map, so we'll need to get into the actual game itself. To do that we'll click Launch Game.

Step 2: Using the Editor

Here's the intimidating part. A big blank grid with tools you don't know. Scary. But don't worry, we'll make that big blank grid into an easy to look at map. To upload your map you click on the little photo picture in the top right corner.

These are your assets. Your pictures, maps, character tokens, player tokens, basically anything you might want to add to the map. Let's go ahead and add the map itself. You can find free maps on google or various map creators. Or you can make one on Roll20 with just a background and some assets. But we're new here, so we're going to upload a map.

For this tutorial, I made a really simple map using http://pyromancers.com online dungeon painter. The online version is free but they have a version on Steam too. I love their painter. It's so easy to use I made mine in less than a minute.

To upload your map you'll click on My Library, then Upload. Once you chose your image and it uploads it will be hanging out under Recent Uploads.

Just click and drag onto the grid now.

Oh no! It's super tiny!

That's because at the moment it's only a token. Tokens are generally used for Players, NPCs, Monsters and the like. For it to be the map it was born to be we need to move it into the map layer. (We could have moved into the map layer before we dragged it, but then I'd have to explain the toolbar before we got pretty pictures on our map and that wouldn't have been as much fun.)

To change what layer any image is on simply right click the image and hit Layer.

Step 3: Using the Layers

Roll20 has three different Layers for DM's to play with. The Map Layer, the Token Layer, and the GM Layer. The map layer is static. Players can't do anything with images placed on the map layer. The token layer is more fluid. This is where player tokens go, as well as monsters or NPCs or items. Players can move tokens if permitted by the game creator (that's you!) The GM layer is the fun one, however. This is the layer you place everything you don't want your players knowing about. Traps, spies, ambushes, secret doors, that magic item they need a crit 20 to find.

At the moment, however, we're just gonna move our map into the map layer where it belongs.

However, now we can't click on it. Drat!

Don't panic, it's not lost forever. It's just on a different layer than we are. We need to join it on the map layer to play with it again. To do that we need to visit that scary toolbar over on the left. Don't worry, I've got a torch.

To change layers we just hit the little cube. Again it gives us the three-layer options. I'll teach you the rest of the tools as we need them but at the moment we just need to hit the cube then click Map & Background. (This is what we should have done before dragging and dropping the image.)

Now we are visiting the map's layer, so we can interact with it as much as we want.

Step 4: Removing Grid Lines

Now that we've got the map up it's time to do some tweaking. Notice how the grid lines don't match up? That'll cause all sorts of confusion for both you and your players. Nothing spells immersion quite like having your player stand in a wall. There is a way to make the grid on the image line up with the Roll20's grid, but I've found that to be complicated and not very helpful. So we're just going to turn off the grid entirely and use our own. If your map doesn't have a grid than feel free to skip this step and just use Roll20's.

To remove the grid lines we're going to have to click the little page icon at the top. When you do a sort of shelf will come down.

I know another toolbar thing, but don't worry this isn't one you'll need often.

These are pages. Pages are separate maps inside one game. For example, when the players leave this little dungeon we've created they'll likely go to a town. That town may have a separate map. For that separate map, I'll make another page just like the one we're doing now.

The little bookmark that says Player tells you what page the players can see. Players can't navigate between pages, you have to drag and drop the player bookmark to whatever page you want them to see.

But we've only got the one page right now, so that makes things easy for us. To find the settings for our page click the little gear that appears when you hover over it.

You can do several things on the page settings tab. You can change the size of the page as a whole (not the images on the page) if you find you have more or less space than you need. Change the scale of the grid, or turn it off entirely. We'll get to that neat little Fog of War button later but right now we're just going to turn off the grid.

Ah, much better. Now we can place things wherever we want.

So now we've got a basic map down and we're good right? Well, we could be but that's not going to help the players much. Where is everything? Doors? stairs? monsters? their characters? Let's help them (and ourselves so we don't forget) out.

We'll start with doors and stairs since they'll stay on the map layer.

Step 5: Finding Assets

Using the search feature of our image gallery we may be able to find images to suit our needs. Simple things like a door or stairs are easy to find this way, but more complicated assets may require you to upload your own.

The first section is the ones you already have. For example, I've got a secret door icon I've uploaded from a site called https://game-icons.net/ They have thousands of free icons for you to download and use from a door to a werewolf. And they're customizable.

The middle sections are premium assets, which you have to pay for, so we'll skip that one.

The last is just a quick google search of similar icons. There are plenty of doors there so we'll find one we like and drag it to where we need doors. We'll do the same thing with stairs.

Remember we're still on the map layer so don't accidentally move your map.

You can add anything you don't need your players interacting with on the map layer. But for now, we'll leave it with doors and stairs and move on to the things your players will interact with. Like character tokens and monsters.

To do that we just need to move back to the token layer the same way we moved into the map layer. Via the second button on the toolbar to the left.

Step 6: Using Tokens

Tokens are a lot less likely to be available in the easy search bar provided. Especially character tokens. While you may find a generic elf with a sword, players like custom tokens. This can be an image they find or something they've drawn. All you have to do is upload the picture and move it on the grid, just like we did for the map.

Aren't they cute?

I've chosen to keep them outside of the map a little bit near the entrance, that way the players can determine the travel order so their tank can fall in the traps rather than the squishy rogue.

Sours: https://levelskip.com

Maps roll20 make for

I only slept for three hours. - Bitch, kill. - I put on a robe and went to open the door, cursing at what the light was standing. I opened the door and saw Svetka with a suitcase in her hand, she pressed the bell without stopping, stood and looked.

11 - Learning Roll20 - Battlemap Basics

But think about it. You asked me to do this when we were on the beach. You don't mean to say that your son is farther than me.

Now discussing:

And through tears - they sat down to dinner. Without sentries. Without a commander. Well, give the girls. I poured them all half a glass of vodka, they dashingly waved - a lot of stress.



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