The Tools I Use for Online Play: Star Wars

As you've probably seen, I'm running a Star Wars game online, and thought I'd share a few of the tools I use to run the game. 1. RPOL: Roleplay Online is a fantastic site. This is what we use to actually run the games. Basically, it allows you to set up your own forums for your game, and gives you quite a bit of control. You can create NPCs, give them profile pictures, and character sheets. The site is system-neutral, and has a convenient dice roller. It works fantastically for people who don't mind being wordy. The only issue I have with it is that I wish you could easily incorporate a tabletop with movable minis, but I understand that requires a much higher level of programming. 2. SWAG Online: The Star Wars Artists Guild is the perfect place to grab images created by fans for use in the game. I've found a ton of great images to show the players to help them visualize what they're encountering. I've used this site for years. It had actually gone way for a while, but luckily, was brought back. There are images of almost anything you can imagine in the Star Wars Universe, from lightsaber diagrams, to maps, to NPCs and PCs. There are also some fantastic landscape images. Definitely worth checking out, even if you don't play Star Wars. 3. Wookieepedia: Wookieepedia is the unofficial Star Wars wiki is fantastic, and contains a massive amounts of information on literally every subject. Just the other day, in the game, I mentioned Dejarik (holochess) in passing, and before I knew it, one of the characters was describing the game in detail while her character and another character played the game back and forth. She hadn't heard of Dejarik before, as far as I knew, but you would never know. That's the great thing about play-by-forum games, too, is that you can take time to research things, so you sound like you know what you're talking about; something not possible in a live game. 4. Vassal: Instead of using a program like Game Table or another program like that, we decided to go with Vassal. It already has a ton of maps, and all of the Star Wars minis already there. We actually use the Star Wars Miniatures Game mod, which means that we're really only using Vassal as a table, without any of the rules built into the program. We manually roll dice and have our character sheets on-hand. Since we're fairly free-form in our gaming anyway, it works out well. Vassal's primary use is for playing board games and wargames online, for free, so it's worth checking out if you're interested in either of those things. 5: WotC's Dice Roller: The D&D Dice Roller is what we use when playing with Vassal. It worked out well, as you can add any bonuses you want. A couple of players haven't played in years, and so don't have dice to physically roll. Those who do manually roll. And that's pretty much all we use. We've been having a great time, and I look forward to seeing what we are able to do in the future.

6 thoughts on “The Tools I Use for Online Play: Star Wars

  1. Wow, I’d never heard of RPOL before! I’m definitely going to consider using this in the future – (at least as soon as I get POLYHEDRAL 3 out of the way, get up to speed on the editorial duties at My Girlfriend is a DM, plan my two weekly campaigns and make my day job) though I’ve had absolutely no experience doing online roleplay before.

    The challenging part is getting myself to commit to an online RP sked, which for some strange reason, I find harder than scheduling face-to-face sessions.

  2. Hah . . you’re right, I had never heard of Dejarik before! I almost skipped over it thinking you were just activating some ship control panel, but then googled it in passing. I love Wookiepedia. And here I thought I could fool you into thinking I simply knew everything about holochess. But now that I know what it is, I recognized it when Chewie was playing it in one of the Star Wars movies. :)

  3. We play an in-person game, but laptops have become almost mandatory (thanks 4e). RPOL seems like a handy resource for keeping everything in one place.

    Would you use it if you were running an inperson game, or would you end up opting for something else to help keep things in order?

  4. You definitely COULD use it, but I would probably employ it primarily for background information, notes between sessions, perhaps even playing in between sessions, but I couldn’t really see it getting a ton of use during an in-person game.

  5. If I may, I would suggest you check out It is also a free, system-neutral site that has everything you mentioned about RPOL in addition to a tile-based mapper that has DM movable tokens that can be used to represent PC’s, NPC’s, foes, etc. I’ve been using it for about three years now, and the amount of features the lone developer (not me, btw) has implemented is quite impressive.

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