Free Sharable Online Battlemap – from Google

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I think I’ve mentioned that I’ve been playing in a D&D game via Skype. In general, it has been working quite well. The biggest frustration has been combat. Without a battlemat, combat in 3.5 is… well… tricky.
We considered a few options. Last game, however, our GM hit upon a great, simple solution: Google Docs.
She set up a spreadsheet in the form of a grid, and she shared it with all the players. We could all edit the sheet simultaneously. We just typed our PCs’ names into the appropriate squares and cut and pasted them around as needed. The cell backgrounds are easy to color, and you can even drop in images… or Google Draw pictures that you create within the document.



4 Responses

  1. Cool! Have you considered MapTool? My group loves it for online maps. We use Skype for audio and MapTool for the battles, and it works great. I'm happy to teach people how to use it, though it's pretty easy.

  2. We use skype for audio and chat as well.

    We haven't used MapTool. I know the GM has considered a few options… I've tossed several her way. I think that she went with GDocs because it had the lowest barrier to entry.

    Plus, it is a cool use of a familiar tool. I have to approve of that.

  3. For D&D-like games, MapTool is a fantastic choice — I used it to great effect in my 4E campaign. However, for games that need extremely simple maps (I'm thinking Diaspora or Spirit of the Century here, with their very generic 'zone' maps), the Google Docs idea seems spot-on.

    Thinking about it, the Presentation or Drawing doc formats might be better than the Spreadsheet format for non-gridded games. And since you can make a folder of 'map' documents and share them, it'd work out nicely. See, now you've got me thinking…

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