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Roll20 Community FAQ

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This is Community-created Guide, listing common troubles (new) people encounter on Roll20, which aren't too obvious or clearly, or isn't mentioned on the relevant Help Center or Community Wiki pages, and where to learn more about them.

The page is maintained by the community.

Contents

Bug Report

Roll20 has a web form for reporting bugs and contacting them for other issues: Contact Roll20

Check Bug Report for general advice.

Browser

Main Page: Browser

Roll20 officially only supports the Firefox & Google Chrome browsers, so if you encounter a problem using other browsers, it's recommended to switch to either of these. And no, using any Chromium-based browser like Microsoft Edge is not the same thing as using Chrome. Roll20 often works well on other browsers, but your mileage may vary.

There is no consensus on which browser works best for Roll20, as it seems to vary based on things like what operating system you use (Windows/Mac/Linux), your hardware (physical computer), your ISP, what browser plugins you use, and even what version of the browser you have.

Some have claimed Chrome is faster, others swear by Firefox. It can be a good idea to try out the other (Firefox/Chrome) in case things are more smooth with it.

Plugins

When you encounter problems with Roll20, you should always check if it's caused by some browser plugin you're using, by temporarily disabling all and seeing if the problem persists.

See the Browser#Plugins for info on popular plugins used with Roll20, such as Beyond20.

Character Sheets

Main Page: Character Sheet

How to create a character

Character can only be created inside a game by a Game Creator, or someone promoted to a Game Master. To use a specific character sheet template, you need to have one assigned to the game. Adding Character Sheet covers how to do both. If you're looking for creating a custom character sheet template, check Building Character Sheets.

If you have created a Character Sheet for a player and they don't see it, you have probably forgotten to change the "Seen By" and "Controlled by" settings for it.

Link Token

Link Token to character sheet is a common stumbling block.

Import Character

Importing & Exporting characters between games is done through the Character Vault.

When a character has been imported to a game, the GM must manually assign the sheet to the player for them to be able to see it. There are also some limitations to what games you can export to.

Guide to the Character Vault

Separate Window

main page: Restrictions when a sheet is in a separate window

  • A number of problems with the character sheet can come from having it in a separate window, which among other things disables drag-n-drop from the i Compendium and the Charactermancer can't be used.

Charactermancer

Charactermancer refers to Roll20's system for integrating character creation into some Official Character Sheets.

Only some official sheets have it.

Change All Sheets to whisper

5E

Over half of all games on Roll20 are D&D 5E, and basically everyone uses the D&D5E by Roll20 character sheet. It has an extensive documentation page: D&D5E by Roll20.

It has a few known issues: D&D5E by Roll20#Known Issues Forums: 5E Sheet Bug Report Megathread(Forum) - latest updates & discussions on the sheet

Pathfinder 2E

Character Sheet Development

Chat

Text Chat not working

If you have problems with your q Text Chat, it's likely the chat (archive) has been corrupted.

To fix the chat, the GM(or Creator) needs to delete the Chat Archive from the Game's Details page. It's a good idea to back it up before clearing/deleting it.

Compendium

The i Compendium can be accessed both out-of-game as well as inside the game from the i Compendium page, if it is enabled in the Game's Compendium Settings.

In-game, your players don't see the i Compendium content you have, unless you have turned on Compendium Sharing.

Players can access compendiums they own in any game that is using that game system's compendium, unless the GM has selectively changed which compendiums are available in that game through Compendium Selection.

GMs can select which compendiums can be seem in a game, blocking their own & player's access to the GM's compendiums if Compendium Sharing is active, but excluding compendiums also affects players' access to compendiums they own themselves. (Eg. If the GM only owns "D&D 5E's Player Handbook" and "Xanathar's Guide to Everything", they can select blocking any other compendiums to be used in that game. That would mean a player owning "Guide to Wildemount" couldn't access it in that game.

Custom Compendium

You can't yet create Custom Compendium entries in Roll20 for normal i Compendium interaction or to be used in the Charactermancer.

Creating & Editing Compendiums is a popular request, but not a feature that Roll20 has yet. Roll20 seems to consider the current, internal tools used for the system needing more work, before Custom Compendiums can even be considered to start working on a user-accessible version. No timeline has been given when it might eventually get done.

You can vote & follow the discussion on the Custom Compendium(Forum) Suggestion Forum thread.

Dice

Roll20 uses QuantumRoll to provide proper randomness for all rolls.

3D Dice

Main Page: 3D Dice

The 3D Dice always roll in roll commands, and aren't selective like how some more complicated roll results in the q Text Chat are. The results in the q Text Chat are always accurate, while the number of 3D Dice and how to interpret the results is up to the user, or to check the result as it's shown in the Text Chat.

Dynamic Lighting

Main Page: Dynamic Lighting

Legacy Lighting will be discontinued on May 18th, 2021 eventually. An Update to the Legacy Dynamic Lighting Sunset Plan, April 27th, 2021(Blog)

Updated DL vs Legacy DL

Updated Dynamic Lighting(UDL) has more features(more on the way like One-Way Barriers) and perform better than Legacy DL, but are still people who prefer Legacy DL.

Any Roll20 guides made before 2021 are about the Legacy DL, so it's always best to try to check as new guides as possible in general, and any DL-spefici guides from before that are likely not useful.

Players see only black

There is more than one possible reason why the players might not see anything on the map. Only a Game Master can fix these things. There are some common issues people have:

1. They might not yet have tokens on the current map, which would grant them vision. If you have just changed the active map that the players see, this is likely what's going on. Drag-n-drop their tokens from the N Journal to the right place on the map.

2. (LDL) The player-controlled tokens might not have the "Have Vision" checkbox selected. Open the Token's settings, check the box, and save it.

3. The map might have no light-sources, and the characters don't see in the dark. If you don't have "Global Illumination" turned on, the map is dark by default, and only light sources and dark-vision enable sight on the map.

Keith's Checklist(Forum) go through this list to see if everything is in order

  • The token is on the VTT
  • It is assigned to the character
  • The player has control over the character
  • The token is on the Token/Object layer
  • It is not blocked off by DL lines from seeing the immediate surroundings
  • Make sure the player is looking at their token's immediate area. Shift-Click and hold on the token to pull the player's view to that area.
  • If Fog of War is being used, that the area the token is in has been cleared
  • The player has not been Split from the Party (Check the Help Center if this is unfamiliar)
  • If Dynamic Lighting of any kind is being used:
    • The token has sight turned on
    • The token has a light source, or Nightvision (UDL) or personal light (LDL)
    • In UDL it may be necessary to move the token one square to get everything working, or in extreme cases, refresh the (user's) page.

Is Fog of War going away?

No, it's not going away. Fog of War is not impacted by removal of LDL. However, FoW is not compatible with UDL, and Udl-hide-icon.jpg Darkness Tool has taken its place when you have Updated Dynamic Lighting active.

Sources: mention(Forum) mention 2(Forum) tweet

Mobile/tablet

Mobile App

Mobile has info on the mobile app. It is intended to be a companion app for access character sheets and rolls, and not as a feature-complete alternative to access all of Roll20.

Tablet

Table on Tablet Roll20 has done some work to make Roll20 work on tablets using a browser, and is generally a better idea than trying to use a mobile phone.

How well Roll20 works on a specific tablet is hard to know, so best bet it to just try it in the browser (Firefox & Chrome are recommended) and see how it goes. You can search the forums for discussions on this.

Touchscreen

Roll20 doesn't work too well with some Touchscreen devices, and it's generally seen that using a mouse is more functional than using touch-based input

Drawing Tablet

Drawing Tablets/Graphics tablets don't work too well with Roll20, or there is a great variance in performance. Roll20's Drawing Tool has by many been said to work better with a mouse.

Old App(discontinued 2020)

The old mobile app was discontinued, and using Roll20 in the browser was enabled for all users.

Performance

There are a number of things that can impact a Roll20 game's performance, and here is a non-exhaustive list, along with links to guides.

Things that impact a Roll20 campaign's performance:

  • having tons of maps
  • having tons of character/handouts
    • character sheets with tons of items/spells/stats might be slower to open/use/close, while not necessarily impacting
  • Using UDL or LDL in a game.
    • Maps with UDL/LDL settings might still impact overall performance even when not used

Performance Tips

Players

Main Page: Player

Players in a game have a much more limited number of things they can do on Roll20 than a Game Master(GM)/Game's Creator.

Here is a list of things players can't do in a game, which many new users or GM's think players can do.

1. Players can't create their own character sheet, or handouts. The GM must create and assign control of the character/handout to the player(s) for the player to be able to use it. (There exists an API called Welcome Package(Forum) that can automatically do this for players when they join.)

2. Players can't update the image of the Avatar or the Default Token for their Character, nor resize their token. Only the GM can do this.

3. Players can't import from their Character Vault unless the GM has enabled this setting.

Pro users can through APIs somewhat expand or restrict what players can do: Player API

Tokens

Main page: Token

Linking Tokens

Linking Tokens to Character Sheets isn't that intuitive, but there is a guide for it: Linking Tokens to Journals. If tokens aren't linked to a character sheet, they don't share stats, nor can you quickly drag-n-drop tokens to the map from the N Journal.

Tutorial

Tutorial was updated Sept. 8th 2021, completely remaking it and fixing the longstanding bugs it had.

Alternatively, see some of the tutorials listed on our Youtube-page. Crash Course and Keith Curtis' - Starting from Scratch are two recommendations.

It's a good idea to watch more recent Roll20 guides/videos from 2020 or 2019, rather than some older (but still popular) ones like Take20's Roll20 Master Series} from 2017. It's still fairly okay, but several things can be done more easily & better today, and Roll20 has tons of new features that have been added since that guide's creation.

Check the Youtube wiki page; it lists recent guides.

Popular Feature requests

Main Page: Category:Unreleased/Highly Requested features

Roll20 have a Suggestions Forum, where people can vote & comment on suggestions, and Roll20 gives occasional updates on them, along with categorizing them so it's more clear what status they have.

Check the threads for any updates by Roll20 Staff, this page might not be up-to-date.

Some notable/popular Suggestions: (Updated Dec 2021)

  • Custom Compendium 1000 votes, Obstructed
    • Lots to do before Roll20 can start making it available to users, details on page
  • Print Character Sheets(Forum) 718 votes, Researching
    • Partially implemented(May 2021) Roll20 have expanded the char sheet backend so sheet authors can implement a print-friendly version of the sheet using @media print CSS media query. More info on CSE#Print-Friendly
"Yes, this was mentioned in the last Community Roundtable, and in the Pro Forum post. This feature will be part of several enhancements to the Text Chat functionality."
  • Hover to see token name and bars(Forum) 477 votes, Not Now
    • Seems low priority to Roll20
    • Partial Workaround, name: You can add a character's name to the token's Tooltip, so it will show on a hover.
    • Partial Workaround, bars: One could create an API that updates the tooltip description each time some stat changes for the character, so the tooltip could display character health or other stats either as numerical values, or using some unicode symbols. Linebreaks in tooltips dont currently work Andreas J. (talk) 17:09, 17 December 2021 (UTC)




Related: Check Category:New features released by year for recently released features.


See Also