December News: Vault Folders, Stream Screen, Gifs, and Upcoming Beta Features


#1

Hello Adventures!

Welcome back to another exciting update. Last month, we announced some incredible new features for our beta users. This month, thanks to help of the incredible beta team who helped us with the experience and helped uncover and fix many bugs in the new system, things have improved to the point where we believe the new features for the rest of our users. With that, let’s dive right in!

Vault Folders, Now Live

For about a month now, we’ve been testing out a new feature in beta that allows users to organize their maps, characters, assets, and compendiums into folders and subfolders using My Vault. We’re super excited to finally announce that My Vault folders are now live for all users!

My Vault

In addition, we have even bigger news to announce to go along with this new feature …

Free users can now upload up to 1GB (!!) of assets to organize and build worlds with! We’ve also bumped the standard plan to 5GB (previously 4GB) and Pro users can still enjoy up to 20GB.

Go ahead and upload your entire dungeon collection without tiny storage limits. We hope this change brings about a new level of creativity from our current users and allows new users to truly enjoy the full benefits of building your worlds in Astral.

Stream Screen, Now Live

Holy cow! In addition to the 1GB of free storage, we are making our in-house audio/video platform free for all users!

Last month we announced the Stream Screen for our beta users, a customizable screen for your entire party to connect to using audio/video without the need to setup a full tabletop experience. After a few weeks of testing, we are eager to get this into the hands of everyone else!

Stream Screen

This is a super useful feature for theatre-of-the-mind games but also useful for streamers who want to simply setup a party and stream to Twitch or YouTube. The Stream Screen is accessible via a new window, so you can even use multiple monitors while playing!

We plan to keep expanding the Stream Screen based on your feedback, so let us know your thoughts and suggestions using the feedback buttons when using this feature.

GIFs (Coming Soon)

We have been working behind-the-scenes to introduce a new asset pipeline for our merchants that makes uploading smoother and easier. Best of all, we will also support GIFs and animated PNGs! This also includes uploading your own GIFs and animated artwork for your worldbuilding needs. Finally, you’ll be able to build flowing water and animated saw traps right from Astral!

This change also introduces a new workflow for merchants to organize and submit their own products and provides new merchants with a proper on-boarding experience, freeing up developer time to work on features you’ve requested. If you’re a merchant and want to start selling your wares on Astral, let us know using this form.

(Beta) New In-Game Experience (Coming Soon)

Finally, we are eager to release the first version of our new in-game experience to our beta users this month.

In order to support the new in-game experience, we have completely rebuilt the engine from the ground-up with two major goals in mind: Streamline storytelling for a GM and immerse players in their roleplaying experience.

The new experience makes it possible to execute complicated system rules, drastically improves the performance for GMs and players, and removes a ton of clutter in the current system. Best of all, we’re finally going to be implementing long-requested features such as Triggers, Audio/Sound FX, additional Visual FX, and pop-out character sheets/handouts. Players will have an easier time managing and manipulating their characters and GMs will have better insight and storytelling tools into their campaign.


We’re still finalizing a lot of changes to the new in-game system and do not expect to have it feature-complete this month, but we can already tell it’s going to be a real game-changer for your online tabletop experience. Whether you use Astral already, have been thinking of switching for some time, or are brand new to TTRPGs, the new in-game experience will make it simple to start, manage, and run a tabletop game from beginning to end.

Not part of the beta? Send an email to support@astraltabletop.com to request access!

Conclusion

There are many amazing features still in the works and this is just the tip of the iceberg for where we want to go in 2019. Free users can now enjoy 1GB of storage and free audio/video chat, and we have an amazing new experience coming up for our beta users.

We look forward to hearing your feedback, comments, or questions about the upcoming changes.

Happy adventuring! :crossed_swords:

Best,
Tom
Customer Experience Overlord
Unicorn Heart Club :unicorn:


#2

Hey Tom!

I’d love to hear the features and guidelines to work on GIFs and other animated formats. You caught me just as I was playing with animated trees :slight_smile:

Cheers!


#3

Looks nice!

No specs yet, we’re still determining best quality, compression methods, etc.

With that though, if you have specs you are already abiding by or standards you think we should take up, we’re all ears :ear:

Thanks!


#4

Nothing set in stone yet, but I believe webm would probably be the best format to use. Good quality, size and transparency that gif cannot compete with. I have no experience with apng, so I’ll be taking a look at that.