Timer / Time tracker

Can there be a Timeline bar where the DM can enter the time passed since a fixed event.

Example: the characters enter a dungeon, they cast a bunch of enhancement spells on themselves which last 1 hour. As they explore the dungeon the DM can have a countdown bar at the top of the screen showing Time passed since the dungeon was entered. The DM would manually advance the timeline. This way the players have an idea of how much time until their spells expire.

The timeline can have an option to put in new markers so the players can add future flags showing when their spells expire. As the DM advances the timeline he put a special marker on the timeline showing the advancement.

I think this would be a cool addition to the initiative tracker. I know there is a separate request for making the tracker visible to players so this would be added after that. Ideally with the addition of this timeline players could add to it with actions. For instance, a spell with duration two could automatically add to the timeline (initiative tracker) with syntax of:

!(1d6i2) for 1d6 damage for 2 rounds on the timeline.
It would be even cooler if you could roll off the timeline (or add actions to it) so when the round comes up you could click the timeline and roll the result. Even cooler if you could add an initiative number that the move goes on. Maybe:

!(1d6i20k2) for roll 1d6 damage on initiative count 20 for 2 rounds on the timeline. Imagine additionally if the 1d6 was replaced by an action name.

It might be needed to specify that an action could go on a the same count as a player since that happens often in my experience. Perhaps the {name} variable could come in handy?

This could be also improved with last roll as sometimes the duration of abilities is defined by a dice roll. Of course there could be !(i1d6) or something similar. I’m mostly throwing ideas out there to see what people think.

There is already a Feature Request for this here folks: Timer (maybe an hourglass), clock or something similiar

On the advice of @supermooboo I’m leaving this request open though.

An explanation of why I think this request is different from Timer (maybe an hourglass), clock or something similiar

A timer is a countdown to an event occurring. A timeline is a declaration of past and (in this case) a future event that will happen. A timeline implies events. These events could be initiative could be reminders could be a lot of things not covered by the feature request mentioned. Here’s a small list of things that could be implemented with a timeline that could not with a timer (although I’m sure there is a case for both). This could also be an extension of the timeline on the landing page for any Astral game.

  • A record of past events and combats
  • The ability to drill into past events, shrinking and expanding events on the timeline to get more or less details
  • Put an entire sessions rolls, handouts, Maps visited, and NPCs into a timeline that is viewable as the GM allows or creates it (both the past and future events)
  • A handy way to organize as the GM.
  • A way to track initiative that could expand Astral’s robust syntax further (perhaps advancing more feature requests)
  • A more robust way to track initiative by adding events to a timeline as opposed to having to create many timers (although maybe the process is similar?)

These were my initial thoughts. If the powers that be still think it is still too similar (and I do they think they are related) then feel free to close this again. I think both ideas are cool but are different enough to be separate however.

3 Likes

So I think you should modify the title to contain timeline instead of timer (I also misunderstood your request based on just the title). I really like the idea that a campaign would have a timeline where events could be recorded.

@Seriously_Hi

Games Do have a timeline where you can record things. On the Game Portal Page.

To clarify my initial request, although I like all the added options people are thinking about, the simplest example (and maybe a first implementation step?) would be:

  • Characters enter the dungeon at 2 AM and cast a bunch of long duration enhancement spells.
  • Characters wander around, search rooms, fight a few monsters, then ask “How much time left on our spells?”. This Timeline/Tracker feature would show at the top of the screen it is 3:15 AM so everyone knows that any spell cast at the entrance with 1 hour or less duration is expired.

At a larger scale, there are many printed adventures where something happens (a murder for example) at a certain time (let’s say midnight) and the characters have until 4 AM to solve it or something else is triggered. Other modules track days: DAY 1, orcs camp outside the town. DAY 2, orcs prepare to attack. DAY 3 at 2 PM orcs attack.

A question about that: How would game time correlate to real time?