Summon DM's Familiar

  Sitting unused in the garage was a Toshiba Satellite Pro 430CDT laptop, a whopping 120mHz processor powering the  Windows 98 equipped beast.  I decided to see if it would make a useful DM's tool, so out from the forced exile she came.  I dressed her up with an appropriate wallpaper, and went about converting the Ruins of Zenopus dungeon into electronic form.

  I put each room description as a separate text file, with all the pertinent information contained there.  I also made some .jpg "DM Screen" tables I could switch to quickly using an image viewer (IrfanView, in this case).  As a bonus, the screen itself acted as a barrier to the players seeing relevant details without being in the way like a traditional DM's screen.  I found it quicker and easier to switch between text files of the rooms rather than sheets of paper or note cards.

  Now, instead of a dust collector, I have a useful tool for game sessions that requires minimal set up, and is much neater than several pages of written notes and tables.  The fact that the laptop is not really useful for regular duty is a plus, as I don't have to co-opt someone else's time online while we are having a game session, or when I want to work on the campaign.  I don't even have to worry about using up all the laptops hard drive space, as all the information fits on an SD memory card.

  I've decided to name her Pseudo-dragon, after the familiar in the Monster Manual , a fitting name I think.


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