Spotlighting Safety and Community: Roll20 in 2021

The Roll20 Team

The Roll20 Team


2021 continued to change our work and play in unprecedented ways. We played more games and tried new systems, spending quality time with friends. Throughout the year, Roll20 focused on enriching your TTRPG games by improving our platform, providing new safety tools, and launching our mobile Companion App.

Setting the Standard With Safety

We’re proud to include Safety Tools as an option for every game on Roll20 as a standard part of our community and safety features. We partnered with Evil Hat Productions to provide a card deck to players to indicate when they want to change the content and pace of the game depending on how comfortable – or uncomfortable – they feel in the moment.

You can also use our free addon to create a Game Creation Palette page to your game. Players can write what they are excited about, don’t want to include as defined by lines and veils, and leave other notes for you when you start a new campaign. Check out the tutorial to set up Safety Tools in your game.

Improving Roll20, One Week at a Time

We made hundreds of updates to Roll20 in 2021. A major focus for the Roll20 team was to improve both the player and GM experience. We concentrated on new features and enhancements to Dynamic Lighting. This included Nocturnal Vision for characters that can see in the dark, adjustable daylight mode to set the tone for the time of day, and colored lights to make your virtual tabletop shine.

The VTT toolbar received several updates over the year, too. The new Place Light tool (a staff favorite) made adding a light source to maps a single step, added a circle tool, and updated the Hide/Reveal tool for managing Explorer Mode.

Another favorite improvement that we made this year is our updated Roll20 tutorial. This standalone experience is a sandbox for you to learn the basics and try out all the features in the VTT, including Dynamic Lighting. We also revamped our YouTube channel to make it easier for you to find the exact tutorial you need as you dig in.

At the end of 2021, we experimented with dimetric and isometric maps in the VTT. Your response blew us away! What started as early access with our Pro users is evolving into a creative and well-loved feature. Keep an eye out for more features during 2022.

Map by NovemberRush

Making Moves in Mobile

Our mobile Companion App moved from beta to live in app stores in 2021. Created especially for players, your 5E character sheet is now in the palm of your hand. Use it to save table space, play in-person, or just get away from your desk.

This includes making all your ability and skill checks, roll for attacks or spells, check your inventory, and (worst case) manage your death saves. It’s available in both Android and iOS app stores.

Looking Ahead

We have big goals for 2022. We’re improving accessibility through universal design and ensuring we’re embracing best practices like strong contrast ratios. This includes updates to our UI both inside and outside the virtual tabletop. We’re adding the ability to create your characters outside the VTT and enhancing Compendium sharing.

We’re hard at work improving your experience in the virtual tabletop. Our goal is to consistently deliver faster load times and snappier interactions on the VTT, which you’ll see us talking more about all year.

We’re also spending more time making enhancements for our international audience. This includes more language support and partnering with publishers like Jambô Editora and Ulisses Spiele.

The Companion App will continue to evolve. We’re looking at which character sheets to officially support next, adding mobile sheets to our documentation for community creators, and adding Compendiums to the app.

We prioritize our work based on your feedback! Please let us know what’s working well (and what isn’t) by leaving a message and voting in the suggestions forum or using the companion app product portal.

2022 marks ten years of Roll20. We can’t wait for you to see what we have in store!

The Roll20 Team Roll20

Roll20 is the all-in-one solution for organizing and playing tabletop games online, allowing you to play your games anywhere and share them with anyone virtually. With the ability to choose from a number of popular titles built ready for your virtual tabletop, your adventures are limitless and you can get started playing with little to no prep. Dive into advanced features like Dynamic Lighting or explore macros and APIs to add some extra depth to your game. Roll20 lets you play your tabletop games, your way.