As this is an online game a fair amount of effort has gone into making the game run smoothly with as little effort as possible. Whilst the setup may seem complex in the number of different systems that are referred to we have found each has their use:-
Maptool / Mote
This is the virtual tabletop that we use – Mote is a successor to Maptool and during the course of this campaign we converted to using mote. Both Maptool and Mote are free to use and all of the functionality is available. Whilst they are scary to start with there is a lot of functionality and the community is really helpful if you get stuck. Initially I looked at roll20 as an option but for an ongoing campaign felt that these tools had more flexibility, plus it was much easier to use once I had developed the framework. Luckily I have a good broadband connection at home and so I run it as a server on one of my home PCs. This means that even when I am staying away with my job I am still able to connect and run the game. It also allows the players to access the game while the game is not in progress.
Within maptool / Mote I have developed my own campaign framework that is focused on the tabletop elements of the game. There is a dedicated pathfinder framework available to use but I didn’t want all of the character sheet functionality that it offered. This means that players manage their character sheets offline and only use the tabletop for making rolls, combat and the map capabilities.
We use mumble as our chat system. As I already had a mumble server for online gaming we just make use of it for the game.
This is used primarily as a central location for player information. The players upload their characters here, I can upload pictures and handouts and all of the character generation is housed here. The advantage of onenote is that it’s shared meaning everyone can access it and update it while we are playing. It saves having to load unneccesary things into maptool and allows players to make / keep notes easily between sessions.
All of my players have access to herolab a character creation / management tool for Pathfinder. Within the framework there is also a stat importer that can make use of standard stat blocks as well as herolab generated ones. This means that as a GM it is easy to prepare the adventure in maptool – simply load the map, add some tokens and then import the relevant statblocks.