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Improving Audio, Storage, and Performance

Rey said: Free users should not be complaining, its free. Everyone should get a subscription of some type to help Roll20 become even better. Once again, people would if they found it an at affordable price. Many free players don't opt into the monthly payment plan as they don't find it a good use of money that could be spent elsewhere. Having one game per week and being expected to spend $6 per month isn't practical for many. (Using practical storage for 4/30 days or 4/28 days and paying $6 doesn't sound so efficient). Keep in mind, some users are currently in school, strapped for money as is, or dedicate their money to creating or working on assets for their game itself. Being told that you can save storage space by buying from Roll20's marketplace does not help when many assets are quite expensive.
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Tensions are hot it seems. Would just like to say; regardless of where on this spectrum you all fall; hope you're having a nice day. :)
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Adam said: Not here to complain about audio I dunno what you guys have done to optimize performance but journal entries with the same name have become radically borked; they're not changing in with respect to the journal's unique ID anymore and things are getting mixed together stupendously. The journals are a lot quicker now, but I'm having VERY strange bugs too, now that Adam has mentioned this. Some of my compendium characters (the ones I paid for no less... :P) are, when I roll for them, saying that the DC is.. well, blank. I am going to make a bug report this in the bug forum actually, but since it was brought up here, just noting rq since another post about it will raise the profile of the issue, regardless of where. :P Ragrook said: Tensions are hot it seems. Would just like to say; regardless of where on this spectrum you all fall; hope you're having a nice day. :) You, sir, are freaking awesome. <3 You too man! And to everyone else too who I'm disagreeing with here (and agreeing with!).
I think roll20 should bump up the subscription prices alongside the bump in storage space. They're giving way too much extra space for free (tripling storage space? Too wild). They're going to lose a great chunk of profit with this.
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Bast L.
Pro
API Scripter
Jake M. said: Obviously the infrastructure isnt there to make this viable, but what if free PLAYERS can allocate 25mb chunks of storage to their free GMs (or the game specifically, not tied to the GM)  Like four players can allocate 25mb each to their gm for a +100.  Or one player does two chunks for 50mb total etc Not a bad idea, and it's actually (maybe?) currently something you can do: create characters assigned to other players, have them upload the avatar, drag it out onto the map, move to map layer, unassign the token from the character. A possibly effective method for uploading a bunch of maps, without taking up the GM's storage.
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As a free user, thanks for fucking us over. I already have about 90mb worth of non-replaceable art uploaded on here, which can only afford me to upload maybe 3 or 4 songs that are essential for my needs. If we had our cap increased to maybe 500mb, then that would be perfectly fine, but some of us CANNOT work with 100mb. We just CANT. I use songs for atmosphere, sound effects not found in the provided audio lists roll20 has, us free users NEED more space as well. We just cannot work with it if some of us can't even afford to get a subscription.
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Baldur's Great
Roll20 Mod Team
I just want to remind everyone that it's completely fine to disagree with someone else's opinion and feel free to express that, but do not make personal attacks against each other for having opinions. Please be nice. If you find yourself getting heated, maybe step back from the computer for a little while. Please refer to the Community Code of Conduct if you need to brush up on the rules: General Guidelines Discussions on Roll20 should always maintain a tone of respect and civility. To promote a welcoming environment for everyone, we ask that you refrain from: Personal  attacks or name calling Passing  judgment (be it on issues ranging from gameplay to lifestyles) Inflammatory or abusive language (e.g. communication with the intent of provoking others) Posting sexually explicit or extremely violent content Distribution of someone's personal information Engaging in or encouraging illegal activities (examples including, but not limited to: piracy, phishing, fraud, etc.) Trolling, overt or passive aggression, spam Abuse of the Report function Violating area specific guidelines     Infringement of this section is subject to moderation action as outlined by the Moderation Policy.
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Giulia said: I think roll20 should bump up the subscription prices alongside the bump in storage space. They're giving way too much extra space for free (tripling storage space? Too wild). They're going to lose a great chunk of profit with this. ide be happy with "pay for more" storage option honestly.  I pay the 99 a year. so it doesn't make much difference to me.
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I am rich by no means but I will reasonably pay for something I have value in.  I run a campaign session once a month that lasts 4-6 hours and It blows my mind to see the reactions some people are having about this. Paypal offers an option called "Money Pools", I've created one called "Campaign Support" that I've posted in the forum section of my campaign which my players can donate to.  Others could similarly use this crowd funding model to pay a dollar each month and solve many of the gripes that people are complaining about.  Countless people have offered several solutions yet push back is all that's received. If you cant see beyond self entitlement at least confront problems with solutions, and try to be adult about it.  If your not happy with roll20 then by all means, explore other options. I've tried many, and my wallet will gladly pay its due.  It not only pays my due, but it pays for those who don't as well, because if no one paid there would be no roll20.
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-
Plus
Thank you Roll20! I've been looking forward to this update, and glad to see you've given me a fair, and handsome amount of storage to work with! Keep up the good work. 
I won't go into the whole 'get out entitled free players whining about space I don't want to pay for you to have what I have to pay for' debacle going on here, but I WILL point out that it seems somewhat ironic that this news, that will likely drive more people to subscribe simply to not be annoyed by limitations they have not previously faced as users of the site, also drops on the heels of the discovery of potentially 4 million email/password combinations being stolen in a data breach.  I'm not quite convinced enough of the site's security right now to suggest anyone be paying them until they deliver some clear news on measures being taken to protect that new influx of paying customer personal information.
Such high tensions. Hope that was really worth it, which it likely will be due to whales. Damn this just makes me sad to see how common human decency is left out of things now a days.  Red Miles said: I won't go into the whole 'get out entitled free players whining about space I don't want to pay for you to have what I have to pay for' debacle going on here, but I WILL point out that it seems somewhat ironic that this news, that will likely drive more people to subscribe simply to not be annoyed by limitations they have not previously faced as users of the site, also drops on the heels of the discovery of potentially 4 million email/password combinations being stolen in a data breach.  I'm not quite convinced enough of the site's security right now to suggest anyone be paying them until they deliver some clear news on measures being taken to protect that new influx of paying customer personal information. Thats pretty fair...  just thought people really should know this.  Ragrook said: Tensions are hot it seems. Would just like to say; regardless of where on this spectrum you all fall; hope you're having a nice day. :) You are good guy / girl and I hope you are having a good day too.
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A few pieces of wisdom that have aided me in life. Not all things are for all people. Your wants won't hurt you. I appreciate Roll20 for keeping their costs in check in an effort to remain a viable, and perhaps profitable company. While you may want everything for free (I do too), a lot of their time, money and effort went into to creating this fantastic place to play, and they deserve to be able to feed their families also. While I empathize with you, having myself spent many a month eating ramen while going to school in order to buy the 2E PHB, I'm not willing to side with the starving masses on this one.
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I'm glad that Roll20 reacted quickly and has given me a way to continue using my audio files in games I run. I also look forward to when audio files are available on the marketplace and don't count against my storage total. I have right over 6 gigs of audio on Fanburst; won't be able to fit it all on Roll20; wish there was an easier way to upload and manage audio files. Maybe when time permits. I look forward to what new refinements Roll20 offers. Not looking forward to deleting all of the audio pointers to Fanburst one by one and restoring them again. But it could have been worse....
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Jesse
Plus
@Erich, what format are your audio files in?  You can save a lot of space converting FLACs to MP3, for example, as well as using lower MP3 bitrates.  Fidelity isn't as great a concern in this application because most of the time your group will be talking over the music anyway.
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Jesse R. said: @Erich, what format are your audio files in?  You can save a lot of space converting FLACs to MP3, for example, as well as using lower MP3 bitrates.  Fidelity isn't as great a concern in this application because most of the time your group will be talking over the music anyway. Hello Jesse, and thank you for the suggestion. As it stands they are all in the MP3 format with varying  bitrates depending on if it is a simple crashing sound or a band.
People here should consider that prices are dependant on the global market, making people who live in countries like Mexico (my case) have to pay double the cost for a month cost of Plus. Also, for how it is, I got actually only 3 days of Plus service because I payed on Jan 28 and three days later I was being asked for my payment method (fell back to Free User), so with inconsistencies like this, people who want to enjoy the great services Roll20 brings, payment is becoming a must. We cannot even host multiple games because of the storage amount, and losing the free-spaceless music access would be pretty bad if for a good thematic soundtrack we need to go outside (no control from the GM whatsoever for non-SFX tracks). Just a thought.
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Zach
Plus
Marketplace Creator
I welcome the change. Perhaps I can finally sell the tavern sounds I've been creating. Gives a platform to soundscape engineers as well as map creators. I know I'll have my hands in this! Perhaps even allow for specific sounds to be purchased with maps.
Cavni said: There's a lot of good discussion going on here and I thank you all for it! Allow me to clear up as much as I can. Our first priority with the release of My Audio was to get a working audio solution in place before Fanburst closes on February 25. We have been testing this feature on the Dev Server since December, and we uncapped the data limits for all the testers to collect info on the size of files they wanted to upload. Even with music files, we found that the average file size was 2.6MB. With this information, we calculated that a user with 100MB of data could upload 30+ songs and still have 20MB left over for other uploads. (It may be important to some folks to understand that Marketplace purchases are stored by Roll20, so any tokens and maps you've gotten there are not counting into your storage cap.) We estimated that's enough to run three or four fully-featured games as a free user. Next, we looked at how users currently use their space on Roll20. We found that less than one percent of free users were currently at (or near) their data cap. That may change with the launch of My Audio, but most free users have plenty of space to play around with adding audio files. We will continue to monitor data usage to see if My Audio substantially changes our users' data needs now that it's live. We want everyone to be able to enjoy multiple games! Many folks have suggested various streaming services as an alternative. In addition to Incompetech, Tabletop Audio, and Battlebards - which will remain available - we will continue to investigate other services. Nothing has been ruled out, but these possible alternatives would not be available before Fanburst shuts down on February 25. Meanwhile, we have reached out to Fanburst directly to determine what if anything can be done to make this process easier for those who used to rely on their service. 3 or 4 fully featured games? Are you for real? Im currently running only 1 game as GM and I already have more than half of the storage. As soon as the change goes live, Ill have so little space, that Ill have to start deleting files, and probably having to upload them again later on when I need them.
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I know that this is missing the point , but..... I usually make extra account and make it into GM for more storage. I know that this isn't solution, but can't people use same method that I use?? Just being curious..
So what is going to be lost to us in what order?  Are my music files going to be gone before my character sheets?  How about my custom battle maps with notes on the GM layer?  Will any of it be accessible if we upgrade afterwards or is it just gone? Some of us have +250 hours of game development time as GMs and no information what so ever as to what will be done to out content. Your's truly, An upset GM
Dylan L. said: Okay so free users are screwed then? I have not had any luck with Roll20 chat, so I often rely on Discord, which has a bot you can install that can play music. 
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Jesse
Plus
@Aviviani I'm not sure what you're asking.  Roll20 isn't deleting anything from your account.  A third-party hosting service called Fanburst which provided music to Roll20's Jukebox is going out of business.  Any music you were using that came from them will no longer be accessible after the 25th.
What bot is this?  I would be interested in using it if you could provide it. Jeremy B. said: Dylan L. said: Okay so free users are screwed then? I have not had any luck with Roll20 chat, so I often rely on Discord, which has a bot you can install that can play music. 
If we are being limited to 100mb then I assume anything over that cap will no longer exist to us.  My battle maps are arounb 1mb a piece.  Does vault storage count?  Does only music count?  What counts towards our 100mb of space? Jesse R. said: @Aviviani I'm not sure what you're asking.  Roll20 isn't deleting anything from your account.  A third-party hosting service called Fanburst which provided music to Roll20's Jukebox is going out of business.  Any music you were using that came from them will no longer be accessible after the 25th.
Thank you Roll20 workers! This is nice and I plan on testing it out...once I find my MP3's on my external drives ^.^;;. I'm just glad I have some way to have music that I've already got downloaded to play easily from the site. Again, I wish to say, thank you from a free user who just recently learned how to edit the character sheets for D&D 5e further with that little gear thing ^^. You all do so much and I hope you can keep Roll20 around and open for free users like me for a long time to come.
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Jesse
Plus
@Aviviani Free players have always been limited to 100mb.  This is not new.  Unless you were a subscriber and canceled your membership you should not be over your storage limit.  The most common music bot for Discord is called Rhythm Bot.
Thank's for the info.  I don't understand how it is calculating my mb storage at the moment; it seems inaccurate but I will take what I can get I guess. Jesse R. said: @Aviviani Free players have always been limited to 100mb.  This is not new.  Unless you were a subscriber and canceled your membership you should not be over your storage limit.  The most common music bot for Discord is called Rhythm Bot.
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For free users who don't want to us the Roll20 music function anymore, I highly recommend just keeping your music on your computer and using altacast to broadcast your own internet radio to your players.  You can get a decent hosting account at caster.fm.  This is what have been doing for  a long time and it works great.
Well this forum post is getting pretty vindictive and toxic on both sides of the fence so instead of voicing any constructive criticism I'll just reply with a joke. Roll20 Team: Fanburst is shutting down? Mmm more money!
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Sad
Pro
Sheet Author
API Scripter
I hope  roll20 will improve the folder ui and system.
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Devily said: Turning this into a "class" war with the pro/plus accounts telling the unwashed masses to get bent because we are too poor is both incredibly insulting and naive, don't be that kind of people, let's try to solve the issues that a large portion of the community is having instead of dismissing it as people being entitled. The people who turned this into a "class" war were the free accounts who are complaining about a "widening gap" between the paid and free accounts. They're being insulting and demanding they're not getting enough compared to the people who are actually paying. That's the definition of entitled behavior. The fact is that Roll20 is a business and a business's first priority is to make a profit. If it doesn't, then it's going to get shut down like Fanburst is going to be. The paid accounts are the ones that should  get the priority because they're the ones keeping Roll20 in business and allowing the others to play for free. If they're in a poorer country which makes $5 a month prohibitively expensive for them they can't expect those in "richer" countries to be in a position to subsidize them.  Instead of panicking or throwing temper tantrums because they feel they deserve more, they should be looking for alternative solutions to their problem. It's the internet. Somebody is going to work out a solution. 
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keithcurtis
Forum Champion
API Scripter
Sad said: I hope  roll20 will improve the folder ui and system. Kenton posted about that today in the Suggestion Forum.
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Sad to see Fanburst go. I really liked using music and sound effects other people uploaded so I hope something like that gets added to this new tool in the Jukebox. Discord's bots are nice to use music but it can be a hassle if you want to play both music and sound effects at the same time.
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SO! on one hand... I feel where alot of you free members are coming from... However... And I understand not EVERYONE will have a friend or player that this can be done with but... of my friends and players I am 1 of 2 Plus/Pro member and honestly... we have just been using my data if one of us runs out. The GM gives me GM privilages (Obviously during game I switch to player) and as the pro member I'm on upload duty for those who can't. And understand, I'm GMing like 2 to 5 games on ANY giving moment so I am also using my data but all it takes is ONE person to be a plus or pro member and you have an additional source and can work with each other.  Basicly guys. If we are playing togerther we're all friends here... We can be reasonable. I get that there are circumstances and yes, a bump would have been nice for free members... But there are still other options that can compliment without straight up intruding. As stated before, Tabletop Audio, Battlebards and Incompetech are still up and this ISN'T roll20's fault. Yo, give it time, see where it goes and let's all be friendly about it
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Alright... So after watching the thread unfold as much as it has...It seems a dumpster fire may have happened. I've my thoughts - but no intention to fuel it. I'll offer what I say as constructively as I can. I subscribe briefly now and again - Usually during pivotal sessions for Dynamic Lighting - So i feel like I got at least some say on both sides. I gave roll20 my business at one point, and was pondering doing it again. I gotta say, I was definitely dismayed at the outcome of this turn of events. I think that actually got me down more than the news that the F2P's got no buffs. With the jukebox going out of commission and hosting your own, it seemed like the right thing to do finally. But on the same GridToken, the decision not offer a single extra ten megs of storage to the F2P's feels a little... Cheesed. I want to say that the F2P's never lost anything, but when I look between the lines, there's a concerning amount of grime to a business move like that. But what was probably even a bigger yikes was the userbase reaction to it. The pro/Subscriber side showed a rather unsettling amount of "Screw you I got mine." I'm reluctant to use the word Toxic, but goodness, the elitism instantly shot my defenses up. The F2P's may have thrown a wobbly a little TOO sulkishly as well, so I definitely don't want to speak for them either. I was definitely pondering subscribing, but these developments, along with all the new features being locked out to freebies, definitely gave me predatory vibes, and I can't in good conscience, vote with my dollar by signing up for a few more laps on terms like this. One thing that's got me down as well, as how interpersonally, on web and off, so many people have been completely non-negotiable and won't budge an inch on pivotal business matters - Here I was holding out for an exception. The PR fiascos that ensued and the subsequent double-downs not long ago remind me of that, so I'm actually legit afraid to reach out to staff for opinions and help. In the end though, profit is everything to sustaining a business. I don't know the business-side consequences of raising data limits on F2P's, but surely something as little as a 25-50-100 meg raise wouldn't break the bank THAT hard would it? (Feel free to refute this if someone's got the math on it,) But that's NG me always looking out for the little guy. Should the F2P's get some improvements though, I could definitely see myself renewing a subscription. Just my 2 coppers. Stay classy folks.
im a pro user.  i use discord for my games chats.  Who knows, maybe we do that for music.   Here's a piece of advice.  Rather than complain that you arent getting additional storage, maybe ASK?    I have no issues with free users asking for a bump, but by complaining right away?  For a service that you get for free?  (most of my players get it for free as well, as I pay for the stuff). I say this as someone who both works in software and works in business.  What the roll20 guys said about 1% makes sense.  Because assuming its cloud based, or even if its not, increasing the datastorage by that much when its not likely used WOULD have an impact on servers.   What might be nice would be a quota system, where free users could request an increase when needed, rather than just flat out given.  That would alleviate some of the high usage free users issues, without causing undue taxing on the servers.  But once again, ask, rather than say you're being screwed by something that isn't roll20's fault.  
As for actual math?  I dont know the current numbers, but I do remember in 2017 when they talked about hitting 2million users.  i wonder how many of them are active?  because thats important too.   But lets say its 2 million.  Its likely more.  Lets talk about 50 meg raise for 2 million users.  (where it would be rare if its anything greater than 15% active users),   Thats 50 terabytes. (again, id bet that number is likely bigger, as thats over a year old) For users that mostly dont use it, according to roll20.  Increasing that amount of storage would be ridiculously expensive, and it would either mean more capital investment or the costs would have to go to the advertisement, or pro users.   And honestly, to a certain degree, thats what many pro users might be thinking.   Now i know we all have computers with terabytes, and we're thinking, "gee thats only about 15 Grand, maybe?".  But on servers?  with indexing the data?   That can be indeed a software nightmare.  For something that honestly, probably isnt needed. Again, I would go back to a request system.  Rather than just unilaterally give the free users (who again, i imagine are more inactive than active, thats the reality of websites), additional storage, creating some type of system allowing them to REQUEST additional storage.  Its a little more work on the roll20 folk than not doing it at all, but its a realistic compromise, and something that is more likely financially feasable.   Many pro users honestly feel that they pay for the free users.  And to many extents, thats often true.  In many gaming groups its rare that everyone is pro.  In a larger scale, its not fully true.  But there is still some proof to that.  You need to support your paid customers first, and then look to support your marketting reasons (the free customers).  You cant completely ignore the free customers though, because without them, the paid customers wouldnt have people to play with, and thus wouldnt pay for the service.  So obviously you cant ignore the free customers either.   But as others have said, this just came out.  You have to look at supporting the paid customers first.  And then step 2 is see what the real need of the free customers is.  (which is why i suggest implementing some type of storage request system).
As far as the free customers not getting improvements, i disagree with that too.   Maybe not everything, but they absolutely have.  While I dont care for it, Charactermancer is one of them.  Them constantly working on the sheets is another.  
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Oh great. Now I have to somehow replace thousands of music files and sound FX that I have integrated to play with all my maps, and sound macros, as well as players and encounters attacks and spells. Just freaking GREAT!
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Giulia said: I think roll20 should bump up the subscription prices alongside the bump in storage space. They're giving way too much extra space for free (tripling storage space? Too wild). They're going to lose a great chunk of profit with this. Yeahhh... no. I can barely afford Pro, which is required for how I run my game, as it is. I live in another country than what Roll20 runs in, and my country's dollar isn't nearly as strong, PLUS I have to pay for a fee to convert the currency type when paying. Screw THAT!
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Just as an aside: The statement that 'free users' provide no fiscal net benefit is economically incorrect. If you want a free user to pay more than the (ad and other) revenue he gives you from your sponsors (your average sponsorship deal, and the money you get for it, very much takes users on your platform into account...), you need to incentivize them, not alienate them. That said: There is no such thing as a "free user". I don't pay a dime myself and roll20 is making money off of me playing here. Or, they should be, with appropriate sponsorship deals as they usually work in the industry. If they're not, that might be something to look into.
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Ravenknight
KS Backer
Havoc said: Can't wait for a Roll20 Music Marketplace. Oh, I would be so happy with this. I'm quite sure that you can buy packaged sounds for "The Other VTT" online. My time is far too spread out these days to look for cool effects.
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Bart B.
Plus
Marketplace Creator
I like this new feature. I always wanted to upload my own music. It's just a bit sad that this update came when I finally had my entire list of music ready, oh well... To those not knowing how to get new music. I've seen many solutions already here. But the way i'm going to do it is just to search the same songs I had on youtube and have those video's downloaded as mp3's.
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Stephen D said: @Dylan L; free users do not pay to keep the lights on and contribute nothing to Roll20. Guess what; Roll20 has costs. This is the real world. If no one pays then Roll20 ceases to exist. How about saying 'Thanks Roll20 for providing this service for free to most users' or 'Thanks to the contributors for paying for my gaming every week'? Having said that, I think Roll20 should introduce another tier; maybe $1 /month for an extra 200-500 MB of storage. No, free users contribute to roll20 with advertising through their games on mobile/social. They need more space to host a simple game, in my opinion they should have 300-500mb not more.
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Dr. Frank said: Roll20 is scaling according to the industry, exactly what it would cost for you to host your own cloud server to host your own whatever shared app.  I can host a linux server to host exactly what I need from Roll20 for $10/ month. With what they offer for API services, they are super worth it.  If you super don't want to pay for what you get.... There are ways to do remote hosting of every image that you upload to Roll20. Their business model is based on DM's upgrading for Dynamic Lighting. That's a lot more profitable than data.  Fog of war is free. Why don't players map for themselves? Players used to draw as we go back in the 80's.  There used to be a role for the mapper in the players lineup, one was the caller.  Players nowadays.... blah blah blah... As I said, mine IS REQUIRED. I have a custom character sheet which requires Pro service to use, as well as several API scripts that the game can't function without... sooooooooo YEAH. 'Players nowadays' indeed.