Adding Walls, Doors, and Windows for Dynamic Line of Sight in Foundry VTT
Hello everybody! We’ve got our map created, our players added, and some tokens on a scene that can look around but there’s a problem. They can see everything on the map! Let’s fix that now by going over how to add walls, the different types and what they do, and a few things that will make walling your maps easier. Let’s get started!
First off we need to go to the left hand side of the screen and change to the wall tool which is the one with the fancy columns. This is where all the tools we’ll be using in this video are located. The ‘Draw Walls’ tool is highlighted and if we click and drag anywhere we can place our first wall. We could keep doing this but most of the time you’ll want to place a number of walls that are all connected to each other. To do that press and hold CTRL (or CMD on a Mac) and drag to start your first line. Then it’s as simple as clicking where you want each new point to be and releasing CTRL (or CMD on a Mac) before your last click to end the wall. If you want to reposition part of a wall all you have to do is click on its vertex and drag it to where you want it to be.
Looking through windows.
The simple walls we just saw block vision and movement but sometimes you want players to be able to see through a wall but not move through it like with a window. That’s where the window tool comes in. Somewhat confusingly it’s an eye with a line through it which you would think might mean you can’t see through it, but that’s not the case. If we change over to the window tool and drag out segments for the windows and move our token to them we’ll see that we can see through the window but not move through it just as expected.
What if you want your players to be able to move through a wall but not see through it? Like some kind of secret entrance or magical wall. That’s where ethereal walls come in. You can make them with the mask icon option. With it selected we can mark off this area with ethereal walls. Then, when we look through it as our token after resetting fog of war, we can’t see through the walls, but if we try to move through them, it’s like platform 9 and ¾ and we’re on the other side.
Ethereal Walls Demo
Opening a door, moving through it, and having the DM reveal a secret door
Being able to move through walls is great and all but most of the time people try to do that with doors and Foundry has your back here too. If we change over to the door icon it will unsurprisingly let us add doors to our scene. I’ll mark a door and when we check it out with our token we’ll see a door icon which we can click on that will open and allow our token to move through. If as the DM you want to prevent your players from opening a door you can right click on it to lock it. Then when a player tries to open the door they’ll hear a rattling sound and you can smugly tell them that the door is in fact locked.
If locked doors aren’t enough for you and you want to have hidden doors there’s a tool for that as well. The little incognito icon represents the secret door tool. With it selected we can draw out a secret door and when we check it out as our token it looks just like a normal wall which you can tell your players about if they manage to find it with an investigation check or by some other means.
There’s one last type of wall that we haven’t covered and it’s terrain walls which are represented by the mountain icon. Terrain walls are great because they let you see what’s within the walls but not what’s beyond them. That’s a little bit hard to understand so let’s look at an example. I’m just going to put terrain walls around this part of the map and then bring our token over here to look at it. We can see the object but not past it. This is great for a lot of environmental features like stones, columns, buildings, and helps make your maps look better by letting your players actually see them.
Terrain walls applied to the fountain and piano obscure what’s behind them while still letting us see them.
Advanced Wall Options
Here’s where it gets a little crazy. What if you want some combination of all of those things? Or if you want one way walls that you can see out of but not into or to block movement one way but not another? You can do all of that too. You can click on any wall segment to open its configuration menu. Once there you can set movement restrictions to be on or off with the movement restrictions setting. You can set perception restrictions to none for a window, normal for a wall, or limited for a terrain wall. Then you can set the wall direction which is a funny way of saying in what direction should those restrictions apply. Whether that’s both, to the left or to the right. Then there’s the also funnily named is door setting which can be set to none for not a door, door if it is a door, or secret if it is a secret door. If it is a door you can also set its door state to closed, open, or locked.
Now that’s a lot of super cool wall facts and I’m sure you’re dying for more. I’ve got a few more bits of information to share that will hopefully be useful. First is the top-most option in the wall tools which lets you select walls. You can click and drag to highlight a bunch of walls and then move them or double click on one of their vertices and change all of their settings to whatever you choose at once.
Second is this clone icon which is third from the bottom. When you have it selected, whatever the last wall configuration you set up was, it will keep making more of it. So if you make a wall that has limited perception in one direction and is also, for some reason, a door, you can change to this tool and draw out a whole bunch more walls with the same configuration.
Thirdly, we’ve got the + icon that is a translucent purple color and is second from the bottom. If we click it, it will toggle on and make it so that our walls snap to the grid. As you can see in the WebM even if I start here in the center it will bring my wall to the closest part of the grid that it lines up to.
Finally we’ve got the trash can which will take all of our well placed walls and delete them. If you accidentally hit this key there’s a lifeline. You can press CTRL + Z (or CMD + Z on a Mac) to undo and it should bring your walls back so long as you haven’t done something else beforehand.
That’s all of the basics for walls and token line of sight. Next up we’re going to take a look at lighting which is going to go through all of the great new lighting features that we got in the .7 releases of Foundry. I’ll see you in the next one.