Kumospace tips

In our last post, Mark R told us about Kumospace, a spacial chat app he used to host Death in Venice.

So I thought I’d try it out and successfully ran Reunion with Death using Kumospace.

Reunion with Death on Kumospace – the pop-out map showing the whole floor is on the right

So here are my tips for using Kumospace:

  • Names: Ask everyone to change their name to the character’s name. You have to do that at the account level—you can’t have a name just for that session.
  • Rooms: Set up a room for the briefing and debriefing. Rooms mean that everyone in the room can hear each other—so you don’t need to be really close. I didn’t do that (rooms had only just been introduced, and I didn’t have time to work out how to set them up), and as a result, when we had the debrief everyone was piled on top of each other.
  • Announcements: For Reunion with Death’s game announcements, I copy-and-pasted them into the global chat window and then used the broadcast function to let everyone know that the information was there. (The chat gives a little bleep, but it’s easily missed if you’re busy roleplaying.)
  • Timetable: It’s hard to read the room in an online game—and I found Kumospace harder than Discord. So while I will sometimes vary the timings in a live space depending on how the game feels like it’s going, this time I stuck closely to the timetable and that worked fine.
  • Out of character area: I set up an out-of-character area that we all met in first so everyone could get used to Kumospace. (I used one of the templates—the beach. You can use anything.)

Pre-game instructions

I was sure nobody had tried Kumospace, so I sent the following pre-game instructions the day before the game.

If you’re new to Kumospace, here are some tips:

  • Please change your name to your character name (you’ll need to do this at your account level.)
  • There’s a chat function in the bottom left of the screen—I’ll use this to share game announcements.
  • The pop-out button enlarges your video and whoever you’re talking to so you can see them better.
  • The map button (rh side of the screen) shows the whole floor and where everyone is.
  • Try the “double-click to move” setting if you accidentally move around the room.
  • Some of the scenery is interactive—you can have your avatar drinking wine/coffee and eating. Have fun with them—they do not affect the game.

I’ve set up an out-of-character area (a beach setting from one of the templates) which we’ll start with. Once everyone has logged in I’ll do a brief introduction and then we’ll move to the game space, “The Hotel”. (You change floors by going back to the lobby and then choosing your new floor.)

For game abilities, you’ll have to read them out to whoever you are playing them on (and they will have to read out their Secret or Clue or whatever). I trust you not to cheat.

I’ll be wandering around, listening and occasionally making announcements. If you need me, we can either find a quiet spot somewhere or pop back to the OOC area.

Items, money, pickpocketing and combat

Like Zoom and Discord, you need to have a way to manage items, money, pickpocketing and combat if you’re running an online game with those features. Reunion with Death was designed to be run online, so it has none of those features, so I didn’t have to worry about that.

We have some thoughts on managing this in this post on our blog.

Player view

Overall feedback from players was that they liked Kumospace and it felt more natural than Zoom or Discord. The one complaint was that videos could be smaller than you get with Zoom or Discord. But they’d be happy to use Kumospace again.

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