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Deaf-friendly?

I am completely new to the D&D game and I have decided to end this shame and learn how to play, which is how I came across this site. However, I have a question... Is it... required to be able to hear/talk on voice chat to play? Or is it easy to get in and play with people without needing the voice chat?
1339697179
Balladeer
Roll20 Mod Team
That'll depend entirely on the group, but it's certainly possible to play most any roleplaying game via text. While my weekly Tuesday game uses voice (but not video), my weekend game has gone 50+ sessions with text only (Not even a virtual table. Just plain old skype chat.)
1339697440
Agemegos
KS Backer
That depends on the approach that the group you play with takes. I use a very chatty style that depends a lot on the voice channel and that would be inaccessible to the deaf. But a lot of players who are more used to online games with no voice channel prefer to use the text chat channel much more than, or even instead of, the voice channel. If you could find a group that prefers to play that way the game ought to be accessible to the deaf. I have played RPGs in IRC and by posting messages to forums: the obstacle is my slow typing, not a need for voice.
1339709519
We use chat only for RP. ( Still on Skype for out of character banter though. ) There are some things that actually works out better in text then spoken. Not everyone is a born actor. :) So yes, Its doable and very fun.
1339764499
PA
Plus
Absolutely. I've been playing D&D 4e since it came out in text-based chat only. Works out just fine.
I find it keeps players more in character when using text than voice. So, IMHO, it is not only doable but even preferable. Still, you'll have to find a group working that way (or set up one yourself).
like Agemegos says, if you can't hear, then everybody needs to use the text chat window. If the other players just talk using the webcam, you'll miss what they are saying. As other say, gaming and chatting in the text chat works just fine, and is how folks have been doing it prior to tools like Roll20 or Skype for decades. I would say, that there is the makings of a new suggestion for Roll20 in this. Pipe the audio into a speech to text tool so what people say turns into text in the chat window. According to a conversation I had with an interview candidate today (he works at a dictation software company), Windows 7 actually has a built-in utility for this that apparently doesn't suck. My own clients use DragonDictation (the MD version). Just saying, that it is not impossible to solve this problem for a deaf person while still allowing the other players to talk. Heck, getting a chat log of the verbal conversations would actually be pretty cool. It might also rein in some of the out-of character banter because players could directly see that what they say is getting logged and disrupting the narrative text.
1340528065
Axel Castilla
KS Backer
Is it... required to be able to hear/talk on voice chat to play? Or is it easy to get in and play with people without needing the voice chat? Additional text chat features in Roll20 definitely will be very helpful to play only via text if it's neccesary for you, or if you feel that text chat is more immersive and it keeps players more in character: <a href="http://community.roll20.net/discussion/1096/chat-modalities-for-roll20#Item_1" rel="nofollow">http://community.roll20.net/discussion/1096/chat-modalities-for-roll20#Item_1</a>