I recently sat through a business meeting that made an innovative use of sticky notes. Essentially, ideas were generated and written on stickies by the people in the meeting, and these were stuck to a wall. Later, they were grouped, then prioritized by physically moving the notes up and down.
I’ve used this process at work a few times since, and it works wonders. In thinking about how to apply it to an RPG, I realized that on the plus side, it could give a GM an updated “index card box;” whereas on the downside, it requires a great deal of real estate in terms of wall space.
Enter iCardSort, an iPad app that gives you a virtual wall and sticky notes. Sticky notes can be colored, and dragged and dropped anywhere on the virtual workspace. Sticky notes that touch form “groups,” which can be moved by dragging with two fingers.
I’m using this for an upcoming Dresden Files RPG game. Each “city location” has a unique color, which is shared by the “face” of that location. Allies of the “face” get the same color. Most of those are “grouped” according to this color, but some individuals who are primarily in another location might be in a different group.
When you double-tap a note, it opens a larger view, where you can store text that doesn’t show up on the “sticky note” view. Given the fluidity of FATE stat blocks, they’re pretty easy to fit in here.
It’s been pretty rare that I’ve paid for a full-version app within 5 minutes of using a demo. iCardSort does exactly what I need it to. I know it violates my rule of GMing with no pants on–this is pretty hardcore planning for a GM like me, but the tool works.