The short intro (TL;DR)
The Forge is the first and only fully integrated, turn-key, high-availability hosting solution for your Foundry VTT games. A truly unique "no-nonsense" experience, with unmatched features, speed & availability—at prices so low, you'll wonder if our accountants were locked in a dungeon.
Get up and running in seconds, and experience everything FoundryVTT has to offer, without the headaches of running your own infrastructure.
The Forge makes your games available online 24/7, loading blazing fast with no bandwidth caps, and provides you with many unique features, including:
- An extremely convenient automated import process for your local content.
- Access to the amazing Bazaar for quota-free and instant installs of packages
- The Forge's Game and User management features, providing a unique user experience
- ...and lots of other great features you can discover further below.
The seamless experience and many "Quality of Life" improvements provided by The Forge are unrivaled, and so is our pricing—the most flexible and affordable no-hassle experience you can find anywhere for your Foundry VTT games.
The Forge is unique, magical, and downright overpowered, just ask anyone! Use it so you can concentrate on what you do best: crushing your adventurers instead of fiddling with router and server settings!
Want more details? Stay a while and listen...
Explorer mode: your 60 minutes of GM fame
Don't have a Foundry VTT license yet? Want to see what the possibilities are? Use our "Explorer mode" feature! In this mode, even with a free "player" Forge account, you can try things out as if you were a Game Master, for up to 60 minutes. This makes it easy for you to experience the true power of the Foundry Virtual Tabletop combined with all the convenience of the Forge.
See this video for an example of how it works:
You can access this feature if your account has no license key, by clicking "Try Foundry Now". After 60 mintues have elapsed, the data created for your exploration instance gets reset and like any good ability, this feature has a short cooldown period before you can use it again... and like they say in Silicon Valley, the Forge's sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic.
Available 24/7, no bandwidth limits
The Forge doesn't impose any kind of bandwidth limitation on you, and your game servers are always accessible, 24/7. Your players don't have to wait for you to come online if they want to update their character sheet or read preparation material you have provided.
You can also choose where to host your servers, whether in North America, Europe, or Asia & Oceania regions. With the Story Teller tier, you can also have a unique URL per world and run multiple servers in parallel (more on that later).
The Import Wizard lets you hit the ground running
The first thing you'll encounter when starting out with the Forge is the Import Wizard. When designing the Forge's infrastructure, one of our architectural decisions has been to not provide FTP access, because FTP introduces additional technical complexity for users and goes against all three of The Forge's mission statement of "Security, Convenience, Performance".
Since our goal is to provide a painless "turn-key" user experience, we built the Forge's Import Wizard. Simply point it to a local folder on your machine (your existing Foundry Data folder for example) and it will detect everything in it, import your worlds, install the systems and modules from the Bazaar, split your assets into the Assets Library and rewrite all the world's database (so that all asset urls in your worlds and custom modules now point to the geo-distributed URLs of the Assets Library instead). All in one step!
Flexible storage for all your needs
With the Forge, you have two storage areas:
- Data storage: This is for your worlds' database and any custom modules or systems you install. On average, we found that a game world uses 5 to 10MB, with larger worlds taking 20MB, so the 500MB limit will easily meet your needs for quite a while.
- Assets library: This is a separate type of storage for all your images, videos and music. These are bigger files than what goes into your data storage, so the basic plan includes an assets library storage quota of 3GB from the start.
Why separate "assets" from "Data storage" at all? So that we can serve content as fast as possible to you and your players (more details below).
But there's more to it than that: anything installed from the Bazaar Marketplace does not consume your storage quotas, so the quotas above are more than sufficient for most users (again, more details further below).
The Forge's "Assets Library" self-optimizing storage
The Assets Library is built on a S3 storage abstraction unique to The Forge.
Any files uploaded to the Assets Library will automatically be replicated in over 50 servers across the globe, so that your maps, tokens, music, etc. will always be loaded from the closest server. This means that if you have players in different continents, they will always load their scenes with the highest bandwidth and lowest latency possible.
On top of this, we also have an Image Optimizer feature which automatically serves images in WebP format (when the browser supports it), reducing loading times by more than 50 percent.
Further optimizations include:
- "instant uploads" with automatic assets reuse: any image/asset that has already been uploaded by you or another user will not require you to transfer it when adding it to your Assets Library, saving you time and bandwidth.
- mass uploads that bundle small files together to increase throughput and reduce roundtrip latencies during uploads
- ...and various other behind-the-scenes performance optimizations we have developed to make your user experience better.
All of this is transparent to you and you don't have to worry about any of that technical complexity. You can simply enjoy the really cool user interface we have built to manage your files.
The Bazaar: the best way to install & update modules
All public systems/modules are available on the Bazaar, and we also have some premium content being sold by talented creators, that you can install seamlessly with the Forge.
With the Forge, modules and systems can be installed (or updated) from the Bazaar instantaneously. Yes, seriously. Being able to install or update hundreds of modules on The Forge within seconds—instead of the slow "download and install" process of a traditional local installation—is a game-changer.
Thanks to the optimized technologies we have developed to allow instant deployments, you gain incredible efficiencies not only in terms of time, but also in terms of storage.
Anything installed from the Bazaar will not be using any of your storage quota, so you can install those multi-gigabytes music packs or animated maps and it won't consume your quota at all. Let that sink in: there is over 21 GB of content available in the Bazaar (as of early 2021).
So, suddenly, the "500MB Data Storage" and "3GB Assets Library" storage quotas (included in the basic subscription level) look a lot more generous, don't they?
Game Manager & User Manager
The Game Manager and User Manager features are exclusive to the "Story Teller" subscription tier, and they are a game changer in their own right. The kind of user experience they provide is the original seed of the idea that prompted us to design The Forge the way we did.
With the Game Manager, you get a unique Forge Game for each of your Foundry Worlds.
- This means that each world has its own unique URL. When you access the URL, you launch straight into that world—you never need to return to the setup menu again! And if you have multiple groups playing during the week, you don't need to remember to switch to the correct world either! The Forge will switch worlds for you automatically, based on which game your players are accessing.
- If you also have multiple Foundry licenses, this also allows you to be playing in one game while a player from another group is accessing their character sheet from a different world by having both worlds launched simultaneously.
The User Manager creates a tighter integration between your players and their Forge accounts.
- When a user is invited into your game, a player is automatically created for them. When they access the game, they enter the game immediately—no need to go through a login screen again!
- The User Manager also allows the GM to join the game as any of the players, or to create and join as a new temporary player with a single click.
The Game Manager can be enabled or disabled on your account, and the User Manager can be enabled on a per-game basis. Have a look at our feature update video which gives an overview of how these features work:
Amazing Value. Unbeatable Pricing.
Last but not least, is the question of pricing. You might think that with all we have to offer, our offering would be more expensive than life insurance premiums in the Kingdom of Barovia, but it's not.
Our basic "Game Master" tier is only $4.49 if billed monthly (or $3.99 per month if billed annually, saving you over 10%). This makes the Forge's Foundry VTT hosting extremely competitive, even with the cheapest cloud servers you might want to rent (if you are tech-savvy enough and have an unsatiable love for self-inflicted headaches).
We also offer two higher-level tiers which provide additional features and even more generous quotas. That said, if all you want to do is to increase your assets library quota, you don't even have to subscribe to these higher tiers! Instead, you can pay for extra space, on top of your base subscription, and get—for example—18GB of storage for $9. OP? Totally. We're looking at you, min-maxers.
"Jeff, don't write this out on the features page, you'll wreck the Forge's revenue." — The bankers
If you think we're insane, wait until you see the details in our plans page, for both hosting tiers as well as the extras.
Other minor features
Still here? Alright, will you go away if I give you a couple more features? There, it's dangerous to go alone, take these:
- Mark specific games as "favorites", so they're always at the top of your list
- Keep track of how much time each player spends in a game
- Automatic audio/video relay server configuration for mobile users
- Various other "Quality of Life" improvements to your gaming experience
- A vibrant and amazing community of users in our forums and chat channels
Honestly, we're running out of calories to research and list everything here. The best way to experience it all is to sign up and benefit from the free 14 days trial, so you can give it a try without getting charged before you commit to the decision. We're confident you will like what you see (otherwise we will blame it on the marketing department).