"Oh, sure... Now ye show up an' want to help. Ain't it just a bit funny that our noble King's got no interest in my work unless he's feelin' threatened? Still, I suppose now's a good a time as any. It's a strange avocation, trap settin' is. Ye spend all day makin' em, settin' em up, only to have some confounded buffoon stepping on some pressure plate an' killin' the whole gang... That's where you come in. You's cleanin' up after this baby goes off. Ain't nothin' pretty about this line of work, I'll tell ya."

--Dengus Atloff, Master Trapper, Groundskeeper of Kol-Dun Keep


Triggers are preset actions that make changes to your session when activated. Let's say you are running a session, and during your diabolical plotting you have planned a little surprise for the party. Rather than having to make all the changes necessary to convey the proper visuals, you can prep them beforehand, then activate all the changes at the click of a button.

Let's take an example encounter. Travelling merchants have come to the market at Kol-Dun Keep. They have been peddling some very expensive jewels, and the guards have grown suspicious. They believe the jewels were stolen from a merchant caravan that fell prey to some highwaymen.  

Table of Contents:

  1. Placement
  2. Trigger Settings
  3. Editing Trigger Actions


Triggers are created and edited from the Map Editor. To start, we'll jump into a session with some fleshed out maps, then open the Map Editor by pressing the "E" key. The Trigger placement tool is located on the Map Editor Sidebar. 

Clicking the Trigger tool will bind a trigger box to your cursor. Place it anywhere on the map. It's usually preferred to place it near the elements that are being changed.

Trigger Settings

When the trigger is placed, it will automatically be selected in the Map Editor Layer list to the left. A menu appears at the bottom of the sidebar with a "Gear" icon. Clicking that brings up trigger settings, where you can edit all the aspects of your trigger, including what it's named, who sees it, who can activate it, what it does and what it looks like.

This trigger is going to be a plot enhancer. It will change things when the party uncovers the secret. Because we want the party to investigate, we don't want to tip them off early that something is up with these merchants.  As such, we will have the trigger visible only to the GM. I'll also change the color and icon to reflect the actions that will take place.

It is entirely possible to have triggers activated by players. There are plenty of options available here, feel free to explore and find the solution that fits best for your situation.

Editing Trigger Actions

Now that we have the trigger properly set up, we're going to arm it with some actions. Trigger Actions are the changes that will be made when the trigger is activated.

While you are in Trigger Settings, clicking on an asset on the map will add that asset as a target for an action. If the asset is not visible, you will need to create a new action manually, then select the element from the drop-down list. The drop-down list is in the same order as your Layers List in your Map Editor Sidebar, which is useful for organization.

We are going to "uncover" the wagon, to reveal the plot twist. It's actually a trick of the light. Smoke and mirrors, if you will. What is actually happening is we are hiding the covered wagon asset, and unhiding the uncovered wagon and the treasure chest. From the player's perspective, it will look as if the wagon awning has been removed, revealing the contents. Upon clicking this trigger as a GM, all the planned actions will take effect.

Remember, if you have any questions or concerns, please reach out via Discord, the Forums, or by emailing us at support@astraltabletop.com

Happy Adventuring!