What Is Scabard?

Scabard is a website that is an RPG campaign manager. It is designed to replace the binders GM's of tabletop RPG's typically keep stuffed with all of their campaign notes.

The GM can communicate to the players facts their characters would know about the campaign, while keeping other things secret.

Players and other users can subscribe to campaigns they're interested in and leave comments for the GM's.

Scabard is designed to be rules agnostic. We have campaigns for D&D (various versions), Pathfinder, Savage Worlds, Warhammer, and a host of others. The stats tabs on each page are like freeform spreadsheets and can be populated with any rules-specific data the GM wants.

What Scabard is not

Scabard was not designed as a virtual table top (apps that enable playing table RPG's remotely). There are other websites that do that really well. Nor is Scabard a game in and of itself.


Scabard monetizes by selling subscriptions.

As an Amazon Associate, Scabard earns from qualifying purchases.


Scabard was written by Ed Larmore, a software developer and RPG gamer, with sys admin and marketing help from Sean Donner.

The website took four months to develop. We began in late December, 2012; and went live on April 18, 2013. But we continue to make changes as users request new features and report bugs.

How Scabard works

The backend of Scabard uses Java EE and a Neo4j graph database to store its data. Originally, we had tried to use Ruby on Rails with a relational database, but it proved too difficult to shoehorn arbitrary relationships (the connections feature) into a relational database. So we decided to store what is essentially a gigantic graph (nodes and edges) into a noSQL database designed specifically for that purpose.

With the cypher query language, we can do queries that walk several edges at once, enabling features like "Advanced Connections". To do likewise in a relational database would be a notoriously slow "join from hell."

The front-end uses JavaScript, including some powerful open source JavaScript libraries: JQuery, JQuery UI, mustache templates, and JavaScript Infovis Toolkit (JIT).

Contact Info

We're located in Silicon Valley in California. If you'd like to contact us, please email us at [email protected]