Thursday, November 19, 2009

How to design and populate your dungeon

I have been thinking of starting a new dungeon. Still I am missing an important thing to get my campaign going again, players. But, just for fun and in order to keep some of the creativity flowing I'm thinking of putting pen to graph paper and digging a new dungeon.

Most of you have probably read some hints on how to write an adventure. You should have a plot, a setting, antagonists maybe a McGuffin and some nice scenery. When designing dungeon adventures it's fairly common to start with the location, the windling tunnels. It makes sense. Without somewhere to explore, there will be no place to put the monsters, treasure, traps and wonders. Right?

Since a couple of days I've had my copy of Dangerous Denizens out of the shelf, thumbing trough it. For those of you who don't know of it, it's the Tellene specific monster manual for 3rd ed Kingdoms of Kalamar. I'm a fan of KoK and have many times felt it would be cool to have a game there, but it haven't happened yet. For some other reasons I've also had my copy of 1st ed Monster Manual out of the shelf a few times to look up monsters other bloggers have been writing about. There are quite a few fairly weird monsters out there for D&D, I tell you.

All of this have gotten me to think of a new way to design a dungeon! Some of these monsters just scream out to be used, or at least some of them makes you wonder "how the hell could I use that one to make sense, at all?" Could be a nice creative exercise, right? It would be fun to hear if somebody tried it out?

So, take out a monster book, pick some really odd stuff and try to figure out how to make that monster fit somewhere, or where it would look cool. I'm going to try it out myself.

2 comments:

  1. Many times when I am creating a dungeon there is the centerpiece 'thing' or type of monter I develop the dungeon around. If they have any sort of intelligence then I try to develop some sort of dungeon culture that makes sense. Long gone are the days where I have Room 3: Four Hell Hounds 100gp. Room 4: Green Dragon... No reasoning to it, but I do miss those days sometimes.

    I've never read much of the KoK, but' I've recently been purusing eBay and seen quite a few lots of KoK for sale.

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  2. Not surprising that the idea wasn't new.

    KoK is available cheap these days. Kenzer had for some reason decided to go all the way and have not only the d20 logo, but also the Dungeons & Dragons logo on their stuff. They had to empty their warehouse when the licence ended and sold books very cheap. I sure enjoyed it!

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