Thursday, January 9, 2014

Bringing the sense of danger to dungeons

Hurt, alone, in the dark...


Dungeons are terrible places that are hazardous in so many ways to characters. What do you do to help convey that to players?



Image by feliciacano

11 comments:

  1. With creepy music from Diablo II and other soundtracks.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. D2 Soundtrack is definitely fantastic for that!

      Delete
  2. The corpses of those who have gone before (not used enough IMO). Bloodstains. Always keep one of their resources on the grill (HP, time, information, an exit, food/fuel/warmth) so that entropy is always felt.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I really must work at keeping track of time better. I usually handwave it, but it really is important.

      Delete
    2. *Light. "Who's got the light source?" Usually, just one player will speak up... any intelligent monster that can see in the dark might just focus on them.
      *I slip up on time tracking too. When in doubt, though, I roll a random encounter check.

      Delete
    3. I highlight the presence of corpses in the dungeon all the time. If my players go into a dungeon, kill a bunch of stuff, and then head back to town, I make it a point to remind them that the goblin corpses they left lying around are still there. Sometimes I do this by staging an encounter with scavengers that have arrived to do cleanup. My personal favorite is the carrion crawler. Rot grubs are also a nice option.

      Delete
  3. That is a most excellent illustration. Worth? 3000 words, easily.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. At least 3k. Probably more. I love that she's missing a shoe.

      Delete
    2. First thing I noticed! It's great!

      Delete
  4. Everyone loves your blog post.. excellent colors & concept. Performed you actually design and style this amazing site oneself as well as performed you hire an attorney to accomplish it for yourself? Plz answer seeing that I!|m trying to style and design my own, personal weblog as well as would like to understand where by you bought this particular via. thanks a lot
    Top Ten Web Hosting Reviews

    ReplyDelete
  5. My group of players have _never_ spent a night within my current megadungeon. After one initial encounter with surface bandits who said "we don't go out after dark", they've never ever questioned it. Now, in most of the dungeon, all dead automatically animate so there's that reminder as well. So the time aspect is always present, given that I'm enforcing the Lamentations style encumbrance and trying to count their torches.
    What happens after dark? I actually hadn't intended it to be _that_ ominous, merely a few more undead and corpses rising. But now that it is that dangerous and mysterious in their minds I've had to come up with a list of things so that they won't be disappointed if they ever try.

    ReplyDelete