Content of the article: "Tips/Reminders for creating a Dungeon (‘borrowed’ from a variety of sources)."
SETTING UP YOUR DUNGEON
First, brainstorm. Write down all your (stolen) ideas, even the stupid ones.
Next, choose the best ideas. Combine them if possible.
Now determine where the dungeon will be located.
Ask yourself why it was originally built.
Ask yourself why it became a dungeon. What happened to it?
Write down what items could have been brought to a place like your dungeon.
Keep in mind that the way the players find the dungeon affects their experience.
Note the size/level of your party. Design your dungeon accordingly.
Think about how long you want your dungeon to last (in game days).
Have the players go in with a mission in mind.
DEFINING YOUR DUNGEON
Think about what feeling or tone you want your dungeon to have.
Feel free to set an overarching mood (bitterness, grief, anxiety, etc.).
Remember to monitor the pacing of your dungeon. Slow or fast?
What kind of atmosphere are you trying to create?
Remember to have detailed descriptions of rooms. More details, more interaction.
DESIGNING YOUR DUNGEON
Make your dungeon purposeful. Have clear goals set and an initial mission.
Let the players discover a secondary mission in your dungeon.
Make sure every room has a purpose of some kind. To make this easier, follow this model:
-Include one element, and the room is mediocre.
-Include two elements, and the room will be enjoyable.
-Include three elements, and the room is superb.
-Include all four elements, and the room will be remembered (in a good way).
Pay attention to your layout. Everything should make sense architecturally.
Loop the dungeon to minimize tedious backtracking and linear progression.
Link rooms by having an action in one room cause a reaction in another.
Remember to give your players freedom to explore. Have multiple routes.
Connect areas with secret and/or unusual paths.
Have landmarks in your dungeon, so it doesn’t blend together.
Make rooms the players view as ‘distant’, and rooms viewed as ‘close’.
Make rooms that are challenging, and rooms that are a breeze. Find the balance.
FILLING YOUR DUNGEON
Give players someone to talk to.
Come up with the primary monsters that will populate your dungeon.
Design and detail the everyday life of the dungeon.
Create NPCs and factions within your dungeon.
Your monsters and NPCs should have purpose, even in combat.
Create cool setups your players can exploit in combat and use to spy on NPCs.
Provide tactical challenges in combat.
Create one encounter that makes no logical sense, for a unique battle.
Fill your dungeon with lethal tricks, traps and environmental hazards.
Reward your players with memorable magical items.
Occasionally sneak in a few cursed items for good measure hahaha.
PLAYING YOUR DUNGEON
Let your players draw their maps as they go. Keep your DM maps to yourself!
Don’t read off an incredibly long backstory. The players don’t really care.
Harness the power of the false climax.
Do not take away player abilities, when possible.
Most importantly, have fun!!! 😀
- Dungeon Design: Tips and Tricks
- “Fckn speeders” – group leader restarted mission, kicked from group
- A cure for repeated resting that doesn’t change the rules
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