Monday, January 09, 2023

The Dungeon23 With No Name

The idea behind the #Dungeon23 thing is explained here, but in short it's to build a 365-room dungeon, one day/room at a time. I can probably do that, or something like that, anyway. It may not be a full 365-room dungeon; I may make a bunch of dungeons, and I see at least a couple of people are doing hex crawls. There are lots of options, but at least for now I'm keen to try the basic BIG DUNGEON concept, so we'll see how that goes.

One thing I will not be doing is posting a room a day. I don't want to clog the feeds of what few readers I have with such noise, so instead I'm going to try to post a week's worth of content every "Megadungeon Monday".

Rules and statistics will be in Lamentations of the Flame Princess format, just because that's what I'm most used to. You can find a free copy of the rules here, but it's basically -- ho ho -- B/X D&D.

In the words of Mario, here we go!

1. Stone doors, covered in moss and, underneath the moss, ancient carvings of serpents and trees. The doors are too heavy to move or open by normal means, but the left door has a crack large enough through which an unarmoured character can squeeze.

2. Six statues, each holding a stone dish. They are recognisable as local but ancient deities/heroes/saints, and each has a name carved into their plinth. The names begin with the letters A, C, E, H, T, and X; allocate names according to your own setting. A, E, and T each have a single silver coin in their bowl.

If a character places a coin -- a silver at least -- in each of the bowls of C, H, E, A, and T -- in that order -- they glow for a few moments then immediately gain a level -- set their xp to the appropriate number -- and all associated benefits. This works only once. If the players try anything dodgy like putting a single coin in C, taking it out and putting it in H, and so on -- also known as the Top Cat Manoeuvre -- or taking their money after receiving the reward, then it either doesn't work, they lose the reward, or perhaps something worse happens, like 1d6 BLUEROBES appear from nowhere and attack.

3. A toppled statue of E (see room 2), in a different pose and not holding a bowl.

4. Broken furniture and 3 REDROBES. One tries to flee to room 6 to raise the alarm. They are unaware of the secret door.

A small wooden box is lost amongst the broken furniture; it contains 88sp.

5. A smooth shaft leading down to room XX. Marks indicate that something with very large claws climbed its way up in recent times.

6. 6 REDROBES noodle around a vast hall full of rotten and smashed wooden pews, with a damaged mosaic in the floor, depicting a great serpent. A carving in the south wall depicts a god/hero/saint associated with gateways; the eyes are holes, indicating a space behind the carving. There is a hidden mechanism that spins the entire carving, allowing access to the space beyond.

The mosaic is worth 800sp if removed and counts as three Oversized items (Rules & Magic, p38; or about 800 coins in Old-School Essentials; it could of course be broken up and carried in more, smaller, chunks, but I leave the exact details to you); it will take at least three skilled artisans a week of work to recover the mosaic intact.

There are 30sp and 3gp scattered amongst the wreckage.

7. A spiral staircase, smoothed with use, leads down to room XX. Save versus Breath Weapon to avoid slipping and taking 1d6 damage.

8. Shelves hold ancient scrolls that crumble at the touch. In the corner huddles a humanoid skeleton wearing faded orange robes -- but not ORANGEROBES -- holding an enchanted staff. The skeleton is not human; the skull is elongated and the limbs are disproportionate.

The staff is either a Staff of Snakes, or whatever you like. If the scrolls are somehow preserved, they are ancient records worth about 92sp to historians.

9. Piles of tattered and torn robes in various colours. Feel free to have them shift a little in the breeze, but they are quite inactive as they are ROBES that have either been killed or are yet to be.

And yes, I know I haven't described the ROBES yet. Bear with!


  1. I think this is a great idea. I am tempted to do the same in some way. But I think you are right re seven locations per week. Mind you I've played in campaigns which have taken the party one whole session to explore a single room!

    1. 365 rooms at that pace would keep you going a while!

  2. Nice, I'm looking forward to following this! I like the statues and "gamification" (god I hate that word) of the different words you could spell out for different effects (HATE, ATE, ehrm, CAT, and so on).

    And this is how I interpret your last line: "...ROBES yet. Bear with!" --> Bear with robes!

    1. That's a great idea about the different words. I may look into adding that!