Monday, August 2, 2010

Dungeons Revisited

Tell me if you have heard this one before? A party of adventurers goes into a dungeon/ruin/temple/tower/mine/cave and kill everything and tale all the treasure. So you have heard that one.

Now there is an empty dungeon/ruin/temple/mine/cave and I am assuming that since most of us are not in a Michael Bay film where everything gets blown up at the end, these adventuring spots remain intact. If you hated your old neighbors the new ones may be worse.

1 - The dungeon remains empty. Normal animals will not because of the stench of death inside.

2 - Small wildlife starts using the ground level as shelter.

3 - A large wildlife creature makes a home. There is a 25% it is accompanied by a mate.

4 - The adventurers missed a few of the lesser denizens. Having no one to protect them they leave, but not before setting traps everywhere.

5 - An old boss returns after the party has slaughtered everyone else. He refortifies the area with better doors, locks and more guards.

6 - The primordial thing that the critters were keeping happy has now awakened and it's hungry.

7 - The place is now haunted with the spirits of those the adventurers slaughtered.

8 - Bandits set up camp. They store their stolen goods here until they can sell them off.

9 - A tribe of critters move in. They redecorate the whole setting. Even expand the old place to make more room for all of them. And there are a lot of them.

10 - A real nasty s.o.b. decides this is where he will develop his stronghold and from here he will rule the world.

11 - The lord of the land has given permission for the place to be rebuilt. Hundreds of people flock to the area looking for work.

12 - Due to time and condition the place collapses.

So if you have a campaign that you plan to run for a while and there are all these places dotting the landscape just because one party clears out everything might not mean it's done. The temple on the mountain can be used again. The GM will just need to figure out who decided who moved in. Monsters tend not to be too picky where they squat.


  1. I think that's an important consideration. In real life, even, if somebody leaves a house there, something's going to live in there. Maybe it's just rats and roaches, maybe it's a family of dogs, and maybe it's a couple of people squatting on the property.

    Of course, this being Dungeon World, the rats and roaches will be goblins, and the dogs would be hellhounds and the people would be orcs and ogres, but you get the idea. Unless something is utterly destroyed, somebody will reuse it for something.

  2. #6 really tickles me. At low levels the heroes clear the dungeon-complex, at great personal peril. They haul the loot away, and get lauded by the locals. Then they promptly forget everything about it.

    Sometime later -- the heroes now being even more heroic -- they travel through the same region. When they come to the village near the dungeon they are cursed and pelted with vegetables by the angry peasants.

    Whatever nameless horror the kobolds took great care to feed regularly is now using the local farmlands as a snack-bar.

    /makes note of this for future use.


  3. Actually, I like #7 the best.
    : )