Tuesday, March 13, 2012


I'm suffering from dungeon-obsession right now. I catch it sometimes, like an intermittent fever.
Not that I'm interested in playing any old-school games or anything (alright, there's Tunnels & Trolls, there's Kata Kumbas… but playing any of those requires jumping through hoops I don't want to be through right now; this moment, even Jason Morningstar's incredibly streamlined and promising Dungeon Squad 2 looks a bit heavy on the "DM" side to me). Rather, I'm obsessed with the idea of designing some kind of game which will again make dungeons work for me — except I've been running circles around this particular idea for, I don't know, two years now?
I draft down bits and pieces of rules, but the whole thing never gels, and I start from scratch again. I've got multiple notebooks half-full of this stuff by now. Only one thing I nailed down for sure: I want the map of the dungeon to be in the middle of the table during play, visible to all (the full map, yes).
Which finally brings me to the reason I posted about this today… I think I just realized something about my obsession, which is: I'm primarily in love with the graphical representation of dungeons — with maps, especially if cute, hand-drawn and detailed. I should have known: that's why I follow Tony Dowler's sweet Year of the Dungeon to get my regular fix, for example. In fact, what triggered this untimely realization was probably learning about Paul Hughes's kickstarter project for a giant random dungeon poster-map (I sure like his drawing style, involvement with the Gary Gygax personality-cult notwithstanding). Or was it the One-Page Dungeon Contest launching?

1 comment:

  1. Things you may want to do.
    Take a glimpse at how the boardgame Dungeoneer works. See what could work in an rpg on an abstract level. Of course, you don't want to create decks of cards for each dungeon, but I found the basic idea pretty solid.
    I can give you one of my editions next time we meet in case.