Sunday, April 24, 2011

Foray into Dungeon Building, Part 9

Dungeon dressing time!

From what I can tell, most dungeon dressing advice centers on the original use of each room and there are often a lot of tables to determine what kind of room each room is/was. That's helpful if…

1) those tables are used sparingly instead of for every room. Otherwise you can get really weird rooms next to each other.

2) you haven't already mapped out the rooms yet. It's a bit awkward when you roll "auditorium" for a 10x10 room.

3) you're dressing a section of your dungeon that has actually been inhabited in the last thousand years or so, so that the actual remains of what the room was used for in the first place are still in the room.

That's all well and good, but not the situation I'm in. I'm looking for tables that I can use for each and every room, for rooms that I've already mapped out. I also don't really want PCs to be able to tell what rooms in Level 1, Area 4 used to be. This area has been uninhabited by sentient life for a long, long time, as it's the "front door" of the whole megadungeon. No one wants to live in it, as it's pretty unfortified and it is the first place intruders go. Whatever vestiges might have been left behind of the original trappings of these rooms, they've been removed or have rotted away hundreds of years ago. Whatever is now found in these rooms is unconnected to the original uses of these rooms.

So, for my purposes, for Level 1, Area 4, I'm using this table, rolling 1d4 times for each room. The first nine entries are OSRIC tables (pages 151-154).

  1. Air Currents Table
  2. Odours Table
  3. General Table
  4. Noises Table
  5. Furnishings Table
  6. Alchemy Lab Table
  7. Container Contents Table
  8. Personal and Miscellaneous Table
  9. Clothing and Footwear Table
  10. Beyond the Black Gate Sub-Table (Roll 1d4. 1: Random Trap/Secret Door Disarming Table [with no effect if messed with] 2-4: Weird Things in Rooms Table)
For doors, I'm also going to use Al's Doors tables, except that I'll only roll a d6 instead of a d8 on the "Door is made of…" table.

Obviously, this is a lot of rolling. I may use this electronic dice roller instead of rolling them all by hand. I'm also not going to bore you with the details of all my rolls. Two rooms should suffice…

Room 1: The smashed remains of a crate and some dirty white cloth lie in a corner. If inspected, the cloth is found to be a rotting apron with huge gashes in it.

Room 2: Along a wall lie a rusting sifter, half-covered with a blue-greenish semi-liquid, a rusted, broken chopper and the rotting remains of a wooden stand.