Example Input - Off the Beaten Path


i fucking hate writing ...
Staff member
Fear not, I'm absorbing everyones comments on these posts. Once I complete my first pass I'll come back and address the points made.

Also, up four pounds today ... because to celebrate my weight loss I ate a pint of ice cream and a box of donuts for dinner. Neither were really satisfying. I wanted a pear port tart, I think?

Off The Beaten Path 1
The Tomb of Harven Half SKull, by Joseph Bloch and published by BRW Games, is a small cave system dungeon of around twenty rooms. Putting a water feature in a room is not only common in upscale homes from DWEL magazine but in dungeons also. In this case there’s a great cavern fed by a river with a pirate ship floating in it. In another chamber you can find the river flowing through it, on the way to the pirate ship chamber, with a stone bridge over the river.

Two interesting things happen here. First, there is a key hanging UNDER the bridge. It’s obvious. OF COURSE there’s something under the bridge. But, it’s only obvious AFTER the fact. How many parties will just travel over the bridge and never look under it, to find the hidden key?

Further, the river exits this chamber through a hole in the wall, running completely underground for about sixty feet before reaching the pirate ship chamber. While the ship chamber is reachable through other, dry, tunnels, if a party takes the time to explore the underground river they will find a small side chamber, partially above the waterline. Lying there, in the shallow air pocket, is a skeleton … wearing a magic ring. Well, I mean, there’s are giant crabs back there also, but, hey, have you seen the price of genuine Alaskan King Crab Legs?

Joking aside, these are excellent examples of placing an object in a non-intuitive location. It’s not just hidden under a loose stone with a low percentage to discover. Both are in places that, when the party discovers them, they will say “Of course!”

Off The Beaten Path 2
Wizards Mutants Laser Pistols is a zine that features the Beneath the Ruins dungeon by Alex Fotinakes. Issue three , in particular, features two interesting examples. The first is the classic waterfall. A sandy beach runs alongside an underground river. Following it upstream the party sees 3 foot hole in the wall with water crashing out of it in to a pool at the bottom … the source of the underground river. Climbing up to investigate the hole the water is rushing out of could loosen a stone … revealing a hidden area behind the waterhall where a chest rusts away. Phat L00T for those curious enough to look further!

In another area the party enters an empty room. There’s another exit on another wall. But … a party that searches will find that there are two other doors in the room, covered by illusions. They are immediately apparent to anyone running their hand along the walls. They lead to entirely hidden subsection of the dungeon, will with treasure, hell gnomes, and the Pyramid of Hate!


8, 8, I forget what is for
Good examples of why XP for GP can be a good proxy. If you don't have that you need some other method for requarding exploration and clever play if you want to encourage same in your players.


My my my, we just loooove to hear ourselves don't we?
Rare magic items is the reward for exploration in our campaign. Who doesn't want to find all the Easter eggs in the dungeon?