Dungeon Master Tips in 140 characters or so #19

This week I thought I would throw my hat into the ring on the whole dungeons suck topic that Sarah Darkmagic started over on her blog. Don’t hate her just because she hates dungeons and thinks they all should be burned like an orphanage, she is actually really cool once you get past her dungeon bias.

Since putting my thoughts on the subject into print would really just be an exercise in pure comedy and tragedy I thought I would let the DMs on twitter speak for them selves.

Question #1: Define “Dungeon” for me please.

Rolling20s: A semi-linear set of linked spaces wherein one finds monsters to fight, traps to avoid and treasure to loot.

dreadgazeebo: a locale for an adventure peppered with various types of encounters, traps, monster and more. Not nescessarily a literal dungeon

mmaranda: I do that here: http://bit.ly/cfN1RK

Celestian_GC: dungeons != Wilderness

coffeelove: been a while since i was a dm but: flowchart of ‘recommended’ choices for the players. aka stuff that dm is prepared for. pretty sure i stole that from something i read recently.

nosferatu1208: A place once inhabited by mysterious, and forgotten colonies

pdunwin: hostile underground environment.

b_s_lynn: A windowless set of rooms or caverns linked by hallways or tunnels.

Onolin: A dungeon is simply a place where adventure happens, challenges are overcome and enemies are slain.

wshoffner: An underground repository of XP and loot!

psychopez: Dungeon: Where my one player wants the succubus NPC to take their PC for, I quote, “A different type of role playing”.

rdonoghue: constrained environment with threaded sequential encounters.

ExaltedDarkness: I’m casting my vote for “any area where encounters and adventures commonly take place.”

theprint: My interpretation of “Dungeon”: the general term for any “indoor” setting in

deadorcs: What is a dungeon? A dungeon is any set of encounter areas that @SarahDarkmagic is dead set on destroying. #SARAHFRIEND

SarahDarkmagic: Tracy SMASH!!!!! 😛

SaveVsFail: Place that may or may not include a Dragon + shiny bits

CaptCalamitous: A place of magic, mystery, danger, victory, defeat, joy & despair.

newbiedm: A flowchart with choices for the players, and a tool for the DM to keep the players’ choices limited.

AmpTheBard: Dungeon: A seemingly arbitrary collection of corridors and rooms, usually underground unless exceptionally well made, can resemble an apartment complex wher inhabitants are attacked & killed without anyone reacting

mercutio531: Dungeon: A pre-mapped layout for players to explore, deal with encounters, and get to a usually defined ending.

RCarlton87: Any setting that concentrates the action of an encounter or adventure into a limited space. I think Fortified Subterranean Home is the currently PC term.

theweem: It’s basically a cell- So I don’t use “dungeon”, I use den, or lair, or caves.. sewers, tunnels, etc, whatever it really is.

AlioTheFool: My dungeon is a series of connected rooms w/monsters.

JesterOC: A “Classic” Dungeon Adventure is location based where the individual elements do not interact with each other

Question #2: How often do you use a “dungeon” in your adventures?

sajflorida: All the time. It’s not called Wilderness and Dragons!

James_Plunket: Rarely; my players aren’t dungeon crawlers. When I do it’s always a small complex, to be finished in 1 session

Macadosche: About half the time, but I think of the term loosely: above-ground temples, wizard towers, mines, etc qualify as dungeons imho

geekken: A good chunk of adventures.

pdunwin:Most of my adventures involve something dungeon-esque. Too few dragons, though.

SlyFlourish: I probably use dungeons about 2/3 the time mixed in with some overland and other encounters.

AmazingTriangle: I mainly use outdoor areas, along with a combination of ruined buildings and a sprinkling of underground adventures.

ObsidianCrane:  at least 1 ‘dungeon’ every 2 levels. But my dungeons are mostly skill challenges &/or description. Only 2-4 encounters usually.

8encounters: I run mostly wilderness and city adventures (in heroic teir now) planning a trip to underdark by the time they hit lvl 11

DeusInnomen: Dungeons are but one tool in a DM’s toolbox. They have their purpose, but not every job (story) will require it. Variety is key.

Question #3: Are you for or against Dungeons?

SlyFlourish: for.

mmaranda: I’m for it as both a DM and a player.

impworks: Nothing wrong with a good dungeon once in awhile – so long as you’re not incarcerated in it 😉

dreadgazeebo: *Doing my best Mitch Hedberg impression* “I’M FOR EM'”

Onolin: If you are against dungeons, there is plenty of RP games you can play not called Dungeons and Dragons

AlioTheFool: 100% for.

WolfSamurai: I’m for them. I think that, if done right, they’re fun and interesting and add to the experience.

ObsidianCrane: I’m for what I think are good dungeons & against what I think are bad dungeons. Isn’t everyone?

pdunwin: I am against exploration for its own sake & other boring “adventures.”

TrickyTaco: I love dungeons for a “classical” feeling. It’s nice to go back to basics every now and again

valthonis: I am for them, but they’re just one tool in a DM’s adventure toolbox. Like any tool, they can be misused /w suboptimal results.

mercutio531: As both a player and a DM. Though I dont want Dungeon 24/7.

stjimmyster: “dungeon” a generic plot devices used when stuck for time. Least that’s the way I go. When I have time, there’s a sky.

felyn: First time I played D&D, it was 1/2 dungeon, 1/2 everything else adventure. I liked that mix. 100% dungeon would likely bore me.


Part idiot. Part old man. All geek. Thadeous can't think of anything interesting about him self right now. Know this though if he could it would be creative and funny as well as thought provoking.


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Thadeous can't think of anything interesting about him self right now. Know this though if he could it would be creative and funny as well as thought provoking.
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