The compilation of One Page Dungeon Contest Entries has been available for a while, now. Excellent! Quick recap: we each nominated about twenty entries to get started. I’ve written previously about the entries I nominated myself.    Time for the last set!
Secret of the Old City by Simon Bull: This was the winning entry! Ogres, thieves, guards, kids, sewers. It’s a refreshing take on sewers. None of that standard waterway criss-cross at right angles. This is a messy urban area. Many buildings provide access to the sewers. If the there’s an official building above, there will be guards on their sewer shift. I nominated this entry for the “Sewers” category. If there’s a ruined building above, maybe the cellar is used as a meeting point for the local thieves guild. And where does the water go? Eventually it’ll end up flowing into a sink hole leading to the next level. All of this was so compelling and seemed so plausible, such an ideal mini-campaign starting area, I immediately wanted to start my next game using it.
It had foes (monsters), potential allies (thieves or guards, depending on your outlook), missions (resc uing the kids), treasure (provide one of the players with a map), and foes (monsters), a nice and unconventional map, and it was well-written. Loved it. A well deserved winner!
(Does Simon Bull have a blog entry I could link to?)
The Sea Goddess Tower by Steve Polasky: I filed this one under “Short”. The simplest towers often work as linear dungeons. This is one such tower. On the other hand, this entry allows players to bypass levels. The interesting design element was that there are connections between the denizens. There’s an item at the beginning of the adventure that is needed elsewhere. Taking the item will cause another group to investigate. Trying to figure out where they came from will lead to a concealed area. There’s an evil looking dude that’s honestly asking for help. He’s also afraid from another group.
Thus, it was short and simple as far as the map goes, but complexity is introduced by setting up conflicting interests between the various denizens of the dungeon. I liked that.
(Does Steve Polasky have a blog entry I could link to?)
The Ancient Academy by Stuart Robertson: I suggested this entry for the category “Traditional”. The map is clean and simple. It has enemies and allies within the dungeon, spiders, goblins, dwarves (always nice), cultists, undead, and green slime – whee! Too bad there wasn’t as much interconnection between the various factions.
The Ominous Portent of the Highlands Meteor by Tim Hensley: It’s rare these days to find science fiction elements in a fantasy adventure. That endeared it to me. I nominated it for the “Aliens” category. What’s not to love about flying saucers? This discovery could be fun if you don’t make it too obvious in the introduction. I was intrigued.
(Does Tim Hensley have a blog entry I could link to?)
What Now? I’ve created a little file for a bunch of One Page Dungeon Contest entries. I’ll take them to conventions and use them for old school one shots together with the empty maps by Tim Hartin. This is excellent material.
Do you know of any similar attempts at discussing the various 1PDC entries?
If not, all I can say is: What about 1PDC 2010!? I’ll do it again. I’ll even run it – without prizes and without any fancy PDF compilation. It’ll be super simple – and full of excellent adventures, one would hope.