2012-06-10 Best Of 1PDC 2012


When I had finished reading through all the submissions for the One Page Dungeon Contest 2012, I had a list of dungeons I was considering for nominations. We had agreed on twenty nominations but here I was with nearly thirty dungeons and adventures I liked!

The following are short commentaries on the entries I liked. Note that I printed all the entries using a black and white printer. If any of the maps are colorful, I probably missed it.

Also, I’d love to read your take on individual entries you want to recommend. What did you like about them? What is worth imitating in our own games?

warning: Spoilers ahead! :-D

The following list was written for referees that are staring at the pile of over one hundred submissions and wondering where to start. If you only have the time to look at a handful of dungeons, check out the stars.

A final note: Given all of the above, I often felt that a simple way to get more of my attention (I don’t know how the other judges felt) is to have descriptive labels on the map itself so that I don’t have to read the key all the time and to use bold to highlight the important parts of each room so that I can easily skim it (monsters, treasure, anything that’s in your face and easy to spot when players enter the room). I also like my dungeons to have multiple entrances or exits and to provide for more goals, use interesting magic items (simply having an interesting magic item that can be removed by the party would result in two points)… That kind of thing. It’s not easy to balance this with the time and space constraints, I know. My own dungeons wouldn’t score too well using my own system.



Thanks, Alex.

My thinking behind the Crown is that this is a dungeon for a West Marches sort of sandbox. They romp around through the dungeon for a while, need to go up north to find the king’s bones, and have general hijinks. Many levels later, they come on back in and get the final treasure. It’s certainly not a “let’s finish every room in the next four sessions” sort of thing.

Hope to hear someday of how it works out in your campaign.

Roger Carbol 2012-06-12 20:21 UTC

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