Tuesday, 2 February 2016

Planning the B1 inspired dungeon

I recently talked a bit about what I liked and disliked about B1: In search of the Unknown. What you'll find below is the first steps in planning how I am going to put those observations to use in my home campaign.

What to keep?

So there are some element of B1, which are cool and I want to keep.

  • A 'dungeon' made to serve the desires of two masters.
  • Disappeared owners, with sections of the site being put to new uses by new inhabitants.
  • Some nice descriptions
  • Emergent narrative
  • The existence of a Museum in the dungeon

The context for delving into the Caverns of  Quasqueton will be connected with plot line 2 of my campaign, in which the PCs are offered several lines of employment by different agents of a vampire, who has decided to use them to establish a lair in the Caverns.

New background
The Caverns of  Quasqueton the fortress home of a pair Champions of Chaos, Rogahn the fearless and Zelligar the Unknown, who before the coming of Duke Karameikos, trouble the lands around Luln. No one has heard of from them in a long time, and many believe them dead, however their fate is unknown to the world at large.

The truth is, that in the months directly after Duke Karameikos took charge of the nation, Rogahn and Zelligar had a falling out, and killed one another along with almost all of their servant, in a minor war within the caverns.

This conflict was driven by many thing, including a philosophical difference in how to deal with the arrival of Duke Steffan.

Haunting as narrative device
A lot happened in the caverns during the fight, through out the complex there are a series of hauntings which convey aspects of events that transpired in the caverns, as the champions of chaos.

Cutting up the map
I am going to be using +Dyson Logos map of "The Deep Halls" which I have numbered up, and shown of below.

It is not a small map, and so I have cut it up into areas of use, which can be found below. These groups of rooms describe the use of these areas while Rogahn and Zelligar still ruled here. They will also represent rough changes  in adventure theme, and monster territory in the complex. For instance the underworks and caves are home to a group of troglodytes.

1- 3: Entry Halls
This area grants entrances to numerous areas of Cavern of Quasqueton. There are a number of traps here.

4 - 19: The lair of the wizard
There rooms were at one time the public face of Zelligar domain within the Caverns. It is here that he would meet his guests and entertain them. It was from here that his private secretary oversaw the running of the fortress, and that many of his less precious books found their home.
Traps, magical and physical, strange magical phenomena and construct guardians

20 - 25 guard post
This was the barracks for the guards who ensured the entrance to the cavern remained secure.
Home to a small tribe of goblins, who are in conflict with the Troglodytes, in the underworks.

26-38 servants area
This is one of the caverns many below stairs sections, including store rooms, kitchens and staff quarters.
During the battle, this area remained became a charnel house when the serving staff sided with Rogahn enmass. Zelligar punished their treachery unleashing a pair of ghouls on them. This area is now infested with a small number of the fearsome undead.

39-66 guest wing
A selection of plush rooms and appartments used to house allies and guest to the Caverns in the time of   Rogahn the fearless and Zelligar the Unknown.
A Medusa Seer has taken up residence in this section of the complex, and she has fortified it with magic traps and wards.

67 - 85 The Barracks
This was the primary barracks for Rogahn's elite cohort of warriors.
When Rogahn's  warriors died in the fighting, some of the orcs who had served Rogahn claimed their barracks as a lair. These orcs consider  Rogahn to be a god.

86 - 102 fungal garden 
Zelligar cultivated a mycological and zoological  garden here, making a preserve he could wander in to think and relax.
Many strange fungi and giant insects

103 - 115 building site
Rogahn was unsatisfied with his primary holdings at the overlook being so far from the heart of the complex, and so,
In the last years before the arrival of duke steffan, he started to build a new set of appartments and servants quarters near to the barracks. This area houses the tunnel to the overlook.
A group of outcasts from the orcs in the barracks dwell here, they occationally fight with their former comrades, but largely spend their time worshipping Zelligar, and a number of them have become minor wizards..

116 - 135: Museum 
A repository of strange items and memorabilia of  Rogahn  and Zelligar's adventures and conquests.
Danger: ALL THE TRAPS, but significant rewards for penetrating it.

136 - 141: the Curator's abode
This area was built as the home of the curatr of the museum. Bound by unbreakable oaths of loyalty to both Rogalm and Zelligar, the curator was driven mad by the conflict between them. He lives here still, a husk of a man, grown powerful in magic but lots to sanity.
Dangers:  The curator and his servants.

142 - 175: underworks and caves

It was here that many strange magical and mechanical functions necessary to ensure the smooth running of the fortress were undertaken.
This area is now home to a clan of troglodytes

So what next?
So, with some idea of the lay out of the outermost areas of the complex, I am going to need to start digging down into each location and populating them with monsters, traps, and haunting phenomena. I'll be starting with the entrances and halls.

A big old P.S.
If you enjoy this, go and support Dyson's Patreon. His ability to put stuff into the CCs is instrumental in projects like this happening.


  1. Great analysis of a complicated map you've got there. Love the way you've blocked out sections based on the backstory for the dungeon.