Friday, March 5, 2010

I won not beautiful gold, nor so-so silver but shameful bronze

Well the results of the one page design-a-dungeon-room contest are out and my little entry came in third. Listed below is the might bronze medalist:

"I hope you brought a towel"
Note: All items, creatures and spells are from the 'Swords and Wizardry' Core Rules

Description: The first thing players will notice when they pull open the stuck, ice cold and airtight bronze door is an awful lot of water. The room is forty feet by forty feet, with ceilings twelve feet high and full to the brim of water. Unlocking the door will cause it to swing open, striking anyone in its path for 2d6 damage. The the water will flood out and roll the adventurers back for some distance. Assuming they are still alive and have a source of light (and are not lost in random corners of a dark dungeon without anything that isn't soaked to make a new torch with), they would then be able to survey the room.
The four corners of the room each contain a large statue of Atlas, holding up the ceiling. To the far wall, are two large stone statues of the thinker. Originally the waterlogged desk and waterlogged corpse of a wizard would have been between them, with his staff leaned against the wall and a decanter of endless water left open on the floor. There would have been an airtight sealed iron box within the desk. The desk will sill be in the room, probably sprawled off center and partially broken if the door is open, but the other contents (the staff, corpse and decanter) could be anywhere the water would take them. The statues are, as no doubt already surmised, stone golems. One of the thinkers would always grab the desk to keep it from leaving the room.

If anyone enters the room, the two thinkers will move forward to attack and kill them before sealing the door (and bend it shut permanently). If a thinker slips below 25% health, it will switch places with one of the Atlas statues (who will likewise also switch out if injured). There must be four golems holding up the ceiling, if there is a missing golem for more than 3 rounds the ceiling will collapse and bury everything within the room under tonnes of rubble. If the players are able to get past the attacking golems and attack one of the golems holding up the ceiling with an appropriate weapon unmolested, they can perform a "coup de grace" and destroy it. One of the active and attacking golems will immediatly break off the fight to hold up the ceiling. Thus distracting the "active" golems to crush the golems holding up the ceiling will quickly win the fight, unless the characters get greedy and kill too many. The wizard's staff was his insurance policy against golem related issues, and is a staff +1, +4 versus golems. He passed away while drinking from his decanter of endless water, causing the flooding. In his desk inside of a sealed iron box is a manual of stone golems and his grimoire; it contains the spells "stone to flesh", "Enchant Item", "Hold Portal" and "Magic Mouth". The key to the box was on a string around the wizard's neck, and if his body washed away with the water, could be anywhere. If the box is hacked open (ie, not using the key or lock picking) or shaken badly, the brittle pages of the manual of stone golems have a 4/6 chance of being broken into useless pieces.


  1. Side note: The title is a simpson's reference as I received an email saying that bronze isn't bad and I should be happy.

    Re: Norman Harman,

    I am quite proud of it myself, I like the concept that it has a purpose, a combat that can be out thought and a 'key' to every puzzle if the players care to check, allowing a low level party to potentially gain some high level treasure.

  2. Well congrats on the Bronze. No shame for not winning. Just if you hadn't me. I had my room done and never sent it in.