Saturday, May 26, 2012

Dungeon Design - % Man-types

This is a train of thought inspired by both the descriptions of the Empire of the Petal Throne underworld and my analysis of % of man-type encounters through various editions of D&D.

When making a dungeons consider assigning a % Men value to individual dungeons.

A complex of interconnected cellars beneath a slum used by criminals and outcastes? 90% Men.

The just-unearthed vault of a race of prehuman abominations? 0% Men.

When stocking an inhabited room or determining a random encounter make a check against the % Men value.

D&D dungeons with the monsters Monsters MONSTERS! paradigm is pretty awesome, and makes for a great funhouse, but higher percentages of man-types should allow for more complex and entertaining emergent scenarios as well as emulating a great deal of the source literature.


  1. Excellent idea. I think men are too often overlooked as encounter groups, and it does make the true monsters seem less special when you find them all the time. Another factor to consider is the unknown... when players encounter monsters they most often think they are automatically enemies. When men are encountered it is unknown what their motives will be and must be ascertained through play.

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