Traps and Dungeon Lairs

The core book list some example traps level 1-3, and says more deadlier dungeons should have deadlier traps. Yes.

I serached but to no avail, are there any guidelines in making/scaling deadlier traps?

Of course, make deadlier traps have better attack bonuses and do more damage, activate spells (I have three PDFs on different types traps), but I'm not quite sure how I should scale the attack and damage, and at what dungeon levels I should bump them up. For example, a pit is easy enough, i.e., add 10'/level (as is noted in the core).

I'm sure the answer I'm looking for is simple enough, but I'm not much of a "Math-guy," nor do I fully understand the math of the system well enough (albeit, given my limited Math skills, I think this game rocks when it comes to the Math- for the most part, so far).

What I'm really asking is a Math question.

My second question is a bit more problematic:

Our group loves doing graph paper, random dungeons, dungeon crawl, sandbox-style- create as we go. And everything is well and good so far (in theory, at least). But what is stumping me a bit, is to how to handle lairs in such a paradigm? I love the core idea of distributing the monsters of a lair throughout the dungeon, but, we'll be rolling for lair% as we go (unless someone has a better idea). Our issue is not worrying about rolling too many lairs, for we can nix such rolls if they don't mesh. But we do like the idea of possibly coming across a lair (or two), but we don't want them all in the same room, because often that's dumb, depending.

   So I was just wondering some tips and pointers in handling lairs when doing a randomly generated dungeon crawl as we go. As well as any other pointers and tips we can incorporate in such a paradigm that stays truest to the RAW (we very much like the vast majority of how the RAW works, for once in our life!).

Thanks a lot. It's greatly appreciated.

Awesome game (I can't wait for Lairs).

10'/level is secretly also your damage/level recommendation, since every 10' = 1d6 damage.  now, obivously traps can be slightly more deadly since you could have spikes at the bottom, but generally a trap on the 2nd level should reasonably be twice as deadly as on the 1st level, but only 1/3rd as deadly as a trap on the 6th level, at least as far as damage is concerned.


I don't have a good RAW answer, but for me, I had a group of players who weren't as big on empty room descriptions and exploration as a more old-school group, so I allowed my dungeons to be a bit more crowded.  I did this by filling a dungeon map out according to RAW, but when I rolled an "in-lair" i would divide it out across multiple rooms, thus slightly increasing the percentage of rooms that are full of monsters.


Of course, I was doing this with a dungeon map already filled out.  I think the intent of RAW is that when you roll a result for a lair, the next X rooms  you draw are part of the lair until you run out of beasties.


Yes, well put some of the lair creatures in the empty rooms we roll.

Well, there's (at least) two ways to do it. 

Say you're filling a dungeon with 10 rooms.  If your first roll indicates a lair with 5 gangs, you could fill the first 5 rooms, and then roll rooms 6-10 normally.  Alternatively, you could roll rooms 2-9 normally, and replace empty entries with monsters.  the 2nd method gives you the highest monster concentration by far.  

Alternatively, you could go in the other direction and replace monster rolls with some of the gangs of the lair.  It really depends on how good you are at making empty rooms which add to the tension and excitement of exploration which direction you want to go in.

One way to do trap/trap damage might be to tie it to a monster HD. ACKS pg 243 has a random wandering monster level determination, with that you can generate the "level" of the trap, then reference an average monster of that HD (or Lairs & Encounters will give you really good guidance on that!) and sally forth.


Lairs: Some of the information on how this can be handled is held in the Sanctums and Dungeons rules for mages (pg 141,142). To whit:

[quote="ACKS pg 142"] When 1/3 of the areas in the dungeon have monsters lairing within them, the dungeon becomes full. [/quote]

which could mean given 1000 sq ft of dungeon rooms, once 333 sq ft are en-laired, it's "full" - and the other 666 sq ft are left over for buffer space, storage, fungus farms, random wandering, guards, whatever. A conversation going on elsewhere on the board makes me think that maybe 33 sq ft per man-sized creature is a nice uncomfortable monstery living space - so for each man-sized monster in a generated lair, they want about 100 sq ft of actual dungeon space to spread out in.

Not knowing what you're doing to generate the dungeon, but, if a lair is generated, generate 100*(# Monsters) more dungeon square footage to hold the lair, and there you go.



You could also just put 5 gangs into one very large room, and then roll for the next 9 rooms as normal. If you're a monster.

Why square feet? I would imply "rooms" by the usage of "areas," as I suspect the latter was used because lots of dungeons wouldn't have clean, square rooms like a bunch of boxes on graph paper. I think that 1/3rd is just a holdover from the random dungeon generation process.

Personally, I only make those random rolls for populating a dungeon in advance. While one could do it on the fly, it's hard enough to come up with something good while doing it in advance. Doing it in real time creates issues (as the OP has discovered), and misses opportunities for the interesting connections, twists, and complications that can be developed with a small amount of reflection on what the random numbers actually mean. At the very least, I'd recommend rolling randomly for the whole dungeon at the start (via Excel, Inspiration Pad Pro, or similar), so you can at least fit the pieces together while knowing what they are. I use an Excel sheet so that, if absolutely necessary, I can do it for a dungeon on the fly (I was going to post it here once upon a time, but it's such a kludgy mess I couldn't bring myself to do it).

Another alternative, assuming the OP wishes to stick with on-the-fly generation, would be to use an approach similar to Dynamic Lairs: build a number of dungeon "rooms" (really just flexible encounter keys) that can be dropped in as needed. This could include multiset lairs.

I also assumed the intent was to count rooms and not square feet, but to each their own.

I also agree about not being big on rolling randomly as it happens.  There's a bit of massaging that can happen after you've populated all the rooms that makes it feel a bit more meaningful.

... I also have an excel sheet (well, google spreadsheet) but it did random numbers poorly so I've only used it as a bare minimum to get me going.