Friday, August 30, 2019

Accolades from the Dungeon Terrier: Hack & Slash

When I wrote the mysterious Quest for the Dungeon Terrier, I leaned on the resources, tricks, and techniques of my fellow OSR geeks. One of my favorite OSR luminaries is Courtney C of Hack & Slash.

Oh man, Hack and Slash is how I found the OSR, I think. One of my favorite blogging DMs, Courtney's content is top notch and has deeply influenced how I run games.

When writing dungeons, I'm always consulting reference works for inspiration and to help me work my way through sticky problems. Courtney has published two critical reference works for dungeon design:

Tricks, Empty Rooms, and Basic Trap Design
This vital work describes a practical methodology for dungeon design taken from the ODND DMG, then builds tables and categories of rooms, curiosities, and hazards. I love this book for the tables of rooms alone. I wish the hazards got a bit more airtime, but what is there is a great jumping off point, and getting too far into traps gets into the whole 'skill subsystem' issue.

Now published as part of Blog Compendium II, Treasure almost completely solves the boring loot problem. As a bit of a 'Monty Haul' DM, I love treasure and seeing the players figure it out. I don't think I've given the players a single +1 sword or bag of unnamed gemstones since getting this book.

Finally, Courtney is writing something new! As I write this, he is at 20x his funding goal on a Kickstarter campaign for his next work: On Downtime and DemesnesI'm backed, the work is promising to be great, and I can't wait to see Courney's future success!

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