Tuesday, August 2, 2022

d100 - Instigative Scenery & Interactive Décor

Sometimes when I’m stocking a Dungeon room or Indoor Encounter Area, I like to woolgather a bit about what might make an Encounter that takes place in this area more interesting or exciting. My rooms are seldom swept-bare or sparse affairs, but I’ve found it incredibly productive to sprinkle in some more proactive and even downright tempting descriptions into my set dressing from time to time. The way I see it, Adventurers are canny/competent folks and would always have an eye out for any kind of advantage they could eke out of the mise en scène, so to help get those ingenious juices flowing, I’ll sometimes embellish props with little hints like this. Just a suspicious soupçon here and there is sometimes all it takes to get that mindset established, and then the players end up embracing the frangibility in the fiction and start striving to exploit their surroundings.

These casual clues can sometimes make for much more dynamic and unpredictable combats but be fully forewarned that some Referee Rulings might be necessary to adjudicate these. When in doubt, I tend to clarify the actions the players are taking and ask questions about their goals and intensions to close any gaps, but sometimes a little bit of random chance can make a cunning plan or novel approach that much more exciting and engaging. Repurposing an X-in-6 or Reaction Roll can always work in a pinch, but even if it fails, the players have altered the environment in some significant way generally, and that can further inform the situation in intriguing ways.

Naturally, this sort of thing could be considered fair game for foes as well, but as with any potential Hazard or Trap, I find they tend to work a bit better when adequately telegraphed rather than sprung on the utterly unsuspecting. Sometimes this even leads to a race to see which side gets to avail themselves of the fight-shifting feature first.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Search

Labels

random tables (239) d100 (238) tables (161) encounters (138) OSE Encounters (133) OSE (132) magic items (23) equipment (19) dnd (17) dungeons (17) wilderness tier (17) character generation (15) monsters (14) spells (14) magic (13) wilderness (13) rumors (12) generators (11) house rules (11) gear (10) hex crawls (10) hexes (10) spell features (10) BECMI (9) clerics (9) RC hacks and house rules (8) ideas (8) NPCs (7) advancement (7) dnd hacks (7) magic users (6) names (6) characters (5) cities (5) classes (5) dressing (5) plants (5) resources (5) set dressing (5) treasure (5) yoon-suin (5) animals (4) backgrounds (4) character sheets (4) current campaign (4) curses (4) dragons (4) mountains (4) reviews (4) settlements (4) shrines (4) team tuesday (4) 4e (3) TROIKA! (3) WHITEHACK (3) adventure hooks (3) character classes (3) clues (3) dm (3) dolmenwood (3) events (3) foraging (3) fourth edition (3) goblin project (3) hooks (3) landmarks (3) magical items (3) mentzer (3) potions (3) rules cyclopedia (3) spellbooks (3) transcripts (3) traps (3) treasures (3) villages (3) why tables (3) world building (3) Cairn (2) Dwarfs (2) Elfs (2) ability scores (2) abstract combat (2) adventures (2) armor (2) backstories (2) books (2) cantrips (2) carousing (2) city crawls (2) community projects (2) d&d (2) doors (2) dungeon stocking (2) experience (2) food (2) forests (2) fungi (2) furniture (2) gods (2) gorgon trail (2) harry clarke (2) hazard system (2) herbs (2) hex crawling (2) hex-describe (2) hirelings (2) identification (2) identifying (2) jewelry (2) locks (2) magic systems (2) magic-users (2) magical research (2) mushrooms (2) projects (2) quests (2) reagents (2) religion (2) rooms (2) saving throws (2) scrolls (2) skills (2) tex-crawl (2) toadstools (2) tools (2) traits (2) weapons (2) 20 minute dungeons (1) 5e (1) DR (1) GLOG (1) KtA (1) OSR (1) PCs (1) VEINS (1) abilities (1) adventure seeds (1) alcohol (1) arduin (1) backpacks (1) bags (1) bards (1) birds (1) blessings (1) bookshelves (1) boots (1) bounties (1) bows (1) breath weapons (1) buildings (1) campaign starters (1) camping (1) candace (1) cards (1) cartography (1) cloaks (1) clothing (1) cold iron (1) complications (1) containers (1) corridors (1) cosmology (1) couplets (1) crowdsourcing (1) d12 (1) d66 (1) deities (1) dimensions (1) discoveries (1) diseases (1) dogs (1) donkeys (1) downloads (1) downtime (1) drinks (1) encumbrance (1) energy drain (1) fair folk (1) fairy tales (1) familiars (1) fey (1) fish (1) fishing (1) flaws (1) foibles (1) followers (1) foodways (1) foreground growth (1) fountains (1) future campaigns (1) game jams (1) garlic (1) garments (1) gary gygax (1) gauntlets (1) gloves (1) grimoires (1) habits (1) hacks (1) hallways (1) hats (1) helmets (1) hexagons (1) hints (1) horses (1) how tables (1) in medias res (1) ingredients (1) initiative (1) itch.io (1) keys (1) knacks (1) lairs (1) lore (1) magic research (1) magic words (1) mapping (1) maps (1) meetings (1) memes (1) mentors (1) miens (1) miniatures (1) mishaps (1) modern (1) monster motivations (1) motivations (1) mules (1) mutations (1) new spells (1) obituaries (1) omens (1) overland travel (1) overloaded encounter die (1) percepts (1) perchance (1) perdition (1) pets (1) pits (1) places (1) planes (1) player characters (1) poisons (1) pools (1) portals (1) pouches (1) procedures (1) process (1) protection scrolls (1) purses (1) puzzles (1) reaction rolls (1) religions (1) reputation (1) rests (1) rewards (1) rings (1) rituals (1) roads (1) robes (1) rolemaster (1) ropes (1) ruminations (1) seafood (1) secret doors (1) session starters (1) shields (1) shoes (1) shopping (1) smells (1) software (1) song tables (1) songs (1) sounds (1) special attacks (1) specials (1) spell casting (1) spoor (1) springs (1) staffs (1) statues (1) stocking (1) stories (1) streets (1) subsystems (1) surprise (1) swords (1) table talk (1) task resolution (1) tells (1) terrain (1) the middle road (1) thief (1) thieves (1) tieflings (1) timekeeping (1) tinkering (1) tomes (1) traces (1) tracks (1) trees (1) turn undead (1) urban crawls (1) venoms (1) vignettes (1) voronoi (1) wands (1) waterskins (1) weather (1) where tables (1) wizards (1) xp (1) ynn (1)

Blog Archive