Friday, 14 December 2012

The Room of Many Gravities

Ever needed just one more interesting room in a dungeon?  Ever wished that combat was just a little more... twisty?  Do you simply hate static gravity?  Then have I got a room for you, friend DM. Have I got a room, for you.

Now I realize that by posting something as comprehensive as an entire trapped room here I more or less annihilate any chance of using it on any given group of my friends.  Because they probably read this blog.  To keep up with the new and exciting ways I plan on destroying their carefully crafted characters. 

However, I've already used this once so nana-nana boo-boo, go suck an egg.  I got my fix.  And now I plan to share my dastardly invention with the DM's of the world!  BWAHAHAHA!  TPK's all around! That said the objective of a DM should never be to get a TPK.  However coming close is always a joy.

The idea of this room is simple, really.  When you look at the inside of any given room, you're looking at the inside of a cube. The wonderful thing about cubes is that they have all these sides.  Sides that, if you cock your head, look remarkably like floors. What would happen if, say, gravity suddenly changed to a random direction?  Walls become floors, ceilings become hurtling deathtraps, and your party turns into a delightful little pile in a corner.

In my game I set up a simple eight by eight dungeon tile as the room, and then used some two by eight tiles to represent the walls, and a second eight by eight to symbolize the roof.  One of the most entertaining parts of the evening was watching the players try to figure out what the bizzare arrangement of tiles represented. 

Artists Rendering.
Also located in the room were some deadly deadly orcs, because who doesn't love orcs, a control panel, and a seemingly innocous pair of boots.  When combat begins, the orc engages the control panel (with an axe, natch), and then the real fun begins. 

Once a round, roll a d6.  That number corresponds to which surface is now "the floor".  The party, the orcs, and any loose objects tumble dramatically to the new floor, taking fall damage as required.  The boots, however, stay wherever they are.  A fun little gimmick a good perception check will get your players.  Also, at least one enemy should be wearing a similar pair of boots and remain unaffected by the shift.  Watching your players desperatly climb up what was once the wall so they can reach a deadly adversary who's standing straight out sideways is a fun image, and gives them a clue as to the function of the boots. 

I won't give you any DC's as to how to disable the trap because this one can be used from early heroic all the way up to mid paragon, and DC's tend to change a fair bit between those.  However, if you plan on running it in low heroic, I suggest you come up with some ways to deal with the occasionally massive fall damage, or at least warn your players.  Making characters able to catch oncoming friends to share damage, or perhaps letting characters that land on opponents be allowed to shift some of the damage they would take on to enemies are some fun thoughts.  Let me know if you come up with any others!

In any case, have fun, don't kill your players, and stay frosty my friends.  

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