Dungeon Generator Comparison: WHAA

Posted: 1 May 2010 in Reviews
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I’m still feeling unwell, so another random dungeon. For this second example, I’m using the generator from Warrior Heroes: Armies and Adventures by Two Hour Wargames.

As before, I won’t delve into the detail of individual die rolls. I will note that the WHAA rules only use d6, and that the first step is to select an army list for the dungeon’s defenders, as the largest base width (“W”) drives all the measurements. This means that opponents with larger creatures automatically make larger dungeon passages and chambers. For no very good reason, I select a Demonic Cult as the opposition, and decide that a Major Demon is the largest thing we’re likely to meet, and that it is on a base 2″ across. That means “W”, the basic unit of measure for corridors and rooms, will be 2″ – represented on the floor plan as two squares. Chamber areas will be measured in units of “W”; I’m uncertain how to play this but decide that if “W” is 2″, an area of “W” is 2″ x 2″.

I also need to know the points value for the intruding adventurers. I shall assume a party of four, each with a CV of 2, which seems about right for beginning PCs. As I’m only generating a dungeon, not running the fights etc, I won’t need any more than this. As I’m just testing the generator, I will ignore the rules about sentries and raising the alarm; one side effect of this decision is that only three rooms will have encounters, and thus only three will have loot and booty, since in WHAA dungeons you can only check for this after clearing an occupied room. However, I’m mostly interested in the dungeon map for this run, so that’s acceptable. A side effect of not rolling activation is that there are no wandering monsters either.

The map below is what resulted, rendered in Dungeon Crafter 1.41 as usual; this time I started a little in from the edge so that the map isn’t trimmed! One square represents one inch, which for THW games is about two scale yards. Doors are unlocked unless otherwise mentioned; north is at the top of the map.

Example dungeon generated using Warrior Heroes: Armies and Adventures

Key:

  1. Level 5 trap, and PEF (Possible Enemy Force) #1. This resolves as one cultist and a petty demon. The Loot & Booty table tells me that this room has considerable treasure, granting an extra increase roll for SS, and that the target of any raid we might have been mounting is found.
  2. PEF #2, which again resolves as one cultist and a petty demon. Loot & Booty is a potentially magic weapon, which would need to be resolved outside the dungeon. The east and south doors are locked; opening the west door triggers a Rep 4 trap.
  3. PEF #3, which resolves as five cultists and a major demon. No special loot; if I were running this as a session I would have some items of interest, including at least one clue or hook to a later adventure.
  4. A large chamber. The west door is locked, but opens onto a short corridor ending in a secret door into the corridor between chambers 1 and 2. The east door is also locked, and opens onto a flight of stairs heading down to the second level, which since the stairs are 7″ (14 yards) long looks like it is about 40′ below this one. I decide to limit myself to one level for this test run, so I ignore what might be at the bottom.
  5. Both exit doors are locked.
  6. This was a passage 11″ long by the die rolls, which then turned 90 degrees left. I turned it into another chamber because it would have run off the map. Had this occurred further from the edge, I would have shifted it a little to the right and considered it to be running over the top of the descending staircase.
  7. A locked door, leading to another passageway running off the page. My normal approach to these is to say that the roof has collapsed, and the way ahead is blocked by rubble.
  8. The east and south doors are locked. The south door opens onto stairs down to level 2.
  9. This passageway ends in a secret door to the east.
  10. An empty chamber, slightly too large because my mouse slipped, but who cares?
  11. These stairs lead up a level, so they must go to the surface. Either the entrance is at some lower level, therefore, or there must be stairs or something similar leading down to it.
  12. An empty chamber. The east door is locked, the south door isn’t.
  13. Empty chamber. All chambers are empty now as I have run out of PEFs and am not using Sentries. Both doors are locked.
  14. Chamber.
  15. Chamber.
  16. Chamber. This should have been bigger with more exits, but I’ve run out of room on the map.
  17. Chamber. Both doors are locked.
  18. This passage has run into another one, so it stops and ends in a secret door visible from this side.

Overall, I’m pleased with this map. As so often with THW products, the rules are deceptively simple; I looked at the couple of pages devoted to lair construction and thought they would create very simple and boring dungeons, but I’m pleasantly surprised. Clearly I will need to use the Sentry rules to ensure more monsters and treasure, though.

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