Recommend a Dungeon Crawl

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Ronnie Sanford

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Hi all,

Recently my group, who has been playing CoC for a while, asked to run a dungeon crawl using Magic World rules. Our last dungeon crawl was In Search of the Troll Slayer which was a big hit. The problem is that I don't know of any other modules (for any system) that meet our needs. Can you guys recommend something? What we / I like:
  • Not too big of a module. No more than 40 pages or so.
  • No epic sorcery like you find in typical Dungeons & Dragons games. I would really like to escape globes of invulnerability and fireballs...
  • A rational dungeon. There should be good reasons for any monster to be in there and monster's shouldn't respawn.
  • Intelligent monsters / enemies that can be fought or reasoned with.
  • Bad guys that have goals and timelines. If the players don't act the monsters will.
  • No reliance on Elves, Dwarves and Halflings tropes. I can handle those things being in the game but my players will want to be human.
  • Perhaps a sword and sorcery feel.
I realize they are probably hundreds of modules like this for D&D but I haven't been able to identify them.
 

TheophilusCarter

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If this were a D&D module, you'd be looking for fairly low-level, yes? Lemme take a look through the usual suspects and get back to you soon.
 

TheophilusCarter

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Oh, here's a couple right off the bat. If you check out my mini-reviews of Goodman Games' Fifth Edition Fantasy modules, and look at the ones for modules #7 and #10, they might fit the bill. They are a bit higher level, but I think easily scaled, especially because there's a fair amount of room for stealth, negotiation, etc., rather than just brute force.
 

Ronnie Sanford

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Yeah its 2nd Edition D&D terms I would imagine 5th or 6th level. BTW Magic World uses BRP rules same as Call of Cthulhu and a decendant of RuneQuest.
 

Moracai

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Out of Runequest dungeons my favorite is Snakepipe Hollow. It has much chaos creatures and things going on so it might not be the right fit for you. Out of D&D modules King's Festival and Queen's Harvest are among my favorites. They are not entirely within dungeon setting though.
 

Ronnie Sanford

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Out of Runequest dungeons my favorite is Snakepipe Hollow. It has much chaos creatures and things going on so it might not be the right fit for you. Out of D&D modules King's Festival and Queen's Harvest are among my favorites. They are not entirely within dungeon setting though.
I am checking these out but Snakepip Hollow already sounds interesting. At 66 pages its a bit long though but maybe thats a good thing.
 

Mankcam

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There's a D&D OSR indie fanzine called 'Dungeons On Demand' that you could check out.
Each issue has a few dungeoncrawls. Although its OD&D/ 5E compatible, you could convert that on the fly to BRP/MW.
I saw them on DrivethruRPG, but haven't bought any to be able to recommend.
However they may be worth a look: http://www.drivethrurpg.com/browse....0_0_0_0_0&x=0&y=0&author=&artist=&pfrom=&pto=

I was thinking of grabbing a few of these for some fun beer n pretzels games, and running either D20 Sharp Swords & Sinister Spells or BRP Magic World. They might do the trick.

However I might do that with the Goodman Games DCC scenarios as well, but they will definately be pretty deadly in MW terms: http://www.drivethrurpg.com/browse....0_0_0_0_0&x=0&y=0&author=&artist=&pfrom=&pto=
 
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Voros

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Hi all,

Recently my group, who has been playing CoC for a while, asked to run a dungeon crawl using Magic World rules. Our last dungeon crawl was In Search of the Troll Slayer which was a big hit. The problem is that I don't know of any other modules (for any system) that meet our needs. Can you guys recommend something? What we / I like:
  • Not too big of a module. No more than 40 pages or so.
  • No epic sorcery like you find in typical Dungeons & Dragons games. I would really like to escape globes of invulnerability and fireballs...
  • A rational dungeon. There should be good reasons for any monster to be in there and monster's shouldn't respawn.
  • Intelligent monsters / enemies that can be fought or reasoned with.
  • Bad guys that have goals and timelines. If the players don't act the monsters will.
  • No reliance on Elves, Dwarves and Halflings tropes. I can handle those things being in the game but my players will want to be human.
  • Perhaps a sword and sorcery feel.
I realize they are probably hundreds of modules like this for D&D but I haven't been able to identify them.

Dungeon of Death is a fine 2e dungeoncrawl that doesn't get enough attention. The Lost City by Moldvay or Dwellers of the Forbidden City by Cook are also excellent.
 

Bunch

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Hi all,

Recently my group, who has been playing CoC for a while, asked to run a dungeon crawl using Magic World rules. Our last dungeon crawl was In Search of the Troll Slayer which was a big hit. The problem is that I don't know of any other modules (for any system) that meet our needs. Can you guys recommend something? What we / I like:
  • Not too big of a module. No more than 40 pages or so.
  • No epic sorcery like you find in typical Dungeons & Dragons games. I would really like to escape globes of invulnerability and fireballs...
  • A rational dungeon. There should be good reasons for any monster to be in there and monster's shouldn't respawn.
  • Intelligent monsters / enemies that can be fought or reasoned with.
  • Bad guys that have goals and timelines. If the players don't act the monsters will.
  • No reliance on Elves, Dwarves and Halflings tropes. I can handle those things being in the game but my players will want to be human.
  • Perhaps a sword and sorcery feel.
I realize they are probably hundreds of modules like this for D&D but I haven't been able to identify them.
Well other than your request for bad guys with a timeline I'd almost recommend s3 expedition to the barrier peaks. It's mostly coherent it just has no real goal.
 

Ronnie Sanford

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So lets expand this a bit. Can you provide suggestions for longer modules (maybe up to 90 pages or so) and modules that have a dungeon crawl in them but that aren't pure dungeon crawls. In the interim I orered Snake Pipe Hollow and some of the others mentioned here.
 

Nick J

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You might like the Astonishing Swordsmen & Sorcerer's of Hyperborea adventure modules. I haven't run them yet, only skimmed them, but Ghost Ship of the Desert Dunes, Beneath the Comet, and Charnel Crypt of the Sightless serpent all have a sword & sorcery vibe, with a moderate amount of underworld exploration. I think each module weighs in right around 45 pages. It's stat-ed for AS&SH, which is very close to B/X D&D, but it shouldn't be too hard to mold into Magic World terms. PDFs are on DriveThru/RPGnow. https://www.drivethrurpg.com/browse/pub/4453/North-Wind-Adventures
 

xanther

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The Caverns of Thracia is one of my all time favorites that can meet most of that list IF you run it as you wish. That is, to the extent it is there ignore the fight to the death stuff and realize all the factions are in balance against each other....until the PCs arrive.
 

Ronnie Sanford

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You might like the Astonishing Swordsmen & Sorcerer's of Hyperborea adventure modules. I haven't run them yet, only skimmed them, but Ghost Ship of the Desert Dunes, Beneath the Comet, and Charnel Crypt of the Sightless serpent all have a sword & sorcery vibe, with a moderate amount of underworld exploration. I think each module weighs in right around 45 pages. It's stat-ed for AS&SH, which is very close to B/X D&D, but it shouldn't be too hard to mold into Magic World terms. PDFs are on DriveThru/RPGnow. https://www.drivethrurpg.com/browse/pub/4453/North-Wind-Adventures
Thanks Nick! I will check it out!
 

Ronnie Sanford

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The Caverns of Thracia is one of my all time favorites that can meet most of that list IF you run it as you wish. That is, to the extent it is there ignore the fight to the death stuff and realize all the factions are in balance against each other....until the PCs arrive.
Another person suggested Caverns of Thracia on BRP Central too! I will definitely check it out!
 

xanther

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Another person suggested Caverns of Thracia on BRP Central too! I will definitely check it out!
There's a 3.5 version then of course the original (which was for like D&D 0.5). I like the maps in the 3.5 version but dislike what they did with the Thanotians, and how everything had to be turned up to "11" and went crazy on box text (I rewrite these things to fit them into my world anyway so the trite "politics," "history" and "story" they try to add is useless) I really like the factions Thracians, Thanotians, Goblins, Bugbears, Beastmen, Lizardmen, Minotaurs, etc. (who can each have there own agenda) and the very non-linear dungeon with forgotten areas is nice. I'd set it in a place isolated form the world at large, an island or remote jungle location. It starts to lose a lot of sense if one of the factions (usually the Thracians) has contact with the larger world.

oh the 3.5 version is way past 40 pages.
 

Shemek hiTankolel

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Have you considered making your own? That way you can tailor it to fit your group.
 

Stevethulhu

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Legend of the Five Rings had Tomb of Iuchiban. Which might be hard to do d, but is basically a homage to Tomb of Horrors with an extended introductory scenario..

Season with a nice twist, and a neat section where the inner dungeon is made by drawing tiles and laying them on the map and you get a pretty good dungeon in a system that isn't really made for du from crawls.

As a side note, when did crawl take over from bash as the descriptor of choice for dungeon adventuring?
 

Edgewise

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Tower of the Stargazer is a classic of the genre. Not only is it a great adventure with a terrific creepy weird swords-and-sorcery vibe, but it is really designed as an intro to the genre. There are side notes that explain design choices and make suggestions about how to run certain portions. Check out Bryce's review if you have any doubts. Speaking of which, his list of favorites has many entries that would qualify as answers to this post.
 

Muchacho

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Big Rubble for Runequest only infringes your first point (it's more than 40 pages) but otherwise has everything you ask.
 

Baulderstone

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I'll add to the recommendations for Bryce's reviews at Ten Foot Pole. He really has a grasp on what works in play. For your current purposes, just looking at the list he has called The Best should narrow things down for you. I do find his negative reviews enlightening though.
 

CRKrueger

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I'll add to the recommendations for Bryce's reviews at Ten Foot Pole. He really has a grasp on what works in play. For your current purposes, just looking at the list he has called The Best should narrow things down for you. I do find his negative reviews enlightening though.
The good thing about Bryce is, he's very up front about his biases and minces no words as to why he hates or loves something. As a result, he's kind of like the Pundit (back when Pundit did reviews) in that a negative review might still lead you to buy a product, it's all about the WHY, which Bryce usually gives in fine detail.
 

Ronnie Sanford

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Hi Shemek! I am considering writing my own but it wouldn’t be my first choice. To that end I started another thread about characteristics good dungeon crawls share.
 

Baulderstone

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The good thing about Bryce is, he's very up front about his biases and minces no words as to why he hates or loves something. As a result, he's kind of like the Pundit (back when Pundit did reviews) in that a negative review might still lead you to buy a product, it's all about the WHY, which Bryce usually gives in fine detail.
Yes. I'm not foolish enough to expect a critic to share all my opinion, but I like it when a critic is a good enough writer that I can get know them and get a sense of when I might like something that they don't.
 

Baulderstone

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Hi Shemek! I am considering writing my own but it wouldn’t be my first choice. To that end I started another thread about characteristics good dungeon crawls share.
Even if you want to write your own, it's handy to read some of the classics for ideas, or even to steal from.

The thing to keep in mind is that good dungeons aren't always good reads. A brilliantly arranged dungeon can seem flat on the page, but come to life in surprising ways when you actually run it.
 

Edgewise

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Have you considered making your own?
I've become a big proponent of trying out top tier published adventures. I've definitely learned a lot from doing so. I don't think any GM should completely abandon the practice of using adventures that were written by someone else.

EDIT: Looks like someone beat me to the punch on this one.
 

Raleel

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For shorter ones, THE EIDOLON OF THE APE in the spider gods bride is a dungeon crawl through an ape-god Temple, full of ape-worshiping cultists. I think the only thing it’s missing is an “or else”

TDMs book of quests fits your bill for longer, only it’s quite a lot longer at 226 pages ;) it does have a good timeline though, with a sorcerer trying to bring a chaos god in. You could probably get what you want by taking a few of the scenarios (I would pick reckoning at distaff peak and the chaos Mother’s chalice, then one more, maybe beneath the black water as a lead in) and putting them together. Each one is about 30 pages.
 

Shemek hiTankolel

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Hi Shemek! I am considering writing my own but it wouldn’t be my first choice. To that end I started another thread about characteristics good dungeon crawls share.
I get it. Some times it just makes more sense to go with a pre made dungeon. I just find it easier, and preferable, to go with my own creation. A great resource that I have been leaning on the last couple of years are Dyson's maps. They really make dungeon creation a snap. His Private Jakalla is fantastic and really, in my opinion, captures the feel of Tekumel's underworlds wonderfully.
 
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