Wednesday, September 11, 2013

MythicGME and a Five Room Dungeon Adventure

For awhile now, i've been mulling over how to use MythicGME for a scene based dungeon adventure. The idea was in part inspired by marketing tactics of several games that claim a new school approach with an old school feel. 

In my mind, new school means, at least in part, scenes, not the gritty details of exploration (and probably a lack of resource management as a game mechanism), and the supremacy of the narrative over individual desires e.g. being willing to do something with your character that is to their detriment, but makes the story that much cooler. 

For some time, I could not wrap my head around how to do this with a dungeon crawl. 

I have no doubt it's because I really enjoy crawls, dungeon or otherwise (stating the obvious to regular readers of my blatherings). Why would you NOT want to encounter empty rooms, map your progress and track how many torches you have left?

But, at the same time, it seemed like a scene based dungeon could be fun - a different kind of narrative, especially given the nature of MythicGME.  This would not be a replacement to my usual approach, per The Ever Expanding Dungeon, but rather, something more likely for one-offs.

Still, I could not figure out how I would approach it. For one, I had to let go of the idea that it'd be a crawl in any traditional sense and accept that the map would probably abstract if one existed at all, and the overall approach more cinematic. 

And then, the other day it hit me, borrow the 5-Room Dungeon structure, using MythicGME to fill in the details. Like the 9Q's from SoloNexus, the 5-Room Dungeon provides a structure upon which you can hang ideas that result from randomizers, like Rory's Storycubes or the Subject and Action lists in Mythic.

Excited, I sat down to play on Monday night; I quickly learned that there's a caveat when using MythicGME. 

Mythic being Mythic means that it's possible, like my first attempt, that you can  setup a scene but it might not happen that way (you roll to check to see if there's an interrupt or an altered scene). As you'll see when I post that effort, this completely undermined my intent, although I enjoyed the end results none the less.

If anything, it shows how with Mythic, you can't even railroad yourself!

The mistake I think I made is that my first scene was not yet inside the dungeon. So, I followed that up with a slightly modified approach where I put the party into the dungeon in the first scene. The results were much more in line with what I thought would happen, at least in terms of the structure of the session - content, as always, was news to me based on my interaction with the randomizers.. 

I'll post the session summary of the first attempt tomorrow, as it's basically written, and follow with the 2nd attempt soon after.


  1. I still need to look into the solo dungeon creation. I'm very curious about it.

    1. Hi Tim,
      I'm working on a guide to playing RPGs solo, to make it easier for people to take the plunge. probably won't be out for a few months though.

    2. I'll be first in line to grab a copy. Great to hear.

  2. Very interesting. I'm not sure what has held me back from running a dungeon crawl. I'll take a look at this.