Tuesday, 19 February 2013

Eight more caves

Eight more caves


Drop 2d6 vertical feet onto an island in a shore-less stream.

Water laps the island rim. There is no bank or beach but only walls. Upstream the river rises in rapids or waterfalls. Downstream it dives beneath the touching stone. An arrow scratched, and the flow of air, gives direction. The sump is d4 minutes long with d4 air pockets. The island is a balancing boulder.


A wide flat cave curved like letters C or J. A floor of sand.

The river is a trickle. The dunes in sweeps and fans are damp and waist-high. The cave will flood violently in d20+5 minutes and stay flooded for d20 minutes. The cycle repeats. You leave wet crunching tracks. So does anything else. Bodies and lost items washed away might rest here for a while.


The water shows the way under the stone.

To pass, dive and blackly search. Standard sump is d4 minutes long with d4 air pockets. It will feel longer. Fear will kill you. You will exit in blackness, wrap up a candle or a lamp for passage. Scratches and signs may tell the way and time.


A space so vast it can't be seen.

Light disappears without return. You fingertip-trace one wall and follow it round. This takes 4d4 hours. Crossing takes 1/3 that. Whenever players understand it's size, by echo delay, or trying to cross, Save vs Paralysis. Attackers retreat in the dark. Giga-boulder maze and a wide sandy centre-space.


Like a randomised semi-organic Luxor.

Calcite columns so close only one can pass at a time. You climb through long ellipses shaped like sleepy eyes. Echo's scatter and light gets trapped fast. Use dropped coins or dice to map.


Imagine a jar of marbles with an ant climbing through.

You are the ant. Vast breakdown pile filling a shaft. House-sized irregular rocks, car-sized gaps. Drafts or trailing smoke may lead the way. You can drop down without climbing checks. Passage gaps in every downward direction. Half have no way past.


A cluster of vast defensible stalagmites in the centre of an open cave

The cave is an irregular doughnut. Around 13 giant centre-columns clustered close together can be got amongst and climbed. You can leap from top to flattened top. There is something good up there. 10% chance of a prison built in the centre column space.


A rappel shaped like thick liquid being poured from a curved glass.

That image is the shape of the empty space. A curving lip, a drop straight down. Wide first, then narrowing. In the middle a descender can pause and 'chimney', back flat on one side and feet out on the other. Then slowly widening again.. Fallers will hit the funnel and grab. Jumpers may survive.

And two re-writes in the hope of greater clarity.


A path down through stone of shallow pools linked by streams.

A narrow staircase in the rock. The 'steps' are 3d4 pools you can jump between. 4 to 6 vertical feet. Swim/wade across. Anyone fighting can grapple and throw themselves down into the next pool as a free action, SO LONG AS THEY TAKE THE OTHER GUY WITH THEM.


A smooth, saxaphone-shaped chamber. Valved, wet, regularly refills.

Flowing and shaped like the inside of a wind instrument lying flat. Many tiny exits. Puddles and pools. Living fish flap. Will refill, violently and unstoppably every d30 minutes, them empty again. forever.

1 comment:

  1. Awesome! Interestingly I've never seen any good pictures of the Sarawak chamber - I think it's too big to properly illuminate. Somehow that seems fitting, that such a wonder remain mysterious.

    Sumps are fucking scary. Cave divers have got to be some of the more ballsy individuals the world has produced. Magic light would help a lot in those situations. I can't imagine how unpleasant it would be to encounter something large and hostile in the sump.