"I’m fond of quoting a section from Spawning Grounds of the Crab-Men, a room that has an old retired hill giant named Old Bay. He’ll pay for dead crabs and his cave smells of butter. "
I want to see this in print so baaaaad.These are my suggestions, but I give them with the caveats that I can't make these alterations myself to see how they look. Alternate the color of table entries by row, rather than by the checkerboard pattern.Do something to emphasize the titles of the entries (like "SQUEEZE" and "BLOCKAGE") besides just capitalizing them.Use a serif font for the description text.The monster encounter column looks odd, because there is so little text in the top row of all the other cells. Maybe center the monster names vertically and horizontally. Increasing the font size could maybe help, as well. It also might be a good idea to include the page number of the monster's stat block.
Bah! I forgot to mention. Think about play with the way you align the numbers. The Chicago Manual of Style would most definitely approve of the way you aligned them along the ones place, but it might might might look better aligned another way. It seems like the tables in Vornheim just have the numbers centered.This is going to be an awesome book.
I think the way you wrote this it might be better as just a series of alphabetized entries to be browsed than as tables.Tables need to be short and useful at a glance-what you've made is series of evocative vignettes more akin to Monster Manual entries than tables.IF you want tables, I'd number these descriptions and then put the tables (with entry or page references) elsewhere
Maybe disassociate the cave type from the encounter? Like, different columns. They you could read across the line with one roll or mix and match with two (yeah, you could do that anyways, but right now you have to hunt for the different data types within the text).Also what Zak said. Keywords in the table, full descriptions elsewhere. As is, this is a bit too much text for a table, but not quite enough for a more detailed description (at least for me).
i agree with above. give us a keyword, let us reference it. you've mentioned before the idea of an idea that gets in your head, like a brain-worm from the author. put faith in the fact that the audience will "get it". list the descriptions first; let us get brainwormed. when we have the idea, then, throw us the keyword via chart. if we forget, make it easy to look up. i really want you to print this book soon.