Some possible rules for the 12 Kinds of Dark
None of these darks will be found within what are commonly known as dungeons. (Except Dankscratch, a weak dark.) Darkness there is simply an absence of light. Only when players pass into the Underdark will they encounter these living darkness’s.
No dark can entirely disobey its own rules. It must hide those in its deeps and flee the light. But, on its margins, around the candles furthest reach, Darks make some choices on what they show or hide. If things have different relative visibility it comes into question mainly if the situation u a judgment. If a fleeing slave crouches next to a dropped coin at the end of a 40ft room, and the lamp has a 30ft range, but is inside the room, can thy be seen? Stippledark will expose the coin, Houndark will expose the slave.
Some darks have more extreme effects.
Dankscratch (Dungeon Dark)
- Likes exposing things in an over dramatic way, leaps away from exciting things and tends to expose rooms in one go.
- Hides behind door and corners, leaves the room illuminated but hides the corridor till the last moment.
- Flickers wildly by ten feet or more, more than the flame that casts it, even when that flame is still.
- Small precise things can be easily found, larger things, like monsters, may not.
- Always exactly the stated distance from the light, no more, no less. Never flickers.
- Magic looks petty passing through. Wild displays do not impress or shock morale.
- Socially aware, those who speak well become more visible.
- The face of someone you are speaking to is almost always visible.
- Interested in clothing and accessories, you can see what others are wearing or carrying.
- Retreats and follows faster when you move. Direction of your travel has radius increased by ten, dark follows 10’ closer behind you.
- Loves depth and volume, retreats in fragments to expose great drops and vaults of stone.
- Loves beauty, Those with high CHA are seen first, and more easily., works of art visible at a distance.
- Creeps closer when not observed, tendrils of shadow get to within a few feet of light without constant checking.
- Confuses size of things. PC may not be told if if small and near or large and far.
- Hides stolen or illegal things well, clings to them.
- The Beauty of Death, those dying, poisoned, downed or bleeding out, gain ‘Charm’ in its shade.
- Illusions designed to increase beauty slowly ebb away in it (Duration halved)
- Frauds are twice as easy to detect.
-Blurs its boundary, PC may not be told exactly where the light begins and ends.
- Reduces apparent distances, DM may subtract ¼ from estimations if they wish.
- Hides identities and distant shapes, even those illuminated may be unclear.
- Shows distance. Exact lengths easily estimated by anyone.
- Silent. All move as thieves within it.
- Always followed by something worse. They next Dark will be from below it on this list.
- Advances and retreats only 1ft per second before the light, slower than a falling man.
- Hides the hunter and exposes the prey. Those who flee almost shine.
- Won’t hide the dead. Bodies and the undead crudely obvious.
- Light radius can vary by up to 50% every round.
- Shadows writhe, never staying in one place for more than d2 rounds.
- Black Flame, accidental fires give out no light for the first 30 seconds, dropped flames tend to find fuel.
- Always alone and still, this dark stays in place, it cannot be commanded or removed.
- Damage and HP levels on all sides are clear to all.
- Saves vs Death always fail.
- Exposes size, weight and power.
- Divine or Diabolic magic and planar gating only within pools of light. Never in the dark itself.
- Light pushes back its boundary but nothing can be seen beyond. Nothing. Ever, by any means.
- Retainers and slaves test morale to travel through. PC’s test Rapture on light loss.