Tuesday, April 24, 2012
Dungeons & Treasure in the Ironlands
I hate big, bog-standard demon-filled dungeons. I get tired of old Egyptiany tombs, although its what I normally create because I'm an egypt nerd. I want my Ironlands dungeons to both have a reason to have lots of treasure and magic items, not have to create too many fallen empires, and fit my dark ages feel.
Thus I have decided Ironlands dungeons (beside actual, treasure-less dungeons of castles and keeps) are the cave or tumulus dwellings of the cthonic pagan gods like elementals, dragons, and faerie kings. The magic items and gold are made by the gods to reward their followers, and spells are inscribed on the walls and on stones for the same reasons. Followers or dwellers like dwarves or faeries might refashion or request items from the dwellers below. Magic items can also be found through blessings of the God of Law after virtuous and pious deeds are committed, but the strange and bizarre items like rings of power, transmogrifying idols, and vials of strange liquids are much more likely to come from old gods. This way I don't have to traffic in a magic item economy, deal with an unseemly number of wizard craftsmen, or presume the mighty relics of ancient empires will always be unplundered.
Sometimes of course there will be an old liche or wizard who has a tower or tomb worth plundering, but these can remain the small fortresses and labrotories they should be. Pagans will often worship at the surface entrances of these sites, so beware that as well.