Monday, July 01, 2013

Know thy dungeon

Modern day combat units have something our brave adventurers lack : intelligence. I don't mean the magic user's intelligence, I mean enemy intelligence.

Units will drill and drill and drill. Our brave adventurers journey totally into the unknown. Why do we seldom sell the maps we draw to other brave adventurers? Why don't we buy maps from others? Is there a dungeon crawl intelligence gathering processes in your campaign? Gathering some info at the bar or maybe the local clerics, who heal the injured and raise the dead. Surely from the recent dungeon excursions.

As I ponder on the game mechanics for my game and look into the concept of coolness under fire as a means to determine initiative, my thoughts converge on training. Training is an important factor in the success of a mission, knowing what each member of the team is responsible for, where they stand and what lays ahead is crucial for a quick victory. Yet dungeon crawlers seldom train. Is that because it's not a needed skill or because the mechanics provide no benefit?

The more I think about it the more I'm convinced an initiative system based on combat coolness is better than a random roll. That such system should be adjusted for training, team cohesion, command and the current situation. I seldom see this in dungeon crawls. Do you make use of ways to look ahead and gain intelligence of what's awaiting your party? or do you just storm in hoping for the best?

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