In a game where everyone uses magic, magic becomes the cornerstone of design. This is one of the big areas that makes Mage: the Ascension different from Sorcerer from a Harry Potter RPG.
Last month, I wrote about how you might design and run deathtrap dungeons using the Dungeon World roleplaying game. To aid GMs further, I’ve created several custom moves based on some of the most iconic and infamous traps lurking in the Tomb of Horrors. Use them as they appear in your own adventures, or modify them to create custom moves for traps of your own devising.
I’ve written before about my love of Mage: the Ascension. I even went and hacked another game system to play it in a way I really enjoyed, and have run it that way multiple times now. I’m not the only one who wanted to bring Mage back with a modern system. Ryan Macklin also wrote up the hack he was playing with. Now we’re joining forces on it.
In Part 1, I started sharing a summary of my 13th Age campaign. In this post, I’ll catch up to current events and tell you a bit more about my players and table dynamics. If you’ve been reading my recent 13th Age posts, you should know that the next chapter is what inspired me to write the 13th Age hack about dealing with PC vs NPC contests.
Our 13th Age campaign is blossoming into one of the most amazing, highly improvised RPG campaigns I’ve ever played. So much so that I consider it one of the high points of my GMing career. I decided it was a good time to share some of its highlights and show you how we made the 13th Age Dragon Empire our own.
In this part of the series, I’ll talk about how to create monsters, traps, and puzzles for your deathtrap dungeons in a way that embraces Dungeon World’s mechanics and philosophy. In addition, I’ll explain why hard moves are the most important part of your deathtrap dungeon toolkit, and present a list of 20 hard moves you can use in your game tonight.
In this 3-part article series, I’ll share some of my tips for running deathtrap dungeons using the Dungeon World roleplaying game. By drawing on the lessons of my recent deathtrap dungeon campaign, Black Plume Mountain, and by using my conversion of the Tomb of Horrors as a guide, I hope to give you the tools to design and run exciting, dynamic, and brutal delves.