16 minutes ago
Sunday, April 15, 2012
Make Them Choose How They Die
Cabin in the Woods is a really good film--though perhaps not so much as a horror film as a meditation on horror films and their audience. Anyway, go see it, and then we’ll talk. What I’m going to do instead of review the movie is suggest some ways it could influence a dungeoncrawl sort of game.
Though I’m not going to spoil specific film events directly, I’ll reveal some plot points indirectly, so if you want your viewing experience to be pristine, beware:
Related to the "Theseus vs. the Minotaur" setup of Hunger Games, what if the adventures aren’t gladiators but just sacrifices? Sacrifices that have the means to fight back of course, but not intended by the Powers That Be to survive. Unlike Minos's labyrinth, where the monster is the same (and there’s only one of them), the Powers let the monsters and window-dressing (dungeon-dressing?) get chosen by character choice.
There's a room full of artifacts--items--most of them magical, though not in the useful sort of way, probably. The characters chose one (though they probably don’t know the real choice they’re making)--and that choice sets up the theme of the dungeon.
Of course, all the different themes and all the different monsters exist there, somewhere, ready to go when called upon. The PC’s might well discover these other options in the course of the campaign, including perhaps the “storage area” for all the monsters.
It’s a setup with a lot of possibilities. A megadungeon more like the titular Cube that the traditional linear layers--and with a overall malign purpose for player’s to uncover. If they survive.