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Dungeons as source of lost technology
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Harshax
Journeyman


Joined: 05 Sep 2014
Posts: 133
Location: Chicago, USA

PostPosted: Fri Jul 28, 2017 4:31 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

There's an interesting story hook: Come to our rural resort-dungeon town to save us from the monsters within. After an adventurer in possession of a powerful artifact foolishly died in our dungeon, we find our defenses under siege from a creature who has unified the denizens in escaping our priso... dungeon and wrecking havoc on the locals.
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hyzmarca
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Joined: 14 Mar 2011
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PostPosted: Fri Jul 28, 2017 5:23 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

The one thing you don't want to see on the walls of a dungeon you're raiding:

This place is a message and part of a system of messages pay attention to it!

Sending this message was important to us. We considered ourselves to be a powerful culture.

Inside you find the dungeon guarded by grotesque creatures, their bodies covered in weeping sores, who wield knives made from a dull silvery metal that burns and leaves festering wounds that won't heal.

As you make your way deeper into the tomb, you find casks full of water that you use to quench your thirst while you rest. The area seems to be taboo to the creatures, and they refuse to follow you.
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Mord
Master


Joined: 24 Apr 2014
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PostPosted: Sat Jul 29, 2017 12:29 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

hyzmarca wrote:
The one thing you don't want to see on the walls of a dungeon you're raiding:

This place is a message and part of a system of messages pay attention to it!

Sending this message was important to us. We considered ourselves to be a powerful culture.

Inside you find the dungeon guarded by grotesque creatures, their bodies covered in weeping sores, who wield knives made from a dull silvery metal that burns and leaves festering wounds that won't heal.

As you make your way deeper into the tomb, you find casks full of water that you use to quench your thirst while you rest. The area seems to be taboo to the creatures, and they refuse to follow you.


Shocked

I once pulled a similar con on some players of mine with a dull silvery dragon that breathed pulses of weird bluish heat...
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Hicks
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Joined: 27 Jul 2008
Posts: 1117
Location: Blytheville, AR

PostPosted: Sat Jul 29, 2017 1:14 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

1e expidition to the barrier peaks was explicitly a crashed space ship, filled with "magic" wands and wonders. Technology indistinguishable from magic anyway. Kinda makes you wonder if detect magic dosen't detect magical radiation but actual ionizing radiation.
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Judging__Eagle
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Joined: 07 Mar 2008
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PostPosted: Tue Aug 01, 2017 5:10 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

It should be noted that this is one of the explanations for why dungeons are sometimes considered core conceits from OD&D (specifically the physics-defying technology to create a world-piercing dungeon. In a Dungeon article Gygax claimed that he once led Rob "Robilar" Kuntz through Castle Greyhawk's dungeons such that he exited the other side of the planet when he hit "bottom". It should also be noted, that while it is a (sort of) one-shot meant for Convention use, Expedition to Barrier Peaks is both a heavy injection of soft-SF elements; and its creation by Gary Gygax sets precedent for such material being officially accepted by the franchise.

As well, this conceit is maintained in 3e (if not, at least in 3.5) in terms of its room and door types. The closest to outside floors will be simple wood, but once you're on a "level 10(+)" floor, the majority of doors are sliding, or iris portals.

Which heavily indicates some degree of "buried advanced civilization" or "artificially created multiverse" vibe that has never been clearly translated in the players rules; but has been repeatedly hinted or blatantly explained in sections or D&D literature that is generally aimed at "DMs".
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Guts
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Joined: 07 Aug 2017
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 14, 2017 5:24 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

I think Numenera is like this too. Though I don't have much familiarity with it.
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Harshax
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Joined: 05 Sep 2014
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 14, 2017 10:47 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

Judging__Eagle wrote:

Which heavily indicates some degree of "buried advanced civilization" or "artificially created multiverse" vibe that has never been clearly translated in the players rules; but has been repeatedly hinted or blatantly explained in sections or D&D literature that is generally aimed at "DMs".


It's interesting to note that Expedition to the Barrier Peaks was James Ward's invention for Metamorphis Alpha and even the original LBBs mention robots, androids and automata in the same sentence used to refer to Golems. I really don't think D&D originally tried to skin everything fantasy as something mythically magic and what you ascribed to mysterious forces or advanced technology was just left up to a consensual theme in your group. There was more than one occasion in my groups where one player's conception of an effect didn't gel with the rest of the group's imagination. One time I described a Dart of the Hornet(?); a magic projectile that multiplies in-flight to strike a target multiple times; as similar to the the swarming missile salvos seen in the Robotech cartoon. This elicited boos from fellow players and the DM alike and they asked that I try to stay themetically in the realm of ye olde bullish-shyte when describing my own actions or they I would be asked to leave.

People still get bent out of shape over this shit, even though it doesn't make any fucking difference in the rules. Magic or science fiction is nonsense unless you're running immersive fiction.
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Occluded Sun
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 14, 2017 11:08 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

Might and Magic is a computer game series, but sort of D&Desque... and if memory serves, M&M 6 involves a struggle against aliens and a crashed spaceship.
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hyzmarca
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Joined: 14 Mar 2011
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 14, 2017 11:27 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

Expedition to Barrier peaks had opne of the bost impractical looking science-fiction guns.



The buttons on the shoulder select the fire mode. The button on the handle fires it. The ray comes out of the window on top of the shoulder I'm still not sure how it's supposed to aim.
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Harshax
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PostPosted: Tue Aug 15, 2017 12:06 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

It features an arm-loopy thing for stability instead of a frame that runs down the length of your spine and anchors in the your anus.
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deaddmwalking
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Joined: 21 May 2012
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PostPosted: Tue Aug 15, 2017 11:11 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

Occluded Sun wrote:
Might and Magic is a computer game series, but sort of D&Desque... and if memory serves, M&M 6 involves a struggle against aliens and a crashed spaceship.


This conversation is only on page 2...


deaddmwalking wrote:
Stahlseele wrote:
right, i still remember the sudden disconnect when playing Might and Magic 6 i think and suddenly you stumble into a spaceship and fight insectoid aliens.


Ah, but if you had played Might & Magic (the Original: Secret of the Inner Sanctum) you would not have been surprised. There was a crashed alien ship in the desert and their escaped prisoner was posing as the King. I really only played the first one, but I believe in the second one you definitively learn that the world of Varn exists on a space ship and you follow the legendary explorer Corak to a second space ship.
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OgreBattle
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Joined: 03 Sep 2011
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PostPosted: Tue Aug 15, 2017 12:01 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

Harshax wrote:

One time I described a Dart of the Hornet(?); a magic projectile that multiplies in-flight to strike a target multiple times; as similar to the the swarming missile salvos seen in the Robotech cartoon. This elicited boos from fellow players and the DM alike and they asked that I try to stay themetically in the realm of ye olde bullish-shyte when describing my own actions or they I would be asked to leave.


I'm sure somewhere in the Vedas there's an Itano Circus


Last edited by OgreBattle on Tue Aug 15, 2017 12:02 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Harshax
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PostPosted: Tue Aug 15, 2017 12:54 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

OgreBattle wrote:
Harshax wrote:

One time I described a Dart of the Hornet(?); a magic projectile that multiplies in-flight to strike a target multiple times; as similar to the the swarming missile salvos seen in the Robotech cartoon. This elicited boos from fellow players and the DM alike and they asked that I try to stay themetically in the realm of ye olde bullish-shyte when describing my own actions or they I would be asked to leave.


I'm sure somewhere in the Vedas there's an Itano Circus


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BzXfVgYCxWI
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Thaluikhain
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Joined: 29 Sep 2016
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PostPosted: Tue Aug 15, 2017 2:39 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

hyzmarca wrote:
Expedition to Barrier peaks had opne of the bost impractical looking science-fiction guns.

The buttons on the shoulder select the fire mode. The button on the handle fires it. The ray comes out of the window on top of the shoulder I'm still not sure how it's supposed to aim.


It's like the Predator's plasma gun crossed with a selfie stick.
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OgreBattle
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Joined: 03 Sep 2011
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PostPosted: Sun Aug 20, 2017 8:09 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

what are some interesting treasures to seek out that aren't just better weapons and armor?

Things that come to mind...
-source of energy (not infinite so gotta keep looking)
-source of life extension (spiiice!)
-weapon of mass destruction
-cache of 'true history'
-communications device, scrying device
-blueprints for magitek stuff
-cure for disease and stuff
-source of food, clean water, purifier
-lift a curse on something
- high monetary value like gold
- raw materials like super-iron


Last edited by OgreBattle on Sun Aug 20, 2017 8:15 pm; edited 1 time in total
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tussock
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Joined: 07 Nov 2009
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 21, 2017 3:28 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

  • Treasure maps.
  • Captured NPCs, who have other problems to solve.
  • A guide to reaching any of various inaccessible places.
  • A name.
  • A question.
  • Blue key, Red key, Yellow key, only interesting because good fluff.
  • Strictly speaking, a McGuffin, adventure being what happens along the way.

    But mostly whatever provides some sort of big fat clue toward further adventure, so also various problems can combine with more mundane treasures to bring some interest.

    Just don't forget to also give out the weapons and armour.
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    Lokathor
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    Joined: 01 Nov 2009
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    PostPosted: Mon Aug 21, 2017 3:33 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

    drones and robots that you can bring back to animate. Maybe they just need power, maybe they need to be put back together somehow.
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    Stahlseele
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    PostPosted: Tue Aug 22, 2017 12:17 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

    Depending on how far back/advanced you are:
    a technical renissance. Levers. Wheels. Magnetism.
    Electricity? Advanced Smithing? Gunpowder/Chemistry?
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