Dungeon advise?

MerlinCross

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Kinda having some trouble in designing some of my later dungeons. Trying to keep them basic but at the same time more than just "run back and forth for keys" as that's a bit annoying to players. More so if a previous dungeon did that.

1 Dungeon is the basement/hidden section under a resteruant. It has a central hub connecting 3 different rooms. Currently the idea is to go beat up on the mini bosses for their keys to get to the main boss. But I'm unsure as to what obstacles to put in the way of the players. I thought about having NPCs in the area reward you with different foods that lets you get past guards or weaken them but that might be too annoying to run from room to room after you got the food in question.

The other dungeon idea I have is the back rooms of a casino which is more maze like with little puzzles. But unsure as what to throw in there to spice things up.

Unsure if this is the right spot for ideas/theory crafting.
 

ShadowDragon

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obstacles can be many ways, switch puzzles, statue puzzle, broken path that
can be revealed on a word or clues around the room for a hidden switch 1 or 2.

creating a bridge that colapse, or dont stay because of weight (different object
have different waight (aka crate, rock, person)) etc.
 

Dororo

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Start from there, the Five Room Model, to devise efficient dungeons - mind anyway that you should fill up the dungeons with void rooms/more corridors as the playing time is quicker on computer RPG.
In your case, each miniboss area should be a single dungeon.


Look at links on the bottom of the article for usefull indepths.
 

AfroKat

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Room 1: the key holder can be hungry so you have to listen to what food he likes then head to the kitchen and tell the head chef what he wants. Get it wrong and he summons goons to attack. Get it right he gives you his key.

Room 2: you don't know who the key holder is in the group of people there. All you have is a general description. As around looking for the guy, if you get it wrong twice he runs out the room and you have to redo it but now he's in a different outfit

Room 3: he might need help with heating up food. Fight a battle only using fire/cold spells until it gets to the right temp (HP), then once done it explodes/he eats it and barfs up the key.

Room 4: is a series of rooms where the dude left the key in his room by a drawer, go find it. Once you do he shows up and you fight.

Room 5: key holder deals in black market fruit, pretend to be a salesperson until you see the key, then finish the sale or fight him for it.
 

BENI_MARU

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Is there something you can draw from the narrative that would inform the mechanics? Beyond the puzzles and encounters, I really enjoy running into bits of lore (whether through books, or implied through the scene).
 

Black Pagan

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Kinda having some trouble in designing some of my later dungeons. Trying to keep them basic but at the same time more than just "run back and forth for keys" as that's a bit annoying to players. More so if a previous dungeon did that.

1 Dungeon is the basement/hidden section under a resteruant. It has a central hub connecting 3 different rooms. Currently the idea is to go beat up on the mini bosses for their keys to get to the main boss. But I'm unsure as to what obstacles to put in the way of the players. I thought about having NPCs in the area reward you with different foods that lets you get past guards or weaken them but that might be too annoying to run from room to room after you got the food in question.

The other dungeon idea I have is the back rooms of a casino which is more maze like with little puzzles. But unsure as what to throw in there to spice things up.

Unsure if this is the right spot for ideas/theory crafting.
Here are things that I can tell you that apply to most Dungeons generally :

- Dungeons don't normally have many NPC, So think twice before adding too many NPC or even a single NPC

- You would want to build a Dungeon around a Common theme. So think about the Theme of the Dungeon.

Ex : A Beginning Dungeon in my game - A Warehouse dungeon is empty, No Mobs, No Traps. Why ? Because its meant to be an abandoned Warehouse where Player simply visits and Gathers items !!! Does it make it weird ? Perhaps, But it fits with theme and that is all that matters.. So think of everything from the perspective of Story and Theme.

I would suggest an Appealing theme for your Dungeon instead of calling it simply "A Basement". Go for a Casino. Maybe you could use Vending Machines to give the Player items and do away with NPCs ? You could add Flashy Lights, Perhaps some kind of Comical / Joker / Playful enemies to match the Casino vibe ?
 
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MerlinCross

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Here are things that I can tell you that apply to most Dungeons generally :

- Dungeons don't normally have many NPC, So think twice before adding too many NPC or even a single NPC

- You would want to build a Dungeon around a Common theme. So think about the Theme of the Dungeon.

Ex : A Beginning Dungeon in my game - A Warehouse dungeon is empty, No Mobs, No Traps. Why ? Because its meant to be an abandoned Warehouse where Player simply visits and Gathers items !!! Does it make it weird ? Perhaps, But it fits with theme and that is all that matters.. So think of everything from the perspective of Story and Theme.

I would suggest an Appealing theme for your Dungeon instead of calling it simply "A Basement". Go for a Casino. Maybe you could use Vending Machines to give the Player items and do away with NPCs ? You could add Flashy Lights, Perhaps some kind of Comical / Joker / Playful enemies to match the Casino vibe ?
I do have or at least trying to keep with a certain theme of each dungeon.

For example the second dungeon players go to; it's the kitchen dungeon. They go their because members of the cooking club have gone missing and they find the students+more people being worked to cook a large obsence amount of food, to the point some of it is actually going bad.

Players can interact with some of the NPCs to get items that might help bribe the guards or get past traps. Or they can just run head first in and brute force some of the fights. It has a very 'industral' look to it, almost like a food processing plant than a kitchen. And the enemies are either sentient globs of food, or overly sized gapping maws of teeth.

Dungeon 4 as set up is a reflection of the manager's vanity so everything's clean, well kept, shinny and entirely rigged for him to win in his Casino. The enemies are 'shining' examples to himself.

I do like some of the ideas you provided though. The dungeons are 'complete' in the sense you can get to the dungeon, run through, and beat it; but there's so much work to be done to make it feel more like some dungeon or dangerous area than just empty hallways.

This might be something I need to play test MORE than theory craft. And by that I mean get others to play it and see what they say.
 

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