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Sorry for the cross post, but I'm polling my patrons and fans to help choose my next big project. How to Host a Dungeon v2 is one of the options. This would mean making HtHaD my main focus for the year. If that interests you, or you're a fan of my work, come fill out the survey and let me know:

I’m having a design conundrum.

Redrafting the primordial age. I want to create more interesting starting worlds for HtHaD.

In the original HtHaD, you rolled dice on the page. The place where a die landed was where you drew something. The number on the die indicated what you drew. This was tactile and straightforward and felt satisfying. But as the game went one, and you added stuff to the page, it became harder to roll the dice without messing things up. Dice rolled off the page and had to be rolled again. The primordial age felt sparse and lacked unity.

Soon, people started creating a sort of a grid by writing numbers down each side of the page and rolling dice to get a coordinate point to generate random locations. After a while, even I switched to this method. It was more practical than rolling dice on the paper. It worked in online-only games. But using a grid feels colder, less tactile, more removed from the page. In a game that’s meant to be very analog and fuzzy, it feels clinical.

In HtHaD V2, I instruct you to divide the page up into regions, called strata, which are analogous to geological regions. Each region has a dominant landform, and later in the game you can roll a random region instead of dropping dice on the page or using a grid. This feels tactile and satisfying again. I’m getting primordial worlds that feel more interesting. But the rules for creating the regions are cumbersome, weird, and don’t always work. I think they’re creating a barrier to playing the game.

So what do you suggest I do?

What the game needs is a way to quickly and elegantly point the action to specific locations on the map.

The procedure should intuitive and straightforward.

The more tactile and analog it is, and the more it points at marks on the page the better.

Any thoughts on this? Do you prefer the old method, the middle, or the new? Should I provide a bunch of examples, or pre-made worlds with regions already defined?

Has anyone tried this out? Several people expressed interest, but I haven't heard much feedback. Did you find it too fiddly? Confusing? Unclear? I'm working on the new draft now, so this is an opportunity to change direction!

Hey everybody, I just wanted to let you know that How to Host a Dungeon v2 is still being worked on. I've put it on the back burner for a while, but I'm adding notes and getting ready to pull it out and create another draft. 

Hello there.  I'm giving this thing a whirl and I have some questions/ comments about the Age of Monsters. 

One:  The rules for the invade action do not appear to be in the list of actions. 

Two:  What do I do with the wandering monsters/monsters left over from the previous age?

Three:  The Age of Monsters says to start with a delver, a breeder and an alpha predator.  However, there are some monsters that do not have any of those designations.  Does that simply mean I can't start with them or were there designations left off the card?

Four:  When placing new monsters in a strata, am I limited to areas already excavated or can they somehow pop in from nowhere and I draw new areas for them?

I am still having great fun with even the playtest rules.  The monster card idea is great!  Hope to hear from you soon.

FYI, just made a minor update, fixed some typos, modified some monsters, and added new artwork.

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I'm super proud of the newest draft of How to Host a Dungeon, which I just uploaded. After wrestling with it for a couple of months, I've finally got a monster age I like.
Monsters are now much easier to run with less churn and a reference card for each monster type. Monster types also feel much more individual and do more interesting things. I'm looking forward to someone trying this out!
Link to the rules is at the top of this community.

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So I have been cooking up new monster "flavor" charts, and I thought I'd post them here.  I'm working on a D&D campaign I am going to run, and using a mash-up of How to Host a Dungeon v1 and v2 to set up the megadungeon.  I absolutely love How to Host a Dungeon, but v1 has some limitations in the monster lists that wanted to tweak to get a result that would look more like something I would want to use in an actual campaign (fewer ants and ant-related monsters, more monsters generally, some switched roles, etc.).  Each list uses a d20 instead of a d12.  You'll notice there are some rough spots and unfinished bits, but since I'm just using this for my campaign, I'm not worried about it here.
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I'd like some help with a playtesting exercise. Instructions are below. I'd very much like it if some of you were willing to participate. Should take you about 10 minutes.

This is a stack sort. It’s a freeform playtesting exercise that will help me flesh out the general boundaries of the monster age. In this exercise I’m looking for a set of attributes that fit under the class “monster” and some sample terms to fill each category.

Post your results here, or email to me at

“Monster” is a general class. Some examples include a tribe of goblins, a dragon, a college of wizards, or a swarm of rats. Monster includes an entire social group, whether it’s one individual or many.

Here are some possible attributes of “Monster”. Pick the ones that you think are useful in defining the class Monster. You can pick all, some, or none. You can make ones up if you think there are any obvious ones missing.
Here’s a list of words that fit under these attributes. Sort these words under the attributes you chose in any way that makes sense to you. An attribute can have one, zero, or many words. You don’t have to use any words you don’t think belong. If you think an obvious word is missing, add it. Feel free to modify your attribute choices while you're sorting.

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started playing the last night using procreate on an ipad, which seems like a pretty great way to play so far. i'm trying to use multiple layers at a time (with previous ages and a grid pushed to the background and lowered in opacity): one to take notes and move my beads, and another to draw, which is great in theory but i keep forgetting to switch and having to erase. this is about a third of the map after my deep elves migrated to the surface; i liked my set-up at this point so much i got distracted by prettifying it with my poor imitation of better map artists. will have more actual thoughts when i finish the game hopefully
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