Today has been a good day for my love of megadungeons.
First there has been an update on the upcoming publication of the Castle of the Mad Archmage. The Castle is a megadungeon that lives up to the name, stretching over 12 levels in depth. The dungeon is the brainchild of Joseph Bloch who writes The Greyhawk Grognard blog and was originally designed for use with Labyrinth Lord making it easily adaptable to any old school Dungeons & Dragons rules set. Bloch built and released the castle for free through his blog and it became one of the banner projects of the Old School Renaissance. Bloch eventually took down the files so he could renovate the Castle for a professional release using the Adventures Dark & Deep rules. It’s been a long road since then, but now it looks like we’ll be seeing the final product early next year via BRW Games.
I have the original release and it’s a fun read filled with the kind of traps, monsters, and magic we’d hope for from an OSR dungeon. The Castle of the Mad Archmage is a book that should be on the shelf of any dungeon master and I’m looking forward to adding it to mine.
The second event today was the arrival of my copy of Stonehell Dungeon: Down Night-Haunted Halls. This is the first volume of another celebrated OSR megadungeon, covering six levels of a vast underground complex.
Stonehell was created by Michael Curtis, who writes The Society of Torch, Pole, and Rope blog and has released several products for Goodman Games, including The Dungeon Alphabet which has entertained my whole family. Stonehell is also designed using Labyrinth Lord and makes extensive use of the “one page dungeon” model, allowing for a lot of content to be put into the book. The dungeon features a modular design giving it an exceptional amount of flexibility, allowing the dungeon master to pull out pieces of the dungeon for individual use, replace them with his or her own creations, or expand on them easily. A second volume is in the works and there are two supplementary sections available in .pdf format, one for free. They can be found on Curtis’ Lulu site.
I’ve been looking forward to picking this book up for a while and the recent fall sale from Lulu.com was the perfect opportunity. I can’t wait to crack it open and see what secrets it holds.