Work on my re-imagined version of the Slave Pits of the Undercity progresses slowly. Let me first share my most recent map using the 3x5 index card method:
It is here that I have to make a confession. When constructing a dungeon for my own use, I rarely spend much time stocking the dungeon — it is my least favorite part of the whole process.
In part, this is because I tend to be a more improvisational Referee through the use of Wandering Monster Tables. I like to be surprised. The other is that I just don't like writing room descriptions. When I occasionally do run a module, I find that these descriptions actually get in the way of game play. In fact, I have often gotten critical pieces of information wrong that have affected entire sessions (not that there is anything wrong with that, but it can be frustrating from my side of the screen).
I do have some exciting ideas bubbling up as I continue to mediate upon this adventure; however, I am not excited about putting them down on paper. I don't want to just do this like every other adventure is done and therefore follow a path that frustrates me while I am at the table.
Personally, I prefer a quick reference sheet for my dungeons at the table. Monster stats, treasure, short trap descriptions and a short description of the use of the room (but not of the room itself). However, I am beginning to see that there are some over-arching themes and issues that go well beyond this particular method.
For my own purposes, the quick reference would be enough — I know what the over-arching themes are and can easily improv their impact on any given room or encounter; however, the end user would not.
Therefore, I have a few questions: if I were to produce a .pdf, what would be your preferred method of room descriptions? What would be the most useful way for me to describe these over-arching issues? Do you have an extant example of a module that is easy to use at the table?
12 hours ago