A well-designed, well-paced adventure hangs on the exit map. And designing a good exit map is more about incentives and psychological tricks than it is about walls and doors.
Maps aren’t just maps. Maps are tools for organizing and presenting information. As a prelude to building an exit map, we’re going to organize our information and figure out just what maps our megadungeon needs and who they’re for. Also, we’ll do some mapping.
Here’s a Megadungeon article about why there isn’t a Megadungeon article. Paradoxically. Think of it as a project update and a preview of a very big, exciting development.
Information management is one of the trickiest parts of adventure design. Our Megadungeon has a story to tell. We have to figure out how to tell it. And also figure out what that story actually is.
They say starting is the hardest part. But really, RESTARTING is much harder. Especially if you’ve burn out. So, how do you recover from burn out on a project you used to love? And how do you avoid burn out in the future?
It’s almost time to map our dungeon. By that, I mean, I WANT to start mapping our dungeon. But, like everything else in this giant project, we have to figure out how best to do something before we start actually doing it.
Good game design is about understanding incentives. But incentives aren’t enough. Rewards only encourage good behavior. To discourage bad behavior, sometimes you need to beat someone with a stick.
Encapsulation: the art of designing around nonexistent systems and filling in the blanks later. It’s an important skill, but there comes a time when you have to fill in the blanks. Say, by designing a random encounter system for your megadungeon.