Concept: dungeon filled with deadly traps and terrible curses, except the dungeon is so old that the creatures that built and inhabited it didn’t even slightly resemble humans, so all of the traps are based on incorrect assumptions about the scale and gross anatomy of hypothetical invaders, and all of the curses have very strange ideas concerning what ought to be harmful – and, in some cases, even what constitutes harm – for their victims.
It would be really, really great to watch a party try and piece together information about the ancient builders from their traps. It would be, perhaps, even better to include a puzzle that required some degree of anatomical deduction to solve.
“This piece is moving. It must be some kind of floorplate. Hey, someone stand over here.”
“Didn’t we agree these things floated? Why would they have floorplates?”
“No, that was before we figured out they had some kind of oobleck sac for their organs.”
“Well either way, they can’t have weighed more than 25 pounds, so if you keep stepping on that you’re going to break it.”
Ohhh, I read this very wrong initially, and thought it was creatures who had never seen humans trying to build a dungeon to stop humans/humanoids from entering. So all the traps are super weird based on the varying opinions of the builders. Like, one trap would be too high, or another would drop this gross slime that they thought would be acidic but is really only stinky and hard to move in. 😅
Both are excellent approaches, for completely different reasons.
Magic trap that lifts you up in the air, tumbles you upside down a few times, then sets you gently on the floor. The dungeon builders’ anatomy was such that they would be seriously damaged if their entire body was inverted, so the idea was that it would kill or incapacitate any intruder without making a big mess or rendering them hard to identify.
The PCs are severely delayed while those members of the party that like fun compete to have another go on the trap, which is about on par with a roller coaster ride.
#story ideas I will never write #death mention