Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Treasure Stocking Part 2: OD&D Level Size

If you were to stock the first level of a dungeon using the by-the-book OD&D random stocking method, how big a dungeon level would you need to get a group of PC's to second level? We'll ignore, for this post, treasure from placed specials and monster XP.

According to U&WA's "Distribution of Monsters and Treasure" section, two in six rooms have monsters. Of those rooms with monsters, half have treasure. Further, one in six unoccupied rooms have treasure.

We must use different methods to determine the quantity of treasure for occupied and unoccupied rooms.

Rooms without monsters have d6×100sp, a 50% chance of d6×10gp, and a 5% chance of d6 gems, and a 5% chance of d6 pieces of jewelry. Even at such a low percentage, the jewelry really drives up the average treasure values. The average treasure in unoccupied rooms is worth 705 gp.

Treasure in rooms with monsters depends on the monster's treasure type. We're looking at a first level dungeon, so for the sake of simplicity we'll only use treasure types for 1 HD monsters.

This is a problematic topic, because the treasure amounts listed on the M&T "Monster Reference Table" may be for a "lair" or wilderness groups of three or four hundred individuals. For our purposes, I've made some arbitrary decisions about the number of monsters* per dungeon room, and come up with a treasure amount of 576 gp per occupied room. As with the unoccupied room average, the jewelry values pushed this number higher than I'd have guessed.

The magic number here is 1046 XP for every six dungeon rooms. The average OD&D character needs 2,000 XP to reach second level. With that, we can calculate the number of rooms required to provide that experience for parties of various sizes:

# PC'sMin. XPMin. # Rooms

If we use the number of players provided in the introduction to Men & Magic, we see some really sprawling dungeon levels:

# PC'sMin. XPMin. # Rooms

But then, when running a 50 player game, maybe you actually put 400 orcs in a room....

* Number of monsters per dungeon room:
10-100 -> 1d6 (avg 3.5)
20-200 -> 1d10 (avg 5.5)
30-300 -> 2d6 (avg 7)
40-400 -> 2d10 (avg 11)

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