Infinite secret doors

Infinite secret doors

Infinite secret doors

When your players use discern realities hoping to find secret doors, do you add them on the spot? I ask this because when I write up a dungeon crawl I make a map with all secret doors and traps already there. I also design the dungeon with about 8 set pieces/rooms as I find this can be run within a 4-5 hour game.

I know we are suppose to leave blanks but that could extend the game by hours and make the dungeon like swiss cheese with secret doors. Just curious as to your philosophy on this.

8 thoughts on “Infinite secret doors”

  1. The secret doors should not be seen ofcourse. Adding them on the spot would make them visable immediately. Write down where they are in your DM notitions which the players can not see. In this way it easy for you to keep track of the doors which have been found and which ones not.

    Hope this was helpful 😉

  2. I feel that not being constrained by preplanned maps really helps if you’re playing within a set time limit. You can expand, condense, and modify the dungeon as needed. Players taking longer than expected? Cut out the rooms in between and have that door lead right to the Big Bad Evil Sorcerer’s laboratory.

    So to answer your question, why not add secret doors on the fly? You control where they lead and so can have them act as shortcuts if needed.

  3. Would it fictionally make sense to have an infinite number of secret doors? or to have the lair riddled with them like Swiss cheese

    No probably not. Then don’t do that.

    You can always use a GM move when they present you with the golden opportunity. Reveal an unwelcome truth, present an opportunity at a cost or any number of your other GM moves. When the players look to you it’s your turn to make a move. If a secret door is unappealing to you at the time, don’t do it, unless that secret door is actually a mimic, then do that.

  4. Franky Borny this is what I do. Every trap and secret door is on my map. I don’t let doors that weren’t there be found only because my dungeon crawls are designed to fit in a time frame that allows players to start and finish in one sitting. I know its railroady but these are one shot games played when we don’t have our full gaming group.

  5. I don’t mind the railroad nature of many dungeon crawls. Even if they completed gutted a dungeon, something will happily move in that may be worse than the previous inhabitants.  I pre-plan my traps and secret doors, but also add them as needed to move the story along or allow a thief the chance to shine. 

  6. If I’m running a true dungeon-crawl (architecture/monsters/treasure), then a random number of secret doors would be possible.  What if it was a tomb complex of a very sneaky society? If it’s a mapped out dungeon, then , no, I’d stick with what I’ve got.  I might make an expanding list of neat little trinkets that avid searchers can find, however…

  7. Is it interesing, fun, awesome and/or does it advance the story?

    Then do it. Whether it is inserting secret doors or whatever elements into the story.

    If a pre planned element does not answer yes to at least one of the criteria, then ruthlessly cut it on the fly.

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