Is the plural of megadungeon simply megadungeon…

So, in returning to my megadungeon idea from the original City States game I realized there were three reasonable places to put it. Each is unique and in my inspiration has what is required. I thought I faced a tough choice.

Or do I?

If the megadungeon is a mythic underworld does it have to be in a single location. We’re not talking multiple entrances like most have, but multiple locations such that it can be entered in places as separated in our world as America’s Stonehenge, The Seattle Underground, and Carlsbad Caverns (which while not my goal here, if I wanted a megadungeon for my Demon Haunted World this would work).

Nor I am talking about something like the Underdark in the Forgotten Realms. There would be no realistic sense of distance or magical gates that connected the sections. You could simply walk through a normal dungeon region and walk out thousands of miles away. The problem, of course, is how to justify this without making it a valid route of travel for people. If that was so the dungeon, or at least the trade routes, would be controlled by some power for that purpose. Although, as an idea, that alone isn’t too bad if used sparingly.

5 thoughts on “Is the plural of megadungeon simply megadungeon…

  1. I had meant to include the China bit for Castle Greyhawk but had completely forgotten about the demiplanes.

    Actually the demiplanes might be great idea to connect the locals: a demiplane that represents the mingling of their two ideas is the connection. Say you have sections at Mount Rushmore and Yucca Mountain. The could be connected by a demiplane populated by radioactive giant alchemists.

  2. I've been contemplating a setup like this. There are underworldly caverns and passages between locations that after a quarter mile or less in the twisting passages of the underworld come out to places hundreds or thousands of miles apart. The secrets of the passages were teased out by adventurers and explorers who traveled the underworld and cleared them of the strange denizens and beasts that dwell there, and an empire was formed by the greatest among them all across the world.

    In time, they began to work as guides and guards for those using the underworld routes for trade or travel on the existing routes and stopped venturing into unexplored routes. Unfortunately, those who lurked in those uncharted areas bided their time until they could venture out of the tunnels and destroy those who invaded their subterranean homes.

    After incursions from the underworld, the empire was shattered since the only tenable links between its far-flung homelands were the passages, and those were blocked by their terrible guardians. In time, some would travel over land and sea to find out how other parts of the empire fared and reestablish contact with any that survived. Few did.

    Now two hundred years later the local lord has decided to unseal the opening to the passages and let those of of stout heart and foolish bent venture within again to see if the underworld can once again be conquered, and restore the empire to its former glory.

  3. Why shouldn't it be a valid path of trade and travel? Maybe some monster race controls a few levels and handles trade for an exhorbitant fee. Maybe they are relatively recent interlopers and something older lurks deeper within; maybe that thing awakes and sets off a scramble among factions to control the upper levels. The party could be hired by any number of groups seeking to tip the balance in their favor. Or maybe there was once such a path and tge party are being hired to find it again. Go with it, Dude!

  4. I hate to invoke it, but perhaps you could make it like the Ways in Robert Jordan's WHEEL OF TIME novels? Kind of like some mysterious or fey realm that is only peripherally connected to our world, constructed somehow long, long ago by people who are forgotten and now inhabited by horrors beyond our ken?

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