Basic OSR Dungeon Procedure


Dungeon Crawl Procedure


  1. Marching Order
    1. Marching Leader
    2. Scouts
    3. Mapper/Caller
  2. Dungeon Turn–10 Minutes of Activity
    1. Movement: Your full movement rate or less.
    2. Rest and Recuperation: Heal 1d3 HP and eat meals.
    3. Search 10*10 ft. Area for:
      1. Secret Features
      2. Secret Doors
      3. Hidden Traps and Hazards
      4. Hidden Treasure
    4. Secure 10*10 ft. Area or Portal: Make an area or portal safe with use of own equipment or items found in said area.
  3. Forced Rest
    1. After every five turns, party must rest or incur -1 penalty on all rolls
    2. Penalty is accumulative
  4. Wandering Monsters
    1. After every two turns
    2. 1 in 6 chance of encounter, +1 for every sensory giveaway (i.e. footprints, noise, strong smell of/or fragrant food, and etc.)

Basic OSR Dungeon Procedure Ex. I

Dungeon March Procedure

  1. Marching Order. Determine the locations and roles of each party member relative to each other. You may only change the marching order after a long rest.
    • Narrow Marching Order. Determine stacking order on a single column march.
    • Wide Marching Order. Determine stacking order on a two column march.
    • Forward Unit Order. Determine the locations of scouts/outriders sent ahead to scout for the party relative to each other, as well as how far away from the main party they will be operating.
    • Support Unit Order. Determine the locations of scouts/outriders following behind the party relative to each other, as well as how far away from the main party they will be operating.
    • Party Roles
      • March Leader
        • Primary authority for rolling the dice in group initiative and reaction rolls.
        • Primary authority for deciding where to go and what to do as a party.
        • Primary and default authority for keeping quest items, keys, and other such items of the same nature.
        • DM will default on March Leader’s decisions when party remains undecided for too long.
      • Mapper/Caller
        • Responsible for tracking and drafting a map for the session.
        • Responsible for reading handouts, diseminating information meant for a group, as well as making and keeping the party’s notes.
        • Primary authority for rolling the dice on chance of getting lost rolls or trap activation rolls.
      • Scouts/Outrider
        • Party members tasked with operating away from the main group as a form of forward or defensive reconnaisance. These will be your Forward or Support Units.
        • Responsible for rolling the dice for surprise rolls.
  2. March Protocol. Determine the presumed acts your party members will be doing as they traverse the dungeon environment.
    • For each presumed act a party is doing, reduce the movement rate of the party by five.
    • A party may only change the details of their march protocol during a long rest.
    • Presumed acts. These acts include, but are not limited to:
      • Detecting secret doors;
      • Listening for noise;
      • Maintaining spells;
      • Looking for traps; and
      • So on while noting which character is doing which presumed acts. Said character will be responsible for rolling the dice relative to his presumed act.
  3. Forward/Support Unit Protocol. Determine the presumed acts your party members will be doing as your scouts or outriders, taking note of any class or racial abilities especially suited for such. This includes, but is not limited to:
    • Prevent an ambush;
    • Prepare an ambush;
    • Flank an encountered monster, +2 Attack;
    • Set traps; and
    • So on. You may only change the details of your Forward or Support Units during a long rest wherein said units are capable or reasonably close enough to be given new orders.
    • For every 30 square feet of distance a unit is asked to operate away from the main party, the party will receive:
      • A +1 bonus to catching a monster by surprise
      • A +1 bonus to preventing a monster from catching the party by surprise; and
      • A +1 bonus to a 1 in 6 chance of cutting the unit off from the main party.
      • A +1 bonus to a 1 in 6 chance of cutting the unit off from the main party if the passage ahead is branching or forked.
  4. Watch Order. Determine the shifts each party member will take when watching over the rest of the party during an extended rest while noting the bonuses or penalties they might benefit from or suffer as the chosen night watch.
  5. Penalties. Failure to fill roles or specify the acts your party members will be doing during a crawl will bar you from the benefit of doing any of these acts. For example, if you have no one looking for traps while exploring a corrider, you will have no chance of detecting any traps thereon. Hence, the trap will automatically activate when triggered per the usual 2 in 6 chance.

Dark Albion House Rules

Dark Albion House Rules

Character Creation Summary

Every character begins as a level 0 character. Roll their social class background and prior events. They begin the game with 1d6 hit-points, modified by CON (Scots Men get a further +1 bonus hit-point). The GM can automatically move them to level 1, or play one adventure as level 0; yet, if level 0 the players should already have a clear idea of what class they want their character to become at level 1, particularly if they plan for the character to become a magister or cleric (who will be apprentices or acolytes).

Characters begin speaking Anglish (Cymri speak old cymric if they have INT 9+; Scots only speak Scot, which sounds vaguely similar to Anglish at times). Characters speak one extra language for every +1 to their INT modifier.

Exp to Level 1: Finish one adventure.

Level 0 Saving Throws

Breath Attacks

Poison or Death

Petrify or Paralyze


Spells or Spell-like Devices






RAW Prime Requisite is in effect

Instead of using your Prime Requisite as a bonus to XP gained, subtract it from XP needed to level up. Instead of +5% bonus, just assume you only need 95% as much XP.


When you succeed in moving silently and attack a target who is unaware; you receive a +1 bonus on that attack.


Encumbrance in Coins

Move in 1 Turn

Up to 400

120 : 40 : 120


90 : 30 : 90


60 : 20 : 60


30 : 10 : 30


15 : 5 : 15




Move in 1 Turn

Up to 3,000

120 : 40 : 120


60 : 30 : 60




Encumbrance Rule of Thumb: 1 Pound is equivalent to 10 gold coins

HD Complexity House Rule

alternative title: Blood and Breath

In this house rule, both your hit dice and your hit points may effectively be decimated given the mechanics that follow.


  1. HD is short for hit dice.
  2. HD measures the amount of dice to be used to determine Maximum HP.
  3. HP is short for hit points.
  4. This house rule assumes a ruleset that applies a cap or limit on regaining hit points.
  5. This house rule assumes a ruleset that utilizes frequent re-rolls of hit points.

CON Bonus

Your modifier from your Constitution’s ability score will no longer be applied to your hit points. Instead, it will be treated as either a penalty or a bonus for any damage done directly to your hit dice. Hence, when you express your HD, it should look like this:

HD 8(-3)

Hit Points

Thus, being that CON scores no longer modify hit points, their rate of results should now be more or less uniform among those of the same class. This is especially important for house rules where hit points are periodically re-rolled.

Hit Dice Decimation

Currently, there are only two direct or ordinary ways of damaging HD. These are through critical hits and backstabs. By themselves, these two will behave mechanically as they ordinarily do given an OSR ruleset.

Hit points serve as a sort of damage soak as well as a measure of combat effectiveness for any given creature. Where a hit is critical, or a backstab is successful, hit points are ignored and damage is directly delivered to hit dice.

As a general rule, loss of hit dice will not immediately affect a creature’s hit point value. Instead, the following things may occur.

0 HD

If a creature is reduced to zero hit dice, it must now make a save against death. If it fails this save, it dies from the hit. If it succeeds on this saving throw, it must now roll from the critical injury table below.

Critical Injury Table
1d6 Result Description
1 Maiming suffer permanent ability score loss to an ability appropriate to the situation
2 Organ Failure creature incapacitated, must make save against death everyday until major surgery is performed
3 Minor Internal Bleeding 1d3 hit point loss per round of combat or per turn of dungeon exploration until major surgery is performed
4 Major Internal Bleeding 1d6 hit point loss per round of combat or per turn of dungeon exploration until major surgery is performed
5 Partial Crippling Minor loss of limb, suffer -2 penalty on all actions or reduce movement speed by a third until lost appendage is regrown
6 Total Crippling Major loss of limb, inability to perform actions or inability to move until lost appendage is regrown

After applying the injury, the creature shall remain at 0 HD until major surgery is performed or decides to convalesce. At 0 HD, a creature is only ever entitled to 1 hit point should a re-roll apply.

In the meantime, whatever hit points remain after hit dice decimation shall benefit the creature for as long as it lasts or until it is re-rolled.

0 HD and 0 HP

If a creature is ever reduced to 0 hit dice and 0 hit points at the same time, said creature dies immediately without save or exception.

Hit Dice Decimation Rate

When hit dice is decimated, the rate of reduction is not directly proportionate to the damage delivered. Instead, we follow the HD decimation rate table below.

HD Decimation Rate Table
Damage Decimation
1 to 5 1 point of decimation
6 to 10 2 points of decimation
11 to 15 4 points of decimation
16 to 20 5 points of decimation
21 or more 6 points of decimation

Separating Hit Dice from Hit Points, and complicating Armor Class

HP and HP

The HD and HP idea comes apes the Flesh and Grit mechanic of another OSR ruleset I forgot the name of, but I learned about from Cavegirl’s own OSR game. But, I’m going to complicate it a bit by adding Scarlet Heroes’ HD damage table.

Some attacks damage HD directly. Most attacks, however, must deplete HP first. Zero HD is death. Zero HP is loss of combat effectiveness. HD can only be replenished through major medical attention. Damaged HD will also the number of dice used for HP accordingly. HP is replenished through rest and eating, or minor medical attention.

Separating HD from HP also makes it a simpler thing to use that other mechanic I found out about concerning re-rolling HP whenever a party rests and eats, with good quality rest and eating choosing whichever roll is highest, and so on.

And as for CON bonuses, such bonuses will only apply as extra hits to one’s HD, not extra dice.

So, in summary: HD+Hit Bonus is separate from HP. Only HD creates HP.

AC and AP

With the same idea as above. AC creates Armor Points. Armor points act as Damage Soak and Durability for the armor and will make equipment maintenance much more present in games.

Primarily, the rules here are for ascending DC mechanics.

So, AC will serve as a base for AD, or Armor Dice. Armor Dice will be based on quality, ranging from poor quality D4 armor all the way up to legendary d20 armor. AC will also determine how many of said AD will be thrown to determine AP.

Before an attack could hit HP, it must first deplete AP. But, and attack from behind ignores AP. If an enemy hits, the attack goes straight to HP.

So, in summary: deplete AP first to deplete HP, then deplete HP to deplete HD.

Repairing armor allows you to re-roll your AP, but Zero AP means the armor is salvageable.

Alpha 408c Playtest 1.5

I haven;t actually yet decided just what or who these Ogres are. Would I make them the second sentient race to occupy this world? But first, let’s ask some World Building questions to confirm some ideas I have in my head.

Me Is the [Human] race native to Mauba’na’?
Me IS the [Nonhuman] race native to Mauba’na’?
ORACLE Yes, but, with complications. A piece of gear has failed to work for either the hero or an NPC.
Me Interest. Was this [Nonhuman] race once human?
Me I’m going to interpret this as a race that had once been something else, but changed due to the failure of used artifact. What was the nature of this failure?
ORACLE Treachery because of History and Duty then Coins.
Me Interesting. What is the nature of their relationship with the World Creator?
ORACLE Despair then Guilt. Innocence and Fear then Courage.
Me What is the nature of the relationship between the native [Human] race and with the world creator?
ORACLE Honor. Pride. Blindness and Seizure and Poison.
Me Did the World Creator also create the races?
Me Oh wow, that is a very interesting turn of events. Ok. Did the World Creator have anything to do with the Artifact?
ORACLE No, but a fact the hero thinks they know is actually wrong.
Me Oh wow, which means the Artifact and its use and consequent failure remains a mystery. Ok. Well, this settles it. The Ogres are the [Nonhuman] race of Mauba’na’.

That said, some ideas I’d like for an [Ogre] race:

  • A monstrous looking race. They have spines for hair.
  • An enourmous race. They have six arms.
  • An insectile race. Explains the six arms. Vestigial wings as secondary set of arms; used to hold equipment. Smaller, more dextrous tertiary arms beneath the primary ones, serve as communicative aids and fine-tool using arms. Tertiatry arms can’t hold weapons, Secondary arms can’t use weapons. Also, they grow carapace instead of skin, an exoskeleton instead of a skeleton. Still, the appearance is tempered somewhat with more homonid features. Almost like a six armed giant wearing powerarmor.
  • An Arthurian Ogrish race, they are bearded and extremely magical.
  • Carapace Color Spectrum: Red, Orange, Yellow. Red is Boss. Orange is Mage or Elite. Yellow is Minion. Some of it is dazzling, most of it is dull and basic.
  • Ogre; No. Appear: 1d6 (2d6); Armor Class: 5; Attacks: 1 fist +4 or 1 weapon +4; Damage: 1d6 or by weapon; Move: 30’; Morale: 9; Hit Dice: 4; Skill Bonus: +2 Treasure: H3 (H4)

That’s enough for now. Next entry, we progress the plot.