Navigate Maze Conflict

Should your party stumble into a maze, treat it as a trap. They can successfully navigate it with a Dungeoneer test using the factors below:

Suggested Help: Cartographer, Scout

Maze Factors

Size: small, medium, labyrinthine

Hazards (choose all that apply): monsters, traps, temperature

Construction: man-made, natural, magical

Twist: Go to Navigate Maze Conflict.

Navigate Maze Conflict

Skills and Abilities for Disposition

Skill: Dungeoneer
Add to Rank: Will

Conflict Ability and Skills Used by Action

Attack: Dungeoneer
Defend: Scout or Cartographer
Feint: Dungeoneer
Maneuver: Scout or Cartographer

Maneuver: Characters who succeed on a Maneuver with a margin of 3 successes may perform a special action: Loot. Roll 1d6 on the table below, and then roll on the appropriate subtable:


1-2: Stuff
3-5: Gear
6: Valuables

Suggested Compromises:

Minor: Exhausted or Angry

Solid: The characters lose a piece of gear in the maze

Major: Any map they make of the maze is inaccurate. Should they pass back through it, they will need to test again.

Labyrinth of Trials
Might: 4
Nature: 4
Descriptors: Misdirecting, Enclosing, Sprawling

Conflict Disposition

Navigate Maze: 9

Conflict Weapons

Attack: +1D Winding Caverns
Defend: +1D You’ve Been Here Before, Haven’t You?
Feint: +1D Dead End

Special: The turn clock advances at the top of each round of this conflict. During this phase, players may light new torches and eat food. If the Hungry and Thirsty Condition is earned, the Conflict Captain chooses which member of the team suffers a loss to their disposition. Reduce maximum disposition for the duration of the conflict.

Very cool. Although… I wonder how long you could milk it for loot? Maybe each maze only has so much loot available, or each time you loot it requires one more MOS.

Vanguard ran this conflict for us the other night and it’s very difficult to milk for loot. Though we tried, we quickly realized that we’d run out of light and food if we let it go on too long.

Disarm is difficult to achieve unless you can manage to script wisely for an independent test. Also, the longer you attempt maneuvers, the more you prolong the fight, which feeds back to dwindling light and food sources.

Also I should point out that if you opt to clear hungry & thirsty between rounds and then come up on another fourth round, your maximum disposition is going to drop again. Though, of course, you could opt not to clear hungry & thirsty, but then everyone becomes exhausted. Navigating the maze wears you down.

Another thing: I’m going to subtly suggest that you add the minotaur as a weapon. (yes, again)

The Druids of Fyndel probably weren’t aware of Minotaurs. Or maybe they were. You’re just going to have to roll Lore Master if you want to know.

I do think it’s a good point to bring up - if you put monsters in your maze, make them weapons. If the party loses, use them in your twist. Nothing like being cornered at a dead end and have to Kill/Drive Off/Flee when you have no idea where you are.

Yeah, I’m not super concerned about the potential for loot abuse. Margin of 3 successes is pretty hard and, as you can, see, it’s still a gamble.

Have you tested this? I’ve been very curious how something like this would work.

I ran this for Grover and our group on Wednesday night. It worked pretty well. Tracking turns at the top of each round went nice and smoothly. I will say that this particular maze was not super lethal (it wasn’t supposed to be), but it did eat up a few turns, food, and light, which was really the intent. My favorite thing that came out of it was that one of our players used a ration to create a trail of crumbs as a weapon.

Is there anything in particular you wanted to know?

I like the hack for tracking turns! I can see it being extrapolated.

What do you think about a journey conflict that requires a turn per action?

That might be an improvement to Jais’ Wilderness Journey Hack:

I like the idea. I think the turn clock should still be active for conflicts which are happening over a longer period of time, even if it’s not quite on a 1 roll = 1 turn scale.

I’ve been thinking about this… What if instead of a 1 turn/action = 1 round economy, you gave the terrain a “special” maneuver option that would cost players turns? Like an Impede, but instead of -1D you could cost them turns equal to MoS or something.

Could we playtest something like that, Vanguard? would be happy to try to hammer something out with you and see where it goes. I think Zwan wants to head to the Wizard’s tower, which might be a good opportunity to try something out if he lives that long.

Let me think about this. You guys have spent so much time mucking about in Fyndel that I haven’t really had to consider things like Journey conflicts. Just off the top of my head, losing a number of turns equal to a margin of success seems brutal. It’s also almost guaranteed to put you in a situation without light on your next roll. Not that it can’t be solved, of course, but the mechanics need to be smooth if I’m going to create a custom conflict that changes rules rather than have you roll a Pathfinder test and then use a Twist to introduct a complication (and then a conflict).

Edit: I think in a journey conflict I would use maneuvers to buy effects like snuffing your torch, reducing the number of rations you have (ie, fresh rations spoil), or increase the number of turns the conflict takes (ie, the next action takes up two turns) rather than using margin of success to effect the turn clock directly. Would obviously create player effects (shortcut: the next action doesn’t cost a turn, etc).

Edit 2: I’ll work some rules up this weekend. I doubt you’ll be using them for a session or two, but I sat on the maze rules for a session or two and tweaked them as I thought about them more.

I’ve been thinking about travel rules a lot lately and would love to chat about it during our next session. Now that we’re expanding our understanding of the world a little bit, I’d really like to get into some more large scale exploration. I get that that’ll put a pretty heavy load on our intrepid GM, but there’s no rush, and I think it’d be rewarding for everyone. Rorik is certainly going to be eager to confront his estranged family in the remote dwarven village, and perhaps even explore the ruins of THE CITY THAT SHALL NOT BE NAMED. It’d be cool to work some journey-action into the game.

Good thoughts. MoS is probably ridiculous, but I can definitely jive with buying effects.

You’ve almost solved the light source problem here in relation to turn expenditures in a journey conflict. Like, for instance if I say we only want to travel by day and the terrain wins a maneuver, you could buy a disarm effect that nicks one of our torches and narrate something like ‘we were trying to bed down for the night as the sun set but ran out of daylight before we got to a safe place.’ It’s a good narrative hook on top of being an interesting result of a roll. Or am I crazy yet again?

I sent you guys an email showing what I came up with last night, but they’re not ready for a thread yet. One thing I was thinking about in designing them is my friends who hiked the Appalachian Trail.They didn’t move at night, but they woke up with the sun and went to bed with it and covered about 35 miles per day. We also know from playing RPGs that you never travel at night as that’s when bad things happen. I don’t think Journey conflicts should make light a component. Food and Gear should be the resources that the players and GM have a tug-of-war about.

Keep in mind: 35 miles on prepared trails, with no night watch. Burdened, paranoid adventurers schlepping stuff overland should move much slower (some jungle expeditions only make it a few miles per day, what with heat, constant lookout for danger, and the chopping of vines and other obstructions.