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Thread: D&D style maps of actual dungeons, keeps, and castles?

  1. #1

    Post D&D style maps of actual dungeons, keeps, and castles?

    I'm a big fan of Turgenev's old school D&D style maps.

    I'm inspired to make some of my own, but as I look through some of my creations from Middle School, they strike me as preposterous. There are, for example, no bathroom facilities. Where did all those demon lords and goblins go to the bathroom? Not to mention eat, get fresh water, etc.

    So I would like to try my hand at making a slightly more sophisticated dungeon, one in which the floor plan makes sense. You know, instead of opening this door and there's a room with two goblins in it, you get the part where the goblins slept, ate, stored their weapons, etc. I think this would be cool.

    But my imagination fails me.

    So does anybody know of maps like those old D&D style maps, but rendered of actual dugeons, keeps, and castles? Anybody know where I can get some of those? I think studying them would be very instructive, and the dungeons you could make as a result of this study much more believable.
    Last edited by Bumberbog; 02-28-2010 at 01:58 PM.

  2. #2
    Community Leader Facebook Connected Ascension's Avatar
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    Jun 2008
    St. Charles, Missouri, United States


    Fantasy demon lords don't poop...they just rip heads off. The best resource that I came across for realistic floor plans was at the I bought a whole bunch of castle and medieval books. Never found one for dungeons.
    If the radiance of a thousand suns was to burst at once into the sky, that would be like the splendor of the Mighty One...I am become Death, the Shatterer of worlds.
    -J. Robert Oppenheimer (father of the atom bomb) alluding to The Bhagavad Gita (Chapter 11, Verse 32)

    My Maps ~ My Brushes ~ My Tutorials ~ My Challenge Maps

  3. #3

    Default Dungeons not really reality

    Lots of buildings can be like dungeons but the classic 'dungeon' in the adventure sense almost doesn't exist. Buildings are very very expensive in labour and materials. Tombs exist - usually intended to be fully occupied. Some royal residences serve as prisons for noble captives - Tower of London, see the imprisonment of Mary Queen of Scots. Some buried temples and ruins exist - barrows, perhaps the palace at Knossus.

    Most medieval prisons were small by rpg standards - often a room or two, maybe a set of pits. I suspect this was because they were expensive and perhaps unsightly. Work houses were bigger because they actually produced something.

    Modern buildings - Schools not in use, Chernobyl - vacated town, and many modern prisons are far closer to 'dungeons' on the grand RPG scale of things.

    btw Here's a cool blog entry with lots of real images and evocative talk about themes etc...
    Last edited by Sigurd; 02-28-2010 at 11:13 AM.

    Dollhouse Syndrome = The temptation to turn a map into a picture, obscuring the goal of the image with the appeal of cute, or simply available, parts. Maps have clarity through simplification.

    --- Sigurd

  4. #4


    I remember playing a TSR dungeon a long time ago where a fair part of the story took place in the attic of a manor. The manor, including the attic, was nicely mapped, but they forgot to include some stairs or a ladder to actually reach that attic. Also, while there was a bathroom (or several) included, the bathtub measured 5x10 feet, and the (single) beds were even bigger...

    To be honest, these were the least of the problems we had with that adventure (it went from hilarious to downright sad), and since then we have never played another ready-made dungeon again.

    Edit: It was TSR #2509 "Night of the Vampire" for those interested.

  5. #5
    Guild Member sigurdbjohansson's Avatar
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    Aug 2010
    Oslo, Norway


    try this one for some inspiration...
    -Sigurd Sigurd Brutus Motor-

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