|Dante's Underworld doesn't care if you survive. Neither does Leptis Magna.|
Since the game world I'm using now is one I intend to be used for multiple campaigns and different rule sets, I have created enough dungeon space to keep the group going for a long, long time. There are, as I count now, 3 megadungeons including Leptis Magna, Spiderspire, the Necropolis of Voor, and several more large dungeons that I know exist within the known portion of the world. Too many, you might say. Just enough, at least for my gamer ADD, is what I say. Surely the PCs will not become embroiled in all of them, but see, in my world, they are interconnected in a very Underdark sort of way. Tunnels to and from different dungeon areas exist underneath the continents, and some of them might as well be mega-highways for the nasties below ground. Some of the dungeons have their own sets of rules, like the Necropolis of Voor, which seems to come alive to repel any attempts to gather its secrets, going back to the idea some have maintained about the dungeon as an "underworld" setting. Not entirely off base, although I don't think I'd necessarily declare it to the players in my campaign. We'll have to see how far I can take the idea, depending on my gumption levels. One thing I will definitely adhere to is a rule I have about dungeon ecology - the dungeon doesn't care if a game is balanced. It does what makes sense. If it makes sense for a gaggle of nasties too difficult for the players to defeat to live in a particular area on Level 1, well, then, they're going to live there. If the PCs don't run, they face their fate with blank expressions and morbid surprise. This is going to be difficult for my group to grasp at first. They're used to 3.5 and 4E. The balance factors present in those versions of The Game may have spoiled my guys. This I shall accept. They began playing that way with 2E and I was surely part of that problem. I facilitated it. But no more. Take an extra PC, suckers. Don't worry, if they die, I'll make it fun. Or gross. Or both.