Diagrams as an Alternative to Maps

Goblin Hidey Hole.png Relatively recently I wrote an adventure, called Goblin Hidey Hole. It's not much more than a typical dungeon crawl involving killing a bunch of goblins and goblin hybrids (half-troll, half-goblin), but I did try something new.

I built the map for the adventure in a diagram editing program called Dia.

I reasoned, based on the way I often write my dungeons, I don't actually need a map. Basically, players never see the map, so it's for the GM's eyes only. It doesn't even need to be pretty. It just has to convey a few simple ideas.

Something similar to a flowchart fits the bill almost perfectly, so I gave it a try.

I got the idea from maps of old text adventure games. Those were always abstract and never involved any kind of real detail, because that would have been superfluous. I've begun to feel the same about my adventure maps.

I don't really like how it looks, to be honest. It's ugly. However, it does the job.

As far as experiments go, I feel it's a successful one, but I really would prefer a better approach. Some kind of hybrid between my earlier efforts and this one.

I don't want ugly. I want pretty. I just don't want to work as hard as I did with Clearing the Gnomish Mines.

Ah, middle ground, where are you?

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