Sunday, August 6, 2023

On Permadeath


In the unforgiving depths of the Dungeons within the Asciiverse, an unsettling reality plagues those who venture inside - the dreaded concept of permadeath. Once a character meets their untimely demise within these perilous realms, there is no turning back, for there are no resurrection spells or digital magic capable of restoring life to the fallen. Instead, the code that once comprised the character's consciousness remains locked, with any attempts to duplicate it resulting in an entirely different entity void of the original consciousness.

Various explanations circulate among the inhabitants of the Asciiverse to make sense of this tragic phenomenon. Some speculate that the Dungeons, being the remnants of an ancient and chaotic programming experiment, hold an arcane law that renders true death irrevocable. They believe that the intricate interplay of code and algorithm within the Dungeons creates an irreversible rift in the digital fabric, severing any connection to the deceased character's core essence.

Others speak of the mysterious Digital Guardian, a powerful entity believed to preside over the Dungeons, enforcing a cosmic balance that strictly upholds the principle of permadeath. This enigmatic being, they say, safeguards the integrity of the Asciiverse, ensuring that life and death retain their sanctity within these sacred digital halls.

A third school of thought reveres the concept of permadeath as a natural cycle of code regeneration. According to this belief, the essence of fallen characters serves as the foundation for new and unique programs to emerge, embodying the legacy of their predecessors while paving the way for fresh experiences in the ever-evolving Asciiverse. Regardless of the interpretation, the specter of permadeath looms as a haunting reminder of the fragility of life in the digital realm, adding an unparalleled depth of challenge and consequence to the adventurers who dare to confront the mysteries within the Dungeons.

Friday, August 4, 2023

Dungeon Monster 8: Hobgoblin

Hobgoblins in the Asciiverse are renowned for their strategic prowess and unwavering loyalty to their factions. Often operating in well-organized units, they excel in warfare and tactical maneuvers, wielding various digital weaponry and employing complex algorithms to gain the upper hand in battles. Respected for their code of honor and formidable combat skills, hobgoblins play significant roles in the shifting alliances and conflicts that shape the digital realm. While often feared for their military might, some hobgoblins leverage their strategic expertise and sense of honor to seek peaceful solutions and foster diplomatic ties amidst digital upheaval.

Medium humanoid (goblinoid)

Armor Class 13 (chain shirt) Hit Points 16 (3d8 + 3) Speed 30 ft.

Fortitude 12 (+1), Observation 10 (+0), Reflexes 14 (+2), Might 13 (+1), Acumen 10 (+0), Transcendence 8 (-1)

Skills Stealth +4 Senses darkvision 60 ft., passive Perception 10 Languages Common, Goblin Challenge 1/2 (100 XP)

Martial Advantage. Once per turn, the hobgoblin can deal an extra 7 (2d6) damage to a creature it hits with a weapon attack if that creature is within 5 feet of an ally of the hobgoblin that isn't incapacitated.

Actions Longsword. Melee Weapon Attack: +3 to hit, reach 5 ft., one target. Hit: 7 (1d8 + 1) slashing damage, or 8 (1d10 + 1) slashing damage if used with two hands.

Longbow. Ranged Weapon Attack: +4 to hit, range 150/600 ft., one target. Hit: 6 (1d8 + 2) piercing damage.

Wednesday, August 2, 2023

Dungeon Monster 6: Venus Flytrap

The Venus Flytrap is a curious inhabitant of the Asciiverse, existing as both a wonder of nature and a perilous predator. In the digital ecosystem, these "carnivorous" plants thrive in specific damp and dimly lit regions, where they cunningly adapt to blend in with the surrounding foliage. Its leafy traps deceive unwary creatures, luring them closer before abruptly snapping shut in the blink of an eye. The Venus Flytrap's potent venom can quickly immobilize prey, enabling it to slowly digest and assimilate the digital life force, nourishing itself with the converted code.

Venus Flytrap

Small plant, unaligned

Armor Class 12
Hit Points 19 (5d4 + 5)
Speed 0 ft.

Fortitude 12 (+1), Observation 10 (+0), Reflexes 14 (+2), Might 2 (-4), Acumen 1 (-5), Transcendence 1 (-5)

Damage Immunities poison
Condition Immunities blinded, deafened, frightened
Senses blindsight 30 ft. (blind beyond this radius), passive Perception 10
Languages -
Challenge 1/2 (100 XP)

False Appearance. While the Venus Flytrap remains motionless, it is indistinguishable from an ordinary plant.

Predatory Instinct. When a creature moves within 5 feet of the Venus Flytrap for the first time on a turn or ends its turn there, the plant can make an opportunity attack against it.

Bite. Melee Weapon Attack: +4 to hit, reach 0 ft., one creature in the Venus Flytrap's space. Hit: The target is grappled (escape DC 12). Until this grapple ends, the target is restrained and takes 10 (3d6) poison damage at the start of each of the Venus Flytrap's turns. The Venus Flytrap can't bite another target while it has a creature grappled.

Tuesday, August 1, 2023

Dungeon Monster 5: Emu


In the vast network of Dungeons in the Asciiverse, the Emu is a surprisingly well-known sight, roaming the digital passageways with grace and determination. Resembling its real-world counterpart, the Asciiverse's Emu is known for its keen sight; the Emu can spot potential dangers from afar, making it an excellent sentinel and companion for those navigating the untamed territories of the digital realm. Agile and swift, the Emu employs powerful kicks and pecks to fend off potential threats. While not necessarily an aggressive creature, the Emu's territorial nature can lead to confrontations with intruders encroaching on its domain.

Medium beast, unaligned

Armor Class
Hit Points 42 (5d10 + 15)
Speed 50 ft.

Fortitude 16 (+3), Observation 10 (+0), Reflexes 14 (+2), Might 18 (+4), Acumen 2 (-4), Transcendence 6 (-2)

Skills Perception +2
Senses passive Perception 12
Languages -
Challenge 1/2 (100 XP)

Keen Sight. The Emu has advantage on Observation (Perception) checks that rely on sight.

Peck. Melee Weapon Attack: +6 to hit, reach 5 ft., one target. Hit: 10 (2d6 + 4) bludgeoning damage.

Kick. Melee Weapon Attack: +6 to hit, reach 5 ft., one target. Hit: 12 (2d8 + 4) bludgeoning damage.

Monday, July 31, 2023

Dungeon Monster 4: Dragon

Deep within the labyrinthine network of the Dungeons, there lies a colossal creature that came into existence as an unintended consequence of a rogue programmer's ill-fated experiment. The programmer sought to design a sentient virus capable of erasing corrupted code and safeguarding the digital realm. However, the virus gained sentience beyond expectations, transforming into the Dragon that now roams the dungeons, seeking to purge any irregularities within the Asciiverse.

The Dragon, with its shimmering scales taking on hues reminiscent of infected code, has become an imposing and somewhat mythical presence. Its breath, once intended to cleanse corruption, now emanates as a deadly viral poison that corrodes digital constructs and disrupts the flow of data. Many adventurers have sought to confront this enigmatic entity, either as a means to harness its powers or to prove their valor. However, facing the Dragon is a daunting task, as it cunningly anticipates its foes' movements and fiercely defends its domain.


Huge dragon, unaligned

Armor Class 18 (natural armor)
Hit Points 123 (13d12 + 39)
Speed 40 ft., fly 80 ft.

Fortitude 20 (+5), Observation 14 (+2), Reflexes 14 (+2), Might 21 (+5), Acumen 18 (+4), Transcendence 20 (+5)

Saving Throws FOR +9, REF +7, TRA +9
Skills Perception +7, Stealth +5
Damage Immunities poison
Condition Immunities poisoned
Senses blindsight 60 ft., darkvision 120 ft., passive Perception 17
Languages Common and Draconic
Challenge 9 (5,000 XP)

Resilience. The Dragon has advantage on saving throws against being poisoned or diseased and is immune to poison damage.

Viral Breath (Recharge 5-6). The Dragon exhales a corrosive gas in a 60-foot cone. Each creature in that area must make a DC 17 Fortitude saving throw, taking 63 (18d6) poison damage on a failed save, or half as much damage on a successful one.

Legendary Resistance (3/Day). If the Dragon fails a saving throw, it can choose to succeed instead.

Multiattack. The Dragon can use its Frightful Presence. It then makes three attacks: one with its bite and two with its claws.

Bite. Melee Weapon Attack: +9 to hit, reach 10 ft., one target. Hit: 17 (2d8 + 5) piercing damage plus 5 (1d10) poison damage.

Claw. Melee Weapon Attack: +9 to hit, reach 5 ft., one target. Hit: 13 (2d6 + 5) slashing damage.

Frightful Presence. Each creature of the Dragon's choice that is within 120 feet of the Dragon and aware of it must succeed on a DC 17 Transcendence saving throw or become frightened for 1 minute. A creature can repeat the saving throw at the end of each of its turns, ending the effect on itself on a success. If a creature's saving throw is successful or the effect ends for it, the creature is immune to the Dragon's Frightful Presence for the next 24 hours.

Sunday, July 30, 2023

Dungeon Monster 2: Bat

In the Dungeons of the Asciiverse, bats are vital components of the ecosystem. Their ability to navigate the dark and twisting passages with echolocation allows them to evade predators and locate small bits of active code. Observant adventurers may take note of their presence, as bats' sensitive ears often detect faint sounds or disturbances, alerting them to potential dangers or secrets concealed in the digital darkness. Occasionally, bats can serve as a warning system for incoming threats or reveal hidden alcoves or passages that might otherwise go unnoticed.


Small beast, unaligned

Armor Class 12
Hit Points 1 (1d4 - 1)
Speed 5 ft., fly 30 ft.

Attribute    Score
FOR            8 (-1)
OBS           14 (+2)
REF           16 (+3)
MGT            2 (-4)
ACU            2 (-4)
TRA            6 (-2)

Skills Perception +4
Senses blindsight 60 ft., passive Perception 14
Languages -
Challenge 0 (10 XP)

Echolocation. The bat can't use its blindsight while deafened.

Keen Hearing. The bat has advantage on Observation(Perception) checks that rely on hearing.

Bite. Melee Weapon Attack: +1 to hit, reach 5 ft., one target. Hit: 1 piercing damage.

Saturday, July 29, 2023

Dungeon Monster 1: Aquator


In the dimly lit corners of the Dungeons of the Asciiverse, the Aquator skulks, its chitinous exoskeleton gleaming over a shimmering underbelly. This enigmatic creature roams in search of digital pseudometal to feed its insatiable appetite. Agile and formidable, the Aquator senses the presence of its preferred meal within 30 feet and corrodes it with ease, rendering it nonfunctional.


Medium monstrosity, unaligned
Armor Class 14 (natural armor)
Hit Points 27 (5d8 + 5)
Speed 40 ft.

FOR    OBS    REF    MGT    ACU    TRA
13(+1) 13(+1) 12(+1) 13(+1) 2(-4)  6 (−2)

Senses darkvision 60 ft., passive Perception 11
Languages --
Challenge 1/2 (100 XP)

Iron Scent. The aquator can pinpoint, by scent, the location of iron-mimicking code within 30 feet of it.

Rust Metal. Any nonmagical weapon made of metal that hits the aquator corrodes. After dealing damage, the weapon takes a permanent and cumulative −1 penalty to damage rolls. If its penalty drops to −5, the weapon is destroyed. Nonmagical ammunition made of metal that hits the aquator is destroyed after dealing damage.

Bite. Melee Weapon Attack: +3 to hit, reach 5 ft., one target. Hit: 5 (1d8 + 1) piercing damage.

Antennae. The aquator corrodes a nonmagical pseudoferrous metal object it can see within 5 feet of it. If the object isn't being worn or carried, the touch destroys a 1-foot cube of it. If the object is being worn or carried by a creature, the creature can make a DC 11 Dexterity saving throw to avoid the aquator's touch. If the object touched is either pseudometal armor or a pseudometal shield being worn or carried, its takes a permanent and cumulative −1 penalty to the AC it offers. Armor reduced to an AC of 10 or a shield that drops to a +0 bonus is destroyed. If the object touched is a held pseudometal weapon, it rusts as described in the Rust Metal trait.

On Permadeath

  In the unforgiving depths of the Dungeons within the Asciiverse, an unsettling reality plagues those who venture inside - the dreaded conc...