Almost all my attention so far has been on the adventure nodes themselves. I have completely neglected the links between them.
This ignores one of the critical elements of this design practice. As with my entity template, nodes without links are merely curiosities: they might have some interesting elements, but if you can’t actually get to them, it doesn’t matter.
I am going to break out the node map and see what links we have present, and show how they might work.
There are fourteen edges (connections between nodes) to describe.
|Node 1||Node 2||Edge|
|Castle||Catacomb||The castle is located on a promontory, and there sepulchers and crypts carved into the stone under the castle. They reach much farther than many could even imagine, even down to the catacombs if you know the way.|
|Castle||Forest||The slope leading up to the castle is well-wooded. At one point there was a road through the forest, but this has become overgrown in the decades since the castle was razed.|
|Castle||River||The castle was originally built in part to oversee the river traffic, and is near the cliff down to it. An adequately skilled climber might be able to find a way up, and someone who falls from the top might be lucky enough to survive hitting the water. Farther upriver are|
|Catacomb||Graveyard||The graveyard is built unusually high on the slope between the town and castle, to keep the interred from bursting from the sodden ground. The richest from the town are interred in mausoleums, most others are interred in catacombs cut into the stone.|
|Forest||Graveyard||The graveyard is located in a region of the forest with (artificially) lighter growth. The boundaries of the graveyard are marked with a fence made of stone posts and wooden rails.|
|Forest||Plains||The forest grows over the entire hill side, down to where the ground gets too wet. You can cross the border between them almost anywhere.|
|Forest||Town||The forest grows all around the town, with roads (in varying condition) leading to the mines, the graveyard, the plains, the castle, and away from this location altogether.|
|Graveyard||Town||The graveyard is located somewhat above the town, and there is a (sadly) well-traveled road between them.|
|Lair||Mine||Deep within the mine, Something was uncovered that should not have been. It might be possible to treat the lair as a dangerous way of escaping or of invading the mine.|
|Lair||Swamp||Whatever lairs below the mine, it probably likes the stagnant waters of the swamp and is likely the source of the roaring heard by those few willing to dare the swamp.|
|Mine||Town||The mine is the primary source of prosperity for the town, and the road between them is well-maintained.|
|Plains||River||After the river passes the castle it enters a floodplain. Every year during the wet season it drops an immense amount of fertile soil (and fallen trees and dead animals) across the plain. It is easy to work your way upriver, somewhat harder through the swamp downriver, and the river’s course through the plain changes annually.|
|Plains||Swamp||Downriver of the floodplain, the water almost stops moving altogether. It’s easy to find, it’s not so easy to find your way out. There are a couple of small villages near the seashore (the opposite side of the swamp) but very from the town or the farm villages would ever survive to find their way there.|
|Plains||Town||The floodplains below the town are the town’s primary source of food. The road is constantly maintained to keep it passable, but it is almost always rutted. The best-maintained sections are often lined with logs to skid sleds full of supplies back and forth, with firmer paths on either side where animals can draw the sleds.|
Dungeons usually have very hard limits on travel between points of interest. In overland exploration (or ‘wilderness adventure’) you can have much more freedom, going more or less anywhere you want to along any route you choose… but there are usually specific routes that are much easier to follow. This is both a convenience and, in a threatening area, something of a hazard.
In other words, you have an opportunity to make knowledgeable decisions that can make a difference in outcome, how things turn out. Understanding the nature of the connections between the adventure nodes can lead to greater player agency, and I’m always in favor of that.