How sweet is this student-created dungeon?
I directed my students to roll for (or select) a plot hook -- this kid went with "Rescue" -- but in an interesting twist, the "captive" is the Lost Sapphire of Pandreda! You can see the gemstone (obviously magical) caged up in on the east side of area 5.
Again presented with a list of suggestions, this student opted for an island location and the corridors and chambers sprawl in an improbable but intriguing cluster among the waves (though I can't say whether this is a lake or the sea).
A linear, console gaming sensibilities are clear here: get the key to open the cage to get the other key to open the chest ... all leading toward the boss-fight, but notice that if explorers take the middle tunnel it appears that they can go directly to confront the albino apes and locate the sapphire in their first encounter! Getting the locked cage containing the magic gem open may be another matter of course, and require some backtracking ... but who can say?
I'm intrigued by the three mysterious objects hidden in room 2. Why are they kept there and who placed them? What, if anything, are they used for?
Finally, what's the deal with bow and spear in area 5? Are they wielded by extraordinarily intelligent apes? Are they trophies, or do they just happen to be lying about? Why do the apes tolerate a trough of fire and what waits inside the unlocked chest that rests so near the sapphire ... nothing good I'm betting!
This nine-weeks I plan to divide my kids up a bit, encouraging those with experience as players to try their hand at setting design and the GM role. I'm excited to see what they'll produce!