In our tags, we have for working on the sweeping project of the entire campaign world. We also have for small-scale encounters.

Creating a city made of illusion that won't be quickly figured out has been giving me some trouble edit-wise, because it needs a tag that's in the middle of those — it's not the entire world and it's not just one encounter, it's a single location — and I've been sure we have one and trying to recall it.

Apparently it might be , which has a tag wiki of:

Questions about designing location-based adventure environments, both above and below ground.

... "Dungeon design" is a terrible name for this though. Most environments we'll be working on aren't dungeons (even D&D is notorious for regularly featuring neither dungeons nor dragons). And the name "dungeon" as a metaphor only makes sense for a narrow selection of RPGs (D&D and its derivatives).

Can we produce a better name for this tag? I am not sure if [location-design] works, and not in a frame of mind to work out a tag name myself.

(I don't think we need a new tag, hence the proposal for a rename. We don't need one tag for location design of literal dungeons and another for non-dungeons, especially since they often use the same patterns anyway.)

What should it be called?

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    \$\begingroup\$ For any that missed out, we've already started this discussion in chat \$\endgroup\$
    – Ben
    Commented Jul 8, 2015 at 1:35
  • \$\begingroup\$ Proactive generation of tags is always a no-no by the way. If there is a specific new question that needs a *-design tag that doesn't exist like city-design the poster's free to make one - but tags here are a folksonomy (emergent) not a taxonomy (carefully planned out by us). In general tags should be left alone unless there's a real problem emerging. \$\endgroup\$
    – mxyzplk
    Commented Jul 9, 2015 at 13:31
  • \$\begingroup\$ @mxyzplk We have had multiple other questions about construction of large setpieces with long adventure lifetimes, so this is a reactive attempt to group that body of knowledge and make it relatively easily accessible. The surveillance state question wherein Brian produced the Cystarchy is the most notable example that comes to mind, others are somewhere among the archives out of easy reach. \$\endgroup\$ Commented Jul 9, 2015 at 13:36
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    \$\begingroup\$ My vote is for "Spooky-cave-design". \$\endgroup\$
    – Sandwich
    Commented Jul 20, 2015 at 6:55

2 Answers 2


serves a purpose, because (for better or worse) designing dungeons takes a very particular set of tools, skills, and knowledge that aren't generally applicable to designing any other types of location, unless you're already designing your dungeons in non-traditional ways that don't use those peculiar abilities. And despite the tag wiki's claim that the tag is more broad than its name, the questions it contains are pretty much about traditional dungeon-design issues.

The tag wiki should be tightened up to reflect usage, as (at least for this tag) there is no higher authority than its pattern of usage.

For other things that need designing, we should probably have another tag. It's okay if they overlap — we've got both and , to mention only one instance of tags overlapping, and that has been fine. I'd use [location-design], but I'm bad at naming things so take that with a few grains of salt. Or in other words, to the folksonomy mobile! Let's see what tag(s) get made.

  • \$\begingroup\$ I agree, if you want to design something else make a something-else-design tag. Dungeons are dungeons. \$\endgroup\$
    – mxyzplk
    Commented Jul 8, 2015 at 2:33
  • \$\begingroup\$ [location-design] is nice but it seems like it would by definition include dungeons since they are also locations. Perhaps [city-design]? \$\endgroup\$ Commented Jul 8, 2015 at 23:16
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    \$\begingroup\$ @Dyndrilliac I mentioned that: overlap isn't a problem in practice because the tags will get used in their distinctly useful ways. We have lots of examples: [npc ] and [villain], [dnd-5e] and [dungeons-and-dragons], [gm-techniques] and [pacing], [dnd-3.5e] and [prestige-class], and so on. Overlap is okay. \$\endgroup\$ Commented Jul 8, 2015 at 23:43
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    \$\begingroup\$ I'm creating the [city-design] tag and editing the tag wiki for [dungeon-design]. \$\endgroup\$ Commented Jul 9, 2015 at 3:58
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    \$\begingroup\$ I am accepting this answer as indicating that renaming dungeon-design is not a useful approach, and that we should indeed take to the folksonomy-mobile: we'll work out how to tag this stuff by diving in and editing and getting our hands greasy (to to speak), and it may not involve just one tag. \$\endgroup\$ Commented Jul 10, 2015 at 3:39

How about [episode-design], [event-design], [event-mapping] or [event-cluster-design] or something similar? Some of them are a little unwieldy but they fit what you're going for.

  • \$\begingroup\$ I've created the city design tag on the question for now. (Also the key is that it is not a single event, so much as a stage on which many events will take place, but not all of them.) \$\endgroup\$ Commented Jul 9, 2015 at 8:02
  • \$\begingroup\$ @doppelgreener Hence "episode". Nominally, a thematically and temporally linked set of events. \$\endgroup\$ Commented Jul 9, 2015 at 8:05

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