Dungeons of Lunaria

Hey! A blog post! I must be up to something, right? I sure am. I’ve begun and have gotten a significant amount of work done on a new video game called Dungeons of Lunaria. The game is playable by visiting dungeonsoflunaria.com although it won’t work properly on mobile.

The game is meant to be an adventure dungeon crawl style game, with procedural generated dungeons and monsters. You delve into the dungeon to find the dungeon orb, destroying monsters along the way. Once the orb is destroyed you’ll need to escape the dungeon, quickly, or die trying to find your way out.

Right now a majority of the planned features are still missing. I have some fun game-play coded, but there is a long way to go. Right now I have a placeholder map put in for the surface of the dungeon. It just has a campfire the read me sign and the entrance to the dungeon. I’m using free images from opengameart.com as a stand in until I can get my own images produced. It is possible to find some pretty high quality images for free on there, but it is my goal to have a unique consistent look for the game, but that is expensive and there is a lot of code for me to write before I think it’ll make sense to upgrade the look.

Once I flesh out the core features of the dungeon, I plan to work on creating a city builder above ground. Dungeon heroes will need someplace to spend all that gold they find in the dungeon below ground. They’ll be able to spend it upgrading their camp, which can eventually grow into a small town, and eventually perhaps a thriving metropolis. I’m not really sure how far I’ll take that. I like the idea, but as a solo dev it might take some time to create.

Making this game is going to take a lot of time. I so far have only spent a short amount of time each day working on the game in between my day job, taking care of the kids, and everything else I need to do before I can start on my hobbies. I’ve gotten pretty good however, at making the most out of short intervals of time. So keep checking back for more progress. Dungeonsoflunaria.com will always link to the newest version of the game and I will try to keep this blog updated with what’s new.


The skinchanger started out as my own take on the druid, but has gradually shifted towards being its own unique class. There are still a lot of similarities with the druid, but I’ve also tried to make the skinchanger stand out on its own. I created this class for my wife to use and she has really enjoyed it. It is still very much a work in progress, so please provide any constructive criticism in the comments below. The stats provided are intended for Old School Essentials by Necrotic Gnome, but it should be easy to adapt this class to the system of your choosing.

Requirements: None
Prime Requisite: WIS
Hit Dice: 1d4
Maximum Level: 14
Armor: Leather
Weapons: Club, sling, spear, staff
Languages: Common, the secret druidic tongue

The skinchanger is a type of druid who has learned the ability to transport their minds into and possess other creatures. These can be either animals or monsters, but not humanoids or other intelligent beings. Skinchangers’ bodies are generally very frail, and it is believed that nature has granted them the ability to skinchange in order to compensate.


Skinchanger Level Progression
Saving Throws Spells
Level XP HD THAC0 D W P B S 1 2 3 4 5
101d419 [0]11121416151
22,0002d419 [0]11121416152
34,0003d419 [0]111214161521
47,5004d419 [0]111214161522
512,5005d417 [+2]9101214122211
620,0006d417 [+2]91012141222211
735,0007d417 [+2]91012141233221
860,0008d417 [+2]91012141233322
990,0009d414 [+5]67911944332
10125,0009d4+1*14 [+5]67911944433
11200,0009d4+2*14 [+5]67911955443
12300,0009d4+3*14 [+5]67911955544
13750,0009d4+4*12 [+7]3578765554
141,500,0009d4+5*12 [+7]3578766555
* Modifiers from CON no longer apply. D: Death / poison;
W: Wands;
P: Paralysis / petrify;
B: Breath attacks;
S: Spells / rods / staves.


Like the druid, the skinchanger must be neutral in alignment.


Skinchangers may not use or wear anything metallic, as it interferes with their abilities. Since the skinchanger is able to control animals at will, they will more often choose to try to force their will on an animal or simple minded monster to defend them rather than join in combat themselves.

Divine Magic

Unlike druids, the skinchanger is not required to carry a holy symbol, but they do need to be faithful to the tenets of their alignment and religion. Their abilities are granted to them by nature and therefore they must not offend nature or incur penalties. The skinchanger does not gain spells through research, but through a process known as a “spirit walk”. A skinchanger can also use magic scrolls for spells on their spell list as well as items that may only be used by divine spell casters.


Skinchangers have the innate ability to transport their consciousness into animals which gives them control over that animal. While using this ability, the skinchanger’s body enters a state of torpor, to an observer they appear asleep. The skinchanger is completely unaware of anything happening to or around their own body unless they are observing through the senses of the animal they have taken control of. This ability can be used at will, but is not guaranteed success. Use the table below to determine success. If the skinchanger has failed to take control of an animal, then they are unable to attempt another skin change for 1 hour and may not attempt control of the same animal for 24 hours unless that animal is willing. Attempting to skin change to a willing animal always succeeds unless a failed attempt was made in the last hour. If the animal the druid is possessing dies, the druid immediately returns to their body and is shaken by the experience, unable to take any action for the next round. If the skinchanger’s body is killed, the skinchanger’s consciousness may remain within the possessed animal. If a skinchanger spends more than 24 hours within an animal, they will forget their humanity. Even if their mind is returned to their original body, they will behave as that animal would, although they will eventually regain their humanity over time. The length of time is up to the GM’s discretion and should be based on how long the skinchanger lived as an animal. This is true even if the skinchanger’s body is killed and and then resurrected. Any time spent within the body of an animal should have an effect on the skinchanger’s mind, affecting their behavior upon returning.

Skinchange Success table
-: The skinchange fails
Number: If the 2d6 turning roll is higher or equal, the skinchange attempt succeeds.
S: The skinchange succeeds

Creature Hit Dice†
1 7 9
2 S 7 11
3 S S 9 11
4 S S 7 9 11
5 S S S 7 9 11
6 S S S S 7 9 11
7 S S S S S 7 9
8 S S S S S S 7
9 S S S S S S S
10 S S S S S S S
11+ S S S S S S S

* monsters with a special ability
(i.e. with an asterisk next to their HD
rating, in the creature description) increase the level to roll against by 1. ex. 2* becomes 3, 5** becomes 7.
† At the referee’s option, the table may be
expanded to include more powerful
types of creatures.

Spirit Walk

A Spirit Walk occurs while the skinchanger is asleep and involuntarily skin changes into a nearby animal. During a spirit walk, skinchangers don’t have full control over the possessed animal as they would during a skin change. Unlike a skin change, they will also immediately return to their body if it is disturbed. The effect is more of a dream like state rather than a full voluntary possession. Skinchangers cannot willingly perform a spirit walk, they must be initiated by the GM and at the very least should occur every time the skinchanger gains a level. While possessing an animal during a spirit walk, the skinchanger can learn new spells, interesting lore, be alerted of danger to self or to the party, or anything else the GM deems important. GMs should try to describe the spirit walk in detail and include how the new information is learned. Skinchangers are aware that when they find themselves involuntarily possessing another creature they are about to learn something important. Common skinchanger lore is that while they may gain great control over nature, it is ultimately nature that controls them.

Animal Communication

A skinchanger cannot speak with animals in any language, howeer beginning at 3rd level, they are able to use their mental bond with an animal to communicate thoughts and emotions. The animal will not understand projected words, but the skinchanger can try to describe concepts by sending images and emotions telepathically.

Reaching 12th Level and Above

There can only be nine druids of 12th level, and since skinchangers are druids, this applies to them as well. When a skinchanger has enough experience to reach 12th level, they must challenge an existing 12th level druid. The character only advances to 12th level if the other druid is defeated. Such challenges may take any form that is agreed by both parties, including combat (which need not be fatal). Likewise, there can only be three druids of 13th level and a single druid (known as the arch-druid) of 14th level. Druids who attain 12th level or above may build a stronghold integrated into a natural setting.

Corpse Medicine

Grave robbing is a huge component of fantasy tabletop role playing games. Exploring ancient crypts, tombs, and catacombs are perhaps more fundamental to a game of Dungeons and Dragons than the dragons! The dungeons can be many things, but whatever they are, more often than not, they contain the dead. Typically, a gang of dungeoneering adventurers will loot the bodies and then leave them where they are. In this post, I want to provide incentive for characters to not only want to take the treasures entombed with the corpses, but the corpses as well!

I won’t go too much into the actual practice of corpse medicine, which was used in the 16th and 17th centuries. I have only done a modicum of research on the topic and from what I can tell, it was widely practiced at that time. There was also a certain logic to it that I think makes it easy to incorporate into the tabletop experience. The thought was that tinctures and potions made from the dead contained a bit of that person’s spirit, which imbued the remedy with it’s power. You would take ground up skull for a headache, or use blood to cure an ailment that effected the blood.[1] While we now know that most these “cures” don’t work, some of them actually do! [2] In a fantasy world with real spirits and magic, corpse medicine would certainly be an effective form of medicine, and one’s mortal remains could ask a high price!

The references below contain some fascinating inspiration, however, I believe it is simple to incorporate this morbid medicine into a game. Each part of the corpse is used in a cure corresponding to that particular part. So a hand would be used to cure an ailment on one’s hand, perhaps numbness or a rash. Intestines could be ground up and used to cure an ulcer or other stomach ailment. Furthermore, the bodies of demi-humans might also have different characteristics based on the characteristics often associated with those demi-humans. For example, the hand of an elf may grant extra potency in magic. The heart of a dwarf may grant a bonus to constitution or strength. Even a tincture made from the remains of a non-humanoid would possibly be of value, swiftness from the hooves of a unicorn, resistance to cold from the teeth of a yeti. Allow characters to take whatever remains they desire, and make some use of them. Use this simple logic to determine what the effect should be and grant it an efficacy based on the challenge of obtaining the ingredients. I also recommend that you are tracking encumbrance, dragging every single corpse the players find back to town should not be possible.

I’ll be incorporating this into my games, and if my players go for it I’ll hopefully have some great stories to tell about it in future posts. If you decide to implement corpse medicine into your campaign be sure to let me know in the comments how it goes!

[1]The Gruesome History of Eating Corpses as Medicine
[2]  New Morbid Terminology: Corpse Medicine
Mummies and the Usefulness of Death