Random Dungeon Generators

You know what they say. When you're tired of procedurally generated dungeons, you're tired of life.

Beginning with the game 'Rogue' in 1980, there is a long tradition of games which automatically generate their levels, in real-time, as the player enters each level. Rogue set the scene for a genre known (rather unimaginatively) as "Rogue-Likes", and their more general category: "Dungeon Crawlers".

There's a shorter, but no less proud, tradition of people creating interactive (or at the very least animated) articles on "random dungeon generation" and the closely related sport of "Maze Generation".

Here are five of the best:

And an extensive list of online generators themselves:

And, owing to the fact that no website can consider itself complete if it doesn't include a dungeon generator of its own, there is now a dungeon generator available at this very wiki! It creates ready-to-print maps, and lets you pick from 4 different themes:

Generate Dungeon*

* or Castle, or Forest, or SpaceBase!.

Dungeon = Maze + Rooms

Dungeons—it must be noted—differ from the related concept of "Mazes", because while Mazes consist solely of "passageways", Dungeons have Passageways and Rooms. Rooms have a number of door ways and (sometimes) door ways can be locked!

Dungeon = Maze + Rooms + Monsters + Treasure + Locks + Keys + Stairs

If you want to get right down to it, dungeons also have monsters in some of the room, treasure boxes (occasionally) and (if there are locks) they may have keys (possibly hidden in treasure boxes). They can also have stairs, which act as entry/exits, and note that the stairs do not strictly need to be on the edge of the dungeon, they can be anywhere inside the dungeon. (Thus, wall-following may not be a sufficient way to solve such a puzzle).

Screenshot from "Solomon's Keep" an excellent rogue-like dual-stick shooter for iOS

So here's three articles on the related topic of Maze Generation. The first one is by Mike Bostock, whose full name I imagine to be "The Amazing Mike Bostock" as that is how I always pronounce it. And Jamis Buck who literally wrote the book on maze generation.

The beautiful thing about dungeon generation is that it's one of the purest algorithmic problems you can encounter. And yet it's such a fun, visually spectacular and entirely-playable pursuit. So dungeon generation is a fantastic topic for trying out a new language, or learning programming itself.

And the complexity of a solution can steadily ramp up from the entirely hand-drawn to the entirely generated. You can follow a smooth progression from manual to automated, with many detours, challenges and treasures along the way. Not unlike playing a dungeon crawling game itself.

One step up from hand-drawn is to create your own "geomorphs", in the style of Dyson Logos.

Geomorphs:
The Geomorphs of Dyson Logos (and others)

"Geomorphs" are small tiles which fit together with other tiles.

Path Finding

The related field of "Path finding" should also be linked from here.

The related field of city generation and world generation can be covered in separate articles.

Dungeon Game Name Generating

A related (though entirely different) field, is the automated generation of names for dungeon related games.

e.g:

  • Epic Dungeon Quest of the Loot Raider
  • Epic Loot Quest of the Dungeon Raider
  • Epic Quest to Loot Dungeons
  • The Epic Quest for Dungeon Loot
  • Epic Dungeon Raiding Quest of the Loot Raider
  • Raiders of the Epic Dungeon Loot
  • The Golden Dungeon
  • Epic Quest to Loot the Golden Dungeon
  • Epic Raid of the Golden Dungeon

List of Lists of Dungeon Generators

List of Dungeon Generators

External Links

Second Class External Links

Planned

See Also