Last week on the GM’s Toolbox podcast we talked about creating the stats for a Smart House. However, when I sat down to actually build out the stat block I realized that what I was really creating was a dungeon. So Kamm (Kourtney) and I hopped on a call and we hacked together a one page dungeon that you can drop into your campaign!
A member of the party (or a beloved NPC) is trapped by the house and everyone else needs to journey through it, survive it’s malicious traps and abilities, and rescue their missing friend!
As the party moves through the house it does everything it can to trap and murder them. The party can destroy power nodes in each room to reveal the hidden door to the Safe Room where the house’s brain can then be destroyed (or reprogrammed).
Whenever the party enters a room the house takes an action (as detailed in the room description). If combat breaks out (such as in the kitchen or dining room) you can either have the house roll initiative, or treat it as a sentient lair and have it take actions on initiative 20.
The person who is trapped by the house can search the bedroom at which point they will find a floorplan to the house with the nodes outlined (see player handout) which can be used to help the party access the Safe Room.
If the party survives and manages to disable the house they have a sweet new base of operations! If you allow the party to reprogram (or charm) the House’s brain it could even be an ally, both defending itself and the party, as well as offering advice and comfort. You can also easily populate the house with valuable or magic items (whatever you deem appropriate for the party).
And that’s our Smart House! Check out Episode 8 of A GM’s Toolbox to see how we came up with the idea, and if you decide to run it let us know how it goes!