D&D 5E Dungeon Difficulty: post your dungeon stats

This thread is for collecting summary data on how people design their dungeons. Please post a brief description of your dungeon's intended "level range", if any, how many PCs it's for, how many sessions you expect it to last, and a list of the total monsters, traps, and treasure that are in it. If you know the expected value of the total "adventuring day", please list that too.

Archer's Tower, intended for 3-4 PCs of levels 2-3 over 1-2 sessions
3 CR 1/8 Slaad Tadpoles (150 XP)
1 CR 1/4 Mud Mephit
1 CR 1/2 Magma Mephit
1 CR 1/2 Ice Mephit
1 CR 1/2 Dust Mephit (700 XP for all four mephits)
1 CR 6 Medusa
1 CR 3 Basilisk (4500 XP for Medusa + Basilisk)
1 CR 2 Mimic (450 XP)
1 CR 10 Stone Golem (5900 XP)
1 pit trap + illusions, 2d6 falling +2d8 piercing +2d8 poison to one or two chars (CR 3 trap gremlin, 700 XP), fall to lower level
1 bucket of instant glue balanced above a door (CR 1/4 trap gremlin, 50 XP)
280 lb. (6000 gp) of rare books
1 magical King's Scales (20 lb., bulky, 10,000 gp value)
1 magical Scale Mail of Silence (35 lb., no disadvantage on Stealth + mobile 5' silence effect when attuned, est. 2000 gp value)
Complete set of miniature busts of Archer and his siblings, 2000 years old, carved from dragon tooth ivory (worth 50K to 150K gp value as a matched set, if a buyer can be found)
Magical hammer of crushing (treat as club), double damage against constructs (2 lb, 5000 gp value)

Total monsters: 12,450 adjusted XP of difficulty (10,525 raw XP earned)
Total treasure: potential 337 lb. of treasure worth 23,000 gp plus 50K-150K gp of rare art objects (I expect players to find 30-50% of the treasure)
[Edit: note on treasure, this is for a campaign where XP-for-gold-spent at a 1:1 ratio is a thing, and XP requirements to level up are 10x normal]
Adventuring day: 4 3rd level PCs is 4800 XP, so likely about 300% of an adventuring day for typical PC group.

What does your latest dungeon look like?
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What does your latest dungeon look like?
Rappan Athuk, converted on the fly by using nearest 5e monster to the monsters described in the adventure text (Swords & Wizardry version), such as a hydra being a hydra, a troll a troll, but a pestelinzi demon is a chasme instead. Nearest possible treasures too.

Run for 3 characters that began as 4th level heading down the river to search out the dungeon.

Total Monsters: No way I'm going through nearly 500 pages and tallying; but a memorable recent encounter was the three characters, now 8th level, against 5 wights (a deadly encounter by DMG guidelines, that also did nearly kill one of the party - the barbarian, actually). And if they make it far enough, the party will face Orcus at the end.
Total Treasure: So very much. The party has already commissioned the building of a castle, and still has many barrels full of gold coins stashed away in the river that they have no immediate idea how to spend.
Adventuring Day: They've spent the last week in the dungeon, pushing on as much as they can each day while holding a small reserve of their resources to protect them during rest. I don't strictly measure, but that encounter with the 5 wights marked the end of the day for them after having cleared at least 10 other rooms on the dungeon level above.


My Runelords of the Shattered Star group are in the Lady's Light dungeon. I'd say my 5e conversion is for 6 PCs of levels 4-6, and I'm thinking 8-12 ca 4 hour sessions; we've had 3 so far but they only entered the actual dungeon last session. No way am I listing every monster in the dungeon, but the fights last session were:

3 CR 3 giant solifiguds (as giant scorpion)
4 CR 5 Caryatid golems (too tough to beat, after a brutal beatdown the PCs retreated then worked out how to get past them)
4 Bullywugs, non-standard - I'd say 1 CR 1/2, 2 CR 1, 1 CR 3. The Bullywug leader had a +1 longbow and a +1 troglodyte-bane arrow, +3d6 vs reptilian humanoids.

Plus much exploration, and one PC killed by a level 9 Phantasmal Killer spell trap... They earned around 2250 XP each, about twice the highest previous award. It's now around 3.30pm and I reckon they are currently about 2/3 through their Adventuring Day.


First Post
Temple of Elemental Evil plus some side quests beforehand. Again, I'll be b*gg*r*d if I'm listing all the monsters in there, but over the last few sessions, they have encountered:

1 off CR1 Snake (dealt with by the Druid doing Animal Handling on it, so it now won't attack)
10 off CR 1/2 Skeletons (most of whom exploded the minute that the Cleric of Sotillion pointed his Holy Symbol at them)
6 off CR2 Gnoll Skeletons, four of whom were Turned by the Cleric and remain at large in the vicinity
12 off CR 1/2 Guards plus 2 off CR5 leaders - combat occurred by a 20' deep pit trap (filling with water) into which the Druid had fallen, with half the guard contingent sneaking up on the party whilst they were rescuing their comrade - the warlock's Hunger of Hadar accounted for the majority of those troops, whilst the rogue managed to duel with their leader
1 off Ogre Leader CR4, 10 off CR 1/2 Gnolls (one a level 1 caster) and 1 off CR 1 bugbear armed with a four-bolt heavy crossbow (all of which managed to miss the Battlemaster as he closed range).

They are Long Resting after that last encounter, and have a number of new passageways to head down.

I'm mostly converting monsters and troops in the Temple like-for-like to 5th Edition (where the creatures exist), and - as my Players are now Level 6 and a bit overpowered for the dungeon - upping the CR of the bad guys as and when, using templates which can adjust defensively (AC and HP up), offensively (attack bonus and damage up) or a mixture of both, and it seems to be making the fights closer. Lots of opponents maximises the chances of them hitting (the Ogre was well down on HP before he was able to summon aid), and makes the battles feel more deadly (even if they aren't).


41st lv DM
Hmm. This will be a 5e conversion of part of DCC #11: The Dragonfiend Pact with story modifications.
The party (4 barbarians - 2 1/2orcs, 1 dwarf, 1 winged elf, all 2nd lv) is going to be shrunk down to 3 3/4" tall & sent into a maze of rat/vermin tunnels beneath the inn they're at.
I imagine I'm going to decrease their damage, increase the foes HPs/AC/Damage, or such to represent them being below tiny size while facing "normal" sized vermin. The point is to have normal sized vermin actually be a threat to people who're only 3" tall. I haven't decided just how yet, but I've got 9.5 days left.:)

Creatures to be used:
1 badger
16 rats
1 cave trout
2+? giant ants
1 choker
1 puedo-dragon

Cross 1 "river"
Cross 1 chasm
avoid a collapsing tunnel (added),
and scale a cliff or two (added)
I might also add in some sort of mold/fungus/etc

Information - the party is sent into the tunnels to seek out the pseudo-dragons advice/scrying. Assuming they survive & stick to the plan they'll get this.
Maybe 100gp worth of misc trinkets?
MAYBE the hoard of a tiny dragon if they betray "Scales" & survive? Most notably a crystal ball & about 1k mixed coin - of course getting these things OUT (without destroying the inn) would be a real challenge.

XP: 1 milestone towards becoming 3rd lv.


Enemy of the State
PCs: five PCs, levels 4 - 7 (not sure which character each player is taking, but expect most of them to be 5th or 6th level)
Dungeon location: The Warlock's Crypt in the Troll Hills on the Sword Coast
Dungeon purpose: Igglwilv (of Greyhawk fame) hid some of her spellbooks, treasure and information about the Demonomicon here. The PCs have been hired by a gold dragon to find more information about the Demononicon to use against the demon lords invading the Underdark (Out of the Abyss).

I'm using this excellent map I found when I did GIS for "warlock's crypt map."

1. Entry Chamber: two magic mouth spells and a programmed image of a fireball (8d6 fire damage; DC 20 half damage).

2. Igglwilv's statue: magic mouth spell and programmed image of a fireball (8d6 fire damage; DC 20 half damage).

3. Insane vrock - fights to the death trying to take as many PCs as possible back to the Abyss with him

4. 2 trapped shadow demons: will use rubble for cover and hiding to trick the PCs into believing there's only one demon in the room. Will make a break for it to escape given the chance.

5. Uncontrolled shield guardian: orders to destroy any intruders. If the PCs find the treasury before coming to this room they may have the amulet to control this creature and avoid a fight (and get a shield guardian as treasure).

6. False library has three glyphs of warding (DC 18, 5d8 damage; one each of acid, lightning and thunder) casts on three different books.

7. Two banshees wander about this huge dining hall. They will invite the PCs to take their seats and have dinner. If the PCs go along with the charade the banshees will mimic serving a multicourse meal over a 30 minute period and then vanish. If not they will wail and attack.

8. [as yet undetermined encounter]

9. [as yet undetermined encounter]

10. Suggestion spell (DC 20) targets the first creature entering the room: remove all clothing, weapons, armor and gear and open the nearby door (into room 11).

11. Two wraiths rest in coffins and will attack when anyone enters the room. Small crawl space passages connect from inside the coffins to other rooms in the dungeon.

12. Three basilisks wander this hallway littered with statues.

13. Two suits of animated armor, 2 rugs of smothers and 4 flying swords in this armory attack any who enter.

14. Eight shadows wander this tunnels working to protect entry to area 16. Guards and wards fog covers this area.

15. Eight shadows wander this tunnels working to protect entry to area 16. Guards and wards fog covers this area.

16. Area protected by Guards and Wards spell (DC 20). Minor illusion covers the door to room 18. Suggestion effect compels people approaching the door to leave the crypt by the shortest available route. Gust of wind from room 18 when door opened. Stinking clouds obscure the approaches to this area (bordering areas 14 and 15 above).

17. Eight shadows wander this tunnels working to protect entry to area 16. Guards and wards fog covers this area.

18. Final guardian: a glabrezu awaits the unwary (probably hears nearby combat). Uses darkness before party enters if possible. Power word stun on first person entering the room.

19. Flameskulls rest in each of the three crypts in this room. A suggestion spell on the door to room 18 compels anyone who touches the door to room 18. Compulsion: open one of the crypts.

20. Eight shadows wander this tunnels working to protect entry to area 16. Guards and wards fog covers this area.

21. [as yet undetermined encounter]

22. [as yet undetermined encounter including an acid pool and secret passages into shadow tunnels above]

23. Two vampire spawn rest in the coffins. Attack on entry. If this room bypassed on the way to the treasury the vampires will attack anyone leaving the treasury.

24. Treasure hoard: undetermined right now, but will include information about the Demonomicon and map to the Lost Caverns of Tsojcanth.

Expected game time: 2 sessions of ~6 hour each; probably includes one exit and long rest in the wilderness during the break between sessions.

Drider Enclave; 4 PCs level 8; likely 1 session

2 Driders (CR 6) [Hard encounter]
8 Giant Spiders (CR 2) + Drider (CR 6) [Hard/Deadly encounter]
3 Driders (CR 6) [Deadly encounter]
1 Drow mage (CR 7)+ Drider (CR 6) [Hard encounter]
6 Piercers (CR 1/2) [Very Easy encounter]
1 Hydra (CR 8) [Medium encounter]

Treasure: 2,800 gp, 600 gp worth of assorted gems; potion of hill giant strength
Experience: ~25K awarded; ~40k adjusted (expected adventuring day of 24K xp)


Just finished detailing my expansion of Devilish Demands from Rise of Tiamat:
Party: 6 characters, ~level 8
Duration: <1 session
Opposition: (assuming they fight everything)
Advanced Bone Devil (CR 11), 4x Veteran (CR 3), 2x Cultist (CR 1/8), Cult Fanatic (CR 2); 10500 XP
1 Trap (CR 3); 700 XP
3x Trap (CR 5); 5400 XP
3x Trap (CR 10); 17700 XP

Thresholds for CR 8 party: Easy 2700, Medium: 5400; Hard 8400; Deadly 12600
So that breaks down to Hard, Trivial, Medium, Deadly.
The thread as a whole is 34300 XP, or a little less than 3X Deadly, over 4 encounters.

Note that I expect/hope the character will only encounter the middle 2 encounters - 6100 XP, or solidly in the middle. The CR 10 Traps are deadlier than you might think (20d10 damage over two types, save for half), and if the characters are stupid enough to trigger them, multiple character deaths are likely.

This is what I would consider an easy run, roughly a quarter of the adventuring day.

Note that I expect/hope the character will only encounter the middle 2 encounters - 6100 XP, or solidly in the middle. The CR 10 Traps are deadlier than you might think (20d10 damage over two types, save for half), and if the characters are stupid enough to trigger them, multiple character deaths are likely.

Out of interest: are you using the DMG quick create tables to estimate trap CR, or some other method?

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