Fantasy Adventure Dungeon

Okay, you classic dungeon crawlers, this one’s for you! Grab your swords, spell books, holy symbols, and trap disabling tools and open the first door…

If you’re a game master or roleplaying game referee, then this page will give you some trigger words to create some cool dungeons and dungeon features. We’ve created this page with the fantasy roleplaying game world in mind.

Be sure to look at some of the other underground world menu items in the sidebar or type a keyword into one of the search bars to see what hits you get.

If you’re a writer, we’re sure you’ll still find this page useful and interesting ’cause it’s full of fun ideas! Check it out…

Types of Dungeons

  • castle, tower, fortress, citadel, keep, bailey, court, palace,
  • mansion, plantation, manor,
  • basement, cellar, storage, wine cellar,
  • subterranean city,
  • sub-city sewer, transportation system, utility tunnels, catacombs, security or defense network,
  • burrow, den, lair, warren, roost, habitat,
  • nest, hive, hill,
  • guild hall, wizard’s guild, thieves guild,
  • bandits hideout, assassin’s den, nefarious underground world, crime syndicate network, thieves’ secret passages,
  • orc den, goblin infestation, realm of the lizard king, eaglelord’s aerie, breeding ground of giant bugs, more MONSTERS here, bat roost, harpy loft,
  • sacked dwarf empire, dark elf domain, hill gnome home,
  • temple, shrine, holy site, ritual altar housing, cathedral substructure,
  • escape tunnel, secret route,
  • guerrilla tunnel network, cradle of rebels, terrorist maze,
  • bootlegger’s stashhouse, getaway,
  • blackmarket, clandestine trade network, grotto of the slavelord, opium den, drug flophouse,
  • gateway to the underworld, passage “beyond,” path to Hell,
  • built into a cliff, mountain pass, hillside, ravine, abyssal drop, mountain peak, hillock, kame,
  • holes in a mound, rubble pile, slag heap, barrow mound,
  • ghetto, slum, rookery, squatter’s town,
  • dugout, hollow, hole,
  • cove, bay, coastal cliff system,
  • wizard-created test facility, challenge arena, fantasy-world version of a “gameshow”,
  • military bunker, sapper’s trench and tunnel system, foxhole,
  • caldera, volcano (active, dormant, or extinct), vent, geyser,
  • asteroid crater, crashed meteor site, crashed extraterrestrial (or magical) ship,
  • blast hole, demolition, bomb crater, wizard battle site of utter destruction,
  • underground society fleeing surface apocalypse, disease, pestilence, destruction, wrath of the gods,
  • post-apocalyptic terrain ripped and torn creating subterranean pockets; crust of the earth destroyed by an angry superbeing or god, cosmic event changes earth’s surface,
  • vegetation dungeon made up of vines, brambles, thorns, thickets, bush; composed of forest floor, understory, canopy, emergent layer, and a subterranean layer

Dungeon Entrances

  • great oak slab, solid wood door, see here for more doors
  • portcullis, cage, iron bars, mesh, gate, ironwork,
  • sewer grate, manhole, drainage channel,
  • boarded up door, cordoned off area, restricted entrance, fenced entry,
  • secret door, hidden panel, movable bookcase,
  • magical portal, teleporter, wish spell, ethereal travel, wormhole, magic gate,
  • trapped, sloped, wet, slimy, infested, dingy, musty, dank, fetid, littered, dusty, cool, warm, smoky, steamy, acrid,
  • vestibule, entryway, drawing room, anteroom,
  • welcome desk, check-in counter, guardian’s post, sentinel’s post, gatekeeper, ferryman at riverside, waiting room, post, toll,
  • slide, chute, slope, ramp,
  • stairs, steps, raised dais, platform, landing,
  • bridge, ferry, crossing, boardwalk,

Dungeon Passages

  • hall, long chamber,
  • lane, path,
  • burrow, hollow, dugout,
  • channel,
  • underground riverbed,
  • lava tube, chute,
  • excavated tunnel, reinforced shaft, dug pit,
  • painted, lined, mortared, carved walls, ornamented walls,
  • post and lintel hall, marble hall,
  • colonnade, columns,
  • vent, chimney,
  • miles wide cavern with roads and tolls placed by rulers of the underground kingdom,
  • structured network of a nest, hive, hill, den, burrow,
  • labyrinth, maze,

Dungeon Room Shapes and Sizes

  • gigantic chamber, high ceiling,
  • long, extended, lengthy, stretched,
  • circular, spherical, egg shaped, oval, oblong,
  • bulbous,
  • knotted, twisted, contorted, distorted, misshapen,
  • angular, square, clean-shaped, measured, cut, rectangular,
  • triangular, polygonal, star-shaped, pointy,
  • many alcoves, nooks, nodules, closets, insets, offsets,

Dungeon Room Purposes

  • farm of fungi, mushrooms, moss, glow worms, vines,
  • torture chamber, literally a dungeon, oubliette, cell,
  • chamber, hall, arena,
  • royal chamber,
  • temple, prayer room, shrine,
  • burial site, catacomb, tomb, vault,
  • treasury,
  • armory,
  • barracks, bedding, bunkhouse, quarters,
  • slave quarters, servants’ chamber,
  • latrine pit, washroom, toilet,
  • kitchen, cookspace, abbatoir, slaughterhouse,

Dungeon Features

  • stalactites, stalagmites, soda straws, pillars, columns, (for more ideas go to Natural Caves)
  • floor made of columns rising from an abyss joined by precarious natural bridges,
  • many passages, networked,
  • underground river, stream, channel, lake, pool,
  • spring, fountain, geyser, steam vent,

Stuff to Find in a Fantasy Adventure Dungeon…

Here are a bunch of categories with some expanded trigger words and ideas and lots of links to pages and posts that explore some specific ideas more deeply.

Monsters and other Characters
  • see the Monsters full page here for more ideas.
  • kobolds, little lizard people, gnatmen, chameleon brain-sucker, giant leaping lizard, snakewoman,
  • insect swarms, wasp nests, giant ant hill, giant centipede devourers, spider infestation, massive mother spider, halfbeetle-halfman aberration, giant bug,
  • doppleganger, shapeshifter, werewolf, werebear, werevulture,
  • humanoids: orcs, goblins, bugbears,
  • hag,
  • dragon, hydra, gargantuan serpent,
  • bandit, pirate, ruffian, thug, brigand, rebels,


  • money, gold, coins, bills,
  • artifact, relic, idol, antique, legendary sword, fabled scroll,
  • scroll, book, plans, map,
  • weapons, armour, ammo, ancient sword, poisoned arrows, sacred dagger,
  • art, painting, tapestry, statue, sculpture, drawing, clay piece,
  • gem, jewels, precious stones,
  • healing potion, first aid kit, antidote,
  • person, hostage, human asset, the prince or princess,
  • monster, pet, animal, steed, familiar, magical beast,
  • remains, corpse, mummy, skeleton, a head,
  • magical items, spell book, crystal ball, magic staff, flying carpet, ring of three wishes, magic lamp, invisibility cloak, boots of quickness, levitation amulet, talisman of protection, healing scroll,
  • something strange, skull, dragon’s egg, key,
  • meaningful stuff, letters, sentimental things, mementos,
  • trapped treasure! (see below or go to a whole page on TRAPS here)


  • pit covers the passage width, spiked pit. sloping pit,
  • concealed chute in the floor whisking characters to another location
  • magical portal trap,
  • swarm released,
  • poison darts, pins, arrows, bolts, vines, walls,
  • gas, mist, vapour, aerosol infection, toxic air,
  • diseased corpse highly contagious,
  • we have a whole page on traps here.

Notes and Ideas

  • the number of passages in and out of your dungeon chambers will depend on many factors: purpose, overall design of the structure, natural vs. manufactured, obvious exits vs disguised exits,
  • consider the creatures inhabiting your dungeon: how’d they get in, what do they live on, where do they pee, are they alone or is there a family structure,


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