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Old 09-21-2017, 06:51 PM   #1
Anthony
 
Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: Berkeley, CA
Default New Monster: Dungeon Demon

This idea came to me from another thread: perhaps dungeons are demons. I think it actually works pretty well:

Dungeon Demon

A dungeon demon is a peculiar form of extradimensional horror, not even recognized by most sages, but recent research has confirmed that it is a real, and growing, threat.

Unlike demons that possess animals or people, a dungeon demon possesses a space, such as a building or a cave. It is thought that they initially appear in a space that is abandoned for a long period and contains the unburied body of a sapient creature, possibly making it a form of ghost, but the details of its early life cycle are not well known. In any case, the primary nature of a dungeon demon is as a trap, similar to a pitcher plant: it contains attractive bait (typically ‘treasure’), and when people are attracted to the bait, it attempts to devour them, by generating internal antibodies (aka ‘monsters’ and ‘traps’). Success causes the demon to grow and generate more bait. Note that a dungeon demon is in fact a space, not a structure; it will first expand to fill the entirety of the structure in which it is found, and if it cannot expand further, it expands underground, creating tunnels and caverns. If a dungeon demon is truly killed, any expansion beyond its initial dimensions will gradually or rapidly cease to exist.

Despite its malign nature, dungeon demons are actually fairly inefficient predators; a significant fraction of people going into them will successfully escape with bait. This apparently serves two purposes. First, bait is more effective if its victims think they can successfully escape with it. Secondly, some part of treasure found within a dungeon is in fact seeds: while normally proper burial prevents formation of a dungeon, if a human is buried or interred with dungeon treasure, that burial place has a high probability of seeding a new dungeon (and, in fact, dungeon seeds can corrupt the living, turning them into monsters about which a dungeon forms).

Some individuals have experimented with farming of dungeon demons, feeding them corpses and retrieving the treasures this generates. On the short term, this does seem to work, but over the long term this inevitably corrupts the farmers, turning them into monsters.

Current theory is that the best way to kill a dungeon demon is to kill everything within and remove the corpses; dungeon demons are perfectly capable of devouring the dead bodies of its own monsters, though they will not grow by doing so and eventually starve if provided no additional food. Treasure should be removed and then burned or melted.
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