GameJoy: D&D DM Screen: Dungeon Kit Impressions

A week ago we received the D&D Dungeon Master’s Screen: Dungeon Kit for review. This is the sister product to last year’s DM Screen: Wilderness Kit, and contains a lot of the same tools and cards, but this time suited to dungeon exploration.

Inside the kit is a cardstock card box as well as cardstock initiative tracking cards, condition cards, dungeon geomorph cards, and a laminated cardstock dungeon grid page with combat rules on the back.

The dungeon geomorph cards provide 36 dungeon cards, each with anywhere from half a dozen to ten dungeon rooms, all of which can be linked together to create a whole dungeon. I think it’s a really clever way of creating a dungeon complex quickly. My only complaint is the design of the geomorph rooms themselves: I feel like a lot of them are a little too busy and complex in their design, making them more difficult to map out traditionally using DM description and players drawing a map. Lots of circular passageways and multifaceted chambers are tough to convey with just words, especially for new DM’s.

If the cards are drawn for the entire group to see, this immediately eliminates that problem though, so it all comes down to how you run your dungeon crawls.

The real star of the show is the DM screen itself. It’s designed much the same way the Wilderness Kit screen was; basic DM reminders and tools for tracking damage, conditions, distances, setting DC’s, and handy rules reminders.

This time around the extra info is dungeon specific: tables for describing the level of decay the dungeon area is in, creating random encounters and obstacles, and handling other dungeon threats. There’s also a handy price list guide, which is great for impromptu dungeon shopping.

The screen’s front panels feature some gorgeous landscape art that depicts different areas of a massive dungeon complex, complete with dragons, hook horrors, and gigantic mushrooms. It gives it all a very natural look that feels like an update of the classic 4e dungeon complex DM screen.

I think the DM screen just on its own is worth the price of admission for this product. The cards and geomorphs are a handy tool, but it’s really the screen itself that you want. I say check it out!