Click on the name of a move below to view the move card, Click the Full Details link to see the full details on a move.
Whenever everyone looks to you to see what happens choose one of these. Each move is something that occurs in the fiction of the game; they aren't code words or special terms.
Deal damageFull Details
When you deal damage, choose one source of damage that's fictionally threatening a character and apply it. In combat with a lizard man? It stabs you. Triggered a trap? Rocks fall on you.
The amount of damage is decided by the source. In some cases, this move might involve trading damage both ways, with the character also dealing damage.
Most damage is based on a die roll. When a player takes damage, tell them what to roll. You never need to touch the dice. If the player is too cowardly to find out their own fate, they can ask another player to roll for them.
Use up their resourcesFull Details
Surviving in a dungeon, or anywhere dangerous, often comes down to supplies. With this move, something happens to use up some resource: weapons, armor, healing, ongoing spells. You don’t always have to use it up permanently. A sword might just be flung to the other side of the room, not shattered.
Turn Their Move Back On ThemFull Details
Think about the benefits a move might grant a character and turn them around in a negative way. Alternately, grant the same advantage to someone who has it out for the characters. If Ivy has learned of Duke Horst’s men approaching from the east, maybe a scout has spotted her, too.
Separate ThemFull Details
There are few things worse than being in the middle of a raging battle with blood-thirsty owlbears on all sides—one of those things is being in the middle of that battle with no one at your back.
Separating the characters can mean anything from being pushed apart in the heat of battle to being teleported to the far end of the dungeon. Whatever way it occurs, it’s bound to cause problems.
Give an opportunity that fits a class' abilitFull Details
The thief disables traps, sneaks, and picks locks. The cleric deals with the divine and the dead. Every class has things that they shine at—present an opportunity that plays to what one class shines at.
It doesn’t have to be a class that’s in play right now though. Sometimes a locked door stands between you and treasure and there’s no thief in sight. This is an invitation for invention, bargaining, and creativity. If all you’ve got is a bloody axe doesn’t every problem look like a skull?
Offer an opportunity, with or without costFull Details
Show them something they want: riches, power, glory. If you want, you can associate some cost with it too, of course.
Remember to lead with the fiction. You don’t say, “This area isn’t dangerous so you can make camp here, if you’re willing to take the time.” You make it a solid fictional thing and say, “Helferth’s blessings still hang around the shattered altar. It’s a nice safe spot, but the chanting from the ritual chamber is getting louder. What do you do?”
Tell them the requirements or consequences anFull Details
This move is particularly good when they want something that’s not covered by a move, or they’ve failed a move. They can do it, sure, but they’ll have to pay the price. Or, they can do it, but there will be consequences. Maybe they can swim through the shark-infested moat before being devoured, but they’ll need a distraction. Of course, this is made clear to the characters, not just the players: the sharks are in a starved frenzy, for example.
Use a monster, danger, or location moveFull Details
Every monster in an adventure has moves associated with it, as do many locations. A monster or location move is just a description of what that location or monster does, maybe “hurl someone away” or “bridge the planes.” If a player move (like hack and slash) says that a monster gets to make an attack, make an aggressive move with that monster.
The overarching dangers of the adventure also have moves associated with them. Use these moves to bring that danger into play, which may mean more monsters.