Dungeonbowl Dungeons


Expanded rules and hobby ideas for the board game of dungeon fantasy football

Dungeonbowl Dungeons

Once you know the rules for Blood Bowl and Dungeonbowl, and have a collection of minatures and tokens handy, you only need one more thing to start playing - a dungeon.

Unlike Blood Bowl, Dungeonbowl doesn't have a fixed game board to play on. Instead, the players set up a game board in any mutually agreed fashion. The board has to have squares in the same way as a Blood Bowl pitch does, but the floorplansand map layout can be set up in any way you want - the only limit is your imagination.

When you decide to obtain a dungeon to play Dungeonbowl in, the first thing to decide is whether you want to go with a pre-made one, or make one yourself. These options are discussed in detail below.

Pre-made dungeons

If you bought a copy of the original 1989 Dungeonbowl, the box would include six dungeon tiles, plus two end zone tiles. Each tile was 8x12 squares in size, with a mix of wall squares and open squares. To make a dungeon, you just connect the six central tiles in some way, you put the end zones at either end, and the dungeon would be ready. The rulebook suggested a couple of different floorplan layouts, the two first suggestions shown in the illustration below.

This is obviously the fastest and easiest way to get started with playing. As an alternative to using the original floorplans, you can use any other type of dungeon tiles that are designed to be used with 28mm miniatures. Warhammer Quest and Advanced Heroquest are two older GW games that use dungeon floorplans that are ideal for Dungeonbowl, and the 1998 Dungeonbowl article specifically suggests using Warhammer Quest floorplans to play Dungeonbowl with.

Warhammer Quest was re-released in 2016 as Warhammer Quest: Silver Tower, the floorplans for which can also easily be used for Dungeonbowl. 

It it also possible to use a non-modular dungeon as a pre-made dungeon for Dungeonbowl. The original Heroquest game has a non-modular board of passages and rooms, and all this board would require to be suitable for Dungeonbowl is the addition of doors to access the rooms, and some way to indicate which tiles on the board are the end zones for each team. The only problem with this board is the long single-tile passages, which can be a bit too restrictive for comfort for maneuvering in Dungeonbowl. The Heroquest board is shown below.

Homemade dungeons

Rather than using a dungeon board or tiles that already exist, you always have the option of making your own. This requires nothing more than some cardboard, some glue, some scissors, and some creativity and time if you want them to look pretty.

One question, which is also relevant for using modular dungeon tiles even if they are pre-made, is how big your dungeon should be. There is no simple answer for this, because small or big can both be good and make for fun games. But a good size to aim for as a starting point, in my opinion, is approximately the same size as a normal Blood Bowl pitch, just divided up into dungeon rooms and passages. A Blood Bowl pitch is 16x26 squares, which makes 416, so about 400 or so squares is a normal-sized dungeon in my view. The Heroquest board above is a little bigger than that at 494 squares, 19x26.

Below is an example of what the homemade tiles made for DB:AGE look like.

The tiles are simply made out of cut cardboard, brown for the ground layer and then light and dark grey for the individual squares that the tiles consist of glued on top. I later added a more sturdy layer of cardboard beneath the brown for extra strength. I also ended up lightly drybrushing the grey squares with white, to give them a bit of texture.

The tiles are a mix of passages that are 3x4 squares, and rooms that are 5x6 squares or larger. Once you have larger tiles, you can make them in interesting shapes and sizes. All that matters is that the squares are aligned so models can move around on them comfortably. Below is an example of a round room, inspired by a room from Advanced Heroquest, where you can still easily tell where all the squares that models can stand on are supposed to be.

Last updated in March 2018