Dungeon Waymarks 1 – Reavers & Thieves

"Now, lookit that! Someone else 'as been down this way before us!
Now, let's see... that round one was "go this way" ...
and the one with the crosses is "traps", I think... or was it "secret doors"...
... an' I don't think I've seen the one with the swords before, but it's probably not good.
You know what, you go first. I'm sure it's safe."
Sarah Shovelhand, the Thief Who Lived

Some of you may remember that I’m a cultural anthropologist by training, and consequently all types of symbols and symbology are close to my heart and interests. I’ve always found the hobo signs of the early 19th century really interesting (there’s a decent article here, should you want to read more), and I’ve been lead to believe that various commando teams use similar covert markings during operations even today.

Consequently, I’ve been trying to figure out a way to use this sort of a simplified language as part of a dungeon adventure at some point in the future, or maybe even integrating it as a sort of a campaign feature for a mega dungeon project. This article is the first stab at such a symbolic system, and is mainly directed at Judges and GMs needing this kind of a tool for whatever they’re doing in their own games.

As the headline states, this is part 1 of a series: I’m also working on a similar piece for arcane symbols in the same vein; it’ll come out next week.