CAVE-INS AND COLLAPSES (CR 8)
Cave-ins and collapsing tunnels are extremely dangerous. Not only do dungeon explorers face the danger of being crushed by tons of falling
rock, even if they survive they may be buried beneath a pile of rubble or cut off from the only known exit. A cave-in buries anyone in the middle of the collapsing area, and then sliding debris damages anyone in the periphery of the collapse. A typical corridor
subject to a cave-in might have a bury zone with a 15-foot radius and a 10-foot-radius slide zone extending beyond the bury zone. A weakened ceiling can be spotted with a DC 20 Knowledge
(architecture and engineering) or DC 20 Craft
(stonemasonry) check. Remember that Craft
checks can be made untrained as Intelligence checks. A dwarf can make such a check if he simply passes within 10 feet of a weakened ceiling.
A weakened ceiling may collapse when subjected to a major impact or concussion. A character can cause a cave-in by destroying half the pillars holding the ceiling up.
Characters in the bury zone of a cave-in take 8d6 points of damage
, or half that amount if they make a DC 15 Reflex save. They are subsequently buried. Characters in the slide zone take 3d6 points of damage
, or no damage
at all if they make a DC 15 Reflex save. Characters in the slide zone who fail their saves are buried.
Characters take 1d6 points of nonlethal damage
per minute while buried. If such a character falls unconscious, he must make a DC 15 Constitution check. If it fails, he takes 1d6 points of lethal damage each minute thereafter until freed or dead.
Characters who aren't buried can dig out their friends. In 1 minute, using only her hands, a character can clear rocks and debris equal to five times her heavy load limit. The amount of loose stone that fills a 5-foot-by-5-foot area weighs one ton (2,000 pounds). Armed with an appropriate tool, such as a pick, crowbar, or shovel, a digger can clear loose stone twice as quickly as by hand. You may allow a buried character to free himself with a DC 25 Strength check.