Wednesday, 3 February 2016

The Hatred of Heat

If you lived deep inside a glacier, far from the light of day and the warmth of the sun, you would hate heat. Its very existence would threaten your home, your habitat, your environment, your belongings, the resources on which you rely. Even the tiny flame of a torch, which could have no effect on the ancient ice down there, would symbolise the power which warmth has over cold. You would want it extinguished, stamped out. You would see its invasion into your home as an affront. And you would want to eject or kill any warm-blooded intruders from the surface who might bring the threat of heat into your frozen world.

This is the mentality of intelligent beings in the depths of a glacier dungeon.


  1. The denizens will be equally at home in light or darkness.

    Check out photos of glacial caves sometime. Light bends and bounces around the ice giving a diffuse glow to caves hundreds of feet below the surface. This means that the denizens of the cave suffer no ill effects from light, and do not fear it.

    If the glacier is near the poles (and your fantasy world has those) then half the year the caves will be plunged into darkness. The residents may be perfectly adapted to see in the dark, and then your light source won't even be blocked by intervening walls. If they don't have that ability, they will possess cold light sources - perhaps a bio luminescent glacier algae or lichen. It will cast a pale green or bluish glow that looks nothing like a warm torch or lantern.

    But a drift of snow, patch of heavy dust trapped in the ice, or something unseen above can create a patch of darkness anywhere the DM desires.

    1. I was thinking more like miles below the surface than hundreds of feet (I have been thinking for a long time about a glacier dungeon that basically goes all the way down to hell) but thanks for this comment - it gives me a lot of really cool ideas.