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A note from Yotro

Hope you enjoy the chapter!!

 

Chapter 1 – Building My First Layer

I started building the first defensive layer of my dungeon. To protect me against the dangers outside of my influence. With my "vast knowledge”, I created a plan for the first layer protecting me from any intruders.

Directly after the entrance tunnel, the first protection would be a system of tunnels and caves. I used the information I gained from the fox and mouse to finetune the environment to its future inhabitants.

The tunnels would provide a living place for various creatures. Insects would flourish in the slightly moist smaller tunnels with moss and stale water. Small animals, like mice, other rodents, or critters, would burrow into the soft ground or live in small tunnel complexes.

Caverns and rooms would provide the needed space for the foxes and larger creatures to live in. Finished with the terraforming of my first layer I took a look at my current situation.

Once an intruder entered my domain, which sadly couldn’t spread into the area beyond the entrance, they would be met with a long tunnel. After I pondered why I couldn’t spread beyond the cave entrance I realized that the airflow was exchanging my personal mana too fast.

Back to the first layer, the entrance tunnel would branch off into smaller side tunnels which created a labyrinth for my smaller creatures. The main tunnel would lead into 5 caverns with the largest one in the center.

Inhabiting my dungeon were creatures of various sizes and new ones I absorbed while building the first layer. The rodents were used as food for my foxes and bobcats. The cats I had just claimed ownership of lately.

That was my hardest fight up until now. The cats worked in a pack of 5 and would have defeated me. Luckily a snake, hanging in one of the trees, was able to shift the fight in my favor.

But these weren’t all of the creatures that visited my domain during terraforming. The process took quite a long time. So now tens of creatures lived inside my domain. Rabbits shared their burrows with rats and mice. Snakes slithered through the smallest tunnels and wound up and down trees.

The different predators build a primal ruling order. And on the top stood a surprising apex predator, a mouse. This creature was a very special one to me. It had developed a hunger for flesh while it feasted on my first intruder to ever enter my domain, the fox.

Its most favorite meal was the aforementioned race of foxes, this also showed in its fur. The Grey hairs had changed into a reddish-orange, coming from the blood and foxes it consumed.

One day when it had just defeated a rising alpha fox who challenged its rule, something happened. The mana inside the creature formed into a complex pattern and was infused throughout the mouse's body.

During the mouse’s evolution process an instinct informed me what it was all about. Evolving was an intricate part of nature that happens when a creature has absorbed enough mana. Its outcome is influenced by everything the creature does while it cultivates the necessary mana to undergo evolution and its intent, if intelligent enough.

Every tier is split into different steps marking average strength across the animal kingdom.
Weak, normal, and peak divided every tier and could be used to give a more detailed analysis.

Though the tiers were mostly an indicator of average strength they were not always all too accurate. This was because a creature got stronger in its cultivation to the next tier without the three subcategories changing all too much.

While few creatures were born with tier one and some even higher, most creatures started at tier 0. At this stage, the animal was at its starting stage of cultivation

After my little escapade into the tier system I went back to the mouse’s evolution When the savage mouse evolved, it transformed into a “red mouse”. It grew to double its previous size and got unnaturally stronger. Not only was it now larger and stronger but it was even more intelligent.

The mouse was now blood red and had an aura of rage around it. Its long claws and teeth were built for hunting. A prehensile tail with a spike at the end completed the powerful tier-1 creature.

Just after I had a look at it I got a little scared when I felt it revolt against my dominion.
But I instinctively knew that a beast that wasn’t a higher evolution than me wouldn’t be able to revolt against my control.

After the little shock from the revolt, I again looked through my domain. I had planted various plants to flesh out my ecosystem. They would provide the needed food and living space for different animals and critters. And also protect me against intruders through entanglement and poisons.

With the inhabitation of my dungeon with plants and animals, I also realized something that was missing. Normally light would be needed for the plants to photosynthesize but my dungeon made some other things possible. The dark environment slowly led my creatures and plants to change into variant species.

Together with a large amount of mana various changes began to happen. The snakes became darker, to fit into the shadows and the foxes developed a unique ability to stun their prey with a flash of their orange fur. The tree leaves turned black and synthesized my mana or lived off the glowing mosses’ light. This glow also brought some much-needed ambiance into my dungeon.

The transformations slowly stopped, finally stabilized, and fitted to their environment. The tunnel and cave system were now much more active than before. In a modestly dark environment flashes of light would brighten up the darkness. While others used the rare light to attract partners or lure in prey.

It looked spectacular, but I still had a problem to solve. The amount of water inside my domain was very scarce. The rare droplet of the stalactites or the small flow in the spring and after a heavy downfall was heavily fought over.

Every hint of moistness was guarded to death by the most powerful creatures and created a problem. But luckily towards the end of the transformation of my dungeon, I discovered a stream of water. The stream now made its way through the caverns, providing a new environment and much-needed water.

Apex predators could finally go around my domain and not guard their waterholes. And the small critters were able to get access to the before scarce resource. With the water came Marine life, especially fishes which now began to inhabit the small pond in the largest cavern.

They too adapted to the large environment and brought with them many new species and intruders. Horrendous angler-fish inhabited the deepest lakes and bright koi fish blinded their predators.

Once I finished observing and going through all that happened while terraforming my first layer something peculiar happened. I pondered this feeling when I suddenly noticed its similarity to something I had felt before. I sensed the same thing as in the mouse when It was about to evolve and now knew.

I was ready to evolve
-

Once I committed myself to evolution, I felt ideas form inside my mind. They informed me of what I was about to become. I analyzed the information I got.

Now, I could order my dungeon into different zones making management easier. The evolution would also turn me from a dungeon core into a zone dungeon.

Beforehand I just had my area of influence and could do what I wanted within. But now I could arrange different areas into zones and thus order my dungeon. The creatures would still be able to interact with each other. But now they would remain in their perfect habitat.

Having analyzed the information, I got started with my evolution. Slowly the mana inside my core formed an intricate pattern and I felt my mind become sluggish. Until I finally fell into a sleep-like state, with hope and excitement filling my crystal.

-

When I awoke, I was invigorated. The control I had over my influence had increased significantly. After looking at the changes, I noticed some more subtle things.

The small tunnel and room system I built looked more natural. The area was now my first zone. And everything had changed slightly to better fit my and the inhabitants’ needs. Natural-looking tunnels and organic rooms could be seen. Creating the perfect environment for the creatures living within.

Adding to that, a lot of information came with the evolution. I now knew more about my first zone’s natural inhabitants. This allowed me to create a better picture of my current situation. And it opened up new ways to improve my dungeon.

The added intelligence, wisdom, and clarity I got helped me even further. But I now also realized how weak and unprotected I was. I had to improve further and become even more powerful.

With the new information in mind and my raised power, I set myself up for a large expansion. I would increase the size and diversity of my cave system and inhabit it with various plants and new animals. To start my plan, I first laid out a schematic for my first zone, the entrance. There wouldn’t be a lot of changes. I only slightly modified the area to protect me even better.

I chose to make the mice the primary animals of this zone. For that, I developed the environment to fit their needs. The cracks in the walls grew more numerous and small tunnels started to dot the walls. The insect population of the caverns grew, to feed the large mice swarm.

As a last touch, I ordered the mice to work together in an ant-like kingdom. Sadly, they split up into two rival powers. An evolved Mouse-queen ruling over the quicker mice. As their competitor was a mouse-king inhabiting the lands of the larger and stronger mice.

Now with my original cave system changed into something more fitting, I expanded my domain. It spread into the unexplored earth and further increased my influence. I planed out the first 5 zones of my dungeon. The first, already finished zone, was the entrance.
Protected by the mouse kingdoms and the red mouse guardian.

The guardian was an intrinsic part of the evolution I achieved. It allowed me to improve some of my creatures. Limited to every zone I could infuse creatures with mana. This would make them stronger and more likely to evolve. Though I couldn’t simply infuse every creature with enough mana to make them a full guardian, because a guardian used up a lot of control

The guardians came in various different modes. I could infuse a single guardian or a whole tribe of them. Furthermore, I could create the craziest and weirdest guardian combos imaginable. For the first zone, I decided to make the red mouse and its descendants into guardians. This guardian mode was called, family guardian.

With my first zone now finally finished I concentrated on the second one!!!

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A note from Yotro

Hope you enjoyed the chapter and thanks for reading!!!

Please leave a review or rating and comment on the story, telling me what works and what doesn’t. It helps me improve the story and is really motivating, only takes a sec!!

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About the author

Yotro

  • Earth
  • Author

Bio: Hey, Hello and Welcome.
I am Yotro, a dedicated reader in love with any kind of fantasy genre, that started creating more of what he loved. I write fictions for fun and create content around them such as maps, artwork, and various other things.

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Comments(38)
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whoever ago

You might want to redo the punctuation in this one. There are so many comas where there should be full stop or nothing and so many missing comas at other places that removing all of them and starting placing them from scratch would likely be easier than trying to correct what punctuation signs are there.

Unless you are trying to write in a fictional language, the plural of mouse is usually considered to be mice.

There is also no rule that a fiction about a dungeon core has to start with the creation of the core. (At least you did not start with the back story, so you are already better than average.) It's usually hard to get excited about the first steps of a dungeon, so starting the narration later might make it much easier to gain readers.

    Yotro ago

    Thanks for the feedback,

    punctuation is a problem I personally find extreamly difficult even since childhood and it showed heavily in any language grades. I will try to shorten some sentences and fix the punctuation errors but don't expect a lot regarding that.

    For your point that the fiction should atart at a later point in the story I find intresting. The problem is that I can't find a specific point at which the story should start. Furthermore, I needed the first months of the dungeon to craft the rules and how rhe world works around him. I couldnof course have a narrator explain everyting more clearly but wanted the reader to soley get information and read about the dungeon core.

    I'll try to include your criticism into the story and thanks a lot for correcting my mistakes

      Yotro ago

      A question I would personally have towards my reader is if you would like shorter or longer chapters. This chapter is about 3000 words long and I planned to make the future ones roughly the same length. My question would be if I should make the chapters shorther to anout 1000-1500 words which will increas upload frequency.

      whoever ago

      The problem is that I can't find a specific point at which the story should start. Furthermore, I needed the first months of the dungeon to craft the rules and how rhe world works around him.

      It all depends what the story you want to tell is. What your intended audience is. And and and.

      But my personal suggestion would be to start after everything is explained in your plan and the actual story begins.

      Having a full and consistent set or rules is important, but actually knowing them will usually matter little to mot readers. What is important is what is needed to follow the story, make sense of what the characters do amd be able to guess a bit what they might try next. (And even all that together can be still less important than the actual story).

      There have already been so many dungeon stories explaining so many rules, that depending on your intended audience you might even get away without explaining any of the rules at all. (There won't be that many readers on RR that have never read a dungeon story. And your chances to attract so many other readers to the first dungeon story they read might also be slim.) It's always a question on what knowledge you assume and what you explain. Would you explain the form of ears of elves for example?

      Dungeon stories with tutorials can be a bit easier than 'natural' dungeons, as the tutorial can be the scenery of the story starting (though most stories still show too much tutorial in their tutorial chapters). You might want to ask yourself: What is the purpose of those chapters? If the answer is "explain the rules to the reader", then there is a very bad chance you'll just write a data dump in disguise.

      Bluelightning42 ago

      Punctuation is hard for me as well. I get the opposite feedback constantly that every sentence I write is a run-on.

      Even though I'm liberally using commas in my writing and stopping at what "sounds the best" in my head... it's still an issue.

      Anyways feedback that's not just a repeat of what others have written, but still building on whoever's point - The details you provide are dependant upon what type of story you're trying to tell. If the main focus is on dungeon building, then I'd even argue more details are better. Try to twist some of the existing tropes about "templates" for example, or mess around with the magic system to the point it feels unique. There is a market for just reading about unique systems and thinking about what can be done with them after all.

      If the details don't matter and are just a rehash (for example if you are writing a power fantasy or focusing on the interactions between the core and how others react to him). Then it's much easier to skip through them as fast as possible - most of your readers already know how dungeon cores work. You could even rename chapter 1 to be a prologue and thus technically skippable if you want to start "directly" when it gets interesting.

      Yotro ago

      I like the idea to make the first chapter into a prologue, depicting the protagonist's childhood. Will probably look into it later down the line.

      Regarding what I want my story to be.

      The end goal is to describe the ancient civilizations' reaction to first seeing a dungeon. Mixed into these interactions there is a bit of dungeon building and experimenting with the magic and evolution system.

      The U.S.P (Unique Selling Point) of the story should be that no one knows shit. The world just started and everyone is experimenting around.

      It may sometimes seem similar to Humans experimenting with magic in system-apocalypse stories, which I really like.

      Bluelightning42 ago

      In that case, I'm looking forward to the point when he makes first contact. If thats the selling point you should make sure to reach it within the first couple of chapters even if it starts out small (A hunter? Random Explorer?) some sort of indication of how people will react within the first 5-6 chapters without immediately jumping to bustling dungeon town.

      Good luck!

Yotro ago

Thanks again, I will probably wait gor rewriteing the story when I have 10 chapters out.

Grammatical errors will still be fixed togeter with a reordering paragraphes

In the next 10 chapter, I allready wrote thr secoubd and third, I will collect all the reviews. After which I will then rewrite anything I didn't like and my readers would want to have changed.

Slim Torbot ago

Edit suggestions:

With the water also came the Mmarine life, especially fishes which now began to inhabit the small pond in the largest cavern.

Aschente ago

Edit suggestions:

With the water also came the Marine life

Aschente ago

wait what there are tree's inside the dungeon?

Wargod1 ago

Edit suggestions:

Its outcome is influenced by everything the creature does while it cultivates the necessary mana to undergo evolution and its intendintent, if intelligent enough.

With the water also came the MarinMarine life, especially fishes which now began to inhabit the small pond in the largest cavern.

Atheos ago

Edit suggestions:

With my vast knowledge, I created a plan for the first layer of my dungeon.

This part is obvious so you don't need to add it.

Hawkstorm125 ago

Edit suggestions:

With the water also came the Marine life, especially fishes which now began to inhabit the small pond in the largest cavern.

Horrendous anglelrfishes inhabited the deepest lakes and bright koi fishes blinded their predators.

I was ready to evolve.

Having analyzed the information, I got I started with my evolution. Slowly the mana inside my core formed an intricate pattern and I felt my mind become sluggish. Until I finally I fell into a sleep-like state, with hope and excitement filling my crystal.

The small tunnel and room system I buildt looked more natural.

I now knoew more about my first zones natural inhabitants.

up a lot of control.

EvilEngineer ago

Edit suggestions:

With the water also came the Marinmarine life, especially fishes which now began to inhabit the small pond in the largest cavern.

Bamboocha ago

Edit suggestions:

Its outcome is influenced by everything the creature does while it cultivates the necessary mana to undergo evolution and its intendt, if intelligent enough.

tThe first, already finished zone, was the entrance.

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