This is a new solution to an ongoing problem.

Years ago, I started developing “scope” as a form of quadratic development to complement linear character advancement.

That’s when I came up with the terms:
Personal, Local, Regional, Global, Planar, and Cosmic.

As part of that, I ranked nearly every monster from the D&D Monster Manual according to scope — whether a monster of that type represented a threat of a certain scope. I had to figure out how many people could be affected.

I associated each scope with a group of 3-5 exty people, as follows:
1-Personal 3-5
2-Local 300-500
3-Regional 30k-50k
…and so forth

A monster would have to pose a threat to so many people in a given scope. That limits cosmic threats to archvillains and eldritch abominations, which is cool.

Now, that’s all great but what’s this about 1st-level monsters?

Here’s the problem I encountered some time back — 1st-level monsters just didn’t make sense, logistically. Why on earth would a villain recruit a bunch of kobolds or goblins that could easily be slaughtered by adventurers.

Sure, minions might be able to threaten commoners… but let’s pretend that isn’t our only justification for the existence of these monsters.

I’m oversimplifying the problem but that’s the most immediate and pressing concern — 1st-level monsters didn’t make sense on a logistical level.

Not unless they were free, anyway. Well, … if you’ve looked at all the new character classes I posted recently… there are some free minions for players to take advantage of — heh, did you catch what I did right there?

So I continued developing dungeon generation procedures in spite of the fact they didn’t support 1st-level monsters. And then yesterday, I had breakthroughs in several different areas of dungeon and quest/rumor development.

Humanoids should make up the majority of notable 1st-5th level creatures.

Sure, you have animals to consider but unless we’re talking mega-fauna then either these “low-level monsters” are an appendage of something bigger — in short, a higher-level, more meaningful monster.

I mean, when do you ever fight just one goblin?

The point is that you don’t make a dungeon for a bunch of low-level monsters. Not even for your brand-new, just-out-of-the-box PCs. You make a dungeon for a baddie. “Low-level dungeons” aren’t a thing. You can still have kobolds in the dungeon, you can even keep your precious 1st-level monsters.

What needs to happen though is a “bigger reason” for the dungeon. You don’t make a dungeon for some bandits. You don’t make a dungeon for some goblins. You make a dungeon for a bandit lord. You make a dungeon for a goblin king.

Everybody still with me?

I’ll come back to this with some more stuff later.