Maybe the librarians can help them out. This is half rumor table, half dungeon generator.
SCHOLARS FIND AN ACCOUNT WRITTEN BY:
- An agent of a foreign empire that claimed dominion over the ruins, like Napoleon in Egypt. Inconsiderate and condescending. Mostly describes FLASHY ARTIFACTS that would be good displays.
- A conqueror’s enslaved scribe. Reluctant and fatalistic in the face of this culture’s destruction by his overlord. Notes LAYOUT AND DEFENSES, claiming their futility.
- The charismatic leader of a cargo cult. Zealous; earnestly claims rights as the builders’ true heirs. Focused on the trappings of builder culture to reinforce own legitimacy (mostly religion and technology: MAGIC, ARMS & ARMOR, SYMBOLS)
- A romanticizing poet writing centuries later. Attempts to use report to further ‘noble savage’ or golden age ideology, focusing on EVIDENCES OF SOCIAL ACTIVITIES.
- A census taker during reign of a prosperous kingdom. Dispassionate and businesslike, mostly just lists. Notes population and amount of taxable goods (TREASURE AND ANIMALS).
- A sensationalist archeologist, tampering with the findings to win further support. Bombastic clickbait. Describes ALL KEY PARTS of the dungeon but is only correct 50% of time.
THE BUILDERS WERE UNDERGROUND TO:
- Hide from the sun (biological reason)
- Hide from surface weather (biological reason)
- Hide from a particular person (social reason)
- Hide from an enemy group (tactical reason)
- Mine (resources)
- Farm (resources)
- Conceal an item (burying)
- Contain a powerful being (imprisonment)
- Research (observing)
- (roll twice; unclear or contradictory reasons)
NEW OCCUPANTS HAVE TAKEN AN INTEREST IN:
- Some sort of technical bow
- A jade eyepiece
- Ancient aged wine
- Information on the Jabberwock
- A stashed supply of gethre
- Old, heretical version of current holy symbol
- A powerful weapon like a cannon
- A black mirror
- A poisonous (radioactive) ore
- An immortal coelacanth/aboleth
- Orichalc burial armor
- A mass grave
- Rare Emperor’s Crown Mushrooms
- A magnet with the strength to levitate metal
- Golden oracular skull
- A hand of glory
- A bath that reincarnates, but leaves the user with no memory
- A sword that reflects death magic