Advanced Search

Survivalist's Guide to SpelunkingClick to magnify
Quick Preview
Full‑size Preview

Survivalist's Guide to Spelunking


Explore the Underworld with New York Times Best-Selling author Douglas Niles.

New tools, tables, and rules for 5E.

doug niles

The Definitive Guide to Underworld Survival! 

This tome contains the collected wisdom of legendary dwarven delver Dugmore Dumple. Dugmore takes you through crystalline caverns, fungal jungles and maze-like passages of his home beneath the surface, even skirting the upper regions of Hel itself. 

Survival in the Underworld is no mean feat, but this massive tome contains all you need to exist and endure, nay, prosper in and profit from the lightless realms below. Dugmore’s sage advice, carefully balanced by seasoned traveler and guide Fin Starling, provides all the tools you require to enhance your experience while exploring the fabled caverns and tunnels below the surface.   


This book includes an array of modular tools and rules to customize your games. 

  • A comprehensive taxonomy of cave types 
  • Expanded climbing tools and rules  Advice for designing, mapping, and running 3-D environments 
  • Modular rules for momentum and chases 
  • Rules for mining minerals and exotic ores 
  • Streamlined rules for tracking supplies  
  • Foraging and hunting rules  
  • Detailed segmented spellcasting and combat maneuvers 
  • Rules to make tactical combat puzzles 
  • Highly modular hazard generators 
  • Comprehensive notes on light and darkness 
  • A breath-engine for exploration of flooded caverns or spore-choked jungles 
  • Rules for hypothermia, hyperthermia, and more exotic afflictions like Shroomitis 
  • The lethal hazards of elemental border regions 
  • A glimpse at the lightless abyss and the upper regions of Hel 

Plus, all the tables and tools you need to run an underground exploration campaign. 

Applied & Aggregate Spelunking

Make sure you check out Applied & Aggregate Spelunking, the sister book to Survivalist's Guide to Spelunking. It contains a 64 page adventure in full color which helps you learn/teach the rules contained in SGS! 



Make sure you check out the supplementary books and extras for the Underdark: Tools & Tables, Drider of the Underworld, Underworld Races & Classes, Occult Secrets of the Underworld, and our best-seller Rise of the Drow: Collector's Edition


 Customers Who Bought this Title also Purchased
Reviews (1)
Discussions (2)
Customer avatar
jeremiah H May 08, 2022 2:47 am UTC
*****Great book!!!! The PDF is bookmarked and has links to jump back and forth when they refer to other rules for quick reference. I especially like the rules for setting up camp, tracking food and resting in harsh environments. IMO the rules could be used for overland travel too just depending on the location of the PC's. The rule for tracking food is simple and I really like how the players can choose to burn HD to go farther and farther into the unknown depths all while risking there lives. This is a great supplement for 5e but works great for all systems and the other great part is you can use what u want and throw out the rest. This deferentially streamlines what to do when they want to rest and short rest in harsh environments. I have not looked over the old version by TSR but I will I haven't had time yet. What I like also is these rules add grit to the game PC's aren't jus gonna travel forever with out going back to civilization or using their resources with care. I like that the ppl that wrote the book...See more
Customer avatar
Thomas B December 20, 2021 7:54 am UTC
I think I'd pay $12-15 for it (my valuation of it for me, not any reflection on Doug's work). Part of that is I have the original Dungeoneer's Survival Manual and I can easily translate most of that. It was well done, fairly complete, and makes spending $30 or even $20 a bit much.

If you don't have the original or don't want to do the conversion work, by all means, I bet it is a wonderful book. I liked both the original Dungeoneer's Survival Manual and the Wilderness Survival Manual and think they opened up the outdoors and the underground for a lot of great adventuring.
Narrow Results
$ to $
 Follow Your Favorites!
NotificationsSign in to get custom notifications of new products!

Product Information
Silver seller
File Size:
50.8 MB
Original electronic Click for more information
Scanned image
These products were created by scanning an original printed edition. Most older books are in scanned image format because original digital layout files never existed or were no longer available from the publisher.

For PDF download editions, each page has been run through Optical Character Recognition (OCR) software to attempt to decipher the printed text. The result of this OCR process is placed invisibly behind the picture of each scanned page, to allow for text searching. However, any text in a given book set on a graphical background or in handwritten fonts would most likely not be picked up by the OCR software, and is therefore not searchable. Also, a few larger books may be resampled to fit into the system, and may not have this searchable text background.

For printed books, we have performed high-resolution scans of an original hardcopy of the book. We essentially digitally re-master the book. Unfortunately, the resulting quality of these books is not as high. It's the problem of making a copy of a copy. The text is fine for reading, but illustration work starts to run dark, pixellating and/or losing shades of grey. Moiré patterns may develop in photos. We mark clearly which print titles come from scanned image books so that you can make an informed purchase decision about the quality of what you will receive.
Original electronic format
These ebooks were created from the original electronic layout files, and therefore are fully text searchable. Also, their file size tends to be smaller than scanned image books. Most newer books are in the original electronic format. Both download and print editions of such books should be high quality.
File Last Updated:
July 22, 2021
This title was added to our catalog on July 27, 2021.