This is exactly the case.
> As each one of these items
> only affect a very small number of people it is unlikely that the
> same person would find the same kind of ruin twice (which would be a
> bad thing).
This is the idea behind my (Scott Turner's) ruins proposal. Ruins
would be semi-permanent, and scattered about the map. They might
be hidden, so you'd need to EXPLORE to find them. Once found, you
could enter them, do battle with nasties there, and receive a prize
if you were successful. The prize might be lore, gold, or an artifact.
The trick is that you can't explore the same ruin twice, but other
players who haven't explored the ruin can still explore it. The monsters
generated can even be scaled to match the toughness of the adventurer.
Ruins are small, so big armies can't go in and kill the monsters. It's
strictly an adverturer/hero sort of thing.
-- Rich Skrenta <firstname.lastname@example.org> N2QAV