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Dwarven Glory

You are a Dwarf.

Not the proud and stubborn warrior found in so many fantasy novels and RPGs, however; but a crafty, elusive trickster with an affinity for magic. In Norse sagas and legends, the greatest magicians are often dwarves. They are associated with rocks, the earth, luck, craft, metal work, wisdom, and greed.

You live within an isolated dwarven enclave of Asgård. Your people were spared much of the hardship that fell upon other races during Ragnarök. However, there were still many smaller dwarf-holds and colonies that were lost to earthquakes, goblin hordes, fell monsters, or other disasters.

It is your mission to determine what has become of these settlements…

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The Black City

A few months ago I picked up Pits & Perils from Olde House Rules. It’s modeled after the numerous war games-turned-fantasy RPG campaigns that proliferated during the early 1970s.

At the time, I also happened to read a bunch of John Arendt‘s posts from the Black City Project. John explains the Black City as follows:

The vision behind the project is to create a “weird horror” megadungeon, that blends the standard D&D tropes with aliens and elements of sci fi fantasy, a touch of H.P. Lovecraft, and a heaping helping of Vikings.

I was inspired to start making a mashup of the Pits & Perils rules with the Black City campaign setting. I’ve kind of abandoned my earlier Dwarven Glory game, so I figure I’ll post my Black City teaser here in case the whim ever takes me to run it…

Runecarver

Valhalla-viking

(UPDATE 29-Oct-14: I picked up the Codex Nordica from Troll Lord Games this week, and found some ideas to swipe. Nordica runes are highlighted in purple, while ones from the Additional Runes post are in blue.)

For your convenience, provided here is a compiled list of runes in Dwarven Glory. Refer to the Runecasting Supplement for more information.

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(These options haven’t been playtested at all, but I’m posting them anyways. Another pair of classes from the Codex Nordica by Troll Lord Games. The seiðkona and völva are primarily intended as NPC classes, but may be available to players if the referee allows.)

Seiðkona and Völva

Seiðkona and völva are practitioners of an ancient feminine sorcery called the Seiðr. With the Seiðr, the user spins charms and enchantments as she would thread from a loom. The distaff (or seiðrstafr) symbolizes the magic weave of the Seiðr and is not just an object for creating cloth. Male practitioners are treated with scorn and disdain by the majority of Asgårdian society, who deem them frail and cowardly.

Seiðkona are masters of charms of influence and illusion, while völva specialize in divination and prophesy. Rune magic is a lesser art for both these classes since they focus on the manipulative power of the Seiðr.

Although weak in combat, seiðkona and völva possess many special class abilities and moderate runecasting power.

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Giant-Killers

(I picked up the Codex Nordica from Troll Lord Games this week, and found some ideas to swipe. First up is the Giant-Killer class…)

Giant-Killer

Ever since the slaying of Ymir by the sons of Borr during the Age of Giants, there has been a tradition by many races to do the same. The progeny of the Jötnar – universally malicious and cruel – are found throughout Asgård, and some heroes make a life of crusading against them.

As with all house rules, use of this class option is subject to referee approval.

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I just downloaded Issue #2 of the The Dragon Horde by Richard LeBlanc. Available in print and pdf, it’s a Nordic-themed issue with Linnorms, longhouses, and Völva:

DHZ2-Preview-Cover

I haven’t had a chance to do a thorough read-through, but I already intend to steal some of these ideas for Dwarven Glory. You can check out more from New Big Dragon Games at the Save vs. Dragon blog.

Greater Runes

(The description for several classes mention that “additional abilities can be gained at higher levels”. Described here are greater runes – an example of the secrets that can be learned by experienced runecasters.)

WebofWyrd

Greater runes are powerful magicks that can only be acquired by high-level practitioners. Each greater rune has a number of prerequisites – typically a minimum caster level plus several lesser runes known. In additiion, greater runes are a secret lore that must be obtained through adventuring or via a special quest – you can’t simply select one when leveling up.

The referee will provide additional information about greater runes as your character grows in experience.

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