In Norse mythology, saying something out loud was to give it form, meaning, and power. That's why fate is called a 'wyrd'. The Wyrd of Stromgard is exactly what it says it is- the power to shape heroic tales amidst chaos, violence, and magic.
The Wyrd of Stromgard is an expansion to Dungeon World that comes with everything you need to run highly detailed Norse fantasy and Viking campaigns.
It comes with 10 character playbooks, 7 compendium classes, monsters, an entire setting with complex societies and cultures, equipment, a ready-made adventure, GM Toolbox, and more. Built to utilize Dungeon World's ruleset, Stromgard is a highly detailed stage setting that will make your games feel like they were pulled right out of the Poetic Edda.
Right now, The Wyrd of Stromgard exists as a PDF. We want to print a physical book, commission a ton of artwork, make GM screens, maps, and extras to add to the project!
It was important for us that The Wyrd of Stromgard offer structure where needed but also be flexible enough to stand up to player agency and GMs flexing their creative wings. Therefore, we spent a lot of time making sure that the components of Stromgard can be altered, dismantled, and changed without falling apart. Also, the original Dungeon World classes play well in Stromgard, too!
Here's a rough chapter by chapter breakdown on what you'll find in both the print and PDF versions:
Running a Viking themed game shouldn't leave you hung up on 100% watertight historical accuracy but Stromgard includes a chapter on real life Norse peoples to help you frame your games. Learn about the the real peoples that forged their livelihoods in the harsh winters and waters of Scandinavia in the late 8th-10th centuries and find which end of the period gives you the setting aesthetic you're most interested in. Stromgard was primarily inspired by surviving literature of Norse lore and this chapter will also provide readers with a run-down of the best places to start should they feel inclined to do some weekend anthropology of their own. We did a lot of reading to keep Stromgard as close to Norse myth as possible.
There are 10 playbooks to choose from in The Wyrd of Stromgard. Each class is based on an archetype pulled from Norse legend and comes equipped with an arsenal of moves that make for well-rounded characters in possession of both strengths, weaknesses, and individual specialties.
Stromgard has 10 unique playbooks:
The Bearskin - Powerful warriors that leverage feral bloodrages to overcome adversity in battle at a cost.
The Skald - Highly respected academics and lorekeepers trusted to to keep the lines of heroes recorded.
The Stormcaller - Wild elementalists that control ice, wind, and lightning.
The Crone - Intimidating arcanists that weave subtle curses and manipulates others.
The Hunter - Roguish, scrappy brawlers that specialize in debilitating their enemies.
The Alfir - Immortal Light Elves that leverage their divine status to instill rally others and lead them into battle.
The Fae - Wily and powerful beings that excel at working strange pacts and unique magics.
The Dvergr - Ancient dwarven race famed for their innate skill with magical metallurgy and favor of the gods.
The Troll - Terrifying monsters that regenerate grave wounds and eat people to maintain their immense strength. Sunlight is their bane.
The Jötunnborn - Those with ice giant and mortal blood mixed gain many mysterious powers and make powerful, hearty warriors that utilize their cunning and feral instincts to triumph.
These classes provide PCs in longer-form games additional moves to specialize their talents with once the class's prerequisite 'plot point' is met.
Stromgard has 7 unique compendium classes:
The Runecaster - Weave the subtle magic of rune inscription.
The Fae-Touched - Entering into a deal with a Fae comes with some benefits.
The Úlfhéðnar - For Bearskin characters. Taking an oath to protect your charge when you rely on a blood frenzy in battle can be a double-edged sword.
The Seiðr - Powerful and respected oracle who can deliver visions of the future.
The Ghost Rider - Hellish vigilante participant in the Wild Hunt.
The Voyager - A fearless explorer that commands multiple ships and sails the world.
The Unsavage - A cunning and pragmatic person that makes the best of carrying the burden of dishonor.
The setting of Stromgard is huge and intricately detailed- but it's designed to be customized during play and easily accommodates anything your game group may come up with on the fly.
The Wyrd of Stromgard provides all the juicy details a fully functioning society needs- like economy, lifestyles, and resource availability- to frame your adventures. There are many societies in Stromgard and they are all unique, with their own values, definition of honor, and relationships that can make interacting with them fulfilling or dangerous, depending the narratives players weave.
Many races are described in detail within Wyrd of Stromgard and while you may recognize these fantasy staples, they have been reinterpreted here as Norse as can be, pulling from Northern European lore and literature to fully establish these peoples as thriving, unique cultures. You will, of course, find many human settlements in Stromgard, as well as elves (both immortal and not), dwarves, primordial Dvergr, gnomes, halflings, and Jötnar- who are prominent in nearly every major Norse myth still in existence.
Warfare and Conquest
Vikings are possibly most famous for their amazingly long sea voyages and their absolutely brutal sacking of European ports and you will find a wealth of information on tactics, honor, and pillaging so you can play out your own conquest.
Gods and Religion
As magic and unseen forces are real, tangible, and sometimes directly threatening in Stromgard, so to are its gods- though how they work and whether you will ever see or interact with one remains a mystery.
Places of Interest
The book includes a black and white map illustration with several premade locations on it that you can utilize in your campaigns. These locations will also include text descriptions and steading tags to help describe how they stand on a mechanical level as well as their relationships to the surrounding peoples.
Magic and Fate
You'll also find a chapter describing the arcane and divine energies that make magic in Stromgard possible. Fate and destiny played a large role in real Norse mythos and so to does it factor into Stromgard's stories.
The Wyrd of Stromgard comes with a full monster manual featuring approximately 20 monsters with unique drives and moves- many of which are obscure horrors from rare legends and tales.
Each monster will have their own illustration and a few paragraphs noting their origin or behavior. They'll also have stats, a brief explanation of their most prominent features or behaviors, and a narrative example to give you inspiration when using them in-game. You'll find classic Norse monsters like mermaids, the gullinbursti, Surt, and Vargar, as well as a mix of original and extremely rare monsters like knútr, storrkat, and the elusive níðhöggr .
The equipment section consists of four main parts: weapons, armor, items, and services. Each item contained was inspired by real Viking weapons and armor, with particular attention paid to the iron-scarcity most warriors would be subjected to in a historically-inspired Norse world. The services section details what kinds of craftsmen or specialists you could reasonably expect they include things like various grooming treatments, tattooing, oversea passage, and more.
The GM resources in the back of the book are a smörgåsbord of helpful tools that can support play and enhance narrative in many different ways. You'll find advice for how to stay on top of GM principles while playing in the Stromgard setting, tips for managing game groups, advice for facilitating character development, session structuring suggestions, as well as general "best practices" advice that we've used at our tables with great success for many years! You'll also find tips on how to build longer form campaigns, letting the PCs lead the way, creating gods and religions, a mundane loot table (all items of which would make excellent hooks), a legendary treasures list with powerful items taken right out of the Eddas, and an NPC generation table for when you need to quickly make a memorable NPC. Also included is a pool of Viking surnames and a crash course on pronouncing old Norse in case you really want to get your table in the mood.
The Wyrd of Stromgard comes with one Adventure ready for you to unleash on your game night. They won't know what hit them. Broken into four separate parts (like seasons of a TV show) each danger ramps up quickly to monstrous boss fights that all tie together into a finale that puts the players making their last stand against Ragnarök with the remaining peoples of the world. They'll have to fight off Fenrir, the wolf who eats the world and claims Odin's life, Jormungand, the Midgard Serpent who kills Thor, and finally Surt, a primordial fire giant bent on razing Yggdrasil to the ground.
The Adventure has everything you need to jump right in and start playing. It includes a narrative introduction to set the stage, plus four separate dangers that each have their own impulses, major forces at work, impending dooms, grim portents, starter hooks, and narrative inspiration. Each section will also have custom moves, items, and monsters.
Both the PDF and the physical book will have black and white interior illustration created by master occult artist Eli Spencer. Each playbook will have a full page class portrait and all monsters have an accompanying illustration. There are other embellishments all over the book as well- including inventory spreads for compendium classes. The cover will feature a wraparound design painted by Camille Kuo- which depicts two over-ambitious Norse warriors swiftly failing to bargain with a Norn, a keeper of knowledge who demands a heavy price for information.
The physical book will be printed as a 6x9in US Trade Paperback (15.24x22.86cm) which is the same dimensions as the original Dungeon World book and will be over 300 pages long (for a size comparison, Dungeon World has 408 pages).
For backers at the Skald/GM level, the GM screen will be very similar to older style GM screens- it will be made of simple stock and fold up nicely to fit with the rest of your game materials or on your book shelf. Folded up, it will be 9x12in (22.86x30.48cm) and unfolded it will be 27x12in (68.58x30.48cm). Funfact: we actually modeled this after the GM screen that came with the now-vintage 1993 TSR DragonStrike board game because we've been using it for 25 years and love it a lot. The exterior of the screen features a hugely detailed painting by the extremely talented Camille Kuo, who was also our cover artist. It depicts Jormungand, the Midgard Serpent, making sure some sailors have a bad day. The inside of the screen provides a lot of information at a glance so you don't have to go digging through Dungeon World to answer some common scenarios. I've included Basic Moves, Special Moves, a Tag Glossary, GM Principles, GM Agenda, and more.
The GM level backers also get the map, which will be a high quality, glossy poster that can be hung on a wall or used as a game prop (my personal recommendation!). It will be sized at 18x24in (45.72x60.96cm) and will come folded. The map will be drawn by our interior artist, Eli Spencer, who is an absolute wizard with lore-book inspired ink work and is extremely well suited to create ancient maps and mystic embellishments. The map will have locales and natural features of Stromgard depicted, showing the steadings listed in the book plus a few extra things and a lot of unlabeled features for you to claim as your own and incorporate into your own games.
We want to make the best product possible and we want to involve our backers in the creation process of bringing Stromgard to print. To do this, we're going to send all our backers at the PDF and higher reward levels a copy of the current draft of The Wyrd of Stromgard as soon as the project funds. We'll be inviting them to a special Discord server where they can give feedback and talk about the book directly with us as we edit. This way, we can refine Stromgard before it even gets to the printers and directly involve those who are interested in seeing it be the best it can be.
The feedback period will last through all revisions until the book is deemed suitable for final printing, which will likely be several months.
There's a lot of reward tiers for you to choose from with a lot of really cool incentives for our backers!
- Everyone who backs at the Hedgedruid/PDF tier or higher will get access to the Feedback Discord once the project successfully funds.
- All tiers except for the Vikingr/Playbook tier will gain access to all stretch goals as they become available.
- Shipping in the USA is already included in the tier costs but if you are an international backer, please add $5.
Tell your friends cause we got Backer Goals
Every time we hit a milestone with the number of backers, all y'all win! The wallpaper reward will unlock high quality images you can use as backgrounds on your desktop pc or mobile phone. For every additional item and monster reward unlocked, we'll make a unique new monster/item to add into the final version of the book. We'll run a poll with some options and the backers get to choose! Keep in mind that all monsters added to the Monster manual will get the full 2 page spread! That means artwork, history, stats/behavior, and narrative example!
Each additional Adventure will consist of 15ish pages and follow a cohesive, exciting narrative while providing unique monsters, items, locations, and moves. We'll put up a poll for each Adventure unlocked so backers can choose which story or theme they're the most interested in seeing produced. These will be distributed in PDF form.
At the 8k tier, we'll have multiple illustrations produced for each adventure and will be included in the PDFs!
At 10k, the Adventures get added as appendix chapters into the print version of the book.
At 20k, these Adventures stay in the book but all of their items, equipment, locations, etc will additionally be incorporated into the rest of the book. All Adventure monsters will be added to the Monster Manual and given a 2 page spread (that's like 15-20 new monsters with illustrations, stats, and narrative examples), 5-10 new items and equipment will be added to the Equipment section, 2-5 steadings will be added, any special moves will be added.
We know shipping can be a logistical hellscape for the unprepared and we want you to know that we got this.
The reason we can offer $5 international shipping is because the printer we will be using has locations in Australia, Canada, United Kingdom + greater European areas, plus their location in the United States. They allow us to print as few as just one book- so even if just 1 Australian order comes in, for instance, we can be fill it without massive expense to the backer. The print facility ships the product to a fulfillment center located near the backer before sending it on to its final destination. Because not everything is coming out of the United States, we can offer low cost shipping to our overseas friends with no 'tax and duties paid by consignee" horror stories waiting to happen.
Risks and challenges
Right now, we have a working draft that we've play-tested and are currently going through feedback we've already received. Even if the project failed to fund we can launch the current version through Drive Thru RPG. A successful Kickstarter means that we can pay our illustrator to produce high quality artwork and to print physical copies. This is our first Kickstarter so we researched as much as we could to try to learn from others (Thank you, Jamey Stegmaier!!). This prepared us to ship worldwide using fulfillment centers to drastically lower the cost of shipping and ensure our EU backers wont be getting nailed with a surprise VAT tax. We priced the rewards so that even if the prices of printing or shipping fluctuate we will be able to fulfill all orders.
Also, since legal liability could be a problem when making a project based on an existing game, we have been bugging Adam Koebel and Sage LaTorra over email (they are really friendly and patient, bless them) to make sure that we are not stepping on any copyrights (we had playbooks to show off but they were too similar to the official Dungeon World layout/design and we're currently redoing them, for instance).
Finally, we have backed many projects ourselves and know how frustrating lack of communication and missed deadlines can be. We set our deadline at a worst case scenario (we intend to get this book to you well before June- it's already written after all) and we will be communicating actively every step of the way (we're actually really excited to send updates with each new piece of art and highlights of our feedback).Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (30 days)