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This is Conan roleplaying as Robert E. Howard wrote it – savage pulp adventure battling ancient horrors in the Hyborian Age
This is Conan roleplaying as Robert E. Howard wrote it – savage pulp adventure battling ancient horrors in the Hyborian Age
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Old & Young Gorm Excerpt! Hoard Pledge Options

Posted by Chris Birch, Modiphius (Creator)

Hi hope you're all having a great weekend! Tonight we have a double helping of Gorm - Old Gorm and Young Gorm for you to test out in your adventures with the Conan roleplaying game!

Hoard of Yezdigerd, Secrets of Mount Yishma & Treasure of Tranicos Options. First I have agreed another option for Hoard' Pledges who want to be able to swap out items in place of the Conqueror's Edition. We'll now let you swap it for two printed geomorphic tile sets of your choice. 

We've also been talking about a pledge that will get you a great deal on the core supplements whilst not being as pricy as the Hoard' pledge. This would just include the 'Conan the ....' supplements only and core book but nothing else (you can always choose add ons). It won't be as great a deal as the Hoard but we'll try to get this sorted in the next couple of days. 

Content Preview: Old Gorm 

Though Conan the Cimmerian is perhaps the greatest hero of the Hyborian Age, he was not alone. Throughout Conan’s travels across his world, he encountered many, from epic foes to stalwart allies. When he returned to his homeland and ventured even further north into the warring lands of Nordheim, Conan fell in with a group of Aesir warriors. Among their number was Old Gorm, a seasoned veteran of many a battle… a man familiar with the strange and terrifying world beyond our own.

Old Gorm of the Aesir

“Not so!” cried an older man, whose eyes were wild and weird. “It was Atali, the daughter of Ymir, the frost-giant! To fields of the dead she comes, and shows herself to the dying! Myself when a boy I saw her, when I lay half-slain on the bloody field of Wolraven. I saw her walk among the dead in the snows, her naked body gleaming like ivory and her golden hair unbearably bright in the moonlight. I lay and howled like a dying dog because I could not crawl after her. She lures men from stricken fields into the wastelands to be slain by her brothers, the ice-giants, who lay men’s red hearts smoking on Ymir’s board. The Cimmerian has seen Atali, the frost-giant’s daughter!” — Old Gorm, “The Frost Giant’s Daughter”

A valorous warrior, Gorm’s life would have ended long ago with his entry into Valhalla, the Nordheimer’s fabled Hall of the Mighty, where warriors might acquit themselves in death as well as they did in life. There, he would have known much honor. However, the Norns had woven a different skein of fate for him, and as such, he lives on with a singular distinction, having been one of the few men to have seen Atali — daughter of Ymir, chieftain of the Nordheimr gods — and lived. 

Two and half a score of years ago, on the field of Wolraven, where the dead were heaped against the sky in piles, stiff in frozen mail, Gorm lay, near death, and in that moment, he saw Atali, the pale, flame-haired beauty said to visit the fields of the dead. Though her supernatural allure drew him, his wounds were too great, and he could not follow where she led. All the better, though, for what she sought from him was his beating heart, to be wrenched from his breast and laid upon Ymir’s board as a bloody offering. He could not move, and though he howled for the sweet release she would grant him, she chose another warrior, and Gorm was left to die. 

[Old Gorm by Tim Truman]

But he did not perish then, and now, though many years have passed and Gorm’s hair has gone was white as the snows of his homeland, he remembers her, and he is still marked by that strange and terrible thirst she bestowed upon him.

In the life of a Nordheimr warrior, there a dozen or more defining moments, whether the first clash of shield against shield, the first time steel bites into flesh, a first hunt, or the pleasure of another. For Gorm, that encounter with Atali has ruled the remaining span of his life, her otherworldly presence became far more real than any reality he has felt before or since that fateful day. None would call him less than a capable warrior, but even his wolf-brothers think him touched in the head. And perhaps he is. Even still, that glimpse into a world not quite ours instilled in Gorm a sight beyond mortal ken. Coupled with his natural battle instincts, honed over a lifetime of combat, Gorm has a keen sense of danger and on occasion, the future… or so he says.

Among his people he is something of a good luck totem, and his village has never fallen in ambush with Gorm on patrol. Over the years, the seasoned warrior gained a reputation for a wisdom which belies common sight. Sadly, he has likewise become the butt of jokes spouted by his lesser, who forgot what he has done for their clan. Yet Gorm knows what he saw and what he sees still, burned into his sight, Atali’s white feet dancing over the snow each time he closes his eyes.

Driven wild by that fateful meeting, Gorm sought Atali in the snows to the north, into hated Vanahein, in the snowy hills of Cimmeria and even the rocky peaks of Hyperborea. With his second sight, he saw many things that other men could not, and he found that the spirit world touched this world in far too many ways to ignore. In time, he grew bolder and more conversant with such beings, and finds them more welcome company than that of his fellow Aesir. And in truth, many of these beings, invisible to other mortals, find some comfort in one of the living who can behold them and not shrink away.

While Gorm is atypical of his brethren in many ways, in his heart he is still a true Aesir at heart. For if his blood burns more for a spectral woman than for blood, who is to say he is wrong? After all, every Aesir hopes to see Atali when they die. Perhaps their attitude toward Gorm is less one of dismissal than jealousy. For Old Gorm, if he speaks the truth, has glimpsed that which few living men can boast to know…

Old Gorm

  • Agility 9
  • Awareness 12
  • Brawn 10
  • Coordination 8
  • Intelligence 10
  • Personality 10
  • Willpower 10


  • Armor: Mail (3)
  • Vigor: 12
  • Courage: 6
  • Resolve: 15

Skills (TN/ Skill Focus) 

  • Acrobatics 11/1
  • Animal Handling 13/1
  • Athletics 12/1
  • Counsel 13/2
  • Discipline 15/4
  • Healing 12/1
  • Insight 17/4
  • Lore 13/1
  • Melee 12/3
  • Observation 14/2
  • Parry 11/3
  • Resistance 12/2
  • Society 11/1
  • Sorcery 12/1
  • Stealth 12/2
  • Survival 14/2


Spear (M): Reach 3, 5 CD], Piercing 1, Unbalanced

Large Shield (M): 4[CD], Knockdown, Stun 

Battle Axe (M): Reach 2, 5[CD], Vicious 1, Unbalanced


Sixth Sense*: Old Gorm may re-roll one d20 when making an Insight test, but must accept the new result. In the event of an ambush, Old Gorm gains an additional bonus point of Momentum. Old Gorm will know if an Insight test is called for due to the presence of Sorcery. 

Pierce the Veil: Old Gorm has a knack for recognizing the subtle cues of supernatural ability. Whenever he is in the presence of the supernatural or beings with unusual powers — particularly if is not aware of it — the gamemaster should have Old Gorm attempt an Average (D1) Insight test. On a success, Old Gorm recognises that the being has supernatural abilities, and he may spend two Momentum to identify the type of abilities. This test should be made even if the intended being does not have any abilities currently active. 

Know the Signs: Old Gorm has personally dealt with the effects of the supernatural, and he recognises the signs of its activity. Whenever Old Gorm is in the presence of a person or object that was affected by supernatural abilities within the last five hours, he may attempt an Insight test with a difficulty equal to the number of hours ago the person or object was affected. On a success, Old Gorm can recognise the taint of the supernatural. By spending two points of Momentum, Old Gorm can identify the specific powers that were use. 

Deflect: Old Gorm is a capable warrior who maintains his weapons in the best position with which to defend himself. When armed, Old Gorm can take a second parry without generating a point of Doom. If the weapon does not have the Parrying quality, it gains it. 

No Mercy*: When making a melee combat attack, Old Gorm may re-roll a number of [CD] equal to the total number of melee talents he has acquired. The new die rolls must be accepted. 

Prowess*: Old Gorm may re-roll any dice that did not generate a success on the initial roll when making a Resistance test, but must accept the new result. Courageous*: Old Gorm gains 1 Courage Soak for every point of Discipline Focus. This has been added to his attributes above. 

Iron Will: Old Gorm has survived countless challenges and he is prepared to face even more. He doesn’t cry out when struck or startled, and rebounds quickly from Stress. When he takes a Recover action, he recovers Vigor and Resolve rather than having to choose a particular Stress. In addition to this, Old Gorm can perform the Recover action as a minor action for 2 points of Doom. If Old Gorm takes up this option, he does not get to reroll cover dice as outlined in the Recover action.

Languages Cimmerian, Nordheimr 

Special Trait 

Touched by the Gods: Many perceive Old Gorm as addle-brained, but he has witnessed a lifetime of strange phenomena. Gorm thinks nothing of conversing with the spirits, which leads others to think him deranged, his weird eyes a testament to this state. Old Gorm regains a Fortune point whenever his advice is discounted by others, including any test where he voluntarily fails a Persuasion test.

Young Gorm 

Old Gorm was generated using the same method as if he were a player character, then aged with experience (approximately 20,000 experience points). To use a younger version of Gorm alongside other beginning-level characters, use the Attributes and Skills below and grant him only the Talents from the above list that are marked with an asterisk. This version represents Gorm after his encounter with Atali. 

Young Gorm

  • Agility 8
  • Awareness 10
  • Brawn 9
  • Coordination 8
  • Intelligence 9
  • Personality 8
  • Willpower 10


  • Armor: Mail (3)
  • Vigor: 11
  • Courage: 1
  • Resolve: 12

Skills (TN/Skill Focus)

  • Acrobatics 9/1
  • Animal Handling 10/1
  • Athletics 10/1
  • Counsel 9/1
  • Discipline 12/2
  • Healing 10/1
  • Insight 14/4
  • Lore 10/1
  • Melee 11/3
  • Observation 11/1
  • Parry 10/2
  • Resistance 11/2
  • Society 9/1
  • Stealth 9/1
  • Survival 12/2


Chris, Modiphius

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    1. Nathan Dowdell on

      The version posted above appears to use the older versions of the weapon stats. Not 100% on the Deflect talent wording, as I'm still doing a pass on that chapter.

    2. Chris Birch, Modiphius 7-time creator on

      @David I'll check on that

    3. David Thomas on

      Are the Battle-axe and the Deflect Talent new versions of those things, or versions older than the current Quick Start?

      Great write up!
      How many of these types of characters will be in the Core book?

    4. Gary Downing on

      Hmm. Looks to be a few rule changes since the quickstart.