Kobold Press

Frozen Empires: Last Call for Valhalla!

What’s that looming out of the misty waters of the arctic sea? Icebergs? A maelstrom? The World Serpent? No, it’s… the commission goal!

That’s right folks, we’re about to sail over the rainbow bridge and cross into the greenlit fields of Asgard—Frozen Empires is almost commissioned. True, there’s always room for another strong back heaving on the oars of our longship, but Odin’s glory will surely fall on those who were first to set forth.

Hopefully, you’ve seen a few pieces of crunch and some setting material in our previews, but there’s still more feats, magic, and monsters than you could bury in an epic level avalanche to come. Once we hit the greenlight, prices go up. Don’t miss out on your chance to shape the project and its contents!

This project includes monsters to develop and playtest, local feats for the various Viking cultures, an ass-kicking skaldic variation on the bard, and runic magic. The dark and dangerous power of revenge is manifesting in a suite of vendetta-finishing spells, incantations, and magic items (we can always use more!), and an expansion of the survival rules will cover white-outs and snow blindness, hyperthermia, spellcasting with frostbitten fingers, combat on sledges and skis, and whatever else the cruel and inventive minds of patrons can dream up…

Our first bestiary entrant is now confirmed—a sick little puppy called the nightgarm, created by our resident Loki, Jim Groves (of RPG Superstar fame). Flying valkyries, skittering lindworms, seductive snow maidens, and colossal Jotuns are all close behind in popularity. There’s a horde more still waiting in the wings for you to suggest, create, and vote on.

We’re also talking about how to make this project as adaptable as possible, for maximum playability whether your group is adventuring in Midgard, among Golarion’s Linnorm Kings and Mammoth Lords, in Oerth’s Telchuria or the Cold Wastes of Nehwon, or your own homebrewed world. Come join the brainstorms and let us know what your perfect Glories of the North would be.

Unleash your inner barbarian and join our rampaging horde!

Sagas: The Ultimate DM Resource?

Since we‘ve peeked at setting and new rules in our last two previews, let’s take a look at potential adventures this time. So many great D&D/Pathfinder elements come straight out of the sagas (from trolls and frost giants to cursed magic items and dragon hoards) that many ancient tales read like game session writeups. Here’s a pair of examples, taken from the sagas Bosi & Herraud and Arrow-Odd.

The Vulture’s Egg: The party has killed one too many of the king’s bullying berserks and now he’s all for making them outlaws. Then a crafty councillor suggests an “impossible quest” to rid the kingdom of troublesome PCs: they must find a golden vulture’s egg as a coming-of-age gift for the king’s only daughter. Only the trollwives of the deep forest know where such a thing may be found, but to charm the knowledge from their lips, PCs will need to evade a posse of monstrous husbands and fathers.

The party is directed to a remote temple complex guarded by a gorgon, a dire eagle, and an ogress diviner who’s already foreseen the PCs’ interference. Aid can be gleaned from the witch’s shackled thralls, but there’s one last challenge after they escape with her hoard: turned over to the king’s daughter, the egg hatches into a swiftly-growing golden serpent, which coils around her protectively and allows no one near. Soon word goes out: whoever slays the snake will win the princess’ hand in marriage.

Friends in High Places: A pair of rocs carry off the party, hoping to make the PCs food for their hatchlings. The intervention of a young stone giant helps defeat the monstrous birds; he demands the beaks and talons as proof of the deed, for he’s contesting rulership of a stone giant clan against villainous brothers. He asks the party for help in securing his rise to jarldom, promising riches and giantish allies as a reward.

The test of lordship is simple: whoever kills the greatest monster (can PCs suggest something better than rocs?), whoever argues most eloquently (bardic inspiration might help), and whoever has the winning animal in a beast fight (surely a druid in wild shape would have the advantage?). PCs who agree to help (or are carried off by the giant as unwilling thralls) need to avoid getting crushed by drunken revelers and must face both the stone giant’s brothers and their pets: a polar bear and an advanced dire wolf. Success brings a reward of giant-sized generosity and fame for heroes both cunning and strong.

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