The Magic Earth Campaign Gazetteer: Europe – The Vikings
The British Isles have a deep history and a rich cultural mosaic. Even though it is far smaller than Europe across the Channel, it has given rise to both powerful nations and some of the most powerful heroes and villains in the Known World.
Scandinavia – 850 A.D.
The lands of the Vikings comprise three loose coalitions of Viking clans; Norway, Sweden and Denmark. The current king of Sweden is Anund Uppsale (who rules from Old Uppsala), though this is disputed by his brother Bjorn at Hauge. Norway is divided up into a number of smaller petty kingdoms. The most powerful king in Norway is Halfdan the Black (no really!), he rules over Agder and has inherited Sogn as well as conquered Vingulmarken and half of Vestfold. Denmark’s undisputed ruler is the wise and crafty Horik I.
The Vikings are the Human inhabitants of Scandinavia. Dwarves live in great underground kingdoms beneath the craggy peaks of Norway and Sweden. Alfar can be found in small clan-holds in the forests of the remote fjords. Occasionally an Alfar and Viking will marry, the offspring are known as Alfblood and use the standard Half-Elf rules. Dwarves inhabitant many underground citadel-kingdoms deep beneath the mountains of Norway and Sweden. There are even hidden and mysterious underground villages of Svirfneblin (FR:RoF pg. 49), Duergar (FR:RoF pg. 14) and Urdunnir (FR:RoF pg. 20). Deep beneath the earth, deeper than even these races dwell, are the great and majestic cities of the Drow (also known as the Svartalfar). These darkly beautiful cities are the last mortal realms along the path to Nifleheim.
Alfar are most definitely elves but are not members of the Seelie or Unseelie Courts. Use the standard Grey Elf rules for Alfar. The Alfar don’t act very elven either, they have been known to grow facial hair and carouse and drink heavily just like their fellow Vikings. They revel in combat like a Dwarf and are considered almost barbaric by Faerie standards. Alfar have also done something unheard of amongst the Fey, they occasionally marry humans and raise children together.
Also found amongst the Vikings are the Trollborn, these large and powerful peoples are the offspring of Trolls and mortal women. Trolls of the Norse lands are not the classic D&D Trolls. They are more like a small Ogres or large Orcs. Trolls are fatally sensitive to sunlight, if they are ever exposed to the rays of the Sun they instantly turn to stone! Trollborn are not as sensitive but they still take 1hp of damage per hour in direct sunlight and they only ever heal 1 point of this damage per night of rest or per Cure spell. In all other respects they use the rules for Half-orcs with the bonus feat of Endurance. They also retain all the Survival skills of the standard Vikings.
NOTE: Due to the harsh environment and a society that is unforgiving of weakness the Vikings have highly-developed survival skills. Norwegians and Swedes begin the game with Survival (Mountains) (Glaciers) (High Seas). Danes begin with Survival (Swamps & Marshes) (High Seas).
The Vikings speak Old Norse, all Vikings with INT 10+ can understand and speak to Normans. The Vikings get bonus selections from all the lands they raid; Anglo-Saxon, Frankish, Old High German, Moorish, Eastern Latin (they never raid into Rome), Ancient Greek, Hebrew, Persian, Finnish, Egyptian, Arabic, Galatian, and all 3 Gaelic tongues. NOTE: I reserve the right to add more languages to this list as I expand the campaign details in the future. Trollborn and Alfblood also have the same language selections.
Alfar speak Draconic, Old Norse, and Alfar. Alfar with an INT 10+ can understand and speak Svartalf. They may select extra languages from Khazadic, Old High German, Finnish, Faerie, Irish Gaelic, Demonic, Jotun and Trollish.
Dwarves speak Khazadic, Old Norse, and Svirfnebli. All Dwarves with INT 10+ can understand and speak Urdunni and Duergar. Dwarves may select extra languages from Old High German, Finnish, Jotun, Trollish, Drow and Draconic.
Svirfneblin speak Svirfnebli, Khazadic and Drow. All Svirfneblin with INT 10+ can understand and speak Gnomish. They may select extra languages from Old Norse, Jotun, Trollish, Old High German, Finnish, Draconic, Urdunni, Duergar and Elemental.
Urdunnir speak Urdunni, Svirfneblin and Drow. All Urdunnir with INT 10+ can understand and speak Khazadic and Duergar. They may select extra languages from Old Norse, Jotun, Draconic, Trollish, Finnish and Elemental.
Duergar speak Duergar, Svirfneblin and Drow. All Duergar with INT 10+ can understand and speak Khazadic and Urdunni. They may select extra languages from Old Norse, Jotun, Trollish, Draconic, Elemental and Demonic.
Drow/Svartalfar speak Svartalf, Duergar, and Svirfneblin. Svartalfar with INT 10+ can understand and speak Alfar. They may select extra languages from Old Norse, Khazadic, Draconic, Elemental, Demonic, Finnish, Old High German and Jotun.
The Vikings worship the Norse deities exclusively, as do all the other races native to the Viking lands.
The Norse Gods (see Deities & Demigods pg. 163)
Cultural Class Alterations
Barbarian – Available.
Bard – Skald – Variant Bard replacement for all races from the Viking lands. Skalds do not gain access to spells but can use Bardic Music twice per day per level. Skalds are proficient in the Skeggox instead of the Rapier. Survival (Forest) and Riding (Horse) are class skills, Decipher Script and Spellcraft are cross-class skills. They also use D8 for hit dice.
Cleric – Available.
Druid – Not Native.
Fighter – Available.
Hexblade (CW pg. 5) – Available to worshippers of Loki only.
Monk – Not Native.
Paladin – Champion of Tyr – Replaces the standard Paladin. These Paladins don’t gain the ability to Lay on Hands because Tyr views healing powers a sign of weakness in battle. They also cannot Turn Undead since there are no Undead to speak of in the lands of the Vikings. To compensate the Champion starts with Weapon Focus (Skeggox) at 1st level. Champions also gain the Favoured Enemy ability of Rangers at 5th level. The Favour Enemy choices are as follows: Animal, Dragon, Giant, Humanoid (Dwarf, Elf, Goblinoid, Gnome, or Human), Magical beast, Monstrous Humanoid, Outsider (Evil Norse) or Vermin.
Ranger – Available.
Rogue – Available to Urdunnir, Alfar and Drow.
Scout (CA pg. 10) – Replaces Rogue for Vikings, Dwarves and Svirfneblin.
Spellthief (CA pg. 13) – Available to Svirfneblin, Drow and Alfar only.
Sorcerer – Warmage (CARC pg. 10) – Vikings are a warlike people, even their Mages. Warmages replace Sorcerers amongst them and the other races of the Viking lands.
Wizard – The Vikings have a far different tradition of Magic than the standard studious Mage.
Runecaster – Norse magic is derived from the control of the ancient Runic alphabet. The Runecaster learns the various combinations of letters to create all the standard spell effects but since it is an oral tradition he must remember all that he learns. Runecasters are limited to Spells Known as a Sorcerer. There is only one spell component to all Runecaster spells, his Runes. These are usually etched onto small clay or stone tablets and kept in a leather pouch. Runecasters start with the bonus feat, Combat Casting. Survival is also a class skill for them. Runecaster replace Wizards for all races that inhabit Viking lands. Runecaster may not specialize in a school of magic (with the exception of Svirfneblin which may choose to specialize in Illusion).
The Petty Kingdoms of Norway
Prestige Classes Available
Prestige Classes are available to a PC based on his or her culture of origin. Alfblood have access to any PrC available to either Vikings or Alfar. Trollborn have access to any PrC available to Vikings.
Berserk (D&D pg. 201) Available to Vikings and Alfar only.
Arcane Archer (DMG 3.5) Available to Alfar and Drow.
Arcane Trickster (DMG 3.5) Available to Alfar, Drow and Svirfneblin.
Dragon Disciple (DMG 3.5) Must converse with at least one dragon to be eligible for this PrC.
Dwarven Defender (DMG 3.5)
Battlerager (FR:RoF pg. 178) Dwarves and Urdunnir only.
Bladesinger (FR:RoF pg. 179) Alfar and Drow only.
Breachgnome (FR:RoF pg. 181)
Trollborn Warlord (FR:RoF pg. 184) Trollborn only. Use Orc Warlord rules.
Spellsinger (FR:RoF pg. 185) Alfar and Drow only.
Warrior Skald (FR:RoF pg. 186)
Avenging Executioner (CS pg. 24)
Battle Trickster (CS pg. 28) Gnomes, Svirfneblin, Drow and Alfar only.
Fortune’s Friend (CS pg. 38)
Magical Trickster (CS pg. 45) Gnomes, Svirfneblin, Drow and Alfar only.
Spellwarp Sniper (CS pg. 64) Drow and Alfar only.
Uncanny Trickster (CS pg. 67) Gnomes, Svirfneblin, Drow and Alfar only.
Champion of Sif (Gwynharwye) (BED pg. 56)
Sword of Righteousness (BED pg. 77) Available to all but Drow.
Divine Crusader (CD pg. 33) Available to all but worshippers of Loki.
Geomancer (CD pg. 41) Urdunnir and Svirfneblin only.
Stormlord (CD pg. 65) Special requirement changed to worshipper of Thor or Aegir.
Warpriest (CD pg. 74)
Runecaster (FRC pg. 51)
Fatespinner (CARC pg. 37)
Wayfarer Guide (CARC pg. 65) Svirfneblin and Gnomes only.
Wild Mage (CARC pg. 68) Alfar and Drow only.
Bear Warrior (CW pg. 36) Not available to Drow, Svirfneblin or Urdunnir.
Bladesinger (CW pg. 17) Alfar and Drow only.
Dark Hunter (CW pg. 20) Drow, Svirfneblin and Urdunnir only.
Darkwood Stalker (CW pg. 23) Alfar hunt Trolls.
Eye of Loki (Gruumsh) (CW pg. 31) Trollborn only.
Frenzied Berserker (CW pg. 34)
Gnome Giant-Slayer (CW pg. 36) Svirfneblin only.
Master Thrower (CW pg. 58)
Occult Slayer (CW pg. 66)
Rage Mage (CW pg. 72)
Reaping Mauler (CW pg. 75)
Spellsword (CW pg. 79) Alfar and Drow only.
Stonelord (CW pg. 81)
War Chanter (CW pg. 87)
Beastmaster (CA pg. 26)
Bloodhound (CA. pg. 28) Available to Svirfneblin and Drow only.
Dread Pirate (CA. pg. 39) Vikings and Alfar only.
Dungeon Delver (CA pg. 42) Drow, Dwarves, Urdunnir, and Svirfneblin only.
Exemplar (CA pg. 44)
Maester (CA pg. 56) Svirfneblin only.
Ollam (CA pg. 66) Dwarves and Urdunnir only.
Tempest (CA pg. 81)
Cultural Weapon Substitution & Restrictions
The following weapons are not found in the Viking Lands:
Crossbow (Any), Longbow (Any), Kukri, Rapier, Scimitar, Falchion, Glaive, Guisarme, Ranseur, Kama, Nunchaku, Sai, Siangham, Spiked Chain, Shuriken
The following cultural substitutes must be specified whenever a native takes Weapon Focus or Weapon Specialization. If he uses any other form of that weapon he does not gain the bonuses from his feats.
Krokspjot = Short Spear
Hoggspjot = Longspear
Atgeir = Glaive
Skeggox = Battleaxe
Seax = Shortsword
Troll Double-Skeggox = Orc Double Axe