Runecairn Wardensaga: Life After Ragnarok

Carve your own fate in this 2-player Norse fantasy Soulslike TTRPG.

Runecairn Wardensaga: Life After Ragnarok
Runecairn Wardensaga Remastered. Vibrant blue and magenta, burning Viking warrior wielding two swords and surrounded by the charred and yearning dead. Art by CROM.

What is Runecairn?

Runecairn is a Norse fantasy tabletop roleplaying game written and designed by Colin Le Sueur and inspired by games like Dark Souls and Elden Ring. Based on lightweight new school revolution (NSR) systems Into the Odd and Cairn, Runecairn is designed for 2 players, one GM (the Warden) and one player (the Adventurer).

Runecairn Wardensaga Remastered is an 84-page full-colour hardcover filled with black and white and colour illustrations depicting the Norse fantasy world of the Nine Realms.

Two page spread from Runecairn Wardensaga Remastered

This book contains everything you need to run the game, from a quick one-shot, short dungeon delve, or epic campaign, including:

  • Streamlined d20 roll-under rules based on Cairn and Into the Odd.
  • Soulslike mechanics such as resurrecting at bonfires, respawning monsters, and dynamic combat.
  • Quickstart dungeon crawl adventure Beneath the Broken Sword, perfect for new GMs and players.
  • Solo play with a rune-based oracle.
  • Delve generator for randomly creating dark fantasy dungeons.
  • Drop-in additional players for jolly cooperation or player-vs-player invasions.

Choose between the standard CROM cover or the fully painted, wraparound cover from Annemieke van Barlingen (Blue Fern Arts).

Runecairn Wardensaga variant cover. Vibrant painting of a shieldmaiden with dark skin and black hair overlooking a valley. Art by Annemieke van Barlingen.

Remastered is an updated and refreshed version of the original Runecairn: Wardensaga, published in 2022.

What’s new in Wardensaga Remastered?

  • Sleek new layout, making it clearer to read and play.
  • Tightened up and clarified mechanics, to better convey to new players and GMs.
  • Brought in new mechanics introduced in the Runecairn Bestiary like toxic and dismembered status effects.
  • Provided answers to common questions like “how do I increase mead flask sips?”, “what do rare items mean?”, and “where should I place bonfires when playing solo?”.
  • Brilliant new colour and texture for the illustrations, alongside all new illustrations like the dwarf and lindworm.
  • Typo and corrections pass to squash those bugs once and for all.

Unlocked Stretch Goals

Runecairn: Into the Nine Realms. Colourful and stylised cover depicting an enormous green tree with a red serpent wrapped around it. Art by Norm Konyu.

Runecairn: Into the Nine Realms is a collection of 1-page dungeons for Runecairn, perfect for running as one-shots or dropping into an ongoing campaign, with art from Felipe Faria.

Into the Nine Realms in PDF has been unlocked for all digital backers and the printed zine has been unlocked for all physical backers.

From the Designer

First and foremost, Runecairn is a love letter to Dark Souls. Starting life as my version of a Dark Souls TTRPG, I took inspiration from Norse myths and legends in Icelandic Sagas like the Poetic Edda, Prose Edda, and Voluspá, along with the more contemporary representations of Norse gods in American Gods, which shows how belief changes gods over time and how all myths are malleable.

Mechanically, Runecairn is closest to Cairn, with me bringing my love of crunch to make combat more tactical and dynamic, and closer to an actual Soulslike. Working on Runecairn gave me enough experience to write for the official Dark Souls RPG, which was a dream come true!

Runecairn Wardensaga Remastered is live on Kickstarter until February 22 2024 and available for pre-order after.