Midgard

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Midgard is Wolfgang Baur's third party world and is older than you might think. Through Kobold Press, the rest of us are fortunate enough to play in it.

Baur (unsurprisingly perhaps, given his name) started this as a Germanic and Slavic fantasy world. But since he's got real talent, he grew it over time to include the fantasy kitchen sink of Lovecraftian horror, Arabian Nights, and Vikings among other things. As of D&D 5th Edition it's become quite notable, with tie-in products such as Tome of Beasts considered on par with official Wizards of the Coast publications.

Setting Summary[edit]

A representation of Midgard's Material Plane.

The world is a flat disc surrounded by the dragon-god Veles biting its own tail to keep the oceans from spilling out. Magical energy known as ley lines flows through the world, and magicians aware of their existence can tap into local sources of power to enhance their spells. These ley lines proved instrumental in the founding of civilization: the Egyptian knockoffs found a bigass ley line along a river which they built their cities along, the elves used them as teleportation networks to create a world-spanning empire, and some human magocracies used them to summon and develop Lovecraftian superweapons for war...which naturally plunged their kingdoms into a nightmarish hellscape. Great going, guys.

Midgard was originally a savage place, but some buff Nordic dudes found the way to becomes gods. That bastard Loki spilled the beans to his catgirl girlfriend Bast, allowing for other people to take the divine mantle themselves. Soon things got out of control, and the gods started killing each other to suck out each other's god-juice powers. Eventually the world-serpent slapped them around and set some ground rules. Ever since the gods wore masks, taking different forms in different cultures and obscuring their true number. As a result there's much speculation on which god is a mask of another, and where one begins and the other ends. Some are open secrets (the war god Perun is known as Thor in the Northlands) but some gods are sneaky and adopt entirely different portfolios.

Overall the world has many classic fantasy tropes, but with neat twists. The major city of Zobeck is a steampunk metropolis with a patron clockpunk deity, warforged knockoffs, true dragons are the nobility caste of a mighty empire who are invading everyone, and the last bastion of elves is now run by the half-elf and human aristocrats who outbred them. For villains you have the mythical Baba Yaga whose own dentures are an animated object which are actually smarter than her, a living primordial Margreve Forest home to all the twisted fairy tales of Grimm and Aesop's fame, and the tiefling Master of Demon Mountain who's heavily implied to be a direct or distant father figure of PC tieflings. A major sourcebook was made for the Southlands, Midgard's Africa/Arabia analogue, and the upcoming Brilliant East is its Oriental Adventures.

Crossroads[edit]

The geographic heartland, where Midgard's Germanic/Slavic influence is strongest. Is home to the steampunk city of Zobeck, the fairy tale Margreve Forest, a nation of gun-slinging dorfs, and a kingdom of man-hating amazon paladins.

Dark Kingdoms[edit]

These were once Crossroads nations, but a bunch of vampires and undead took over and now oppress the peasantry. They have trade relations with the gnome nation of Neimheim, whose king sold his people to devils in order to stay Bab Yaga's wrath. The most Dark Fantasy of the regions.

Rothenian Plains[edit]

The Eurasian Steppes. Filled with gypsies, Mongolian archers, centaurs, and a pseudo-Russian kingdom ruled by a crazy Tsar.

Dragon Empire[edit]

The Ottoman Empire, if Arabs and Turks were reptilian races. Midgard's dragons realized that sleeping around in hoards was counterproductive to wealth generation, so they combined into a larger kingdom so they can tax the tiny races and add their wealth to their hoards. Now that they got a taste of government, they now want to rule the world! The scaly races are the norm here, and humans and their ilk are low-caste civilians.

Southlands[edit]

Midgard's Africa, most known for its pseudo-Egyptian Kingdom of Nuria Natal whose animal-headed gods chill in their favorite cities. A group of Arabian traders sail the deserts in sandships, and further south are more classic African nations such as a jungle magocracy and magical Zulu warriors.

Seven Cities[edit]

Instead of fighting for loftier ideals, the people of this peninsula realized that war's just an excuse for people to plunder the losers. As a result they organized society along the lines of orderly mercenary skirmishes who gain and lose territory every season for the glory of the war god Mavros.

Wasted West[edit]

The shattered remnants of human magocracies who thought it'd be a swell idea to summon the Great Old Ones into the Material Plane. Now said eldritch gods are frozen in time from ancient rituals, looming over alien horizons. The few bastions of civilization are meager outposts or tyrannical kingdoms making hard decisions to prolong society.

Grand Duchy of Dornig[edit]

The former seat of the elven empire of Thorn. It's now mostly ruled by half-elf and human families jockeying for meager parcels of forest with a confusing array of land and inheritance laws. The Queen fell into a deep slumber, and the shadow fey are making inroads with forest colonies.

Northlands[edit]

VIKINGS! MEAD! GIANTS! This realm is as hardcore as the people it's based upon, where status is defined by martial ability and longships set sail for distant realms to raid and loot. It's home to an advancing glacier slowly consuming the land, as well as a nation of several thousand god-giants who by all rights should have conquered the region (they're CR 20+ beings) but they've fallen from grace and are depressed about the fact that Midgard is literally made of the slain corpse of their god.

Shadow Realm[edit]

The extraplanar realm beneath Midgard. It is a land of perpetual twilight, a dark mirror to the world above. The Shadow Fey are its most famous denizens, but is also home to an outpost of bearfolk warriors resisting the darkness and a lost legion of ghoul soldiers from the Dark Kingdoms.

Races[edit]

In Soviet Russia, kobold conquers you!
  • Humans: You know the drill.
  • Dragonborn: The soldiers of the Mharoti Empire. They began as ascended kobolds favored by their dragon masters, but became a race all their own. They serve as higher-ranking soldiers and administrators in peace-time. Also have subraces based around elements instead of colors, lack a breath weapon, have an innate spell, and a overall less-shitty statblock.
  • Dwarves: The dwarves hailed from the Northlands and had a thing for looting and pillaging, but some of their ancestors went elsewhere to pursue other vocations. The dwarves of the Ironcrag build big guns and airships, while the ones in the Southlands built the pyramids and clockwork constructs.
  • Elves: There's less than a thousand true elves in Midgard today, making them even more of a special snowflake if that's even possible. They ruled over a great empire that fell cuz of decadence, and the few remaining live in isolated forests. The drow are all but wiped out by ghouls, meaning that the Shadow Fey serve as the "evil elf" equivalent.
  • Gearforged: Warforged, but instead of being created wholly a living soul is transferred into a metal body. Also tend to be more steampunk in appearance.
  • Kobolds: The oppressed buttmonkey of the setting and company mascot, kobolds were enslaved by dwarves and forced into ghettos in human lands. The oppression and mistreatment serves as ample opportunity for the Mharoti Empire, who both promise liberation and a higher social standing if they help their invaders while also serving as a land of freedom and opportunity for them to one day visit.
  • Minotaurs: They are honorable seafaring warriors, much like Dragonlance minotaurs. Unlike Dragonlance, they retain their more monstrous ability to avoid getting lost, and as such all of their cities are confusing mazes to stymie enemy armies.
  • Ravenfolk: A race of thieves and troublemakers who the gods love to use as seers, and often inhabit the tallest buildings and roofs in cities as "rookeries." Often seen as having special connections as seers and messengers with Wotan (discount Odin) in the north and as master swordsmen and desert-dwelling mystics with Horus (no not that Horus) in the south.
  • Shadow Fey: Evil elves and the most numerous kind in Midgard. They live in the Shadow Realm between Midgard's two sides and worship the goddess of night and magic.
  • Minor Races: There are other playable races in Midgard, but are often relegated to certain regions or sourcebooks than being as widespread as the above. The most notable include the bearfolk, who are as awesome as they sound, and actual garden gnomes who lull you into a false sense of security with their silly red hats before sacrificing you to Lucifer in their forest homes. What? You want the full list? Okay...
    • Aasimar: Either born as celestial orphans of dead gods or mortals with celestial blood, they're pretty typical of most settings' Aasimar. Can take some alternate racial abilities to show off their heritage like getting 10ft of blindsight or getting to cast Gaseous Form once per long rest.
    • Alseid: Distant cousins of Midgard's centaurs, they're much like their cousins in being a blending of elf torso on a deer's body plus antlers. Automatically proficient with Stealth, Elvish, Shortbows, and Spears but have trouble with more humanoid-oriented architecture like manholes and ladders. Notable for having their one picture in one of the "Heroes" expansions be topless.
    • Bearfolk: Big, badass bearmen. Known for being extra passionate, loyal, and honest while at the same time being unpredictably violent and savage. Also known for essentially loaning themselves out to other families when they are kids, leading to some Winnie The Pooh comparisons.
    • Centaurs: Rothenian Plain raiders that have entire mobile cities composed of wagons and giant-shield walls. Different from the generic/Ravnica centaur for being both Large (albeit with a Medium-sized torso to balance things out) and, like their Elfy brethren, being of the Monstrosity type. When they reach their teens, they go out and become bandits for a few years before either coming home or going off on their own, leading many to stereotype them as raging, drunken assholes (which to be fair isn't too far off from the truth).
    • Darakhul: Bigger, badder, smarter ghouls that make up a good portion of the Blood Kingdom. Have several different subraces based on what race they were in life which give stat bonuses, their speed, their size, and bonus languages. Outside of their subraces, they get a +2 to Constitution, 60ft of Darkvision, a 1d6 Bite attack, Sunlight Sensitivity, the need to eat raw flesh once per day lest they gain a point of Exhaustion (which they can only remove by eating at least 30lb of meat), the ability to speak Darakhul, and resistance to certain life-saving spells like Revivify or Reincarnate, though Resurrection and True Resurrection brings you back as your original race. They also tend to look like Count Orlok from Nosferatu after a while, regardless of their original race.
    • Derro: Insane, somewhat dwarflike humanoids that inhabit the Underdark and certain cities in Midgard, Derro are a bit of a mystery. Not even the Derro themselves know their own history(their "historians" claim they do but such stories tend to not only change from person to person but from time to time as well) though some theorize they were originally humans and or dwarves driven mad by a little too much contact with the Great Old Ones in the Wasted West. Gets a +2 to Constitution and a +1 to Dexeterity, Superior Darkvision, Sunlight Sensitivity, resistance to charm and fear effects through their insanity (also you to get to roll on a few tables to determine quirks, kinda like the Tiefling or Aasimar appearance tables in earlier editions of the game), advantage on Constitution saving throws against spells, and the ability to speak Dwarvish and either Common or Undercommon.
    • Dhampirs: The half-undead/half-living results of the union between male vampires and human women. They're said to be charismatic but off-putting in an uncanny valley-sort of way. Are a bunch of brooding, lonely sops that either give into their baser natures or try to rise up against them, often banding together in groups following the Walking Crow edicts, often taking "Crow" as a surname in the process.
    • Dust Goblins: Goblins forever changed by the eldritch radiation given off by the imprisoned Old Ones, which they often worship, in the Wasted West, Dust Goblins are hard-core. Barely anything lives in the West yet the goblins still thrive like nothing's changed since their homeland got turned into a magical-themed Fallout wasteland. Gets a +2 to Dexterity and a +1 to Constitution, 60ft of Darkvision, advantage against being charmed or frightened much like the Derro, proficiency with Stealth and Survival, the ability to make creatures roll a Wisdom saving throw or be frightened until the end of their next turn after attacking while hidden, and the ability to speak Common and Goblin.
    • Gnolls: Pretty similar to their pre-5th Edition counterparts, Gnolls are lazy, cowardly assholes native to the Southlands of Midgard. They're matriarchal like real-world spotted hyenas, where even the lowest female on the proverbial totem pole is higher than the highest male. Male Gnolls who dislike their womenfolk lording over them often leave their packs and make up the bulk of Gnoll adventurers. Get some pretty nifty abilities related to their innately cowardly natures like adding an extra 10ft to their Disengage action and adding double your proficiency bonus to Intimidation rolls against obviously smaller/weaker targets. Are usually pretty devout followers of Anubis/Anu-Akma and Bastet, and are usually seen as guiding worshipers of the former into the afterlife as well as acting as temple guards.
    • Halflings: Either seen in the courts of Elves or on river-bound barges like in 4th edition, Halflings or Winterfolk as they're sometimes called are assumed to have been indentured to the Elves before shit hit the fan as even now they tend to defer to them or Elfmarked. All the standard subraces exist plus an extra one simply called the Winterfolk Halfling that gets a +1 to Constitution, recovers from all levels of exhaustion after a long rest, and can use their Wisdom modifier instead of their Intelligence modifier when making History and Religion checks. Pretty cool all things considered, especially since their picture in the Midgard Heroes Handbook has one riding a motherfucking snow-white sabertooth tiger like a horse.
    • Jinnborn: Kinda similar to genasi in a lot of ways, being descended from elementals called Jinn (no duh) that're like genies only much more powerful, Jinnborn are native to the deserts of Midgard where they follow paths called siratti based upon the 4 elements. These paths are chosen for them by Patron Jinn, oftentimes near-godly Jinn that like to muck around with their technicolor offspring. Like Jinn and Genies, Jinnborn often speak in riddles or half-truths but rarely lie. Gets a +2 to Constitution, 60ft of Darkvision, proficiency with Persuasion, a Siratti path that comes with an elemental language, and a choice between 2 subraces: Speaker and Shaper. Speakers get a +1 to Wisdom, have advantage on saving throws against being stunned, extreme environments, navigation, and getting lost as well as the ability to gain advantage on any saving throw or ability check/disadvantage on attack rolls against you a number of times equal to your Wisdom modifier per long rest. Shapers get +1 Strength, resistance against an element that corresponds to your siratti, and the ability to add a d6 of damage of your siratti choice equal to your Constitution modifier per long rest. Jinnborn also get Desert Dependent: where for every month you remain away from the desert, you must roll a DC15 Charisma saving throw or get inflicted with INDEFINITE MADNESS which is utter horseshit in every campaign that doesn't take place in the Southlands or Mharoti, making Jinnborn difficult to play outside of those places.
    • Kijani: Slender, green-skinned plant people from the Southlands (specfically the Yawchaka Jungle which is kinda like the Congo if it was on crack, meth, and a bit of ecstasy for good measure), Kijani start out as tiny ivy plants that symbiotically bond with a mammalian host like a human or a dwarf for about 10 years before coming out fully formed without harming their host/parent. Despite what you'd think, they absolutely HATE druids and to a lesser degree rangers as in the past a cadre of human druids had made contact with them before summoning a gigantic avatar of nature/jungle elemental and promptly wrecked the Kijani and their jungle before being brought down, killing half of them in the process. Because of this, they have a sort of racial PSTD that manifests itself as being able to add an extra d4 to an attack once per turn or add 2 to your AC as a reaction against attacks. As it stands, you get a +2 to Wisdom and a +1 to a ability score of your choice, 60ft of Darkvision, being of the Plant type, are immune to sleep effects, can cast speak with plants as a 3rd level spell once they reach 7th level, can speak Common and Sylvan, and get a proficiency in either Arcana, History, Nature, or Religion.
    • Lamias: The result of an ancient curse laid upon them by demons, Lamias are the iconic snakewomen(and men) you know and love. As a price for their ancestors being demon-worshiping dicks, modern Lamias have the unique quirk that they can't be creative in any way, even their artists just copy others to make their art. Also said to not age past their prime, staying beautiful their entire lives. Male Lamias are a thing but are outnumbered by their women by about 3 to 1 while the classic "lion-taur" Lamias also exist and the mere sight of them cause the serpent Lamias to go into a homicidal rage, though the latter doesn't get any player-stats. Speaking of stats, Lamias get a +2 to Strength and a +1 to Charisma, 60ft of Darkvision, being of the Monstrosity type, a 20ft swim speed and 20ft climb speed, proficiency with Deception and Intimidation, advantage against surprised/charmed enemies, advantage on saving throws and ability checks against being knocked prone (though you don't get bonuses from magical foot or leg-ware), and the ability to speak Common and Abyssal.
    • Lizardfolk
    • Mushroomfolk: Basically Myconids.
    • Orcs
    • Ramag: Mutated humans from the Southlands, marked by ape-like bodily proportions and long, fleshy tendrils in lieu of hair.
    • Ratfolk
    • Roachlings: Cockroach-tieflings. Least-loved of the setting's races, has racial rules for 3rd-4th Ed. (and some other systems), but nothing for 5e (yet).
    • Sahuagin
    • Satarre: Nihilistic, twisted reptilian humanoids from Midgard's Underdark who worship Nidhogg, the dragon that gnaws at the root of Yggdrasil and seeks to destroy everything.
    • Shade: Ghosts so determined to cling to life that they actually recreated physical bodies for themselves.
    • Tieflings
    • Tosculi: Giant humanoid wasps from the Southlands. Most are bound up in a hivemind that exists to obey a single queen, but some tosculi hatch without that trait, and these can flee to become adventurers.
    • Trollkin: Planetouched whose ancestry mingles human and various dark fey. Divided into two major strains; regular Trollkin are found all over the surface, whilst Midgard's equivalent to the Underdark is home to Dark Trollkin.
    • Werelions

Subclasses[edit]

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Since both Pathfinder and Dungeons & Dragons 5th Edition use a subclass system, the conversion from the former to the latter has resulted in Midgard amassing more than its fair share of setting unique subclasses. Most of these are concentrated in two books; the Midgard Heroes Handbook and Deep Magic, a compilation and revision of content previously scattered over 20 different smaller minibooks. The Midgard Worldbook also has a smattering of content in it.

Barbarian Primal Paths[edit]

Path of the Ancestors: Similar to 5e canon's Ancestral Guardian, this is a Barbarian who serves as a conduit for ancestor spirits. The resultant abilities are quite unique, however; Advantage on Wisdom saves against spells and magic, toss out a free Calm Emotions once per short rest, bonus Psychic damage to attacks whilst raging, and finally a permanent Freedom of Movement effect on themselves whilst raging. This can be found in the Midgard Heroes Handbook.

Bardic Colleges[edit]

College of Entropy: Also known as "Luck Stealers", these bards basically have a unique affinity for luck, which stems from their connection to "Chaos Magic" - aka, Midgard's personalized version of Wild Magic, so they use an alternative table to the PHB's Wild Mage. They start with the ability to screw other peoples' dice rolls over to pump up their own and some bonus skills, then can regain Bardic Inspiration by undergoing Chaos Surges, and finally can swap out their bardic spells freely in exchange for causing a Chaos Surge when they do. This can be found in the Midgard Heroes Handbook, and also in Deep Magic.

Greenleaf College: An elf-invented school that is basically a combination of the bardic framework with druidic tree magic. They gain bonus Druid spells, are better healers, gain the Land Stride feature, and can spend Bardic Inspiration to cure diseases and poisons. This can be found in the Midgard Heroes Handbook, and also in Deep Magic.

College of Wyrdsingers: Embracing the concept of "the wyrd", meaning "fate" or "destiny", these are basically a variant of the College of Valor bard, embracing and championing courage as the greatest of virtues. This makes them extra skilled at pumping up their allies, but also gives them a notable edge over other bards in the toughness department Found in Deep Magic.

Cleric Domains[edit]

Apocalypse: Representing gods who want to lay waste to all things. Lash out with Vicious Mockery, spend Channel Divinity to blast people with necrotic damage or let you distinguish truth from lies, and finally gain Resistance to Acid, Fire and Poison damage. This can be found in the Midgard Heroes Handbook, and also in Deep Magic.

Beer: Gods with this domain tend to be beloved figures who champion partying and companionship. They start with a natural a talent for making booze in their downtime, as well as the ability to create a courage-boosting magical beer in combat, and then gain supernatural fear-battling powers and a number of damage resistances. This can be found in the Midgard Heroes Handbook, and also in Deep Magic.

Cat: Yeah, this is basically the portfolio for deities of cats and catfolk. Taking this subclass makes you more catlike, complete with turning you into a non-insane werecat as its ultimate ability. This can be found in the Midgard Heroes Handbook, and also in Deep Magic.

Clockwork: One of Midgard's most notable elements is the setting's incorporation of clockpunk magitek, and this is the clerical version of the clockwork magic user. It gives you vastly increased tinkering skills, protection from enemy clockworks, the ability to make your clockwork minions, and finally some construct-like resistances, as well as the ability to freely swap your race to gearforged. This can be found in the Midgard Heroes Handbook.

Darkness: Pretty self-explanatory, the emphasis on darkness not necessarily having to be the province of an evil god makes this a lot like the Twilight domain from Tasha's Cauldron. It gives you darkvision, the ability to create zones of magical freezing shadow, and ultimately animates your shadow as a living shield. This can be found in the Midgard Heroes Handbook, and also in Deep Magic.

Dragon: You worship one or more of the Dragon Gods, or the very concept of dragonness. Free Arcana proficiency and resistance to fear, the ability to charm reptiles, spending Channel Divinity to auto-make saves and emulating a dragon's Fearful Aura are all part of the package with this one. This can be found in the Midgard Heroes Handbook, and also in Deep Magic.

Hunger: Despite being flavored in a ay that this could stand in for an Ambition domain, mechanically it's all about eating shit. Increased cooking proficiency, magical bite attacks, resistance to poison/disease, and the ability to induce insane, cannibalistic hunger in anybody nearby. This can be found in the Midgard Heroes Handbook, and also in Deep Magic where, weirdly, it was not moved to the villainous options section.

Hunting: Pretty self-explanatory what this Domain is all about. Lot of ranger bonus spells, free bow proficiencies, and increased stealth and stalking capacities. This can be found in the Midgard Heroes Handbook, and also in Deep Magic.

Justice: Because you didn't want to just play an Oath of Devotion Paladin. It basically turns you into a Paladin-lite; free weapon & armor proficiency, immunity to fear, magically track down criminals, and boost your social stats when making checks relating to justice and the law. This can be found in the Midgard Heroes Handbook, and also in Deep Magic.

Labyrinth: This is the Minotaur clerical domain, with not a lot of lore beyond that. You gain increased navigation skills, can induce confusion, and finally can cast the Maze spell on people you don't like. This can be found in the Midgard Heroes Handbook, and also in Deep Magic.

Lust: This Domain represents deities very firmly focused on earthly pleasures and physical sensuality. Despite the obvious comparison for the average fa/tg/uy, Lust gods aren't inherently evil, and in fact are as likely to be affable party animals or sensual healers as they are straight-up hedonists. Features-wise, this is basically the clerical enchanter, with a lot of focus on feature-based mind-control. Oh, and a Psychic damage Divine Strike. This Domain appears in the Midgard Worldbook, and also in Deep Magic.

Moon: Not a lot of confusion about what this one does. Feature-wise, it revolves heavily around operating at night, but it lets you create various kinds of magical dim light that do shit like inflict cold damage or make your weapons more lethal against therianthropes. This can be found in the Midgard Heroes Handbook, and also in Deep Magic.

Mountain: Whilst obviously a dwarf-prominent domain, this also represents any kind of deity who inhabits the mountains or challenges his followers to battle against adversity and win. Boosts your survivability in mountain environments, including making you and your buddies better climbers. The most powerful ability is the ultimate one, which lets you summon avalanches to crush your foes. This can be found in the Midgard Heroes Handbook, and also in Deep Magic.

Ocean: It's basically the Elemental Domain, Water Edition; you know what this does - free trident & net proficiencies, augmented swimming, water breathing, and the ability to cover yourself in scaly skin as natural armor. This can be found in the Midgard Heroes Handbook, and also in Deep Magic.

Prophecy: This is basically the Cleric equivalent of the Diviner, but with a surprisingly novel power set. Free History and Insight proficiencies, the ability to burn Channel Divinities to boost your walking speed or retcon an action you took, and finally the ultimate feature "It Was Foretold" - which gives you permanent Advantage on Dex saves, Insight and Perception checks, as well as Resistance to Fire, Poison and Psychic damage. This can be found in the Midgard Heroes Handbook, and also in Deep Magic.

Speed: It's all about the motion for gods and clerics of this domain. You get a free passive boost to your speed, free Acrobatics and Insight proficiencies, can Channel Divinity to boost anybody's speed, can add +5 to your Dexterity modifier for a turn 1/day, and finally can spend Channel Divinity to cast Time Stop. This can be found in the Midgard Heroes Handbook, and also in Deep Magic.

Time: The clerical Chronomancer, able to bend and manipulate time to their advantage. Their features give them a lot of very powerful buffs, letting them modify Initiative in various ways, letting them boost attack & defense rolls, making them increasingly impossible to surprise, and finally adding Foresight and Time Stop to the cleric's spell list. Found in Deep Magic.

Travel: All about getting up and going places, this domain largely revolves around the "overland travel" and traveling skill check portions of exploration. Bonus traveling skill and tool proficiencies, using Channel Divinity to remove Exhaustion (which means the Berserker barbarian might no longer suck so much), shorten overland travel time, and finally the ultimate ability; ignore difficult terrain and Resist Fire and Cold. This can be found in the Midgard Heroes Handbook, and also in Deep Magic.

Void: The stand-in for the "Cthulhu Mythos cult magus" archetype, but also doubling as an Outer Space themed domain. Free proficiency in Arcana, Intimidate and Navigator's Tools (because astronomer's tools aren't a thing in 5e), increased aptitude with Int skills, the ability to use Wisdom modifier for Int skills, Channel Divinity to inflict madness, and ultimately you can make a mini black hole 1/day. This can be found in the Midgard Heroes Handbook, and also in Deep Magic.

Winter: As you can probably guess, this revolves around boosting your ability to survive in cold environments and increasing your effectiveness with cold damage. Found in Deep Magic.

Druidic Circles[edit]

Circle of Oaks: Druids of this Order focus on drawing on the power of the trees. They can Tree Step, Wild Shape into a pseudo-Treant, and animate trees to aid them. Found in Deep Magic.

Circle of Owls: This is an Order of druidic spies, emulating the senses and sneakiness of the owl to unearth secrets and assassinate those who threaten nature. They gain a bunch of Diviner bonus spells, and their features are divided between stealth-boosting and spying augmentation. Found in Deep Magic.

Circle of Roses: The diplomancers of druidkind, the Order of Roses uses floral magic to sway minds to their way of thinking. In addition to a bunch of Enchanter bonus spells, their features revolve around their ability to burn Wild Shape uses to instead emit a mind-controlling sweet scent. Found in Deep Magic.

Circle of the Spirits: This is a druid who focuses on communing with the spirits indigenous to their land, usually by constructing monoliths or shrines or other places to weaken the barrier between the fleshly and spirit worlds. They start with a free familiar, can power up a spell once per encounter, can cheat death once per day, and ultimately can assume a spirit form that grants them increased mobility and defenses. This subclass is found in both the Midgard Heroes Handbook, where it's called the Circle of the Stones, and also in Deep Magic. The rename probably came about because the Circle of the Stones suggests more of an earth elementalist or at least the druidic version of the Geomancer.

Fighter Martial Archetypes[edit]

Clanking Mercenary: This represents a member of the Clanking Legion, which is made up half of gearforged and half of humanoids who can push their bodies to the point of keeping up with the machines. Gains the ability to tinker with their arms and armor to improve it temporarily, and a number of features that augment their toughness in various ways. This can be found in the Midgard Heroes Handbook.

Edjet: Representing the martial traditions of the Mharoti Empire, the Edjet specializes in fighting with a spear and a versatile weapon, and is basically a straight-up tank of a fighter. This can be found in the Midgard Heroes Handbook.

Ghost Knight: Thematically, this is a variant cavalier largely associated with the living auxiliaries to the undead armies of Morgau and Doresh. They gain a free undead steed loyal to them, some undead-like defensive features, and finally the ability to make their steed ghostly as they ride it so they can literally ride through walls. This can be found in the Midgard Heroes Handbook.

Griffon Knight: Another variant cavalier, this one revolving around scoring your own pet griffon and riding it into battle. As awesome as this sounds, like any cavalier, it can be problematic if your campaign revolves heavily around delving into dungeons. This can be found in the Midgard Heroes Handbook.

Prescient Knight: This is effectively a variant Eldritch Knight, one based on the Diviner and/or Chronomancer instead of the Warmage. The share the same basic spellcasting rules as the Eldritch Knight, but draw their spells from the Divination and Temporal schools, and their unique features give them increased sensory awareness, the Evasion feature, bonuses from Action Surge, and ultimately the ability to make a reaction every turn rather than just 1/round. Found in Deep Magic.

Shieldbearer: If the Edjet is tanky, then the Shieldbearer is tankiness incarnate. Their entire schtick is that they master the shield, improving their defenses until they are practically invulnerable. This can be found in the Midgard Heroes Handbook.

Sword-Dancer: A lightly armored blade-wielding fighter specialized in mobility and agility. Taking this subclass means you get to be more mobile than practically anyone else, whilst also cutting throwing whatever gets within reach of you like a runaway thresher. This can be found in the Midgard Heroes Handbook.

Monastic Traditions[edit]

Ironically, the Monk is the only class without Midgard-specific subclasses thus far.

Paladin Oaths[edit]

Oath of the Annihilator: A Blackguard archetype, representing the Paladin (well, Antipaladin) counterparts to the Clerics of Apocalypse. This is an (un)holy warrior who believes that the world requires balance that necessitates the culling of the weak and the destruction of the old so that it may be replaced by the new. They are, of course, devotees of gods of chaos, destruction and war. Their abilities all revolve around killing things and breaking shit better. This Oath can be found in Deep Magic.

Oath of the Giving Grave: A Blackguard archetype, this is a Paladin (well, Antipaladin) determined to seeking immortality through the powers of necromancy. They're not necessarily evil, in fact one of their core tenets is basically "the world is shit, so we need to be immortal so we'll be able to work at actually fixing it to a meaningful extent", but they are ruthless, driven and take a very "ends justify the means" approach to life. They get a number of necromancer spells (plus a few other "black magic" themed spells), enhanced abilities for commanding the undead, regeneration, and magic resistance. This Oath can be found in the Midgard Worldbook.

Oath of Radiance: Devoted to the god Khors, these are paladins specialized in hunting down undead and creatures touched by the Shadow Realm. All their powers revolve around burning dark shit with holy light. This can be found in the Midgard Heroes Handbook, and also in Deep Magic.

Oath of Thunder: Devoted to Perun, these paladins are surprisingly prone to being women. Thematically, they're basically your Oath of Devotion paladins, but faster, more aggressive, and with a lot more lightning-related goodies. This can be found in the Midgard Heroes Handbook, and also in Deep Magic.

Ranger Archetypes[edit]

Griffon Scout: This is basically the elven ranger version of the fighter's Griffon Knight; a mounted ranger whose features revolve around fighting from the back of a fey-typed griffon steed they gain as a free class feature. Found in Deep Magic.

Vampire Slayer: ...What? You can't tell from the name? For this subclass, it's all about hunting vampires. This can be found in the Midgard Heroes Handbook, and also in Deep Magic.

Zobecker Scout: An elite warrior order from Zobeck, these rangers are as adept in the city as other rangers are in the wild, and also get to make their own alchemical weapons to use in battle.

Roguish Archetypes[edit]

Duelist: Thematically, this is all but identical to the Swashbuckler, but the Midgard version has a unique array of mechanics, including having a list of selectable techniques, ala the Battle Master Fighter's Maneuvers. This can be found in the Midgard Heroes Handbook.

Fixer: A socially orientated rogue, this represents the "go between" rogues; the guys who know guys who know guys, the setters-up, the deal-makers and connection-forgers. As a result, this subclass's features largely revolve around the Social pillar of the game, although they do gain a free reaction-fueled move when approached by enemies and the ability to potentially evade a killing strike once per day. This can be found in the Midgard Heroes Handbook.

Whisper: Basically the Shadowdancer; a rogue imbued with Shadow Magic that manifests not as spellcasting abilities like an Arcane Trickster, but instead gives them some innate shadow-themed magical features. This can be found in the Midgard Heroes Handbook.

Sorcerous Origins[edit]

Ironically, given that Pathfinder arguably did sorcerers better than 5e did, there aren't too many Sorcerous Origins unique to Midgard.

Aristocratic: Sorcerers of this type are "racial paragons", which mostly is represented by giving them unique bonus spells if they are one of the PHB races. They get a grabbag of features that generally just make them stronger sorcerers all around, with little theme deeper than that; absorbing enemy spells to recharge spell slots, diminished metamagic costs for spells of a race-determined school, buffing Charisma checks and empowering spells. Found in Deep Magic.

Boreal Bloodline: In case it's not obvious, this is the "Ice Elementalist" subclass. Boosted damage with ice spells, immunity to environmental cold, icewalking, resistance to cold damage that later upgrades to immunity, diminished metamagic costs for ice spells, and the ability to spend sorcery points to enter a "Winter's Form". Found in Deep Magic.

Elemental Essence: The long-missing and oft-fan-created Elementalist subclass. As is usually the case, you have to pick which of the four classic elements you are aligned to, which shapes your features, which in turn revolve around making you more like an elemental. Found in Deep Magic.

Farseer: The sorcerous equivalent of a Diviner. Free proficiency in Insight and History, heightened Dodge abilities, ask the DM a single Yes/No question once per day, gain a bunch of defensive boosts by de-synching from time for a short period, and finally the ability to grant yourself and allies advantage on attack rolls or saving throws. Found in Deep Magic.

Mazeborn: The iconic sorcerer for minotaurs, this can be taken by other races in which case it usually implies minotaur ancestry. It basically buffs your direction-finding sense and gives you minotaur-like physical abilities, though the affinity for psychic damage and disorientating aura abilities are also useful. This can be found in the Midgard Heroes Handbook.

Shadow: Hands down the most redundant of Midgard's subclasses, this is thematically identical to the Shadow bloodline from later 5e books. The big difference is that you don't get a "shadow hound", but instead can cast an evil eye, are resistant to illusions, and can spend sorcery points to cast Blur and Mirror Image. This can be found in the Midgard Heroes Handbook, and also returns in Deep Magic.

Serophage: This is your Blood Magic sorcerer; somebody who can manipulate their own blood and the blood of others to their advantage. Serophages are resistant to bludgeoning damage, can sacrifice health to power up their magic, can draw blood from slain humanoids to fashion temporary magical armor and projectile weapons, and ultimately gain the ability to leech blood from others to restore themselves. This Origin showed up in the Midgard Worldbook, and also in Deep Magic.

Warlock Patrons[edit]

The Frozen One: Your patron is a powerful elemental being of ice and snow. Feature-wise, it essentially turns you into Iceman from Marvel Comics; a natural icy shield to ward off damage, creating slippery paths of ice in your wake, gaining immunity to cold and becoming too slick to touch, and finally being able to freeze a foe with a wintery blast. Found in Deep Magic.

The Genie Lord: Another magical archetype that WotC has actually already done, but not entirely identical. You still pick a specific genie species and get elemental bonus spells based on this choice, but the big focus is on an elemental token that you can use to absorb and later redirect elemental energies. You also get the power to make a minor pseudo-Wish (Advantage on a roll) once per encounter, and finally you can assume a Genie-like form that lets you fly, gives you magic resistance, and makes you simultaneously immune to an elemental damage and do bonus damage of that element with your attacks. This can be found in the Midgard Heroes Handbook, and also in Deep Magic.

The Great Machine: This is the second of the three clockpunk-based archetypes for Midgard - ironically, Kobold Press never did a Clockwork Magic sorcerer, so that's something WotC beat them to the punch on. The features here are a real grabbag; a minor bit of personal time rewinding, rerolling an attack once per encounter, immunity to mental assaults, and the ability to deliver a powerful mind whammy yourself. This can be found in the Midgard Heroes Handbook.

The Light Eater: Since the Plane of Shadow and its denizens are a big part of the Midgard mythos, naturally they had to include a Warlock who signs up with the powers-that-be of this realm of ultimate darkness. Warlocks with this subclass can blind enemies, reflexively teleport attackers away, can reflect fear-inducing attacks back at their source, and create shadowy minions. This can be found in the Midgard Heroes Handbook.

The Sibyl: The Warlock Diviner, touched by a patron who has a deep connection to fate or time travel. They gain Vicious Mockery as a bonus cantrip, can stun a foe for free 1/encounter, gain increased AC when wearing light/no armor, and can mega-charge a psychic damage attack 1/day. Found in Deep Magic.

Wizard Arcane Traditions[edit]

For whatever reason, Midgard is full of variant Wizards. The Deep Magic hardcover book even presents option rules to let a Wizard advance in two subclasses simultaneously. Now, they pay the price for this of not being able to get the full assortment of features from either, they basically mix and match them, but still...

Most of these subclasses are found in both the Midgard Heroes Handbook and in Deep Magic; where this happens, in the former, they are often simply named as their magical school, whilst Deep Magic gives them a "practitioner based" rename. For example, Entropy Wizard in MHH and Entropist in DM.

Alkemancer: A wizard devoted to uniting the principles of magic and alchemy into a single greater whole, with a focus on spiritual transmutation. Whilst similar to transmuters, alkemancers regard those wizards as too reliant on brute force, as opposed to unlocking the deeper mysteries of the six fundamental essences, which are kind of the alchemical version of the elements: brimstone, lead, quicksilver, quintessence, salt, and void salt. As a result, Alkhemancy spells resemble a blending of transmutation, necromancy and conjuration. Mechanically, alkemancers gain increased aptitude with alchemy, including the ability to make common alchemical items, the ability to supercharge specific spells by using the specific fundamental essence as a material component (brimstone makes fire spells poisonous, for example), and the ability to create elixirs, oils philters, and potions, culminating in their ability to make six legendary magical tonics. Found in Deep Magic.

Angelic Scribe: These wizards are a kind of variant conjurer who fashion sigils that allow them to draw the power of archangels to imbue themselves. The core of the class is a system of selectable level-gated "Seals", which represent the specific sigils of specific archangels, with other class features largely enhancing these seals or otherwise drawing on the "invoke angelic power" theme, such as being able to create warding seals. This can be found in the Midgard Heroes Handbook, and also in Deep Magic.

Blood Mage: Simple and self-explanatory; wizards who mess around with blood. They gain resistance to poison and disease, can scry on creatures by consuming their blood, can absorb poison and diseases into the body to later weaponize against others, and ultimately can throw around free slows and hastes by manipulating peoples' blood-flow. Can be found in the Midgard Worldbook, and also in Deep Magic.

Clockwork: The last of the three clockwork magic archetypes. These clockpunk technomancers are naturally better at using the Animate Construct spell, can shape metal with their touch, temporarily transform into a living golem, and ultimately can charm constructs. This can be found in the Midgard Heroes Handbook... which is strange, considering that clockwork magic shows up in the Deep Magic compilation.

Doom Croaker: Invented by the ravenfolk of Midgard's northlands, this is a variant Diviner focused on more "Nordic" flavor of magic; they retain the Divination Savant feature, but can sketch Alarm as a rune, gain Glyph of Warding for free and can cast it without a spell slot 1/day, gain Clairvoyance as a bonus spell and can do the same thing, can force the target of their spells to reroll their save 1/encounter, gain Legend Lore for free, can reroll their first failed death saving throw, and their first death results in them reincarnating as a ravenloft 1 week later. This can be found in the Midgard Heroes Handbook.

Doomsayer: Despite the similarity in names, this is actually an entirely separate thing to the Doom Croaker. Doomsayers are basically the edgelord evoker archetype, totally focused on using their magic to destroy things. As a result, all of their features revolve around augmenting their ability to kill shit with spells. Found in Deep Magic.

Dragon Masks: Walking a path between the draconic sorcerer and an elementalist wizard, wizards on this tradition focus on the ability to invoke spiritual aspects of dragons, granting them access to a specific set of boons. The default aspect is a draconic "mask", which manifests as a ghostly dragon's head overlapping the wizard's own head. This is then followed by the Dragon's Heart, Wings and finally its Tail - you can only have one aspect manifested at once, unless you take a feat. This can be found in the Midgard Heroes Handbook, and also in Deep Magic, where it's renamed the Dragon Mage.

Elementalist: Simple and self-explanatory. You have to pick which of the four elements you are attuned to, and gain increased buffs with that element. Also, similar to the Warlock's Invocations system, you can choose a number of bonus subclass features called "Elemental Masteries" as you level up. This can be found in the Midgard Heroes Handbook, and also in Deep Magic.

Elven High Magic: As the name suggests, this is an elf-created subclass that focuses on how their longevity and indifference to sleep gives them a greater affinity for ritual magic. The features of this subclass are all about the rituals; you can learn ritual spells more easily, you can learn ritual spells that aren't normally Wizard spells, your ritual spells are more powerful, and you can even make rituals become permanent. This can be found in the Midgard Heroes Handbook - weirdly, despite a section on Elven High Magic in the Deep Magic book, the subclass isn't there.

Entropist: The wizardly version of the Wild Mage archetype, and sharing the same "Chaos Surge" table as the College of Entropy Bard. Most of its abilities have a "high risk, high reward" theme, offering you power (gain advantage or reroll some spell damage dice) at the cost of having to roll on the Chaos Surge table. You also gain random damage resistances when you cast a Chaos spell (you can try to gain control over the result, but this causes a Chaos Surge), and finally your ultimate ability lets you refresh an expended Entropist subclalss feature whenever you experience a CHaos Surge. This can be found in the Midgard Heroes Handbook.

Geomancer: No, despite the name, this isn't an Earth Elementalist. Rather, this is a wizard who focuses on tapping into and drawing power from the ley lines, which are currents of magical energy that run all over Midgard. Naturally, its subclass features are all about squeezing the most benefit out of linking to a leyline, and you get no use from them if you aren't within reach of a leyline. This can be found in the Midgard Heroes Handbook.

Illuminator: A wizard who studies light, darkness and the interplay between, most readily expressed through studying the stars themselves. Sometimes likened to an elementalist who simultaneously wields light and darkness, though their spells have much in common with divination, illusion and necromancy. You can study the night sky for omens, your spells are more powerful when cast in dim or no light, illusions linger even after you stop concentrating them, and finally you can study the night sky to gain a specific boon you can tap based on which of four celestial events - a comet, a conjunction, an eclipse or a nova - that you focus on. This can be found in the Midgard Heroes Handbook, and also in Deep Magic.

Master of Fiends: This Conjurer variant focuses exclusively on binding and summoning fiends, either devils or demons. They gain a number of bonus spells based on this specialization, can trade spell slots for spell damage boosts, gain increased defenses against fiends and angels, have increased proficiency with the Magic Circle spell, and their summoned fiends are hardier. The downside is that their souls are forfeit to their dark allies, which makes them much harder to raise from the dead. Found in Deep Magic.

Necrophage: A variant necromancer who studies and masters the unique ways that necromantic energies can be harvested and utilized through committing cannibalism. They can summon an undead familiar and gain a number of different unique bonuses whenever they commit an act of cannibalism. This can be found in the Midgard Heroes Handbook, and also in Deep Magic.

Ring Warden: Developed by Midgard's dwarves, the Ring Warden is a wizard who focuses on mastering the way rings can be used to shape and control magic. Their iconic feature is a ring-staff; a staff banded and otherwise adorned with as many rings as possible. This staff augments the ring warden's spellcasting damage, and can eventually allow the warden to benefit from a third magical ring at one time. The ring warden also gains a unique affinity for crafting rings, both in terms of tool proficiencies and the ability to make a number of different magical rings, and can also store a spell in a ring taken from their ring-staff before giving that ring to somebody else, so they can use the spell when they need it. This can be found in the Midgard Heroes Handbook, and also in Deep Magic.

Time Keeper: It's a Chronomancer. What is it to say? They get their own unique mana system, called "Temporal Points", which can be spent to buff the wizard in various ways and cast the Extend Spell metamagic. They also gain a heightened affinity for the Haste spell. Found in Deep Magic.

Void Speaker: A practitioner of Void Magic, Midgard's equivalent to Cthulhu Mythos magic based around the sinister darkness of outer space and the mind-blasting creatures that dwell there. The Void Speaker basically gains access to a unique and extra-nasty set of verbal components as they level up, letting them do shit like impose disadvantage to saves against their spells, curse somebody out so hard they take necrotic damage, whammy two foes for the price of one spell, and create areas of soul-sapping darkness. Can be found in the Midgard Worldbook.

White Necromancer: Hearkening back to old, long-forgotten D&D lore about necromancy being divided into White, Gray and Black, this is a non-evil counterpart to the necromancer focused on protection and healing. As in, most of its features buff or heal allies in some way, though it also gains the "White Necromancer" feature that turns normally mindless undead mooks into sapient creatures that choose to serve you, and so might linger for prolonged periods if you can convince them the need is great. Found in Deep Magic.

System[edit]

Originally a 90's homebrew and in magazine articles during the 3rd Edition era, Midgard's been converted to quite a few systems.

As of 2019 there's support for 3rd through 5th Edition D&D, Pathfinder 1st Edition, 13th Age, Fantasy AGE, and Swords & Wizardry. Currently, most of the products being made now are for 5th Edition, with other systems receiving scant support beyond a single conversion book and maybe a Bestiary. Fortunately for Pathfinder fans, there's a huge backlog of material you can use due to the system's ties to 3.X.

Also, back in the late '90s, Midgard was made into a Civilization II scenario and released as part of the Fantastic Worlds expansion pack.

External Links[edit]

Third Party Dungeons & Dragons Campaign Settings
Basic D&D: Wilderlands of High Fantasy
AD&D: Kingdoms of Kalamar
3rd/3.5 Edition: Avadnu - Blue Rose - Dawnforge - Diamond Throne - Dragonmech
Dragonstar - Golarion - Iron Kingdoms - Kingdoms of Kalamar
Larisnar - Midgard - Midnight - Ptolus - Rokugan - Scarred Lands
Spellslinger - Wilderlands of High Fantasy - World of Farland
4th Edition: Kingdoms of Kalamar - Midgard - Midnight - World of Farland
5th Edition: Arkadia - Askis - Black Iron - Blue Rose - Brancalonia
Chronicles of Aeres - Fallen Camelot - Grim Hollow
Humblewood - Iron Kingdoms - Midgard - Mists of Akuma
Numenera - Odyssey of the Dragonlords - Primeval Thule
Ptolus - Scarred Lands - Seas of Vodari - Svilland
Thrones & Bones - Vast Kaviya - World of Farland