Runecairn Wardensaga Remastered is Live on Kickstarter

Runecairn Wardensaga Remastered is Live on Kickstarter


Strap on your bearded axe and linden wood shield, delve into the forsaken barrow and cleanse the draugr within. They will overwhelm you at first so prepare to die. But when you wake up at the bonfire, you’ll know what to expect for your next attempt. Parry their attacks, disarm them, and hack them to pieces. Defeat the undead within and claim the soul remnant they protect.

Death is not the end.

Download the free Quickstart and create a dynamic Viking adventurer now!

What Is Runecairn?

Overview Spread

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).

What's In the Book?

Cover mockup (placeholder cover illustration, not final)

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.

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.
  • 4 standard backgrounds: the hearty Warrior, nimble Scout, cunning Seer, or spirited Skald.
  • 2 new advanced backgrounds: the devastating Berserkr and fiery Pyre.
  • 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.


Download a free 18-page Quickstart now and sink your teeth into:

  • Adventurer creation and example
  • Backgrounds
  • Combat example
  • Monsters
  • Character sheet

Character Sheet

Download the Runecairn character sheet for free here, which includes a form-fillable PDF and printer-friendly version.

Character Generator

As well, generate an adventurer in seconds with the Character Generator!

Adventurer Creation

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.

Download the full changelog here.


Art Assets

The primary art & promotional assets for Runecairn Wardensaga Remastered can be found here.

Team Members

Writer/Designer: Colin Le Sueur (he/him) is a writer, artist, and dungeon master. Born in Canada, he currently makes his home in North Yorkshire in the United Kingdom. Colin publishes tabletop roleplaying games, adventures, and supplements under the name By Odin’s Beard RPG.

Cover Illustrator: CROM is an enigmatic artist and tattooer from London. His newest comic, Birdking Vol 2, is now available.

Viking Age Illustrations: Jonas Lau Markussen (he/they) is an artist and designer, specialising in Viking Age art.

Additional Illustrations: Kim Diaz Holm (he/they) is a Norwegian artist and anarchist.

What People Are Saying

Chris McDowall (@Bastionland), designer and creator of Into the Odd and Mythic Bastionland:

I absolutely love Runecairn! As soon as I read it I wanted to steal its ideas. It changed the way I think about the type of games that the Into the Odd system can run.

Rich August (@RpgAugust), designer and writer at Steamforged Games (Dark Souls: The Roleplaying Game):

Thank you for such an awesome game - I loved reading Runecairn and it’s on my list of games to get to the table. And the layout is lovely too.

Richard Kelly (@SprintingOwl), designer:

If you’re looking for a moderately crunchy duo TRPG, or if you’re a fan of Souls games, or if you want to see a stellar adaptation of video game mechanics to tabletop, I would strongly recommend giving Beneath the Broken Sword (and Runecairn) a shot.

The Weekly Scroll review of Runecairn Wardensaga:

Roll 4 Initiative:


  • Dark Souls (video game series, 2012-2016).
  • Cairn by Yochai Gal (TTRPG, 2020).
  • Into the Odd by Chris McDowall (TTRPG, 2015-2022).
  • American Gods by Neil Gaiman (novel, 2001).
  • Sagas of Icelanders (c. 1200-1400 CE).

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!

Follow Up

If you have additional questions, would like to schedule an interview, or have any other questions please feel free to reach out via email: [email protected].

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