Ragnarok: Age of Wolves Bonus Material - Seatrolls and Seafaring!

Clint Staples

Last week I presented a Ships and Seafaring System for Ragnarok: Age of Wolves, and I promised creatures of the sea for this week (though there are already adversaries aplenty). Given the prevalence of the sea in just about every aspect of life in the Mythic North, it is no surprise that the waters of the Nordic imagination hold many inhabitants, some delicious, others dire, and some downright deadly.

 

Of course there are tales of sea elves – aloof and fey, as baleful to cross as they are beautiful to behold. Since R:AW Core has not treated the Alfar (Light and Dark), I will likewise save the Sae-alfar for a later post about all things elven in the Wolf Age. Besides there are plenty of other creatures that will provide entertainment on the battlefield – or in this case, the Warring Sea.

Trolls are a part of much of the folklore of the Nordic countries. In the past, they appear to have been more than lumbering hulks who turn to stone at the touch of the sun’s rays. They also appear to have been more varied. Just like the giants of the Ice, or the Flames, or those of stone or hill or mountain, there are trolls of earth, forest, mere – and most germane to our present subject – the Sea.

 

Saetroll (Sea Troll)

Sea trolls rarely venture on land, or inland from the shore or shallows. Most often they are only glimpsed by fishermen or vessels plying the farther reaches of the ocean. At sea, they are at home in longships of bone and sea-dragon hide, and have little need to interact with men.

Yet of late they have been at war with the Naglfari – the corpse-warriors of Hel on their nail-ships, who prowl the seas of the north, ranging ever further from Hel and Niflheim. And as the numberless dead of Hel fare ever southward, they are driving the sea trolls before them – into waters and shores more commonly frequented by men.

Though sea trolls undoubtedly share ancestry with mere trolls, they have no love for them. Because both are at home in the water, they share certain physical attributes that make them adept swimmers. In fact, it would be easy to mistake one for the other based solely on their appearance. But where the mere troll is a rapacious man-eater, a skulker of fens, a shadow-goer who lurks about the settlements of men, awaiting any morsel to slow to escape its clutches, sea trolls pride themselves on their self-reliance and honor, the distance they keep from men, the age old rivalry they maintain with the Saealfar, and the war they prosecute against Jormungand, the World Serpent – and its spawn, the Kraken.  

Sea trolls particularly value honor and the keeping of one’s word. They have been known to come to the aid of stranded whalers or warriors, though only a fool would count on such a rescue. They are as likely to slaughter a ship’s crew as interlopers on waves the Sea Trolls consider their own, or abandon them to the tender mercies of their thralls and beasts – which include large sharks, whales and giant squid – but never kraken.

Sea trolls are also sometimes referred to as Nykkur, and there is no surer way to cause grave insult than to name them so. The Nykkur are seatrolls who have surrendered their freedom to the service of Jormundgand and his brood of seawyrms. Nykr have abandoned all semblance of honor, seeking only to consume all life in the Nine Worlds. And Saetrolls invariably seek out Nykr whenever possible, slaying without mercy.

Sea troll sorcerers are masters of wind and wave. Many are also shapeshifters, said to be able to adopt the forms of whales, seals or sharks, sometimes even of sea-dragons, as well as forms indistinguishable from those of men. And because they think in ways not unlike men, there are a surprising number of Saetrollborn, especially in island or coastal settlements.

 

Here is the ship Statblock for a Saetroll Orm. It goes with the Ship and Seafaring rules:

 

Saetroll “Orm” – Hronnrekr “Surge-Cleaver”

Crafted from the bones and hide of sea orms – great wyrms born of the corruption of Jormungand, an “Orm” bears the head of the former wyrm as its prow, its bones as keel and strakes, its hide and tendons as sails, cordage and more. Some ormar, also contain the souls of their wyrms, bound there by potent saetroll sorcery. They are larger than even a snekkja, and built of sterner stuff that wood and iron can manage. But because of the size of their crew, an ormar cannot carry as many warriors or oarstrolls. The Sea trolls make up for the lack with centuries of experience of wind, wave and warfare.

            Hronnrekr is the orm of Saeskadhi Spawnslayer (below). Though only average in size for an orm, Hronnrekr contains the bound soul of the saeorm whose body and bones make up the ship. Hronnrekr the sea-dragon was a terror of the icy northern seas for an age before Saeskadhi’s father, Skurdr Drekar, killed the ancient beast and set its spine as a new keel.

 

Health: 9

Damage: 3

Defense: 17

Speed: 12, Reaching 13, Running 15

Seafaring TN: 8

Bonus Dice: 1; 2 or 3, if the Orm’s soul is bound to the vessel. Surge-Cleaver contains the soul of a powerful old orm, and has 3 Bonus Dice.  

Crew: 1 per oar (12), one or more of whom will be Sorcerers, +1 Steersman. Two Saetrollborn can take the place of a single saetroll crewman.

 

And here are Statblocks for Saetrolls and Saetrollborn, for Ragnarok: Age of Wolves, including a couple of heroes:

Orm Crew Saetroll

Follower (Allegiances: Sea Trolls, Sea Giants, Men)

Rank: Elite (2)

Race and Type: Troll Medium Infantry: Size Large

Move 6”/Charge 1d6+4”

Defense: 14

Health: 3

Attacks : Two-Weapon Fighting

• Sea Axe: Class 3, +4 to Hit, OK 14

• Warbow: +2 up to 14”, +0 up to 28”, OK 16.

 

Special

• Swim: A Saetroll can spend an entire turn to move any distance along a river, stream, or shore, or within a marsh or any other body of water, and it ignores terrain modifiers to Defense and Movement. At sea, a Seatroll can Swim 6, Sea Charge 1d6+4”. A Saetroll automatically Evades if fighting non-swimmers, simply by diving below the surface.

• When in water, Saetrolls gain +1 Defense against attacks that do not originate in or from the water.

• Regeneration: Saetrolls can attempt to regenerate a wound (by rolling 5+ on 1d6) in the End Phase of any turn in which they are below full Health.

 

Saeskadhi Spawnslayer – Saetroll Sorcerer Hero

Saeskadhi is one of a handful of survivors of the Saetrolls’ recent invasion of Spawns’ Deep. Following her jarl (Rangridr Whalehide, now thought lost), she participated in the slaughter of the numberless spawn of the Kraken Ascyll’utha. Separated in the fighting, she survived, leading a number of heroes from the Deep, only to find that Rangridr did not return. Saeskadhi hates Kraken and their spawn with a passion, and hunts saeorms, spawn and their ilk whenever wind and wave permit.

Named Character (Allegiances: Sea Trolls, Sea Giants, Men)

Rank: Hero (3)

Race and Type: Troll Medium Infantry: Size Large

Move 6”/Charge 1d6+4”

Defense: 14

Health: 3

Attacks: Sorcery +3

• Eye-Gouger: Class 5, +4 to Hit, OK 14: Eye-Gouger is the name Sawskadhi gave to her Narwhal Horn Spear, after she used to drive the kraken Ascyll’utha away from its spawn. No one knows whether the kraken died of its grievous wound, but Saeskadhi has carried the weapon since, and wove it round with potent magicks. Against Krakenspawn, Eye-Gouger has an OK of 12.

 

Special

• Swim: A Saetroll can spend an entire turn to move any distance along a river, stream, or shore, or within a marsh or any other body of water, and it ignores terrain modifiers to Defense and Movement. At sea, a Seatroll can Swim 6, Sea Charge 1d6+4”. A Saetroll automatically Evades if fighting non-swimmers, simply by diving below the surface.

• When in water, Saetrolls gain +1 Defense against attacks that do not originate in or from the water.

• Regeneration: Saetrolls can attempt to regenerate a wound (by rolling 5+ on 1d6) in the End Phase of any turn in which they are below full Health.

• Sorcery: Saeskadhi has the following spells: Evil Eye, Summon Air Elemental, Sharkskin (“Wolfcoat” in R:AW Core).

 

 

Skafloc Saeskadhison – Saetroll Hero

Skafloc is the halfblood offspring of Saeskadhi. His father is unknown, except perhaps to the sorceress herself, and so Skafloc claims lineage through his dame. Saeskadhi raised and tutored him in the ways of Sea Trolls, and the arts of Deep Magic. Perhaps his human heritage held him back, but Skafloc was only a mediocre pupil of sorcery. But in the ways of war, the young halftroll excelled. Quickly and well, he learned of axe and bow, and the iron-fray. In his twentieth year, he was at Saeskadhi’s side when she escaped Spawns’ Deep, and has captained her orm Hronnrekr, ever since. Skafloc bears a pair of matched swords, carved from fangs hewn from a massive Kraken’s beak lying in the muck of Spawns’ Deep. When wielded as a pair, they grant the second attack the ability to Outright Kill (OK), though to a lesser degree than normal.

Named Character (Allegiances: Sea Trolls, Sea Giants, Men)

Rank: Hero (3)

Race and Type: Saetrollborn Heavy Infantry: Size Large

Move 6”/Charge 1d6+4”

Defense: 16

Health: 3

Attacks: Two-Weapon Fighting, Sorcery Rank 1.

• Sword: Skornir: Class 3, +4 to hit, OK 14. “Carver” cuts deeply

• Sword: Skirin: Class 3, +4 to hit, OK 16. “Shining” gleams bright along is black edge as it cleaves deep.

• Warbow: +5 up to 14”, +1 up to 28”, OK 13.

 

Special

• Swim: A Saetrollborn can Swim 4, Sea Charge 1d6+2”. A Saetrollborn automatically Evades if fighting non-swimmers, simply by diving below the surface.

• When in water, Saetrollborn gain +1 Defense against attacks that do not originate in or from the water.

• Regeneration: Half Sea Trolls have inherited a portion of their full-blooded relatives regenerative ability, and can attempt to regenerate a wound (by rolling 6+ on 1d6) in the End Phase of any turn in which they are below full Health.

• Scafloc is an indifferent mage, but he did learn from one of the most potent of saetroll sorcerers. He counts as a Rank 1 Mage with the spell: Whirlpool (This is an awesome spell that William Thrasher came up with, you will need to go HERE to take a look at it!)

 

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Finally, Since I mention a magical spear made out of Narwhal Horn, it only seems fair to provide you with stats for a narwhal, admittedly a bit larger than they actually get, but reminiscent of their depictions in medieval art and legend. I know I went on about Krakens and their spawn a lot, but (like with the previously mentioned elves) you will need to wait for another post.

 

Narwhal

Narwhal are between 30 and 50 feet in length. Though not generally dangerous to men, they are hunted as all whales are, and sometimes fight. Older narwhal can prove to be cunning adversaries, using their though hides, long horn, and their maneuverability to best advantage. Rarely, two-horned narwhal are encountered, and these creatures are said to be more adversarial, and more deadly, than normal.

            Much of the diet of narwhal is made up of fish, but just as much is cuttlefish and squid. The latter preference has made them frequent prey, and bitter foes, of the Kraken and their spawn.

  

Size: Huge
Move: Swim 14 (option: Dive Deep)
Defense: 16
Health: 5
Attacks:
Horn, Class 5, +3 to hit, OK 14.
 

Two Horned narwhal

Horn, Class 5, +3 to Hit, OK 14.

2nd Horn, Class 5, +3 to Hit, if against the same target as the 1st Horn then OK 16.

 

Special:
Dive Deep: A narwhal that is swimming on the surface can be attacked (Defense 16). Narwhal that Dive Deep (Using the Move Phase to do so) cannot be Attacked except by other creatures at that depth, and cannot attack except those at that depth. On subsequent turns, a Narwhal can rise to the surface anywhere on the Sea of Strife.

Pierce: A Narwhal that attacks a ship after Diving Deep can use its Horn (or Horns). If an OK is rolled, the ship takes an extra Health in Damage. 

 

More next week! Maybe even Krakenspawn!