The Fishers of the Dead


Life In A Plane of Undeath: The People of Niflheim

On the shores of a distant plane, hidden from the eyes of the gods and the worries of men, the dead crawl out of the black surf like a fisherman's curse...

Fishers of the Dead continues the exploration of Niflheim, the d20 fantasy setting based on the legends and folklore of Iceland. The 79-page pdf is filled with plot hooks, story arcs, npc's and new creatures of the goddess Hel.

A new class variant, the stave - based on the principles of an ancient Norse martial art - is introduced, as well as ways to incorporate runic magic into your game. Fully bookmarked, with hand-out maps, Nordic naming conventions, runes and their meanings, and a section devoted to scenes and encounters makes Fishers of the Dead a highly-detailed continuation of the Niflheim saga!

Download the ten page demo here!

Excerpts: Halldor; The Storm of Swords

I remember the smell of rain, as it was, when I was home. That was a fine smell, rich and green, and the trees would look to it. The trees would glow, in anticipation of the rain. Me and my woman would dance in the summer rain, and revel in the beauty of our grove. Those days are gone like the color’s gone from the air here and the hue’s gone from every, damned, living thing. I can still smell it, just before the rain’s about to come. But here it’s putrid, black and foul. The rain’s just as clear, just as wet, as it was so long ago – but it stinks like the grave and it’s the grave that it hungers for. I hold it back. Been doing so for years, and years. What will they do when I’m gone?

Halldor isn’t a particularly cheerful man, but he has an important job. He controls the weather – the Storm of Swords – which erupts whenever a new body is planted in his burial grounds. For three days and three nights Halldor sits or stands in a circle of dwarf yew trees in the middle of the cemetery and keeps the rain from falling anywhere within a half mile radius of his grove. He’ll be the first to mention the irony of protecting bodies when once he protected trees – and it’s best not to broach the subject with him.

Halldor came to Niflheim as a young man, after his wife was killed by soldiers. On the material plane, with nothing to lose but his own life, he volunteered to go on an expedition in the caves overlooking the nearest town. He was looking for a way to be free of his pain without having to take a blade to his own throat. Not wise in the ways of the world, Halldor thought it would only be a matter of time before fate took him the way it had taken his wife. The expedition found itself in Niflheim, and not long after, the druid realized death was something to be avoided at any cost. Halldor managed to survive the many raids on his group by the monsters, beasts and brigands of the Barrens, and made his way to the Four Villages. There he was accepted by the villagers of Pettbyli and given room and board, in exchange for his work in the fields. One winter’s day, a Pettbyli woman delivered a stillborn baby. Halldor helped her husband fashion a tiny coffin and dig a small grave for the infant. The druid noticed the husband watching the skies with growing anxiety,and when he asked what the man was watching for, the husband whispered, ‘storm of swords.’ He would not explain further.

Three days later the rain came, rain like Halldor had not seen in his home on the material plane. Fat, cold drops of rain broke the ground and turned the hard soil into mud, breaking clots of sod off of roofs, sending cows and goats running for shelter. The poor woman who’d lost her child was inconsolable, wailing in the night that her baby should not be taken for the Greedy Queen. At last, the husband knocked on Halldor’s door.

“They say you are a wizard,” he said, shivering with cold by the light of Halldor’s hearth.

“They’d be mistaken," said Halldor. "I’m a master of the woods – a man of the green.”

“Can you stop this storm?” asked the man.

“Why would I?," answered Halldor. "Miserable as it is, it is part of the cycle of things.” The husband then quickly explained why this storm was different – that it was a ploy of Hel to rob the ground of fresh bodies for her house of undeath, and that their tiny daughter would be carried to the Sea of Death, then to the shores of Nastrond, then taken to Hel’s stronghold. Halldor rushed outside, pelting up the hill even as he began chanting the words to control the storm…

Ever since that night he has kept the dead of the Four Villages buried. It is a grim purpose, but it sustains him nonetheless.


It is hard to keep the dead buried. The land seeks to serve its mistress, and the skies obey Hel’s whim. When someone dies in Nifl heim clouds begin to gather above, and within three days’ time it begins to rain. The rain falls relentlessly, changing at times to hail, but then resumes to rain until the ground can no longer hold its dread cargo. The dead float to the muddy surface and are swept away in floods and swollen rivers until they are given to the Sea of Death, where they are resurrected as servants of Hel. No death goes unnoticed, and even the very young – or very old – are taken to be the goddess of undeath’s minions. The caretaker of the only cemetery in the Four Villages, the druid Halldor, does his best to keep the Storm of Swords at bay once he buries someone in his plot. He has never failed to keep his dead, so far, and people will often travel for many miles to beg him to keep their fallen. He usually complies, provided the travelers have no taint of evil.

Flashes of lightning sizzle across the blue-black clouds above, and the wind is driving across the plains like a swarm of sharp blades, cutting at you and bending the already gnarled trees and shrubs til their frozen, bare tips scrape the roiling, muddy ground.

A Storm of Swords has a definite area of effect. It extends for a radius of 10 miles around the resting place of the deceased. Within this area the storm rages, bringing icy cold rain and hail.

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  • Model: DGS378
  • Manufactured by: Dog Soul

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This product was added to our catalog on Friday 09 February, 2007.

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