The Runestones of Rys


Viking carving runestone

The Runestones of Rys is a campaign designed for use with the “Pathfinder: Beginner Box” set as an introduction to the Pathfinder RPG. It is set in the same world as the “Heroes of Midhgardhur” campaign.

About 700 years ago, according to legend, barbarians from the East raided the Great Temple at Uppsalir and stole magical treasures, the sacred runestones that contained the secrets of the gods and the magic of the runes. The barbarian raiders took the runestones back East with them, and traveled along the Vylga river towards Palnorra. What happend to the runestones remained a mystery for centuries.

Then, about twenty years ago, a great champion named Rys came to power among the Sviar tribes of the North. He declared that he intended to seek the lost runestones and learn their powers. He took his followers East, establishing the Tribes of Rys and the Rys Khanate in the mysterious lands of the East. Then, he traveled south along the Vylga river, seeking the lost runestones. Although he was never heard from again, many believe that Rys had found the secret of the runestones, which are now commonly referred to as the “Runestones of Rys.”

Many adventurers have gone along the Vylga river, seeking to find traces of Rys and the runestones. Few, if any, have ever returned – the quest to find these runestones has led many great heroes and adventurers to their deaths in the cold wastelands of the East.

As the Runestones of Rys campaign begins, your heroes are presented with the key to finding the lost dungeons in which Rys hid the runestones. It will be your adventure to find the lost Runestones of Rys! Your characters are all in the lands of the Tribes of Rys. You have heard the legend of the Runestones of Rys, but never had a reason to think it was any more than a legend.

Then, one day, you were approached by a mysterious stranger. He was an old man in a dark blue cloak, leaning on a spear, and wearing a wide-brimmed hat pulled low to conceal his eyes. He offered you the key to the secret of the Runestones of Rys. At first you laughed, but he showed you a map that showed the path Rys followed along the Vylga river and the ancient monuments of the barbarians along the river. The map showed how to find the lost runestones!

When you looked up from the map to ask the mysterious old man some questions (like where he found the map and why he was showing it to you), he was gone. Vanished. You still have the map, so your characters decided to follow it and try to find the lost Runestones of Rys!

Campaign Parameters

Permitted Races

The Pathfinder Beginner Box Set only allows limited races: human, dwarf, and elf. This means that in the “Runestones of Rys” campaign, only the following are permitted:

  • Human – Typically of a Rys tribe, though the character may be from any of the standard Northern nations – Danir, Gautar, Northmenn, or Sviar
  • Dwarves = Dvergar
  • Elves = Alfar

Permitted Classes

The Pathfinder Beginner Box Set only allows for a few classes: Clerics, Fighters, Rogues, and Wizards (Universalist, Evoker, or Illusionist). Hence, in the “Runestones of Rys” campaign, the following choices are permitted:

  • Cleric – usually called a “godhi” or “gydhja,” a cleric must choose their patron deity from the standard Northern gods of Midhgardhur found here.
  • Fighter – the most common class archetype of the North, the champions of their peoples
  • Rogue – somewhat rarer in the North, where the prevailing attitude is that a hero should rely on his strength, not stealth, but there are some who know that discretion is the better part of valor
  • Wizard – usually called a “runecaster,” a wizard is a very rare sight in the North

The Runestones of Rys

Heroes of Midhgardhur Valerianus Valerianus