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Free League kickstarts a new Dragonbane, Sweden’s OG TTRPG

TTRPG publisher Free League launches a Kickstarter campaign for Dragonbane, “the original Scandinavian tabletop RPG” from 40 years ago

Dragonbane Kickstarter launch art of a dwarf holding a crossbow

“A legend is reborn”, says tabletop RPG publisher Free League. The ‘legend’ it refers to here is Dragonbane, or Drakar och Demoner, “a new and reimagined edition of Sweden’s first and biggest tabletop roleplaying game”. An English- and Swedish-language reimagining of the game is available from Kickstarter. Dragonbane is open for pledges as of August 30, and the campaign reached its goal of around $9,000 / £8,000 in four minutes.

According to a Free League press release from Tuesday, “Dragonbane is a classic fantasy RPG full of magic, mystery, and adventure”. Its new publisher credits the game with kickstarting the ‘Swedish wave’ of TTRPGs in 1982. “This new edition is designed from the ground up to facilitate fast-paced fantasy adventures, with very little prep time and adventures that are a breeze to run”, Free League adds.

A digital copy of Dragonbane will cost backers around $23 / £20, and the physical boxed set costs around $37 / £32. Roughly $74 / £64 can bag you a deluxe bundle instead, which includes a GM screen and cloth map of the game’s setting, the Misty Vale, along with the game. Free League is also offering backers who pledge within 24 hours “an exclusive bonus art print by artist Johan Egerkrans”.

“The campaign includes a free Quickstart PDF available for download at no cost”, Free League says, “with a complete introductory adventure and five pre-generated characters”. The core set includes a rulebook, an introductory scenario, and a map of the game’s setting. Stretch goals like “custom dice, custom cards, additional pre-generated characters, and additional adventures” are also available as part of the Kickstarter campaign.

Dragonbane Kickstarter launch photo of the core Dragonbane RPG set

Free League has reportedly based the new edition’ rules on those of the original Dragonbane. “However”, it adds, “the game design is further developed and carefully updated by Free League”. “Each player character has six base attributes, each ranging from three to 18, and skills on a one to 20 scale.”

“The core mechanic is rolling a D20 equal to or lower than the skill level to succeed”, Free League adds. The new edition also has a rule seen in many of Free League’s Year Zero Engine games – players can choose to ‘push’ and re-roll a failed roll (as long as they’re willing to accept negative conditions as a price).

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