PF Midgard Campaign Setting - Impressions?
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  1. #1

    The Grand Druid (Lvl 20)

    Mercurius's Avatar

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    Jan 2008
    The center and periphery

    Midgard Campaign Setting - Impressions?

    I haven't paid much attention to RPG releases over the last year or so but have recently started to get back into things as I plan for a D&D 5E campaign to begin in January. Anyhow, while scouring RPGnet's Game Index for recent releases, I came across the Midgard Campaign Setting. As a setting junky, my eyes lit up. I check out the PDF preview and read the review on ENWorld and hope to eventually pick up a copy, although it seems like the hard-copy isn't easily available and when it is, it costs $50 (a lot for any book, especially a softcover). But I'm not a big fan of PDFs so would like the actual book rather than the $20 PDF.

    Anyhow, I'm looking for impressions. The review was relatively thorough, but I'm wanting to now more about the general feeling of the setting. Is it yet another "kitchen sink" fantasy setting? I'm not opposed to that, and enjoy new takes on old tropes, but I'd like to know what sets it apart - what makes it distinct, and how well it does vanilla fantasy.

    Commence opinionation.

  2. #2
    I was a patron for the project, so I'm of course biased. I also have the glorious hardcover version, which seems to be unavailable now. It is my default setting for any fantasy campaign I run. It leaves plenty of room for "vanilla" fantasy, but it has lots of little unique touches that make it stand out. The Zobeck area is the most developed, being the primary city for Open Design projects for many years now. It has clockwork guards, a kobold ghetto, and a pack of were-rat thieves. The Margreve forest nearby is full of creepy goodness and old world magic. Don't go too far in alone. There are also a lot of ties to eastern european mythology, like Baba Yaga, vodyanoy, and leshy. I also particularly like the Wasted West, a wasteland left from an old mage war. Old ones still stand there, frozen but not dead, testimony to the terrible magics unleashed.

    There is lots of supporting materials that has built up over the years, including numerous adventures. It really is well worth checking out. And be on the lookout for the next patronage project. A Magic supplement is in the works now.

  3. #3

    Novice (Lvl 1)

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    Nov 2013
    United States
    I like the Midgard setting so much, I created an EN World account, just so I could post a reply on here. I'm currently using this setting for my 13th Age campaign, and it's been a great fit for my group. It has a good balance between defining enough, so that I know, in a general way, what each portion of the world is "all about," but doesn't define so much that I can't insert my own details. It has a great take on the pantheon, which is unique to Midgard. Personally, I like some of the more unusual races that play a larger role in Midgard: kobolds, ravenfolk, gearforged, and minotaurs. The world is large enough that it features areas that are influenced by the culture and myths of Scandinavia, Eastern Europe, Arabia, the Italian Rennaissance, and even a bit of post-apocalyptic goodness. The world is sufficiently dark, where you know heroes are needed, but not so dark that it's overly Gothic or gritty.

    The source books for Midgard are also great additions to my game, and are worth mentioning. There are supplements for several major areas as well as some of the races I mentioned above. And the adventures that I've played through have all been a blast.

    I recommend that you check it out!
    Last edited by Tim Baker; Friday, 15th November, 2013 at 09:35 PM. Reason: Fixed my typos.

  4. #4

    Gallant (Lvl 3)

    Join Date
    Jul 2002
    West Des Moines
    As I said in the review that the OP linked, I think that people who backed the project have too much focus on the setting and don't realize that not everyone has that much detail available to them. When I picked up the softcover, I expected Zobeck to be fully detailed, as in take up three quarters of the book and answer the questions I had, such as who the secret police were for, what the council was doing and what the army was for. This CS book did not explain any of that.

    So, if you haven't made a decision, I'm not steering you away from this. But I think you will have to read the other 450 pages on Zobeck that the Open Design produced to have a fully fleshed out world. Again, I don't think this was terrible for a Campaign Setting book but it didn't stand out any better than any other high level look at a setting than any others out there.

    As for myself, I don't know why it is, but the FRCS or Inner Seas CS gave me more ideas and inspired me more than this one did. But that was me.


  5. #5

    Superhero (Lvl 15)

    Agamon's Avatar

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    Jan 2002
    AB, Canada
    I got the Bundle of Zobeck (Bundle of Holding for Midgard pdfs) in July, but I still haven't been able to do more than a cursory glance through the material. I want to read this stuff, but so much RPG material, so little time....

  6. #6

    Myrmidon (Lvl 10)

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    Sep 2011
    I liked it. Would rather it had fewer stats and more ideas, but no doubt that it was a worthy addition to my bookshelf.

    I have no prior background in the setting--e.g., with Zoeback, etc., if that makes a difference.

  7. #7

    The Grand Druid (Lvl 20)

    Mercurius's Avatar

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    Jan 2008
    The center and periphery
    I ended up picking up Midgard and really like it. Only skimmed through it for now, but it definitely is a well thought out setting with its own distinct qualities.

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