A rewrite of the 2018 SagaBorn Sanity book, Horror modernizes the wording and streamlines the mechanics for the SagaBorn 1.5 game system.

If you want to add an element of foreboding to your game, or even a single adventure, the Horror system adds an easy ruleset to do so.

Horror rules in SagaBorn attempt to simulate the inner workings of a character’s mind as they deal with the strange world of Atheles.

There are two reasons we think this is an important addition to the SagaBorn core game. The first is to illustrate the difficulties in the characters’ minds of the characters as they encounter the bizarre and often terrible things happening around them. The first time the undead rise up to fight might be a mind-numbing event, not just a combat encounter. Or, opening and reading a Grim Mortis warps the character’s perspective of the universe. Thus, Horror tracking becomes a game of balancing your mental state amidst the horrors of Atheles.

The second is to add consequences to overt violence. We don’t have alignments in SagaBorn, but acts of unwarranted violence are considered evil. When one commits these acts, they erode the barriers that separate them from being more than brutish animals. In a tabletop game where we are simplifying a complex world into a world built on numeric formulas, these rules will allow players to have their characters deal with the loss of compassion and understanding.

The main changes we have made to this new edition are:

  • A reworking of language to move away from antiquated ideas of “sanity” in tabletop games. We felt that the old verbiage relied on outdated stereotypes and tropes of mental health. This gives a framework for characters experiencing traumatic horror, while abstracting it enough so it does tread on archaic tropes.
  • A streamlining of the rules to work better with basic D20 systems and rules.

*While written for the Sagaborn Roleplaying Game, these rules can be used for most other d20 roleplaying games.