Friday, August 20, 2010

Call of Cthulhu Fridays: Time Periods

Happy 120th birthday HPL! You sick bastiche.

It has been around 10 years since my last Call of Cthulhu game, and now that my group seems to be getting more open to lots of non-D&D alternatives to our regular game, I figure next year might be a good time to introduce it to some CoC . My long time player Terry is the only one of them with any experience with the game, and she loved it. She actually had a character survive at least two campaigns with her sanity mostly intact (by staying in the background and hiring a gangster bodyguard).

But should I do it in the 20’s again? I’ve had a couple of long running CoC campaigns, and they have both taken place between 1919 and 1922. One I set in the Los Angeles area, and the other shorter campaign in and around Arkham.

Victorian England is temping, and there are sourcebooks available for that setting. And I work a couple weekends of a Charles Dickens Christmas Faire up in San Francisco during the holidays, so plenty of inspiration there (the White Chapel district that they set up inside the Cow Palace is just dark and creepy). Switch that era to the Old West, and you have a setting I would love to do CoC for. Last week I got my hands on a copy of Deadlands, and that is inspiring an old west thing even more.

American Revolution seems like untouched and fertile ground for a few games. Or how about the Elizabethan Renaissance (my Ren Faire experience should really pay off for that)?

Hell, I think CoC with some Cro-Magnon Man tribesmen might even be worth a whirl.

Oh man. If only there was time for them all.


  1. Man, those all sound AWESOME. Cthulu is one of those games I've been aware of forever, but have never played or ran. I did get the 'Cthulu by Gaslight' sourcebook for victorian era adventuring. Good stuff, that.

  2. Only ever played in the 20's. Currently playing a CoC PBEM and absolutely loving it. But I agree with Cyclopeatron, neolithic gaming sounds stupendous!

  3. To the Cosmicist! (raises glass)

    Got Calamari?


  4. Fifties Atomic Horror?

    I had played on a great Viking-era CoC game at GenCon a few years back.

  5. I know I'm a big proponent of Open Design, but you should look at their Red Eye of Azathoth CoC anthology will be five adventures set over the course of 800 years. It begins in Lindesfairne, England in 1087, then goes to Japan 1287, then goes to Inquisition Spain in 1487, then to Roanoke Island in 1587 and finally the US Western frontier in 1887. The investigators are reincarnated each time, facing an enemy who has either survived or been reincarnated himself in a plot across time.

  6. I started with the 1920's, moved on to the modern era (1990's as it was then), but I've since become enamoured with the Victoria era of the game. I'd also like to do a something set before and during WWII.

  7. Ancient Rome. I got the idea for running a campaign when I read Sallust's Conspiracy of Catiline. Just think--a dark conspiracy to subvert the Republic and accusations of black magic and worship of dark gods. Extrapolate that into an entire campaign, only instead of the black magic and worship of dark gods being just mudslinging, make it so that they really were trying to summon Tsathoggua or something.

  8. Cthulhu Invictus does sound sweet, although I will be running a 1920's/Dreamlands game myself.