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Old 11-11-2013, 03:49 AM   #1
soulnafein
 
Join Date: Jun 2013
Default Introduction to Cthulhu

I've never played CoC, I've red a few Lovecraft stories (e.g. I'm read the collection of stories called Necronomicon), but I'm intrigued by it and I would like to run an adventure/short campaign but I don't have the knowledge to create one from scratch. I'm looking for a good published adventure.

Someone suggested "Mask of Nyarlathotep". Is that good? anyone played it with GURPS?
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Old 11-11-2013, 04:32 AM   #2
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Default Re: Introduction to Cthulhu

Masks of Nyarlythotep is amazing - it was my introduction to CoC - but it may be a bit ambitious for your first time out.

Trail of Cthulhu (Pelgrane Press) has some quality adventures such as Arkham Detectives (1930s cops and associates).

Chaosium's Cthulhu Classics is good as well. In fact, one of the adventures is a moderate length mini-campaign.

Gurps Cthulhupunk (available on PDF at E23) can be quite useful for conversion tips as well as gurps write-ups for mythos creatures, though it is for 3e.
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Old 11-11-2013, 04:33 AM   #3
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Default Re: Introduction to Cthulhu

Quote:
Originally Posted by soulnafein View Post
Someone suggested "Mask of Nyarlathotep". Is that good? anyone played it with GURPS?
"Masks" is awesome, but it is a massive campaign and hard on the investigators (meaning you can expect to lose a lot of them to graveyards and madhouses along the way). I've played it in the 1920s using Call of Cthulhu and in the 1990s using GURPS, both worked well.

For a beginning Keeper and beginning players, I'd actually just start with a couple of the short scenarios included in the basic rules books. It's been a very long time since I've run any of them, but I remember most of them being quite OK for the purpose of getting used to the setting and the tone of the game.

Cheers

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Old 11-11-2013, 05:06 AM   #4
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Default Re: Introduction to Cthulhu

Definitely look at Cthulhupunk. The Mythos Fright Check system is a very good conversion of the SAN Loss mechanic, and should translate to 4E without too much effort.
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Old 11-11-2013, 05:15 AM   #5
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Default Re: Introduction to Cthulhu

I'll echo that Masks is awesome, but also huge, ambitious and a meat grinder. I wouldn't recommend it for a first CoC outing.

As to using GURPS, to be absolutely honest IMO GURPS is too much system for CoC. The attention to detail, the adaptability, the options all that makes GURPS great is frankly surplus to requirements. CoC doesn't really require much system at all to run, moreover if you rolling up lots of characters it may actually be a hindrance!

However I'd go GURPS lite and include GURPS mysteries but use the full fright/will check rules.

But my honest recommendation? Buy CoC and run the intro adventures in that (but use GURPS for everything else, or course)!
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Old 11-11-2013, 05:20 AM   #6
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Default Re: Introduction to Cthulhu

Quote:
Originally Posted by HANS View Post
I've played it in the 1920s using Call of Cthulhu and in the 1990s using GURPS, both worked well.
Unspeakable! Are you walking around stealing youth? (;,;)
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Old 11-11-2013, 05:27 AM   #7
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Default Re: Introduction to Cthulhu

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Unspeakable! Are you walking around stealing youth? (;,;)
Obviously, he is responsible for the Steal Youth enhancement on Leech.
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Old 11-11-2013, 06:38 AM   #8
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Default Re: Introduction to Cthulhu

GURPS Lite is a good way to get started, fast and easy but use full Fright Checks as recommended.
If you want to run a longer and fuller campaign or are just ready for heavier stuff then in addition to GURPS Cthulu Punk I recommend GURPS Horror.
It is a real good book for helping you set the tone, no matter what system you use.
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Old 11-11-2013, 07:05 AM   #9
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Default Re: Introduction to Cthulhu

Quote:
Originally Posted by vicky_molokh View Post
Unspeakable! Are you walking around stealing youth? (;,;)
Nope, he was reconstituted from his ashes using the Dexter-Ward formula in a secret basement under SJG.
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Old 11-12-2013, 06:52 AM   #10
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Default Re: Introduction to Cthulhu

As said above by others, Cthulhu adventures work as well with Chaosium rules as with GURPS ones. So just choose the system you prefer. Both are great, though quite different: Call of Cthulhu rules emphasizes easy of play and narrativism while GURPS emphasizes realism...

For a very first Cthulhu adventure, I fully do agree with Refplace: Use GURPS Lite only.
http://e23.sjgames.com/item.html?id=SJG31-0004
It will give you all what you need for a first game.

And, as others said, a short adventure sounds better than a full campaign for an introduction.

Chaosium proposes this one as an initiation to Call of Cthulhu rules.
http://www.chaosium.com/forms/coc_quick_start_color.pdf
It is free.

If you want to have a glance on the very new Call of Cthulhu 7th edition, here is the link.
http://catalog.chaosium.com/product_...6900&CDpath=29
It is the same adventure, with the new rules and, here again, it is totally free. All what you have to do is to register on Chaosium site – but if you like Cthulhu adventures, even to play with GURPS rules, you'll surely want to do it anyway.

This scenario is amazing because it is very classical (a haunted house) and still a Cthulhu story. So, it is really a good initiation to Lovecraft world. Furthermore, it is open: the player characters can investigate and, then, enter the house or enter the house and investigate, or even do both, alternatively... They really can do exactly what they want. Finally, the GM can play the bad guy, Walter Corbitt, exactly as he wants. So, he can add danger and tension if the life of the player characters is too easy or, to the contrary, minimize the use of Walter Corbitt's powers if the player characters already are in a too bad situation.

The main difference between Cthulhu rules and GURPS ones is the sanity system. But don't try to create a mix of the two. Trying to design a like-Cthulhu-rules-sanity system in GURPS rules would be a pure lost of time. Just use GURPS Lite or GURPS fright-checks exactly as they are written. It is sufficient to frighten the players, which is the main goal of these rules, after all.

If you want more hints for stat conversions, I write some (I extensively use Call of Cthulhu adventures which are very well designed).

You made a very good choice. You will have fun.

Last edited by Gollum; 11-12-2013 at 06:57 AM.
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