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Old 03-10-2010, 12:11 AM   #11
Cernig
 
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Default Re: Help Building Secret Organization for Occult Horror Game

Sounds like a setting that cries out for Charles Stross' "The Laundry", from his book The Atrocity Archives. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Atrocity_Archives

Charlie, being a good egg, has even put his novella "The Concrete Jungle", part of the Archives setting, online under a Creative Commons license. Enjoy.
http://www.goldengryphon.com/Stross-Concrete.html
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Old 03-10-2010, 02:02 AM   #12
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Originally Posted by David Johnston2 View Post
You could use Interpol. The real Interpol was of course small beer, just an organization that passed information between national police forces. But you could turn them into a monster-hunting agency with a bit of truth fudging. Of course the real Interpol fell under Nazi control in 1938, but there's potential in that.
Since my primary adversary group is going to be the Nazis, I figured I would leave Interpol at least somewhat suspect as a result of their wartime control by the Germans.
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Old 03-10-2010, 02:09 AM   #13
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Default Re: Help Building Secret Organization for Occult Horror Game

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Originally Posted by Cernig View Post
Sounds like a setting that cries out for Charles Stross' "The Laundry", from his book The Atrocity Archives. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Atrocity_Archives

Charlie, being a good egg, has even put his novella "The Concrete Jungle", part of the Archives setting, online under a Creative Commons license. Enjoy.
http://www.goldengryphon.com/Stross-Concrete.html
Stross is good. I gave him a nice plug in my Weird War II Sources thread. I may well go ahead and crib elements of 'The Laundry.' They are described as the sole survivor of the SOE, which works well with other things I have in mind. Stross's tone isn't exactly what I'm shooting for, but I liked the book and 'The Laundry' might be a good template.

Another thing I will definitely use from The Atrocity Archive is some of the creative and well-articulated rationale Stross uses for having supernatural entities in his setting.
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Old 03-10-2010, 02:13 AM   #14
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Default Re: Help Building Secret Organization for Occult Horror Game

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If it's a secret organisation, it doesn't have to have any sort of official sanctioning. If it's the "fighting branch" of a mason rip-off, it could easily have contacts with chapter houses all over the Americas and the Commonwealth - with members in high enough places to just smile and tell whatever forces might interfere to back off quick as hell and that's an order.
This basic approach is growing on me. I'd envisioned something along the lines of a more realistic take on the BPRD from Hellboy, but what you and some of the other posters are suggesting actually seems much more plausible.
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Old 03-10-2010, 08:59 AM   #15
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Default Re: Help Building Secret Organization for Occult Horror Game

I run a similar campaign type and have found the d20 menace manual invaluable it's full of these sorts of organizations ready made.
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Old 03-10-2010, 02:19 PM   #16
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I think I am going to roll with the lodge as the organizing force. I figure it will work like this. At the top you have the Amonis Albioni Lodge from Weird War II and Cabal. It recruits from other Masonic groups around the Anglo-American world and is highly secretive. The lodge has dozens of members infiltrated throughout the U.S., British, and Commonwealth governments. You'd find senior members at the Deputy Director/Secretary level in the U.S. and its equivalent abroad. Folks at this, Paul Wolfowitz, sort of level would be powerful enough to manipulate a lot of resources and assignments, but still able to keep a bit of a low profile.

Operatives could be salted throughout intelligence and law enforcement. There could be a small handful of standing teams (the PCs), secreted as inter-agency task forces. I figure the lodge could also control a medium size security firm, a transportation company, a research foundation or two, and some think tanks. This would give a good balance of resources and also provide a place to put the occasional Dr. Jones sort of a character.

I'm pretty happy with the concept.
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Old 03-11-2010, 10:18 AM   #17
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I have a plan I'm going to be using shortly for something similar. The IRS!
It sounds warped, but hear me out.
The IRS deals with money in utterly incredible amounts--almost every dollar that the government spends is funneled through it. The opportunities are endless. Even a very short (day or two) delay in money transfer can be used to loan that cash out on various short term deals. Overpaid taxes that don't get reclaimed, etc. Other money can be siphoned of in more ways than anyone might think of--untraceably.
IRS auditors can haul in almost anyone, examine books for different companies in the course of a "random" audit.
Any concerns people might have about the IRS looking at them will be focused on the tax issues, not on some mystic conspiracy.
The IRS deals in some manner with everyone in the entire country-if they want a clandestine meeting, all they have to do is haul someone in for an audit. Their leverage is incredible if they want something to happen or not happen. And by analyzing money flow, they can find some conspiracies that way. They can also really impeed someone that needs it.

Then, in a secret facility or two, the real work of fighthing the supernatural takes place. They have the info to hunt down recruits, and the werewithal to take care of their people.
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Old 03-11-2010, 11:42 AM   #18
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Regarding the IRS as a cover organization, I just ran into a neat bit of info. If someone doesn't file a return and claim their tax refund with 3 years of the filing deadline, they loose the cash. That would be a good source of clandestine money for supernatural activities...
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Old 03-11-2010, 09:46 PM   #19
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Default Re: Help Building Secret Organization for Occult Horror Game

The IRS concept is definitely creative. It's not exactly what I'm looking for in my own game, but it would provide a killer cover.

I did a little research on Masonic lodges in my GURPS collection and online. It turns out Ken Hite actually gave us two lodges that kind of fit what I'm shooting for. One is Amonis Albioni a presumably fictional lodge. The other is the Quator Coronati Lodge, a real lodge located in London and focused on Masonic research.

In typical form, Mr. Hite has pointed the spotlight on an organization with all sorts of RPG potential. Early members were associated with biblical archaeology on the Temple Mount in Jerusalem, the Ripper Case, and the founding of the Boy Scouts just to start. The idea of a research lodge is another element that has some potential. I'm not sure I want to use a real organization, so maybe I'll crib the Amonis Albioni name and then give it the cool attributes from the real world lodge.
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Old 03-15-2010, 01:14 AM   #20
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Default Re: Help Building Secret Organization for Occult Horror Game

I'm rolling with the pseudo-Masonic order angle. I'm going to model the core group after the Quator Coronati Lodge in London. What I'm looking for is a suitably arcane name. I don't want to use the actual lodge name, so I need to figure one out.

Inspired by Machiavelli, I've toyed with something along the lines of the Order of Chiron, with the name being drawn from, Chiron, the mythical centaur who was the tutor of Achilles. Front organizations could then take their names from pupils of Chiron like Achilles, Ajax, Theseus, and so on.

I'm wondering if anyone might be able to give me a nice Greek or Latin inspired lodge name, incorporating Chiron, but with a Masonic ring to it. Order of Chiron doesn't do it for me, but maybe if it was in a classical language it would sound more appropriate.
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