Posted on May 31, 2013 by Flames
In this series, Kenneth Hite looks at the creatures, species, and monsters of the Cthulhu Mythos from every non-Euclidean angle. Alternate versions and new explanations provide the same jolt of mythic bisociation that the gods and titans receive in the TRAIL OF CTHULHU corebook. Hite traces these foul things through their legendary history, and provides further clues for any Investigator to follow. Horrific scenario seeds burst and bloom, story spines protrude and deform, in a blasphemous garden any Keeper can harvest.
Hounds of Tindalos is the third installment of the Ken Writes About Stuff subscription, or it’s available as a stand-alone product.
Hideous Creatures: Hounds of Tindalos is available now at DriveThruRPG.com!
Posted on April 30, 2013 by Flames
Out of Space contains five adventures that will take Investigators from the mountains of northern Mexico to the skies above Germany, to the smog and disease of gaslight London and the raging tides of the Atlantic Ocean. It will even take you to a world that could only exist in your worst nightmares.
Created by GUMSHOE designer and gaming luminary, Robin D. Laws, Trail of Cthulhu veteran Adam Gauntlett, and Jason Morningstar, award-winning creator of Fiasco and the Shab-al-Hiri Roach.
Out of Space also features extensive handouts, pregenerated characters and exclusive new essays from the authors.
Trail of Cthulhu: Out of Space is available now in PDF format at DriveThruRPG.com!
Posted on September 7, 2012 by spikexan
The Book of the Smoke is an oddity. The intentional use would be as an in-game prop for any setting where an occult London would be researched; however, it is best suited for Trail of Cthulhu, particularly the Bookhounds of London (a great read, by the way).
My initial impression of the book was lackluster. The cover is not eye-catching and doesn’t look right for a book from the intended era. The artwork, maps, and photography inside do seem to belong with such a tome though. The layout (single column) strikes the look of a journal. While the end result is fitting, it still proves dull upon examination.
Posted on August 2, 2012 by Flames
This work is a primer for players of Lovecraftian roleplaying games set in the dismal streets of 1930s London.
The Guide is replete with contacts, rumours and clues which will guide you on your quest for forbidden knowledge. Written as the companion volume to Bookhounds of London for Trail of Cthulhu, it can be used as a Keeper’s resource as well as an in-game artefact for players in any Mythos game.
Posted on June 25, 2012 by spikexan
Here’s a fun idea: Take a tried and true Cthluhu story of brave investigators stopping a mad cultist achieve his evil designs. Players have to contend with Sanity checks, grave danger, and, most likely, the rise of something that must be promptly put back down. Then, set the whole thing on the Titanic.
That’s the real beauty of this adventure, a little fiction laced throughout some tragic fact. I’ve always been a fan of that, which makes the recent emergence of the, for lack of better word, genre a hit with me.
The artwork of the adventure (25 pages, no ads) is sparse and mostly photographs from the era. I usually like art spicing up my text, but it’s really not an issue here. There is more than enough material to keep the reader interested.
Posted on May 22, 2012 by Flames
Enemy planes are not the only things hunting in the sky…
Early winter, 1918. You are members of the Royal Flying Corps stationed near the Front and rumour has it, the next big push is about to begin. The squadron’s being worked to death, and its champion ace is on the verge of cracking up. Meanwhile the new Hun Circus is racking up kill after kill – but is it the enemy or something else that’s to blame?
A sortie into Hunland to tackle an observation balloon ends in a fierce scrap with Jasta 32. Great winged beasts, agents of Death itself, are glimpsed flying in and out of the clouds. On the ground, flying ace MacMurdo knows more than he’s letting on but he is on the edge. Reporting it to Command won’t do any good, but talking to Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, military journalist, might. Combat takes its toll, and the date of the Push draws near. It’s up to you to make the skies safe and not just from the German planes.
Trail of Cthulhu: Flying Coffins is available now at the Flames Rising RPGNow Shop!
Posted on May 3, 2012 by Flames
First Class on the Titanic is exciting in itself but when you are invited to a private viewing of one of the world’s great curiosities, you jump at the chance. The mummy of Hettunaway, Priestess of Amun-Ra, the Unlucky Mummy is being shipped to New York and donated to the Metropolitan Museum of Art by its owner, Jefferson Shaw. Legend has it that those who look upon her face are doomed. Jefferson Shaw’s intentions are not as philanthropic as they seem. Strange rituals, a device to contact spirits and the awakening of something he cannot control.
The Titanic is on a collision course with an iceberg but will it be the icy water that kills you or the ancient force, finally unleashed?
The Millionaire’s Special is a short adventure for Trail of Cthulhu by Adam Gauntlett (Not So Quiet, Hell Fire). This is to celebrate the centenary year of the Titanic’s tragic sinking.
All proceeds from the sale of this adventure will go to the Heroes in the Dark charity.
RMS Titanic: The Millionaire’s Special is available at the Flames Rising RPGNow Shop!
Posted on September 3, 2011 by Flames
The Repairer of Reputations is a Trail of Cthulhu scenario by Robin D Laws, based on the story of the same name by Robert W. Chambers. It is one of four short horror stories incorporating Chambers’ mythology of The King In Yellow, a decadent play whose publication brings madness and supernatural presences into the world. His mythology was later subsumed into the Cthulhu canon when H. P. Lovecraft, and his circle and later followers, made reference to it in their tales of the mythos.
Trail of Cthulhu: The Repairer of Reputations is available now at the Flames Rising RPGNow Shop.
Posted on May 18, 2011 by Monica Valentinelli
To enhance your gaming experience for an upcoming Trail of Cthulhu campaign called Eternal Lies, Pelgrane Press has published a collection of songs you can play in the background on a never-ending loop. For this hour-long selection, several composers collaborated with Will Hindmarch and Jeff Tidball to create the atmospheric tracks.
The purpose of the Eternal Lies Suite is to enhance your mood as you play through this campaign. Since Eternal Lies isn’t out yet, we can glean some insight as to the scope of this story — it’s a global adventure that may include two characters named Edgar Job and Henslowe.
Posted on May 6, 2011 by Flames
Pelgrane Week continues with a new design essay by The Big Hoodoo author by Bill White. Bill discusses writing an adventure in 1950s California and other details for Trail of Cthulhu.
I’ve written two adventures for Trail of Cthulhu, a game of Lovecraftian investigation written by Kenneth Hite using Robin Laws’ GUMSHOE system. Both are unusual in that they are set in the 1950s, rather than TOC’s usual 1930s setting (itself one of the features that distinguishes Trail of Cthulhu from its more venerable cousin, Chaosium’s Call of Cthulhu, which takes the 1920s as its canonical milieu). The first, called Castle Bravo, is set aboard an aircraft carrier in the South Pacific during nuclear bomb testing at Bikini Atoll. Its appeal is, I think, straightforward: an atomic bomb goes off and the PCs, as the naval and scientific personnel involved, must deal with monstrous emergences in its aftermath.
Posted on May 5, 2011 by Ray Frazee
The RPG Call of Cthulhu has always seemed, to me, to be a game that a lot of people have played, but few get right. It’s a great game with a rich background, but the few times I’ve played it felt as if gamers had issues trying to fit their character into the world of the early 20th Century, and the efforts often resulted in hilarious incidents, like one player I knew whose character used a 19 year-old female NPC for point-blank .45 target practice and subsequent bloody blow-through wall spraying.
The other thing that’s always felt difficult to bring into the world is the over-all veil of horror that was an intricate part of Lovecraft’s story. Let’s face it: horror is hard to bring to the table. It’s difficult to put into word in such a way that it doesn’t feel like an descriptive afterthought to a game scene.
Posted on May 4, 2011 by Flames
Pelgrane Week continues here at Flames Rising with a new design essay by Paula Dempsey. Paula tells us about writing the Occult London a supplement for the Trail of Cthulhu RPG.
The Origins of the Occult Guide
I can’t recall agreeing to write Augustus Darcy’s Guide to Occult London. The idea was mooted towards the end of 2009 by Simon Rogers of Pelgrane Press and the concept came from him. By then Ken Hite was already working on Bookhounds of London and Simon wanted a guide to occult London in the 1930s to accompany Bookhounds. The back story for the guide, we decided, was that an occultist-about-town, who knew all the personalities in London at that time, was compiling this guide for a mysterious someone amidst murmurings that something very bad was about to happen. Unfortunately, when the occultist, Augustus Darcy, got near the truth he died mysteriously and his writings remained hidden for eighty years until, I believe, a dusty tome was discovered in Simon Rogers’ attic.
Posted on May 4, 2011 by spikexan
Castle Bravo is a tightly focused adventure for Trail of Cthulhu that ties together halfbreed mutants, nuclear bomb testing, and more sanity-blasting goodness. According to the product page on RPGNow.com, this adventure didn’t just go through an in-house playtest. It also went through some actual tabletop playtesting at Dreamation 2010. I mention this only because I enjoy games heavily linked to playtesting (Chad Underkoffler’s Zorcerer of Zo comes to mind). While this game only shows the finished product, it stands as an excellent example of how a well-polished adventure can look.
Posted on May 3, 2011 by Billzilla
Set in one of the most remote places on Earth, the Black Drop is an adventure for Trail of Cthulhu. Investigators, for reasons of their own, are on hand to witness the dismantling of an unsuccessful colonizing effort in the bleak and largely inhospitable Kerguelen Islands in the southern Indian Ocean. There are rumors that the Kerguelens were once part of an ancient continent: a place of advanced learning and magic – Lemuria. Something ancient stirs beneath these islands – something unwholesome and hungry…
Posted on April 12, 2011 by Flames
The first part of the highly anticipated Cthulhu Apocalypse series.
The Investigators are rendered unconscious by a train crash. When they wake they discover the world has died. White flowers cover the ground and they see, beneath the delicate petals, the faces of the dead. No other human is in sight, everyone is gone.
The struggle to survive the apocalypse takes the Investigators through Britain, across the sea to America and beyond the veils of reality.
The Dead White World contains the first three scenarios for Cthulhu Apocalypse by Graham Walmsley, author of The Purist Adventures.
Flames Rising is pleased to present an exclusive preview of this new Trail of Cthulhu product from Pelgrane Press.
Posted on March 28, 2011 by Billzilla
It may come as no surprise that I’ve been thinking about horror lately. It occurred to me recently that there has, at no point in modern US history, been such a vast array of horror material – across all media – available for consumption. Not only do we have a regular horror television series currently airing (Walking Dead) plus many more series no longer in production available in DVD collections, but also a ton of fiction, both in novel and in comic/graphic novel formats. It’s a great time to be a horror fan!
I was glued to AMC’s series The Walking Dead ever since I stumbled across a preview trailer online last summer. My wife complained about the amount of space it took up on our already full DVR, so I conceded and deleted the recordings. The DVD of the first season is available now; I’m waiting for the time to be right to buy a copy. As the highest-rated series to date on AMC, and one of the top five shows from 2010 in terms of ratings on basic cable, the Walking Dead has broken new ground as a continuing horror series.
Posted on February 8, 2011 by Flames
The stories of rocketships and rayguns you read under cover of dark are coming to life before your eyes. Will you become a victim of Parsons’ ‘Big Hoodoo’?
The Big Hoodoo is Lovecraftian noir in 1950s California with a ripped-from-history plot centered on the explosive death of real-world rocket scientist, science fiction fan, and occultist Jack Parsons in a garage laboratory in 1952. The investigators are iconic figures active in the science fiction scene at the time of Parsons’ death, and their inquiries lead them from the mean streets of Pasadena to the edge of the Mojave Desert and the mountains of southern California as well as the beaches of Los Angeles.
Posted on September 7, 2010 by Flames
Flames Rising is pleased to present an interview with James Semple, a composer and musician who hails from the UK. Semple’s work includes compositions for Pelgrane Press, a storytelling games publisher whose award-winning titles include TRAIL OF CTHULHU and MUTANT CITY BLUES. In this round of questions, we ask Semple to confirm the rumor that he recently was named as composer for the upcoming HOUSE OF HELL movie and more!
Posted on August 18, 2010 by Flames
Cthulhu Week continues with a new Campaign Frame for the Trail of Cthulhu RPG from Pelgrane Press written by game designer and author Robin D. Laws.
This series concept uses the Trail Of Cthulhu Campaign Frame format. The idea can easily be ported to your Cthulhu RPG of choice.
Setting: Play begins within the confines of Butler Hospital, a Providence, Rhode Island mental institution. This real-world facility was founded in 1844 and is still operational today. H. P. Lovecraft’s father, Winfield Scott Lovecraft, died there in 1898 after succumbing to psychosis in a Chicago hotel room.
Posted on July 14, 2010 by Megan
This work opens with ‘Double Feature,’ a scholarly essay comparing and contrasting 1930s horror movies with Lovecraft’s work: similar themes but different treatments. Lovecraft describes everything in detail while movies suggest with light and shadow, much being left to the viewer’s imagination. Many elements are common to both, but the movies have more random, innocent victims while most of Lovecraft’s bring horror upon themselves; and in the movies the monsters usually are defeated by the final reel… even if they return in the sequel! Your games will likely draw on both horror movies and the written word, and those pesky Mythos horrors have a habit of popping up in the next adventure.