Masks of Harlem Unbound – Part 2

This post is brought to you by Steve Reynolds and Jose Manuel Caballero as an abridged excerpt from their ongoing herculean work The Unpleasant Complement to Masks: New York.  Warning: Contains Harlem Unbound Spoilers This is the second installment from the Unpleasant Complement to Masks: New York providing suggestions and options for incorporating Harlem Unbound’s scenarios into the New York Chapter. For an introduction and information about “The Contender” and “An Ode for the Lost” see Part 1.  YOUR NAME IN THE BOOK This historical scenario set in Dutch Haarlem brings the investigators into contact with the Black Man avatar of Nyarlathotep. This journey back to 1680 provides early direct contact with the campaign’s titular

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Masks of Harlem Unbound – Part 1

This post is brought to you by Steve Reynolds and Jose Manuel Caballero as an abridged excerpt from their ongoing herculean work The Unpleasant Complement to Masks: New York.  Warning: Contains Harlem Unbound Spoilers Harlem Unbound is Chris Spivey’s wonderful supplement for Call of Cthulhu, currently in its second edition. In addition to incredible historical detail and game tools, this outstanding sourcebook contains brilliant and often heart-wrenching scenarios. If you have the time and inclination to include them in your MoN campaign, you can expect these adventures to enrich everyone’s experience and bring 1920s Harlem into the well-deserved spotlight. This is the first of several excerpts from the Unpleasant Complement to Masks: New York, in

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Another Dead Man in New York

This is the first in a series of articles produced by the team of Steve Reynolds and Jose Manuel Caballero. They’ve paired painstaking research with their immense creativity to create an even more expansive and intriguing New York chapter. We will be sharing just a fraction of their efforts here at Prospero House for your consideration and use. In their first article, they will be helping Keepers integrate the classic Call of Cthulhu scenario, Dead Man Stomp. This is perfect timing as the latest version of this Harlem adventure is available in PDF for less than a dollar as part of the Call of Cthulhu Starter Set.  Warning: Spoilers for Dead Man Stomp below! Building

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Peering into the Abyss: The Cthulhu Mythos Skill

Of all the skills on an investigator’s character sheet, the most alluring, but least used is Cthulhu Mythos. This suits the Lovecraftian perspective that humans stumble around ignorantly in a massive and incomprehensibly dark universe. The limited access to eldritch insight serves both Keeper and players well when aiming to capture this particular tone; however, it potentially restricts players aiming to recreate investigators in the image of Dr. Henry Armitage or Keepers intending to run a double-barrel Pulp Cthulhu campaign. We intend to review the use of the Cthulhu Mythos skill in the Classic and Pulp settings and introduce a Pulp-oriented Cthulhu Mythos skill expansion. The discussion seeks to inspire both Keepers and players to

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Egyptian Mythos Artifacts

As befits the rich history of Egypt, the chapter contains a multitude of artifacts for investigators to seek out and recover. In addition to the Adornments of Nitocris, two additional items center around the resurrection plot, including the Sword of Akmallah and the Circlet of Nata Haje. The investigators also potentially receive a gift from a priestess of Bast in return for their aid during the sidetrack scenario, The Black Cat. While none of these items serve instrumental roles in the campaign, they offer added protection to vulnerable investigators in their perilous adventures. Sword of Akmallah Location: Ibn Tulun Mosque Description: a four-foot-long curved sword closely resembling an Afghani pulwar with an exquisitely crafted Damascus

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We are Providence – Necronomicon 2022 Recap

“There is Providence, quaint and lordly on its seven hills over the blue harbour, with terraces of green leading up to steeples and citadels of living antiquity…”  The Dream-Quest of Unknown Kadath by H.P. Lovecraft In 2021, the world continued to suffer from a pitiless contagion while the stars above spun out of alignment leading to the cancellation of the fifth Necronomicon in Providence, Rhode Island. While veteran attendees lamented breaking the odd-year cycle, they happily flocked to Lovecraft’s beloved hometown for the international festival of weird fiction, art, and academia once more this year as it ran from August 18th through 21st. For us at Prospero House, this was our first sojourn to the

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Adding “The Auction” to Your Campaign

SPOILERS FOR “THE AUCTION” BELOW! Released in 1983, The Asylum & Other Tales contained a collection of seven adventures and opened with “The Auction” by Randy McCall. We love this classic scenario, as do many other Call of Cthulhu fans. The combination of the 40th Anniversary Call of Cthulhu Kickstarter and exquisite corresponding HPLHS prop set makes running “The Auction” even more appealing, and we feel it fits beautifully into a Masks of Nyarlathotep campaign either as a prelude adventure or as a compelling campaign-linked sidetrack. In addition, we offer a few suggestions to enliven the investigative trail for any run of this scenario. Prelude Scenario: Peru serves as a perfect jumping-off point for the

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Eye of Light & Darkness – MoN MacGuffin?

Even if you won’t be keeping score for your Masks of Nyarlathotep campaign, the Eye of Light and Darkness (EL&D) plays a critical role in disrupting the cultists’ efforts to open the Great Gate. This powerful warding spell relies upon clues scattered unevenly across the globe, and the impact of the spell in your campaign depends heavily upon your players’ destination choices. If your group travels to China initially they will rapidly uncover the entire truth about the ward; however, if they travel the conventional London-Egypt-Kenya route they will slowly uncover this end-stage element of the campaign all while lugging around a useless stone MacGuffin. We offer some suggestions and tweaks to make the broken

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Unspeakably Good – Recapping ChaosiumCon 2022

I learned of the inaugural ChaosiumCon at GenCon in September 2021 and anxiously awaited the official date for months. This would be the first official Chaosium convention and held auspiciously during the company’s 40th anniversary year. The fact that this historic convention would be held in the Ann Arbor area further fired our enthusiasm since we live nearby in the Detroit metroplex. We looked forward to running and playing games just down the road from our house and meeting Chaosium fans from near and far. The week approaching April 8 ran exceptionally slow. Final preparations and home games helped distract us until the day before the convention.    Thursday, Day 0 But we couldn’t hold

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Masks of Nyarlathotep – A Rich History

Initially published in 1984 by Chaosium for the second edition of Call of Cthulhu, this masterpiece campaign was the work of Larry DiTillio and Lynn Willis. DiTillio was a television and movie screenwriter, contributing to pop-cultural products, such as He-Man (17 episodes), She-Ra (18 episodes), and The Real Ghostbusters cartoons, as well as a sci-fi television classic, Babylon 5, among many others. On hiatus from screenwriting, Larry was busy producing role-playing material for various game companies in 1984. His inspiration for Masks of Nyarlathotep (MoN) came from a biography of Jomo Kenyatta he wrote for the television show Against the Odds, and exploded out of a single scenario he created, “The Carlyle Expedition.” Rather than simply tracking Carlyle’s

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