Friday, October 31, 2014

The Mythos Guide To New England By Clint Staples From Skirmisher Publishing For your Old School Campaigns

Cover for "The Mythos Society Guide to New England"

Grab It Right Over
This is a massive 142 page tomb of knowledge & New England lore for essentially the heart of Lovecraft country. Writing and designing this sort of supplement is tricky business because Lovecraft wove both the imaginary & factual into his material. The Clint Staples did a great job with this one but for the Call of Cthulhu DM this book is really a nicely done book. The design and layout is easy on the eyes and the author knows his material very well.
Love Bradley MC Durmett's cover art as well
Clint draws from both New England folklore and the well stocked Lovecraftian lore to create a unique blend of material that a DM can draw a ton of campaign and adventure ideas. 

I really don't think that the Call of Cthulhu crowd has given these books or product line a second glance. That's too bad because their missing out on a very well done piece of Cthulhu rpg reference that includes not only the Mythos but a large chunk of New England lore as well. This book is a really bold stroke by Skirmisher and Mr. Staples does a great job capturing the flavor and feel of New England in these pages.
We're given a nice overview of the history, horrors, and facts all in one hundred and forty pages with additional monsters and mayhem just in time for Halloween.
Here's The Drivethrurpg Blurb: 

The Mythos Guide to New England provides a record of the land and its inhabitants, its prehistory and history, and its natural and unnatural characteristics. In these pages you will find tales of the witchcraft, hauntings, monsters, and malevolence that have plagued the peoples of the region, from pre-Colonial days into the 20th century. 

New England is a diverse territory. Some the earliest settlements in the New World lie check by jowl with rugged country that, to this day, is all but untraveled by humanity. The sea, with its rocky shoals, rugged coves, unknown depths, and centuries of legend and lore holds sway over the minds of the region's inhabitants. The mountains and forests are just as mysterious and deadly, keeping secrets centuries and even millennia old, some of which mankind would be better not off not knowing. Between these wild areas are the settled portions, farms and orchards inland and harbors filled with ships and the folk that sail them on the coast. Man prevails in such places, but in the shadowed lanes, forgotten cellars, and lightless passages beneath his world there is still much that is unknown and unsettling.
The material here is very well balanced and the author is a veteran rpg designer & writer who knows the material. He's carefully researched his subject but put his own thumb print and ideas into this product as well. This is a product though with a bit of utility at the table top as we'll see.

Using The 
The Mythos Guide To New England
For Call of Cthulhu and Your Old School Horror Campaigns 

There is a lot of old school horror action going on under the hood in this product. New England is a vast subject and while not every aspect can be covered all of the Mythos highlights are hit here and some other traditional subjects are hit upon as well. This is a volume that will spark a DM's imagination and add the thread of the weird and depraved to their imaginations. This book provides a DM with plenty of opportunities to enmesh the PC's into the machinations of cults, high weirdness, and plenty of Lovecraftian hi jinks deep in the New England venue.
Cover for "The Mythos Society Guide to New England"

A good example of one of the nasties that are found in this tome but was  an over flow creature is the Misshipesha. A sinister water spirit and horror of turbulent waters, which has deep meaning for those of us who have been to the Great Lakes.
This is a monster rife with adventure possibilities deep with the fabric of the New England region.  You can find this horror right HERE

This is a monster which has plenty of utility across the horror rpg spectrum and any DM worth his salt could easily built an entire adventure around such a creature which really is about the essence of this book. The ability to build an adventure and campaign around the backdrop of New England and its lands.
New England held deep echoes for Lovecraft and his contemporaries. And this volume allows a DM to use this material as a handy horror candy sampler picking & choosing what he or she needs or wants for their old school campaigns.
But this does not have to be simply Call of Cthulhu, any contemporary horror rpg can benefit with this material and that's really one of the strengths of this book.
Many of the DM's I know who use Realms of Chaos and other Lovecraftian OSR material can easily create their own stats and draw from the plethora of horror material within these pages. There is a ton of monsters, cults, and nasties to bedevil your PC's with. The advantage here is that these monsters have been here for a long time. At least two hundred or more years and this is rout out within this book's pages.
 Could this material be used in a game like Chill or one of the other great horror games on the market currently including some of the OSR retroclones? Sure it could.
This is the first updated exclusively New England book that I've seen seen Chill had their own New England Guide book many years ago and its very well done! Pick this one up and get going on your investigations into one of Lovecraft's back yards! 

No comments:

Post a Comment

Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.