Friday, June 9, 2023

Chaosium's Call of Cthulhu Actual Play Series

 A few months ago, Chaosium published their own "actual play" series for Call of Cthulhu.  It's only four episodes, but they went all out for them - especially for a a small game publisher.  They use period costumes, props, a great looking studio, talented actors, and guests who drift in to play the roles of NPCs.  The game master (keeper) does a great job.  I was impressed by the production.

The episodes introduce the viewer to Call of Cthulhu game play, with sidebars that introduce the rules.  The keeper also explains how things work.  I can see why a game company would leverage well-produced actual play episodes to show how their game is fun and easy to pick up.

I seem to remember that several publishers experienced an OGL-bounce when WOTC imploded during their self-inflicted OGL debacle.  Pathfinder was selling like hotcakes, and Chaosium sold through their stock of Call of Cthulhu boxed sets (the starter sets).  The video series probably seemed like an even better splurge once WOTC had their meltdown and new people were looking to try the game.

The scenario presented in the video, "Bookshops of Arkham", appears to be written especially for the production.  It has some neat bits - there's a sequence in an insane asylum that's fairly creepy (I think it was episode 2).  Without further ado here they are:

Bookshops of Arkham, Episode 1:

Episode 2:

Episode 3:

Episode 4:

1 comment:

  1. Just finished the first episode, really makes me wish I had the time and energy to create that kind of atmosphere for my players. Though I doubt they'd want to dress up in period costumes and voice act their characters. Really an excellent way to demo a game to the general public. Thanks for the links.