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Call of Cthulhu (role-playing game)
The Call of Cthulhu is a role-playing game based on the story of the same name written by H. P. Lovecraft and the so-called Cthulhu Mythos the story inspired. The game, often abbreviated as CoC, is published by Chaosium.
The setting of Call of Cthulhu is a stranger version of our world. Typically the time and place is New England of the 1920s, the setting of many of Lovecraft's stories. Playing in other eras (up to the present) is possible, and the protagonists may travel of course—sometimes to places that are not on this earth. The players take the roles of ordinary people, drawn into the realm of the mysterious: detectives, thieves, scholars, artists, war veterans, etc. Often happenings begin innocently enough, until more and more of the workings behind the scenes are revealed. As the characters learn more of the true horrors of the world and the irrelevance of humanity, their sanity inevitably withers away (the game actually includes a mechanism for determining how damaged a character's sanity is at any given point).
It is quite common for a player character to die in gruesome circumstances or end up in a mental institution, and players must often start with a new character. While arguably being more realistic, it also makes it hard for players to bond with their characters.
For the limited time they stay healthy, characters may be developed. Call of Cthulhu does not use levels, but is completely skill-based.
The original game was released in 1981, using a simplified version of the Basic Role-Playing system used in RuneQuest. The game is now in its sixth edition, but the rules have changed little over the years. Chaosium has licensed other publishers to create supplements, including Delta Green by Pagan Publishing . In 2002, Call of Cthulhu 20th Anniversary Edition won the Origins Award for Best Graphic Presentation of a Book Product 2001.
In 2001, a stand-alone version of Call of Cthulhu was released by Wizards of the Coast, for the d20 system; intended to preserve the feeling of the original game, the conversion of the game rules were supposed to make the game easier to play, a claim many doubt, and also made it possible to use Dungeons & Dragons characters in Call of Cthulhu, as well as to introduce the Cthulhu Mythos into Dungeons & Dragons games.
- Call of Cthulhu, the videogame
- Yog-Sothoth — Horror roleplaying in the worlds of H.P. Lovecraft
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