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The Cthulhu Hack

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#1 PaulBaldowski

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Posted 11 May 2016 - 01:25 PM

A long time fan of Lovecraft and the Mythos, I also happen to prefer simple systems when it comes to running games. I've tried several --- then recently stumbled upon The Black Hack, a fast play Old School retro-clone (to use the technical term).

 

The Cthulhu Hack is a role-playing game in the fine tradition of the classic Original 1970s Fantasy Roleplaying Game but based on the hugely popular modern OSR clone The Black Hack.

 

The Cthulhu Hack summons and binds the fast play potential of the original, and adds in new elements to handle character investigation and the sanity-shattering shock of dealing with Things Best Left Unknown. It uses The Black Hack's elegant Usage Die mechanic to emulate the dwindling investigative resources available to those intrepid sorts willing to put their lives and reputations on the line in pursuit of the Unmentionable and Unthinkable.

 

Includes Lovecraftian monsters and a Mythos 101 for those unfamiliar with the original tales.

 

This is a standalone product, including the Open Game License material of The Black Hack.

 

Available now from RPGNow.

 

the-cthulhu-hack-cover-thumb.png




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#2 PoC

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Posted 11 May 2016 - 01:54 PM

Paul, will you have copies of this for sale at UK Games Expo this year?



#3 PaulBaldowski

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Posted 11 May 2016 - 01:57 PM

Paul, will you have copies of this for sale at UK Games Expo this year?

 

I plan to order a 'test' copy this evening from a POD service - and if no major issues come back from purchasers / reviewers of the PDF, I will place an order for a small pile to sell from the All Rolled Up booth (on X-WIng Avenue).

 

Paul



#4 PoC

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Posted 11 May 2016 - 02:02 PM

Excellent. I plan on picking up a copy from you. :-) We actually talk about The Black Hack in this month's edition of The Cthulhu Breakfast Club - so it ties in very well.

 

We don't have a stand at UK Games Expo this year, but we will be there as "Press" - so if you'd be up for an interview about The Cthulhu Hack, let me know.

 

Also, congratulations on starting Yoggie's 30,000th topic!



#5 FreddieF

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Posted 11 May 2016 - 02:03 PM

Purchased this - thanks for the heads up Paul. I'll have a read and let you know any commentary if you like?


The Keepers of the Woods for Trail of Cthulhu is available now - download it here.

Those Within for Call of Cthulhu 7e - coming to a convention near you soon...

@freddiefoulds ; Visit my blog: Arcana Obscura


#6 PaulBaldowski

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Posted 11 May 2016 - 02:12 PM

Excellent. I plan on picking up a copy from you. :-) We actually talk about The Black Hack in this month's edition of The Cthulhu Breakfast Club - so it ties in very well.

 

We don't have a stand at UK Games Expo this year, but we will be there as "Press" - so if you'd be up for an interview about The Cthulhu Hack, let me know.

 

Also, congratulations on starting Yoggie's 30,000th topic!

 

That would be great Paul. I'm running games in all the morning slots, but will be around the All Rolled Up booth in the afternoons and somewhere in the vicinity of the site in the evening.

 

Purchased this - thanks for the heads up Paul. I'll have a read and let you know any commentary if you like?

 

That would be ideal. Anything glaringly wrong or frustratingly obscure, then drop a comment back.

 

Paul

 

P.S. Sorry I posted in the wrong spot originally.



#7 PaulBaldowski

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Posted 12 May 2016 - 01:43 PM

In running one of my playtest sessions for The Cthulhu Hack, I decided to use an old Call of Cthulhu classic – The Haunting – to see if I could handle a conversion.
 
You can get hold of the original for free as part of the Quick Start for 7th Edition or earlier editions. I remember playing The Haunted House (as it was called) back in the mid-80s, when we used 2nd edition Cthulhu, clustered around a desk in a classroom at lunchtime. My investigator managed to escape with his sanity but lost either an eye or an arm… I can’t remember which.
 
I wanted to make the conversion such that I could easily pick out the Flashlight and Smokes rolls that power the investigative side of The Cthulhu Hack. I also fancied making the notes a single sheet and giving the whole thing a bit of locational structure – so you start in the top left and work down to the bottom right. Location investigation across more than one cell of the sheet shares a colour and a bold title. The middle and bottom have the top, middle and basement of the house.

 

The-Haunting-for-Cthulhu-Hack.jpg
 
You can access the online version of the Cthulhu Hack-ed Haunting one-sheet adventure outline from Google Drive. I’m still fiddling with it, so thought a live document would be the best approach.
 
I’m not claiming this is the ideal way to write an adventure or the best way to do a Hacked investigation – but I wanted something that had a structure that would work for me. Running a playtest of The Cthulhu Hack I wanted to focus on the game mechanics and flow as much as anything, so I needed visually accessible information.
 
If you read through the original adventure and then check the sheet, I think that I cover the bases. I added one or two extra elements that I never needed to use (like the possibility that the final encounter might have an extra twist or that I’d need more combat). Just in case someone had played before, I wanted to have the option for a different cause and tried to pepper references to both amongst the clues.
 
Might just be an insight into the way my mind works – but I hope it also shows how I see Flashlights and Smokes work in The Cthulhu Hack. Perhaps induce you to give it a look as a viable alternative to weightier Cthulhu game systems...


#8 PoC

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Posted 12 May 2016 - 02:08 PM

Thanks for posting that. I look forward to trying it out at some point!



#9 Stoker

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Posted 14 May 2016 - 06:40 AM

Any chance for those far from this con to order a copy ?

 

I plan to order a 'test' copy this evening from a POD service - and if no major issues come back from purchasers / reviewers of the PDF, I will place an order for a small pile to sell from the All Rolled Up booth (on X-WIng Avenue).

 

Paul



#10 PaulBaldowski

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Posted 23 September 2016 - 09:25 PM

Since this, I've released From Unformed Realms - a massive collection of interconnected tables designed to create new horrors (released in June).

 

The Cthulhu Hack: Convicts & Cthulhu - outlining the basics for Lovecraftian horror gaming in the 19th-century penal colony setting of south-west Australia, including minor tweaks to the character generation system, new entities, and an adventure outline (released in August). Also, the Outpost Generator is a quick fire drop table approach to creating Outback settlements.

 

The Haunter of the Dark, latest release - takes HP Lovecraft's final Mythos tale of doomed writer Robert Blake and guides you, in clear steps, through the process of turning it into an adventure for The Cthulhu Hack. With that approach in mind, you can then use the same tools and guidance to create classic adventures in mystery and horror.

 

the-haunter-of-the-dark-hack-cover-v1.jp

 

All available through RPGNow: http://www.rpgnow.co...st-Crunch-Games



#11 NeferSutekh

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Posted 23 July 2017 - 03:37 PM

Per Just Crunch Games website:

 

"‪I have released the new version 1.5 of The Cthulhu Hack on RPGNow, available to everyone and accessible to all with the existing edition in their onsite Library.

 

Fast, flexible Lovecraftian tabletop horror upgraded. This is Lovecraftian roleplaying for the gaming group with no time for thick rule books and endless mechanics!

 

It’s entirely the same system as that released in 2016, but honed and refined over more than a year of open play, convention gaming, and more than 1,000 downloads. Centred around survival and investigation, the game keeps mechanics simple and character generation simpler.

 

New flexible character generation. New optional rules. Expanded format with an adventure and 2-page example of play to get you up and running. And backed by the usual range of supplements and adventures, all compatible whatever the edition – including horror generator From Unformed Realms and adventure design guide The Haunter of the Dark (nominated for a 2017 ENnie Award).

 

More than twice the content of the original in the same page count!

 

Take Lovecraft and the Mythos back to basics – and may Cthulhu have mercy on your battered soul!

The Cthulhu Hack v1.5 on RPGNow"

 

It is also available from DriveThruRPG, marked down 25% for their Christmas in July sale until July 31st.

http://www.drivethru...he-Cthulhu-Hack

 

Those that have previously bought the PDF version can also download the 1.5 update for free.


John A. Almack

#12 NeferSutekh

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Posted 27 October 2017 - 02:06 PM

As an early Trick-or-treat, here is my original entry for the RPG Geek One Sheet Contest 2015, now converted to The Cthulhu Hack rules. Happy Halloween!
 
https://plus.google....sts/LS2GCk935eM
 
The core rule book is available from DriveThruRPG, marked down 31% for their Halloween sale until October 31st.

 

http://www.drivethru...he-Cthulhu-Hack


John A. Almack





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