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Curse of Nineveh

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#81 MikeM


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Posted 01 August 2017 - 12:16 PM

That sounds okay.


But, let's be honest here and say that it is much a responsibility of the players to find motivation for their characters as it is the Keeper's. What on earth are folks playing CoC for if they're not prepared to have the characters investigate stuff? The whole point is you don't call the police, you avoid them like the plague because you don't want them poking into your ever increasingly dark obsessions and investigations. This is already set up with decent subtlety in CoN through the pcs membership of The Wentworth Club which is a club for those interested in esoterica.


Have a talk with the players first and make sure they understand the concepts of character motivation and have them build something into their backgrounds. The Keeper's got enough work managing the complexities of the campaign. If they suggest a connection to a major npc then get them to define the relationship themselves - as long as it's not a campaign breaker they'll be far more invested in actioning their own work than yours.


This is a shared load hobby and if players can't find a reason to continue an investigation then they might be in the wrong game.


"What's my motivation?"

" I don't know, I'm not a scriptwriter, I'm a player too."


Here, here!

Mike M, Line Editor for Call of Cthulhu, Chaosium Inc.

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Posted 01 August 2017 - 01:30 PM

I ran the entire campaign from start to finish last weekend for a group of 6 investigators.  We started Friday early evening and wrapped up Sunday late afternoon (about 26 hours of play in total).  Big congratulations to Cubicle 7 - I think that Nineveh is a brilliant campaign and the investigators really enjoyed it.  Speaking as an experienced Keeper, I was particularly impressed with the rich cast of NPCs and fantastic depth of plot.  That so much of it was drawn directly from the annals of history meant that I could weave in all kinds of real-world references and handouts.  I even played them part of the episode of 'In Our Time' on the great Library of Nineveh (disguised as a lecture/panel discussion at the British Museum!)  As I think I said in one of my previous posts, whilst the journals are in some ways problematic, I decided that they were ultimately too rich a source not to include.  They had both journals by about midnight on Friday so had a decent amount of time of digest them before we kicked off again at about 10.00am on Saturday morning.  This way they didn't end up interrupting the flow of play.  I removed some of the pages from RTC's journal (pp.27-36, 43-44 and 49) so as to build the tension and not give too much away too early in the campaign.  They discovered them later in the campaign at the end of Chapter 4 by which time the revelations didn't spoil the suspense.  I toyed with doing the same with Neve's journal but in the end decided to give it to them unexpurgated.  Best of luck with your respective campaigns!



A copy of Handout 18 in Babylonian cuneiform for the investigators to translate:



Cuneiform alphabet:


#83 Dabbler


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Posted 01 August 2017 - 02:02 PM

I am very impressed by the use of a cuneiform script -- exactly the sort of depth that would draw me (I have never played a game of C.O.C., see my profile) in to the game. 

Edited by Dabbler, 01 August 2017 - 02:02 PM.

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#84 horrabin



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Posted 03 August 2017 - 07:51 PM

I ran the entire campaign from start to finish last weekend for a group of 6 investigators.  We started Friday early evening and wrapped up Sunday late afternoon (about 26 hours of play in total). 


Wow, that's impressive! My gaming group also only gets together a couple of times a year - usually one in spring and one in the autumn - and plays through an entire weekend from friday to sunday afternoon with breaks only to sleep and eating (averaging about 26-30 playing hours per weekend). We recently finished Eternal Lies (where I was a player) after 9 sessions and a total of over 190 hours playing time (after almost three years). Now it's my turn to be the Keeper, and my keeping skills haven't been updated in a while, but I still think we will need more than 26 hours to finish CoN even if it isn't quite as big of campaign as Eternal Lies. Did your group skip something, or were they just really efficient?


My biggest concern with CoN is that it's "basic CoC", particularly after our group has played through Eternal Lies. I feel the EL campaign is more realistic with excellent motives and drives for the different antagonists with a pretty advanced plot that CoN - though good on it's own - can't quite live up to. As someone said, it's more of a old-school CoC, with each scenario based on "find an artifact and prevent it from falling in the hand of the bad guys", and a final goal of the Big Bad that isnt' really that special (a ritual to summon a God/Avtar and rule the world). The campaign has has a lot of good sections, with a nice overall feeling about being watched and followed all the time, and I quite like the number of NPC's that our investigators can encounter to make the world feel realistic, so I feel it has a good overall vibe that I'd like to use, but I'm a bit hesitant to the ultimate goal for the Big Bad. I like the idea of the Big Bad going for the most powerful person of the planet (at the time) to get the most power before performing the Ritual of Ascension, but it still feels like "summon-god-to-rule-the-world-and-become-its-right-hand-person-to-get-power". I know I can adjust it to make it more what I want, but since it has a lot of good stuff in it, it don't want to mess it up by adding my own stuff that suddenly doesn't make sense. It's a hard choice between using a pretty good basis provided by the campaign and adding my own adjustments (which might screw it up totally). I think the main thing I want is to bind the different chapters together with more handouts to make the PC's feel it's more cohesive.


And speaking of handouts, does anyone have handouts they want to share, besides those in the book? I'm talking about your own home-made handouts, including letters, book excerpts, newspaper clippings etc.? The ones in the book are pretty good, but I still would like more handouts (i.e. from diaries, newspaper clippings etc. that are mentioned in the text but without a proper handout). I will probably use ScottJBaker's Handout #18 (which is great!), but I'm wondering if anyone has done something for CoN akin to the Eternal Lies handouts-thread or omphalos handouts for Tatters of the King?

#85 UncleRiotous



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Posted 07 November 2017 - 12:12 AM

So CoN is my first campaign and I'm really starting to struggle (or I've been struggling for a while and just starting to admit it to myself).  As Horrarbin says the campaign is a section of find the artefact and do something with it to stop it falling into the hands of Delgado.  The problem I've got is how to fill the space between the chapters as the players want to investigate but I don't know what to give them to investigate.

We're in chapter 4, the auction was on 11th February and by 18th February my players have been detained in connection with the death of Raymond Price, have managed to loose a character to the Avatar of Alu, raid Delgardo's house (still not sure why they jumped to do that but they didn't actually find anything) and the police now have the horn at Scotland Yard (they may return it to the British Museum.  They're investigating Delgado and I should probably find a way to attract them back to the British Museum to encounter the CoT however I can't see the scenario taking them more than another few days (maybe a week) of game time.  Mountford isn't due to even steal the Eye of Lamashtu until mid March and the Pussydom chapter isn't due to start until May and during those two to three months my players are going to want to uncover what is going on with Delgado, the artefacts, etc.


I've had similar problems with this between earlier chapters and I'm trying to work out how to allow my very motivated players to be proactive (which they want) without just shifting everything forwards which will just leave me with a huge gap before the garden party and the opening of the temple.  The players seem to have a far greater sense of urgency than the chapters.  I'm really stuck here so any advice would be really appreciated.

#86 ragr


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Posted 07 November 2017 - 07:57 AM

The simple thing to do is to ignore the suggested timeline as it clearly isn't working for your game. The players probably have no idea about a guide timeline for the campaign and anything that gives the game away, like a handout, can just be ignored by not using it if it has a date on. The garden party can happen in Spring as easily as early Summer. Keep it loose. The danger is that the players start searching and not finding anything because you're holding things back which has a effect on their motivation; if they're fired up to progress, let them. The opposite is far, far worse.

#87 UncleRiotous



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Posted 07 November 2017 - 08:13 AM

I suppose the big problem is that they know the BM is going to open its exhibit in the summer but that doesn't mean that it can't be ready before the opening I suppose.  A few clues pointing to their being ahead of schedule might well work.  Thanks, I think that's probably what I need to do.

#88 ragr


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Posted 07 November 2017 - 08:33 AM

Yeah, it's always the problem with campaigns that have timelines. I've deliberately kept the opening time vague with my guys as Campbell-Thompson wants to ensure the opening is the most talked about thing in museum history, not just in Britain but the entire world, and wants everything to be perfect for the opening. With that in mind only a select few know the anticipated schedule. Those few do not include the npcs the investigators most have dealings with, like Audrey Leicester and Patrick Longton.


Whilst changing the opening date might seem unrealistic, people in positions of responsibility love to boast about bringing things to a conclusion ahead of schedule and C-T seems a huge egotist to me. The "opening" doesn't have to coincide with any advertised "public" opening either.

Edited by ragr, 07 November 2017 - 08:36 AM.

#89 UncleRiotous



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Posted 07 November 2017 - 12:44 PM

Cheers, that's really helpful.

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