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1970s Call of Cthulhu?

CoC 1-6e CoC 7e Delta Green

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#1 dawnrazor

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Posted 12 February 2017 - 12:10 PM

So. We have CoC scenarios and sourcebooks for many ages - antique, medieval, atomic age,  1800s, 1920s, 1930s, 1940s, WWI, WWII, Vietnam War, 1950s, 1990s and 2000s. There's even Cthulhu in space.

 

Dig me, I've been thinking of running a 1970s game. Think: Starsky & Hutch, Blaxploitation flicks, terrible fashion, disco clubs, cigarettes smoked everywhere, platform shoes, afro haircuts, hairy chests with fat gold medallions, Zodiac killers, mega sideburns, cheesy urban slang, oversized muscle cars with unmotivated air intakes above the hood etc etc.

 

So I turn to you, esteemed YSDC-ites. Any tips or hints on where to find good 70s stuff? Or already written CoC materials?

 

Can you dig it?

 

 

 

 

 

 


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#2 BenjaminWenham

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Posted 12 February 2017 - 01:31 PM

So, for me, there are two aspects of that time period I would be drawn to, and they couldn't be more different. 

The first is the British spy fiction which places itself squarely in the 70's and eighties. Deighton and le CarrĂ© mostly. I'd use World War Cthulhu: Cold War as resources, but probably not a setting. I'd make it about an occult cold war happening between cabals on either side of the iron curtain. Blend in a little Unknown Armies, the Invisible, and Dirk Gently's holistic detective agency. 


The other side of the coin, Late 70's early eighties New York is a setting I would love to do something with. My primary inspiration would be Netflix's The Get Down, Paris is Burning and American Psycho. 

It would be all about class war. Extreme wealth as a dehumanizing, alien force that is grinding down on the people of New York. Sorcerers bankers destroying neighbourhoods because they stand in the way of a more perfect city, corrupt government agents fueling the crack epidemic because of their racist fear of black people.

 would make the whole thing fantastically camp but also gritty, with elements of Ball Culture and disco informing one half of the aesthetic, and four elements of Hip-hop filling out the rest.

 

Of course, I am probably not the right person to write or run the latter, and you know, i doubt I could get an audience for it among-st my players.



#3 JeffErwin

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Posted 12 February 2017 - 04:00 PM

If anything, the stuff in NYC in the Delta Green books feels like late 70s/early 80s to more than 90s. There's even a disco.

 

Taxi Driver would also make a good reference.

 

For a totally different game, there's a version of 70s NY detailed for Werewolf the Forsaken that matches your description...



#4 Judgetrev

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Posted 12 February 2017 - 04:45 PM

Spirit of 77 is what you describe. It uses the Apocalypse World system. The mechanics support the setting. I am not sure how that game system would be for investigation style games, but for kicking the tar out of some new age Cthulhu cultists.... It should be good fun!

#5 dawnrazor

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Posted 12 February 2017 - 05:10 PM

Thanks guys.

 

I'm not familiar with Apocalypse World or World of Darkness (other than the first edition of Vampire that is), but I'll have a look at them for flavor.

 

I do have all the old Delta Green supplements and they're great, but I must say that I don't feel the 70s vibe in them very much. More of a late 80s to early 90s vibe in my opinion.


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#6 BenjaminWenham

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Posted 12 February 2017 - 05:31 PM

The Hastur Mythos material from Delta Green: Count Down, could totally work for 70's New York.



#7 JeffErwin

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Posted 12 February 2017 - 05:53 PM

There's also a rather nasty adventure involving Y'glolonac in Worlds of Cthulhu 2.

 

I'm thinking in terms of the disco setup with the Fate in NYC. It feels like it could be easily transposed into a grim version of Studio 54. A fair number of NPCs would be there in the 70s.



#8 dawnrazor

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Posted 12 February 2017 - 05:54 PM

Long time since I read it but I remember that I liked it a lot. Must do some re-reading then


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#9 MrHandy

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Posted 12 February 2017 - 07:26 PM

For British late seventies/early eighties espionage, you can't beat The Sandbaggers. It's very gritty and realistic, and created by someone familiar with the inner workings of intelligence and covert operations. There's also Life on Mars and Ashes to Ashes, British cop shows set in the seventies and early eighties with a time travel twist. The Sweeney is another British seventies cop show, this one more realistic.

 

It's not published CoC material, but I've run a homebrew scenario as a play-by-post inspired by Life on Mars/Ashes to Ashes called Space Oddity. There's a link to it in my signature. It never was completed due to the players all abandoning the game, but there's a lot of material there. It's mainly set in Philadelphia in July 1969, which is almost the 1970s. There's also a portion of it that takes place in July 1976 (part of the thread Red Money in Chapter 1)..


Edited by MrHandy, 12 February 2017 - 07:29 PM.

Zombie Apocalypse: A Blood Brothers style play-by-post forum-based RPG using CoC rules
Space Oddity: Life on Mars/Ashes to Ashes/Call of Cthulhu in 1969 Philadelphia
The Terror Out of Time: Classic Doctor Who meets Call of Cthulhu in 1930 London

#10 WinstonP

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Posted 12 February 2017 - 07:41 PM

There's also a rather nasty adventure involving Y'glolonac in Worlds of Cthulhu 2.

I'm thinking in terms of the disco setup with the Fate in NYC. It feels like it could be easily transposed into a grim version of Studio 54. A fair number of NPCs would be there in the 70s.


"Love's Lonely Children" from The Stars are Right! might work in the late 70s as well.
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#11 BenjaminWenham

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Posted 12 February 2017 - 07:52 PM

The Sweeney

 

Do not mistake this for the 2012 film of the same name.



#12 MonkeyPrime

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Posted 12 February 2017 - 09:17 PM

World War Cthulhu: Cold War has an American supplement coming out called Our American Cousins. I think it might be a bit serious for what your looking for though.
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#13 carpocratian

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Posted 15 February 2017 - 11:40 PM

Do you want this to be semi-humorous, very serious, or something in-between?  The reality of the 70s was very different than the TV shows and movies of the era (says the old guy who lived through all that).



#14 dawnrazor

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Posted 16 February 2017 - 11:48 AM

Do you want this to be semi-humorous, very serious, or something in-between?  The reality of the 70s was very different than the TV shows and movies of the era (says the old guy who lived through all that).

 

As did I :)

 

I want this to be horrific and scary, but still a bit humorous. And I think that the contrast with today's popular view of the 70's will be very cool... 


And thanks for the input everyone! 


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#15 yronimoswhateley

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Posted 16 February 2017 - 10:14 PM

Do you want this to be semi-humorous, very serious, or something in-between?  The reality of the 70s was very different than the TV shows and movies of the era (says the old guy who lived through all that).

 

That was my thought, exactly - the TV shows and movies in the original post kind of suggest a larger-than-life and more or less "Pulp" version of the decade. 

 

Which is actually kind of cool:  a pulp 70s campaign sounds like a heck of a lot of fun!

 

I think that the suggestions above for Delta Green actually seem kind of appropriate for the 1970s:  for the most part, I thought the decade felt a lot like a slightly more optimistic and somewhat more naive and vaguely more "innocent" version of the 1980s, and the sort of thing that might make a nice contrast to the ugly secrets being hidden by Delta Green.


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