I've been lurking here for a while, reading tips and getting ideas. Last week I finally got to run a CoC game for my normal D&D group. I ran The Haunting with a good amount of homebrew changes. figured I'd give you guys a recap, got lots of the ideas from peoples suggestions on here.
I had all my players be a group of strangers who all responded to a newspaper ad mr Knott put out to hire people to check out the Corbett house.
Changed the chapel of contemplation to church of starry wisdom
made some changes to the tenants story (had the father murder the children and wind up in the insane asylum, mother went insane after seeing children murdered, now keeps raggedy ann and andy dolls and treats them as they are the children, very creepy scene, one of my players had to leave the room afterwards because she was so creeped out)
added in canopic jars hidden throughout the house that the investigators had to smash before stabbing Corbett with the rusty knife to fully dispel his spirit.
put dominate spell "traps" (make your spot hidden BOOM you are dominated, did note cards so the other players didn't know what was happening) throughout the house to get the party to slowly tear itself apart from the inside (which thanks to some awesome role play by a few of my players worked perfectly).
The bedroom/ bed attack worked like a charm, lured them into the room via victrola which kept turning itself on.
I had 1 investigator commit suicide after going insane, 3 others go insane and either suffer amnesia or faint and 1 who didn't do either (lucky bastard) but stabbed Corbett without smashing the jars and then help the other survivors escape. as an epilogue Knott spent the night in the house and was murdered by Corbett, the surviving investigators went on the run and were forever haunted by glowing red eyes appearing in dark spaces.
My players loved it, we did it as a Halloween one shot and now they want more, I brought in a bunch of old photos from 1920's era Boston, ran music, sounds, etc... now they want me to do a christmas one or two shot, along the lines of Krampus, Gremlins, Rare Exports (so christmas horror). anyone have any suggestions for christmas storylines? I'm thinking something 1980's in a mall with toys coming to life or something...