This may get me shunned by all the hardcore horror lovers, but I do use good guy organizations. Sparingly.
Not deus ex-machina, but to help advance the plot and give my players a sense of purpose and some modest power. I find it unrealistic for investigators to always be isolated, weak, and gimped. Frustration falls over the game and leads to player apathy because it gives the sense that the storyteller is out to get them no matter what they do. They just let themselves be led around by the nose with plot hooks and wait in tense boredom for the next 'boo' moment.
In my experience there is only so much 'darkness' you can toss in before the game loses its charm. Good organizations provide a reprieve and allow the horror elements some contrast. People don't play investigators to be bullied by an omnipotent malevolent storyteller and then killed off or driven mad by ridiculous alien nonsense.
Here are some examples of what I've done in the past:
Spy in the region who provides info or who has already been doing some light investigation to get the group started.
Agent shows up in town to lurk and provide help with a scoped rifle and/or by committing arson on select buildings.
Criminal drives into town with a trunk full of small arms after the team makes a phone call reporting persecution by cultists.
Creepy dude in a manor who lets the team consult his library of esoteric books with a referral from a mutual 'friend'.
Crazy conspiracy theorist who makes pipe bombs in his cellar, supplies explosives, and lurks about taking photos.
Priest or psychiatrist who offers counsel and helps the team recover sanity with philosophical or theological teachings.
Benefactors who anonymously put out a bounty or hit on a villain, forcing that person to flee or go underground.
Invisible allies in a remote city who put in a few calls, plus threats, plus graft to get the team released from prison.
These things support the investigators without doing their jobs for them. They advance the plot, while also providing NPC's who can die horribly later, or be kidnapped, or turn out to be traitors, or go nuts, or mysteriously vanish, or whatever.
What I am opposed to:
A squad of dudes in black body armor and gasmasks armed with flamethrowers, grenades, and assault rifles. Hopped up on some crazy drug that helps them cope with sanity damaging things.
Hope this helps.
Edited by Mannimark, 14 December 2017 - 08:47 AM.