Cthulhu Dark Ages
Product Code: 2398
Publishing Year: 2004
Cover Price: $23.95
Author: Stéphane Gesbert
Based on the page design of: Pegasus Spiele
Cover painting: François Launet
Photographs: Gero Pappe
Handouts: Kostja Kleye
Revised Edition (Released at GenCon 2015 in limited quantities. Yet to receive broad release.)
Product Code: 23143
Publishing Year: 2015
Cover Price: $??.??
Setting: Dark Ages
This book is the core rulebook and setting sourcebook for running Call of Cthulhu in the Dark Ages (primarily Dark Ages Europe). This material was first published in German by Pegasus Spiele under the title Cthulhu 1000AD, then revised for English-language publication by Chaosium in 2004. The entire text was re-written and overhauled to create a new version.
The labelling of books is complex and slightly misleading: although the 2004 book represents the publication of a ruleset which was in it's third edition, it is their first English publication. The previous two editions exist only in German. Because of this, the 2004 Chaosium book is called the "1st Edition" here. Marketing material for the 2015 revised version called it the "2nd Edition"; however to avoid further confusion, this entry refers to that book as the "Revised Edition"
The rules and setting in both books are faithful to classic Call of Cthulhu, but are substantially modified to take into account the society and technology of the 11th Century, drawing on mechanics published for other BRP games with a fantasy flavour.
The world of Cthulhu Dark Ages can be described as "filled with life, death, and the pain of old age. Vengeful hordes wash across the world. Petty warlords fight among themselves like ravenous dogs. Disease runs rampant. Illiterate city-folk and simple farmers dread that which lurks in the dark. And in the greatest abbeys, a few know of forbidden books that speak of blasphemy and of those who would destroy the world of god-fearing men and women."
The two books are vastly different in contents.
The 2004 book is organised into sections as follows:
- The Game System,
- The Cthulhu Mythos,
- The Old Grimoire
- Books of the Mythos
- Black Rites
- Black Tome (see "The Black Tome of Alsophocus")
- Cabala of Saboth
- Confessions of the Mad Monk Clithanus
- Cthäat Aquadingen
- Hieron Aegypton
- Liber Ivonis
- Praesidia Finium
- Rasul al-Albarin
- Reflections of Ibn Shacabao
- Sapientia Maglorum
- Song of Yste
- Testament of Carnamagos
- The Three Codices
- Tuscan Rituals
- Non-Mythos Occult Books:
- Dagon (and Hydra)
- Unicorn (use "white rhino" stats from rulebook)
- Dark One ("Dwarf")
- Deep One
- Dragon (see Dhole, Hunting Horror, Flying Polyp, Shantak, Lloigor, [[[Star-Spawn of Cthulhu]])
- Dimensional Shambler
- Giant (see Great Old One)
- Halfling (see any hybrid creature, such as Ghoul, Deep One, etc.)
- Leviathan (see Cthulhu)
- Loki (see Nyarlathotep)
- Goblin (see Gof’nn Hupadgh Shub-Niggurath, Dark Young of Shub-Niggurath)
- Hounds of Tindalos
- Nameless Mist
- Serpent People
- Star-Spawn of Cthulhu
- Worms of the Earth
- Spirits & Limbo Creatures:
- Ancient Ones
- Scenario: The Tomb (Scenario),
- Investigator Sheet,
The 2015 Revised Edition includes the following sections:
- Investigator Creation
- Equipment and Weapons
- Player Guide to the Dark Ages
- Game System
- Anglo-Saxon England
- Investigative Horror in the Dark Ages
- Cthulhu Mythos in the Dark Ages
- Dark Ages Grimoire
- Tothurh (village description)
- The Hunt (Scenario)
- The Doom That Came To Wessex (Scenario)
- Eseweald (Scenario)
Scenarios (2004 Book): The Tomb (Scenario)
1st Edition Front Cover Text
No Additional Text.
1st Edition Back Cover Text
The Dark Ages world is filled with life, death, and the pain of old age. Vengeful hordes wash across the world. Petty warlords fight among themselves like ravenous dogs. Disease runs rampant. Illiterate city-folk and simple farmers dread that which lurks in the dark. And in the greatest abbeys, a few know of forbidden books that speak of blasphemy and of those who would destroy the world of god-fearing men and women.
“The living close the eyes of the dead, but it is the dead that open the eyes of the living.” — Old Slavic saying
950 A.D.— The Byzantine Theodorus Philetas translates the al-Azif into Greek and renames it the Necronomicon. It will be more than a century before this blasphemous tome is finally condemned, and most copies destroyed.
During these hundred years, when manuscript copies of the Necronomicon covertly pass from hand to hand, mankind almost yields to the uncaring forces of the Cthulhu Mythos. The dark young of Shub-Niggurath infest the boundless forests, mi-go guard mountain passes, ghouls and miri-nigri haunt forgotten burial grounds, and deep ones plague coastal settlements.
In this world the last magi explore powers not meant for humans, and are lured to into the abode of Yog-Sothoth.
CTHULHU DARK AGES is a complete roleplaying game, using the intuitive and flexible Basic Roleplaying System used and developed by Chaosium for many years and is also used in our Call of Cthulhu game. If you know how to play one, you can play the other.
CTHULHU DARK AGES presents the era of the Dark Ages (c. 1000 A.D.) and the continuing threat posed by denizens of the Cthulhu Mythos as described by H. P. Lovecraft, the Lovecraft circle of writers, and the works of Chaosium Inc.
Revised Edition Front Cover Text
No Additional Text.
Revised Edition Back Cover Text
Cthulhu Dark Ages is a world lit only by fire. The ancient empires collapsed centuries ago, taking their culture and learning with them. It’s [a] dark world and people are right to be afraid of the dark. Apart from the Viking raiders, witches, and outlaws, there are the unquiet dead, ancient horrors, and other malevolent beings stalking the countryside. Dark entities, beyond good and evil, wait hidden in the recesses of time and the angles of space. A few brave souls try their best to resist these horrors and push them back from whence they came. Will you be one of them?
Cthulhu Dark Ages has been updated for Call of Cthulhu 7th Edition, completely revised and with a wealth of new setting material. Included are a player’s guide to the Dark Ages, an optional Sanity mechanic which mirrors the medieval mindset, rules for the oral tradition of story telling, rules for mounted combat, a grimoire of Dark Age spells and optional rules for folk magic, a bestiary of monsters, as well as a fully detailed setting - the Anglo-Saxon community of Totburh in England’s Severn Valley which includes interesting characters, dwelling descriptions, and a multitude of plot hooks for Keepers to use and develop. In addition, three scenarios introduce players to the Dark Age Severn Valley.
Comments / Trivia
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