Getting a head start on things; we have now opened submissions for our yearly OctoberNomicon! Submit your monsters, npc’s and abomonations to appear all through out the month of October. We are open to any game system. If you’re an artist and want to volunteer to draw things; let us know! We’ll give you a sneak peak of the submissions so far so you can bring these horrible things to life. As always send your horrible things to firstname.lastname@example.org
rhetorical blood and literal ink has already been spilled over the question of
graven or implushed images of Cthulhu and the Great Old Ones; but, while the
argument may have fallen away unresolved as a relic of the halcyon days of sane
public discourse, the failure to address the true scourge afflicting our dreams
of hegemony haunts us still, and shall grow ever worse unless and until we
cleanse it with purifying (albeit figurative, for now) fire.
Bone Demons are tiny, vaguely anthropomorphic jumbles of bones
from small animals or infants. Sorcerers create them as servants in a ritual
that requires self mutilation and bloodletting. They are covered in decaying
meat, held together with sinew, twine, wire, glistening with dried blood. Bone
move in a jerking dance, bones rattling against each other as the creature
moves. The monsters must be bathed in
blood frequently to remain alive. Bone Demons work as assassins, guards,
messengers, and assist in spellcasting. Some are even capable of casting spells
on their own.
Corpse Spiders are the intrusion of a foul alien mind upon our
world, the nightmare of a vast and horrid imagination made manifest. No one
knows what is ultimately responsible for the creation of the corpse spiders,
what it wants or needs, only that is uses humans as the vessel to enact its
will. Why it chooses one human or another is a mystery as well, appearing to be
random. Even if a reason could be found it is sure to be incomprehensible to
Coming in at a good duration of 93 minutes, The Babadook is intelligent, dark and frightening. Claustrophobia and gut-wrenching stress are intruded upon by a well meaning(?) outside world of school staff, social workers and haughty housewives. There is enough ambiguity to keep the viewer guessing as to what is actually going on, and the hero of the story is most unlikely–though always close by.
“Fear’s Sharp Little Needles” is a book of short scenarios, by Stygian Fox, and written for the Seventh Edition Call of Cthulhu role playing game published by Chaosium.
The cover art has elements I like, but is so dark it gives the impression you’re missing detail. That said, it’s very well executed.
The pages have a very cool parchment look. It’s bold enough to be noticeable, yet subdued enough to not interfere with reading. The table of contents gives the scenario titles on simulated scraps of paper, which is a nice touch. The text is Times New Roman, with the section headings bolded, and in some sort of sans serif font, making for an easy reading experience.
The interior art is beautiful. Also, not only does each scenario start with a full-page illustration which is a teaser for what’s in store, but there are also maps galore. The scenarios are intentionally brief. They are all set in the modern era.
Now, on to the scenarios, with an effort to minimize spoilers. Unfortunately, this leaves me only room for introductions. The cover page of each scenario contains three or four words which give an even briefer idea of what is contained therein–nice touch.
First things first, this is a beautiful product. Arc Dream Publishing does a great job with the covert ops decoration–bits and pieces of classified documents, blurry, black and white photographs, documents with blood drops, etc. Combine this with beautiful cover art of a sufficiently horrid monster and you’ve got a product which says “Buy me. Play me.”
“I swear, Doctor, they’re real. They came at us last night after our van slid off the road. They were all dressed differently, one was in an expensive suit, but they had no faces!
If they grabbed you, your face started disappearing too. One of them got Bill and he started changing! I shot it twice and it just vanished, like Alka Selzter in water. Later, Bill said he could still breathe when his face was going smooth, but he was forgetting his identity. After I shot the one, and Jeremy–he’s a boxer–knocked one down, they just ran away.”—Name withheld for HIPPA compliance, Harrison City Psychiatric Hospital.
The Faceless Human-Like Things are a creation of the Mi-Go. They appear like ordinary men, except they have smooth skin where their faces should be. They wear various, ordinary clothes.
This review is for two books, as I read them back to back, got swamped with packing up a house, and have finally found time to put together a proper review.
The Arkham Detective series follows a no-name pulp detective in the city of Arkham, Massachusetts. While most of the residents have heard rumors and stories regarding all of Lovecraft’s beasties doing their dirty work in the town, most of them don’t believe them, and neither does our protagonist until a gory encounter and a witness who claims some rather horrendous things.
Cthulhu’s Minions is a great primer to the world of the Arkham Detective in that it’s a great origin story for the guy who makes it his job to hunt down the weird stuff while also being a short read to get you psyched about the bigger stories in the series.
The action doesn’t stop with Minions, though, and my intrigue kept me going straight from the last page of Cthulhu’s Minions and directly into the sequel, The Innsmouth Look.
Depending on the day, my favorite story from the Lovecraft Mythos is Shadow Over Innsmouth. The dark tale of a city cursed by it’s fortune in more ways than one makes for a great setting for some pulpy adventure (as myself and other authors have noted). Unlike those other authors, and even myself, the adventure here is nonstop pulpy goodness that only Byron Craft could have put together. On the trail of a murderer and kidnapper from that doomed city, the Arkham Detective takes grit to a new level as he interrogates the town and puts his best detective shoe forward, stumbling upon Government spies, trapped locals, and, of course, a dark ritual that the town wants to happen while the rest of the world obviously doesn’t.
Craft knows his Mythos and weaves that into a series of books that reads like a great Lovecraftian story, but with more adventure and less fainting. I give both of these books 5 out of 5 stars for just being great and fun reads.