Two wider geek-media huzzahs for Pelgrane core games hit this week, and by some kind of odd coincidence, they both feature interviews with me.
Andrew Girdwood of Geek Native shares the news of how you can get Trail of Cthulhu for 55% off at DriveThruRPG if you haven’t bought it yet, and asks me all manner of questions including “What music goes well with Trail of Cthulhu?” You know I plugged James Semple’s amazing soundtracks, but click through to see what else I suggested.
Ed Grabianowski, meanwhile, gives Night’s Black Agents a very flattering review at io9.com (“Filled with innovative features that help create a unique gaming experience”) and asks me, among other things, about playtest highlights I didn’t mention in the “DVD Commentary” sections in the book. Find out where the giant stone vampire head was, here.
On RPG.net, Darren MacLennan gives Trail of Cthulhu a 5/5 playtest review. Despite encountering some of the usual roadblocks for players new to GUMSHOE, Darren concludes:
On the other hand, Trail of Cthulhu taught me how to write an investigative adventure, has a ton of useful resources for Call of Cthulhu – and if you’re not married to Call of Cthulhu already, like I am, it’s entirely possible that it’ll work better for you.
He also calls Trail “an ultralight glider,” which is a lovely metaphor of gameplay to shoot for, I think.
A great and thorough review of Trail of Cthulhu from A Game of Whit’s. You can read the full review here.
Trail of Cthulhu overall provides a very complete gaming system that has a well thought-out structure and encourages investigative play by closely following the spirit of the genre. It may be a bit revolutionary for some gamers and Call of Cthulhu loyalists, but it gives a whole new way to experience the Lovecraft’s Mythos.
Here is an in-depth review of Trail of Cthulhu by Michael Harnish. Mr Harnish understands why GUMSHOE is not “railroady”, too.
By now it should be evident that I really love Trail of Cthulhu. I think it manages to capture the feel and style of HPL’s stories, particularly when played in Purist mode, with rules built to complement the stories. GUMSHOE is a perfect fit for investigative type adventures, and well-suited for a plotted out set of scenes. It also is simple enough to be run in a more “off-the-cuff” improvisational style and doesn’t require a great deal of prep on the part of the Keeper, an important consideration for those of use with other daily commitments.
A well written and engaging review of Trail of Cthulhu by Emily Dresner.
…the section on the Cthulhu Elder Gods/Outer Gods is superb and packed with so many incredibly insane ideas for running plots it is hard to talk about it without waving hands around incoherently. One small sentence about Elder Gods as meme loads was so compelling it was a hot topic in my house for three days. If you’re into CoC at all, this is worth getting to juice up campaigns and take them to 11.
Matthew Pook has reviewed Trail of Cthulhu in Unspeakable Oath with very positive results. You can read the full review here.
If ever there was a game writer spawned to author a Lovecraftian RPG, it is surely Kenneth Hite. Trail of Cthulhu is a harsher, grainier approach to Lovecraftian investigative horror. Fully supported by elegant mechanics, it opens up a whole new decade and restores the unknown of Lovecraft’s Mythos.
An actual play review of Trail of Cthulhu on rpg.net – 8/10.
The Gumshoe system is an investigation-oriented one, and this orientation is well suited to many Mythos scenarios. We enjoyed playing our characters and didn’t have too much trouble picking up the system. I’d recommend it. It might not work for some scenario types or for some groups, but my guess is that it would be EXCELLENT for many specific adventures which have interesting clues and a varied enough trail. I’d like to play again.
Here we have a very thorough and in-depth review of Trail of Cthulhu and the GUMSHOE system from Paco G Jaen of G*M*S Magazine. Jaen talks very positively of Trail and how it fits in with Lovecraftian themes, as well as how the GUMSHOE system deals with the investigative aspects of the Mythos.
“The Gumshoe system is pretty much perfect for a Lovecraftian setting”
“In short this game will offer years of perfect insanity fun. With enough for everyone and a system flexible to have from a purely investigative adventure to a action fuelled Indiana Jones style game, if you like Lovecraft, you simply can’t go wrong with it”
You can find the full review here.
A review of the Dragonmeet special edition (paperback, not hardback).