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Mutable Deceptions, Vol 1: Jazz Age Newspapers
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Mutable Deceptions, Vol 1: Jazz Age Newspapers


Period newspaper props and handouts are a much-treasured staple of Investigative and Mystery roleplaying games, in particular Jazz Age horror games like Call of Cthulhu and Trail of Cthulhu.

Making your own realistic-looking period newspaper clippings is not necessarily a quick and easy task. There are distinctive typographic styles, including font choice and layout conventions, which distinguish well-crafted period-authentic props from cheap imitations.

So, what’s a Gamemaster/Keeper/Dungeon Master to do when he or she wants to create an authentic-looking newspaper prop for a new scenario? Or maybe craft a quick newspaper report mid-adventure recording the consequences of actions taken by the players ... or which leads them off on a tangent of their own devising?

Mutable Deceptions, Volume 1 aims to make the process of creating realistic-looking newspaper props from the 1920s and 1930s quick and easy. It does this by providing fourteen different article templates, each a fillable PDF form in the style of a fully-editable 1920s/1930s newspaper clip. Bring your own text, or manipulate the bizarre real-world stories already pre-filled into the forms.

As a bonus, a sampling of 1920s photos are provided to embellish your handouts with just the right type of blurry, grainy illustration.

Baffle your players. Have them chasing shadows. It doesn’t get any easier than this ...

This product contains no game system material, simply resources to easily create beautiful custom props. As such it is equally useful for use in any gaming situation where realistic 1920s or 1930s prop newspaper articles are called for. This includes mystery, pulp or horror games set in this historical period, or games set in modern day which use old newspapers as clues.

IMPORTANT NOTE: This product is designed for use with Adobe Reader version 9 or later (on any platform). Because it includes complex PDF forms, highly formatted content and embedded fonts the correct display and operation of the editable templates in this product is not guaranteed when used with other (non-Adobe) PDF reader software, including the default PDF reader supplied with Apple operating systems. Adobe Reader is available for free on all common computing platforms.
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Reviews (3)
Discussions (2)
Customer avatar
Kerry J February 06, 2018 2:33 pm UTC
This product does not include a license for commercial use. What is the best method for contacting you to obtain such a license? (I sent a message using the contact form on the Cthulhu Reborn website.)
Customer avatar
Kerry J February 06, 2018 2:34 pm UTC
Could add a new product listing that includes the commercial licensing in price?
Customer avatar
Eddy F March 31, 2017 5:52 pm UTC
I just downloaded this thing for my latest Call of Cthulhu scenario. It seemed great but Its not very clear how you can change any text font once " dropped" into the text boxes. There seems no instruction on how the font style fits. So it looks rubbish, a bit disappointed really.
Customer avatar
Dean E March 31, 2017 11:12 pm UTC
Hi, So sorry to hear that you're not entirely happy with how the newspaper templates are working for you. From your description it sounds like perhaps you are trying to cut and paste text from another application into the Rich Text fields of the PDF forms, and finding that some of their formatting comes along with them. There are a number of ways to avoid this, either by copying "without formatting" or using the in-built "enhanced text properties" tool in Adobe Reader or Acrobat (which lets you change fonts and formatting; hit Ctrl+E on a PC or Mac+E on a Mac to open). There is some information about this in the instruction booklet that comes with Mutable Deceptions, but if you would like some additional support you can either check out the product support page over on Cthulhu Reborn or drop us an email at support [at] cthulhureborn [dot] com. The support page is at:
Customer avatar
Eddy F April 01, 2017 3:29 pm UTC
Yes you are totally correct. It took me a bit of time messing about but have managed to mock up a decent looking newspaper article. I am sure this will become easier as time progresses. Hitting Ctrl+E is the only way to bring up the toolbar. Once this was discovered it was plain sailing really. So yes I would happily recommend this.
Customer avatar
Dean E April 01, 2017 11:21 pm UTC
Ok, glad to hear that you were eventually able to get Mutable Deceptions to work to your satisfaction -- I agree that the interface for bringing up formatting options for form fields certainly *could* be more intuitive, but that's how Adobe designed it's reader software so that's what we have to work with. Once you know how it works, though, it is pretty easy.
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File Last Updated:
February 01, 2013
This title was added to our catalog on February 01, 2013.