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Horror on the Orient Express



A puzzling headline begins a front-page article found in the Times of London. Three men, all identical in identification, were found dead in the same room of the Chelsea Arms Hotel. All were dispatched in a similar manner stabbed through the heart.

Then the home of a valued friend burns to the ground, severely injuring him in the process. An odd summons, a surreptitious meeting, and a thousand-mile journey begins on the legendary rail service carrying the investigators to Constantinople, the Gateway of the Orient.

HORROR ON THE ORIENT EXPRESS contains a massive and legendary campaign, of up to nineteen adventures and more than 1100 pages, for the Call of Cthulhu roleplaying game. Beginning in 1920s London, the investigators journey to Paris and thence to the ancient city of Constantinople. With luck, they also return home.

Optional episodes are set in ancient times or special places (Roman-era, Dark Ages, Gaslight-era, the Dreamlands), so that the players can experience the founding, creation, and discovery of crucial elements of this campaign. Also included is a modern-day coda to the storyline, an alternate ending for those wishing a shorter campaign, and a built-in survival guide to aid beleaguered investigators.

There are seven books and more: the Campaign Book, Through the Alps, Italy & Beyond, Constantinople & Consequences, Strangers on the Train, and The Traveler's Companion. In addition, there is a book of handouts for the investigators, a European Route Map, three era-inspired luggage stickers, two era-inspired postcards, a matchbox, the Scroll of the Head, four U.S. passports, a bumper sticker, six pages of train plans that can be laid end-to-end, the Mims Sahis ceremonial knife, and fragments of the Sedefkar Simulacrum collected along the journey.

What the Critics Say

"Truly fantastic"—Diehard Gamefan

"The biggest and most grandiose campaign ever composed for any game… a must-own campaign. It is not just the grandeur, the scope, the high-quality writing or the fact that it epitomizes many of the values of Call of Cthulhu and the horror genre overall. It is the sheer immersion, the entertainment value it provides when played to the level it deserves…"—Antonios S. review, RPGNet.

"The most ambitious Call of Cthulhu adventure ever created… a high water mark for CoC."—Blackgate.

2015 ENnie Awards - Best Adventure (Gold)

2015 ENnie Awards - Best Production Values (Silver)

1992 Origins Awards - Best Roleplaying Adventure (1st ed)

1992 Origins Awards - Best Graphic Presentation of an RPG (1st ed)

With this purchase you receive these downloads (in these formats):

  • Campaign Book, 72 pages (pdf, epub, mobi, prc)
  • Through the Alps, 264 pages (pdf, epub, mobi, prc)
  • Italy & Beyond, 272 pages (pdf, epub, mobi, prc)
  • Constantinople & Consequences, 192 pages (pdf, epub, mobi, prc)
  • Strangers on the Train, 96 pages (pdf)
  • The Traveler’s Companion, 48 pages (pdf)
  • 1923 Calendar (pdf)
  • Handouts for the Investigators, 192 pages (pdf)
  • European Route Map, color (pdf)
  • Air Routes in 1923, color map (pdf)
  • Player Maps in color, 13 pages (pdf)
  • Keeper Maps in color, 18 pages (pdf)
  • Three era-inspired luggage stickers (pdf)
  • Two era-inspired postcards (pdf)
  • Matchbox (pdf)
  • Scroll of the Head (pdf)
  • U.S. passports (pdf)
  • Bumper Sticker (pdf)
  • Six pages of Train Plans (pdf)
  • Mims Sahis ceremonial knife (pdf)
  • Sedefkar Simulacrum (pdf)
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Reviews (1)
Discussions (11)
Customer avatar
Pieter-Jan D April 09, 2022 12:12 pm UTC
I bought this physical book. Was not cheap. The edition I'm reviewing is the 2 book set with white spine. Buyer beware that these books are the flimsiest sturdiness I've ever seen in any rpg books. And I own over a hundred. Despite being very thick, this is a very light book. The spine almost broke itself, I hesitate the call the spine cardboard. The front cover is such a nice image, shame that too tore down the side. I'm pissed off.

Customer avatar
Lukas E September 14, 2021 1:31 pm UTC
is it also available in German?
Customer avatar
Michael L March 05, 2022 10:40 am UTC
There has been a boxed set in 2005, for the 5th Edition I believe, but I couldn't find a pdf version of it sadly. Especially because the pages are quite stiff and the binding is too brittle, so I would prefer to read it electronically. )-;
Customer avatar
Yeseul K February 17, 2021 7:53 am UTC
Is this the second edition of the campaign scenarios? I heard there are two editions of this (1st and 2nd)
Customer avatar
Cynthia C June 22, 2020 4:11 pm UTC
I ... don't suppose there are plans for a POD, possibly divided into several books? The original printing is kind of 1000% gone and fetching ludicrous prices.
Customer avatar
A.A.P. S August 23, 2019 7:55 am UTC
It is a pity that some files are downloaded with only a number in the name, for instance the book 2,3 and 4 pdf files are just random number pdf files. For me it would be nice if the names of the files contain book 2 etc.
Customer avatar
Jacob W August 26, 2018 2:21 pm UTC
I've been very interested in playing this expansion. I am a little frustrated that I cannot get the physical box for it though, as the only available ones are being sold on amazon for upwards of $1,500! I'm old fashion and prefer physical books to pdfs, but I'm gonna have to make an exception in this case
Customer avatar
Michael E June 20, 2018 7:40 am UTC
This is an amazing update to one of the best campaigns ever made for Call of Cthulhu. I just wish there was a slightly cheaper version that doesn't come with all the new adventures. I was hoping the new adventures would be more like optional side quests that can be done along with the main adventures, but they're not. They take place in totally different time periods, require the players to make completely new characters, and have very little to do with the main campaign. Honestly, they seem like nothing more than advertising for the other Cthulhu period books.They'd make good one-off adventures (the adventures are actually pretty good), but I don't think I'd ever run them in an actual Horror on the Orient Express campaign.
Customer avatar
Christian L December 08, 2015 8:40 pm UTC
The only thing I really miss is a pdf poster of the box cover. That would have been a really cool addon. But otherwise, great pdf box! Well worth the money!
Customer avatar
Michael G April 23, 2015 4:08 am UTC
I won't disagree that ~$60 is a sizable upfront cost. However, $40 in 1991 (the cost of the original printing) is worth ~$68 after almost 25 years of inflation. Also remember that this is after they added 6 additional scenarios from the original edition, updated it with multiple errata, and updated the rules for multiple editions. (Source: Most PDF bundles on this site are not almost 3/4 of a gigabyte in size. In a different medium, it's like picking up Skyrim at launch versus getting the Legendary Edition a year or so later. So yes, it's not a casual purchase for a single session of gaming; it's a multi-month campaign for a dedicated group to experience.
Customer avatar
Stefan R April 17, 2015 10:54 pm UTC
I own a box set from 1991 by this name. Is this the same adventure?
Customer avatar
Fletcher B September 03, 2019 9:30 pm UTC
Sell it to me.
Customer avatar
William M April 10, 2015 1:53 pm UTC
RRP: $119.95 reduced to $59.97
I'm a big CoC fan. But $60USD/£40GBP for PDF seems very steep. Even if the seven books were sold in a bundle together, the price still seems high, even at half-price. A $100+ for a collectable hard copy book (or bound collection) seems almost reasonable, but a starting RRP for a PDF of these seems out of sync with other publishers in the electronic market. Are you really saying that in print it would be sold at $119.95 - because this doesn't seem like a proper way of marking prices for electronic products.

Also (as a long time fan), which edition is this for?

No preview?

Again, I'm posting as a fan, occasional customer, nostalgia rules reader, but sometimes my casual basket filling is stopped dead by figures like this - and not in a good way.
Customer avatar
Rick M April 10, 2015 3:53 pm UTC
With this purchase you receive these downloads (in these formats):

Campaign Book, 72 pages (pdf, epub, mobi, prc)
Through the Alps, 264 pages (pdf, epub, mobi, prc)
Italy & Beyond, 272 pages (pdf, epub, mobi, prc)
Constantinople & Consequences, 192 pages (pdf, epub, mobi, prc)
Strangers on the Train, 96 pages (pdf)
The Traveler’s Companion, 48 pages (pdf)
1923 Calendar (pdf)
Handouts for the Investigators, 192 pages (pdf)
European Route Map (pdf)
Air Routes in 1923 (pdf)
Three era-inspired luggage stickers (pdf)
Two era-inspired postcards (pdf)
Matchbox (pdf)
Scroll of the Head (pdf)
U.S. passports (pdf)
Bumper Sticker (pdf)
Six pages of Train Plans (pdf)
Mims Sahis ceremonial knife (pdf)
Sedefkar Simulacrum (pdf)
Customer avatar
William M April 16, 2015 1:04 am UTC
The full listing makes things a lot clearer. Thank you.
Customer avatar
Douglas B April 17, 2015 1:41 pm UTC
This version is written for the new 7th-edition Call of Cthulhu rules, but includes details on running it with earlier editions. For now, my group and I are running it using "6.75": 6th edition with a couple of the 7th-edition changes rolled in, and it hasn't caused any difficulties.

There is a *lot* of material in this release, as Charlie K's comment below (and the updated listing) make clear. I personally think it's well worth the money: for my group, this campaign is going to provide well over a year's worth of play on its own.
Customer avatar
Scott G April 17, 2015 2:21 pm UTC
Will M., you would be amazed at what you get in the boxed set. My local FLGS had one on the shelf last time I was there. The boxed set is HUGE and HEAVY. It is the size of some of the board games out there and there is NO empty space in the box. None.

The props mentioned above are actual props. So there is an actual matchbox and luggage tags in the boxed set, for example.

Even at $119.95 my FLGS has already two of the campaign. And they aren't a big operation that can have multiple copies of that sort of product on the shelf.

I don't know about the PDF, but you seem to get your money's worth from the boxed set.
Customer avatar
Łukasz K April 17, 2015 7:00 pm UTC
As much as this campaign is awesome, the price is ridiculous. This is several times the price of the main rulebook. Like the OP said - don't expect many sales with this amount. It seems you are matching the summarized price of the all printed books when they were released - this is a wrong attitude. Remember that the buyer will most probably have to print the books to use them during a session, so this bumps the costs even higher.

The nearly most awesome and at the same time most costly single Cthulhu campaign currently is standing at ~25$. Even the whole series of very good Cthulhu adventures amounts to ~80$ (but drop to 25% of that during sales). You really really should rethink your pricing.

I remember the original releases of this campaign and I don't know where did you get these page number from, cause they were at ~50 pager each. Are you sure you didn't get some fake page numbers from an ebook reader? They count pages very differently than in print.

This is one of the...See more
Customer avatar
Mark S July 31, 2015 1:32 am UTC
I have no problem with the pricing on this, but Lukasz K raises a good point about the listed page counts. According to the information above, the books total over 1000 pages. That just doesn't sound right. Can anyone confirm this?
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This title was added to our catalog on April 09, 2015.