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Raiders of R’lyeh: Gamemaster’s Guide & Complete Rules
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Raiders of R’lyeh: Gamemaster’s Guide & Complete Rules

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RAIDERS of R’LYEH is a stand-alone roleplaying game and sourcebook in which mercenary rogues explore forbidden frontiers, unearth ancient artifacts, and outwit villainous scum. Derived partly from the Runequest rules that have been released under the Open Game License, the game is crafted to emulate not only adventure in the CTHULHU MYTHOS of H.P. Lovecraft and his circle of influences, but especially the savage and evocative feel of Robert E. Howard’s Mythos and Weird menace stories.

Attention has been made to keep the game mechanics compatible with other percentile systems — while innovating additional rulesets unique to the setting and atmosphere — so those players wishing only to use Raiders of R’lyeh as an Edwardian era adventure sourcebook will have a massive global setting to explore and use in their preexisting Mythos campaign, as well as modular adventure, monster and scenario resources for gaming in 1900-1913. Those players wanting a standalone rulebook with its adventure modes of play, will have a complete toolkit for interacting with the Cthulhu Mythos.

  • A complete sourcebook for expeditions, intrigues and adventures in the pre-Great War Edwardian period (can be used as a rules-independent sourcebook)
  • A wealth of resources about technology, inventions, architecture, weapons, gear, currencies, class structure, etiquette, vehicles, mounts, ports of call, and travel for the period
  • An expansive monster construction kit, with new weird monsters and twists on old favorites from the Mythos, drawn from the works of Lovecraft, Robert E. Howard, M.R. James, William Hope Hodgson, Clark Ashton Smith, Algernon Blackwood, Lafcadio Hearn, among others
  • Hundreds of pages of GM support and world building resources for developing adventures, enemies and organizations
  • A global network of back-alley criminals, controlling gentry, avaricious smugglers and a campaign-spanning conspiracy known only as “The Glove,” drawn from the pre-War era and tradition of Weird adventure
  • Setting creation support — including a collection of organizations from the era, from intelligence agencies to detective bureaus and secret society lodges, as well as ideas for secret factions and cults within these organizations or as separate entities, NPC stats for warlords, criminals, soldiers, spies, thugs, beasts...all the added Kickstarter-backed NPCs and organizations...and more
  • Faction rules, with a complete toolkit for developing your own factions
  • Guidelines for facilitating node-based investigation, using Circles of Influence (derived from other systems), Clue Webs and Scenario Nodes, Networking and Connections rules, and Organization Responses and Hierarchies
  • A robust and extensive chapter on magic, sorcerers, occult works and artifacts from the world of 1910
  • A simple yet robust sanity system integrated into the PC and NPC motives and bonds
  • Options for “pulpier” occultists and occult detectives adventurers — akin to much of Lovecraft’s original material and most of Howard’s, and to the occult detectives in the works of various weird writers such as William Hope Hodgson, Arthur Machen, and so on — for players who want to incorporate pulpier magic into their mythos game
  • New adventurer roles, drives, bonds, and special abilities for players that emulate the period and feel of Weird menace and adventure
  • And much more: new skills, new gear, basic and tactical combat rules, chase rules, etc.
  • Includes an OGL and bibliography of sources, with support for open-ended customization, enabling designers to adapt the game and hack their own settings and derived rules

As a bonus, you receive with your purchase “Dark Swamp,” a 27-page introductory scenario plus an expanded toolkit for developing and using the artifacts, legends, minions and magic of Tsathoggua in your campaign

At over 500 pages, BW, Raiders of R’lyeh comes with a vast assortment of toolkits to build and run your own adventures set in the Mythos!

ABOUT THE PRINT EDITION: What is the difference between the Hardcover B&W Book and Hardcover Color Book (Standard Heavyweight)?

The “Hardcover B&W Books” are printed on 50# white paper, while the “Hardcover Color Book (Standard Heavyweight)” uses a thicker 70# white paper which has better page opacity. Please note that despite being listed as Color, both editions are in black & white. However, some customers notice a discernible difference in quality in the thicker edition, so that option is offered here.

NOTE that the Gamemaster’s Guide & Complete Rules print edition has an alternate “Fire of Asshurbanipal” cover (which may be previewed at

 Customers Who Bought this Title also Purchased
Reviews (0)
Discussions (18)
Customer avatar
Will H October 04, 2018 7:46 pm UTC
Why is there an apparent glowing review on the cover - in quotation marks at that - without any attribution? Why should I assume the entirety of the product is not also a con-job?
Customer avatar
Will H October 04, 2018 7:57 pm UTC
And why does it cost more "on sale" than the game it's a knock-off of?
Customer avatar
Matthew R November 29, 2018 5:19 pm UTC
I don't see anything suggesting that quote is from a review (and there's nothing about it I would call "glowing"). It looks to me like a simple description of the game -- a mission statement, if you will. A bit odd for that to be on the front cover, in quotation marks, instead of on the back cover, but that doesn't make it a "con-job".
Customer avatar
Will H December 21, 2018 9:06 pm UTC
Why would a statement from the publisher or author on the cover be in quotation marks?

If it's "odd," why are you defending it? You work for the publisher? Friends with the author?
Customer avatar
Dale E September 01, 2018 8:52 am UTC
Underrated game. Very fun and thorough.
Customer avatar
September 05, 2018 7:01 pm UTC
Thank you Dale! We’d love to hear play reports from your group.
Customer avatar
Perry M September 01, 2018 2:32 am UTC
How can we get the one with the 'Fire of Asshurbanipal' cover?
Customer avatar
September 05, 2018 7:00 pm UTC
Thank you for the question. The Raiders of R’lyeh: Gamemaster’s Guide & Complete Rules print edition has the Fire of Asshurbanipal cover as the default.
Customer avatar
Perry M September 09, 2018 1:28 pm UTC
Okay. So, not the cover that is featured here with the burly dude. That's very confusing, but thank you.
Customer avatar
John D August 09, 2018 11:48 pm UTC
Are there still plans for a Dreamlands expansion of the setting, that I remember reading about in an interview a while back?
Customer avatar
Gary F April 26, 2018 10:11 pm UTC
How do you get the POD?
Customer avatar
April 27, 2018 4:28 am UTC
Thanks for asking. We want to make sure all the backers get their books first — we’re almost done fulfilling those right now. Then we’ll make POD editions available in the store.
Customer avatar
Jeff W March 11, 2018 5:11 am UTC
Any news about the POD version?
Customer avatar
March 20, 2018 11:48 pm UTC
Thanks for asking!. We want to make sure all the backers get their books first — we’re fulfilling those right now. Then we’ll start working on making POD editions available here.
Customer avatar
Jeff W March 23, 2018 6:26 pm UTC
Thanks for the info...definitely looking forward to the POD.
Customer avatar
Jacek B March 07, 2018 6:24 am UTC
Does the DT RPG add dust jackets and gold foiled stamping to their printing? I'm curioius how "collector's edition" for Kickstarter will be done via DT RPG.
Customer avatar
Jacek B September 21, 2017 6:50 pm UTC
Are comments here moderated? I left a comment with no answer and it's gone now. I was only wondering why after years after backing this project I don't see the final project and since December there was no official word on this project. Game looks great but the way communication and handling how the KS was done - a disaster.
Customer avatar
September 19, 2017 4:03 am UTC
The final version is not a bad game, albeit somewhat late. Will the promised final version of the Core Rules Document also be released at some point?
Customer avatar
John D September 19, 2017 3:22 am UTC
I forgot to add that I go by John D., and my comment/review is below.
Customer avatar
John D September 19, 2017 2:43 am UTC
I was a backer of this Kickstarter and just received the final version today. Since I didn't purchase it from the site, I can't give a proper review, but I'd like to briefly give folks an idea of what one can expect from this. Raiders of R'lyeh is set in the Georgian period of the early 1900's, the tumultuous years between the gilded Victorian Age and the carnage of the First World War. It is extremely well written and researched to give the player the proper feel for the setting and provide for them accordingly, be it occult knowledge of the era, or proper period weapons when facing a rough situation. One could develop a character from a number of nationalities - say, for example, an Ottoman archaeologist/mystic (possibly Mevelevi Dervish) investigating horrors in the deserts of the Arabian Peninsula in the final crumbling days of the empire. However, perhaps the greatest selling point for this game are the toolkits/generators. These range from creating eldritch tomes to planar gate locations. Especially useful...See more
Customer avatar
Jeffrey V January 17, 2019 8:54 am UTC
Actually, that would be the "Edwardian Age." The Georgian era was roughly the time between the end of Queen Anne's reign, and the Regency period of English history (that is, prior to the period of the Napoleonic Wars). This game is set in the decade prior to World War I, not a hundred plus years earlier -- just in case anyone is confused!
Customer avatar
Elizabeth C September 16, 2017 8:13 pm UTC
Is this the same version that was released to backers?
Customer avatar
Gordon C September 16, 2017 12:48 am UTC
Quentin, I see you've answered some questions below, but have neglected to post anything to the Raiders of R'lyeh page or on Kickstarter. You had to know that releasing the final product here on RPGNow before sending it out to your backers after three years if delays would be a slap in the face. I can only assume that you have a good reason for doing this, but ignoring the people who gave you money years ago to help you see your game be released is kust foolish. I think at this point in time, you are all out of good will by anyone who backed your Kickstarter. A lot if people have been waiting very patiently for you to finish Raiders of R'lyeh and ignoring them is a ridiculously bad idea. Sure we want the hardcover books, but giving us the final PDFs would be a step in the right direction. If not through vouchers here, you could easily send out the latest files via BackerKit. Please do the right thing, either by responding to me here or posting an update on Kickstarter. Whatever. Just let us know what...See more
Customer avatar
September 16, 2017 3:53 am UTC
Gordon, I just double-checked your Backerkit account and confirmed that you received these PDFs 9 months ago, along with the other backers who got an early release of the game.

If you have trouble with your downloads, please send me an email at mail AT thecipherbureau DOT com and I'll get you sorted out tomorrow.
Customer avatar
Brian C September 15, 2017 11:41 am UTC
A wealth of information in this game. Any chance for GM screen inserts?
Customer avatar
September 16, 2017 3:59 am UTC
It's something we'd like to do if we can get to it, but it's not in the immediate plans. Great idea.
Customer avatar
John D September 12, 2017 9:13 pm UTC
Are there plans for a POD for the game?
Customer avatar
September 12, 2017 10:34 pm UTC
Yes, we are working on it though we don’t yet have an exact delivery date.
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