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The Primal State
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The Primal State

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A Campaign for Classic-Era Call of Cthulhu,
Ideally set in Vermont, 1925-1930

To the Southern New-Englander entering Vermont for the first time there is sense of mystic revivification. On the towns of the lower coast the blight of mutation and modernity has descended. Weird metamorphoses and excrescences, architectural and topographical, mark a menacing tyranny of mechanism and vice-royalty of engineering which are fast hurrying the present scene out of all linkage with its historical antecedents and setting it adrift anchorless and all but traditionless in alien oceans . . . . Reservoirs, billboards and concrete roads, power lines, garages, and flamboyant inns . . . these things and things like them have brought ugliness, tawdriness and commonplaceness to the urban penumbra. Only in the remoter backwoods can one find the pristine and ancestral beauty which was Southern New-England's.

H.P. Lovecraft, "Vermont--A First Impression," (1927).
Reprinted in Miscellaneous Writings, H.P. Lovecraft (S. T. Joshi, ed.),
Arkham House Publishers, Inc. (1995).

THE PRIMAL STATE is a campaign for classic era Call of Cthulhu, ideally set in the 1925-1930 timeframe, and occurring mostly in the state of Vermont. The investigators should expect to encounter the weird legends of New England, and the campaign was written with an eye to establishing and maintaining a subtle, eerie, but nonetheless challenging atmosphere. Witches, burial mounds, legendary monsters, headless specters, cloven hoof prints, entropy, the decay of tradition, and Old Scratch himself in a beguiling mood — these are what The Primal State is about. This is not, however, a non-Mythos campaign; the works of Lovecraft, Lin Carter, and Robert E. Howard were influential. The sub-themes in each adventure, likewise are purposefully Lovecraftian: the price of a scientific society in terms of societal decay (Invitation to the Dance, The Sap Keeps Running); atavistic corruption and exploitation by alien monstrosities (The Beast of Lake Champlain, The Sap Keeps Running); and ancient curses and cosmic nihilism against which only temporary victories can be achieved (Home, Sweet Home). An unusual Shub-Niggurath cult, Zvilpoggua — the Feaster from the Stars, ruins dating from ancient Hyperborea, a link to the Dreamlands, and black altars to forgotten gods; all of these play a central role.

MISKATONIC UNIVERSITY LIBRARY ASSOCIATION monographs are longer works by one or more authors on a subject of import to Call of Cthulhu roleplayers. On these products the author has also fulfilled the functions of editor and layout artist; we at Chaosium have done little in the way of editorial. We found these works compelling and thought that you would enjoy them. Through the publication of monographs we can offer our most loyal fans more information more easily, and evaluate the potential of these works for eventual release to the wholesale market.


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140 +cover
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10.58 MB
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File Last Updated:
June 29, 2010
This title was added to our catalog on June 29, 2010.