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Cthulhu Hack: The Haunter of the Dark $10.99
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Cthulhu Hack: The Haunter of the Dark
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Cthulhu Hack: The Haunter of the Dark
Publisher: Just Crunch Games
by Björn L. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 08/21/2023 14:09:37
The haunter returns - a Mehisto review

The Haunter of the Dark

The story The Haunter of the Dark by H.P. Lovecraft not only provides the title, but also the starting point for an adventure, which was revised for the 2nd edition of Cthulhu Hack. The book consists of three parts.

The first part of the book deals with how to use stories like The Haunter of the Dark to develop adventures for Cthulhu Hack. In addition to the approach of taking the story, analyzing it, and adding footnotes, it shows how to use it as a role-playing setting. The introduction also describes, in general, how such stories are usually structured and how this structure can be used as a template for building adventures. In doing so, the “onion model” is also described here, which summarizes the layers of dangers and revelations and thus visualizes the layers of such a story.

The concrete analysis and treatment of the story The Haunter of the Dark makes up the third part of the book. This chapter reprints the complete original story and marks it with footnotes and references to possible tests, backgrounds, story ideas, and so on. Thus, one reads the story of Robert Blake, who is attracted to an abandoned church and stumbles upon the legacy of the Starry Wisdom sect. On the other hand, it presents notes and ideas on how to use this template for the game. Thus, one learns about the tests and challenges that would have affected the protagonist if he had been a character of the role-playing game.

The main body of the book in the middle is such an adventure, Horrible Abysses, which acts as a continuation of the original story. The player characters get on the trail of the missing Robert Blake and have to realize that the horror he faced still lingers. This story focuses on the investigative work about Blake's disappearance and St. John's Church, so the adventure offers many approaches and scenes to solve the mystery before an inevitable confrontation. An interesting approach here is that there are several explanations and backgrounds for the mythos antagonist, the Haunter, which the game master can choose from.

In addition to the specific adventure, The Haunter of the Dark offers a practical approach to using existing stories from the mythos as a basis for role-playing. It presents this concept in detail, using the titular story as an example. With this combination, the book offers an compelling sourcebook for Cthulhu Hack, which has been somewhat revised and supplemented for the 2nd edition but, in essence, corresponds to the earlier edition.

(Björn Lippold)

[4 of 5 Stars!]
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