Mythos in the Media: Board Games!

We’re back with another Mythos in the Media, and this time we’re slinging cardboard. Fans of gaming and the Mythos know, there are A LOT of options when it comes to playing games about Old Ones and insanity, so this time we wanted to show off a couple of favorites and some older or more obscure titles that any fan of Lovecraft’s apathetic cosmos should have on their shelf.

Whether you’re interested in playing investigative cultists or want to embody the dark priest himself, hopefully you can find something to fill that desire here.

Find something amazing we haven’t posted? Drop a line to Simeon and put Unspeakable! in the title.

Without wait, let’s see what the Great Cardboard Gods have for us.

1985 Arkham Horror

  • First on our list is a classic and a perennial favorite, Arkham Horror. Published in 2005 by Fantasy Flight Games, Arkham Horror is a mix of board game and storytelling where the players take on the roles of investigators trying to stop one of many Ancient Ones from entering our world. Since it’s inception, the Arkham Horror brand has become an umbrella for many of Fantasy Flight’s games; Arkham Horror: The Card Game, Call of Cthulhu the Card Game, Elder Sign, Eldritch Horror and Mansions of Madness. While many fans are familiar with the Arkham line, did you know that it’s all based off of an original, 1985 board game also named Arkham Horror? If you have an original copy, send us some photos! I’m sure it’s a rare sight to see.
  • Speaking of Mansions of Madnessit’s such a unique game in the Arkham line that I wanted to give it it’s own entry. Mansions is essentially a dungeon crawling style game where a Game Leader plays as the Mansion trying to thwart the investigators attempts at solving a mystery. It requires deciphering clues that are read to the players on cards, exploration, and solving actual puzzles that are like mini-board games in themself. With a proper sound track, it is a truely immersive game. And for those who are less inclined to run the game, or if players just can’t find a Game Leader, Fantasy Flight released a second edition that uses app support to run the game so that everyone can be an investigator.
  • For those of us who are more on the side of the Old Ones and not the investigators we have Cthluhu WarsA huge game of world conquering madness where a player takes on the role of one of many cults trying to bring about the destruction of the Earth by unleashing spells, cultists, monsters, and ultimately a Great Old One. For fans of beautiful (horrific?) miniatures, this game is a must coming with 64 figures..
  • Maybe you like cultists but are less inclined towards all this seriousness? Enter Cults Across America an older board game that encourages strategy as you romp across the U.S. trying to create a string a lunatics that stretches from coast-to-coast. There are four different ways to play, depending on how serious the players feel like getting, but no matter how serious it’s sure to be hilarious. As a slightly older game (1998) it can be difficult to find, but worth it to those who need a strategic laugh.
  • What if you’re a fan of Cthulhu, but also fan of say…..strategy and strange geometries? Enter The Stars Are Right from Steve Jackson Games. Perhaps hilarity and not strategy is the first thing that comes to mind when you hear the name Steve Jackson, and while the art is classic Munchkin style fare, the game is not. Players take turns attempting to summon alien entities and Old Ones by finding arrangements of stars on a 5×5 tile grid. This sounds easy enough until players start flipping and moving tiles all over the place. The real brain-buster though is that the patterns players are trying to create can happen from any direction, and the patterns may seem like they don’t exists until you look at the board from a different side! This means you’re constantly looking at the grid from all four directions instead of just your side of the table, sure to make even the most devout cultist of strategy’s head spin.

That’s it for this run, but if you know if a particularly great Mythos board game you’d like to share then drop us a line!

Until next time, stay sane.


Coming Soon: Old Ones Rising!

Issue 25 of The Unspeakable Oath is being compiled, designed, and edited but in the meantime we’re excited to introduce Old Ones Rising, a 280-page compilation of issues 18 through 21 of The Oath. Old Ones Rising includes:

  • Eight ready-to-play scenarios! Four for Call of Cthulhu, one for Delta Green: The Role-Playing Game, one for Trail of Cthulhu, one for Cthulhu Dark plus the core Cthulhu Dark rules, and a playset for Fiasco.
  • Arcane artifacts, mysterious manuscripts, and “Tale of Terror” scenario seeds to add to your campaigns.
  • Evocative microfiction.
  • Commentary by editor-in-chief Shane Ivey in the “Dread Page of Azathoth.”
  • In-depth articles to broaden your gaming experience and horrify your players. The corrupt Egyptian pharaoh Nephren-Ka…the Chapel of Contemplation, which expands on the classic scenario “The Haunting”…the horrors of the Depression-era Dust Bowl…a modern-day occultist in over her head…the deadly and loathsome paramours of Y’golonac…and the historical Assassins…and “Directives from A-Cell” for Delta Green.

Old Ones Rising will hit the shelves April 13, and as always will include a free PDF of the magazine.


Now Accepting Submissions for TUO 25!

The title says it all, we’re finally getting The Unspeakable Oath number 25 ready and put together and we need and want your help!

Here’s what we’re looking for:

  • Reviews, especially reviews of Call of Cthulhu Seventh Edition and its supplements from Chaosium and their licensees, and other recent Cthulhu Mythos RPG products. (We do not publish reviews of Arc Dream Publishing or Pagan Publishing products.) See “The Eye of Light and Darkness,” in the link below, for guidelines. Remember, a review for the Oath cannot have been published anywhere else.
  • Micro-fiction. This is very hard to do right, so we always need more. See “Message in a Bottle,” in the link below, for guidelines.
  • A Tale of Terror (see below for guidelines), preferably set in the 1920s or 1930s.
  • A feature article (see below for guidelines) specifically for Call of Cthulhu 7th Edition, about 4,000 words.

The deadline for submissions are as follows:

  • FIRST DRAFTS: Monday, 16 JAN 2017
  • FINAL DRAFTS: Monday, 6 FEB 2017

If this sounds right up your dark, fear choked alley then check out our submission guidelines here


Unspeakable Oath 24 Cover

New Images of Cyanide Studio and Focus Interactive’s CoC PC Game

There hasn’t been much news for Cyanide Studio’s PC adaptation of Chaosium’s Call of Cthulhu. But they’ve just released some screenshots for us to pour over. There is no release date yet, but it is scheduled for some time in 2017.

From the Focus Interactive website:

You are Edward Pierce, a war veteran turned private detective, in the Boston of the 20s. You have been hired to investigate, on the isolated island of Darkwater, the unusual and tragic death of Sarah Hawkins and her family. Soon your investigation will lead you to the fringes of the paranormal, where reality and illusion begins to blend… or is this really the fruit of your imagination?


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The Latest Scenario for Delta Green-Observer Effect-Now Available!

If we look too deeply into the roiling chaos of reality, chaos may look back.

The Olympian Holobeam Array, funded in part by the U.S. Department of Energy, was built to delve into a fringe theory of physics. It uses highly classified technology that its parent company developed in conjunction with the U.S. military.

A few hours ago, the Holobeam Array went online. A few minutes ago, it went offline in a catastrophic power surge. Its engineers soon restored power and communications. Its lead researcher said everything was fine.

Delta Green, a secret agency dedicated to investigating, stopping, and covering-up deadly incursions of unnatural forces, had reason to suspect otherwise. It immediately pulled strings to launch an emergency inspection, sending the players’ Agents to investigate, under cover of a Department of Energy safety inspection.

The Agents have no idea what they’ll find when they reach the Array.

Check out RPGnow to get your copy of Observer Effect