On November 2nd, 1936, the world died.

Only 100 copies of this faux-leatherbound limited edition Cthulhu Apocalypse exist in this reality. 50 will be made available to customers in the US & Canada, and 50 will be made available to customers outside the US & Canada. The books are faux leather with gold foil, and each one includes a sticky-backed book plate signed by Graham Walmsley and Gareth Ryder-Hanrahan, which you can add to your book.

Cthulhu Apocalypse takes place after the stars had come right; and things that lurked under the seas for eons rose to claim their rightful place. Now, they rule the earth, stalking it like titans.

Millions of women and men died—yet you survived, doomed to wander the ruins, searching for answers. What went wrong? Are there others like you? How can you stay alive? And is there a way to put this right?

Cthulhu Apocalypse is a survival horror supplement for the Trail of Cthulhu roleplaying game that takes Investigators into a terrifying post-apocalyptic world.

Using the award-winning Apocalypse Machine, GMs can destroy the world any number of ways—including the death rays of alien tripods, a plague of white flowers, or the rising of Great Old Ones—and run adventures of investigation and survival in a land transformed beyond recognition.


Cthulhu Apocalypse
includes:

  • The Apocalypse Machine, an award-winning GUMSHOE sandbox setting that gives you the tools to create your own global catastrophe—from the first strange rumblings to the final, cataclysmic event—along with Drives, Occupations, and more for adventures among the ruins.
  • Five adventures in the aftermath of disaster, taking Investigators through Britain, across the sea to America, and beyond the veils of reality as they struggle to survive. (Previously published as The Dead White World.)
  • Three adventures set years later, as the few survivors find their humanity cracking and moulting in the process of becoming something new. (Previously published as Slaves of the Mother.)
  • Eight all-new scenarios that give your players the choice as to whether—and how—humanity survives in this strange new world.
Stock #: PELGT40L Author: Graham Walmsley, Gareth Ryder-Hanrahan
Artist: Alessandro Alaia Pages: 216, hardback book – includes PDF

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Ruth, over on the Illuminerdy, reviewed the Doomsday Edition of Cthulhu Apocalypse. Thanks Ruth! You can find the entire review on the Illuminerdy. Ruth says,
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“I found the Apocalypse Machine engaging in its versatility. It allows for an immense variety of apocalypses with even more resulting situations. A lot of post-apocalyptic writing, even in gaming, locks you into a very specific vision of the apocalypse. I think when it comes to horror gaming, the effectiveness depends in part on what people find personally horrifying. The machine allows a GM to tinker to her and/or her players’ fears about the end of the world and provides ample support for creating whatever world they end up in.”

“That part of the book fascinated me more because it had potentials I haven’t seen in most other post-apocalyptic games. What I appreciated most about the scenarios was that the path they followed was one which again diverges from the “standard” post-apocalyptic game settings.”

“Ultimately, if you want to play Trail of Cthulhu but you’re tired of stopping the apocalypse and want to try something different, this is the book for you. I found it thorough in imagining how things might play out, throwing off suggestions while leaving room for your improvisation. The character-building section was a strong Trail hack. And whether or not you play the scenarios as written, reading them will help any GM who’s trying to figure out how to run post-apocalyptic Investigations vs. post-apocalyptic shoot-em-ups.”

Pick up Cthulhu Apocalypse at the Pelgrane booth at GenCon, or pre-order in the store (PDF included).

On November 2nd, 1936, the world died.

Finally, the stars had come right; and things that lurked under the seas for eons rose to claim their rightful place. Now, they rule the earth, stalking it like titans.

Millions of women and men died—yet you survived, doomed to wander the ruins, searching for answers. What went wrong? Are there others like you? How can you stay alive? And is there a way to put this right?

Cthulhu Apocalypse is a survival horror supplement for the Trail of Cthulhu roleplaying game that takes Investigators into a terrifying post-apocalyptic world.

Using the award-winning Apocalypse Machine, GMs can destroy the world any number of ways—including the death rays of alien tripods, a plague of white flowers, or the rising of Great Old Ones—and run adventures of investigation and survival in a land transformed beyond recognition.


Cthulhu Apocalypse
includes:

  • The Apocalypse Machine, an award-winning GUMSHOE sandbox setting that gives you the tools to create your own global catastrophe—from the first strange rumblings to the final, cataclysmic event—along with Drives, Occupations, and more for adventures among the ruins.
  • Five adventures in the aftermath of disaster, taking Investigators through Britain, across the sea to America, and beyond the veils of reality as they struggle to survive. (Previously published as The Dead White World.)
  • Three adventures set years later, as the few survivors find their humanity cracking and moulting in the process of becoming something new. (Previously published as Slaves of the Mother.)
  • Eight all-new scenarios that give your players the choice as to whether—and how—humanity survives in this strange new world.
Stock #: PELGT40 Author: Graham Walmsley, Gareth Ryder-Hanrahan
Artist: Alessandro Alaia Pages: 216, hardback book – includes PDF

Buy the standard edition

Buy the limited edition

Slaves_Cover_finalThe long-awaited conclusion of the Cthulhu Apocalypse campaign.

Three years ago, the world died.

Horrors now stalk the empty and overgrown streets of the civilisation that once existed here. The passage of three long, strange years has transformed the world into an unrecognisable landscape of horrors. There are a few survivors, living in the ruins of the past, but under the unfathomable pressure of the Mythos, their humanity is slipping away, cracking and moulting in the process of becoming something new.

Will the Investigators survive to the end – or will they even want to?

Slaves of the Mother contains the final three scenarios for Graham Walmsley’s Cthulhu Apocalypse. Written by Gareth Ryder-Hanrahan, it is supported by the Gold ENnie-winning The Apocalypse Machine campaign setting for Trail of Cthulhu.

 

Stock #: PELGT31D Author: Gareth Ryder-Hanrahan, Graham Walmsley
Artist: Alessandro Alaia Pages: 76pg PDF

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by Gareth Hanrahan

[This is an extract from the introduction to the forthcoming installment of the Cthulhu Apocalypse series. Previous installments are The Dead White World, a set of three linked adventures, and The Apocalyse Machine, the rules engine for creating your own apocalypse.]

 

It is now the summer of 1939. The decision that the characters made in the alien city of Shk’hrnwr continues to haunt England. Horrors now stalk the empty and overgrown streets of the civilisation that once existed here. The passage of three long, strange years has transformed the world into an unrecognisable landscape of horrors. There are a few survivors, living in the ruins of the past, but under the unfathomable pressure of the Mythos, their humanity is slipping away, cracking and moulting in the process of becoming something new.

Three Years Gone…

What has happened to the player characters in the last three years? Presumably, they are all still alive (though if any of the players wish to retire their previous characters and create replacements, let them) and have found some place of refuge. This refuge must have

  • A source of fresh water, untainted by the Flowers
  • Easy access to scavenged canned food (or some other food source)
  • A place to hide from the Creatures.

Optionally,

  • Several other people beyond the player characters live there
  • The existence of the refuge is a mystery – there is no clear reason why the Creatures rarely come here
  • The refuge is a well-known landmark, perhaps a former police station, country house or hotel

Even if other people live at the refuge, the player characters are the leaders and defenders of the settlement.

The refuge should not be

  • Mobile
  • Underground
  • Impregnable

or

  • Pleasant

Do not spend too much time detailing the refuge. It won’t last long (and let the players know that).

Alternatively, it is possible that there is no refuge. The characters might survive for years as scavengers and nomads, criss-crossing the wreck of England as they strive to avoid the ever-present Creatures.

It is worth reviewing The Decaying Earth section of The Apocalypse Machine for ideas on presenting the crumbling remains of human civilisation.

Downtime

Ask the players what transpired in the last three years. Did they run from the rise of the Deep Ones at Blackpool and flee to higher ground in the Yorkshire Dales? Perhaps they wandered in terror until they found a miraculous place of safety, or were scattered and travelled separately until they met up again recently.

Optionally, allow the players to each spend up to three points from Investigative Abilities of their choice, representing their characters’ activities and efforts during these three years. Benefits for spending these points are noted below. If a skill is not listed, then we couldn’t think of a suitable benefit – maybe you or your players can, though!

Skills marked with a * give one Affliction point if a character invests time in them, if you are using the Affliction rules from The Apocalypse Machine.

Anthropology: You’ve studied how human society has changed under the pressure of the Mythos, and heard rumours about other settlements and sanctuaries across England. A 1-point spend lets the character find out about the ‘safe zone’ in Brighton; a 2-point spend picks up rumours about a secret military project preparing to fight back against the Creatures. A 3-point spend gets the characters a rumour about another settlement of your choice.

Agriculture: You were able to grow food even under these harsh conditions. For each point spent, one character may permanently increase his Health by 1.

Archaeology: You put your expertise in excavating ancient civilisations to work in recovering the remains of your own. For each point spent, the character gains a temporary 2-point pool of Scavenging.

Architecture: You have learned to find hiding places and safe areas in the ruins where the Creatures rarely go. For each point spent, you may nominate a safe place in an urban area where you can rest and recuperate.

Art: You’ve channelled your horrific experiences into your art. You may increase your maximum Sanity by 1 for each point of Art spent. However, anyone who looks at your art must make a Sanity test at a Difficulty of 2+the number of points of Art spent.

Assess Honesty: If you were part of a refuge, you were responsible for vetting newcomers. For each point spent, you may describe a suitably reliable and stalwart member of your refuge.   

Astronomy*: You’ve watched the stars twist and change as the years passed by. For each point spent, the character gains a temporary 1-point pool of Cthulhu Mythos.

Biology*: You’ve studied the Creatures, and know more than most about how they kill – and how to kill them! For each point spent, you gain a +2 bonus to any one General Ability roll to avoid danger or inflict damage. For example, you could invoke your Biology studies when making a Sense Trouble roll that involves the Flowers, or say that you know where to shoot a Deep One with Shooting. This bonus applies only once, but if you’ve got multiple bonuses, you can stack them or split them between rolls.

Botany: You’ve made a study of the Flowers. This works just like Biology, above, but only applies to the Flowers. The bonus per point spent is increased to +3.

Bureaucracy: You’ve collated records and made notes about places where you are likely to find supplies, such as old military bases, canning factories, warehouses and the like. For each point spent, the character gains a temporary 2-point pool of Scavenging.

Craft: You spent your time fortifying your Refuge. For each point invested, you may describe an improvement to the Refuge’s defences or amenities.

Cryptography*: You managed to salvage a working radio, and spent many sleepless nights listening to the strange squeal of radio messages passing through the ether. With a 1-point spend, the character hears horrible messages of the destruction of Helsinki, when a ‘great eye opened and the city burned’. A 2-point spend lets the character detect and decode the ramblings of a madman in a lighthouse off the coast of Wales, whose fevered transmissions speak of mysterious black ships, possibly some sort of refugee transport, travelling west. A 3-point spend means the character catches the tail end of a transmission from HMS Hood, a British warship that was in Portsmouth when the apocalypse struck. Apparently, the ship survived and is communication with someone called Cavendish. The radio transmission confirms that some cargo from the ship was successfully delivered to this Cavendish.

Cthulhu Mythos*: You suffer from blackouts and strange nightmares. Sometimes, you’ve woken up in strange places outside the Refuge with no memory of how you got there. Alien words rise unbidden to your lips on certain nights. There is no immediate benefit to this spend, but a kind and benevolent Keeper may decide that your somnolent wanderings brought you some secret advantage. Maybe you found something while sleepwalking, or dreamed something that may benefit you greatly.

Forensics*: You spent several years studying the victims of the Creatures, and now know a great deal about the curious natures of their deaths. For each point spent, the character gains a 3-point pool in First Aid that can be applied only to injuries caused by the Creatures.

Geology: You surveyed the land around your Refuge, and identified useful geographical features. A 1-point spend allows the character to describe a cave nearby to hide in; a 2-point spend discovers an underground spring uninfected by the Flowers; a 3-point spend lets the character find signs of a vast sigil drawn across the whole country in the folds of hills and valleys. This troubling revelation is worth a 3-point Sanity test.

History: You have invested time and energy in preserving the culture and learning of a rapidly vanishing age. For each point invested, you may gain 1 point of Sanity. You also gain the Pillar of Sanity “Preservation of Learning”.

Leadership: You became the leader of your little band of survivors. For each point of Leadership invested, you allow another character to invest an extra point in downtime activities.

Locksmith: You fortified the Refuge. For every point spent, you can describe an improvement made to the Refuge’s security.

Navigation: You mapped the region around your Refuge. For each point invested, you gain a temporary pool of 2 points in Stealth when moving around the immediate area.

Oral History: You’ve picked up various useful rumours. A 1-point spend lets the character find out about the ‘safe zone’ in Brighton; a 2-point spend picks up rumours about a secret military project preparing to fight back against the Creatures. A 3-point spend gets the characters a rumour about another settlement of your choice.

Outdoorsman*: You’ve learned how to survive in this strange new world. For each point invested, you may increase your Stealth, Preparedness or Fleeing rating by 1.

Pharmacy: You’ve stockpiled medical supplies and other useful drugs by ransacking pharmacies. For each point invested, you gain a 2-point pool that can be applied to Preparedness, First Aid or Scavenging rolls related to drugs.

Photography*: You spent months photographing and documenting the movements of the Creatures. You now have a library of ghastly photographs depicting their weird behaviour. For each point of Photography spent, you gain a 1-point pool that can be substituted for any Cthulhu Mythos, Medicine, Forensics or Intuition spend.

Physics*: You have studied how the fundamental laws of physics have changed since the Apocalypse. A 1-point spend has no benefit. A 2-point spend increases your Cthulhu Mythos score by 1. A 3-point spend lets the investigator formulate a new theory of physics that may be of interest to certain parties in the second scenario…

Strategy: You plotted escape routes and lines of defence around the refuge. For each point spend, you may describe one such preparation you made in anticipation of the day when the refuge was no longer safe.

Theology: Since the world ended, you have devoted yourself to eschatological studies, in a vain attempt to justify this horror to yourself. You may either gain 1 point of Sanity for every point invested, as well as the Pillar of Sanity ‘Faith in God’, or deliberately crumble one of your Pillars of Sanity (to protect you from the psychological damage of having it smashed).

Sources of Stability, Pillars of Sanity & Drives

Optionally, player characters who lost Sources of Stability in the Apocalypse may choose to switch to new, living Sources in the form of other survivors. Two sample Sources are described below. Any such non-player character Sources of Stability should not be on a par with investigators – they may be able to survive in this strange new world, but they cannot find clues or take an active part in these scenarios.

Similarly, player characters may choose to replace lost or meaningless Pillars of Sanity with new ones more suited to the post-Apocalyptic environment. For example, a character whose Pillar was “England Prevails” might change it to “England Can Be Reclaimed”; one who formerly valued God might lose her faith and become focussed on her own personal survival.

Finally, Drives that no longer fit a character can be exchanged for something else. See The Apocalypse Machine for post-Apocalyptic Drives.

As you may remember we ran a competition to celebrate the release of The Dead White World, the first part of the Cthulhu Apocalypse series. The second part, the rules for creating your own apocalypse scenarios, The Apocalypse Machine is also available to buy from our shop.

You can find the questions to the competition here.

The Answers

1. War of the Worlds by H.G. Wells
2. The Road by Cormac McCarthy
3. Nyarlathotep by H. P. Lovecraft
4. The Scarlet Plague by Jack London
5. The Death Of Grass by John Christopher
6. A Wrinkle In The Skin by John Christopher
7. The World in Winter by John Christopher
8. The Chrysalids by John Wyndham
9. The Drowned World by J. G. Ballard
10. The Purple Cloud by M. P. Shiel
11. The Day of the Triffids by John Wyndham
12. The Call of Cthulhu by H. P. Lovecraft
13. The Book of Revelation by John

 

Matt McElroy over at Flames Rising has put up a preview of The Dead White World. It includes an extract from the first adventure and is a precursor to a week of Pelgrane-themed content (date TBC). You can read the full preview here.

A review of The Dead White World on rpg.net. 10 out of 10

…it is a superb adventure and does deliver a very distinctive “Cthulhu experience” sure to jolt even the most knowledgeable and seasoned of players.

photo

The winner of the Grand Prize in the Cthulhu Apocalypse Competition is Benjamin Charvet. He gets Play Unsafe, A Taste For Murder and a signed copy of the Eternal Lies Suite. We are sifting through the individual winners, and we’ll announce them soon.

Here are the answers:

1. The War of the Worlds by H.G. Wells
2. The Road, by Cormac McCarthy
3. Nyarlathotep, by H. P. Lovecraft
4. The Scarlet Plague, by Jack London
5. The Death Of Grass, by John Christopher
6. A Wrinkle In The Skin, by John Christopher.
7. The World in Winter, by John Christopher.
8. The Chrysalids, by John Wyndham
9. The Drowned World, by J. G. Ballard.
10. The Purple Cloud, by M. P. Shiel
11. The Day of the Triffids, by John Wyndham.
12. The Call of Cthulhu, by H. P. Lovecraft
13. The Book of Revelation, by John.

Cthulhu Apocalypse Cover 300px

The first part of the highly anticipated Cthulhu Apocalypse campaign.

The Investigators are rendered unconscious by a train crash. When they wake they discover the world has died. White flowers cover the ground and they see, beneath the delicate petals, the faces of the dead. No other human is in sight, everyone is gone.

The struggle to survive the apocalypse takes the Investigators through Britain, across the sea to America and beyond the veils of reality.

The Dead White World contains the first three scenarios for Cthulhu Apocalypse by Graham Walmsley, author of The Purist Adventures.

The Dead White World is supported by The Apocalypse Machine – a new campaign setting for Trail of Cthulhu.

There is a review of Graham Wamlsey’s opening chapters of Cthulhu Apocalpyse here on rpg.net (9/10)

Everyone was very happy with the scenario at its end. It was bleak, very Lovecraftian, and will be remembered as a gaming highlight by myself for many years to come. A lot of the credit for the excellent series of sessions must rest on the author – Graham Walmsley – who has crafted a horrible situation for players to navigate that is not a familiar Mythos monster charging down upon you, or a cult needing foiling. For this original conceit, I must applaud the author. His many sidebars, ideas, and notes (including the Save Vs. Apocalypse sidebar on escaping Dover as it is destroyed) make the scenario an inspiring piece to run.

Stock #: PELGT19D Author: Graham Walmsley
Artist: Alessandro Alaia Pages: 54 pg PDF

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