Absinthe In Carcosa

The Handout to End All Handouts

The City Guide That Shatters Reality

At the end of the 19th century, an American art student went to Paris, read a play, and lost his grip on reality.

The play was called The King in Yellow.

Having read it, head reeling from absinthe, bedeviled by unseen adversaries, he realized that the alien world it described, Carcosa, had sunk its traces throughout the City of Lights.

As he explored Paris in search of its decadent influence, he created a scrapbook. A guide for himself, and for those who would come after him.

Yoked together from existing travelogues, newspapers, and the disquieting ephemera of the occult tradition, it laid out a skewed portrait of a haunted city:

  • Art student life, from hazing rituals to fabulous bacchanals at the Moulin Rouge
  • Hangouts and nightspots, from everyday beaneries to ghoulish cabarets
  • Neighborhoods and attractions, with useful maps
  • Sources of knowledge, from museums to institutes of technology
  • Operations of the justice system, from the city’s police to its prisons
  • Rites of death, from funeral fees to the notorious, bone-stacked catacombs
  • Details of everyday life, including currency, communications, and essential phrases
  • A timeline of recent historical events

In the margins appear the increasingly fervid scrawls of the anonymous compiler. Through them determined investigators of the Yellow Sign mystery will learn:

  • Who to seek aid from
  • Where madness lurks
  • And to never waver in their distrust of clowns


Absinthe in Carcosa is an indispensable city guide for The Yellow King Roleplaying Game and a stunning, full-color visual artifact in its own right.

Give it to your players and let them find the mysteries of Paris.

Or let them buy their own deuced copies and keep their snack-festooned fingers off of your pristine edition.

Brought to you by document blandisher extraordinaire Dean Engelhardt and feverish scribbler supreme Robin D. Laws.


Buy now


Buy the complete collection (with The Yellow King RPG and The Missing and the Lost)


Buy the game collection (with The Yellow King RPG)


Stock #: PELGY06 Author: Robin Laws
Artists: Jérôme Huguenin, Christian Knutsson, Dean Engelhardt Format: 8.5″ x 11″, full colour hardback

10 Responses to “Absinthe In Carcosa”

  1. […] Kickstarter-funded Yellow King RPG. The concept behind this 192 lavishly illustrated tome is explained over on the Pelgrane Press website (by Robin D. Laws, no less!). We were involved fairly heavily in turning Robin’s concept into […]

  2. Swofford says:

    Even so, some mystery remains, and this keeps you interested and motivated, and perhaps others, too!

  3. […] book based on detailed notes and outlines written by Robin D. Laws. The original concept was that Absinthe in Carcosa should be a photo-realistic replica of a notebook compiled by an 1890s American art student (of […]

  4. Steve Hammatt says:

    Is this going on general release at the same time as TYK?

    • Becky Smith says:

      Hi Steve. Yes, Absinthe in Carcosa and The Missing and the Lost will be released at the same time as The Yellow King and there will be the option to buy these in a bundle. Thanks. Becky.

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  7. […] (Smooching Knife) Best RPG Related Product Silver – Session Zero (John C. Byram) Gold – Absinthe in Carcosa (Pelgrane Press) Best Electronic Book Silver – Uncaged Volume III (Scribemind) Gold – New […]

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