Better Light a Candle

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Revision as of 04:14, 13 April 2022 by 72.80.4.246 (talk)
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Campaign Overview

This is the campaign Wiki for the adventures of the Paladin Society, run on the Cthulhu Eternal Victorian SRD.

I've been a huge fan of the Cthulhu Eternal project since its inception. I've enjoyed Apocthulhu enormously, and I completely endorse the principle of a Cthulhu Mythos SRD based on the huge legacy of material developed since the first editions of Call of Cthulhu in the 1980s. That includes a great deal of off-the-shelf Gaslight material.

A Word on the Title

David Drake's "Than Curse the Darkness[1]" is one of the best Gaslight-era Cthulhu Mythos stories I know. It's also one of the best Cthulhu Mythos stories I know, period. As a tribute to it, and as a natural corollary to the title, I'm taking the other half of its title quote, "Better light a candle than curse the darkness," as the campaign title and premise.

Drake's take on the period he covers very much mirrors my take on the Victorian era. This campaign will be very dark. The darkest parts will often be entirely mundane, and historical artifacts of the Victorian age. That's the world we lived - and still live - in.

Helpful Resources

Characters

The player-characters on the Starkweather-Moore Expedition

Player Character HP WP SAN BP Resources
Some Clever Name Margaret Hollingshead 11 14 70 56 13: 6/6/1, [][][]
Archer [2] 10 11 55 44 6: 6/0/0, []
Roger Doctor Reuben Bell 11 13 65 52 16: 6/6/4, [][][]
brahnamin "Mama" Nguyen 10 17 85 68 4: 4/0/0, []
Regular Guy Emilie Garilound 12 11 55 44 9: 6/3/0, [][]

Important Information and Materials

This is one of the best, broadest sources on the Victorian era:

http://victorian-era.org/

For those with Google Earth, this is Google Earth's interactive map of Victorian London:

https://www.victorianlondon.org/googleearth.htm

Important People

Below are a few of the key figures, as well as others who'll be added as they appear in the course of the campaign.

  • Count Weldon, your mysterious benefactor, a suave and polished man of affairs in early middle age, with a slight suggestion of foreign ancestry.
  • Puck, the mysterious little mudlark acquaintance of Mama Nguyen who may or may not be an actual fairy.
  • Katie Moppet, the little preteen girl who may or may not be the King of the Rattown Sewers.
  • Bill, Dan's brother - and fellow thief?

Important Groups and Places

  • The Vegliantino, the Paladin Society's barge and floating headquarters.
  • The Illustrated Police News, a weekly sensationalist tabloid newspaper, always ready to pounce on the wildest, most scandalous stories.
  • The Bethlem Royal Hospital, otherwise known as Bedlam Asylum; a haven for the troubled soul - or a hell-on-earth of mental torture?
  • The Forty Elephants, London's most notorious gang of all-female criminals.

House Rules and Quirks

Spending Willpower to Make Rolls Succeed

You can spend your Willpower Points on a 1-to-5 basis to improve most skill rolls (but not SAN rolls or damage rolls, or POW tests, or to change normally successful rolls into crits etc.): 1 WP = up to 5%. This represents making that extra effort of will to achieve a success. But in doing so, you're running down your Willpower Points, which can be dangerous. Also, you have to take the full 1-to-5 conversion - no fractions. If your roll has failed by 6%, you have to spend 2 WP for the full 10%.

Remember that you can also spend Willpower to project SAN loss onto Bonds, or to repress insanity. This is different to the above use - and a reminder how important it is to hang on to your WP. Fumbles can cost you WP; resisting interrogation definitely does. WP are needed to fuel hypergeometrical rituals and objects, and are sometimes targeted by offensive rituals. They're also very important for survival in hostile environments - like the Antarctic.

Remember that you suffer an emotional breakdown when your WP hit 2 or below, and total collapse when you hit 0 WP. You regain 1d6 WP after a full, proper night's sleep. Exhaustion and sleeplessness cut into that.