As an avid role playing gamer you've always had the sneaking suspicion that Cthulhu was just biding his time while waiting for the perfect moment to show himself. Achtung! Cthulhu shows the rest of the world that we've always been at war with Old Ones it's just a matter of perspective. This week's Kickstarter Knuggets follows an expansion for a 32 year old roleplaying game. Along with the tabletop game there's a conclusion to one of the most iconic adventure video games of all time and a card game where you imagine fun ways to kill of your friends. Let's just hope you have the type of friends who are ok with you plotting their demise.
Call of Cthulhu is a roleplaying game based on the horror of the H.P. Lovecraft universe. If you're familiar with basic roleplaying games you know that your standard setting is a fantasy world where elves and fairies are just as common as humans and swords. In Call of Cthulhu we've fast forwarded to the 1920's and instead of orcs, goblins, and gnolls we're now pitted against the minions of the Old Gods.
Achtung! Cthulhu aims to expand on the Call of Cthulhu and Savage World roleplaying universes by bringing the fight of this mystical world to the 1940's. That's right the war with the tentacle clad Old God has spilled over into the Second World War. You'll be able to play both sides of the campaign, Allied and Axis, in an effort to twist the otherworldly powers of the gods to your will. Your weapons have also been upgraded, you'll use Thompson submachine guns, molotov cocktails, mysterious spells, vile creatures, and pretty much anything else at your disposal to wreak havoc on your enemies.
This unique variation on a well-loved roleplaying dynamic is refreshed by the addition of two different sides. You can choose between either the Axis or the Allied forces. Axis players will use the Keeper's Guide to the Secret War - a ~248 page guide with illustrations by Dim Martin that outlines the methods and madness behind launching a full scale offensive on the Investigators. For those who side with the Allied forces there is The Investigator's Guide to the Secret War - a ~128 page companion that features a cover by Spanish artist Pinturero and illustrations by Dim Martin.
If you enjoy getting together with friends and rolling for initiative then this might be the Cthulhu game for you. Modiphius Games has created a Kickstarter campaign to gauge fan interest and to fund an initial printing. They've already blown past their primary funding goals and now they're working on stretch goals which include hard bound copies of the two guide books as well as expansions for the Achtung! Cthulhu campaign.
Supporters can expect to nab fully illustrated PDF versions of the two guide books at the initial reward tiers. At higher tiers (£40 and above) you'll receive a physical copy of the game including any hard-cover versions if the stretch goals are met. Some of the limited tiers are already gone in which you could get your likeness modeled onto one of the heroes or villains in the mythos ( £100).
If you're unfamiliar with The Longest Journey you should know that it's an enormously engrossing adventure and puzzle game that so far spans thousands of years. Developed by Funcom and released in 2000 the story follows April Ryan a young artist who's living in an alternate future. April is haunted by strange dreams of an even stranger world and she is soon pulled this dimension where she discovers a land in turmoil. There are two different realities that April can explore; Stark, our world, is an advanced society dedicated to science & technology; Arcadia a magical world devoted to understanding, love and art.
As you move between the two worlds you'll interact with dozens of different characters and uncover the reason balance between them is slowly dissolving. In order to succeed in the world of The Longest Journey and its sequel Dreamfall: The Longest Journey you'll need to get comfortable talking with the various characters and solving the many different puzzles that stand in your way. At its core The Longest Journey is an examination of April as a central character and her interactions between the different people in each of the two worlds.
In November 2012 Ragnar Tørnquist, creator and lead designer on The Longest Journey, founded a new development studio called Red Thread Games and secured the rights to a new chapter in The Longest Journey saga. The new game entitled Dreamfall Chapter: The Longest Journey would put us in control of April once again in her quest to save the dream world of Arcadia while restoring balance between it and our world. Players will conclude "the Dreamer Cycle and the gripping story of Zoë, the Dreamer" according the Kickstarter page. Ragnar has assembled a team of dedicated individuals many who have worked on the previous games in the series. The Kickstarter has already passed its initial goals and is well on its way to completing its first stretch goal with over two weeks left in its funding cycle.
There's a few stretch goals to keep in mind. The Loremaster (in-game library, books, lore), Mac and Linux versions, Longer Journey (expanded content with added characters), Storytime (a "story so far" graphic novel), A Richer World (improved soundtrack and gallery in-game), and voice overs for more languages.
Supporters are able to dedicate different amounts of money and at certain tiers they can select from some common Kickstarter benefits. You can get a digital copy of the soundtrack, a custom printed art book, a limited physical run of the game signed & numbered, signed concept art, and you can even have your likeness crafted onto a character in the game. Many of the custom or limited tiers are already sold out so get in now while your selected tier is available.
Machine of Death
A fast paced game that rewards creativity and absurdity. An ever-changing battlefield where you're challenged to find new ways to kill off your best friends. Come up with the most imaginative death for the ones you love. Sound like fun? Machine of Death might just be the card game that's missing from your collection. This inventive game is created by the same people who brought you the best-selling crowdsourced novel of the same name: Machine of Death.
David Malki, the creator of the webcomic Wondermark, is the man behind the campaign but he's also enlisted the help of a collection of podcasters, webcasters, comic writers, and artists that know how to improvise on the fly. This dynamism is where much of the comedy behind Machine of Death comes from.
How do you and your friends participate in this sadistic contest? Well in Machine of Death you're given a card with a cause of death listed on it. There's not much else to go on but in order to score points you're asked to come up with a description of how somebody came by this form of "termination". It might be a innocent item such as a piece of tape but as they say "the Devil is in the details".
The Kickstarter page gives an example of a player that's "given a person who is slated to die by BANANA PEEL, but is currently in (let's say) a space station...how do you make it happen? All you have at your disposal is a tool, a liquid, and a piece of furniture". Can you manage to turn a banana peel into a deadly space weapon?
As you can see this is part charades, part clue, and all improvisational fun. So why hasn't it been created already? Well that's where you come in. As a supporter you'll be helping to fund the first production run and you'll also be able to claim some crowdfunding goodies in the process.
Initially there were limited tiers that gave supporters the ability to "make up a new death card that will be included in every copy of the game" or craft your likeness "on one of the victims that is killed in the game's official rulebook". These sold out quickly but you can still nab a limited version of the game, you can even select a digital version that saves trees from being cut down for use in cardstock! Some of the higher level limited edition tiers are still available as are the levels intended for retailers and distributors.