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Lovecraftian Role-Playing Games
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In 1981, Chaosium released “Call of Cthulhu,” a role-playing game set in Lovecraft’s fictional world. It has since won numerous awards and been translated into many languages. However, prior to its first publication, TSR included a “Cthulhu Mythos” chapter in its Deities and Demigods and Chaosium included an “H.P. Lovecraft Creations” chapter in its The Gateway Bestiary. Since the publication of “Call of Cthulhu,” the setting has also been adapted for other role-playing systems.

Deities & Demigods, TSR (May 1980)
TSR published this “cyclopedia” for Advanced Dungeons & Dragons, similar in format to their Monster Manual. The “Cthulhu Mythos” chapter includes statistics for Cthulhu, Azathoth, Byakhee, Cthuga (sic), Cthuga’s Flame Creature, Deep Ones, Great Race, Hastur the Unspeakable, Ithaqua, Mi-Go, Nyarlathotep, Primordial One (Elder Thing), Shoggoth, Shub-Niggurath, Yog-Sothoth, The Elder Sign, and The Necronomicon. Because Chaosium had acquired the gaming rights to Lovecraft’s works, TSR was required to remove this chapter from their second edition. More information about this is available in the rec.games.frp.dnd FAQ.
Call of Cthulhu, Chaosium (1981)
When it began, “Call of Cthulhu” was primarily the creation of Sandy Petersen. Since then, it has advanced to a fifth edition, won numerous awards, been translated into half a dozen languages, and Petersen has moved on to other projects such as “Doom” and “Quake.” “Call of Cthulhu” is widely played and appreciated, and is considered one of the finest role-playing games ever created. Cthulhu Live (Fantasy Flight Games) gives players the means to participate in a live-action version of the game. Delta Green (Pagan Publishing) provides a modern conspiracy setting for the game.
The Gateway Bestiary, Chaosium (June 1980)
This collection of “Additional Monsters for Runequest” was created by Sandy Petersen. The “H.P. Lovecraft Creations” chapter includes statistics for Deep Ones, Great Race, Mi-Gos, Nightgaunts, Old Ones, Shoggoths, and Spawn of Yog-Sothoth. Petersen went on to create the above “Call of Cthulhu” role-playing game.
GURPS Cthulhupunk, Steve Jackson Games (1995)
Chris W. McCubbin’s GURPS worldbook combines the “Call of Cthulhu” environ with the cyberpunk genre. Since the book is designed for GURPS players who may not have the “Call of Cthulhu” rules, there’s a great deal of necessary overlap.
 
 
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