Arkham News Round-up: July, 2019
Hey everybody how's it going it's me Nate, Lost in time and space back with another monthly Arkham News Round-up. In this series, I go over news and product releases for Cthulhu mythos games over the previous month and quickly share my thoughts with you. Without further ado, let's hop right into this month's news.
Most companies spent the month preparing for Gen Con, and Chaosium was no exception. However, Gen Con is just one of the several gaming conventions happening around the globe this month. In honor of NecronomiCon 2019, Chaosium will be unveiling a new scenario set, “The Shadow Over Providence.” Set in the Milton hotel, a call back to the real life Biltmore Hotel in Providence, this adventure was written by Jon Hook of the Miskatonic University Podcast and features artwork and maps by Matt Ryan. The blog post made on Chaosium's website gives us the basic plot hook for this adventure by saying quote:
August 25th, 1928: Providence, Rhode Island.
The Milton Hotel cordially invites you to view the fantastical traveling exhibition “The Kingdom of Fire—Egypt’s 18th Dynasty.” All the way from the British Museum, London, England, come see these wonders of ancient Egypt, rare and priceless items from a time long ago. Learn about their history from Dr. Caitlin Bronson, the exhibition’s curator, who will be on hand to answer all of your questions. Marvel at the treasures of Tutankhamun and Hatshepsut, along with the star of the exhibition, the mysterious canopic jar of Ibnhotep the Mad! Tickets are limited and going fast—and you don’t want to miss out on what promises to be the most talked about exhibition of the year!”
This adventure sounds great for new or experienced Keepers alike. The PC's don't necessarily have to be familiar with one another at the start of this adventure, which makes it a good starting point for a campaign into Mythos. Conversely for veteran Keepers, this plot hook is fairly easy to work into an existing campaign. Changing the time era and/or location can be done with minimal effort. Printed copies of this will be available in limited quantities at Necronomicon this year with PDF versions available afterwards. If you happen to be going to Necronomicon, I'll also be in attendance, demoing the Arkham LCG Friday and Saturday. Come find me and say hi! Speaking of the Arkham LCG...
FFG announced a new Standalone scenario pack for the Arkham LCG titled “Murder at the Excelsior Hotel”. This scenario was designed by Matt Newman (of course) and Nicholas Kory of the Mythos Busters Podcast. It's very cool to see game developers do stuff like this with their communities. Matt and Nicholas also were also in a promo video for this scenario which you can check out here. This scenario sees the investigators looking into the strange events that have been reported to be have occurred at the Excelsior Hotel for some time. following up on a note they receive, the investigators arrange a meeting at the Hotel hoping for answers. The investigators wake up in the room sometime later to the horrific sight of a dead man, lying bleeding on the floor. Having no idea what happened the investigators are left with a choice, Do they try to cover it up in order to protect themselves, or do they search for clues as to what really happened?
The article on FFG's website reveals a couple of the new mechanics introduced in this scenario pack, along with spoiling a couple of the encounter cards. In order for the investigators to advance the act deck, they must control 2 lead assets. These are obtained by spending clues and an action to draw from the “leads” deck. This feels like a cool twist on the explore mechanic from The Forgotten Age. As for the encounter cards While Driven to madness seems like your typical affair of encounter cards, Hotel Guest is our first sampling of the new keyword, Patrol. Enemies with Patrol that are unengaged and ready during the enemy phase, move to a connecting location along the shortest path to the location designated on their card. This is similar to the Hunter keyword, but rather than closing in on an investigator, it moves to a targeted location. Another detail shared about this scenario is that there are a whopping 10 different versions of the final act! Damn. I've enjoyed the previous standalone adventures for the Arkham LCG and this one peaks my interests. Pre-ordering this on FFG's site will net you some Art prints, as well as free shipping to the continental US. Murder at the excelsior Hotel is expected to hit retailers Q3 of this year.
Originally announced back in late April of this year, FFG shared some more info into the upcoming “Return to the Path to Carcosa”. I've already written an article going into detail about this subject if you’re interested. In summary, this most recent article spoils some new encounter cards, shares some details into changes made to the Unspeakable Oath , and goes over some of the achievements and Ultimatums introduced in this box set. This product is also expected to hit store shelves Q3 of this year...whatever that means.
On their livestream the day before Gen Con, FFG revealed a new board game to the Arkham Files line. To quote FFG's article here:
Arkham Horror: Final Hour offers your investigators a fast-paced, fully cooperative Arkham Horror gaming experience that can be played in under 60 minutes. As an endless tide of monsters sweeps across the Miskatonic University campus, you must hold them back while searching desperately for the ritual components you need to put an end to the insanity. Your fate depends on the cooperation between you and your fellow investigators. The odds against you are astronomical, but if you fail, this will indeed be the final hour for Arkham… and the world.
Final Hour has the investigators running around the Miskatonic University campus, gathering up clues, beating up deep ones and soggoths in the hopes of reversing a cult's ritual and banish the Ancient One from the world. Players have only 8 turns to hopefully end the madness with turns operating akin to other Arkham Files games. The players take their actions recovering ritual components or fighting baddies, then the Mythos enacts it's horrors on the world and summons monsters to slow the investigators down. The article on FFG's site makes a point to say that Final Hour is more focused on combat than most Arkham Files games. The Characters previewed further reinforce this with investigators such as Jenny Barnes, a dual pistol wielding dilletante, Michael McGlenn a mobster with a chicago typewriter, and Lily Chen, renowned martial artist.
The article goes into further detail into the mechanics of the game, which I'll go over in a future video, but sufficed to say, I'm looking forward to an Arkham Files game that my play group and I can enjoy and still have time for another game. FFG has scheduled a Livestream for the game's developers to play and showcase the game. There's also a stream scheduled for the Dead of Night Arkham Horror 3rd edition expansion later in the month. Arkham Horror: Final Horror is expected to be released Q4 of 2019, probably in time for the holidays.
While not totally related to gaming, I did quickly want to share a post on Pelgrane Press' Website. Robin D Laws, shared some Carcosa themed drink recipes! As a chef, This has me inspired to write my own recipes for Mythos inspired dishes. If you'd be interested in something like that be sure to let me know down in the comments below.
Announced via Twitter. “Gateways to Terror” three evenings of nightmare: is a collection of scenarios intended to each be playable in a single game session. I couldn't find much more info about this product but Chaosium did reveal the cover art which looks great! I was a big fan of the Doors to Darkness collection released a while back and I'm curious to learn more about the adventures featured in this collection.
Rounding off this month's news. Critical Role played a Call of Cthulhu one-shot. Set in 1890's London Shadow of the Crystal Palace, is a special scenario developed by Chaosium for Critical Role. The investigators are hired by Rupert Merriweather, a name long time CoC fans are sure to recognize, to break into crystal palace and retrieve an ancient casket for him. As always the production value is excellent and there is some great stand out moments during the game that I won't spoil for you but it's definitely worth a watch. It would be cool if Chaosium eventually released this scenario for us plebs to enjoy but only time will tell.
That's gonna do it for this month's Arkham News Round-up. What did you think of this month's news? Are you excited for another Arkham Files game? Was there any news that I missed? Be sure to leave your thoughts down in the comments below.