Monday, April 4, 2011

Call of Cthulhu is the worst story I've ever read

Not only is it a C, but it's also an alliteration. Fortuitous as it seems like a lot of my favorite roleplaying games went this route: Dungeons & Dragons, Tunnels & Trolls, Labyrinth Lord, Castles & Crusades, Creeks & Crawdads...you know what, fuck it, let's discuss Creeks & Crawdads. I'm sure there are a million blog posts about the proto-typical Lovecraftian story, so I'll focus on something no one ever talks about. And, yes, that title is just to draw attention because CoC is a great story.

So, basically this game is about semi-anthropomorphic crawdads living in a post-apocalyptic world. And that's the third hyphenated term I've used in not more than 100 words total...awesome. Crawdads are pretty stupid, so the entire game revolves around being as dense and incorrigible as possible. Any sort of action that results in doing something useful requires an IQ roll (of sorts). The chance of success is pretty low, which means nothing really gets done in the game. I mean, they're fucking crawdads, what kind of adventures could they possibly have? I've ran this game exactly once with five drunken friends and it was essentially several hours of crawdads getting killed in ridiculous ways when they tried to do the most mundane tasks. If it were a D&D session, the characters would probably never make it past buying equipment because they'd be too fascinated by the shiny armor. The fun part of the game is coming up with creative ways of infuriating the other players. Most games assume the PCs are somewhat competent, some games assume they're hyper-competent (four!), but this game assumes the PCs are insanely stupid and the players really embrace the concept in an extremely short amount of time. When we played, it was after a fairly lengthy and high-powered (should I go for six?) campaign had come to a close. I was burnt out, and most of the players said they were done with rpgs for a while. A night of Creeks & Crawdads and two cases of beer later, we were ready to start up another serious D&D game. It is out-of-print (there we go), but highly recommended.

2 comments:

  1. Oh My God.

    Having this mentioned and discussed on a blog with the Best Name EvAr is ..... oh god. I have to weep with joy.

    Doc "king crawdad" Grognard.

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  2. Oh hell yeah...you gonna publish it again anytime soon?

    ReplyDelete