Monday, January 22, 2018

The Lovecraftian Thing a Day (2018) No.22: Off The Ancient Track




Additional to his wonderful map of Providence - and in celebration of the return of NecronomiCon -in 2013 Jason Eckhardt also produced a revised edition of his Off The Ancient Track, a beautifully-illustrated guide to Lovecraftian locales in Providence, New York, and New England more generally. I’m surprised that this didn’t get a mention in the 2016 edition of the Lovecraftian Thing a Day. Although I managed to pick up a second copy at NecronomiCon 2017, sadly this no longer appears to be readily available.

Sunday, January 21, 2018

The Lovecraftian Thing a Day (2018) No.21: Lovecraft’s Providence


Part of my NecronomiCon 2015 haul, Jason Eckhardt’s map of Lovecraft’s Providence is a thing of monstrous beauty - and I can’t believe that I haven’t yet had it framed and hung on my wall (indeed, I’m surprised I didn’t include this as part of 2016’s Lovecraftian Thing a Day). Truly gorgeous.

You can purchase a copy from Lovecraft Arts and Sciences located, appropriately enough, in Providence, RI.

Saturday, January 20, 2018

The Lovecraftian Thing a Day (2018) No.20: What Rough Beast Slouches Towards Innsmouth To Be Born?



The bag I received yesterday from Miskatonic University contained this curious specimen, labelled as an ‘unknown fetus’ and apparently hailing from the notorious Devil’s Reef off the Massachusetts coast. The label (which also bears the mark of Miskatonic University) dates the recovery of the specimen to 1928 - the same year of the infamous federal raid on the legend-haunted coastal town of  Innsmouth (which overlooks the Reef).

The test tube in which the specimen floats is attached to some kind of arcane incubation device, which emits a strange yellow glow. I’m almost certain I saw the thing twitch or move a few minutes ago.

Whatever its provenance, the mystery remains as to who sent this anomalous specimen and why...

Friday, January 19, 2018

The Lovecaftian Thing a Day (2018) No.19: What’s in the Bag?


This arrived in the post today, forwarded anonymously from Miskatonic University (Arkham, Mass.).

I do wonder: what’s in the bag?

Perhaps tomorrow we will find out.

Thursday, January 18, 2018

The Lovecraftian Thing a Day (2018) No.18: The Way It Went Down


The second of this year’s digital entries, which just dropped on Amazon and rpgnow: Delta Green - The Way It Went Down: a collection of Cthulhu mythos microfictions by Dennis Detwiller. This is going for a song (I picked it up for a couple of quid), and the stories I have read so far (about half) are redolent with the strange, oblique and unnerving mood of its parent setting - an ideal taster for those seeking an entry point into the wider world of Delta Green.

The Lovecraftian Thing a Day (2018) No.17: Seeking the Darkest Gods


I haven’t made it common knowledge that, since September 2017, I’ve gone from being a part-time lecturer to full-time status; whilst overall this is a very good thing, the intersection of new roles and responsibilities which come with this has, over the last couple of weeks, been a tad stressful! Thus it is time to unwind by way of memories of times past: namely drinking coffee with Joe and Kimberlie Broers at their suite in the Providence Biltmore on the first day of NecronomiCon in August 2017.

On that occasion, Joe - an incredibly talented scultor of things Lovecraftian and macabre - was kind enough to gift me a copy of Seeking the Darkest Gods: a wonderfully chilling collection of Lovecraftian tales, vignettes and art, scripted by Joe, with visuals provided by Eddie Wilson, and available here.

Thank you Joe - and sorry again I wasn’t able to make dinner with Kimberlie and yourself before the end of the Con (I mean to rectify that when we meet again in 2019!).

Tuesday, January 16, 2018

The Lovecraftian Thing a Day (2018) No.16: Delta Green - Handler’s Guide:


In today’s post we revisit an old favourite - but in a new guise: the Delta Green rpg (also our first digital Thing a Day in 2018).

Initially a campaign setting for the Call of Cthulhu rpg, Delta Green has now been published as its own rpg system; whilst it is one in which I have not yet played, I nonetheless consider Delta Green to be the finest rpg setting of all time.

The X-Files meets the Cthulhu mythos’ is the elevator pitch often used to describe Delta Green; this, however, fails to do justice to the rich and deeply-researched background, as well as the outstanding writing which informs the setting: even for a digital product, this reeks of stale despair and unreconstructed Cold War nihilism - it is perhaps the most uncompromisingly bleak iteration of the Cthulhu mythos, catching players between the unthinkable indifference of Lovecraft’s cosmic monstrosities on the one hand, and the equally uncaring predations of government bureaucracy and neo-liberal corporatism on the other.

The Delta Green: Handler’s Guide is the GMs sourcebook for the various conspiracies which make up the Delta Green milieu, detailing their secret histories and hidden agendas from the 1920s to the post-9/11 world. Even if you are not into gaming, this still deserves to be on the (digital) bookshelf of the dedicated Lovecraftian, being the ideal primer and companion piece to the range of Delta Green fiction available from Arc Dream Publishing - all of which is uniformly excellent, containing some of the best modern Cthulhu mythos fiction currently available in an increasingly oversaturated market.

The Delta Green: Handler’s Guide - you need to buy it.

Do it! Do it now!


Monday, January 15, 2018

The Lovecaftian Thing a Day (2018) No.15: Wax Cylinder


Paul Mclean, librarian and overseer of the Miskatonic Library’s Special Collection, recently sent me this curious wax cylinder. Apparently it contains a recording pertinent to a series of strange events which occured in the wilds of Vermont in 1930; the item is labelled as belonging to Henry Akeley, who disappeared under mysterious circumstances during the culmination of said events - events which, curiously, also occured around the time when the (dwarf-) planet of Pluto was first discovered.