Thursday, April 05, 2018
The Lovecraftian Thing a Day (2018) No.95: Horror on the Orient Express
Horror on the Orient Express - the glorious, Continental Europe-spanning campaign for Call of Cthulhu - had been on many players’ ‘want’ lists subsequent to its going out of print at some point in the early-to-mid 1990s; then, with the 7th edition of the game on the horizon, Chaosium launched a Kickstarter campaign for the purposes of publishing a new, revised 7th ed-compatible version of HotOE. Without going into details, this instigated a series of events leading to the almost-collapse - then subsequent (and surprising) revival - of Chaosium. The new edition of HotOE (shown above) is certainly a product of that troubled and tempestuous moment.
Whilst the new edition of HotOE comes in beautiful heavy cardboard boxing - which contains a plethora of high quality, well-produced maps and handouts - the scenario books which constitute the core of the campaign lack the same care as those subsidiary materials, appearing very bland and almost unfinished by comparison. That said, HotOE remains notable for containing the only scenario I am aware of based upon (or more accurately ‘inspired by’) the work of Thomas Ligotti. Whilst available for the first time in pdf format, this edition of HotOE has now, I believe, also sold out - and it is uncertain if we will see it in print again anytime soon...