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Monday, 29 July 2019

Miskatonic Monday #22: The Wernicke Boxes

Between October 2003 and October 2013, Chaosium, Inc. published a series of books for Call of Cthulhu under the Miskatonic University Library Association brand. Whether a sourcebook, scenario, anthology, or campaign, each was a showcase for their authors—amateur rather than professional, but fans of Call of Cthulhu nonetheless—to put forward their ideas and share with others. The programme was notable for having launched the writing careers of several authors, but for every Cthulhu Invictus, The Pastores, Primal State, Ripples from Carcosa, and Halloween Horror, there was a Five Go Mad in Egypt, Return of the Ripper, Rise of the Dead, Rise of the Dead II: The Raid, and more...

The Miskatonic University Library Association brand is no more, alas, but what we have in its stead is the Miskatonic Repository, based on the same format as the DM’s Guild for Dungeons & Dragons. It is thus, “...a new way for creators to publish and distribute their own original Call of Cthulhu content including scenarios, settings, spells and more…” To support the endeavours of their creators, Chaosium has provided templates and art packs, both free to use, so that the resulting releases can look and feel as professional as possible. To support the efforts of these contributors, Miskatonic Monday is an occasional series of reviews which will in turn examine an item drawn from the depths of the Miskatonic Depository.


Name: The Wernicke Boxes

Publisher: Chaosium, Inc.
Author: Rob Leigh

Setting: Modern Day
Product: Scenario
What You Get: 5.35 MB, 24-page full colour PDF
Elevator Pitch: A locked box, locked room mystery across Europe.

Plot Hook: A friend’s ‘suicide’ behind a locked door leads to a multiple MacGuffin hunt to save lives.
Plot Development: Multiple boxes, multiple museums, multiple visions, and rival sorcerers.
Plot Support: Solid plot, three maps, six handouts, one new spell.
Production Values: Decent beyond a slight edit.

# Good MacGuffin hunt
# Good conspiracy scenario
# Excellent floor plans
# Decent handouts
# Easy to add to a modern campaign
# Easy to adjust to earlier time periods

# Detective needs anglicising
# No Hound of Tindalos
# No House of Ausberg

# Solid conspiracy horror scenario
# Lamentable inspirations

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