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Monday, 2 September 2019

Miskatonic Monday #26: Shepherd of Moths

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 InvictusThe PastoresPrimal StateRipples from Carcosa, and Halloween Horror, there was a Five Go Mad in EgyptReturn of the RipperRise of the DeadRise 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: Shepherd of Moths

Publisher: Chaosium, Inc.
Author: Marek Golonka

Setting: Any, any university town
Product: Scenario
What You Get: 26.62 MB, 15-page full colour PDF
Elevator Pitch: Can the price of knowledge be too high?

Plot Hook: Scholarly ambitions and disagreements unleash a Mythos mentor on a university town.
Plot Development: Missing persons, cancelled lectures, and visions and visions and visions and visions.
Plot Support: Multiple hooks, a new Mythos entity, visions, and long term consequences!

# First release in English release in the Zgrozy line
# Detailed plot outline rather than a scenario
# Easy to adapt to any university town

# Easy to adapt to any time period 
# Potential for long term consequences for the investigators
# Interesting new Mythos entity

# European feel, but no specifics
# Potential sequel to Spark of Life?
# Decent art

# Needs an edit
# Detailed plot outline rather than a scenario
# Could be slightly better organised
# European feel, but no specifics
# Works best with some prior set-up

# Solid start to the Zgrozy line
# Flexible, but works best with prior set-up.
# Visions aplenty for the Keeper to inflict on her investigators.

1 comment:

  1. Thank you very much for the review! You encapsulated that Shepherd is about very well and I'm very happy that you find it a solid start for Zgrozy :)

    I also found it nice how you've put "Detailed plot outline rather than a scenario" and "European feel, but no specifics" both in pros and cons :) I like to write scenarios in a more general way, allowing the players to generate their own story rather than creating any preset events but I know not everybody likes this approach. As for the "European feel" I wanted to make Shepherd an easy fit for any campaign and I'm a bit fed up with the total dominance of English-language names and locations in RPGs. Hence an ecclectic mix of English, French and German names that can be easily used in any big city or replaced with whatever names are appropiate for the setting.