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Monday, 12 October 2020

Miskatonic Monday #54: Cages of Light & Lenses - A Call of Cthulhu adventure of lost film

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 Repository.


Name: Cages of Light & Lenses - A Call of Cthulhu adventure of lost film

Publisher: Chaosium, Inc.
Author: Alison Cybe

Setting: 1980s New York glamour & Soviet-era Bulgaria grime

Product: Scenario
What You Get: Twenty-seven page, 1.18 MB Full Colour PDF

Elevator Pitch: Sometimes lost media should stay lost.
Plot Hook: 
 A collector wants the only copy of a once-thought lost Silent Era film; guess who he hires to get it? 
Plot Support: One creature, four Mythos entities, two maps, and five pre-generated Investigators.
Production Values: Tidy layout, plain maps, and decent illustrations, but needs an edit.

# Engaging introduction and theme

# Potential convention scenario
# Solid climax
# Room for development
# Scope to play up the Capitalist/Communist culture clash


# Needs an edit
# No stats for the lost film as a tome
# Antagonists underutilised
# Missed opportunity for Capitalist/Communist culture clash 
# Missed opportunity for Committee for State Security involvement
# How does the bear get out of the basement?

# Engaging introduction and theme
Underdeveloped, but plenty of Cold War-horror potential 
The King in Yellow, but in reverse?

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