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Sunday, 18 April 2021

Miskatonic Monday #63: Full Fathom Five

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.



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Name: Full Fathom Five
Publisher: Chaosium, Inc.
Author: Paul Fricker

Setting: 1840s South Seas

Product: One-Shot Scenario
What You Get: Sixty page, 5.63 MB Full Colour PDF

Elevator Pitch: Moby Dick meets the Mythos (with Sea Shanties).
Plot Hook:  The lure of the sea runs deep.
Plot Support: Twenty-three pre-generated Investigator sheets, portraits for all NPCs and Investigators, staging advice for the Keeper, deck plans, glossary and location guide, five handouts, three Mythos NPCs/monsters.
Production Values: Clean and tidy, decent deck plans, good handouts, and clearly done pre-generated Investigators.

Pros
# Nautical one-night, Blood Brothers-style one-shot scenario

# Potential convention scenario
# Different historical setting
# Twenty-three pre-generated Investigators and/or NPCs
# Nasty series of deaths
# Challenging switch between Investigators, victims, and/or NPCs
# Challenging roleplaying of 
Investigators, victims, and/or NPCs
# Strongly plotted
# Natty nautical X-card
# Sea Shanties

Cons

# Twenty-three pre-generated Investigators and/or NPCs
# Involves whaling (animal cruelty)
# Challenging switch between Investigators, victims, and/or NPCs
# Heavily plotted
# All male cast
# Sea Shanties

Conclusion
# Different historical setting
# Challenging roleplaying of Investigators, victims, and/or NPCs
# Nasty nautical one-shot
# Sea Shanties

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