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Thorsteinn Mar

Thorsteinn Mar

Mar 5, 2024  ·  4 min read

About Call of Cthulhu

Call of Cthulhu



The Call of Cthulhu 7th edition tabletop roleplaying game
Version: 7th
Designer: Sandy Petersen, Lynn Willis, Mike Mason, Paul Fricker
Publisher: Chaosium
The ship is sinking, and the crew hurries you toward one of the many small rowboats acting as the ship’s lifeboats. As they load you in, they tell you your best bet is to aim for Beacon Island—they doubt you’ll make the mainland as a storm is brewing.
You should have just enough time to reach the island before the storm hits.

What do you do?

Play Call of Cthulhu tonight

The Starter Set of Call of Cthulhu is a great start since it includes not only a short version of the ruleset but also has excellent modules, one for a group and one for solo playing, where you can learn the game's rules.

We recommend starting with the Lightless Beacon or The Haunting, both available for free on Quest Portal.

The Mechanics

Call of Cthulhu uses a modified version of the BRP system, developed by Chaosium, and is a Set Difficulty system. It uses a d100, and players must roll under their skill number to succeed on a check.

Call of Cthulhu Character Sheet

For a great digital experience, go with the Call of Cthulhu Character Sheets on the web, iOS, and Android here on Quest Portal.

You can also download Call of Cthulhu PDF Character Sheets from Chaosium's website and print them for your table.

Core Rulebooks

Chaosium and Quest Portal have partnered on a great digital experience for the core Call of Cthulhu rulebooks. With the Chaosium Core subscription, you can access all the rules and lore you need to play with your group for years.

You can buy beautiful hardcovers from Chaosium's website or your local game store.


Read a comprehensive article about the history of Call of Cthulhu here.

The Call of Cthulhu Setting

Call of Cthulhu is deeply rooted in the themes and entities of H.P. Lovecraft's fiction. This includes a pantheon of ancient, incomprehensibly powerful cosmic entities such as Cthulhu, Nyarlathotep, and Azathoth. These beings exist beyond human understanding and are indifferent or hostile to humanity.

The classic setting for Call of Cthulhu is the 1920s, often called the "Roaring Twenties." This era's mix of post-World War I optimism, burgeoning technology, and social change provides a rich backdrop for tales of horror and mystery. However, the game can be adapted to other time periods as well.

The game's adventures can span the globe, taking players from the bustling streets of New York City to the remote corners of the Egyptian deserts, or they can be localized in small, claustrophobic settings like a secluded New England town.

A key element of Call of Cthulhu is the psychological impact of encountering the otherworldly and the unknown. Characters are at risk of physical harm and losing their sanity upon encountering eldritch horrors or forbidden knowledge.

The game often revolves around investigation, with players taking on the roles of detectives, scholars, journalists, and other archetypes who are drawn into mysterious and supernatural occurrences. Uncovering clues, deciphering ancient texts, and solving puzzles are common elements.

Characters in Call of Cthulhu are typically ordinary humans who are far more vulnerable than typical heroes of fantasy RPGs. The emphasis is on their fragility in the face of the incomprehensible and unknown, making survival and sanity preservation key aspects of gameplay.

The game is supported by an extensive lore based on Lovecraft's stories and expanded by subsequent authors. This includes detailed descriptions of ancient gods, alien races, forbidden books, and mysterious cults.

Call of Cthulhu emphasizes atmosphere, mood, and storytelling. The horror is often psychological and creeping, built through suspense, foreboding, and the gradual revelation of the horrific.

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