Ph’nglui mglw’nafh Cthulhu R’lyeh wgah’nagl fhtagn
H.P. LOVECRAFT may have done most of his writing almost 100 years ago, but he casts a long shadow over contemporary arts. While cosmic dread, non-Euclidean geometry, and sudden bouts of insanity don’t always translate well to movies, they’re perfect for games.
This particular stab at unknowable horror is based on the 1981 paper RPG of the same name, and sees grizzled private investigator Edward, suffering from PTSD following wartime experiences, look into a strange fire and disappearances on an island off the coast of Massachusetts. The era sees prohibition and the end of the whaling industry, so an isolated town full of men with too much time on their hands has found a new outlet for its baser urges.
As a study in foreboding atmosphere, Call of Cthulhu hits all the right unsettling notes. Faces are craggy, all deep-set eyes and filthy scars, and a strong maritime theme gives an excuse for the beams of a lighthouse to rhythmically pierce the misty gloom.
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