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Minireview: The Resurrected III: Out of the Vault (Call of Cthulhu)

Out of the Vault is a compilation of Call of Cthulhu scenarios from the pages of Pagan Publishing’s “Unspeakable Oath” magazine (issues of which can be hard to get hold of nowadays), with new layout and art. Possibly some tweaks / corrections also, not sure about that; I had read almost all of these previously from the magazines, but it’s been a while so can’t say about possible differences. In any case, it’s generally a very high-class compilation. There are 10 scenarios, mosty from the “classic” 1920s era, and most of them are pretty good. Some few are only so-so, and a few are truly excellent. Many are quite deadly, as is par for the course for Cthulhu one-shots.

Highlights for me were the bizarre and deadly “Within You Without You”, the cinematic “Blood on the Tracks”… and above all, the crazy and brilliant “In Media Res”. That last one is quite unusual for a CoC scenario and is close in theme and feel to the (also brilliant and unusual) Unknown Armies scenario “Jailbreak”. It throws the PCs (and players) into a very scary situation with no warning, and also wraps up before questions are answered. Creepy and very cool, and also very suitable for a short LARP session; in fact some people have apparently run it as such.

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