Saturday, August 20, 2011

TinTin in The Dreamlands

A Call of Cthulhu RPG- Tintin crossover idea.

Put a twist in your gaming ideas and imagine if TinTin was to end up in the Dreamlands of H.P. Lovecraft with Capt Haddock and Snowy, his wisecracking dog.  The Dreamlands can be entered via dreams or physically by going down a certain staircase in a ruined city.  Both are fraught with great danger, both mental and physical.  Both you and your dream state self can be killed if you make a mistake or a misjudgment. 

TinTin in the DreamlandsThe Dreamlands can vary wildly from near normal to the utterly fantastic.  Generally people forget the Dreamlands when they wake from their dream, but those few, I dare not call them lucky, remember it all.  A very clever gamemaster might be able to blend a regular Call of Cthulhu RPG game and a Dreamlands scenario, but it takes a fine sense of judgment and a good deal experience. 
I recommend running this scenario either in the 1920s or in the early 1950s although the Victorian Era would not be impossible.  The setup might be:  a colleague of the professor (one of your party or a friend of one of your party) disappears leaving behind a locked room with a lot of odd electronic devices.  Upon reading the documents in a locked cabinet they find out that the doctor had originally been experimenting with sleep therapy.  Over several years, he found that a rare drug coupled with his invention would place a person in a state very far beyond regular REM sleep.  Boxes of radio electroencephalogram printouts show a huge amount of brain activity in subjects when in this state.  His records become quite erratic in the last few months and he hints at a great discovery.  Another box contains a peculiar bronze dagger and some coins that the origin or language cannot be identified, although the metal is electrum, which hadn’t been used in coinage in over 2,000 years.  There is also a common small cay pot that is empty, a few pebbles, and a feather that cannot be identified.  A pile of other papers have number of landscape drawings show quaint towns, strange ruined cities, and nightmare creatures.  Some of the sketches seem to be from patients and others might be the doctor’s works.

Mind you, I would have a couple of alternate possibilities:  (1) it is the dreamlands and you have to rescue the doctor, (2) the rare medications actually just made you crazy and the doctor is crazy himself, he disappeared on his own, (3) nefarious criminals, quasi-government or religious zealots want the equipment for themselves and they did away with the doctor or he has fled to the dreamlands to escape, (4) the doctor is a dangerous quack who is trying to get back at the professor for trying to find out what is going on, the upshot being that this is an attempt to kill or disable the group.  You take it from there, the point is to instill curiosity, and fear in the group, both of the real and of the imagined.  Keep them on their guard and not ever sure that this is a legit case of Cthonianism.

For more crossover fun see my post Call of Cthulhu RPG – Minions, Cultists, and Scooby-Doo, posted Friday April 29, 2011.

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