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The Semester is over and Taylor U students' Call of Cthulhu scenario 'Refractions of Glasston' is now out!

Posted by Michael O'Brien on 12th Dec 2019

The Fall semester at Taylor University came to a close today, and Refractions of Glasston is now available to download at the Miskatonic Repository, Chaosium's Call of Cthulhu community content resource at DriveThruRPG. Prof T.R. Knight (Professional Writing Department, Taylor University) gives an update of the second half of the semester:

Refractions of Glasston

“Once the students completed their Final Drafts, they split into smaller teams to prepare the adventure for publication over the last month of the semester. Two students compiled all the Final Drafts and did an initial edit for content and formatting to the Style Guide. All the students did some initial proofreading at this time. Two students were focused on art direction earlier and continued to work with student artists on campus to provide original artwork for the adventure. One student prepared the Table of Contents, Index, and Page Number references. One student did the majority of the layout with assistance in key areas. And one student was the primary proofreader of the final document. Chaosium's Mike Mason and Lynne Hardy provided an editorial review of the final layout during the final week of the semester. 

The semester ended with a celebration and uploading of the final document to the Miskatonic Repository as their Final Exam. Marketing, especially on social media, commenced the moment the adventure was available for download.”

Refractions of Glasston is the result of a creative collaboration between the Professional Writing department at Taylor University, Upland IN and Chaosium Inc. The creators are all students at Taylor University. Though many of the team are members of the professional writing major, this is their first foray into the world of RPG writing. With help and advice provided by Chaosium's Mike Mason and Lynne Hardy, these writers, editors, and RPG enthusiasts set out to create a unique adventure for Call of Cthulhu fans to enjoy.

The Refractions of Glasston

Elias Taylor Winters, the CEO of TWJ Co., discovered a secret to the glass-making process that finally put him above his long-standing competition: Ball Glass. Shattering expectations for such a small company in rural Indiana, Winters has put Glasston on the map. The town and its economy are booming. But not everything in Glasston is as it should be…

Refractions of Glasston is a standalone scenario for Call of Cthulhu 7th Edition. It takes place in a rural town in northwest Indiana, set in the 1920s. Inside you’ll find:

  • A thrilling mystery surrounding the town of Glasston, fueled by intrigue and disturbing encounters.
  • Hooks for incorporating local cryptids or real-life occurrences into the scenario.
  • Multiple endings and ways to continue the adventure for investigation addicts.
  • A history of Indiana that will prepare Keepers for running a scenario in such an atypical setting.

Working through the entire RPG adventure design process from idea genesis to publication within one semester has been a whirlwind for the students and Professor Knight. They managed all aspects from research, writing, editing, art direction, layout, and proofreading. Each student brought their own unique gaming experiences to the course, finishing the course with a greater appreciation for the rpgs they enjoy so much.

Planning the adventure was fun. Writing the adventure was enlightening. Now, in the final stages of editing, layout, art, and proofing, the adventure has become a challenge. That’s not to say a challenge is a bad thing. It provides an excellent platform for collaboration, even more so than prior stages of the project. Perhaps the most challenging aspect of all is finding complete coherence within a story written by seven separate people. There are inconsistencies to fix, continuity errors to find, and story flow to manage. However, it’s all coming together nicely. We each have our assigned roles, and I’m confident that, when all is said and done, we will have a Call of Cthulhu adventure of which to be proud. – Elijah Oates

One thing I learned from this experience is that ideas that people are passionate about come alive. With seven of us brainstorming ideas for our little Glasston adventure, the room would flood with ideas until we had to dredge a lot out. The good ideas, we kept, and improved upon. It feels like that happened all throughout the process. We’re excited for how players will react to the adventure’s twists and turns (and especially the beaver scene). Now that we’re nearing the end, I am sad about losing this awesome class. But, looking at it glass-half-full, we’ll be able to take what we’ve learned and run with it. – Tucker White

The students wish to thank Chaosium's Mike Mason and Lynne Hardy for their dedication and transparency throughout the process. The collaboration with Chaoisum, Inc. made this course very unique and an amazing opportunity for the students. What did Mike and Lynne think about the experience?

Refractions of Glasston -students and Mike and Lynne and work

We believe the collaboration was success and a positive one for the company. For us, it helps us build potential future writers, editors, layout personnel, and artists, all of which we rely on as a games publisher. Secondly, the end result is a product that helps to promote both our game and one of our key sales channels, the Miskatonic Repository. We also enjoy working with bright and creative people, sharing our knowledge and helping to shape the creatives and production professionals of the future. – Mike Mason

This has been a very pleasant and enjoyable experience from my point of view. The students were obviously engaged and enthusiastic, which is always lovely to see. They asked sensible, relevant questions in order to improve their own and the group's understanding, and managed to produce a very professional product in a very limited space of time as a result. Very impressive, and I am honoured to have had the opportunity to help them do so. – Lynne Hardy

Updates about the progress of the course were posted throughout the semester:

Thanks so much for following along with this course and encouraging the collaborative creative process. We hope you will download the student designed adventure and provide feedback. Your feedback will help with future collaborations and hopefully more semesters of this class in the years to come. – Prof TR Knight.

Free Download: Refractions of Glasston