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Call of Cthulhu Investigator Handbook - Hardcover

3.50 LBS
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An Essential Book for Call of Cthulhu Players

“No swords. No wizards. Just regular humans, in way over their heads...” — Gizmodo

Will you stand against the horrors from beyond space and time?

Whether learned professor, nosy journalist, hobo, waitress or hard-hitting detective, investigators need all the help they can get - Let this book be your guide!

The Investigator Handbook is an essential player’s aid for the Call of Cthulhu roleplaying game.

Chaosium Unveiled: Inside The Investigator Handbook

Watch the unveiling video to see the book for yourself. Remember that you get the PDF when getting the physical copy.

The Investigator Handbook contains expanded rules for creating players characters, a wealth of over 100 occupations and skill descriptions, as well as guidance on getting the most from the game.

The book introduces a range of organizations for your investigator to belong to, detailed information about the classic 1920s setting, equipment and weapons for both the 1920s and modern day, and expert tips and advice for all budding and experienced players alike.

What’s Inside?

Call of Cthulhu players will love having the Investigator Handbook at their fingertips during play. The book enhances the player experience and speeds gameplay thanks to a wealth of quick-reference charts, player advice and setting information.

Creating Investigators

An Investigator with a camera

Full rules for creating unique characters for Call of Cthulhu which will be of benefit to players and Keepers alike. This includes a narrative explanation behind each of the core characteristics, a 1920s character name generator, and an in-depth example of character creation to guide you as you craft your very own investigator.

Enhanced Character Background Example


A Hobo peering in a window

The core component to any Call of Cthulhu character. The book contains over 60 occupations that will shape your investigator. Each occupation lists the mechanical benefits (and drawbacks!) as well as a brief explanation to inspire your character. You’ll also find optional rules for experienced investigators, which allows you to take on the role of a war veteran, organized crime affiliate, grizzled police officer, and more.

Antique Dealer - Occupation Example

The Roaring Twenties

The Wild Party - Movie Poster

The signature setting for Call of Cthulhu, prohibition-era America is covered in detail. The book includes information on key events during the period, modes of transport across the country, and investigator information like forensics and photography. Additionally, you’ll find extensive information on weapons of the 1920s, and tables with period-specific costs of goods and services.

Packer Twin Six - Prestige Car of the 20s

Advice For Players

Picture - A 20s well-dress woman in a thinking pose

A chapter on core advice for both roleplaying and Call of Cthulhu in general will benefit new and returning players. The chapter focuses on cooperation, separation of character knowledge and player knowledge, and setting your expectations. It also covers dealing with problems as they arise, learning not to rely on combat, setting goals for your character, and knowing when and how to appropriately use the mechanics of the game.

Throwing Dust - Sample Player Advice

Downloads for this Product

Character Sheets

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What The Critics Say

2017 ENnie winner - Investigator Guide for Best Cover Art

Investigator Handbook Reviews

  • "An indispensable purchase."

    — Antonios S., RPGNet Review.

  • "A must-have if you’re running a long term Call of Cthulhu game… Overall there is something for everyone in this book whether you are a game keeper or a player."

    — Geeks-a-go-go, Investigator Review.

  • "Call of Cthulhu is now the Pepsi of RPG franchises, alongside D&D’s Coke, and the game’s success is part of the revival of Lovecraft and Lovecraftian fiction."

    — Paul StJohn Mackintosh, Greydog Tales., The Legacy of Lovecraft.

  • Call of Cthulhu has been called “one of the best roleplaying games of all time”(Geek & Sundry But something that’s overlooked about this classic horror RPG… is that it’s also one of the most versatile and well-researched historical RPGs around... I mean honestly, you can now play CoC in more time periods than your average season of Dr Who.

    — Games Vs Play., 5 Reasons Why.

  • "The Investigator Handbook is jam packed with info designed to get players up and running in CoC without muss or fuss – 9/10"

    — The Gaming Gang, Investigator Handbook Review.

  • "…one of the most iconic tabletop roleplaying games of all time."

    —, 10 hugely influential figures you didn't know were Mormon.

  • "The ultimate horror RPG, Call of Cthulhu is a stone-cold classic of the tabletop."

    — Tabletop Gaming Magazine (UK)., Top 10 Roleplaying Games.

  • "It almost destroyed my life and career"

    — George RR Martin., (Game of Thrones).

  • "9 out of 10 - "Jam-packed with info designed to get players up and running in CoC without muss or fuss."

    — The Gaming Gang, Investigator Handbook Pagethrough.

  • "An excellent resource, especially for new players... It’s filled with evocative art, plenty of setting color, lots of useful advice and helpful hints, and generally handy material for a player in Call of Cthulhu."

    — Matthew J. Constantine, Tabletop RPG Review: Call of Cthulhu Investigator Handbook.

  • "The gateway for really immersing yourself in the game"t

    — RPG Imaginings, The Best Call of Cthulhu 7E Supplement For Immersing Yourself In The Game! .

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Rule Set:
7th Edition Call of Cthulhu
Year Released:
Page Count:
Full Color Hardcover
Keith Herber, Mike Mason, Paul Fricker
Cover Artist:
Sam Lamont
Interior Artists:
Jonathan Wyke, Paul Carrick, Francois Launet, Victor Leza, Charles Wong, Mike Perry, Mariusz Gandzel, Cyril van der Haegen, Linda Jones, Rachel Kahn, Grilla, Chris Huth, Robert Hack, John T. Snyder, Nathan Rosario, and Earl Geier
  • Full Star Full Star Full Star Full Star Full Star 5
    Very nice

    Posted by SCOTT CATONE on 9th Feb 2024

    Exactly as described, really helps with character building, definitely a needed supplement

  • Full Star Full Star Full Star Full Star Full Star 5
    Excellent for world-building enthusiasts

    Posted by Mike Geib on 26th May 2022

    The "player's guide" on its own is ridiculously worth it. Setting aside its use as a character generator, it lists quality lore and setting details to help you get in the mindframe of the setting.

  • Full Star Full Star Full Star Full Star Full Star 5

    Posted by Nick Ingham on 27th Jul 2020

    The question I've most often seen asked about Call of Cthulhu 7th Edition is whether this book is necessary to play the game. The answer is no - everything you need is in the Keeper's Rulebook. But what is in this book is well worth the price. Expanded character creation contains a detailed look at skills, and a positive cornucopia of occupations. There's advice on investigation, a selection of organisations for Investigators to belong to, and a guide to the Twenties era.

  • Full Star Full Star Full Star Full Star Full Star 5
    Not required, but strongly recommended.

    Posted by Codi on 9th Apr 2017

    This book isn't required to play Call of Cthulu but does help give a better idea of the amount of freedom the Call of Cthulul system has. It is a little hard understanding how the occupation system works from the Keeper Rulebook and can get chaotic when a bunch of people are making characters together. The Investigators Handbook's premade occupation skill sets make creation a lot easier and chapter 8 is a fun way to pull ideas for characters, motivations, and scenarios. There is a lot of information in this book that can be found in the Keepers Rulebook, most of it comes in handy when multiple people are going through rules on items, characteristics, or play rules.

  • Full Star Full Star Full Star Full Star Full Star 5

    Posted by Dave in NC on 27th Oct 2016

    Not only is this a top of the line hardcover book with heavy duty cover, beautiful color artwork, heavy pages and great binding, but they really took the time to ensure that it arrived in excellent condition. When I saw the packaging, I immediately lost 3 points of sanity! The book was double boxed, with spacers at the corners to reinforce the package in case it was dropped. I really appreciate the extra care that went into the packaging to make sure the books arrived in factory mint condition. The game contained in the book is phenomenal, of course. Easy to understand rules, lots of options to customize your game to make it as complex or as straight forward as you and your players want. It really captures the spirit of The Cthulhu Mythos. Lovecraft would be proud!