Cthulhu Dark Ages is a world lit only by fire. The ancient empires collapsed centuries ago, taking their culture and learning with them. It’s a dark world and people are right to be afraid of the dark. Apart from the Viking raiders, witches, and outlaws, there are the unquiet dead, ancient horrors, and other malevolent beings stalking the countryside. Dark entities, beyond good and evil, wait hidden in the recesses of time and the angles of space. A few brave souls try their best to resist the horrors and push them back from whence they came.
Will you be one of them?
Chaosium Unveiled: Inside Cthulhu Dark Ages
With the 3rd Edition, Cthulhu Dark Ages has been updated for Call of Cthulhu 7th Edition, completely revised and includes a wealth of new setting material. Inside you will find a player’s guide to the Dark Ages, an optional Sanity mechanic for mirroring the medieval mindset, rules for the oral tradition of storytelling and mounted combat, a grimoire of Dark Age spells plus optional rules for Folk Magic, a bestiary of monsters, as well as a fully detailed setting—the Anglo-Saxon community of Totburh in England’s Severn Valley, full of interesting characters, dwelling descriptions, and a multitude of plot hooks for Keepers to use and develop.
This new 3rd edition comes in hardback and full color, with additional material concerning poetry and kennings, the written word, using the Oral Tradition in games, amulets, further use of Sanity in the setting, Paganism, and Norse Paganism.
- Introduction and Foreword
- Anglo-Saxon England
- A to Z of the Dark Ages
- Dark Age Investigators
- Game System
- Investigative Horror in the Dark Ages
- The Cthulhu Mythos in the Dark Ages
- The Community of Totburh
Three ready-to-play scenarios introduce players to the world of Cthulhu Dark Ages, building on the tensions, characters, and horrors lurking in Toburh and the lands surrounding the community.
- The Hunt—wherein a terrifying wolf is troubling the community of Totburh and must be dealt with. This short adventure provides the perfect introduction to the Dark Ages setting.
- The Doom That Came to Wessex—all is not well at the Monastery of S. Swithun, with an attack leaving some of the monks dead or injured. Something foul is afoot threatening the very sanctity of the monastery.
- Eseweald—Oswyn, the thegn of Totburh, is concerned about the disappearance of his son, sent on a diplomatic mission to calm tension with a neighboring community, who seems to have vanished without a trace in the dark foreboding Eseweald forest
The book is rounded out with comprehensive appendices containing a Dark Ages Glossary of historical terms, a Timeline covering 950–1054 CE, a Who’s Who of notable historical people, kings, and popes, and a bibliography of texts and sources of inspiration.
Throughout, advice and guidance on running adventures and presenting the world of the Dark Ages is provided.
With nothing but candle light and your wits, your journey into the Dark Ages begins...
This supplement is best used with the CALL OF CTHULHU (7th Edition) roleplaying game and optionally PULP CTHULHU, available separately.
Downloads for this Product
What The Critics Say
"Cthulhu Dark Ages is a brilliant addition to the line, a book anyone who loves the game needs on their shelf... It has everything the previous edition has and more... a major revision packed with all sorts of new material that the devious cultists operating the Chaosium know you will not be able to resist."
— Andrew Logan Montgomery, Exploring the Otherworlds of Fiction, Magic, and Gaming.
"A wonderful tool for spicing up your more conventional Lovecraftian games… Come for the chance to stab abominations with pointy sticks, stay for the loving guide to dark ages England."
— Tabletop Gaming (UK).
"An excellent starting point for what can be a vibrant and dangerous new world for Call of Cthulhu players to go nuts and die in... the entire supplement is a clear indication of the passion the writing team had for the enormity of the project, and deserve serious applause and congratulations for it."
"Cthulhu Dark Ages is, in my opinion, one of the best Call of Cthulhu books to come out, from any edition… After reading the book, I was filled with ideas for a Cthulhu Dark Ages campaign. It screamed “don’t just read me, play me” in a way that only the best gaming books do."
"The third iteration of Cthulhu Dark Ages is a hell of a book. It is vastly superior to its first edition, to the point that I wonder whether it was necessary to keep the same title. The research that has been put into it is outstanding, its focus is spot-on, while the interconnection between rules and theme is what every RPG should aspire to... Between Berlin - The Wicked City and this, Chaosium has simultaneously produced the best sourcebook and the best setting guide on the market irrespective of RPG."
— Antonios S. RPGNet review.
"A great fit for tables that still want a little sword and sorcery in their RPGs even if the swords can’t kill the monsters and the magic destroys the spellcasters."
Physical Product Settings
Is Physical Product: [Y]
Has Inventory: [Y]
United States: [Y]
United Kingdom: [Y]
Is PDF Available: [Y]
PDF Product Name: [Cthulhu Dark Ages - 3rd Edition - PDF]
PDF Product Link: [/cthulhu-dark-ages-3rd-edition-pdf/]
Has Physical Product: [Y]
Is Physical Available: [N]
Physical Product Name: [Cthulhu Dark Ages - 3rd Edition - Hardcover]
Physical Product Link: [/cthulhu-dark-ages-3rd-edition-hardcover/]
- Rule Set:
- Call of Cthulhu 7th Edition
- Year Released:
- Full Color Hardcover
- Page Count:
- Chad Bowser, Andi Newton, James Holloway, Mike Mason
- Cover Artist:
- Rob Gould
- Interior Art:
- Alberto Bontempi, Pat Loboyko, Caleb Cleveland, Sam Lamont
- Stephanie McAlea
- Art Direction & Layout:
- Nicholas Nacario
Focused setting content is my preference. This book is sometimes a bit strangely organized, notably the A-Z section should probably appear later in the book. Either way, this provides everything I could want for a ~10th century England setting guide and it's wrapped around the best version of CoC to date.
This latest edition differs quite a bit from its predecessor - you will be getting a reimagining rather than a simple update. Part of this reimagining is unfortunately a greater focus on England specifically. To be sure, this does come with a lot of detail and a well-realised samble setting, which abounds with plot hooks. But England has been well covered in many other excellent RPG products - if this book were to focus on one country, I would have preferred one that has seen less coverage. Which is not to say there isn't a lot of strong material. Perhaps the best being a reframing of the Sanity system to tie in with the importance of religious belief, in ways both helpful and detrimental to player characters, but always evocative of the time. If you don't share my preference for another country over England, you might fairly consider this a four rather than three star review.