Call of Cthulhu scenarios

This article treats the subject of adapting scenarios from other games, especially Call of Cthulhu, for use with Delta Green.

The House on Stratford Lane (from TUO 3)

"Stratford Lane" is easy enough to convert to a modern setting and to DG players. The investigators are FBI agents. They can pursue a straight kidnapping investigation. Running this scenario, Shane Ivey threw in a small team of NRO Delta agents who were pursuing the same case from a different angle. This was before DG had been published, though, so he didn't have the role of Majestic 12 or their relationship with the Greys & Mi-Go fully fleshed out; with that extra background it might have been a lot tighter.

The Killer Out of Space (from Cthulhu Now)

"The Killer Out of Space" just screams to be played as Delta Green. Shane Ivey recommends that Drake and his boys be converted to a BLUE FLY team with Army support. Rob Shankley, playing it in 1994, had his players create FBI agents.

Love's Lonely Children (from The Stars Are Right)

"Love's Lonely Children" works well; it makes a great one-nighter with a terrific punch, and the seedy murder-and-drugs-and-mean-streets setting fits smoothly with law enforcement-oriented DG investigators. David Farnell called it "a very tight, well-thought-out piece which needs little modification". It has the modern sense of hopelessness and futility that runs through DG, similar to Chambers and Bierce rather than Lovecraft.

This Fire Shall Kill (from The Stars Are Right)

"This Fire Shall Kill" is another fun one-nighter. The opening "Oops, an investigator's house/cousin/parent/sister gets toasted by the Mythos" opening is a little tired and could easily be changed for DG.

The Professionals (from The Stars Are Right)

"The Professionals" reads better than it plays. Its plotline is linear, but the espionage, intrigue, political corruption, and terrorism make it a tailor-made DG op, complete with dangerous and shady rival federal agents to contend with. It would be pretty easy to work a Majestic vs. DG storyline into it, perhaps exploring a last-minute effort by Delta Green to keep Majestic from learning and researching the truth of the situation.

At Your Door

Pretty much all of "At Your Door" is immediately applicable to DG as well. Rob Shankly ran a shortened version based around chapters 2, 3 & 4 (Landscrapes, Dawn Biozyme, No Pain No Gain) with the missing information from chapter 1 supplied by friendlies who disappeared. The group were 100% casualties while still in the mountains, so they never got to Toronto. Shankly made a point of putting the PCs "under cover" to minimise the amount of help they could call on, so they were unknown to the local law and had to act "outside" it. The result was that the last two PCs escaped the hills and were killed by police when they went to confront Dr. Finley. Initially they did not realise the investigation was a DG operation. It was their first mission and they thought they had been summoned from distant parts of the country so that their cover would be safe, and were briefed to investigate and gather evidence.

The scenario does need protection from power-mad PCs who might try to call for law enforcement too early. Shankly's players were told that Dawn Biozyme is wealthy enough to be secure from search warrants (or equivalent) without extraordinary evidence of wrongdoing. Therefore they had to get ironclad proof before calling for help. Lastly, Shankly recommends reading Neil Stephenson's "Zodiac" beforehand, for a look at one version of the green movement.

David Farnell ran the same same campaign material. He dumped Landscrapes, which seemed irrelevant to the overall action, and got rid of other non-essentials to speed it up. He was planning a highly modified Toronto chapter (replacing the Serpent Guy with an old enemy from the PCs' first investigation instead of the "ridiculous and stupid" Rhan Tegoth. Farnell also sought to subvert the final Samson chapter into a nasty Carcosa-on-Earth deal, a foretaste of certain Emerald Hammer chapters.

At the time of writing, Farnell had yet to expand the idea of the child in the final chapter. Maybe there's more and more like him being born, and it'll have something big to do with the Endtimes stuff in Agent Timmin's site. Some on the DGML proposed making them essential to summoning Carcosa, and to somehow arrange things so that the only way to stop Carcosa from arriving would be to murder the innocent kids, forcing the players to choose. Andrew D Gable reported considering a version of this, taking the last chapter as a backdrop instead of a scenario. In his version, the kid in the final chapter would be important to the Tuchulcha cult and so cultists are trying to get a hold of him (not kill him, as in the scenario). However, the kid has loads of psychic potential, so Majestic-12's also trying to get a hold of him for cloning purposes, causing a Majestic-Tuchulcha schism.

A Resection of Time

Davide Mana reports that adapting this scenario to DG is possible, but you'll have to modify something along the way:

  • As the whole thing starts with a strange car accident and an irregular paper-handling on the part of the hospital staff, this is perfect to bring in law enforcement type PCs (future DG agents?). FBI, CDCP (disease control policies have been infringed by cremating Kyle so soon?), DEA (he was coming from a place "near Colombia") etc. On the other hand, the final shock comes only if the players have been part of the original expedition and all that. So you might end up handling two set of characters: the "proper" investigators and the friends of Kyle Wodson working for Schwartz. Fine but tricky. The alternative is playing by the book, and using civilian PCs.
  • Using law-enforcement connected characters might give a few problems when it comes to data collecting, requisitions and witness interviews: flash a badge and a lot of things will be smoother. On the other hand, if they are on a legit investigation, they'll have to stick to the procedure.
  • A lot of handouts should be remade, removing blatant mentions of Great Old Ones and such, making the thing more subtle. As this is gonna be a DG game, replace Mi-Go with Greys. This part is not difficult but requires a lot of work if you want to preserve the high quality of the original handouts.
  • The trip to Arkham is the worst part when it comes to subtlety: you'll have to set the scene in another town and university (easy) and find a way to pass the same informations without actually mentioning the old tomes, or the Mythos connection will be too evident. A good idea would be the introduction of a "friendly" character that collects the data (from a restricted section of the Miskatonic University Library?) and then relates them in person during a meeting in the characters' hotel room. This at least will make the subsequent Brotherhood of the Yellow Sign attack in the hotel more dramatic and focused, and not simply a heavy-handed case of harassment (as it is in the printed scenario).
  • Generally, through the whole adventure I do not feel at ease at all with the BOYS activities, as they are too much of a plot device in some moments. They should probably be fleshed out a bit.

Links

copy.png Material relevant to this article has been archived by the Fairfield Project at Call of Cthulhu scenarios discussion.
copy.png Material relevant to this article has been archived by the Fairfield Project at At Your Door discussion.

External links

Delta Green Scenario Guide by Jacob Busby

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