Review: Arc Dream Publishing – The Unspeakable Oath 21 (Call of Cthulhu)


The Unspeakable Oath 21
The Unspeakable Oath 21 is a modern horror magazine for Call of Cthulhu and Cthulhu Mythos role-playing written by a collaboration of authors and published by Arc Dream Publishing.
By Aaron T. Huss

Learn more about The Unspeakable Oath 21 here
Purchase The Unspeakable Oath 21 here
Find other Call of Cthulhu products here

Once again, Arc Dream Publishing takes you through the many possible realms of the Cthulhu Mythos with another issue of The Unspeakable Oath (not quite quarterly as promised, but that’s okay). Continuing with their branching out of support, issue 21 not only supports Call of Cthulhu, but continues its promise of being a Cthulhu Mythos RPG magazine by presenting material for Cthulhu Dark (usable with Trail of Cthulhu and Call of Cthulhu) and Fiasco. Each new issue continues to be an excellent read with twisted romps through the Cthulhu Mythos, bringing you to new areas you may not have thought about before. In other words, this issue does not disappoint, even though it took so long to be released.

CONTENT

There are three Mysterious Manuscripts covering a 1928 story about “The Dunwich Horror,” a mysterious modern book that seems to change with every reader, and a 17th century book discussing witch trials.

Arcane Artifact: Das Teufelherz is an item corresponding to the Ein Konto der Hexeraserei im Lindheim Mysterious Manuscript featuring

The Eye of Light and Darkness features nine new reviews of Cthulhu Mythos products.

Sukakpak is a systemless scenario written for universal usage across Cthulhu Dark, Call of Cthulhu, Trail of Cthulhu, and Nemesis. It places the Investigators in a precarious situation along the trans-Alaskan pipeline in the Sukakpak Mountains in Alaska. This scenario is full of twists and turns and sure to drive your investigators insane.

Tale of Terror: The Mock Auction features a mysterious item with a Victorian history.

Unaussprechlichen Klutzen is a Fiasco playset allowing for a certain take on H.P. Lovecraft’s stories, but doesn’t necessarily have to be Cthulhu Mythos.

The Man With a Thousand Faces is the flagship scenario for this issue of The Unspeakable Oath, covering about half the entire magazine. This is a fantastic 1920s Call of Cthulhu scenario placed in Hollywood featuring the maddening investigation of a silent-film actor and his current state of affairs. Although the stat blocks are for Call of Cthulhu, the majority of the scenario can easily be used abroad.

Directive 108: Tradecraft Meets Lovecraft delves into the Tradecraft mechanics for Delta Green and their importance.

Message in a Bottle: She Had Everything wraps up this issue as a creepy piece of fiction with an endless number of ideas for creating a scenario around.

OVERALL

I continue to look forward to each new issue of The Unspeakable Oath, and issue 21 continues that excitement. The overall format is slightly different than before in that there is a single, flagship piece that consumes a large portion of the magazine with other pieces in various length supporting the overall hobby and Mythos. This is a great method of showcasing one particular article (this one happens to be a scenario), giving the reader a very specific reason to entice purchasing. You get this fantastic scenario and with it comes a gathering of other supplemental and adventure material. And I should add that The Man With a Thousands Faces is a wonderfully written scenario.

RATINGS

Publication Quality: 8 out of 10
The Unspeakable Oath 21 sticks to the standard formatting and layout seen in the previous three issues. Editing was not as good as before and many obvious errors were found, but nothing too detrimental to the content. I always enjoy the artwork chosen and Bradley McDevitt really has a way of capturing the Cthulhu Mythos.

Storyline: 10 out of 10
The scenarios available in The Unspeakable Oath 21 are not only well-written, but interesting and captivating in terms of keeping your attention and making you guess at what’s around the corner. I love the style of Sukakpak being written with no in-game stats and instead using icons to depict what type of action should be done and referencing a simple key for four different game systems. I would love to see more scenarios like that in the future as they present valuable material to Keepers outside of Call of Cthulhu, including the free Cthulhu Dark.

Desire to Play: 10 out of 10
All the scenarios and adventure hooks within issue 21 are interesting and could easily make for some great game-play. Everything herein does a wonderful job sticking to H.P. Lovecraft’s original themes within his Cthulhu Mythos writings and keep with that hidden horror instead of the obvious, in-your-face style. If you enjoy Call of Cthulhu and any of the Cthulhu Mythos RPGs, these scenarios and adventure hooks are right up your alley.

Overall: 9 out of 10
The Unspeakable Oath 21 is another great issue of the Cthulhu Mythos RPG magazine. If only to add to your ever-expanding collection of material, this issue presents a number of great scenarios and tools for the Keeper to create their own great scenarios. The price is unbeatable for how much material you get, and as always, the magazine looks great. This is an issue for all styles of Cthulhu Mythos role-playing.

Share this post:

Related Posts