Contemplating writing a scenario for Black Books - has anyone played it yet? In particular has anyone played a CoC scenario using Black Books instead? What do you like/dislike about Black Books? How could it be better?
Post by stevemitchell on Feb 25, 2022 22:12:04 GMT -6
Nearly 4 years late in replying, but a game called BLACK BOOKS needs. . .more Mythos and occult tomes! So here are a couple of suggestions:
The book known as the Occultus (which means “Hidden” in Latin) was written in 165 A.D. by the traveler and sage Hieriarchus, a Romanized Greek. This work reveals the dark truths underlying many aspects of traditional Greco-Roman mythology, and includes related material on Etruscan, Syrian, and Egyptian cults. Some of the topics in the Occultus include:
• The noxious rites of the primal witch-goddess known variously as Lilith, Hecate, Diana, Herodias, and Nocticula
• The true nature of Summanus, the Etruscan god of death
• The invocations required to summon and bind the Lemures, the malevolent dead
• The identification of the god Vediovis with the primal entity Vorvadoss
• The secret history of Nephren-Ka, the Black Pharaoh, who did that which caused his name to be stricken from all records and monuments
Date: 165 A.D. Language: Latin TN: 15 SAN: 1D3/1D8 Mythos Lore: +1 Spells: 1D3
BLACK SPELL OF SABOTH
The book known as the Black Spell of Saboth is attributed to one Mazonides, otherwise unknown.
One description of the book follows:
“It was a heavy book, bound in leather, and apparently quite old.
“There was no name on the cover.
“The title page bore the inscription, translated from the French:
“Black Spell of Saboth.
“The name of the author was Mazonides.”
And here is a passage from the book, “. . .written in an archaic French that suggested the days of Henry IV. . . .” so, either late 16th or early 17th Century:
“And then Her voice rises to a shriek, and there is a cauldron boiling in front of her; and the flames under the cauldron are like unto black flames, and in the cauldron is the Rose of Blood, which has its roots in Hell, the Rose of seven-and-twenty petals, boiling in it; and the Lady of the Crossroads. . . .”
The “Her” and the “Lady” of the passage undoubtedly refer to the witch-goddess known variously as Lilith, Hecate, Diana, Herodias, and Nocticula.
Date: Ca. 1600 A.D. (in French translation) Language: French, probably taken from a Greek original text TN: 15 SAN: 1/1D6 Mythos Lore: +1 Spells: 1D2
Post by stevemitchell on Feb 26, 2022 22:01:27 GMT -6
I should have mentioned that both the Occultus and the Black Spell of Saboth are from the writings of Robert Bloch, who provided precious little information about these two tomes.
And here is one from Mr. Bloch's friend, Henry Kuttner:
THE BOOK OF IOD
A Greek version of The Book of Iod was believed to have been captured at Constantinople during the Fourth Crusade (1204 A.D.) and taken to Italy, where it was rendered into Italian. There is a later English translation by Johann Nergus. The book expounds on the dark mysteries of Iod, Vorvadoss, Nyogtha, and other obscure deities.
Date: Before 1200 A.D. Language: Originally in Greek, with subsequent Italian and English translations TN: 20 SAN: 1D3/1D8 Mythos Lore: +2 Spells: 1D4
Post by stevemitchell on Feb 27, 2022 11:39:08 GMT -6
One of the things I like about Black Books is the cover illustration, which shows the hazards involved in perusing forbidden tomes. (I assume this is from one of the old pre-Code horror comics.). I always felt there should be a special Monster write-up for the thing portrayed there--and now, there is!
Defense Rating: 14 Hit Dice: 4 Save: +4 Attacks: Claws x 7 (D3 each attack) To Hit: +4 Special: See below SAN save: 10 SAN loss: 1/1D3
Certain Mythos Tomes may be “booby-trapped” with a mystical link to a Custos Libri (Guardian of the Book). A character attempting to read a such a Mythos Tome will be attacked by the book’s Guardian at some point during his or her week of study (Keeper’s decision as to when). The creature will appear behind the reader and will always have initiative on the first round of combat. It will fight until slain. Should it kill the unfortunate reader, it will disappear, taking the book in question with it.
A Custos Libri appears as a tall, grotesque humanoid, clad in ill-fitting robes of green or purple, with four right arms and three left arms.
(What is the chance a specific Mythos Tome has a Custos Libri linked to it? I would recommend rolling a percentile chance based on the books’ Mythos Lore bonus—so, 2% for the Dhol Chants, 4% for the Necronomicon, etc. It won’t happen often, but when it does, it will be quite a surprise for the unsuspecting reader!)