I've heard a lot about Silent Legions, the OD&D-like Cthulhu RPG. It sounds interesting but I'm not ready to pay $20 for a PDF or $40 for a printed book totally sight-unseen.
Does anyone have it, has anyone played it, can anyone tell me more about it?
(By the way, it's amazing to me that with all of the sub-boards here I've never made one for Cthulhu.)
Marv / Finarvyn DCC playtester (2011) S&W WhiteBox author (2009) C&C playtester (2003) Builder of the TrollBridge for T&T; Amber Diceless player since 1993 OD&D Player since 1975; Metamorphosis Alpha since 1976
"Don't ask me what you need to hit. Just roll the die and I will let you know!" - Dave Arneson
I have it, but never ran it! I do steal a lot from it for my mythos gaming. As Stars Without Number, the system is OD&D with a -2/+2 range of modifiers, Target 20 combat system, and a Traveller-like skill system based on 2d6+mods.
The interesting bits of the system are in the classes, which have their little things. I think the classes in Silent Legions are Investigator, Tough, Socialite, Scholar, not sure if there are others. They all get a variety of nice abilities at different levels that give them some gimmick to play with.
Most of the system is streamlined, but not as much as say, S&W Whitebox: it's a fully-fleshed game based off the original game and traveller, in essence.
What I really like about it, which is Kevin Crawford's main "thing" I think, is the tools for sandbox play that are in there: you've got a system of locations/factions using tags to build all the gamey parts of your world, give inspiration or just organize your stuff well. You've got generators for a lot of stuff, like building your own mythos, monsters, alien species, cults, etc. It actually feels more lovecraftian to me than using the well-known beasties, as here you've got all the unfathomable and horrifying of the actually unknown, instead of the same old same old. YMMV, but I prefer to do "lovecraftian" than "lovecraft", if that makes sense .
The flaws in the game are difficult to find. For me it breaks down to a personal preference for my house-ruled OD&D over KC's house-ruled OD&D, but most if not all of the book can be used even if you're not using the exact variant that he's using. All these generators are in-depth, by the way, meaning they do more than just putting a random order to thoughts you could have in a few seconds of reflexion, but they still require you to do the actual thinking, which is my favorite kind of random.