Friday, August 19, 2011

Shambling Cosmic Horror

Tomorrow is H.P. Lovecraft's birthday, were he alive today, he would be impossibly old.

To confess, I've never been a huge fan of his works, indeed I could only choke down about half of At The Mountains of Madness. I wish I had discovered his work earlier in life, when I was more apt to slog through thicker language.

However, I really enjoy the mythology, lore, and mystique that surrounds his body of work.

I've been looking over the 5th edition of Chaosium's Call of Cthulhu game today, something I've always been curious about, but never played. The rules seem a bit obtuse to my eyes, and if I were to play a game, I'd like to do it with an experienced group of players, or at least an experienced "Keeper". I think one of my players, who is a fine DM in his own right, owns a copy of the D20 system version of the game and that might make for a welcome distraction after we finish our current D&D adventure.
Despite my disdain for the D20 system, which I might get into at a later date, I'm more than happy to be a player in it. To quote Heat, "For me, the action is the juice." Rules be damned.
So long as I'm enjoying myself, it really doesn't matter to me what the rules are. I'm in it for the action, which is not to say combat. What I mean to say is that I enjoy pretending to be someone else in a fictitious scenario with my friends who are also pretending to be someone else. Pure escapism, that's the ticket. Exploring fantastic scenarios, be they based on medieval Europe, an imagined future, or a version of the 1920's where mind-shattering horrors are released from the not-space between dimensions in a perverse mockery of live birth, is a welcome and healthy distraction from the very real horrors of mundane existence; something I think that Lovecraft understood, and approved of.

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