Lovecraft the Game

BASIC RULES

– I –  

LOVECRAFT is a fight between Good and Evil. The players explore the city of Providence using cards and dice, discovering the secrets of the Elder Gods. The aim of the game is to publish your story in a magazine or book without losing your sanity, turning to evil… or dying. The strongest hand wins. 

1. The game is played from 2 to 9 players.

There are 69 STORY CARDS, plus 3 INSANITY CARDS, 1 CTHULHU CARD and 2 double cards: Black cat/White cat and Day/Night

The BOARD has 64 squares and 32 PIECES which are played IDENTICALLY AS IN CHESS.

There are 6 Dice: 3xD6, 2xD4, 2xD10

Each writer gets 99 DOLLARS. The Evil player is the bank.

Each character gets 1-6 SANITY CHIPS. 

2. One player is LOVECRAFT, the good side, THE GAMEMASTER. The second player is the EVIL one, other players join the GOOD Side and become members of the “Lovecraft Circle”. The theoretical maximum number of players is 9. 

3. There are 5 SUITS of 13 STORY CARDS, 3 INSANITY CARDS, 1 STATUETTE, and two double cards: 1 BLACK CAT/WHITE CAT and 1 DAY/NIGHT card. The five suits, in order of power, are: HEARTS, MINDS, HANDS, CUPS and STARS, the sign of the Elder Gods. 

4. At the start of the game, 2 cards are layed in the center of the map, the Necronomicon, and one card is put face down, only the Gamemaster knows which one it is. Each player receives 1 card for his character, face up, and one card he only sees. Next 49 cards are laid around the board, face down, 7×7. This leaves 15 cards which are distributed evenly to the players: 8/7, 5/5/5, 4,4,4,3, 4×3, etc 

5. Players choose from one of the four professions, linked to the 4 colors: Writers (Hearts), Illustrators (Clubs), Editors (Diamonds), or Patrons (Spades). The 5th color, the Star, is Evil. WRITERS are represented on the board by KINGS, EDITORS as QUEENS, ILLUSTRATORS are KNIGHTS and PATRONS as ROOKS, NPC are BISHOPS and all others are PAWNS. There is also one CAT on each side.   

6. The aim of the players is to discover and SOLVE RIDDLES open 1 of the 4 gates, and to see the ELDER GODS but to be able to return to write their story in a magazine and finally, to publish it in a book – without losing their sanity, turning evil… or dying. The goal of the Evil is to kill them all. The Necronomicon is only uncovered when one player finds all the 4 GRIMOIRE CARDS with the number  6.

The Game combines elements of POKER, CHESS, MONOPOLY, DOMINOS with STORY TELLING and ROLE PLAYING. THE RULES ARE A SET OF GUIDELINES FOR THE PLAYERS. The Final Word as to their interpretation always depends on the Gamemaster, unless stated otherwise.

CARD GAME RULES

The Game is played in 4 TURNS, each turn has 2 phases: day and night, and 1 in beetween, corresponding to the 5 SUITS – 2 RED: HEARTS and CUPS, 2 BLACK: COINS and SPADES, and one GREEN: ELDER STAR.

1.❤️ EXPOSITION

BUILDING CHARACTER/HAND The game starts with CHARACTER BUILDING by laying the cards face down around the board and throwing the dice to collect those cards. Once every player has 5 cards, this phase is over

2. ♣️ CONFLICT, SECRET

The players EXPLORE the map, story cards are laid down on the map like dominos, RIDDLES ARE SOLVED

3. Then comes the NEGOTIATION PHASE, where cards are exchanged, traded or sold between the players in SECRET NEGOCIATIONS.

4. ♦️ CONFLICT, REVEAL

NIGHT FALLS, CARDS ARE TURNED – Insanity is rolled, SANITY IS LOST.

5. ♠️ RESOLUTION / cards are discarded / they can be turned only once, after that they are consided DEAD. Players can continue, lose theirs minds, become evil… or die.

THE AIM OF THE GAME IS TO GET THE STRONGEST HAND: THE LOVECRAFT AND THE 4 FORBIDDEN BOOKS, CALLED TOGETHER THE NECRONOMICON

1. 1d4 represents sanity. 3d6 represent the 4 skills: Writer / Illustrator / Editor / Patron / Evil, measured 3-18. 1d10 represent the 9 lives of each main character card. Each life point loss is DEFINITIVE and can NEVER BE RESTORED.

2. 1d% is used to determine the success of failure of a task, from 00% to 99%. The difficulty of a task depends on SKILL (3-18) times X depending on the numbers on which the card touch. 

6. The game is played with 4 suits of cards, the 5th color is left aside by common choice. 

Story cards are played, face down. They must cover the crossings and the cards must always touch. The player who reaches the center, the “9” first in exactly 9 cards, wins the 1st round, opening the gate to Cthulhu.

There are 3 INSANITY Cards: Shizophrenia, Paranoia and Psychosis, when they are played the evil player overtakes the other’s players moves for 1d4 turns.

2. The WHITE CAT is for good and the BLACK CAT for bad luck, they can be played for yourself, or against another player, to fill the gaps in a story, or to connect one storyline to another, or to change the course of a story.

3. The aim of the game is to capture the hidden card at the center of the board by laying down a story line of the cards in order from 1 to 10, with the Ace (1) that can also serve as a begining and end card. 6 is 9. 

4. 1, 2 or 3 d6 are thrown to advance on the cards or move the cards clockwise or counter-clock wise. CARDS CAN BE TURNED ONLY TWICE. THEN THEY ARE DEAD. 

 5. The ELDER SIGN is the final phase. Hands are played, players confront each other until THERE IS ONLY ONE left. In the final phase, THE CLIMAX, if the NECRONOMICON (4×6) has been found, Cthulhu is freed and all surviving players reveal their hands one after the other, until only two are left and THE WINNER IS THE ONE WITH THE STRONGEST HAND. 

THIS ENDS THE GAME

The 3 6d are thrown to conquer cards or overturn them. 666 is called “The Devil”, 111 is “Cat’s Eye”.

THE STRONGEST HAND WINS