[Let’s Study Achtung! Cthulhu Keeper’s Guide] Part 1: From The Shadows & Inside The Reich

Hello everyone, glad to be back and posting again after a hectic workweek. Today we’re staring our coverage of the Achtung! Cthulhu Keeper’s Guide, the other half of the game reserved for the GMs.

I have to admit that I’ve been looking forward to checking this out as I’m quite used to being a GM and if this game is going to get any play time in my table, I suspect I’m going to have to be the one to run it.

Anyway, let’s get started with the first chapter of the book, which gives us a very quick introduction to the game, and immediately launches into what might be my favorite part: The Secret Chronology of a World at War.

As with the Investigator’s Guide, this Chronology is straightforward, mixing historical stuff with the occult events in the game. It’s a compelling read, and while I’m no expert in history, the plot hooks were practically all over this timeline.

As a side note, adding the page references to entries that are mentioned in the book are a nice touch, if only to bring attention to things that are discussed later on.

Sidebars are still here, with mention of the other interesting trivia in the timeline often talking about remarkable characters or special operations conducted in the time.

The next chapter, Inside the Reich, talks about the Germans, and leaves the choice of playing German Investigators up to individual groups. That said it still has a small sidebar talking about how games centered on German players can involve Espionage and Infiltration.

Special attention must be called to a short Essay by Kenneth Hite warning about the dehumanization of the Germans just because they’re painted by history as the enemy in World War Two. It’s a great piece and one that I was certainly looking for when I saw that they were going to discuss Germany in the Keeper’s Guide. It’s important to remember that all sides of the war were human, and majority of them didn’t want to be involved in the atrocities that were committed at the time.

The rest of the chapter portrays a non-secret history timeline of events from a German perspective, further adding to just how well Achtung! Cthulhu manages to portray all the sides of the conflict in a respectful fashion, while still keeping things interesting from a game perspective.

The Keeper’s Guide is off to a great start. I’m impressed by how the game handled the subject matter of the Germans in World War 2 with an eye towards presenting them as people and not as targets. It’s a solid move and one that I definitely count as a big plus.

Next up we’ll be taking a look at the next two chapters: Might Makes Right? & The Other Secret War

For those interested and would like to follow along, you can get a copy of the Achtung! Cthulhu Books in PDF format from DriveThruRPG

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