The Laundry RPG

Although I’ve played many different game systems over the years, at heart I’m a D&D gamer (34 years and counting). I don’t buy alternatives – at least not since the 80s when I picked up a few out of curiosity but never played (Gamma World, Top Secret, Thieves’ World). Even the 2nd edition Paranoia book I own was a gift (again unused).

But now I’ve invested in a system for running games in the Cthulhu mythos/British secret service genre. Inspiration came from two sessions I signed up for at this year’s Con-Quest in Derby. Normally I look out for Call of Cthulhu and Paranoia role-playing sessions at conventions, if they’re being run, but this time I was too late arriving to sign up so put my name down for The Laundry RPG instead which seemed to be as close to CoC as I was going to get.

I’m glad I did as the games were great (even if I felt too sleepy to do much in the afternoon game), introducing the classic Brain-in-a-Jar with a twist (AM session) and the realm of Faerie (PM session). During lunch time I’d picked up the rule book from the trade stands – such an outlay on a non-D&D item is unheard-of these days.

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And, come June and the UK Games Expo in Birmingham, I pick up the supplementary book, Black Bag Jobs, containing various ready-to-run adventures.

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But the rules for The Laundry RPG are not enough – you need to consume the source material too: Charles Stross’ “Bob Howard — Laundry” series of books:

  • The Atrocity Archives (2004), which also contains the following extra story …
  • The Concrete Jungle (Best Novella winner, 2005 Hugo Awards) available to read online
  • The Jennifer Morgue (2006) which also contains the  following extra story …
  • Pimpf
  • Down on the Farm (2008 novelette) available to read online
  • Overtime (2009 novelette) available to read online
  • The Fuller Memorandum (2010)
  • The Apocalypse Codex (2012 – write faster, damn you!)

My recent birthday meant I received a large pile of the above which all-too-quickly became read with over a year to wait for the paperback version of his next work in the series. Gah!

Now I just need to convince my gaming group that CASE NIGHTMARE GREEN is something they want to experience.

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