The Veil of Isis
I only use a few house rules, and they are outlined or referenced below.
- Previous house rule drafts featured a system inspired by Trail of Cthulhu in which Occupational skills could be used to find Core Clues. I’m replacing that system with one inspired by the forthcoming 7th edition of Call of Cthulhu that involves less bookkeeping for humble Keeper. The new system is known as “pushing” a skill roll and works as follows:
If you fail a non-combat skill roll, you can ask the Keeper if you can “push” the roll and make the die roll again. This constitutes a second attempt, not a re-roll, so it won’t always be possible to push something. Furthermore, failure on the second attempt will bring dire consequences analogous to rolling a Fumble on a normal roll. The Keeper will inform you prior to the second dice roll what those consequences may be; other players at the table are free to offer their own suggestions, but the Keeper has the final say.
For example: your Investigator has broken into the basement of a rare book seller’s and is searching through mouldering boxes of manuscripts by candlelight. You roll Spot Hidden and fail. Sensing that you may be missing an important clue, you ask if you can push, the Keeper says yes, and one of the other players suggests that, if you fail, you lean in too close to a box of manuscripts and set them alight with your candle! The Keeper grins maliciously and agrees that this is indeed a suitable penalty and it is now up to you to decide whether it’s worth pushing that Spot Hidden roll and possibly instead adding arson to your breaking and entering.
- Starting skills are capped at 75% – although for every 10 years you raise your Investigator’s age above the minimum, the max cap goes up by 5%.
- At character creation, players may choose to roll against their POWx1; on a success, they start with 1d6 points of Cthulhu Mythos, representing a previous run-in with the Mythos in some way. The player may define the nature of this experience.
- Players start with Traits, as detailed in Cthulhu by Gaslight.
- Rolling a 96-00 on a SAN check results in losing maximum possible Sanity. Conversely, rolling a 1-5 results in losing the minimum.
- Sanity is not all lost at once for reading tomes. A small amount is lost initially, but the balance (rolled in secret by the Keeper) is lost upon discovering evidence of the book’s incontrovertible truths. For example, simply reading Cultes des Ghoules will not bring about a full loss of SAN; seeing evidence of ghoul activity (or a ghoul itself) will trigger the balance of the indicated SAN loss (in addition to any SAN lost for seeing the ghoul!).
- An Investigator may choose to spend Hit Points to power a spell or ritual once Magic Points are exhausted.