It’s hard to believe that it’s just over a year ago that we first unleashed Cthulhu Eternal, our free/open D100 system for Lovecraft-inspired Roleplaying, on the world. And here we are announcing the release of our SIXTH era-customized version of the rules, this one catering to games set in and around the time of World War II. The new material for this SRD was all written by Roger Bell_West who did a fantastic job of sketching out all the basics you would need to run a wartime game of Cthulhu Eternal.
The World War II SRD for Cthulhu is available right now on DTRPG, and like all our SRDs is 100% open content. If you want to use it for pretty much any purpose, you’re free to do so. If you want to sell your creation, fine, you don’t need to give us a cent. If you want to include a version of the Cthulhu Eternal logo on the cover — we have a free license for one of those also.
Obviously one of the questions to be asked when developing games set in wartime eras is … where does the game sit on the spectrum of “pulp” depiction of the realities of war. And also whether it assumes action in and around actual battles, or focuses on out-of-the-way shadowy corners not directly in the line of the military stuff. For the most part Roger’s SRD is agnostic with regards to these questions — if you want to use it to run a purely historical game (or one where the Mythos has only a peripheral influence on affairs), you certainly can. Alternatively, if you want to create a game with vast occult conspiracies battling it out in some parallel hidden supernatural conflict, the rules would support that equally well. The Cthulhu Eternal system is more deadly than many games, however, so truly over-the-top pulp (“I charge the Shoggoth army with just my bowie knife and a bad attitude”) would probably require some rules work-arounds.
When depicting real-world atrocities like those that happened in World War II, it is always important to be sensitive to the real human suffering which even today is harrowing. Roger strongly recommends (and I heartily agree) that the historical horrors should never have their origins in some force of the Mythos — human beings are capable of evil enough even before they get involved in the picture, and to attribute things to this-or-that Outer God somewhat trivializes that fact. Obviously, though, it’s your game.
Go forth, grab the Cthulhu Eternal World War II SRD today and start scheming about awesome wartime Lovecraftian scenarios, campaigns, and game settings that you can use it to power! The world is ablaze, and its fire can cast dark shadows across any corner of the globe you wish …