Descend into madness – and whale guts – in Call of Cthulhu’s new trailer

Call of Cthulhu

For those wondering whether the latest trailer for Call of Cthulhu would be a Pixar-like romp with colourful anthropomorphic household appliances, or a murky stumble through whale guts into a sanity-sucking abyss, it’s the latter. I know there were a few of you.

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Call of Cthulhu is a mystery-horror game in which you play private detective Edward Pierce. You’ve been hired to investigate the death of an acclaimed artist and her family on a remote island, but predictably enough, All Is Not As It Seems. The new trailer gives us our first taste of the plot, wherein mutilated whale corpses and vanishing bodies are just stepping stones into a deeper mystery.

The premise and setting are bang on, considering the source material. For those of you not yet burdened by the terrible knowledge, Call of Cthulhu is a tabletop RPG by Chaosium, first published in 1981. Inspired by the HP Lovecraft story of the same name – and Lovecraft’s broader fiction – it differed from traditional RPGs such as Dungeons & Dragons by causing players to feel weak and fearful, rather than empowered and accomplished.

Typically, players investigate an innocent mishap, only to peel away onion-like layers to discover a dark scheme of harrowing scale. As they learn more about the true horrors behind the world and the irrelevance of humanity, their sanity wanes, and their typical fate is death or the asylum. The board game doesn’t assume that players will survive, let alone remain sane.

Chaosium are still around and helping devs Cyanide bring their game to the digital world. This is one to watch if you’re a fan of mysteries, or if you like your horror with fewer silly jump scares and more in the way of deep, sucking dread.

Screens are available on the game’s website, which is otherwise still under construction. Call of Cthulhu is expected to release some time this year.