Kult

This latest episode sees us return to our discussion of our favourite non-Lovecraftian horror role-playing games, with Matt sharing his unwholesome love of all things Kult. Admittedly, it would be difficult to make anything related to Kult wholesome.

Angelo

Love takes many forms, some illegal in your jurisdiction

Kult, for those who haven’t encountered it, is a Swedish RPG first translated into English in the early 1990s. The setting is one of the richest and strangest in horror gaming, taking in Gnostic Christianity, splatterpunk and a sense of oppressive gloom that could only have come from a Nordic clime. The game has been through a number of English-language editions and publishers, but is currently out of print. We can only assume that Lictors are responsible. Lictors are always responsible.

lictor

Go on, ask him to get Kult back into print. We’ll wait here.

Kult can be a controversial game, largely because of its religious, violent and sexual elements, and be warned that our discussion reflects this. Admittedly we spend more time complaining about the layout of some of the supplements than we do about, say, eating babies, but the point still stands.

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4 comments on “Episode 31 – The Good Friends join a sinister Kult

  1. It was quite amusing to me to read your comments about Kult, the background and the rules engine. I haven’t played the game since the early 90’s, I have to admit, but we did have some fun with it then.

    Amusing trivia about the game editions: The 1st english edition was actually a translation of the 2nd swedish edition. (Or maybe it was re-written for the english version, which was then translated to swedish for the second swedish edition? The publication dates suggest that.) Anyway. One complaint that was leveraged in Sweden against the second edition is that it changed and elaborated the background to make it less dark and more game-able. Maybe that is where the idea of the Demiurge originally being human comes from, in the first ed the Demiurge was just gone.

    I was active in the swedish convention scene at the time and ended up playing, play testing and running a bunch of Kult games written by the authors, Gunilla Jonsson and Michael Petersen. From what I remember most of them were rather rules light and had little combat. They were more mood pieces.

    The rules system was lifted more or less straight from two of the authors earlier games, En Garde! (17th c. swashbucking rpg) and Skuggornas Mästare (‘Masters of Shadow’, a modern rather gonzo superheroes and ninjas rpg). The game system did not match that well with the Kult setting, which I think the authors rather quickly realised as well.

    • sdorward Nov 29, 2018

      Thank you for that insight! It explains a lot about the disconnect we experienced when playing with the original mechanics. It’s surprising that they lasted as long as they did.

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