Episode 246: Dealing With Downtime

We’re back and we’re taking things easy. Sometimes, after a particularly hectic battle against the forces of eldritch darkness, a bit of downtime is just what the doctor ordered. Literally. What could be better than kicking back, washing off the ichor, and checking yourself into nice, peaceful facility until you stop screaming? The only thing that might improve it would be fitting in a bit of shotgun practice between therapy sessions.

Main Topic: Dealing With Downtime

This episode, we discuss how we handle downtime in Call of Cthulhu and other RPGs. In any campaign, there will always be those quiet moments between the main adventures when time moves differently. Maybe the heroes are on a long voyage or convalescing to restore their bodies and minds. They might simply be getting on with everyday life while awaiting the next call to action.

So how do you handle this downtime? Is it purely a mechanical phase for recovery and advancement? Does it present some unique roleplaying opportunities? Or is it best simply handwaved away?

Things we mention in this episode include:


Scott on So, I’m Writing a Novel

Scott recently joined Oliver Brackenbury on his most recent podcast venture, So I’m Writing a Novel. In particular, Oliver is writing a sword and sorcery novel, and has been discussing the genre with a wide range of people. The discussion with Scott, released as episode 54, focuses on the shared roots of sword and sorcery and the Cthulhu Mythos.

As we mention, Oliver has also started a related magazine, called New Edge Sword & Sorcery. There is a preview issue available now for subscribers to the magazine’s mailing list.

Regular listeners might remember that Scott appeared on Oliver’s other podcast, Unknown Worlds of the Merril Collection, earlier in the year to discuss how the Cthulhu Mythos has developed beyond Lovecraft.

A Weekend With Good Friends

Player sign-ups for A Weekend With Good Friends are currently open, although you’ll need to act fast. This is the online RPG convention organised by our lovely listeners and hosted on our Discord server. We have a web page with important details and links, which we will update as things progress.

The important dates are:

  • 21st October–27th October – Player signups
  • 28th October – Allocations are announced
  • 4th–6th November – A Weekend With Good Friends
a weekend with good friends logo small

The Blasphemous Tome issue 10

Issue 10 of The Blasphemous Tome is taking shape! There is just time for submissions before the cut-off at the end of October 2022. If you have any articles of up to 500 words or artwork you think would fit, we would love to see them. Just drop us a line at submissions@blasphemoustomes.com.

In the news segment, Matt talks a little more about the state of delirium that inspired his scenario for this latest issue.

Covers of Tomes of yore

October Horror Movie Challenge

Scott is coming to the end of his 2022 October Horror Movie Challenge. He is currently posting a horror film review every day on this very blog. These are all films he has not seen before and, largely, ones available on streaming services. If you want to check out his selections, or even play along at home, you can find full details here.

October Horror Movie Challenge 2022

Improvised Games on ASN

Over the past couple of years, Scott has run special Halloween games of Call of Cthulhu for our good friends at Ain’t Slayed Nobody — namely, “The Green Pumpkin” and “Totally Not a Cult Gathering”. These games were entirely improvised, based on suggestions from listeners. This year, we gathered again for a new improv Halloween game, titled “Dead Man’s Tooth”. Part 1 should turn up on the ASN feed in the not-too-distant future.

Paul’s at Grogmeet

Paul is heading up to Manchester again for this year’s Grogmeet. This is the convention organised by our good friends at The Grognard Files podcast. You may remember Dirk the Dice joining us for a couple of episodes (Gangsters and Gozu) earlier this year, when Matt was in hospital.

Grogmeet takes place at Fanboy Three, Manchester, between Friday 11th and Sunday 13th November. You can find more details on the Grognard Files website.

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One comment on “Dealing With Downtime

  1. Great downtime games = Delta Green’s “Home” time, where projecting Sanity losses to Bonds during game time becomes role played, but also the ability to raise stats, Sanity, or investigate something further, e.g., deciphering a blasphemous tome.

    Also, during downtime for CoC: As Matt suggested, having PCs play with their “seconds” (characters) is a great idea. When I ran MoN for the 2nd time, I had players write 9actual) letters to a real NPC who would reply. That NPC couldn’t join the campaign, but provided a real person to write to. I did that when running THS as well, only having a Keeper in Germany (running MoN) write very cool letters to one of my THS players, and I (Keeper for THS) wrote letters to his MoN player.

    I tried to get more Keepers or player sto do this on the CoC FB group, but few even replied.

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