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I ran a poll on Yog-sothoth.com, the premier Call of Cthulhu website, about how people like to play Call of Cthulhu. These are the results:
4% (0% - 12%) Almost like a LARP, we run around and scream a lot - hardly any dice rolls.
41% (27% - 53%) We talk about our PCs in character but we do roll the dice too.
48% (33% - 60%) We talk about our characters in a mix of first and third person and roll dice quite often.
7% (2% - 17%) We only talk about characters in third person but we hardly ever roll dice. It's like a story.
0% (0% - 5%) Our characters are pretty much playing pieces. We roll dice and then the GM describes what happens to them.
Total Votes : 56

That's the percentage followed by the confidence interval (using the hypergeometric distribution don't you know).

What it shows is that around 89% (78%-96%) of Call of Cthulhu players prefer to play the game in one of the two traditional modes. However, at conventions, in my recent experience, it's about 50% LARP style (particularly in the US although more and ore in the UK too) and 50% first person experience.


( 8 comments — Leave a comment )
Jan. 5th, 2007 03:51 pm (UTC)
At conventions, everyone can hear you scream....
Jan. 5th, 2007 03:53 pm (UTC)
Yes, it does seem people freeform/LARP Cthulhu more at cons than they do at home. I suspect the environment and the player numbers available affect that. Also, I suspect many people are like me and go to cons specifically looking for freeforms but rarely try to organise a freeform at home - it is easier to get a few friends round for a tabletop than to organise something more elaborate and energetic.
Jan. 5th, 2007 04:07 pm (UTC)
Mm, having players on tap, and food, drink etc laid on, certainly makes it a lot easier than organizing one yourself!

The other thing I suppose is that freeforming Cthulhu might lose some of its excitement if you were doing it regularly with the same group of people at home, rather than occasionally at conventions.

And the other other thing is that freeform / LARP may be better suited to one-off than to campaign Cthulhing, at least I think so. Unless you have a very generous effects / props budget and can introduce new snazzy stuff every session.
Jan. 5th, 2007 04:18 pm (UTC)
I've been LARPing Cthulhu for nigh on twenty years now and they certainly take a lot more work than a tabletop game at home. I have played in campaign LARPs but they take so much work you're lucky if you can get more thsn one or two sessions in a year.
Jan. 5th, 2007 04:50 pm (UTC)
These aren't Cthulhu LARPs so much as tabletop games played in a LARP style. There's still a table there somewhere but you don't spend much time at it. You might go there for the occasional SAN roll or skill check but not for much else.

It does tend to depend on the GM but sometimes the players start this kind of thing off too.
Jan. 5th, 2007 04:52 pm (UTC)
And so of course they tend to be 3-5 hour games with high body counts. Such as the one at Continuum where all 24 PCs died, thanks to morthrai (I haven't grown tired of reminding him yet).
Jan. 5th, 2007 06:33 pm (UTC)
Sounds like the In Media Res scenario from Unspeakable Oath. I've rarely played this kind of game outside of a convention. Space issue can be a problem with this kind of game when playing at home.
Jan. 5th, 2007 09:54 pm (UTC)
Xanodria in Pennsyvannia used to run Cthulhu LARPs (don't know if they still do). They were standalone weekends, usually in remote locations. I miss them. So cathartic. So very much screaming and running. Ah the days and nights of terror, I remember them well. And I remember the big bad invariably attacked during dessert, leaving one the choice of sanity or pudding. Hard choice that....
( 8 comments — Leave a comment )