It seems that whenever Cthulhu is invoked in media the goal is to somehow stop this entity from succeeding. Rise of Cthulhu takes a completely different path. In this card game you are the leader of a faction doing what they can to awaken Cthulhu and the Old Ones. You’re not alone – an enemy faction is also hard at work to complete this before you can. The concept is great fun, and translates quite well to game format where two players engage for around 30 minutes.
There are fifty cultists available and your goal is to have enough of them to control each of the four Lovecraftian areas (Arkham, Dunwich, Innsmouth, Kingsport). Whoever ends up controlling a territory is one step closer to victory while the losing party had better gain favor with the Old Ones in a different location. Along with this aspect are artifact and monster cards. They can help gain or keep an advantage for one player or harm the other.
Making a good Cthulhu game (whatever the format) requires fitting visuals. The card illustrations by James Daly III deserve special mention because they are downright phenomenal. The incredibly dark, comic-esque portraits totally evoke the proper atmosphere. Although I’ve not backed yet, these cards provide a strong temptation to do so beyond the unique gameplay. Rise of Cthulhu is asking for a tidy sum of $7,000. Although they’ve not reached it at the time of this writing there’s not much more to go. Interested gamers can back at the $25 tier to receive the game.