• Adventure: Intro: Joe, The gamer

You have a few hours to play some RPGs in a workshop or a convention. You don't have the time to learn the system, and you don't have time to create a character, and worst of all, if you try a new game, you wouldn't even understand the numbers on your character sheet. I know, most people would say: you should play a 5th edition derivative, and that is the answer for everything™ and everything else too. At least if... I wouldn't list all the reasons why we have chosen Call of Cthulhu instead. But this problem led to an adventure idea. 

There are overrated and overhyped products both good and bad. When you are disappointed in a previously well-loved product (be it a TV show, movie series, video game, tabletop game) you often wonder how it became that successful? And that is the starting point of our adventure. Sometimes we say it is about the charisma of some people who helped to hype up and sell a product. Some would say it is a matter of connections. When we speak about connections people mention that people attended the same schools, were fans of the same sports team, visited the same golf course, were members of the same church. And at the last point, people would mention Scientology. Fans of Call of Cthulhu would mention some people might belong to the same cult. And they might practice the very same kind of human sacrifice, and this can lead to a similar supernatural presence.

Anyone who stumbles into some backroom discussions between various members of the entertainment industry to find cultists, human sacrifice, and some monsters, that is a story that works well within the Cthulhu Mythos lore, and escaping from that backroom area and then from the convention too can be a very simple one-page adventure. It is easy to customize, easy to run similar adventures for multiple players. 

That quick solo encounter and some short background can help you to play a pre-generated character in a newbie-friendly campaign. 

But once you would play the main campaign you would also love to continue the story of these characters. Joe, the gamer might be a pre-generated PC or an NPC, but he can investigate the cultists behind different overhyped and overrated products. Even if we keep him focused on this theme, he might visit companies behind many different overhyped products, and can escalate the conflict easily. Some cultist practicing human sacrifice for their otherwise okay products is one thing, but when the hype is around faulty and dangerous products, that is worse.

At some point, it is easy to raise the question: What kills more innocent people, the human sacrifices by the cult? The supernatural monsters around the cult? Or maybe the most dangerous problems are the faulty products promoted this way?

We can start with niche products, like tabletop games. They wouldn't ruin many lives. It is easy to move to software companies that studied how to maximize addiction instead of other improvements to the game. We can touch mainstream media, electronics, and finally big pharma.