I have run adventures and created campaigns in more than just the Fantasy genre. One genre that always appealed to me was Noir detective stories. I am big fan of “The Maltese Falcon”. Back in the late 1980’s I purchased Pacesetter’s “Chill” (1984) boxed set rules. The rules and adventures for the game were set in the contemporary time frame but strangely all of the wonderful interior art by Jim Holloway was clearly set in the 1850’s. I decided I did not like the 19th century setting or the contemporary setting so I chose to set my Chill adventures in the mid-1930’s - perfect for a Noir setting. I only wrote 3-4 scenarios but I thought it was some of the my more original work.
One adventure I wrote called The House on Whispering Hill (1995). I had inherited a 1923 World Atlas with detailed town and city maps around the world including a small town near Boston called Woburn and Boston itself. So I set the scenarios in Boston with a very easy starter adventure in Woburn. The adventure was a house haunted by a ghost. The ghost could be dangerous, but she only wanted closure on a task and if players picked up on enough clues they would be able to complete the scenario and rid the house of the ghost without any combat at all. It was an all investigative scenario with the ghost distracting the players with a constant stream of haunting activity as long as they were in the house. I ran it twice at Conventions and I always provided pre-rolled characters but let players modify and outfit their characters pretty much however they wanted. Most players chose a lot of guns which were completely useless against a ghost and could be in fact used against them. I provided enough clues to the mystery that I never had a group not figure out the mystery.
The town map of Woburn is based on the actual 1923 Atlas map with some artistic interpretations to fit the scenario. The house map is a total fabrication based on hazy memories of farmhouses near where I grew up.
|The Hill House|