Chaosium Dives into Rivers of London RPG

Call of Cthulhu publishers Chaosium have announced they’re developing a tabletop RPG adaption of Rivers of London,Ben Aaranovitch’s series of paranormal police procedural novels.

The announcement came, rather appropriately, at the Dragonmeet convention in London, UK. Though details are still fairly light on the ground it’s been confirmed that the game will use the Basic Roleplaying system found in many of Chaosium’s other games, and that we can expect to be waiting a while to get the finished product.

For their part, the design team refused to even speculate on a timeline. Don’t expect this one to make a surprise appearance on shelves tomorrow morning.

Much like the Lovecraftian tales that spawned Chaosium’s most famous game, Rivers of London blends our own mundane reality with the fantastical. Rather than being horrific explorations of humanity’s darkest fears, however, Aaranovitch’s books tell the stories of a police officer as he and his team investigates crimes throughout London – albeit crimes that tend to involve at least a sprinkling of weird magic.

Chaosium have put out an official announcement already, but they – and Aaranovitch – revealed a handful of details, thoughts and idle speculation about the upcoming game at their Dragonmeet seminar.

Chief among these was news that the core game will come with two different settings – on in the UK and one in the USA.

The British setting is expected to mirror the core “police procedural but with magic” premise of the novels, with player characters taking the roles of police officers and members of The Folly.

The American portion of the game, however, is to be a little looser in tone, with more room for playing around with Rivers of London‘s more fantastical elements. Players will have room to explore the weird, fey creatures that exist in Aaranovitch’s world and take on adventures that don’t quite fit into the story-threads and tone established in the published stories.

There is potential for other settings further down the line – with Germany mentioned as a possibility – but there don’t appear to be any formal plans at the moment.

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