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Racism-confronting Lovecraftian RPG Harlem Unbound returns in second edition from Call of Cthulhu publisher

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Harlem Unbound, Chris Spivey’s unflinching discussion and confrontation of 1920s racism in the form of a Lovecraftian RPG, is being updated and expanded in a second edition.

Spivey’s roleplaying supplement, which reverses the often sidelined and prejudiced portrayal of minorities in historical horror fiction such as Lovecraft’s, won widespread acclaim for its setting and writing, including three ENnie Awards (plus several other nominations) and a place on the shortlist for this year’s Diana Jones Award for Gaming Excellence.

Publishing the second edition of Harlem Unbound is Chaosium, the studio behind Call of Cthulhu – one of the roleplaying systems supported by the game, the other being GUMSHOE. It’s not clear whether the new edition will continue to support both systems.

Spivey previously announced he was working on an original sci-fi RPG for Chaosium, described as embodying the designer’s “unique sensibility and passion”. The Basic Roleplaying project is currently untitled, with no set release date.

Harlem Unbound: Second Edition will include additional scenarios, plus new maps and artwork, compared to the original version, which Spivey self-published through his indie label Darker Hue Studios. No release date for the upcoming new edition was given.

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