H. P. Lovecraft Drinking Game
The H. P. Lovecraft Drinking Game
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HPL, as a teetotaler, is probably rolling in his grave because of this... but we couldn't resist.

Yes, you, too, can get schnockered to the lyrical words of H. P. Lovecraft! Basically, this is a slightly different take on the usual film/TV drinking game, only one of the people in the room has to be reading Lovecraft out loud (or in the Solitaire version, you can just be reading quietly with your own supply of alcohol-of-choice). Choose one of HPL's many short stories (we suggest "Dagon" for a quick game and "At the Mountains of Madness" for a weekend bender). The game continues until you or any others reach a desired state of numbed consciousness.

Some of the real entertainment of this game is the fact that whoever is reading out loud also must drink. Given Lovecraft's proclivity towards challenging vocabulary, the reader's job steadily increases in difficulty and humor.

Remember, do this only if you are of legal drinking age and are not planning to drive. Otherwise, we'll send our pet shoggoth to get prehistoric on your tuckus.

Is there anything we missed? Donate your ideas by e-mailing us. If your ideas are deemed worthy by the Elder Gods, we minions will add them to the game (with all due credit, of course).

The main body of material for this game was conceived by Dan and Melissa.

Drinking Rules

General Take a gulp any time that Lovecraft:

    ...uses more than one adjective in a row, i.e.: "Molded by the dead brain of a hybrid nightmare, would not such a vaporous terror constitute in all loathsome truth the exquisitely, the shriekingly unnamable?" ("The Unnamable")

    ...uses a purposely vague description. (i.e. "unspeakable horror")

    ...refers to an other-worldy location. (i.e., Sarnath, Kadath in the Cold Waste, and the like. "The Dream-Quest of the Unknown Kadath" will put you under the table easily.)

    ...refers to an other-worldy entity by proper name. (Remember, Cthulhu and Nyarlathotep are proper names of single entities, but Mi-Go and shoggoth are not; they are types of entities.)

    ...states anything racist, sexist, fascist, or generally non-PC. This rule makes "The Horror at Red Hook" particularly nasty to get through. Don't debate too much about what is racist or sexist, though... When in doubt, drink.

    ...uses the "British" spelling of any word, such as "colour" or "favour".

    ...any time a character winds up at a temple or church.

    ...any time a "forbidden" book is mentioned in the story. This includes De Vermis Mysteris, Unaussprechlichen Kulten, and, of course, The Necronomicon, among others.

Words Down your drink whenever the following words appear:





Story Specific Finish your drink whenever the any of these situations occur:

    Six-foot-tall albino subterranean penguins waddle into the storyline. ("At the Mountains of Madness")

    The protagonist discovers that he can't blink. ("Shadow Over Innsmouth")

    Cannibalism. ("Rats in the Walls" and "Picture in the House")

    The storyline is repeated in brief. ("Herbert West -- Re-animator", which was released as a serial and thus had to remind readers of what happened in the previous issue.)

    Fat felines lounge about after some mean humans disappear. ("The Cats of Ulthar")

Bonus After finishing a story, check to see if anyone in the room can still quote the opening lines to "The Call of Cthulhu" without peeking at the book. Everyone else must finish one drink for every sentence that the quoter can correctly quote.

This is a good way to get your friends really, really pickled, so start memorizing... Though ideally, everyone should already be blotto enough by the end of a story to be unable to recite anything from memory.

For reference, here is the opening paragraph:

"The most merciful thing in the world, I think, is the inability of the human mind to correlate all its contents. We live on a placid island of ignorance in the midst of black seas of infinity, and it was not meant that we should voyage far. The sciences, each straining in its own direction, have hitherto harmed us little; but some day the piecing together of dissociated knowledge will open up such terrifying vistas of reality, and of our frightful position therein, that we shall either go mad from the revelation or flee from the light into the peace and safety of a dark new age."

If no one can quote any part of this, then check to see if anyone can quote the famous Necronomicon rhyme. Everyone else must finish one drink if somebody correctly murmurs from memory, "That is not dead which can eternal lie, and with strange aeons even death may die."

In Brief

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