Achtung! Cthulhu 2d20: Operation Black Cap, by Modiphius, c2023, Price: £6, Website
Review by Seth Stauffer
Section M is called upon to track down an artifact that went missing in the Balkans. A plane carrying a mysterious artifact-recently discovered by Black Sun- crashes in a Yugoslavia that is crawling with hostile forces. Additionally, Nazis aren’t the only threat and Operation Black Cap for Modiphius’ Achtung! Cthulhu 2d20. Agents will find themselves in a monstrous three-way dispute that will take courage and luck to survive.
More than anything, this module felt like a gameable Lovecraftian experience. The vileness of war, eldritch horrors, civilian involvement, cults, oh my! Typically, Section M would be face-to-face with Black Sun as the opposed factions square off to achieve their objectives. The mission is built around this idea but twists things so that the real threat Section M is called in to investigate unaligned. It creates something that fits neatly within the game’s scope, but a little outside of what’s expected.
Considering that the primary threat wasn’t a Nazi faction, it would have been interesting to ratchet the pressure up on the PCs. What if things were so bad that the only hope was to agree on a truce with the Black Sun, or face certain doom? This could have been an interesting twist on the story, as well as forcing the players into a difficult moral choice.
Presenting a triangular relationship in this mission gives it a different feel. Black Sun is present, but this module almost feels like Section M is competing against the Nazis in a deadly obstacle course, rather than a head-on confrontation. This interchange between the different factions in Operation Black Cap could have been emphasized more, but the amplified horror element helps the overall quality. This is a fun one-shot that stands out for incorporating a hostile civilian population. Overall, a well-made and challenging outing for players.