If you’re a fan of H.P.Lovecraft you may recognise and hopefully enjoy seeing this. If you’re unaware of H.P.Lovecraft, then peel the rime off your eyeballs and get into this world of ultimate, sanity-blasting cosmic horror…
What investigators find is not meant to be found - image: Blair Reynolds
Another incredibly dark and disturbing facet of the Cthulhu Mythos – not one of H P Lovecraft’s creations but certainly belongs within the pantheon of Great Old Ones he originally… discovered.
On first glance there appears to be several disparate definitions of the Lloigor. These include August Derleth and Mark Schorer’s trans-dimensional, tentacled obscenity (along with twin Zhar); or Colin Wilson’s invisible vortices of psychic energy that can manifest in physical forms – such as reptilian beasts – giving rise to legends of Dragons and other monsters; or as the many-angled-ones presented by Grant Morrison as capable of taking possession of body & mind of other powerful beings in other parallel universes.
I feel that this lack of clarity is actually a facet of their non-physical nature, their ability to shift their physical appearance (persona) albeit that they tend to use the same one over millenia.
lloiger can manifest as dinosaur - image: Anti-Grav
These are threads that I feel work together; I’ve pulled them into one place and added some of my own interpretations for you to use or ignore, as you see fit:
A Lloiger phyiscal manifestation - image: unknown
<> Lloigor are a race as a opposed to a single entity. Highly evolved, intelligent, shockingly cruel and malevolent. They are timeless but currently a number of them exist here on Earth, “caught up” within the space-time continuum. They are in a weakened state, leaching minimal energy from lay-lines and psychic plexus; as such they reside in the nexus of such energy-feeding networks. As such their historical “personas” have become warped and twisted into creatures that are obsessed on acquiring energy. Worship of them is one way they can achieve this – through ceremonial sacrifices; and so, many Lloigor, normally utterly self-focussed and instinctively brutal, have come to investigate and comprehend the “human condition” and so sometimes play on this to ultimately achieve what they want.
<> Those Lloigor currently on Earth came from the Andromeda Galaxy to the continent of Mu (a former landmass in the Atlantic ocean) and used humans as slaves. Humans at this point were the evolutionary descendant of Australopithecus – which had migrated millions of years earlier as a new species from the flesh-rendering pits of the Elder Things in a region that would eventually become Antarctica. Following the destruction of Mu, the Lloigor retreated below ground (due to diminished power following destruction of their power-providing network of temples and such-like) and left their former slaves to their own devices. These early humans migrated from Mu and populated the earth.
Lloigor can manifest in terrible ways - image: Blair Reynolds
<> They are fundamentally energy beings. When they do take physical form, they take the form of other creatures they have encountered – and been impressed by. The decision behind this is complex and discussed in a moment. The statement “they take the form” is actually misleading. They actually teleport “the being” from a point in (local) space & time, posses its mind and body, and so use it within any other point in (local) space & time. This is something they’ve been doing for a very long time. The creatures so used are effectively ensnared in psychic “aspic” until next brought into play.
<> They have the ability to skim the energy from people sleeping within a few miles of their centre of activity. Such victims wake up feeling lethargic, ill and moody. Depression, suicide and acts of depravity are significantly higher in these locales. Lloigor have learned not to situate themselves near major settlements; despite the appeal of a rich feast of skimmed energy; because they’re wary of certain humans, knowledgeable in the ways of the Mythos, of recognising the symptoms and so tracking them down. Therefore the Lloigor prefer more remote areas where a few people turning into degenerates might not be so readily noticed.
<> The focus point or centre of Lloigor activity in any area unfortunate enough to suffer their presence is no random location. The Lloigor can sense energy and feed from the natural currents (however feeble) of ley lines and other natural and preternatural plexus; they occupy the nexus of these places, where there is the highest convergence of disparate energy fields for them to bask within.
<> The Lloigor employ a variety of methods to infiltrate any local human population. Such cults are composed of individuals drawn into committing acts that are vicious, violent and sadistic; anything that causes pain and terror, two states that generate a lot of energy for the Lloigor to feast from. Cultists will often daub “curious and disturbing symbols” on walls of public places, sometimes looking like grim gang graffiti, extending the influence of the Lloigor in that area. More potent acts of worship involve erecting stone obelisks at key locations – sometimes several, forming a pattern – to help channel energy to the Lloigor.
Strange carved object, portent to disaster - image: Blair Reynolds
<> Choice of physical manifestation is based on a number of motives. One motive is to have the best possible chance of enforcing their will, through violence and terror, on a subjugated “work force”. What better than to employ a Rauisuchidae (dinosaur) or the kind of creature referred to as a dragon? Or one of the more Lovecraftian polyp-like monsters, a mass of pseudopods and ichor-dripping maws; giving rise to August Derleth’s Twin Obscenity. Sometimes other motives come into play; Lloiger cast themselves as an almost human character – perhaps one of the Great Magi (Non-human species from Yellow Dawn rulebook). Whatever the choice, it is something that the Lloigor will have encountered in more powerful days (historically long time ago) and been able to ‘capture’ as a physical host to use again and again through any time in the (local) space-time continuum.
<> The Lloigor can create these physical manifestations / teleportations throughout time – but relocating such entities in space (distance from the nexus, or centre of Lloigor activity) is not possible because of the amount of energy required. Therefore these physical manifestations / teleportations occur in the same area – again and again – over time.
<> As such, in physical form, the Lloigor are unable (or unwilling) to travel far from the centre of their activity – the nexus of their power-gathering plexus.
<> The fact that the Lloigor is using such extreme measures for a physical manifestation means that it is not likely (or unable) to use any other physical form. This leads to a build up of sightings and local legends of the same “thing” in a contained region.
<> Lloiger can travel much further in astral form. However, an unusual aspect to this creates a physical phenomenon, a cold wind that blows across the land as they move. The wind can be as gentle as a chill breeze or a furious bora that can sweep adults off their feet; the reasons of what and when are down to individual GM.
Boston Society for American Indian Preservation - image: Blair Reynolds
<> Any character entering the Astral Plane to investigate what is there as the wind blows across them will encounter the sanity-crushing presence of the Lloiger in !!dispersed!! form. Like a wind – the Lloigor flow through the Astral Plane. This is effectively like encountering the Lloigor in its native state and is extremely dangerous. Rule data: forces an ANXIETY check or loose 1/1d10 COOL points. Subsequent consequence of insanity, if it occurs, is always desire to commit suicide (through acute depression) or perform deranged acts of depravity.
<> Teleportation is one way in which they drag potential victims to them. They are able to ‘lock on’ by travelling (astrally) and coalescing a [bubble] around the victim – who then vanishes in the blink of an eye; the victim is taken to the centre of Lloigor activity. Note: the process of coalescing around the victim is not immediate, it takes time and generates noticeable effects such as – static electricity discharging off anybody in the area; an ice-cold tingling across the skin of the victim; a feeling of acute menace and overwhelming depression in the vicinity, experienced by everybody but most noticeable for the victim. Rule data: chance of success is 80% – failure results in no effect but Lloigor loses the MPs; any character going onto the Astral Plane will encounter the Lloigor and can attempt to “fight” it away through POW attacks.
<> Kinetic detonation. One of the Lloigor’s most devastating attacks. It is a remote attack with a range of several miles. They can focus on an area and cause a massive explosion (not chemical or fireball, but of raw energy, pushing out a shock wave); the attack is preceded by a buzzing that is more felt than heard; ears tingle and itch. Then boom. Bodies can be ripped apart; structural walls and floors can be blown out; at a further distance the concussion wave can rupture vital organs, cause temporary deafness; and scoop up debris from the surroundings and throw it forward much like a fragmentation grenade. This does require a lot of energy so would only be used against a significant threat to the Lloigor.
<> Spontaneous human combustion. Lloigor can cause a victim’s fatty tissue to melt beneath the flesh and vital fluids to boil. They use this to cause agonising pain – to their worshippers, or if prolonged, to melt and char limbs as punishment / coercion; and in extreme circumstances, can result in a runaway effect of total combustion: there are no flames, no smoke, and a victim, if touched, only feels a little warmer than normal – but beneath their skin they’re effervescing away until their core body temperature shuts down vital organs, and still they cook away, evaporating down to charred bone and hardened tissue.
<> The cults of Lloigor can vary across racial and cultural groupings. Worship can be pro-active, by individuals aware of the monster on the fringes of their society; or they can be passive – intrusive – with the Lloigor tampering with the thoughts and dreams of people via the Astral Plane. Also – the Lloigor may not always physically manifest as a monster, which, let’s be frank, would cause quite a stir if witnessed by the common public; some Lloigor do take the form of human beings, or other non-human creatures who have taken the human form. The Lloigor are masters of psychological and psychic torture – they revel in causing terror and pain because of the energy that leaks out of these states. Cultists are battered, shocked, deranged and depraved. They participate in abduction, torture, cannibalism, rape and torture. Some have had limbs melted away; either amputated or left twisted and charred as permanent reminders of their failure to satisfy the monstrous pleasures of these invisible masters. Some have had worse things done to them. Others tattoo their flesh with the chilling iconography of the Lloigor language (if you can call it that). Characters should certainly do everything they can to avoid falling into the hands of some heinous groups, where brutal savagery is merely a component of worship.
Lloigor can manifest in terrifying ways - image: Blair Reynolds
Scenarios of note:
- Watcher in the Valley. Published by Chaosium within a collection of short scenarios called “Tales of the Miskatonic Valley” and is, I think, one of their classics and should not be missed. Written by Kevin Ross and featuring some stunning interior illustrations by Blair Reynolds.
- The Mystery of Loch Feinn. Another Chaosium product. Written by Glenn Rahman. There’s a bunch of nasty thugs living in a remote part of Scotland; there’s a series of strange standing stones; a Loch and a monster in it. (0)(-)
- Horror on the Orient Express. An absolutely legendary Chaosium product. However, the chapter containing the Lloiger, written by Russell Waters, although containing brilliant background information about the location, I dislike the concept of the cult introduced here, I think more could have been made of the wickedness of the worshippers.
- Horror on the Orient Express in a post-apocalyptic setting? Call of Cthulhu to Yellow Dawn conversion, a case study – click
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David J. Rodger (born 1970 in Newcastle Upon Tyne) is a British science fiction & fantasy author and game designer best known for his novels set in a near-future world of corporate and political intrigue. So far he has published five novels; four that are set in the same world: God Seed; Dante’s Fool; Iron Man Project and Edge, and one, Dog Eat Dog, set within the post-apocalyptic world of Yellow Dawn.