The Sleuth (investigator)

For our non-English speaking fans, or those without a classical education, a “Sleuth” is a crime-solver extraordinaire. For example, Sherlock Holmes is a Sleuth. So is Gary Sinise’s character on CSI: New York. Incidentally, there is a great movie named Sleuth from 1972 which I recommend without reservations. It was remade in 2007, but I haven’t seen the remake, so can’t say one way or the other. (It is lower-rated on IMDb though.)

Anyway, the Sleuth investigator forces all the players to add up their VPs before his attack is calculated. This doesn’t take long. Then, the player with the MOST current VPs adds 3 to his raid’s strength, which basically means it usually is able to eradicate his first Trap or skip over his asylum barrier. Of course since he’s in the lead, no one ever feels sorry for him. Sometimes more than one player is in a dead heat for most VPs. In that case they could feel sorry for each other I guess. But usually they don’t.

The Bhole (monster)

The Bhole is an easy monster to understand, and also extremely popular with our players. It was discovered as a result of S. T. Joshi’s amazing editorial work on Lovecraft’s original text. You see, before S. T. Joshi, the huge worm-like monsters that periodically show up in Lovecraft’s tales were called “Dholes”, I believe as a result of Farnsworth Wright’s meddling.But in HPL’s original text, they were termed “Bholes”. So we have introduced the Bhole, under its correct early name. Since Bholes nastily burrow forever, the Bhole ability is that when you gain it, you ALSO gain a chamber. This sets off a cascade of events – because usually when you earn a monster (via the Silver Twilight Lodge or the Spectral Horror ritual), you also get a chamber. This means if you pick a Bhole for your critter, you basically get TWO chambers at once. This can really give you quite a good defense. You should have little to fear for the foreseeable future.

Then What the Heck is a “Dhole”?

Well, Dholes are still a “thing” in my adaptations of Lovecraft’s works. For one thing, other authors who used Lovecraft’s creations (Derleth, Frank Belknap Long, for instance) used the word “Dhole” or “Doel” as a monster (probably because they were unaware that Lovecraft’s original term was “Bhole”). And Arthur Machen, whose work Lovecraft adored, also uses the word “Dol” for a monster.

So what is a Dhole? Lovecraft mentions Bholes in two tales. One is “The Dream-Quest of Unknown Kadath”, where bholes burrow in the Vale of Pnath, and are never, ever, seen, only heard and felt. They are colossal in size. The other tale is “Through the Gates of the Silver Key”, where they are extraterrestrial behemoths destroying the world of Yaddith. In the second tale, the Bholes are totally visible.

What I posit is that these two different worm-titans should be two different beasties. The bholes of Pnath don’t seem like they are going to destroy the world, but are nonetheless creepy as hell. But the bholes of Yaddith are a threat to the world. So anyway I decided that “bhole” was the Dreamlands monster, and “dhole” was the extraterrestrial monster. (In my Sandy Petersen’s Cthulhu Mythos for Pathfinder book I go into more detail on this topic.)

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