- The 1920s Investigator's Companion - this book might be disqualified as it can be considered a "core book" for players. I'll add it to my list anyway, and add a fourth as a bonus. This book is just great when it comes to suggestions for character concepts. The long listing of professions and how to create those kind of characters are really helpful. If you want to get away from the dilemma that the characters are an unlikely bunch, you could pick a section and have all make characters from that type or one similar. Other goodies are the sections on research facilities, and how to get around. If you play in a historical setting these facts are gold. They are also well presented. We'll see how the 7th edition is designed, but this book would be great as the core of a Players Guide.
- Cthulhu by Gaslight 3rd ed. - This choice might surprise some, but I think the second great era for any kind of horror game is the gaslight era. This is a great book with lot of details about the geography of London and how people lived back then. There are also some good advice and tweaks for character generation that can be used for other eras as well. Naturally there are a few scenarios to start that campaign at the island.
- Arkham Unveiled - Is there any book more iconic than this? Arkham is at the heart of Lovecraft country, and this is a book that gives a pretty good overview of a typical city of that area. There are lots of small mysteries and oddities you can make adventures out of, and there are nothing better than a university that can work as a patron for cerebral adventurers. If that's not enough, there's bootleggers and criminal gangs for more two fisted games. Round it off with a few scenarios and you have a good place to mine for lots of gaming.
The second obvious choice, and the one I'll pick since my list above leans toward the historical eras, is Delta Green. Sure, by now it's also history, but it's modern day and tweakable to be used for 2013 as well, or whatever. It would be easir for me to pack for my island trip as well, since I own it. But, I have actually not read it all, so that will suit me fine. I can stay on the island for a while!
I bet some of those choices would meet with arguments! Agree? Disagree? Feel free to say so.
We'll see what game comes up next. You know where to find me...