Walter Gottlieb
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I heard from someone that Shub-Niggurath and Yog-Sothoth were the best GOOs to introduce to new players even though the rules recommend Azathoth. What do people think?
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Artem Safarov
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I agree with Azothoth, though not by a wide margin.

The complexity of mysteries etc. is relatively consistent in my opinion between most GOOs (maybe Cthulhu is a bit more complex). What makes Azothoth simpler is the absence of the post-awakening effect.
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Casey Botkin
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Although Yog-Sothoth is probably the easiest, Azathoth is the simplest. I would go with the demon sultan to start. Most of his mysteries are research-based.
 
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David S
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If you do Azathoth, it's probably best to take out the research card of his that shuffles a solved mystery back into the deck (card #5) and the mythos card that does the same.

I know a lot of people like to tough it out and keep those cards in, but if anything is likely to put a newbie off of the game, it would be losing a huge chunk of progress like that.
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Bert McCloud
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Depends how complicated your players are going to find the game. For players where this is the most complex game they've played then yeah, maybe just go with Azothoth so that all you have to focus on is the "main" part of the game and then the rest can come later.

If they've played similar level of things then just go balls to the wall and give them the hardest experience possible; make them thrive for the win!
 
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Matt Steski
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Monadology wrote:
If you do Azathoth, it's probably best to take out the research card of his that shuffles a solved mystery back into the deck (card #5) and the mythos card that does the same.

I know a lot of people like to tough it out and keep those cards in, but if anything is likely to put a newbie off of the game, it would be losing a huge chunk of progress like that.


I can sadly confirm this. It happened in our first game and I have almost never been able to get Eldritch Horror to the table again.
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Tibs
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Do Yog-Sothoth. He's the easiest and doesn't have a "reset a mystery" ability. If your investigtors win their first game, they'll be more likely to want to play again and be hungry for a harder challenge in the future.
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Darren Priddy
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A bit mixed here. I like Yog-Sothoth or Cthulhu due to them being in that mid range where it adds a lot of different story elements but Azathoth is good (if I recall) of just ending the world if it wins which adds a nice finality to the scenario where others have a boss fight. Seems many are good for a start but time will tell if better ones show up in future expansions as good starters.
 
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Pol Michiels
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Every base game GOO works as a first (I've tried them all). Just tailor the GOO to the group's taste. Maybe let them choose investigators first, as this will show what they want to do in the game, then choose a GOO that best allows that strategy. If you have a lot of spellcasters, Yog-Sothoth is great fun. More fighters? Try Shub-Niggurath. Good observation and lore? Azatoth's your guy. Cthulhu has a bit of everything, and is best when people want a challenge.

I would avoid exposing newbies to Yig (too hard, they will probably prefer a first win), Ythaqua (too frustrating with all the hypothermia), or the Elder Things (extremely long game, extra complication of Antarctica board with its local actions).
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Gamer D

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Azatoth isn't the easiest one to defeat but it's the easiest one to understand. If he wakes up you lose, period.
 
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Jan Probst
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I don't think Azzie's relative mechanical simplicity (no woken up mechanics) is all that relevant. "GOO wakes up is BAD" is generic and easy enough to understand, more doesn't need to be said even for non-Azzie GOOs.

Personally I strictly prefer Shub. Unless you have a bunch of Lovecraft purists sitting there, people's natural response to horrible monsters from beyond reality will be to KILL THEM, and vs Shub that happens to not be a waste of time because it slows her doom engine.
Making people's existing gaming instincts work for instead of against them is gonna help more than simpler minutiae of a detail that might or might not come up a few hours in, I feel.
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Gamer D

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Weltenreiter wrote:
I don't think Azzie's relative mechanical simplicity (no woken up mechanics) is all that relevant. "GOO wakes up is BAD" is generic and easy enough to understand, more doesn't need to be said even for non-Azzie GOOs.

Personally I strictly prefer Shub. Unless you have a bunch of Lovecraft purists sitting there, people's natural response to horrible monsters from beyond reality will be to KILL THEM, and vs Shub that happens to not be a waste of time because it slows her doom engine.
Making people's existing gaming instincts work for instead of against them is gonna help more than simpler minutiae of a detail that might or might not come up a few hours in, I feel.


I'll disagree and say that I think the extra complexity of dealing with a final mystery and the GOO changing abilities after they flip over adds enough additional confusion that it's slightly better to use Azathoth on a first play. Honestly though it's not that big a deal either way, really you can play any of them and it'll probably work out ok.
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Oded K
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I think that the thing that makes Azathoth simpler than the other baddies is not that he doesn't have a post-waking up change in behavior, but that he's the only GOO that has no reckoning effect.
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Gamer D

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Pseudonym100 wrote:
I think that the thing that makes Azathoth simpler than the other baddies is not that he doesn't have a post-waking up change in behavior, but that he's the only GOO that has no reckoning effect.


They're not in the base game but the Rise of the Elder Things has no reckoning effect either.
 
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Zen Shrugs
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I would recommend either Azathoth or Cthulhu (yes really) for new players.

Azathoth is the simplest in rules terms, but he's a bit weird and abstract in story terms. Players unfamiliar with the Mythos may find it hard to figure out what's going on, what with the meteors and the moons and the insects and the vague pronouncements of doom. (I know I did.) He also doesn't have dedicated monster minions to set aside for players to see (you don't even get a Shan monster token until the Mountains of Madness expansion, which is a shame as it makes Azathoth games much more thematic when it happens to come out).

Cthulhu is more complex in terms of rules, but as long as one player at the table knows how the game works and can run the fiddly bits, it shouldn't be a problem. The best thing about Cthulhu is that he's very straightforward in story terms for casual players. Horrible sea monsters are about to rise up and conquer the world, sending everybody insane! Simples. Plus the Deep One and Star Spawn tokens are set aside at the start of the game, giving all players a good look at the minions they'll be facing. You still get to fight things fairly often in Indiana Jones fashion. Also, if people have heard of one Lovecraftian monster, it will be Cthulhu (even if it's from South Park or something).

To compensate for Cthulhu's difficulty, I've used the Staged Mythos Deck variant from MoM. This gives new players a couple of easy (ish) turns to get the hang of the game before things get serious.
 
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I let them pick, and usually cthulhu comes in because its the most well known entity.

Mechanically the game is the same for every game and its mostly simple. Azathoth's simplisticity is not really relevant. Doom gets to 0 is bad in all cases, and by the time it happens, its probably hours into the game and the players should already be familiar with whats happening.

I'll second @Gamer D and say that Shub Niggurath great because new players usually love fighting and defeating monsters (which works better than me telling them, oh just ignore that monster it does nothing).
 
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