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Subject: New Faction: The Laundry rss

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E J
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It's about time for the actual good guys to shows up! We have here a genuine pro-human, not at all evil* faction. They may not have been able to stop the coming of the Great Old Ones, but they will do everything they can to keep them under control long enough for the stars to be wring once again!
*evilness not measurable on the scale of the Great Old Ones.

As the human faction, they have several unique mechanics, not the least of which is that they are the only faction that can close gates! In fact, The Laundry's power is based on areas lacking gates, as well as those they control. The laundry starts strong and gradually loses ground. Many of their abilities are very powerful, but only if they can deny the enemy gains.

Faction units:
6 Agents
2 Special Agent
1 OCCULUS
5 Residual Human Resources
3 PHANG
4 Superhero
1 Auditor
1 DSS

Faction Ability:
Cannot open gates. Gain 1 Power for each territory lacking a gate during Gather Power (Yog-Sotthoth counts). Do not gain power for uncontrolled gates. Gain only 1 power for controlled gates. If in sole control of a territory, may seal a gate for 3 power. Sealed gates may be reopened by other factions for 2 Power or as a free action with the sacrifice of 1 cultist so long as they have more total combat in the territory. Gain no doom for open or controlled gates, gain 2 doom for each sealed gate. May summon units in any territory where units are present lacking a Terror or Great Old One. Agents my not be captured, but if they are killed while holding an Occult Item, then the faction in control of the space (most total combat) during gather power gains 1 power/item so long as it remains. No Laundry units can kill or pain a Great Old One (secondary GOOs, ie King in Yellow, may be pained); instead for each combination of 2 total kills and/or pains, you may turn a kill inflicted by a GOO into a pain.

Units:

* Agents
*
* Cost: 1 Combat: 0*
*
* Gain 1 power per agent during gather power. Agents may be equipped with Occult Items, which give them special abilities and/or Combat power. If an agent has an equipped item, he cannot be captured. If Killed, and agent loses their Item in that area and another agent must move to that space to recover the item. Agents without items may not move into spaces with monsters, terrors, or Great Old Ones even when pained; if they have no choice but to do so they are instead killed.


* Special Agent
*
* Cost: 1 Combat: 1*
*
* Gain 1 power per agent during gather power. Special Agents act as agents with a permanently equipped Occult Item. They cannot lose this item. If killed, the killing player gains 1 power immediately. Special agents may gain combat for the duration of a particular encounter by Losing Control at a cost of -1 Elder Sign/Combat. At the end of a combat in which they lose control, a special agent is returned to the most secure location available (territory where the Laundry has the highest combat) as a free action and may not move for 1 round. Special agents may picked up a dropped item; if they do it is returned to the item pool.


* OCCULUS
*
* Cost: 3 Combat: 3
*
* Gain 1 power during gather power. OCCULUS may engage in combat with a specific enemy unit. Agents and Special Agents may join but Special Agents cannot Lose Control. For each added unit that joins OCCULUS , a unit may join the enemy unit. This ability cannot be used against GOOs. OCCULUS may pick up a dropped item, if they do it is returned to the item pool.


* Residual Human Resources
*
* Cost: Special Combat: 1*
*
* RHRs may not move. RHRs automatically engage in free combat with an enemy as soon as any cultists enter the same territory. RHR Combat is increased by 1 for every 2 combat (round down) possessed by other friendly units in the same territory during this free combat. RHRs may control gates, but may not seal them.


* PHANG
*
* Cost: 2 Combat: 2
*
* PHANG may consume enemy cultists for 1 Elder Sign as per GOO capture rules. This may be done only once per turn per PHANG. The owner of the consumed cultist immediately gains 1 power. If a PHANG does not consume a cultist, it consumes an agent instead at the end of the turn (no Elder Sign is gained) and becomes neutral (will consume a random cultist/agent each turn until killed). So long as their is a Neutral PHANG on the board, no new PHANG may be summoned.


* Superhero
*
* Cost: 2* Combat: 2
*
* Each superhero on the map reduces the cost of additional Superheros by 1. Each Superhero replaces a single agent in their location. If that agent had an Occult Item, that item is reassigned to a different agent lacking an Occult Item. If none are available, the item is returned to the item pool.


* Auditor
*
* Cost: 3 Combat: 3
*
* An auditor may exchange places with any number of units such that the total number of combat dice do not change (excluding special abilities. Occult Items are taken into account; agents count as 1 combat for this ability if their combat has not been modified). If this is done during combat, it must be done before rolling; the new units may then roll, including special abilities. For each kill scored in the subsequent combat, gain an elder sign.


* DSS
*
* Cost: 7* Combat: *
*
* When summoned, a DSS replaces a unit other than an RHR or PHANG in it's current location. That unit is removed from the game. When any unit other than an RHR is killed in a combat involving the DSS, an RHR may immediately be summoned in its place for 1 power or 1 Elder Sign (if there are no more available, one may be taken from a elsewhere on the board and moved here). If the DSS is pained, this summoning occurs after retreating. When DSS moves, it may move any number of RHR with it. DSS combat is equal to the number of RHR present x 2. DSS is considered a Terror.




Spell Books:

* Atrocity Archives
*
* Condition: Kill a monster or terror
* Effect: For every monster or terror you kill, draw an item from the supply and place it in the available pool. An item may be given to an agent for 1 power as a free action. Agents may carry only 1 item.

* SCORPION STARE
*
* Condition: Gain Control of a territory (no units other than your own) that was previously controlled occupied by one or more other players.
* Effect: In a territory where you have at least 1 unit and in which no enemy has a unit with more than 1 Combat, immediately kill all cultists (including High Priests) regardless of affiliation for 2 Power.

* Destiny Entanglement
*
* Condition: Have units in the same territory in which a combat occurs, but do not participate in combat during the entire turn.
* Effect: Select a player. During the doom phase, game elder signs equal to the number of doom that player gains. You may not select the same player multiple times.

* Creative Use of Manpower
*
* Condition: An agent is killed
* Whenever a unit other than the DSS or an RHR is killed, you may summon an RHR for 1 Elder Sign. If you would lose control of a gate as a result of this kill, the RHR instead takes control.

* True Name
*
* Condition: All Auditors are in play
* Once per game: Select a non-GOO/Terror unit. That unit becomes your unit until killed or pained.

* Kratzenberg Syndrome
*
* Condition: Summon DSS
* Once per turn: Select a single friendly unit other than an RHR, PHANG, or the DSS, and enemy non-GOO/Terror unit with equal combat. Roll Combat. If either unit rolls a kill, a single cultist in the same territory is killed (if no cultist is in the same territory, the enemy may choose). If the enemy unit rolls a kill, your unit is also killed. Gain one elder sign for each unit killed. Auditors may use their ability to avoid death after rolling; in that case the swapped units die instead. Units killed in this way may not be turned into RHR.



Items:
The Laundry gains access to a variety of items with special powers throughout the game. These can be used to enhance agents... but be careful , because if your agents lose them they give power to the enemy. Items are in a draw bag; only those that are drawn into the pool can be used.

Some items (most are unique, so you won't get the same set each game):
Occult Text - Gain 1 Combat
Unspeakable Text - Game 2 combat
Forbidden Text - 2 power to equip. Gain 2 combat. May pain GOO.
Benthic Treaty - Force a single non-GOO unit to leave an ocean space as though pained for 1 elder sign.
MAGINOT BLUE STARS - All enemy units in this space cannot move unit after the next gather power. The units either is item may not move either. costs 3 power.
OCCULUS PDA - Agent cannot be killed. Agent is pained and drops this item before moving.
Fuller Memorandum - Agent may swap places with the DSS (and his RHR).
Armageddon Score - Agent is removed from the game on use. Laundry player may move all enemy units 1 space.
Not a flying van - agent and up to four other units may move up to 3 spaces for 1 elder sign. May not move DSS or RHR.
Power armor - Absorbs a single pain or kill from a monster, then is discarded. May be equipped with a second item.
The Violin - Once per round - kill a single enemy non-GOO, or pain a GOO, for 2 Elder Signs. Roll a single die. On kill, the violin is removed from the game, but gain 1 Elder Sign.
Ancient Encyclical - Place on unit. Unit became immobile. If unit is still alive and unpained in 2 rounds, perform a free ritual of annihilation and remove this from the game.
EMOCUM - Move 2 spaces per move.
The Model - Reroll a single combat die roll. May be equipped with a second item.
Warding Seal - Must be equipped during the doom phase (at the end). Must be equipped on agent in a space without a gate. Sacrifice warding seal. If you still control the gate or sealed gate during the nect doom phase, it is destroyed (remove from the board, full price needed to reopen).
Fortification - This unit cannot move unless it pays 1 power to unequip this item. All enemy units in this territory have -1 combat for dice numbers only, up to a maximum of -4. If any kills are scored against you in this combat, remove this from the game and take 1 added kill.
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Nick Storm
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I'm assuming you posted it here for perusal and comments.

It's huge

Too huge

Too cumbersome, fiddle-y and it breaks the theme of the game...in a not-so-good way. CW is already getting bloated with 'tons o' game breakin' rules' with the different maps and goos. This faction would take the cake though. I do admire the effort!

While there have been a few vocal members aligned to desiring a human faction, there ought to be a poll set up on that. I really don't think more than 10-15% would want an 'investigator faction' or 'survivor humans'

just my guess.
 
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Simona Dostalova
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ppayes wrote:

While there have been a few vocal members aligned to desiring a human faction, there ought to be a poll set up on that. I really don't think more than 10-15% would want an 'investigator faction' or 'survivor humans'

just my guess.


I, for one, couldn't care less. I want more monsters! And HUGE Great Old Ones! And Terrors! And plastic tokens! And special rules for colored gates! And...
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Thomas Diener
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I do have to say :
An investigator faction based on -closing- Gates is bloody brilliant: Kudos for that!!
 
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PJ Cunningham
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I appreciate that you took a stab at statting up Charlie Stross' stuff.
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The War Chief
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BRING ME THE HEAD OF SETH NEMEC AND RIK FALCH!!!!!!
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Love it. Count me in that 10-15%.

Big fan of The Laundry Series.

I get most of the references, except for Superhero. Is this a reference to External Assets?

BTW, kudos on including the EMOCOMs. Shows you are a true fan of the series.

Have you playtested this faction yet?
 
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Bruce Walker
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This is in response to your question on the Onslaught Two Kickstarter.

"I did a Homebrew faction for the Laundry yesterday on BGG which I know will never appear in the game for obvious reasons. But one of the mechanics I thought up for it is interesting enough to ask around if it might be good for a real expansion faction: Gate Sealing. Under this mechanic, a faction would thrive on closing gates, rather than controlling them (I set it so the Laundry get power only for spaces without gates and reopening is cheaper), making them a resource denial type, which is something we don't really have currently. Such a faction would be very strong early and would taper off if they could not control the opposition. They could even work backward, losing spellbooks as they lose territory.
There is actually one group that fits this theme: The Elder Things (yes, I know they are already in as neutral monsters). The Elder Things have been on Earth the whole time (they were here before anyone else, even the Yithians), so they consider it their territory, and they could be very unhappy about all these guys invading just because the stars are right. They have gone to war before with the Yithians, the Flying Polyps, and the Star Spawn. In the game, the gate sealing could be seen as closing the doors on the interlopers so they will go away."

@Elliot Jenner I read the Laundry list, and although I thought there was issues with rest of the faction, primarily if I recall the number of rules and units seemed a bit large, and I am not sure about the idea of a human or good faction. I did like the idea of a faction that works on closing the gates, I like that rule, and considering the asymmetric play that might add something. There is one big issue I might see however, you will be directly opposed to every other faction on the board, beyond the existing opposition inherent in the game. The issue of gates and power late game could be balanced if you got power directly from destroying a gate as opposed to closing it and that power became active roughly turn 3 onwards, maybe the power (spell book) is earned when the number of gate free zones is less than the cost of the ritual of annihilation. Each destroyed gate is placed on your faction card and is handed back like a cultist and earns you 3,4,5 or 6 power depending on what the play test shows is reasonable (I would not give you power in the turn because if you may be able to roll the opposition in a turn, though that might be an interesting mechanic to have (for fast turnaround) depending on how the balance went.

As for the factions that could use this, I agree elder things are an option, as are the future insect form of the great race (maybe with some prehistoric Yithians as well). Infect you could have a mixed faction of these two, they did war in the past but both are more reasonable than the GOOs, they are both better equipped than the humans to combat the GOOs. Not sure what you could use as a GOOs.

You could work on an Alliance of Elder Things (as the neutral monster), 6 Insect form Great Race (They Disrupt the gates and earn power), 1or 2 Prehistoric Yithians, 1-2 Cthonians, Shudde M'elll as the GOO equivalent. They plan on surviving, closing the gates, and inheriting the world. You should have more than enough between those groups to get various spell powers. I will post some suggestions later.

I will get back to you if I work out a full faction list, other than that feel free to run with the idea.



 
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E J
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ppayes wrote:
I'm assuming you posted it here for perusal and comments.

It's huge

Too huge

Too cumbersome, fiddle-y and it breaks the theme of the game...in a not-so-good way. CW is already getting bloated with 'tons o' game breakin' rules' with the different maps and goos. This faction would take the cake though. I do admire the effort!

While there have been a few vocal members aligned to desiring a human faction, there ought to be a poll set up on that. I really don't think more than 10-15% would want an 'investigator faction' or 'survivor humans'

just my guess.


I realize the faction is rule bloated, but it was the only way I could come up with to make a faction that is both able to work it's area denial tactic effectively (In Theory - not playtested yet), Fit thematically, and be expressly inferior in combat to the other factions (both for thematic reasons and so they can be pushed back to prevent power starvation). I want the Laundry to be able to impede the other players so they are a legit threat and can win, but not completely shut them down, as this makes them no fun to play against and/or forces everyone else to abandon fighting each other to fight them, which is not only not fun for everyone but completely breaks theme.
 
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Claymore Nash
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Izgule wrote:

As for the factions that could use this, I agree elder things are an option, as are the future insect form of the great race (maybe with some prehistoric Yithians as well). Infect you could have a mixed faction of these two, they did war in the past but both are more reasonable than the GOOs, they are both better equipped than the humans to combat the GOOs. Not sure what you could use as a GOOs.

You could work on an Alliance of Elder Things (as the neutral monster), 6 Insect form Great Race (They Disrupt the gates and earn power), 1or 2 Prehistoric Yithians, 1-2 Cthonians, Shudde M'elll as the GOO equivalent. They plan on surviving, closing the gates, and inheriting the world. You should have more than enough between those groups to get various spell powers. I will post some suggestions later.



Personally I might use the gate closing mechanic for the Tsan-Chan Empire. I know they're another human faction but they fit in at least as well as the Tcho-Tcho. That and they're destined to rule the Earth from the year 5000 to 16000!

For units I'm thinking Dreamless Cultists x6, Kuen-Yuin High Priests x2, Tsan-Chan Transhuman x4, War Chariot x2, Mighty Child x2 and the Empress as their GOO. Not really sure what powers I'm gonna give them yet.
 
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Sean Petrick
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I've been thinking about this since you posted it, because I would very much love to see a Laundry faction work. I think a better strategy for the items is to replace them with spellbooks. Spellbooks could have two "modes," and ongoing and a 1 turn use (kind of like Nyarlathotep's shenanigans). You have your spellbooks with their abilities, but you can turn them over to get a certain power from them once per turn. When they're turned over you no longer get the ongoing effect until the end of the next doom phase.
 
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