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Subject: Fun game against Hastur rss

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CC Nephilim
United States
New Mexico
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Last night, we played a game against Hastur.

There were six of us, and two were new to the game. We had the Soldier, the Entertainer, the Gangster, the Athlete, and two custom investigators posted by other fans: Reanna Carpenter and Sherlock Holmes. We were playing with four expansions: Curse of the Dark Pharaoh, The Dunwich Horror, and two homebrew expansions Arkham Nights (which adds encounters to street locations in Arkham) and Arkham Book Club (which turns tome cards into cool little booklets that give the spellcaster types a lot more fun things to do and make tomes less useless).

Hastur's special ability is that it takes 8 clue tokens to seal gates. With six players playing, clue tokens get scarce, because they are spread out among all the players, so we were worried about being able to seal gates. So, we resolved to try to help Sherlock Holmes collect clue tokens, because his special ability is to draw an extra clue token when he collects clue tokens from a location.

Due to the luck of the draw, we started the game with four tomes, but two of them went to the people with the lowest Sanity: the soldier and the gangster, so it took a while to get them to someone who could use them.

The game started off liesurely with the obligatory start-of-game shopping trips. The second Mythos card drawn called for a monster surge in the same location as the first Mythos card AND caused all the monsters there to be returned to the cup, so two turns in, we had a single gate and no monsters.

We spent the next several turns collecting clues. Some more gates opened, and some unfortunate rolling left three of us low on sanity. And just as one of us got enough clues to seal a gate, a rumor showed up. The rumor was a killer: it's the one where you place three sanity tokens on the card for every player (eighteen to start), and add one for each player (+6) each turn. Players may remove tokens on a one-for-one basis if they move to that certain location, but if there is ever six tokens per person (i.e., three turns later if no one does anything), THREE MYTHOS CARDS are drawn immediately and put into play.

There was literally no way we could do it. We had no money, two of us only had 4 maximum sanity, and we had taken some pretty heavy sanity loss. We didn't have the speed to move quickly enough to the location, nor did we have the money to make trips to the Asylum to replenish Sanity to donate.

So we resigned ourselves to the three cards, but the problem is that if six gates ever open when you're playing with six players, Hastur shows up! Glancing over the map, we saw we had five gates already in play, and we were facing a three-gate possibility in three turns.

What ensued was a mad dash through the gates. A Find Gate narrowly saved us from Hastur's awakening before the rumor took effect, but it was looking like it would be too little, too late: when the rumor was going to take effect, we had four gates open and one gate sealed.

We drew our Mythos cards from the rumor effect. The first was blocked by the gate seal. The second opened gate number five. And the last was a monster surge. We narrowly avoided the end.

The following turn, we closed a gate and had another monster surge, which drove up the terror level, but pushed back Hastur's imminent awakening to give us some breathing room.

The draw of the cards went well for a while after that, but we were rolling very poorly that night - one of us rolled eight dice, burning all his clue tokens, trying to get a normal success against a monster and still failed. Another spellcaster type acquired several spells, but they all seemed largely useless for the situations at hand.

Then, one bad Mythos card not only opened a gate in Dunwich with a Cthonian sitting on it, but it also drove a pack of creatures through vortexes, summoning forth the Dunwich Horror.

By now, the soldier (one of our new players) had gotten the jones for slaying monsters, and started mopping up the streets as we tried to collect clues and go through gates. He headed for Dunwich, went two combat rounds with the Dunwich Horror and actually won, by the barest skin of his teeth. Luckily, he had a skill that let him spend clue tokens for Fight successes, or else he would have had no chance.

The eight clue token limit prevented most of us from sealing gates, so we ended up just going around closing gates as they appeared. A Mythos headline indicated that the townsfolk held a lynching, and the luck of the draw indicated that the fine townsfolk of Arkham lynched a dog.

We were getting close to winning, with four gates sealed, and two characters with more than eight clue tokens (Holmes and Carpenter), when the environment card came out which prevents gates from being sealed!

That environment card stayed out for the remainder of the game, but it didn't matter, because we were able to, with a single coordinated push, rush through the remaining four gates in near-parallel. Would our luck hold out and keep gates from opening until we could close off the final gates and win?

A well-timed Bless spell by our spellcaster made all the difference; the last gate was closed with a high roll of four, and Hastur was beaten back until the next time he stirs.

At the end of the game, four hours later, we had ten unspent gate trophies, the doom track was only at seven (two elder signs and Marie Lambeau's ability), 28 unspent clue tokens, and the terror track was at two. The Soldier had almost 20 toughness of monster trophies he hadn't spent, and we had almost $20 among us. By the end of the game, we were doing rather well.

But it was touch and go there for a while. If those three Mythos card draws had been any less lucky, we would have all been devoured, I think, because people were low on Sanity and several of us had jacked up our Lore against Luck. Hastur eats Sanity if you fail Luck, so it would have been bad if he had showed.

As a side note, all the homebrew additions worked well. The two characters really played well without being unbalanced, the street location encounters gave the soldier something to do other than sit on his thumbs in the street during the Encounters phases, and the Tomes added some fun and excitement to the typically dreary life of a spellcaster character. All in all, a fun game, even for the newcomers.
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David Aubert
France
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Hi

where did you find the homebrew expansion ?
 
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CC Nephilim
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New Mexico
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They're at the Arkham Investigations site:

http://homepage.mac.com/nephilim/arkham_investigations
 
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