I wanted to post a few effective combos that I’ve noticed in my games, as well as a couple I have imagined but haven’t yet made happen in a game. I always play with 4 or 6 randomly selected investigators, so these don’t often occur, since there are now 55 total investigators with all expansions. But when you do get a chance, these can be very effective.
Investigator + Investigator combos
Agatha Crane plus Marie Lambeau: You can pass Marie’s Personal Story on turn 1 by having Agatha move from Tokyo to space 20 and give Marie both of Agatha’s starting spells (Call the Storm and Instill Bravery). You can also have Marie move to Tokyo first, but then you won’t get the free action on turn 1. This gives the investigators 1 free extra action per turn for the rest of the game. Marie can then give back any spells that Agatha wants to keep. Most likely Marie will want to keep Voice of Ra, but the other two spells are probably better on Agatha.
Ashcan Pete plus Sister Mary: Almost everyone has heard of this combo. Sister Mary uses the Holy Water to bless herself, then Ashcan Pete takes the Holy Water out of the discard pile. Anybody who is in close distance of Ashcan Pete can be blessed, and it is usually worth the actions to do it.
Bob Jenkins plus any other asset-purchasing support: Bob’s passive gives him a 50% discount on 2 cost assets, a 33% discount on 3-cost assets, and a 25% discount on 4-cost assets. He gets no discount on 1-cost assets. Thus, Bob prefers to buy 2- and 3-cost assets to maximize his discount, and to leave the 1- and 4-cost assets to be picked up by another character. (You will have to buy at least one 4-cost asset to finish his Personal Story.) Note that he can only trade Items and Trinkets at a distance, so Allies and investigator-specific Services can’t be shipped across the map by his active ability.
(Jenny Barnes, Charlie Kane, George Barnaby, Rex Murphy, and Preston Fairmont are other good asset buying characters who pair well with Bob.)
Rex Murphy plus Daniela Reyes or Daisy Walker: To trigger Rex’s personal story, he needs to have 5 Clues when his Curse is discarded. Daniela can generate clues fast by getting free Resources when she performs an Acquire Assets action, and she can then turn those Resources into Clues with her active ability. Rex can also spend actions to gain Resources and then trade them to Daniela. This is easy since he starts on space 1 and she starts in adjacent San Francisco. If Rex’s Personal Story is solved in the first 3-5 turns of the game, it makes him a contender for the strongest Investigator in the game. If you have to rely on dice rolls and Reckonings to trigger his personal story, he’s only average. Daniela needs to spend 8 Resources to trigger her Personal Story, so this strategy also gets her started on her Personal Story.
If Rex can buy a Tome, Daisy Walker can safely cast Arcane Insight on him to give him clues from across the map. However, usually Daisy is selfish with her Clues, since she also wants to finish her Personal Story as soon as possible and get that Tome Artifact.
1 of (William Yorick or Roland Banks or Wilson Richards)
1 of (Gloria Goldberg or Ashcan Pete or Wendy Adams): William, Roland, and Wilson can dump Assets into the discard pile. These can them be picked up by the characters that can take items of their choice from the discard pile. (Tomes for Gloria, Items for Ashcan, and Trinkets for Wendy.) The Puzzle Box works particularly well with Wendy since her Observation is excellent and you can repeat this as many times as you can spare the actions. As mentioned above, the Holy Water is very nice with Ashcan.
Jacqueline Fine plus 1 of (Rita Young or Michael McGlen or George Barnaby or Amanda Sharpe): Rita and Amanda's Talent gaining abilities will trigger Jacqueline’s ability to look at the back of the Condition and gain a clue. It’s usually more useful to know what is on the back of the bad Conditions, but if you need free clues, those will also work.
Michael stealing Assets and getting Wanted conditions will also trigger Jacqueline’s ability.
And, when George’s Investment turns into a Funding Condition, Jacqueline can look at it and see if it is worth triggering for the effect, or if it should be used to cancel a Debt.
Joe Diamond plus Harvey Walters: on Turn 1, Joe can get a train ticket and then double move to Arkham, where Harvey can then improve Joe's skills twice as fast as most Investigators. You should use Joe’s passive ability to improve the skills he is already better than Harvey at, which are Observation and Influence. Joe can very quickly gain a lot of stat boosts. This will also put you on the path to finishing Harvey’s Personal Story.
This can also work with Lily Chen and Harvey, but she starts too far away from Harvey for this to be very useful in most games. But if she only needs one or two more improvements to finish her Personal Story, it might be worth trying to get them to the same place.
Dexter Drake plus Harvey Walters: If Harvey moves to the same space as Dexter and gives him the Ancient Tome, which Harvey starts with, Dexter can very quickly build up an impressive spellbook. Unfortunately, it will take 2-3 turns for these two to meet up and trade, likely in San Francisco or Buenos Aires. Often not worth the time.
Kate Winthrop plus Gloria Goldberg or Akachi Onyele: Since Gloria starts with the Find Gate spell, you will always know where to position Kate to block Gates from opening. Akachi can look at the top 2 Gates in the stack and decide which one to leave on top and which to send to the bottom. Akachi will cost you actions, while Gloria is free. However, you do get more chance of finding a Gate near to Kate’s location with Akachi.
To do this, it’s best to keep a couple travel tickets on Kate so she can move in 1 turn to where she needs to be for the next Mythos phase.
With all expansions, the main board has 18 gate locations: 9 named cities, plus the six Expedition spaces, plus spaces 3 (R’lyeh), 8 (Atlantis), and 13 (Hyperborea).
If Kate is on Buenos Aires with 2 ship tickets, she can reach Buenos Aires, San Francisco, Arkham, London, Rome, Sydney, R’lyeh (space 3), Atlantis (space 8), Antarctica, and the Amazon. These are 10 of the 18 spaces on which gates can open!
If she is on Istanbul with 1 train ticket and 1 ship ticket, she can reach Istanbul, Rome, London, Shanghai, Tokyo, Tunguska, and the Pyramids, which are 7 of the 18 spaces that gates can open up.
The Otherworld Codex or a randomly gained Find Gate spell will also give you the same effect.
Dexter Drake plus Diana Stanley: Dexter can teleport a Cultist onto a Gate near Diana, and Diana can then discard all the Monsters there. Diana can do this herself, but it usually takes several turns if she is doing it alone, and Doom might advance. Diana's Personal Story seems to be one of the harder ones to pass, unless you get lucky with Cultists spawning on high toughness monsters.
Investigator + Asset combos:
Rex Murphy plus the Witch Doctor: Discarding your Curse every turn while resting will allow Rex to very quickly pass his personal story and get rid of his Curse.
Agnes Baker or Marie Lambeau plus the Medical Journal or the Lodge Physician or the Witch Doctor: These Assets will help Agnes quickly gain back the health she loses by powering up her spells with her passive ability. They will also help Marie use Voice of Ra much more often, since you can use your extra action to rest and gain back the 1 health you spent casting Voice of Ra the previous turn.
Norman Withers or Harvey Walters plus the King James Bible or the Psychoanalyst: Norman can use Sanity plus a clue to discard monsters. Harvey needs to use Sanity to activate the Ancient Tome. Both can benefit from the extra Sanity while resting if they own these Assets. Also, any investigator using Tome Artifacts or Ritual spells can usually benefit from extra Sanity while resting.
Norman Withers plus the Tome of Secrets: This will allow Norman to discard monsters like crazy, as he does not need to spend any clues at all and will regain the Sanity for free during his Focus actions.
Skids O’Toole plus the Gambler’s Dice: Because Skids cannot roll 1s, he is more likely to have a pair of 2s, 3s, or 4s which he can reroll. This is even better if he passes his Personal Story since he then will only fail on 3s and 4s and you will usually have a pair.
Kate Winthrop plus the Otherworld Codex: See Kate’s investigator combo above.
Wendy Adams plus the Puzzle Box or the Ritual Candles: Wendy can repeatedly gain Artifacts or Spells. This can be useful, although it is somewhat time consuming. However, Artifacts are often worth the time investment.
Ashcan Pete plus the Alchemical Concoction, Kerosene, Fresh Fruit, Tear Gas, Holy Water or Dynamite: Ashcan can reuse all of these. Note that you will need to improve your Observation to 4 in order to get the Dynamite back.
Investigator + Spell combos:
Hank Samson plus any spellcaster with Flesh Ward: Even if Hank isn’t quite strong enough, Flesh Ward can usually prevent him from having to check Will against monsters. Hank only has 4 Sanity, so avoiding Will combat checks are usually a good idea.
Zoey Samaras plus any spellcaster with Instill Bravery: Instill Bravery makes it even more likely that Zoey will get the 2 bonus Strength dice in her combat encounters, though her starting Holy Cross + her base 4 Will is usually enough.
Father Mateo plus any spellcaster with Blessing of Isis: Father Mateo’s Lore is only 3, making it tough for him to reliably cast Blessing of Isis. However, with a Lore stat boost, or a Lore item, or a better spellcaster, you can throw Blessings to investigators all over the map and easily complete Father Mateo’s Personal Story. This works better with another character to cast the spell, because the spellcaster can be Blessed, but the target of the spell cannot be Blessed. Being Blessed obviously makes it easier to cast Blessing of Isis with a good result.
Kate Winthrop plus Find Gate: See Kate’s investigator combo above.
Are there other good combos you've come up with? I’d like to hear what synergies others have come up with in your games.
These are excellent summaries. Thanks for sharing.