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Subject: Ancient One Battle (specifically Ithaqua) questions rss

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Trevor Schadt
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Glenshaw
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Four of us were in a game last night where the Ancient One was Ithaqua, and I was playing Finn Edwards (the Bootlegger, from the Innsmouth expansion).

One of Finn's Special Abilities is: "Holdout - Any Phase: Finn never has to discard items or lose money, even when he is knocked unconscious or driven insane. He must still pay costs as usual."

Ithaqua's Start of Battle text is "Start of Battle: Investigators must roll a die for every item they have, discarding the item on a failure."

In addition, I had a Healing Stone, which states: "Discard Healing Stone if the Ancient One awakens."

Here are my questions:
1) Does the AO's "Start of Battle" happen before or after the investigators "meet up" to do battle? In other words, could the other investigators have legally given me all their items so my Holdout ability would keep them safe through Ithaqua's Start of Battle ability? (We ruled that they could, in fact, give me all their items before having to roll for them, then get them back before rolling combat rolls. As a result, we beat Ithaqua in the fourth round. Thus the concern.)

2) Should I have kept the Healing Stone (due to Holdout) even though the card specifically states to discard it when the AO awakens? (We ruled that I could keep the Stone, and ended up giving it to the ex-con who was casting Heal every turn, to offset the SAN loss.)

I couldn't find anything to answer either of these questions in FFG's FAQ. Thanks!
 
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Russell InGA
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Johns Creek
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The following represents merely my feelings on the subject...

Here is a good example of a game getting away from its creator!

I would say that your character is allowed to keep any items (see below also) that he has, but the other characters have to roll for theirs.

I would read the Healing Stone as "This item ceases to function when the old one awakens. Place this (but don't discard it) on top of the item discard pile."
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brian
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I'd agree with Russell. Finn should get to keep all of his stuff with Ithaqua.

However, the Healing Stone (and other similar items) are meant to stop working for the final battle. I would say that Finn's special ability does not circumvent this otherwise the Final Battle will be much easier.
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Paul Leigh
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Regarding Finn's ability to not have to lose or discard items, this is fine for anything he is carrying at the time of Ithaqua's arrival.

I would say that swapping items from other investigators in the first upkeep phase of the big battle would be after Ithaqua has already used his start of battle ability, therefore too late.

If other investigators passed a few crucial items to Finn before Ithaqua arrives and the game end final battle starts, that would be fine. Finn could just give them back once the battle gets underway.

These sort of rule interpretations might seem a bit gamey, but heck, there needs to be a ruling one way or the other.
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Tibs
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I absolutely agree with Brian. Finn's ability seems to break Ithaqua's "thing" that makes final combat challenging, but the Healing Stone has to go. The text was added to Healing Stone because if you had McGlen or Vincent Lee, you could just pass that character the stone and he would never die in combat against Ithaqua.

Similar issues arise with Yig and Hastur. Preventing 2 health points when the boss can never do more than 2 (without expansion supplements) is a real problem.
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Brian Mc Cabe
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There are those who look at things the way they are and ask why . . . I dream of things that never were and ask why not
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I agree with Paul. If you anticipate the awakening and give everything to Finn, no problem. Awakening is immediate, as would be the resolution of the FB condition.

My 2c

Awakening
FB condition resolution
Upkeep
Combat
AO attack
Repeat 3-5

Healing Stone and other such items to be discarded upon FB start ceasing to function sounds like a good interpretation.

Brian
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