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Subject: Game 2: In which I single-handedly doom mankind rss

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Nick Croker
United Kingdom
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Yes, for my second ever game of "Arkham Horror" (base game only, no expansions), I once again played solo with two investigators - Mandy Thompson and Joe Diamond - and faced off against Azathoth.

This was a game that moved from ecstasy to despair with depressing speed. Despite starting relatively brightly, my investigators were soon up against 4 open gates and had also suffered two monster surges. Having really worked at it, however, I managed to get to a situation where Joe had become the Deputy of Arkham ("taste my bullets of law and order, Elder Thing!") and 3 out of the 4 gates had been closed and sealed - which had the beneficial side-effect of clearing an awful lot of monsters from the board.

Surely, I reasoned, I couldn't be far from my first victory?

Well, actually...yes. It turned out I could be as far away from victory as possible.

It's hard to remember when things started to go completely wrong, but scoring two hard-fought victories over Elder Things only for the Miskatonic Expedition to return and reanimate them sticks out as a point at which a condensed howl of expletives left my mouth. A slew of gates opening and a lack of clue tokens (or ways to obtain them) didn't help, either!

Things went even further downhill shortly thereafter, when I drew "The Stars are Right" Rumor and watched helplessly as the Doom Track started sky-rocketing towards the maximum. Having no allies made it rather difficult to meet the "pass" conditions for that card. Mandy Thompson did get an ally (Ruby Standish) but by this time Arkham had very strong monsters at most of the board's key choke points, and she was in no shape to fight her way through.

However, I did have one chance - thanks to the movement of the monsters at the end of the previous Mythos phase, Mandy had a clear run to get to one gate, and (even better!) had an Elder Sign. Joe, being the Deputy of Arkham, still held the patrol wagon and thus could go straight to one of the other open gates. He also held 5 clue tokens.

The terror track had hit 4, but the Earth teetered on the brink of annihilation as the doom counter stood at 13.

Weighing up my possible options (essentially none, unless you include "weeping hopelessly and shouting 'Abandon All Hope!'"), it was apparent that I'd have to go for the big gamble, and sent both investigators through a gate each, reasoning that I'd just have to gamble big and try to seal both gates and pull arguably the most unlikely victory ever from the jaws of defeat. With that, off Mandy went to Yuggoth, and off Joe went to the Great Hall of Celeano.

I can't recall what their encounters were now, but I remember thinking that Fate had smiled on them and given them both something extremely manageable. The Mythos phase passed off without incident (the location at which a gate was due to appear was already sealed), and all I had to do was not roll a 1 or a 2 for the next two turns. Easy!

I casually picked up the die, gave it a thorough shake, and let it roll across the board. As it bounced around, I realised I'd been playing for about 4 hours (hey, I'm still learning), and mused on how cosmically unjust it would be to lose the game on one roll of a die, only minutes from triumph.

The die stopped moving. I stared at it. I kept staring at it for - ooooh - about 30 seconds. In all that time, I realised that my eyes hadn't deceived me, and that I had in fact rolled a one. With that, I wearily added one last doom token to the doom track, and waited for Azathoth to stir from his slumber.

So, yeah, that agonised screaming of billions of voices you can hear, the scent of burning flesh you can smell on the wind, and the flames you can see tearing through everything?

That was my fault. Sorry soblue

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Fred Cromer
United States
Georgia
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I feel your pain. Those same voices have come and gone in my own Arkham Horror misadventures. I have lost my way and now travel down the darkess path to Arkham asylum. The insanity of it all. I just saw a big black bat from my cell room. Its coming for me. I just know it.

On a brighter note. I finally won at "A Touch of Evil". I was 0-5 until today. I finally killed the vampire. It took everything I had plus some Elders. Even the scarlet shadow, a highwayman was needed.

Victory was my cry.

It didn`t last long. The spectral horseman reared his ugly no head of a body and the chase was on.

Good gaming to all.

Freebird out.
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Jan
Belgium
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Great report but be sure we will find you!
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Bern Harkins
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Nick Croker wrote:


So, yeah, that agonised screaming of billions of voices you can hear, the scent of burning flesh you can smell on the wind, and the flames you can see tearing through everything?

That was my fault. Sorry soblue



No worries! Azothoth, the mad demon sultan who sleeps at the center of the universe, is dreaming everything... humanity, Cthulhu, Duke the dog, Hastur, the Andromeda galaxy... all just Azzie's dreams. That's why you don't get a chance to do final combat; he awakes, and you become a quickly fading image he can't quite recall...

All the screaming/burning/flaming? That was some fellow in Indonesia losing to Cthugha, from the Innsmouth expansion...

Great report, thanks for sharing!
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