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Physical Immunity and Resistance

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#1 CrusherJoe



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Posted 15 November 2012 - 07:51 AM

Finished my seventh solo game running four investigators.  I didn't want to have any hiccups when running the game for picky friends, especially when one is doomed to lose most of the time.  This forum has been invaluabe in answering questions or getting me to places where reference materials are.  The flowcharts were a BIG help. 

I have one question I haven't seen posed yet, and I hope I haven't missed it somewhere.  The base fight score of any investigator and/or ally: is it tagged as physical?

Michael McGlen and The Mountain happened upon a monster with physical immunity and all they had were physical damage related items. 

Now clearly, MM doesn't have magic fists.  Should he have his base fight score at all?  Would The Mountain add his +two?  Or is it an automatic loss?

It got me to thinking about physical resistance too, I don't halve the base fight score on an investigator, just the items, right?  How about an ally?  Would the Mountain only provide +1?

In the end, I let the boys have their base fight score and they lost, IIRC.  I did it mainly because MM runs around with one sanity all the time and I felt sorry for him.

OK, checked the rulebook one last time before posting, and in italics it calls out WEAPONS and SPELLS, not the base fight score.  So I guess I did it right.  Thoughts?  It seems weird, but I'll take it in a game that I've only won one time out of seven (which seems about right).  Do expansions change this?  I like the investigators having a fighting chance.

#2 Hugues



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Posted 15 November 2012 - 08:00 AM

 Bare hands are not subject to physical immunity/resistance. You did right :)

#3 Julia


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Posted 15 November 2012 - 08:57 AM

Hugues said:

 Bare hands are not subject to physical immunity/resistance. You did right :)

Yeah, with your bare hands you can do some incredible things in Arkham. Not to mention that the Martial Arts skill grants you a bonus you can use against the Colour out of Space (this list can be rather long ::laughter::)

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#4 Full Doom Track

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Posted 15 November 2012 - 02:38 PM

 Hello CrusherJoe,

Your interpretation of the rules is correct.  Investigators always are allowed to use their base fight score along with any modifiers (to their fight score) when fighting against physical/magic resistance/immunity.  The resistance and immunities basically limit the types of weapons and spells you are allowed to use.  This is why allies such as Tom Murphy are so amazing!  Also, I think you're doing a great service to yourself and your friends by playing the game through a few times before you introduce it to your friends.  It's great that you're getting all of your questions answered first so that you have a clear understanding of the rules before throwing them into the fire.


To answer your question of difficulty:

If you are still finding the base game challenging, there is no need to add any expansions (unless you're a glutton for punishment).  As you continue to play through the game, you will (eventually) find a strategy that works and you'll win many more times than 1 out of 7.  Once you find yourself winning more games than you loose (and you will, eventually), then it's time to add an expansion or two.  I personally limit myself to 1-2 expansions per game because I feel you have the opportunity to experience the flavor of each expansion that way.  You also don't have to deal with a whole mess of rules that have odd interactions when you throw all the expansions into one pile and try to play a game (although this can be fun too).

I'm also not sure if you already know this but the base game gets significantly easier, if you can get a few gates 2-3 sealed in certain locations early on (first 4-5 turns).  Floating around on the internet somewhere is a list of the probability of gates opening with certain mythos cards.  If you're faced with a choice as to which gate to close, always follow this priority and you'll find that the ancient one will be opening gates on sealed locations far more often.  Also if you grab clue tokens from these locations first you eliminate the possibility of a gate opening on a pile of clues and 'eating' them.  This will allow you to collect more clue tokens over the course of the game (which means more seals).

Seal Priority & Clue Token Priority:

1st: Woods, Independence Square, Unvisited Isle, Witch House

2nd: Black Cave, Graveyard, Unnamable

3rd: Silver Twilight Lodge, Historical Society, Hibb's Roadhouse, Science Building

Of course, there are always exceptions to this set of priorities but if you follow this as a general guideline I think you will find a lot of success.  You also could already be doing this and just didn't mention it.


Feel free to ask any other questions and I hope this helps!

#5 Steve-O



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Posted 17 November 2012 - 08:56 AM

Julia said:


Yeah, with your bare hands you can do some incredible things in Arkham. Not to mention that the Martial Arts skill grants you a bonus you can use against the Colour out of Space (this list can be rather long ::laughter::)

Magic is a strange thing.  Especially strange in Arkham. =)

My preferred explanation is that living tissue has an effect on these beings which unliving materials like wood and metal don't.  So that fact that your hands are part of your living body gets you around their resistances.

Since you mention martial arts, another possible explanation is "chi" (or whatever you want to call it.)  Martial Arts mythology is full of people who can do incredible things by focusing their life essence in quasi-magical ways.  Perhaps everyone can direct this force to a small extent (so punching a demon with your hand still has some small effect where a bullet would not.)  Martial artists just have significantly greater control.

#6 subochre



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Posted 17 November 2012 - 08:02 PM

The way I understand the Fight stat is just that it can be used for all sorts of (intentionally vague) things, for example, dodging whatever objects a ghost is throwing at you to interrupt its exorcism, whereas the +4 from a .45 Automatic can pretty much only be used for shooting.  (A shotgun, on the other hand… )

#7 Tibs



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Posted 18 November 2012 - 03:48 AM

subochre said:

(A shotgun, on the other hand… )

Well, a single bullet may not be able to damage a Formless Spawn, but a spray of bullets is enough to rip chunks of the jelly off the creature's body! And I don't care what dimension you're from… if your body has been separated into pieces… you're dead.

#8 CrusherJoe



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Posted 18 November 2012 - 05:28 PM

Thank you for your responses.  Despite the complexity of the rules, it's nice to know that sometimes going with your gut yields the right result.


I'm looking forward to reinstituting game night in my life, and getting a group who will enjoy AH.  I have no worries about it getting too easy for us, and my first expansion will probably be DH. 



#9 Jake yet again

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Posted 24 November 2012 - 09:51 PM

Fight represents you general aggression. You might not be able to punch that formless spawn, but you could trap it quick-drying cement. Your bullets might go through that Ghost, but destorying the funeral urn in which its ashes are contained might return it to the grave.

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#10 Walk



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Posted 27 November 2012 - 05:17 AM

My preferred explanation for base Fight bypassing Physical Resistance and Immunity is that, during what research on the Mythos the investigators conducted before the game, they happened upon a basic offensive spell which is channelled through the body and thus can be made more powerful if the body is able to endure more strain (Fight here being taken to represent strength, as is often the case in-game).  This spell can also be used to add to the power of other combat spells or used at the same time as normal weapons.  It's not all that strong, however, so using it alone is no more effective than using your bare hands, and, though it doesn't actually take any hands to use, it still requires a certain amount of concentration and prevents you from putting your all into your physical attacks (thus, you cannot both use the spell and enhance your physical attacks with your Fight as normal).  A similar explanation can account for the use of Fight to close Gates. 

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