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oldtimer

Campaign results *spoilers

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I finished my first solo campaign run of night of the zealot and a side quest of curse of Rougaru.  And at the end of the book it says to share your results so here I am.

I don't see anyway to hide spoilers in this editor so don't read this if you don't want any spoilers.

I played Jenny Barnes from the dunwich expo (built to the specs in the deck lists pdf) thinking she would be good solo. The game was on easy mode for the bag config.

Night of the Zealot was the campaign.

3 of 4 of the missions I failed with me being defeated and getting the first result. I had about 3 monsters on me on the first mission and had nothing to evade them all. In the next mission the roguaru wound up showing up and I thought It was impossible to fight since if I do 1 damage he bolts to the other side of the map and there is not enough time or clues to deal with him. Solo is even harder because in multi player you can do more damage before he bolts and you can split up so you can corner him. I attacked twice failed each time and he got his retaliation then attacked after my turn was up and killed me on the first attempt to fight him. Then on the second mission I ran out of time/actions and only found one named cultist. I felt 6 to win was way above possible since it only counts the named cultists and not the normal ones. The clue cost to pull them was just so time consuming on top of all the other cards you are dealing with. The last mission I started with doom already on the agenda due to failing the 2nd mission so it was extra difficult since I lost 2 whole rounds to that. Died to monsters before getting to the next act card.

I ended up with the following:

Trama 1 physical, 2 mental

Lita was in my deck, my house was still standing, Ghoul priest is still alive (never killed him and he showed up every mission), Rougaru continues to haunt the bayou, Arkham succumbed to the umordhoth's terrible vengence.

Cultists who got away was 4 of em. And Jenny was killed upon the conclusion.

R.I.P.

The game felt like a snowball, or like drowning in a constant stream of monsters and bad events. Even tho I would get the ally that gives me another action each turn out early some games, I could never get a leg up. I spent my XP upgrading and only spent 1 xp to go on the rogarou quest. I swapped out cards that were for multiplayer (odd she has those as a char who should be the best for solo) for a baseball bat and some blue cards.

The roulette card that lets you double the difficulty of a test and resolve twice seemed pretty difficult to use even on easy since the number can increase to insane high numbers and make it impossible to pass. It also seems like you cant just play it for the ? symbol and not use the power, ie, choose not to double a test but rather just get the ? increase.

I was shocked at how unlucky I was and how badly I failed at every mission even on the lowest difficulty. I play very carefully and look up rules if I have any issues and as far as I know I'm playing correctly.  I feel easy mode should pad the doom track so you can get more time to get things done.

Maybe Jenny just sucks or solo mode is more unforgiving. I wound up with a basic weakness that made her loose her text on her hero card and found her major weakness to be pretty brutal as it soaks up a ton of actions and time to deal with it.

I've played the gathering many times with all the heroes from the core game and only won one game out of 5. 2 of those games were on standard then I switched to easy to try and make things better.

I'm starting to consider making my own mode, Very Easy. Maybe one extra action per turn, or a bonus to how much doom each card requires before it advances. Boosting XP is not as helpful IMO because a new player may not know the best cards to get or maybe they are the type of player like me who just likes to pick things that they think are cool or thematic and are not power gamer/mathematicians. Since I feel like its kinda lame to spoil the first exposure to the story and go through a land slide fail along the way on your first game. Then after you know the plot and more about where things are etc to use that info to do better. I find that really cheesy if that's the way its intended to go down. I know this is a arkham game and it should be hard but I think it would be more rewarding if it were more forgiving and then on subsequent plays with your learned knowledge of the plot start to the ramp up in difficulty.

Also what is the point of the campaign results with out a website where you can post them to and find out some of the cool plot ends for things like writing down that the rogaoru continues to haunt the bayou or that green potion card... And to compare your results with other players.

Even tho I'm ranting, I like this game a lot and I'll be playing more games and updating this post. Maybe the RNG will go easy on my next time! :)

Edited by oldtimer

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The game feels hard at first, i get that. Once you learn to manage your turns you'll have a much better fight against the scenarios. Also, i find it a much better play with 2 players, it just feels more natural, more smooth, 6 actions before the doom is added, you feel like you're getting more done, but effectively you're not, since the game scales, but having the other player to fill the gaps of the first is very good for sanity's sake. Leo de Luca, he's good, yeah, but 1 extra action for 6 resources and the ally slot? With Jenny, it's manageable since she's getting an extra resource per turn so after 3 turns you've paid half his cost back already, but there are better options for her, since she has a 3 across the board, getting a +1 in the ally slot is very helpful. Beat Cop for more firepower, Dr. Milan for clue gathering, or Sylvester for added evasion. I mean, if you're playing Leo for an extra action per turn, but fail to investigate, or evade, or fight once per turn, he's basically useless.. When you upgrade, paying 2 for a pair of Hired Muscle is great for Jenny, she's fine with the per turn cost so that's negligible, can damage soak on them, and gets the extra strength for combat. You can even go with an Upgraded Sylvester, though she's not going to really benefit from the +1 Willpower as much as other investigators will.

 

don't put too much stock in Leo, he's a real tempo killer, even if you get him out in the first few turns, he's also going to take up one of the most important slots.

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Jenny is my favorite investigator in the Arkham Files, and I've done a lot of testing with her. I tend to Find Leo is only really a powerhouse in a Deck that doesn't really use resources as a strength. Wendy and Ashcan Pete Decks I've built love him, because they don't require many Actions to set up, and generally are getting by without having to spend a ton of resources on doing what they want to do. So the 5 or 6 resources really isn't much of a cost to them, and the extra action becomes more flexible, and the initial tempo loss is mitigated.

Jenny decks tend to need setup actions to get their talents, weapons, and allies into play, and they usually are attempting to leverage Resources as power. The more AP and resources it takes to set up your character, the less appealing Leo becomes. I've found the the Seeker Ally, Dr. Milan Christopher is a better card for Jenny then Leo is generally. The extra stat boost to Investigation makes her a decent clue finder, and with support from a flashlight or magnifying glass she does an extremely competent job. Add to this that you are functionally getting the extra ap or more in compression because every time you successfully investigate you get the effects of an action spent on gaining a resource, which then adds to the goal of using resources as power. Investigate successfully 3 times, and it's like you also took 3 actions gaining resources.

It's for that reason I've found Double or Nothing a pretty much auto include for Jenny. When I first saw the card I didn't like it at all. I was still looking at the game through a core set investigator lens, or at least a Wendy and Daisy lens. I thought why on earth would I want to double the difficulty of something when it's already hard enough to pass the check without doubling it? The reason I don't tend to like it in other decks is that most investigators tend to be caught in an upper limit of what they can realistically get their stat up to for any one check. The Talent Asset cards are VERY expensive in Actions and Resources to use, and in many cases they don't make a lot of sense to include for anything other than an absolute emergency must pass test for other investigators.

Many Jenny builds leverage them very well because she actually can get enough money to use them repeatedly. And with a balanced stat line it usually doesn't take many resources to get up to satisfactory levels in any area. And once you have enough money to use them repeatedly then double or nothing becomes a very attractive card because it again gets you multiple actions compressed into one. If you are running out of time and need multiple clues in once action, using double or nothing and then using Arcane Studies to get your Investigation higher than even Daisy's can be a good play. It's even better with monsters. If Jenny really needs to do spike damage, combining Backstab attack with a Double or Nothing can kill or severely dent any particular monster you want in the ground. It is certainly a gamble though, as if you can spend too much, or pull the tentacle, but I've found my games run better with it in the deck as opposed to it.

And of course once you combo it with Sure Gamble...

 

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I started a new run, this time with two investigators.

Zoey and Pete, and so far they feel much better. I also am testing the game with a single extra doom for each agenda (if the card would advance with 3 doom I make it 4). I won the gathering and then spent about half my xp upgrading and saved 3 xp to go on carnevale of horrors side quest. 

I won the side quest but only got 3 xp and a mask and Zoey died and took a physical trauma. I thought it was odd that there was no text outcome for if you have one of the rescued npcs under the agenda deck and 2 under the act deck. There are only outcomes for none under act and 1 or more under agenda or none under agenda and 1 or more under act. So its lame its all or nothing.  This quest was cool and felt really hard. The boss seemed a bit impossible to fight at 8x2 hp and I had to escape in the boat with only one investigator left since zoey died. With out the padding to doom I would have failed this one definitely. It was a fun quest tho.

The padding did make the gathering a bit on the easy side, but its the easiest of all the stages it seems.

Well see how the padding helps in the next part of the main quest.

I'll edit this post when I play it.

I find pete and duke a really good combo. And I hope I'm playing this right but the way I read duke it looks like you can use him to investigate and then start with base 4 for the stat then things like magnifying glass adds +1 on top of it right since it says "you" on the duke card. Also the Sylvester guy is really good and can get rid of horror for free. Pete feels like a tank and I think hes on of the best I've used so far. Zoey with a .45 seems really good. She also gets a lot of resources with her power. They both have high willpower so they are pretty good at treachery cards they draw.

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