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Cycle V: The Dream-Eaters

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1 hour ago, CaffeineAddict said:

My copy was waiting when I got home last night. I'll be trying it out this weekend.

Getting mine today but not sure when I’ll get to play... haven’t even cracked open my return to carcosa yet. Can’t wait though.

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Snagged my copy today. I'll be re-playing the full cycle of The Circle Undone, and at least once more through The Path to Carcosa before I get to the Dream-Eater scenarios. But my daughter's William Yorick is hankering for those cats!

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Picked mine up and put together a Tony Morgan deck. His 5 Sanity is a real pain, but the guy is never short for money and the bonus cards for having it- especially if you pair him with Dario and Well Connected.

I ran him through a couple of scenarios with a Guardian secondary ability (for events and skills anyway) - and If It Bleeds and On The Hunt are tailor-made for him.

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My copy came last Monday (it was supposed to arrive last Sat, but was put on the wrong truck). We played  through the first scenario with Patrice and Luke and I was really surprised how well Patrice played. It is such a different mind set to play her, but she was super effective and Quantum Flux is amazing with her.  As is her Elder Sign ability. She had absolutely no trouble running out of her deck, because both  QF’s came up and the Elder sign was drawn twice. Not that that is always a given, but you will find cards you need. Drawing Thin helped generate necessary resources and she actually got a decent amount of assets into play. Not bad when all was said and done, and this was her at 0 level. 

Edited by Mimi61

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I'm about 2/3 of the way through Forgotten Age, running Luke - my friend is running Mandy. Absolutely loving it - Mandy is very strong and Luke can pull off some ridiculous saves. I initially played Tommy and hated it so we restarted. Not sure whether that's just because TFA is very hostile towards the Guardian class in general. 

I'm looking forward to trying out Tony Morgan and Patrice Hathaway next. 

If anyone's curious about Luke I have some hands-on experience to offer. 

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I am incidentally about to start City of Archives, which switches off both Mandy and Luke's entire gimmick. The only means I have of entering my demiplane is my weakness... 

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I am actually curious about how Luke's weakness feels in play. It seems somewhat mild to me because it allows one the option to just play assets, deal with threat area treacheries, draw cards, or gain resources and then take a free teleport at the end of the phase (and two horror, I guess). But I imagine I could be off base.

Otherwise, just one question comes to mind: is the ability to remotely evade or attack the Harbinger as powerful and satisfying as I think it is?

Thanks for sharing your thoughts.

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8 hours ago, Soakman said:

 

I’m curious what you took for fighting if anything. Wondering if a fireaxe is worth it.

 

I decided to capitalize on her Will instead and gave her two attack spells Shriveling and Wither. Also, Sixth Sense and Mists of R’lyeh. I figured to put down Sixth Sense for sure and either a fight or evade spell whichever came first for the second arcane slot. Wither came up first. At the beginning I was spending her resources pretty fast as assets came into play and fortunately Drawing Thin came up pretty quick.  I did have plenty of resources by the end, so Fire Axe did come to mind. I gave her a lot of assets, some doubled so I could get them down. The extras became skill test fodder. 
She had Holy Rosary in her opening hand, so her will started at 5 for the scenario. And Peter showed up a few rounds later making her 6. So she held her own while fighting and investigating. Quantum flux was huge and her 42 card deck was great. She never ran out and plenty of events and skills came up again. Backpack was a disappointment and  I may reduce some of the doubled assets, but I wanted cards I could toss when I upgrade.  She really was fun, and the kitties haven’t even come out to play yet! It was a “test play” since my hubby hasn’t decided who is going to be his dreamer. We really aren’t going to start this campaign until a few Mythos packs have released. I still have my Mandy to try and then we Return to Carcosa. 
 I actually chortled when Patrice got her random basic weakness. Amnesia. I ask you.

Edited by Mimi61

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3 hours ago, Spritz Tea said:

I am actually curious about how Luke's weakness feels in play. It seems somewhat mild to me because it allows one the option to just play assets, deal with threat area treacheries, draw cards, or gain resources and then take a free teleport at the end of the phase (and two horror, I guess). But I imagine I could be off base.

Otherwise, just one question comes to mind: is the ability to remotely evade or attack the Harbinger as powerful and satisfying as I think it is?

Thanks for sharing your thoughts.

So Luke's weakness was really cool. Sometimes, as you say, it was quite mild, though it was still annoying, being forced to take a turn where I sat on my own solipsistically drawing cards and setting up; that plus the two horror meant it rarely felt toothless. Other times, however, it really ruined our plans - I left Mandy with two burly snake people while I was sucked into my demiplane one time, and another time I missed out on a big opportunity for Crack the Case and HEFC payout. The ability to investigate the location to flip it to the good side was rarely a viable solution (I only pulled it off once), but I was using Rite of Seeking - a Sixth Sense build would have a far better time. I did end up with a constant intellect of 6, so that might also be an option on a lower difficulty. On at least 2 occasions it ended up being advantageous - it pulled me out of the fire and saved me from possible trauma one time, another time I was going to be spending the turn doing nothing but drawing and playing cards anyway, and the free travel to a location across the map was worth more than the Deny Existence to ignore the horror. It also prevents enemy spawns which saved us an encounter card or two. 

 

As for the Harbinger, I wrecked it hard. Early on, the Gate Box saves you from so many bad situations - having Hunter enemies come to you then teleporting away before they hit you is endlessly satisfying. Using Evade and Attack events from the Dream-Gate is great, and Knowledge is Power is, as predicted, a mandatory never-get-rid-of-it card. I proxied Ethereal Form and it was predictably amazing, evade an enemy at an adjacent location while disengaging from all enemies at your current location. And Storm of Spirits and the upgrade are unsurprisingly mandatory for Luke. Spoilers for Shattered Aeons:

At one point I hit Alejandro, Ictacha, a 3-health brotherhood cultist and a 5-health serpent with Storm of Spirits (3), doing 12 damage from range, then spent the next 2 turns hopping in and out of my gate to mop up the stragglers with Shrivelling and no counterattacks.

It was satisfying for sure, and pretty great, but the ability to teleport away at the last second was the really satisfying play.

Also, Crack the Case was nuts on Luke, and Mandy gave me a turn-one double No Stone Unturned (5) almost every scenario, allowing me to set up the Hawk-Eye Folding Camera turn one. That really solved the problems with the card, as I needed to escort her anyway so I charged up the cameras quickly since she had no fighting ability to speak of and had Narcolepsy as her weakness, and the additional sanity saved me a trauma from shrivelling backlash. Next time I try Luke I'm going for a more token-hunting build with Sixth Sense, as I am now thoroughly sick of Rite of Seeking. 

Spoilers for Epilogue:

We ended up going our own way and doing the epilogue scenario. We had a good run of luck, with only hitting half the treacheries in the exploration deck, and we utterly steamrolled the scenario. I felt sorry for Yig as we killed him in 2 turns before the Harbinger even came close to us, with a single point of doom on Agenda 2a. The Mandy/Luke dream team dominated that scenario more than any other scenario I've ever played...

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I actually hadn't twigged the use of Gate Box in the fast player window after Hunters move; Luke just seems better and better the more I learn about him. 

I am looking forward a great deal to all five Dream-Eaters investigators, but I think your after action report cinches it: I'm playing Luke first.

 

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My husband played him and his Gate Box was awesome. 
But I have to say that Patrice was a very pleasant surprise. I had to change my mindset of how I run an investigator and look at the whole scenario with a different  perspective. Four to five new cards every round means not thinking ahead as much as making the most of the moment. Sometimes that requires creativity and using cards in ways I normally wouldn’t dream of, since they were just going to be discarded anyway.  It was kind of exhilarating! 

Edited by Mimi61

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6 hours ago, Spritz Tea said:

I actually hadn't twigged the use of Gate Box in the fast player window after Hunters move; Luke just seems better and better the more I learn about him. 

 

Yep, it's really an amazing application, you can prevent so many attacks and lead enemies away from the rest of your team. Next time I'm going to try out Barricade and try luring enemies into dead-end locations before barricading them in. You do need to be very aware of all the action windows. One thing I have yet to try is Scrying to ensure that Luke draws an enemy (one without Spawn instructions), then enter the Dream-Gate so the enemy spawn fails. 

I found that the Gate Box was most useful early in the campaign, where my deck was pretty weak and enemies were very scary - early on I used it a lot to prevent attacks, and later on when I was rocking Shrivelling (5) and a base willpower of 8, I mostly used it in the last moment before the end of the Investigator phase so I left the Dream-Gate almost immediately, just for the free movement. Once I had 2x Seal of the Elder Sign, charges on the gate-box became less of an issue (I never tried using Recharge on it, or Enraptured, but a different build might appreciate them).

In other news, I absolutely loved Stargazing/The Stars Are Right. Luke sometimes ends up with actions going spare when in his Gate (or when waiting for the last action of the turn to use Rite of Seeking) so being able to bank actions with Stargazing was great. I really appreciate the design: it is inherently valuable no matter the player count - on solo, The Stars Are Right skips an entire round's worth of encounter cards which is huge, whereas on 4-player it only prevents 1 out of 4 which is good but less impactful...but the fact that you can assign the economy boost and extra action to any investigator makes up for that, giving you inherent flexibility (there's a far greater chance that one of the 4 players will have a really good use for the economy and action at the time it hits). Plus, if you have read my rambling card reviews you know I care about card art and flavour; Stargazing is quite possibly the most beautiful art in the entire game and The Stars Are Right is also lovely. I genuinely want posters of both those pieces of art. 

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17 hours ago, Mimi61 said:

Wondering if a fireaxe is worth i

I looked at her deck after I posted last night and do have Fire Axe in it. I don’t remember it coming up, but it is definitely an option if you have resources and frees up a mystic slot. 

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Had time to play today, so I went two handed with Luke and Tommy in the dream world, and Tony and Mandy in the waking world, playing the 8-part campaign.
Liked all of the new investigators, though I threw decks together fairly quickly, so I ended up not liking the way I'd built each investigator, even though I succeeded at each of the scenarios.
Tempted to rebuild the decks and restart the campaign, now I've actually played the investigators.
The scenarios definitely seem pretty generous with XP, presumably to offset the shorter campaigns for each group. I'd guess that means difficulty is going to ramp up quicker than usual in each campaign.

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Good news everyone! I'm now halfway through a Carcosa campaign with four players, all using new investigators - guardian Tony Morgan, a support-focused Luke Robinson, a gimmicky Rogue Mandy Thompson (incidentally I thoroughly recommend Rogue as her secondary class, above all in TCU and TFA where evasion is important), and me playing as Patrice Hathaway. All four investigators are excellent, fresh, fun, have cool new mechanics without seeming overpowered or unwieldy, and we're doing great. 

As I suspected, Patrice is becoming one of my favourite investigators in the game and feels the most survivor-y of any investigator. She's a bit weak scenario 1, but once she has 5 exp it all comes together. 

I will also admit to being wrong about Mandy's deck-size - with the new Research events and her abilities, a 40-card deck has consistently been excellent for research-heavy Mr Rook decks. I only wish her secondary class had been 5/10/15 cards depending on it she had a 30/40/50 card deck, as it feels like there needs to be a bit more incentive to choose a bigger deck and currently a bigger deck actually dilutes your secondary class. 

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29 minutes ago, Allonym said:

Mandy's deck-size - with the new Research events and her abilities, a 40-card deck has consistently been excellent for research-heavy Mr Rook decks. I only wish her secondary class had been 5/10/15 cards depending on it she had a 30/40/50 card deck, as it feels like there needs to be a bit more incentive to choose a bigger deck and currently a bigger deck actually dilutes your secondary class. 

Agreed on all points. I started out with a 30 card deck and as I was building realized I had almost 10 cards dedicated to searching the deck. For what??? More cards to search the deck? So I went to 40 and am hoping that is the magic number. I will play her tonight. I also thought it would’ve been nice to get even 2 extra cards of her secondary for every 10 over 30. 

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