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Jonathan Ward

Rumour cards

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Hello,

Just purchased the game and I am presently battling my way solo through the rules and gameplay.  First two games were diabolical (I shudder in horror!)with constant rule reading, re-reading (BGG rule forum checks) and several forgetful lapses concerning order of play, emerging rules from the Mythos cards and GOO specific rule sets.  Anyhow, amidst all the frowning and chin scratching I started to get it.  The following game flowed neatly and I pretty much kept all things as they should be...oh, I'm playing 4 Investigators and lost each time thus far (GOO awakens as too many gates open).  By my fifth game I was ready to send the eldritch SOB's back to hell.  I knew the rules like a Miskatonic archivist (not realy), I had my 'order of play' flow chart at hand, 2 lt bottle of coke and Nekton Falls twisting out of my HI-Fi...

...man, did I get annhilated!  Turn 3 I pulled the Rumour card where you have to place 6 clue tokens on the card and roll each Mythos phase to see if they increase by 1 (10 max lose all Elder signs).  I could zap the card by going to a street and losing tokens on a one to one thus removing the card from play.  Eh, I thought I have enough tokens to do that this turn so off I went to the street and...aghhhhhh I forgot a curfew was in place.  Doomed.  It eventually got to 8 tokens before the curfew was lifted and I was free to nullify the card.  I never really recovered from this and lost to a GOO.

I think for now I will investigate Arkham without activating the Rumour cards.  It felt at the time that things were bad enough and got uncontrollably worse when the Rumour appeared.  I guess there will come a point when I understand the strategy well enough to give the rumours a go...but at the moment they just wipe the floor with me.  I wish this game had some training missions or kind of nursery slopes for familiarisation purposes rather then throwing Cthulhu at you from the get go and shouting "Deal with it!" 

Are the Rumour cards aimed at the 4+ player games.  I imagine 8 players could deal with a rumour much more efficiently.  

I continue my endeavours...furtively   

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Hi Jonathan,

and welcome to the Carnival gran_risa.gifhappy.gifaplauso.gif You've just purchased one of the greatest board game ever!

Rumors. Yes, you're right, it could be problematic to deal with them properly. And you're right saying that probably it's just a question of tactics. And a bit of luck. Some rumors are *really* difficult to beat when drawn at certain points of the game. Clue-sucking rumors can be difficult to pass in the last part of the game, when almost all resources have been used, while gate / monster trophies sucking rumors can be a major pain when drawn during the very first rounds.

Nonetheless, I wouldn't suggest you removing rumors from the game, but trying to focus more on the game itself. Once you understand how the base game can be beaten, you won't lose *any* game. If you'd like to spoil a little the game, you're welcome. For now, I can give you two suggestions: first of all, remember the game is not about monsters but about sealing gates. Do not lose time with monsters when you have the chance to jump into a gate. When you seal / close a gate, it's very likely to happen some monsters will be removed from the board. Second point: clues are vital. Very often, in the first games, people (including myself) used to spend clues for passing checks and gain items, dollars or whatelse. The main point is that you have many clues on the board at the beginning of the game, but you'll run out of them very quickly. Save clues for sealing. Or for adding dice to checks you have to pass or the game will change (a charachter being devoured or something really nasty happening). Try to put as quick as possible at least two seals on the board in the very first 4 round of play. Then everything should be better, and if a rumor will appear, then you should have enough time to beat it, or should be at a point good enought for being able to ignore the rumora and go for a sealing victory

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In Dunwich Horror there is a mission that will allow you to remove all rumour cards from the game if you complete it successfully. It's (almost) the only mission worth completing. Rumours are often the worst thing that can happen in a game, derailing a game that was running smoothly because it's something you cannot ignore but also cannot spare the resources to deal with properly. But sometimes it can also be a boon, since the reward for completing them is usually quite generous.

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I also find the mission "Sealing the Beast's Power" to be particularly useful. In a recent game, it allowed me to take as many as three doom tokens off of Tsathoggua before we were all unceremoniously slaughtered! Now that's power.

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The last time I got that Rumor that early in the game, we just ignored it and let it go off since we hadn't sealed any gates yet. No need to waste clue tokens for nothing.

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If I'm running a game with a new player I typically skip any rumors that come up in the first half of the game since there's already so much to take in.

I also will redraw monsters if an especially difficult one comes up in the first 2-3 turns. 

If all the players have played before I don't bother with this.

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There are some hard ones in Dunwich that require pooling of Stamina/Sanity, and the Mistrust rumor in Innsmouth can be a huge setback, espeically  at the start of the game. Requiring to discard unique and common items is nasty.  An equally nasty fail condition also-all investigators' focus is reduced to zero and they can no longer trade items and money.  Yikes.

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   Rumours are the most common way to lose control of a smoothly going game ( at least to my experience ). Terror level? No problem. Monsters manifesting left, right and center? Bring them on! But a failed rumour can be something that leaves you weeping in despair.  

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I find Rumours are an important part of the threat, that often bring great 'plot twist' elements into play (similar to environments but generally moreso).  I had one game where "The stars are right" comes out end of turn 1, with no character being one with a starting ally, how narratively appropriate if painful is that mad rush to get an ally.

I found tracking things playing solo challenging at first too, having to call "mulligan" on myself and restart or treat as "not official" games after goofing badly pretty often.  With real players you can divvy up a bit responsibility for remembering GOO effect, Herald effect, Environment card etc. or at the very least it takes multiple lapses to let something slip.

The most important thing I did was start using a Cthulhu statue token as "first player" marker so I would not forget where I was at any point.

Rob

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