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# The Difference Between Lock and Obstacle Cards?

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The example in the Rules booklet makes it seem as if Lock and Obstacle cards work differently. I have a question.

Lock cards are revealed when attempting to move into a room; I know that.
But are obstacle cards revealed like Lock cards, or are they revealed when exploring a room?

For instance:

Investigator tries to enter a room, and the Lock card is revealed. He eventually solves a puzzle or something. Then, he moves into the room. He then uses his Action to Explore, revealing the Obstacle.

Is this correct, or do both types of cards work exactly the same?

(If you don't understand what I mean, please tell me in a comment. I will happily rephrase)

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Matt09 said:

The example in the Rules booklet makes it seem as if Lock and Obstacle cards work differently. I have a question.

Lock cards are revealed when attempting to move into a room; I know that.
But are obstacle cards revealed like Lock cards, or are they revealed when exploring a room?

For instance:

Investigator tries to enter a room, and the Lock card is revealed. He eventually solves a puzzle or something. Then, he moves into the room. He then uses his Action to Explore, revealing the Obstacle.

Is this correct, or do both types of cards work exactly the same?

(If you don't understand what I mean, please tell me in a comment. I will happily rephrase)

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Yes, they work the same, but there is a difference.

A lock is a physical lock (example: rune lock).  An obstacle is anything else that prevents you from continuing (example: short circuit causing darkness).  The axe allows you to make a strength check against a lock to smash it.  Smashing the short circuit, an obstacle, wouldn't help you since it's an obstacle.

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GrimJester said:

Yes, they work the same, but there is a difference.

A lock is a physical lock (example: rune lock).  An obstacle is anything else that prevents you from continuing (example: short circuit causing darkness).  The axe allows you to make a strength check against a lock to smash it.  Smashing the short circuit, an obstacle, wouldn't help you since it's an obstacle.

Pass: Automatically solve a lock puzzle in your room.

I disagree with your interpretation of the Axe Card.

The card says that when you pass the strenght test, you automatically solve a lock puzzle in your room, not a lock card. You reveal a lock card whenever you try to move into a room with a lock card (using a move step). Even if a lock card reveals to be a lock puzzle, you still would not be able to use the axe, because the puzzle is in the room you are trying to move into, not your room.

However, if when exploring an obstacle card you reveal a lock puzzle, you could use the axe in a different turn to solve it. Then, you would need another action to continue exploring past the obstacle.

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Also note that the Axe only works on a Lock Puzzle ... not a Rune Puzzle or Wiring Puzzle.

demozon likes this

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Page 3, "Lock cards . . . prevent investigators from entering a room . . . .  Obstacle cards . . . prevent investigators from exploring that room . . . ."  (emphasis from Rules of Play).

I believe this distinction between locks and obstacles is more useful than "physical vs. prevents Investigators from continuing," because both a Lock and an Obstacle interrupt a step, i.e., "prevent from continuing."  The Lock interrupts a Movement Step, and if the Lock is defeated, the Movement Step is completed.  The Obstacle interrupts an Action Step (Explore), and if the Obstacle is defeated, the Action Step (Explore) is completed.  Page 17, "By completing a puzzle [on a Lock or Obstacle], the investigator can proceed with the movement or exploration the puzzle was hindering."

demozon likes this

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Re: using Axe on lock in adjacent room (because the lock is not yet defeated). This is explicitly disallowed in FAQ 2.0, q.v. Mack