|Call of Cthulhu LCG | Published 14 January 2011|
The few saints depicted bore expressions distinctly open to criticism, while one of the windows seemed to show merely a dark space with spirals of curious luminosity scattered about in it. Turning away from the windows, Blake noticed that the cobwebbed cross above the altar was not of the ordinary kind, but resembled the primordial ankh or crux ansata of shadowy Egypt.
-H.P. Lovecraft, The Haunter of the Dark
The year has barely started and already Cthulhu is bursting out of the gates. The balance shifts as the new FAQ settles old scores and The Order of the Silver Twilight expansion brings a new faction into Arkhams' seedy underbelly. Before long we can delve further into The Secrets of the Order as a new six part Asylum Pack cycle explores these new circumstances. It will take some time before the dust settles in Arkham.
There are a lot of themes connecting the expansion and the cycle. The obvious one is that of The Order itself, but there are more shout-outs between them. Previously James Hata mentioned that factions will return to their roots and for The Agency this can mean only one thing: Shooting things like there is no tomorrow. And given the setting, can you blame them?
The Devil And The Deep Blue Sea
Meet Sister Sofia, Nun with a Gun (The Order of the Silver Twilight, F1.) She once took a vow of silence. To Silence any tentacled, fish-gilled, non-euclidian scumbag with a little help of Saint Springfield, that is. She is quite cross, you see?
Now that I got most of the puns out of my system, let's look at what she does. Her card text has an interesting mechanic. Like Keeper of Dreams (Journey to Unknown Kadath, F109) she offers a choice. Either opponents don't drain their domains, or she may get the option to do some extra damage after all stories have resolved. Letting opponents call the shots (I said most!) is usually a bad idea, but at the very least they may be a little distracted as they will have to do some long term planning, as already during the operations phase they'll start impacting the next two story phases.
You can count on your opponent not to sit still, so more often than not it's at least double the damage from winning the Combat struggle, without the risk of backfire that usually comes with a booster icon, like those on Lightning Gun (Secrets of Arkham, F3.) A Nun wielding Yithian weaponry is sure to bring about images about divine retribution, though, so don't let that stop you. The extra regular combat icon will make her more effective.
Since The Agency is all about wounding, the toughness keyword does bring a few complications to this faction. Extra wounding can help immensely. Remember that Sister Sofias' response trigger requires multiple targets though. So no stacking all the extras to take down that The Thing from the Shore (The Thing From the Shore, F87), no matter how many domains are drained.
A Leap Of Faith
Going back to The Twilight Beckons, how are the themes connected? Amongst other things, through the terror struggle. Sister Sofia can’t go in guns blazing while insane. But even in a universe unconcerned with the plight of inconsequential mortals, a tiny spark of hope may yet spring into existence, with just enough longevity to drag you through a confrontation. Faith and courage from a symbol: The Holy Rosary (The Twilight Beckons, F2.)
Not only is The Agency the number one faction for dealing wounds, it also has become the world leader in supplying their characters with attachments. Guns, Vehicles and Items. Between Rosaries, and more unholy items like Tcho-Tcho Talisman (Core Set, F150) it is possibly to protect quite a number of characters from the horrors of insanity. The Rosary is free to play, so it can be deployed at no penalty to the “three action soft cap” that comes from the Call of Cthulhu domain system. Perfect for an aggressive Agency raid.
Brothers and Sisters
Even though the new Silver Twilight faction will receive a lot of attention this year, as they will have to catch up with the other seven factions, it doesn't mean the factions you are already familiar with will be forgotten. The birth of the order will be a trial by fire. The only thing standing between the brotherhood and this mean sister is you.
Based on the fiction of H.P. Lovecraft and his literary circle, Call of Cthulhu: The Card Game takes two players deep into the Cthulhu Mythos where investigators clash with the Ancient Ones and Elder Gods for the fate of the world. The Living Card Game format allows players to customize their gaming experience with monthly Asylum Pack expansions to the core game.
...but cards like Holy Rosary are boring on a monolithic level and inspire little buzz.
I like the previews and that FFG puts some CoC up here on the front page every week.
I hope the next card is more interesting...