News for December 2011
Casting Your Enemies Into Tartarus 4
A Call of Cthulhu: The Card Game spotlight by guest writer Marius Hartland
Call of Cthulhu LCG | Published 09 December 2011

My memories are very confused. There is even much doubt as to where they begin; for at times I feel appalling vistas of years stretching behind me, while at other times it seems as if the present moment were an isolated point in a grey, formless infinity.
   –H.P. Lovecraft, The Book

The Relics introduced to Call of Cthulhu: The Card Game with the Ancient Relics cycle of Asylum Packs share a tendency to return to play, even after they are destroyed, but some of these ancient Relics are better kept out of reach for all eternity. And who is better suited to cause things to be lost in the space between spaces and the time before time than the mighty Yog-Sothoth? The Ancient One grants his followers the strong magic and complicated rituals necessary to cast such artifacts Into Tartarus.

Yog-Sothoth’s many Spells and Rituals often provide handy, multifunctional tools to force cards from one state of being to another. Ritual of Bellephar (Into Tartarus, 108) is no different. You can either use it offensively, to destroy your opponent’s deck, or as a way to get cards into your own discard pile, to retrieve them or to get various bonuses, like the cost reduction on the Ancient One himself, Yog-Sothoth (Core Set, 101).

Your time is up

Once your opponent’s deck is depleted, he’s eliminated from the game. Discarding your opponent’s deck is a more direct approach to victory than say, winning stories, and maybe even more satisfying. You can watch your opponent’s horror as a deck is slowly drained. Add to the terror as your hand size grows. With a couple of unspent Rituals of Bellephar in your hand, you can strike the final blow. The longer you wait, the more effective they become. It’s even possible to play them at the last possible point, and suddenly turn around what may have appeared to your opponent a certain victory. Despite their cheap cost, the Ritual is not something you want to use on the offense early on.

Going this route, Yog-Sothoth offers many cards that eat away at decks early on. Gatekeeper (Secrets of Arkham, 33) abuses struggles to whittle away cards. The dual-sided effect of Hermetic Scholar (Secrets of Arkham, 34) can provide both targets for reanimation as well as a quick and easy way to get deck-sizes into the danger zone.

Yog-Sothoth even has some handy support cards that help out. Prism of Many Views (The Twilight Beckons, 20) always shows some of the things you will throw into the abyss, either by the Prism itself or by other discard effects, and Blackmoor Estate (Core Set, 114) ensures a steady path to destruction, leading up to your final blow.

Beyond the flow of time and space

If the purple faction is not enough, you can find some extra deck manipulation in the Miskatonic University faction. With its accelerated draw mechanics Miskatonic is a natural complement to Yog-Sothoth’s machinations, and cards like Magnetic Spike (Never Night, 78) only add to the destruction as you can tear apart all the support cards your opponent paid to build, targeting the domain with which he paid to build them.

With the Ritual of Bellephar, the followers of Yog-Sothoth will soon gain the power they need to cast their opponents Into Tartarus. This fifth Asylum Pack in the Ancient Relics cycle will arrive soon, and its arrival shall herald a host of devastating new strategies.

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.

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Comments (4)

Published: 12/11/2011 3:16:02 PM

@HomerJ: It waits until all stories have been resolved. At that point, Gatekeeper has to be alive and sane, so she can 'see' that the triggers have been met, and they can be triggered. Only disrupt and forced response effects can be triggered mid-story resolution.

Published: 12/10/2011 8:22:39 AM

Rules question:  Does the response on Gatekeeper wait until after all of the story struggles have resolved and there is an action window, or immediately after the struggle in question has resolved?

Published: 12/9/2011 3:30:45 PM

Great straight forward mill card.  Too bad the CoC playgroups are already milled in the Northwest...

Published: 12/9/2011 12:29:11 PM

Looks like a decent cheap event to combo with deck-peeking or deck-searching abilities even if you're not running a discard deck.

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