|For Every Blessing, A Curse
A Preview of Unseen Forces, An Upcoming Expansion for Elder Sign
|Elder Sign | Published 22 March 2013|
What might have happened had I not confronted this evil? Truly, fortune smiles upon me. Yet each time I face such beasts and witness such horrors, I wonder: what if the subtle forces forging my path are not a blessing, but rather a curse? Perhaps the unseen hands shaping my fate seek only to push me toward oblivion.
In Unseen Forces, the upcoming first expansion for Elder Sign, investigators old and new return to the museum to complete adventures in an attempt to keep the Ancient Ones from awakening. Mysterious forces are at work, as horrifying new monsters and dangerous new Mythos cards collude to unleash ruin on the investigators. As they venture through the museum, investigators may find themselves blessed as they work to finish tasks and complete adventures. Good fortune may not last long; a curse may be waiting just around the next corner.
In this preview, we will explore the new Blessed and Cursed custom dice and cards, which represent the whims of the forces beyond the control of our investigators. Will the powers that be gift you with a blessing? Or will you be punished with a curse?
Fortune Smiles Upon You
Sometimes, it really is as simple as choosing to do evil, or choosing to do good.
When brave investigators are rewarded with a blessing, they receive a Blessed card. While an investigator is blessed, he may add the white Blessed die along with the regular green dice and any additional dice being used in that adventure. The Blessed die is used exactly like the green, yellow, and red dice, giving a lucky investigator an extra result to aid him in his adventure. It stays in an investigator’s dice pool until it is used to complete a task, it is discarded, or the investigator’s turn ends.
An investigator remains Blessed so long as he appeases the mysterious forces – if an investigator should fail an adventure or be foolish enough to awaken an Ancient One, his blessed status is revoked. Of course, an investigator unlucky enough to have a curse visited upon him must discard his Blessed card as well.
Good fortune has its limits – an investigator may only have one Blessed card at a time. Those who manage to become Blessed a second time may instead choose a clue token or an item to assist them in their journey through the museum.
Fate Conspires Against You
“You’ll get everything that’s coming to you,” he told me. I understood.
When a curse is visited upon an investigator, he receives a Cursed card. While Cursed, the unlucky investigator must add the black Cursed die to his dice pool. The Cursed die cannot be assigned to tasks or discarded as usual. Instead, after each roll (and any rerolls, abilities, or terror effects have been resolved), if the black die matches the result of any other die in the result pool, the black die AND the matching die must be discarded. If the black die matches more than one result, the investigator chooses which result to discard along with the black die. This is in addition to the regular discard of one die after a failed attempt at a task.
The black die stays in the investigator’s dice pool until it is discarded with a matching result. It cannot be discarded as a result of a failed roll and it is not affected by any cards or abilities.
In the previous round, Rita Young was cursed by a Mythos card, and is now attempting to resolve the following task:
To counter the misfortune of her curse, she has used a common item to add the yellow die to the pool. Because of her curse, she must also add the black die to her dice pool. She rolls the dice, and obtains the following results:
The black die comes up with three investigation, which matches the three investigation on the yellow die and one of the green dice. Rita chooses to discard the green three investigation along with the black die (note that she cannot choose to discard a green one investigation and a green two investigation; she must discard a die showing the exact same symbol). (1) Then, because she cannot complete either of the tasks, she discards another green die (2) from her pool before rolling again.
An investigator like Rita may only rid herself of a curse by successfully completing an adventure, awakening an Ancient One, or becoming Blessed.
While positive effects are limited, fate’s cruelty knows no bounds. Just as an investigator may not be doubly Blessed, he cannot be doubly Cursed. Investigators unfortunate enough to become Cursed a second time are simply devoured.
Forces at work in the museum dole out blessings and curses with the help of new Mythos cards, and as rewards and penalties for adventures throughout the game.
Next time, we’ll take a look at the newly remodeled museum entrances, and preview some of the new adventure cards and other worlds available to explore in the upcoming Elder Sign: Unseen Forces expansion!
Elder Sign is a fast-paced, cooperative dice game of supernatural intrigue for one to eight players by Richard Launius and Kevin Wilson, the designers of Arkham Horror.