Dexter Drake returned from the Great War to become a successful magician, enthralling audiences with his elaborate illusions and cunning stage tricks. Despite his meteoric success, Dexter always longed to discover true magic. This desire soon led him into the reserved section of a dust-filled shop dedicated to obscure books. There, he found a burnt and torn fragment of the Necronomicon itself. Intrigued by this ancient piece of occult knowledge, Dexter began to use his wealth in search of the truth about ancient lore, and what he found horrified him. His delving into the arcane eventually led him to Arkham, where he suspects a great evil will soon rise. He knows that he may well be the only person with the ability to stop this evil from swallowing the entire world.

Forbidden Alchemy , the terrifying expansion for Mansions of Madness , will ooze onto store shelves next week!

Leading up to this sanity-bending release, our detailed series of previews have included a snapshot of photographer Darrell Simmons and the flying Byakhee, a psycho-analysis of Carolyn Fern along with several new Combat cards, and a complete examination of Dr. Vincent Lee and the Side Effects mechanic. We’ve even posted the rules for Forbidden Alchemy (pdf, 7.2 MB) on our support page .

Now, with your adventures into Arkham’s laboratories just days away, we’ll conclude our series of previews with a look at master illusionist Dexter Drake. We’ll also take a brief glimpse at one of Forbidden Alchemy ’s gripping stories, Lost in Time and Space .

Now you see him...

Having delved into the ancient magics that his stage shows only approximate, Dexter Drake knows something of the forces that exist at the fringes of the universe. His fairly well-rounded traits boast a slight advantage in Lore, and as one might expect, he can begin the game in control of a spell. But for those times when a more corporeal weapon is necessary, his versatile Sword Cane can be used to bludgeon or stab.

Arguably, Drake’s most impressive (and thematically satisfying) aspects come in his choices of once-per-game abilities. His Disappearing Act (always a crowd favorite) lends new importance to the trunks and wardrobes in which Investigators can hide, while his Master of Illusion ability can help temporarily throw a pack of charging Maniacs off his trail.

Perfect timing

Some cosmic phenomena, however, are beyond even the considerable capabilities of the great Dexter Drake. The second of Forbidden Alchemy ’s three new stories, Lost in Time and Space , introduces a bold new concept never before seen in Mansions of Madness : time travel. As you and your fellow investigators attempt to uncover clues surrounding a brilliant scientist’s disappearance, you may find yourselves constantly running out of time.

Lost in Time and Space features three new cards, the Time Period cards, as well as a time period marker to indicate your team’s current whereabouts (or, rather, whenabouts). Various story effects will trigger spontaneous and often dangerous temporal shifts, as you make your way through a perilous laboratory in search of your goal. At other times, however, you’ll want to rely on the inscrutably complex workings of the Time Machine to overcome certain obstacles. For example, what if you knew your next clue was behind an impassable wall? What if you could travel to a time before that wall was built? The possibilities boggle the mind.

But beware! Time travel is never a permanent escape from the otherworldly horrors that pursue you, and in fact, your temporal tinkering may attract the attention of foul hunters that make their home in nearby dimensions. Whenever your team travels through time, all current monsters are placed off the board near their appropriate Time Period card, where they heal themselves and wait for the eventual return of their prey. Similarly, the Keeper can capitalize on your overuse of the Time Machine by dropping a Hound of Tindalos in your path.

Lost in Time and Space will challenge your perceptions and redefine your expectations as it takes Mansions of Madness ’ versatile story system in an all new direction. Ready for the release of Forbidden Alchemy ? Use your time machine to travel to the end of next week, and pick up a copy at your local retailer! (Those of you without time machines will have to wait.)

Mansions of Madness is a macabre game of horror, insanity, and mystery for two to five players. Based on the beloved fiction of H.P. Lovecraft, Mansions of Madness tells a story in which one player takes on the role of the keeper, a malevolent force working to complete a sinister plot, and all other players take on the roles of investigators, the unlikely heroes who gather to oppose him.

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