Briefly summarized, it hinted at a hidden race of monstrous beings which lurked somewhere among the remoter hills - in the deep woods of the highest peaks, and the dark valleys where streams trickle from unknown sources. These beings were seldom glimpsed, but evidences of their presence were reported by those who had ventured farther than usual up the slopes of certain mountains or into certain deep, steep-sided gorges that even the wolves shunned.
–H.P. Lovecraft, The Whisperer in Darkness

Fantasy Flight Games is excited to announce Call of the Wild , an upcoming expansion for the Mansions of Madness board game! Venture into the unknown with five new scenarios and eleven double-sided board tiles.

Investigators are plunged into the mysterious backwoods, shaking the foundations of what players have come to expect. What’s more, the keeper must solve puzzles and seek out clues, a focus on outdoor maps encourages non-linear exploration, and Allies assist in combat and driving the macabre narrative.

The Keeper’s New Tricks and Challenges

The keeper has plans for the backwoods, and none of them mean good news for the investigators. Taking the keeper to the great outdoors has made him no less of a formidable opponent. He commands a whole host of horrible new monsters, and the investigators will have plenty of creatures to contend with as they comb the great outdoors for clues. The keeper can also now construct his own custom hand of Keeper Action cards, allowing him to create a uniquely terrifying and difficult experience for his opponents. What’s more, the keeper’s hand is held in secret in the Call of the Wild scenarios; his opponents won’t know what tricks await them until the first time a Keeper Action card is played. Adding an extra element of surprise to the keeper’s arsenal is sure to create even more suspense!

Though these changes have given the keeper more choices in how he seeks to foil the investigators, he will also be met with new challenges. In some scenarios, the keeper must seek out and collect various grotesque items of arcane power. Sometimes these items will simply be scattered about the wilderness, but in other scenarios, the investigators can work to hide the horrific components from the keeper. Once the keeper gathers them, these items can be used in a special ritual puzzle that the keeper must complete as part of his nefarious plan.

Explore the Treacherous Terrain

Of course, the keeper won’t be the only one contending with the challenges of the uncharted wilderness. Call of the Wild incorporates a whole new set of eleven board tiles, and exploring this terrain is key to the investigator’s success as well. The new scenarios in Call of the Wild focus on non-linear story progression. Players no longer hunt down a set of clues in a specific order, but are instead given a brief Investigator Strategy by the keeper at the outset of each game. The Investigator Strategy gives players a brief overview of how they might go about gathering information as they work their way through the woods.

Gathering the right clues and rumors is not an easy task in the frightening and fetid forest. Pits and brackish pools can damage heroes as they travel the terrain, and rivers can block off an avenue of retreat when being chased by some dark denizen of the forest. Players must take care to use the terrain to their advantage, lest the untamed woods wreak havoc on the hapless investigators!

Friends in the Forest

Not everything in the wilderness is out to get the investigators. New Ally characters are specific to the stories in Call of the Wild , and each one has his own deck of special cards. Allies work as neither investigators nor monsters, but can participate in combat, have conversations with investigators or give special tasks to complete for rewards. The Allies can be key in providing investigators with Rumors, bringing them ever closer to whatever malign truth the players are working to uncover.

Players shouldn’t believe everything they hear, however. In one scenario, titled “A Cry for Help,” players must work together to figure out which of the Allies is actually an evil cultist in disguise! The investigators will have to speak to each of these strange individuals in turn, uncover clues, and, finally, decide which of the Allies must be killed in order to save the world. Players must choose carefully, however. Should the investigators kill the wrong Ally, the keeper wins, and his dastardly plans come to a horrific fruition.

Look forward to marshaling your Allies, guessing at the keeper’s cards, foiling or completing rituals, and exploring the great outdoors. With all of these new challenges to contend with, the keeper and investigators alike will have their hands full as they contend with the terrain and terror of Call of the Wild . Visit our Call of the Wild  website to learn more, and look for this expansion to be released early in 2013!

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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