14 January 2015 | Elder Sign

Tears in the Fabric of the World

Preview the Gates and Ancient Ones of Gates of Arkham


As a foulness shall ye know Them. Their hand is at your throats, yet ye see Them not; and Their habitation is even one with your guarded threshold. Yog-Sothoth is the key to the gate, whereby the spheres meet. Man rules now where They ruled once; They shall soon rule where man rules now. After summer is winter, and after winter summer. They wait patient and potent, for here shall They reign again.    –H.P. Lovecraft, The Dunwich Horror

Travel from harsh city streets into mysterious Other Worlds in Gates of Arkham, a new expansion for Elder Sign. With the Ancient Ones growing ever stronger, the horrors have broken out of the museum’s confines and now run rampant throughout Arkham. Even worse, gates to Other Worlds are opening at locations across the city, in the Woods and the Black Cave, in the center of town at Independence Square, even within the Bank of Arkham and the South Church. Only by traveling through these gates and encountering the Other Worlds can you make Arkham safe once more. Only by defeating the horrors occupying Arkham can you prevent the terrible, doombringing Ancient Ones from awakening.

In today’s preview you will learn how gates connect Arkham to Other Worlds and what terrible dangers these gates pose for human civilization. You’ll also learn about two of the new Ancient Ones featured in Gates of Arkham, whose mere tentative stirrings open these gates that not only destabilize time and space but also let loose terrible monsters into the city.

Passages Between Worlds

The gates opening throughout Arkham have released not only Vampires or Cultists, but inhuman and vicious creatures such as Night Gaunts, Gugs, and Dholes into the streets. These monsters haunt the Miskatonic shores and lurk in dark hallways, stalking their next victims. Worse than the monsters, the gates themselves make locations that might seem safe – the Police Station, the Arkham Asylum, St. Mary’s Hospital – dangerous, unstable passages into Other Worlds where the bravest investigators might fear to venture.

You have always been able to visit Other Words in Elder Sign. In Gates of Arkham, however, visits to Other Worlds take on a renewed importance. Now a multitude of effects, from Mythos cards to the advancement of the doom track can cause gates to Other Worlds to open. When a gate opens and an Other World is revealed, a gate marker is placed on both that facedown Other World and an Arkham Adventure card, showing the link between them. Until the Other World adventure is resolved and the gate is sealed, no investigator can move to or attempt that Arkham Adventure.

A gate may open, for instance, in the back booth at Velma’s Diner – but only by passing through that gate will the investigators learn what Other World it connects to. It may lead to the City of Gugs, a mausoleum-like realm that offers an Elder Sign, a Unique Item, and the chance to retreat doom to the investigator who completes an adventure there. However, be careful that you do not fall victim to vicious gugs, ghasts, or ghosts inhabiting this Other World. Or, from Velma’s diner you may walk into submerged, sanity-draining Ancient Sarnath, where even the hardiest investigators are reluctant to go.

Three sets of gate markers, along with several markers for sealed gates, are included in Gates of Arkham. If you are asked to open a fourth gate, you must spawn a monster instead. If all Arkham Adventures have either an open gate or a sealed gate marker on them and another gate opens, a gate burst occurs. You must then advance doom and remove all sealed gate markers before adding another gate and venturing into the Other World where it leads.


The Lurker at the Threshold

All four of the Ancient Ones introduced in Gates of Arkham cause gates to open as they awaken. As the guardian of the gates, Yog-Sothoth is feared even by other Ancient Ones. He is the eldest of them all, the omniscient lurker at the threshold, eager to consume all life forms that come within his reach, and his reach only increases as the boundaries between worlds become blurred. His awakening is the catalyst for the terrible End Times, and you will need fifteen Elder Signs to ensure that he remains asleep. While still asleep he is quite capable of shredding the dimensional fabric and unleashing plentiful horrors.

If Yog-Sothoth is the Ancient One, a gate opens every midnight. Four more gates will open over the course of his awakening. He causes more gates to open than any other Ancient One does, destabilizing locations throughout Arkham, pulling monsters into the world, and hastening the advance of doom. Yog-Sothoth also prevents investigators from using spells, focusing dice, and receiving assistance when they are in Other Worlds. So, even as a multitude of gates are opening, Yog-Sothoth makes it more difficult for investigators to seal those gates – or even survive.

A Sight Worse than Death Itself

The Ancient Ones are hideous to look upon, and the sight of one has been known to drive even the most fearless men insane. Yet only the dark god Ghatanothoa eternally paralyzes those who look upon him, transforming their bodies to stone and leather while their brains remain living and functional within, all too aware of their helpless imprisonment. Long ago, this hellish demon held sway over the ancient land of K’naa; now he waits just outside of Arkham, eager to rule again.

It takes only ten Elder Signs to defeat Ghatanothoa, but there are only nine spots on his doom track, so you do not have much time to gather those priceless tokens. Your search for them will likely take you into Other Worlds, especially with gates opening throughout Arkham, but Ghatanothoa’s presence makes traveling to Other Worlds quite deadly. When an investigator completes an Other World adventure, he rolls a green die. On a terror result, the investigator is devoured, having met Ghatanothoa’s annihilating gaze.

Through the Gates

The gates tearing at Arkham’s dimensional fabric are as big a threat as the Gugs lurking in back alleys, the Cultists performing black magic in the forest, or the bootlegging gang wars that have claimed countless innocent victims. Only by venturing through the gates into the unknown can you make time and space cohere again and prevent the terrible Ancient Ones from taking over the world.

Pre-order Elder Sign: Gates of Arkham from your local retailer today!


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