Mystic
Asset. Ally

Ally. Sorcerer.

Cost: 1.
Test Icons:
Health: 1. Sanity: 2.

Forced - After Arcane Initiate enters play: Place 1 doom on it.

Exhaust Arcane Initiate: Search the top 3 cards of your deck for a Spell card and draw it. Shuffle your deck.

Xia Taptara
Core Set #63.
Arcane Initiate
FAQs (taken from the official FAQ or FFG's responses to the official rules question form)
  • When you use the ability to search the top 3 cards, if there is a Spell among them, you must draw it, even if it is Dark Memory. You cannot choose to fail to find what you're searching for if it's there.
Last updated
Reviews

Incredible value here.

1 resource for a 1/2 ally in play seems great already. A note on resources, they are not so easy to come by and decks loaded with assets and events are going to find it hard to play all those juicy cards. It's necessary therefore to pay attention to resource curve. Arcane initiate fits the resource curve requirement.

This enables card draw. In it's best scenario you've added a card to your hand and thinned the deck so you can draw more skills or assets. To maximize this effect you may wish to include 1/3 of your deck of spells (10 total spells). However, I don't think that's necessary. If you miss, no big deal as you can simply repeat it again next round. Spells will help 's through combat.

Finally we'll need to evaluate a doom token. I suspect that doom will be a big deal. So it will be necessary to investigate faster. I firmly believe Arcane Initiate provides self protection against additional doom.

... time will tell.

Azgadil 26
There's been some chat on Doom tokens on the Arkham LCG Reddit. I dismissed this card originally as the drawback (losing a turn) seems pretty big. But, I hadn't realised Doom is wiped when the agenda advances. So, you can drop her into play the turn the agenda will advance, or even drop her in, use her, then let her soak up some damage from a monster. I'm sure we'll see cards that you can feed your own allies to at some point as well. — unitled 1048
I very much like how Doom works in this game. Making the usual check during the Mythos step means you always have time to deal with any doom that enters play on other cards. So yeah, this Ally can be timed well. — Kamalisk 86
Like riding her down the cellar stairs. — MrCee 7
I think that the Arcane Ini — AndyB 295
I think that the Arcane Initiate needs to be well timed; adding one doom, losing one round, could be like paying 3 actions per initiate - done badly - or nothing, done right. Losing that many actions is hugely expensive. I'm not convinced about it being easy to play this at the end of an agenda, either; there aren't that many agenda ends to play it at. — AndyB 295
I'm currently playing agnes in the core campaign. I've had this card in first and second szenario in starting hand and it was no problem to play her in the turn before the agenda advanced. I think in szenario 1, she makes no difference as the players have lots of time. But to maximize victory points in szenario 2, you must be very careful with doom and actions. — Django 1270

One thing to remember with this card is, if you are playing Agnes Baker, her unique Weakness, Dark Memory, is a Spell card. If it is the only Spell card drawn, you are obligated to draw it.

"When resolving a search effect, a player is obligated to find the object of the search should one or more eligible options be found within the searched area." Rules Reference Guide - Search

Holy crap, I missed that one. Good to know. — Heyenzzz 1048

I was a little down on this card after Peter Sylvester came out because I think he is a far better ally for Agnes (or Jim for that matter!) than Arcane Initiate and I wouldn't want them to compete for the same ally slot. But then I considered the following- Would I play a 1-resource event that allowed me to search the top three cards of my deck for a spell and prevent the next damage or two horror? Yes. Yes I would, that is an insane amount of value for an action card. I no longer think about Arcane Initiate as competing for an ally slot. She gets one or two activations and then protects me from an attack or something. As long as you're planning on killing her off, the doom counter is manageable and free spell draws is (almost) always good.

Obviously, the above evaluation is a little short sighted. There will be times where playing her is restrictive due to doom or when you already have Peter Sylvester and can't afford to throw him away for one or two activations of Arcane Initiate. But I still think she is worth including in any spell deck. Hitting on it once pays for itself. I recommend you mulligan for her over your "better" ally in your opening hand, getting the value out of her and dumping her at your earliest convenience when you can than play out your Peter or what have you.