"Ashcan" Pete
The Drifter

Survivor
Investigator

Drifter.

Willpower: 4. Intellect: 2. Combat: 2. Agility: 3.
Health: 6. Sanity: 5.

You begin the game with Duke in play.

Discard a card from your hand: Ready an asset you control. (Limit once per round.)

effect: +2. Ready Duke.

"C'mere, boy. We got work to do."
Jake Murray
The Dunwich Legacy #5.
"Ashcan" Pete

"Ashcan" Pete - Back

Investigator

Deck size: 30.

Deckbuilding Options: Survivor cards () level 0-5, Neutral cards level 0-5, up to five level 0 cards from any other class.

Deckbuilding Requirements (do not count toward deck size): Duke, Wracked by Nightmares, 1 random basic weakness.

At night, "Ashcan" Pete sleeps wherever his travels take him: in a field, on a train, or maybe, if he's lucky, in a barn. He bunks with his loyal hound dog, Duke, on one side and his beat-up guitar on the other. And sometimes when Pete sleeps, he dreams. He dreams of haunted, tortured places and of horrible creatures. When he wakes up, he knows that someone needs his help, because his dreams are true. He could not say how long he has been on the road, living by his wits, but he can say for certain no place is too far to go to help someone in need. And as long as Pete can help people, he is not likely to stop wandering any time soon.
"Ashcan" Pete
FAQs (taken from the official FAQ or FFG's responses to the official rules question form)
  • You don't need to pay Duke's cost when you start the game with him in play.

  • Erratum: Ashcan Pete's Deckbuilding Options should read: "... up to five other level 0 cards from any other classes (, , , and/or )." - FAQ, v.1.5, April 2019

Last updated
Reviews

(Edit: Fixes and adjustments)

No Ashcan review after several years? Why? What? Lets fix that!!

----TL;DR. "Ashcan" Pete is perhaps the fastest solo investigator, he can obtain clues in bulk right from round 1 and defend himself from smaller threats, also resistant to the mythos phase, he tends to choke on tough enemies that don't go down after 4 damage.----

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"Ashcan" Pete and Duke are the romantic duo of Arkham Horror the card game, together they make up an exceptional character who can start every scenario strong. "Ashcan" is flexible, since he's able to kill dangerous things and get clues right from round 1.

First, check out his stats:

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4 is a great great number, it means that you can circumvent a lot of painful and problematic effects such as discards, lost actions and horror, it even means that via Ashcan's out-of-faction splash slots he can tech spell assets to cover his bases when Duke is tired.

The relative safety afforded by this strong stat gives you leeway to play fast and risky without having to slot dedicated horror tanks like Cherished Keepsake or Peter Sylvestre. It gives you freedom to pursue Accessories like Grisly Totem or Rabbit's Foot and allies like Madame Labranche or Stray Cat.

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An of 2 can be problematic, some scenarios might force these tests on you for scenario purposes, for clue purposes though Dog got ya covered buddy, an of 4 is outright great. Grab powerful events like Lucky!, Trial by Fire or Will to Survive to sneak successes through those scenario tests. Ashcan's nonreliance on XP items also makes early Stroke of Luck a fine choice.

You can support Duke's investigating with Newspaper, which is pretty good on Pete, and bonuses via skill cards and Grisly Totem, I wouldn't hesitate to say that Guiding Spirit is all but printed for "Ashcan" Pete. With Duke as an initial shield you're guaranteed to keep the Guiding Spirit in play for a long time, the trick is not to start allocating horror on Duke until the spirits show up.

You can also build a combo with Scavenging, Rabbit's Foot and Newspaper, add Grisly Totem to profit even more! Newspaper with Duke is outrageously good in two to three player.

Note that I left out "Look what I found!", this card is rarely required for Pete in standard unless you're playing duo specifically. It's still great in harder modes regardless of squad size.

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The measly 2 is a nonissue, it's rarely a scenario specific test and you fight with Duke anyway. Duke needs help to get you through combat, again skills are a good choice and Grisly Totem empowers all of that.. Scrapper is helpful down the line but it's not a high priority because there really is no reason at all to run economy in Pete decks, the natural trickle fuels most of his spending, leaving very little leftover for talent use.

Pete is also one of the characters that makes great use of the Fire Axe and Dark Horse combo. He can cover Dog with axe chops and by staying poor he buffs Duke's investigation attempts. If you go this route keep your events cheap and assets lean. Will to Survive is an interestingly consistent crowning jewel to this build, it can be used to dump your resources enough to get into dark horse range and murder/investigate the crap out of whatever you encounter.

That said, Duke and Fire Axes arent deadly enough to beat multiplayer bosses, Pete is'nt particularly impressive fighting at 5 with Old Hunting Rifle, meaning that outside solo Ashcan is significantly stronger at clues than combat.

Vicious Blow is not a terrible 1 or 2-off, it can help you survive tricky fights, especially in Forgotten age where 3 health foes are common.

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3 isn't bad, it gives you a small gateway through which you might escape from threats you cannot kill, this stat isn't worth much mention and "Ashcan" Pete isn't particularly inclined to use Track Shoes, Peter Sylvestre or Ornate Bow. He does enjoy a flexible cardpool so if you do decide to try this route out, you will find that it works "okay".

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"Ashcan" Pete has some pretty useful abilities, you might even consider his effective statline to be 4 - 4 - 4 - 3. Which becomes an impressive 5 - 5 - 5 - 4 with Dark Horse, this statline is then well supported by judicious use of skill cards and tricks like Lucky!, simple classics like Guts, Overpower and Perception work wonders for this guy and even when you don't like whichever skill you're holding you can just chuck it at Dog to refresh him.

Access to good talents to boost Ashcans skills is limited to start, but Plucky and Scrapper combine to cover every base, Plucky wont blow up immediately thanks to Duke, make sure to bring Emergency Cache to fund these cards. Without the XP talents to spend cash on, dont waste deckslots on Emergency Cache.

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"Ashcan" Pete's abilities are: Duke, plain and simple. The main ability is to be used on Duke, the refreshes Duke. That said you can do sneaky things with that , for example:

The isn't always good, but sometimes it can grease your gameplay to godlike speed, picking up 3+ clues and moving 3 locations in a blizzard of action efficiency.

"Ashcan" Pete has less printed health and horror then most folks do, but it's made up for by Duke. netting you a more then average 8 / 8 damage and horror capacity.

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Duke is one of the greatest strengths in the game, only one other asset is as equally capable of netting you kills and clues, Agency Backup, and that thing costs 7 resources and 5 XP! Of course "Ashcan" Pete revolves around this card like the earth around the sun, feeding it cards and keeping it safe from pain. Certain campaigns do kick you in the shins a bit, its imperative that you tech in solutions to the problems that might arise when that happens.

  • A few scenarios will bump off an asset (Crypt Chill for example), mulligan for something that can cover Duke.
  • Circle undone sometimes directly damages allies, don't assign optional damage to Duke and bring cards like Inspiring Presence to heal him. Perhaps tech A Chance Encounter in this campaign.
  • A scenario in Dunwick can... yeah.... If this happens, cry. Mulligan for allies in this particular scenario.

Because of Dukes free move, Ashcan is among the fastest clue gatherers in the game (his ability to start working right from round 1 with, often, no setup, might actually make him the fastest), building him in this direction in a team is a good idea. Note that while he is fast, he might have a little trouble with high volume, high shroud, locations, I.E he's still not necessarily a better cluehunter then the average , he's just harder to pin down.

This is also true for as mentioned far above. In general when the going gets tough, "Ashcan" Pete may crumble and stop being able to survive or contribute. It's rare for things to get sufficiently tough in solo, but a multiplayer "Ashcan" Pete generally needs his friends, who he's been dragging through the first half of any given scenario, to now take over and pull him through the latter half. In short, Ashcans unique niche is to carry a team through the early part of a scenario so that his teammates, who have now had peace and quiet to deploy all their assets, can power through the remainder.

Starting with Duke in play makes "Ashcan" Pete the most consistent character in solo, the reduced health totals also makes the hard fights more doable. That said you still should'nt go around picking fights with Eztli Guardians.

When you're working around Duke's downtime, use it to play the few assets you need and to refresh your hand, you might sometimes wind up chucking half your cards at Duke in a scenario so drawing cards is usually better than resources. Typically however, if Duke is up, find something to use him on! Don't wait around and allow the scenario get ahead of you.

Keep in mind this interaction of mechanics: When you trigger the Duke investigate, if you move to a new location as part of Duke's mechanic any enemies at the new location will not Opportunity attack you. This is because the action cost has already been paid at the old location and the effect is now underway and therefore the window has closed. Please correct me if wrong.

Wracked by Nightmares is a crippling problem, but as weaknesses go, this one is mild. The obvious nightmare is to draw it while you're fighting or a scenario is winding down while you race after clues. Chancy but manageable at just 2 lost actions in most cases. Trivial in multiplayer when a friendly fighter might remove it for you.

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"Ashcan" Pete operates very well without having to play many assets. A heavy sack of skill cards can get him through a map just fine. Pete struggles for cards however, which is why Rabbit's Foot, Madame Labranche and Scavenging can all be good for him, they net him a few extra cards even if it's only to feed Duke.

One you've spent 20 or so XP as Ashcan, you'll probably run aground and struggle to find good stuff to spend XP on. Key of Ys is always a thing, but more interestingly there's Stroke of Luck, Alter Fate and Fortune or Fate. Other characters, even , don't have all that much leftover XP, Deckspace or resources to work with, Ashcan does tend to have leftovers of all of these!

There's a lot of cool out of faction options, it'd be hard to mention all of them, and i've already mentioned a few, here are some more highlights:

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In summatum, "Ashcan" Pete is a strong character. He's one of the greatest solo characters in the game and a very powerful earlygame powerhouse in team compositions. When hitpoint total go up and clue-counts on difficult locations in multiplayer he'll start to run out of steam, he's therefore best teamed up with powerhouses that can make up for his modest skill values by tackling the hard spots with supercharged skill bursts (such as a with Streetwise or a using a bulked up and some spells to do it). He's also significantly stronger at chasing clues then killing big enemies, therefore teaming up with someone who can tackle and kill or delay bosses is a good idea.

Tsuruki23 · 811
I’m extremely confused - how are you getting six clues with either his elder sign Effect or Inspiring Presence? Duke doesn’t discover additional clues, so I’m not sure where the extra three are coming from? — Death by Chocolate · 12
3 Actions, all using Duke. You can do this by chucking cards at duke and using Inspiring Precense or his elder sign. — Tsuruki23 · 811
Example round where you get 6 clues: Midnight masks. Duke move to Easttown, use Inspiring Presence on test and succeed. Second Duke move to Downtown, succeed. Chuck a card from hand at Duke. Third move to Northside. 3 moves and 6 clues in one round! — Tsuruki23 · 811
Yeah colour me surprised, WTF, somehow 4 people read Duke and got the idea that he has 2 clues per success — Tsuruki23 · 811
Even so, still strong. — Tsuruki23 · 811
Between good skill access, Look what I found and Newspaper he still has great clue speed. — Tsuruki23 · 811
Yeah, Duke is fantastic - but not free move plus bonus clue fantastic, lol. Also, I think Newspaper 2 is solid, but I’m not convinced it is outrageously good unless you aren’t a primary investigator since it requires you to have no clues for both the bonus and the extra clue. It’s really dependent on how frequently the act takes yours clues, and probably only triggers 2-3 times per scenario depending. — Death by Chocolate · 12