Q: If I fail a test that has costs other than actions associated with it (like spending ammo or charges), do I need to respend costs to 'attempt that test again'? My read is no: it's not a new action, it's just 'go straight back into the skill test', without spending costs. Is that correct? A: Correct. The investigator does not need to pay any costs associated with the skill test again (such as ammo, actions spent, etc), although anything spent to improve the previous test (like committed costs or resources on a Talent) are indeed lost at the end of the first test.
Q: Does a skill test end at the same time as the action spent to trigger it, if it is, for instance, an Investigate test or Fight test? Do end of skill test and end of action effects trigger at the same time? A: Correct, an action that is a skill test (such as Investigate or Fight) ends at the same time that the skill test ends, so both such effects would trigger at the same time.
Fast. Play after a skill test you failed ends (after resolving all effects from the failed test).
Attempt that test again. You get +2 skill value for this test.
This is an extraordinarily good card. It definitely ranks in the top 3 for the Forgotten Age cycle, if not being the very best level 0 card in the cycle. It is good for 3 simple reasons:
A: It plays somewhat similarly to Lucky! in that it lets you play fast and loose with your card and resource commitment to tests. Say for example you can beat a -3 with minimal effort (Agnes Baker Rite of Seeking investigating a Shroud 2 location for example) but there's a -5 in the bag, Live and Learn will help you beat that check with assurity.
B: It protects against tokens and very large negatives (more common in harder modes). Giving you a retry on that test.
C: It recovers lost time and resources! Namely the action spent to attempt that test and whatever charges, ammo, secrets, supplies, whatever you used on the original test. (In the example above, lets say Agnes Baker drew a -5, with Live and Learn she can try that test again, without spending an extra Rite of Seeking charge, and the +2 from Live and Learn will cover against another -5).
What a great card! Lucky! is a great card and this card will not change that, but it's so nice to have a card that fills a similar role to Lucky! while at the same time not being the same and still having its own space. I'm currently playing an Ashcan Desperate/Dark Horse/Yaotl deck and I'm taking out my Lucky!s because they cost one resource and have no icons in a deck that discourages having resources and encourages having cards with icons in the discard pile. They synergized badly with the deck. This card (while not necessarily getting along with Yaotl) is a great replacement in that deck.
In general, it's very well balanced with Lucky!. While Lucky! gives you a chance to pass a test when you would have failed after you've seen the token, Live and Learn lets you weasel out of an auto fail or other really bad draw. Lucky! costs a resource, while Live and Learn still resolves side effects of a bad test and does not guarantee success (or further side effects of another failed test). But it's free!
I'm happy to see the designers make a card like this, and I've enjoyed playing with it.
Interaction with Drawing Thin via designer Matt Newman.
This is a bit of a tricky interaction, so I apologize for any confusion here. I agree it’s a bit ambiguous. I think the ruling that makes the most sense here is the following:
As a general rule, when you use Live and Learn to attempt a test a second time, all effects with a duration that expire at the end of the first attempt will have expired by the time the second begins. This includes effects used during the first attempt that say “until the end of the skill test…”, “…for this skill test,” or the bonuses from committed cards, which are all discarded at the end of the first attempt. Effects that are inherent to the test itself (the test’s parameters, what happens if you succeed/fail, that sort of thing) all remain the same, even if they have a duration of “for this test.” So, for example, if an effect said “play during a skill test. until the end of the skill test, increase the test’s difficulty by 2,” that would expire at the end of the first attempt, whereas if the test itself said “Fight. Increase the difficulty of this test by 2,” that increase in difficulty would exist in both the first and second attempts.
Now for the tricky part: Which is Drawing Thin? Is it an effect that initiates during a skill test with a duration of that expires at the end of the skill test? Or is it an effect which alters the inherent nature of the skill test itself, such that it would affect both attempts? Since Drawing Thin does not explicitly say any variation of “until the end of the skill test” or “for this skill test,” and since its triggering condition is a “when” reaction to the skill test initiating and not something you use during the first attempt, my ruling is that Drawing Thin is changing the skill test’s inherent difficulty to be 2 higher—altering the nature of the test itself. Therefore if you use Drawing Thin when the skill test initiates, and then use Live and Learn to attempt that test a second time, the increased difficulty would carry over to the second attempt.
Again, apologies for the trickiness/ambiguousness. Hopefully this clears up this interaction, as well as clearing up how Live and Learn works in general. Thank you for bringing this to my attention; I’ll be sure to add it in the next edition of the FAQ as well.
If I am reading this correctly, this card has a weird synergy with .18 Derringer, .18 Derringer (2), and Chainsaw. If you attack and fail, you get your ammo/supply back, but, since you don't repay costs on Live and Learn tests, you don't respend the ammo/charge. So the second test costs nothing, and, if successful, deals damage, and, if not, gets you an extra ammo/supply. I am not sure how you generate bullets and gasoline out of thin air by messing around, but you also can't kill birds by getting scared in the real world, either.
Finally, this card found its place in a new investigator, Stella Clark. Because otherwise, this card is just not worth it. There're only two situations in this game, either you want to fail or win a skill check. And this card falls right down the middle. Yes, it's cheap, but you'd better get a successful check with one token pull, rather than two! Especially, if you resolve a non-number one.
As the cards come out - opinions change, slightly.
I found where this card was supposed to be. It was always Patrice. Mind's Eye made it a lot more useful.
From now on you can start an investigate test (the least harm in failure), fail it - "Look what I found!" some clues - Live and Learn - then switch to your willpower and make a pretty solid investigation with + 2.
It's a bit niche, you might never find them together, otherwise you'd use it to insure more investigating, just not to lose those precious spell charges.
Setup question: is the second attempt part of the same action, or a second action that has its action cost waived? This leads to the real question: How does this interact with Quick Learner? Quick guess: it's like Drawing Thin in that if you use it in your first action you'll get -1 to both attempts (-1 +2 = +1 for the second go). This would be true if both attempts are considered part of your first action. However if the second attempt is a second action whose cost has already been covered (including the action cost), then L&L is now a full +2. Flavor-wise the second makes sense as you are benefiting from learning quickly.