Gray's Anatomy
The Doctors' Bible

Seeker
Asset.

Item. Tome.

Cost: 3. XP: 5.
Test Icons:

: Choose a card at your location and test (1). For each point you succeed by, choose one -

- The next time that card would be healed this round, heal +1 damage/horror (to a maximum of +3).

- The next time that card would be dealt damage this round, deal +1 damage (to a maximum of +3).

Pixoloid Studios
The Scarlet Keys Investigator Expansion #58.
Gray's Anatomy
FAQs (taken from the official FAQ or FFG's responses to the official rules question form)
  • Q: Does Gray's Anatomy heal damage/horror? Or is it only considered to modify the amount of damage/horror healed by the original source of healing? In other words, can Vincent Lee and Carolyn Fern take it? A: The card itself does not heal damage/horror, it only modifies the amount of damage/horror healed by the original source. That said, Vincent and Carolyn can still take it, because we are ruling that still fulfills their deckbuilding options. [NB ArkhamDB deckbuilding has been adjusted to reflect this.]

  • Q: Does the "to a maximum of +3" on Gray's Anatomy mean that it is a maximum of +3 per target, or is across all uses of the ability. So can you use the ability on one enemy to have it take +3 damage, and then again on a different enemy to have it also take +3 damage. Or can you only use it on one enemy at a time? A: If you’re targeting enemies with Gray’s Anatomy, it imposes a maximum bonus of damage you can apply to that enemy “the next time [it] would be dealt damage this round.” It’s worded in such a way that while you could target the same enemy multiple times in a round with the ability, the most bonus damage you could deal to it with Gray’s would be +3 at a time. There is nothing preventing you from using Gray’s Anatomy on multiple enemies, you’d just have to perform the intellect test once per enemy, and keep track of how much bonus damage each enemy would take.

  • Q: Can you stack the effect of the action? I mean, doing the action twice choosing the same card could grant a +6? A: You can stack the effect, but only to a max of +3. The "max +3" applies across all instances of the ability (as well as across all copies of the card among all investigators). Once that damage or healing has been applied, you could theoretically use it again to get another +3 on a different healing/damage effect, but you couldn't use it twice in a row to get more than +3 to a single effect.

  • Q: On Gray's Anatomy, is the maximum on the number of times you can make a choice, or are you allowed to choose the same option more than 3 times? For example, if I test on an investigator and succeed by 6, am I allowed to choose healing 6 times (and boost the next heal by the maximum of 3), or do I have to choose healing 3 times and damage 3 times? A: You can choose the same option more than 3 times on Gray’s Anatomy, but the maximum bonus applied to the heal/damage dealt can only go up to +3 for that round.

Last updated
Reviews

Looks like we've got another -class boss killer! Here's a four-piece combo, which I offer as one way of abusing the power of this tome for virtually testless burst damage, keeping in mind the restrictions outlined in the FAQ above (i.e.: no excessive stacking to unleash a +12 attack or whatever). What you'll need in addition to this card:

  • The Raven Quill with "Living Quill" and "Spectral Binding" marked, the attached asset being Gray's Anatomy itself. The former upgrade saves you from AoO, while the latter ensures that you have your hands free while carrying the book around and using its . XP cost so far: 7 (5 for the book +2 for the Quill); both hand slots are still free at this point.

  • Occult Lexicon or Occult Lexicon (3). Obviously the upgraded version would be better, but with the difference amounting to 2 damage, you may just as well roll with the vanilla book if starved for experience (like on your way to Dunwich or Carcosa). XP cost in total: 10 (or still 7); hand slots required: 1.

----- Important side note: to unleash this combo, you need to hold at least one copy of Blood-Rite in your hand as well as two or three resources in the bank (two for the vanilla Lexicon, three for the upgrade)!!! -----

  • Ancient Stone (Knowledge of the Elders). As usual, you want to have as many secrets stacked here as possible, but seven seems a good number. Then again, since our damage output in this combo stems from three combined sources, there's no need to obsess over having more than seven secrets. In fact, in one go, you'll need only two or three, depending on whether you're using the vanilla or the upgraded Occult Lexicon. XP cost in total: 14 or 11 (depending on the lexicon); both hand slots are filled now.

So how do we pull this off after all this preparation?

  1. Move to the same location as the boss, then use Gray's Anatomy's , choosing the damage option, obviously. No worries, thanks to the raven's gift, you won't eat an AoO, meaning you may take this action right under the boss's nose! This is the test that you actually need to take --- and to pass to your satisfaction --- to make this combo work. That's why I wrote above that this is only VIRTUALLY testless damage. But testing your strongest stat against 1 shouldn't be this hard. Let's say you've aced the test, giving you the +3 damage we'll need in a second.

  2. You play Blood-Rite, which conveniently neither triggers an AoO nor requires a test. Depending on your version of the Occult Lexicon, you spend 2-3 resources to inflict the same number of damage. Added to this is the +3 from Gray's Anatomy, meaning you actually inflict 5-6 damage. :-)

  3. But wait, there's more! As part of the effect of Blood-Rite, you've just drawn cards, right? This triggers your Ancient Stone, meaning you spend some secrets to dish out another 2-3 damage (depending on how many cards you've drawn, which in turn depends on your version of the Occult Lexicon). This brings the damage count up to 7-9. And all of this reliably, i.e. without having to test against the presumably high stats of the boss. And this is even BEFORE the dedicated fighter(s) of your team has/have moved in to do their thing. If you're playing true solo, then the boss might already be dead now.

Although you need some 11-14 XP and several different cards to pull off this combo, I don't think it's too janky. All of the cards involved are strong also outside this particular setup, so by including them in your deck it's not like you'll get value solely out of this combo and never in other situations. And of course you try this combo only if you KNOW that there's a boss coming up. So I acknowledge this might be less manageable in blind playthroughs.

Finally, note that the damage you need to inflict to get the +3 bonus may come from any source. So, if you've moved to the boss's location via Shortcut, Pathfinder, Eon Chart, etc., or if Carson Sinclair has gifted you an additional action, or if you're Daisy Walker, you still have three actions to take at the start of this combo, which in itself requires two (or merely one, if Blood-Rite is played off of Farsight). After this combo, then, you have one left to use Gray's Anatomy once more as your final action. This is sure to benefit the fighters of your team. And again, since the boss is in all likelihood hard to hit, simply have your buddy use the of a Beat Cop or whatever to deal 4 "testless" damage! :-D

PS: Shoutout to the YT channel Rather Incoherent, which taught me the Ancient Stone-Blood-Rite combo à propos an overpowered Harvey Walters deck: www.youtube.com

EDIT: fixed the damage count under step 3. The correct totals are 7-9 damage (rather than 7-8).

Just like a reviewer above, I tried to use this card in a self-sustained fighter build, and it feels like the combo was specifically designed for these kind of builds, because everything just clicks with this one. I'll describe a somewhat different combination of cards that provides a lot more consistency and action compression but less burst potential. Daisy seems like the most effective choice for this combo since she gets a built-in extra action to use her newfound weapon. Here's what the core of this deck looks like.

  1. Gray's Anatomy is our bread and butter. I find it sufficient to only have one copy, because Research Librarian, Whitton Greene and The Raven Quill can all fetch it from anywhere, even from the discard pile.

  2. The Raven Quill is the enabler that both helps us find our book of choice and virtually grants it a weapon status by making it not provoke AoOs. The upgrades we want are "Living Quill" (to ignore AoOs), "Spectral Binding" (to free one hand for Daisy's signature weakness), "Mystic Vane" (not necessary, but since we want to succeed by 3 on our Gray's Anatomy tests to deal max damage, it will make it much more comfartable to do so, especially on standart) and "Supernatural Record" (to play the Anatomy from anywhere while also compressing an action).

  3. Ancient Stone (Knowledge of the Elders) is the source of damage that will be amplified by Gray's Anatomy. With just one secret spent and card drawn we can hit enemies consistently for 4 damage without ever directly attacking them. To find the stones as soon as possible also grab Whitton Greene, and to keep it full of sectets I'd also suggest Enraptured and Ariadne's Twine, but keep in mind that even 6 secrets, which I'd say is an average amount, can net you up to 24 damage.

  4. Empirical Hypothesis is what gives us actionless card draw to activate Ancient Stone and deal 1 damage from the Anient Stone + 3 from Anatomy's amplification. The best part is that the Hypothesis works amazingly well with no upgrades. Always choose "succeed by 3" condition because you're already looking to succeed by 3 on your Gray's Anatomy test, which will happen very often since you're testing at skill value of at least 7 against test difficulty of 1. If you have some extra XP, I also suggest taking "Alternative Hypothesis" and "Independent Variable" upgrades that will let you generate 2 evidence per turn instead of just 1 as long as you defeat an enemy, which is rather trivial to do with this build.

4.5. As a plan B in case of not drawing Empirical Hypothesis for the whole game you can take Ancestral Knowledge, which will provide you with 5 instances of 4 damage from the start of every scenario while also being a great card on its own.

With the combo set up, the process of annihilating enemies will look like this: 1) you choose an enemy at your location;

2) you initiate the ability on Gray's Anatomy and test (1), preferably succeeding by 3;

3) you put an evidence on your Empirical Hypothesis because you chose "succeed by 3" criteria at the start of the round;

4) you ready Empirical Hypothesis and choose "discard a treachery or enemy from play" criteria;

5) you spend an evidence from Empirical Hypothesis with its ability and draw a card;

6) you activate ability on Ancient Stone and deal 1 damage to the chosen enemy which gets bumped up to 4 with Gray's Anatomy amplification;

7) if that is enough to defeat the enemy (which is usually enough if the enemy is non-Elite), you exhaust Empirical Hypothesis and add another evidence to it.

This is a very consistent way to deal 4 damage in one action and up to 16 damage in a turn. Apart from consistency, this way of dealing damage has a number of advantages compared to traditional attacking. Firstly, you don't actually attack enemies and thus can't get retaliated. Sedondly, with test difficulty of 1 you can't really fail, barring the dreaded , so no tokens that trigger negative effects on failing can bother you. Thirdly, you draw a card every time you deal damage, keeping your hand full of cards. Finally, with the very same Gray's Anatomy you can also amplify healing if needed. This increases the value of Painkillers and Smoking Pipe, which suddenly heal 4 damage or 4 horror in exchange for just 1 horror or 1 damage respectively. Considering that you'll be drawing like crazy it might be a good idea to include 1 copy of each in your deck to never worry about dying.

Compared to the Occult Lexicon variation above, this combo only needs one action to deal damage, doesn't require to have Blood-Rite in hand, to spend resources or to discard cards. On the other hand, you can never deal more than 4 damage per attack, although you still can spend more evidence from Empirical Hypothesis and secrets from Ancient Stone to deal 1 damage for every draw if you desperately need it. Given that the majority of non-Elite enemies have 4 or less health I find my build's damage capabilities more than enough while being much more consistent. And if I do need to deal more, e.g. to a boss, I'll just spend more actions, comfortably dealing 4 damage with each attack.

I have tested a deck with this combo in true solo in Standalone Mode of Midnight Masks and crushed it with 3 turns and a couple of actions remaining, which is a crazy thing to do in solo Midnight Masks. Currenlty I'm trying to figure out the most XP-efficient way to upgrade into this build during a campaign, given that at 0 XP you can't fight at all or are very bad at it, but at ~30+ you're leagues ahead of any traditional fighting decks, e.g. big gun (as it always is now with the class). Anyway, just like Daisy with Abyssal Tome, which also got much stronger in The Scarlet Keys, seekers with their superior intellect once again invent a combo that proves that words hurt more than bullets.

adogface · 4
I love the deck idea! I actually theorycrafted the same combo in Joe because of guardian giving him access to benefits from killing enemies such as Glory or Evidence, but I think you are right that Daisy is probably even better, because of her 5 intellect to get clues when there are no ene — Valentin1331 · 53057
Enemies, and enraptured to refill the stone. I can’t wait to see your full deck guide on this because it looks very solid! — Valentin1331 · 53057
One other small addition: I think you could ready the hypothesis with the Ravens quill if you get that upgrade and get yet another charge on it to use as needed — dubcity566 · 108

I recently played through Scarlet Keys with a Gray's Anatomy-focused Joe Diamond deck, dual-wielding Survival Knives. Is it efficient? Absolutely not, but it's fun.

In a vacuum, one click for +3 damage on the next attack sounds great, but considering most basic weapons (and certainly any you spend XP on) deal two damage per attack, you're netting out to spending the same two actions to deal the same four damage, but the first action provokes opportunity attacks, you're required to spend a second action to inflict anything, and three actions only nets you 5 damage instead of 6. You can alleviate these by combining it with weapons and upgrades, but you're going to be sinking a lot of cards and XP into something objectively less efficient and flexible than a big stick, and you've already sunk 5xp on the book itself.

So where does it shine? Testless damage. Blood-Rites and Ancient Stones as mentioned in the other review, but my favorite is Alice Luxley. One action to set up with Grays, one action to investigate, get a clue and deal four damage to any enemy at your location. No ammo needed, no engaging enemies, just mashing your best skill and blasting things while you do it.

The (currently) Joe-exclusive Survival Knife combo is also effective, but very niche. Using Gray's on the third action and triggering the reaction in the enemy phase nets you 5 damage for a single action, but the stars have to align to set up that scenario. More often you start your turn engaged and are left to the usual Grays > Stab two-action combo, which is frustratingly inefficient against common 2-health enemies.

It should also be noted, if pairing with the The Raven Quill, that the Supernatural Record ability is XP-cheaper and more effective than actually buying a second copy of Gray's Anatomy. You effectively get three copies of Gray's in your deck, as well as the ability to pull them from your discard in the event that it gets Crypt Chilled or similar. The total resource cost is higher, but you're already paying that for the ability to avoid AoOs.

CombStranger · 233