Neutral
Asset

Blessed.

Cost: –. XP: 4.

Permanent. Limit 1 per investigator.

Before setting up each game, draw 3 random cards from the tarot deck and choose 1. Place the chosen card in front of you, in the upright position. Each other investigator ignores its effects. Shuffle the rest back into the tarot deck.

Allan Bednar
Return to the Circle Undone #13.
Observed
Reviews

A new permanent, with a rather hefty XP cost attached. The effects you get are a fairly varied, but there are a lot of interesting options available. Since the tarot only affects you rather than the group, it means that the overall effect may be lower. I've listed these out for general groups:

  • Health/Sanity - This gives you a slightly larger threshold to toy with. It can matter if you're playing it close, though other bonuses will generally help you avoid taking that damage in the first place.
    • You get +1 health.
    • You get +1 sanity.
    • After you reveal an during a skill test, you may heal 1 damage or 1 horror.
  • Deck Alteration - These may help smoothen out your deck a bit. They are effects that often don't matter that much sometimes, but may matter a whole lot more if you tend to go through much of your deck and hit weaknesses or downsides that you'd rather avoid.
    • You choose 1 basic weakness in your deck and remove it from the game (return it after the game ends).
    • The first time your deck would run out of cards, you may shuffle the bottom 10 cards of your discard pile back into your deck.
  • Setup Improvements - It's less consistent and more expensive than Another Day, Another Dollar or Studious, but the bonuses from these effects are a little higher in exchange - especially if you're playing a class that suddenly gains consistency that's desperately needed.
    • You begin the game with 3 additional resources.
    • You begin with 2 additional cards in your opening hand.
    • When the game begins, search your deck for an Ally asset, add it to your hand, and shuffle your deck.
    • When the game begins, you may play an asset from your hand at -2 cost.
    • During setup, you may take up to 2 additional mulligans.
    • During your first turn, you may take 2 additional actions.
  • Capacity Improvements - Hand size adjustment isn't relevant unless it is a major boost for your character. However, a bonus slot is a ridiculously useful tool, with the notable downside that you can't easily plan for it. Charisma and Relic Hunter are cheaper and more reliable tools for Allies and Accessories, but some characters could still use that bonus slot on top, and most characters won't go wrong with an extra Hand or Arcane slot available.
    • Increase your maximum hand size by 3.
    • You have 1 additional slot of a type you choose when the game begins.
  • Test Reliability - Is it important for you? Consider it. Is it not important to you? Don't. Note that unlike some cards, these bonuses apply to the first test each round, meaning is a reasonable pick for non-Mystics since it can help during the Mythos phase. Of note is that this category also includes the ability to avoid - and that can be a massive guarantee as well of a slightly different sort.
    • During the first test you perform each round, you get +1 .
    • During the first test you perform each round, you get +1 .
    • During the first test you perform each round, you get +1 .
    • During the first test you perform each round, you get +1 .
    • Once each act, when you reveal a token, you may cancel it and treat it as a 0 token instead.
  • Ignore this? Suuuuure... - These are effects that impact the global state, and therefore are ways of improving things for your whole team. The value depends on the scenario and on how close you're cutting it, but the effects are notable.
    • Cancel the first doom that would be placed on the final agenda of the game.
    • When the game begins, replace a token in the chaos bag with a 0 token. Swap the back after the game ends.
  • Permanent Improvements - If you get these early and they're relevant, the XP might more than pay for itself.
    • If you are not defeated during this game, you earn +2 experience during its resolution.
    • If you are not defeated during this game, you may remove 1 trauma of your choice during its resolution.

There's some luck in the draw of the tarot deck. However, it's worth noting that you draw 3 cards and pick the best of them. What are the odds of getting something that's worth 4 XP each time? You won't get a great result targeting a specific effect - you'll only have a 13% chance of finding it each game. However, it's not too hard to get to a position that feels about right.

Where does the threshold for reliability lay? It varies for different people, but I'd set my own tastes at around 90% - that is, as long as I'd get something worthwhile or better in 9 out of 10 shots here, it's worth it. That threshold actually lays at around 11 cards. 11 cards leads to about an 89% chance of getting something from that set. And the odds only improve further if you like more than that.

I'd say that most characters wouldn't want this for health/sanity/healing, don't need to shuffle their discards into their decks, only want boosts in 2 stats, don't care about hand size, and don't worry about trauma unless things are going poorly. That would be indicate 8 out of 22 cards would be 'whiffs'. However, that's still better than the odds I've set for myself - it's only about 4% of the time that there are only effects available that are 'subpar'. And those effects aren't bad - just not quite worth that XP. On the whole, I'd estimate most of the 'poor' effects are worth it if ill-fitting, noting the implicit savings are notable since you don't have to spend any draws, plays, actions, slots, or resources to get the benefit.

4 XP is still a notable cost, and it seems unlikely that this will be one of your first purchases. However, once you have enough wiggle room to experiment and upgrades become more incremental, it's worth looking through the list of effects and seeing if enough tarots seem worthwhile enough to justify the cost.

Ruduen · 623
I don't know, how the rules are, if you take Tarots for all. Are they also drawn before setting up the game? Can you choose to do this before picking your private one? If so, you could possibly adress them, like taking a healing one, if you get positive or negative effects from (not) being defeted. But I suppose, this is not the case? However, I think, if I go for this card, I would rather take it early than later. The Permanent keyword is the main power of this card and several effects are more powerful than comparible 3 XP permanents. If you draw the +2 XP on not being defeated early (and pull it off), you actually don't really spend 4 XP, just 2, and delay the spending of the other 2 for a scenario or two. Also, the more scenarios you get the bonus, the more likely it gets, that you on times get something really exciting for your investigator. — Susumu · 165
Outside of these cards, the Tarot Deck is used as an optional variant. However, the official uses of them always occurs prior to any other mission setup (or in the campaign-long case, campaign setup). If you're using the per-mission variants, the impact is minimal, since that can deal out both appropriate and inappropriate cards. However, if you're doing a campaign-long reading, that makes taking this a much larger strategic decision, since you're usually removing 8 cards from the pool. I didn't mention these in the list since they're still variants, so it's hard to say how often they will be used. — Ruduen · 623