Tommy Boy - A Tommy Muldoon Standard Deck

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None. Self-made deck here.
Inspiration for
A Tommy Muldoon protect 0 0 0 1.0

TheBlackHorror · 5985

Tommy Boy: A Tommy Standard Deck

This is the fifth in my "Standard Deck" series, where I create highly effective taboo-compliant decks for specific investigators, with a focus on the most recent Dream Eater investigators first. These decks are designed for 2 Players with Standard difficulty in mind, and assume you have a current card pool, but also include modifications for 3-4 players. Each deck will highlight the investigator's strengths, including both instructions on how to play the investigator and how to pilot the deck, with the aim of teaching you how they work.

Want to try the new Dream-Eater investigators, but are at a loss and don't know where to start?

Try one of my Standard Decks!

Have an Arkham event coming up and you need to bring a couple of decks, but don't have the time or brain space to build them all?

Try one of my Standard Decks! You can create quick standalone builds by following the Standalone recommendations at the end of each deck guide.

Imagine these as pre-fabricated Arkham Horror LCG decks that you can crack open and start playing with.

THE INVESTIGATOR

Tommy Muldoon

Role: Monster-Killer

Pair with: Clue-Getter

Strengths: Damage/Horror Soak, Asset Recursion, Lots of Resources

Weaknesses: Only above average Combat (), Action-Intensive, Card Draw

Modus Operandi: Tommy is the noble, self-sacrificing hero ready to throw himself (or rather, his friends and assets) under the bus to save his fellow investigators. With the ability to endlessly recycle old coats, faithful dogs, and stained teddy bears, you won't find another investigator more durable or downright masochistic than this young Knight of the Iron Horse, our Tommy Boy.

Tommy's 3 is nothing to sneeze at. This is perfectly adequate to resist the encounter deck and pass Willpower tests. Furthermore, he has access to several cards that can easily boost this to 4, 5, or even 6 (Police Badge, Brother Xavier, Peter Sylvestre, etc)!

His 3 is serviceable for occasionally investigating. With his enviable card access to cards like Evidence!, Interrogate, "Look what I found!", Winging It, and Sharp Vision, he can actually make a solid contribution to investigating if you need him to.

A of 4 is merely okay for a monster-killer Guardian, suggesting he is also meant to do something else--and that is: to suffer. While he can get by on 4 , you will want to equip him with assets that boost this to at least 5, preferably 6, but in the first scenario or two he should be fine until you can afford a leveled Beat Cop, Ace of Swords, and/or Jessica Hyde.

Tommy rides a motorcycle for a reason. His 2 is not going to be doing much for him, but it's still twice as much as Leo Anderson's 1 ! However, if you're playing a campaign or scenario in which agility is important, Tommy has access to decent cards that can help him out, most notably Peter Sylvestre, who also boosts him to 4 ! That's not to mention Trench Coat and Track Shoes (though I can't really recommend this one).

Tommy's Investigator Ability

Tommy's special investigator ability is fairly straight forward. When an asset of his is defeated (important!), he gets resources equal to the total amount of damage and horror on that asset, then shuffles that asset back into his deck. It seems simple, but there are 4 important elements to clarify:

  • It must be an Asset you control.
  • It must be Defeated, which is different than getting Discarded. Assets discarded by effects such as Crypt Chill or Rookie Mistake do not trigger Tommy's ability!
  • You get resources equal to the total amount of Horror and Damage on that asset. That means the more total damage and horror soak on a defeated asset, the bigger the payout .
  • Shuffle that defeated asset back into your deck. Hence, the recursion. This means that Tommy never wants to avoid discarding these assets whenever possible, preferring to have them defeated by damage/horror so he can constantly recycle them. That also means card draw can be a big issue for Tommy.

    IMPORTANT: Remember that those defeated assets get shuffled back into Tommy's deck--they don't go to his discard pile. This is so easy to forget!!

Elder Sign Ability ()

Tommy's Elder Sign Ability is pretty solid. Not only is a +2 really good, it also allows him to move damage and horror to his assets, which can in turn trigger his investigator ability. This can be really important for dealing with and managing horror--especially direct horror.

Investigator Signature Cards: Becky and Rookie Mistake.

Becky

Mark Harrigan has Sophie, Tommy has Becky, his dearest beloved. Becky is arguably the most powerful signature weapon, though it does take up two hand slots, which can be highly inconvenient.

Becky basically allows Tommy to use his special investigator ability to convert resources gained from defeated assets into ammo on Becky. The ability allows you to choose how many resources to take as resources and how many to put on Becky as ammo. However, Becky can churn through bullets like there's no tomorrow, and since it's 2-handed, Tommy cannot also have another weapon option in hand. For this reason, you typically don't want to play Becky early on (though sometimes you don't have a choice).

Generally, Becky is a latter-game card. Tommy uses the first half of the game to set up his allies and other soaking assets to get them in rotation, racking up a supply of Resources, then somewhere near the midway point converts to All Becky, All the Time. Then he uses his recursion to keep Becky full of ammo--which is important, because it only comes with 2! For this reason a lot of people focus their deck building and upgrade paths on getting Becky into play and keeping her fully loaded. Part of mastering Tommy is learning when he can change over from Setup Mode to Becky Mode.

Beware about putting Becky into play too early: you may find yourself either broke, or needing to discard Becky to put another weapon in play!

I have to point out that due to Tommy's low card draw and constant recursion, there's a good chance he will never see Becky in any given scenario. I've gone 5 games in a row without ever seeing it!

Rookie Mistake

Rookie Mistake is a wonderfully themed card. If you haven't seen it yet in a scenario, you have to play with it constantly in mind. But sometimes this card will sneak up on you and wipe Tommy's board--and that's when you know you've made a Rookie Mistake.

Because of this weakness Tommy likes to assign as much damage and horror to a single asset as possible, to minimize the number of assets Rookie Mistake can wipe out at a single stroke. The good news is, due to Tommy's low card draw and constant recursion, he may never see this!

Card Draw & Recursion

Tommy suffers from poor card draw, which is only exacerbated by his special ability that shuffles defeated assets back into his deck (called "Recursion"--the ability to recur the same cards over and over again). Once Tommy's board is fully set up, the number of cards in his deck can easily stay constant. You may find you keep drawing the same few recurred assets over and over again, which means he is not drawing other cards, like Becky.

For this reason, Tommy not only likes cards that give him card draw, he cannot depend on seeing any one card, so it is wise to have 2 copies and possibly other substitutes of any cards he may want to see.

A Man of 3 Builds

You will find that you build and/or upgrade Tommy in one of three ways:

Big Money Tommy

In this build Tommy likes to convert his allies and assets into resources to spend on expensive cards like Dynamite Blast, Lightning Gun, .45 Thompson, and Agency Backup, and/or invest in skill boosters like Physical Training (which pairs nicely with Well Prepared) and Keen Eye. This requires some XP-intensive upgrades, but can be big and flashy.

Masochistic Tommy

In this build Tommy uses cards to take on all the hurt from other investigators These include cards like Tetsuo Mori, Brother Xavier, "Let me handle this!", Self-Sacrifice, "Fool me once...", Heroic Rescue, and especially Safeguard--which ensures Tommy is always close by to take those hits. This can much easier to pull off in 3-4 players, where there are more available targets to rescue! However, if Tommy is paired with a Clue-Getter with access to Pathfinder, that investigator can zoom around the map using up to 2 copies of Pathfinder and maybe even Shortcut, scooping up clues, while Tommy just uses Safeguard to stick by their side, absorb hits, and kill all the monsters.

Becky Dearest

In this build Tommy focuses his cards on finding Becky, upgrading her, and keeping her loaded and in play with cards like Prepared for the Worst, Extra Ammunition, Well-Maintained, Reliable, Stick to the Plan, etc. This is a popular solo option, since in solo there tend to be fewer enemies, so Tommy can easily maintain a supply of Becky Bullets while using his investigator ability to top off his resource pool.

We will talk about this in more detail in the Upgrade section, since that is where this will matter most for this deck. This deck is a general all-around starting point for any of these, focused particularly for 2 player.

THE DECK

Premise: Set up Tommy with several assets he can recur to keep Becky loaded and ready for action.

DECK PILOTING INSTRUCTIONS:

Mulligan and Opening Hand

You want your opening hand to consist of (in this order):

(1) Any weapon besides Becky. If you do have Becky in your opening hand, KEEP IT! You may never see it again!

(2) An ally. Guard Dog helps you kill monsters while also contributing to Tommy's recursion engine, while Tetsuo Mori helps soak other investigators' damage and horror, and also helps you find a weapon.

(3) One or more other recurrable assets, such as Cherished Keepsake](/card/03114), Leather Coat, Something Worth Fighting For, or True Grit. Ideally you will want 3 assets in hand: an ally, a horror soak, and a health soak, in that order.

(4) If you are paired with an investigator with fragile health or sanity, look for Solemn Vow. It's Fast, so it doesn't bog you down on your opening setup turn, and the first turn of the game is the one time you are guaranteed to be at the same location as your fellow investigator. Just having this in their play area will affect the choices you both make when dealing with treacheries, and could quite possibly help you win the scenario.

You want a weapon down to kill monsters and protect your buddies. Typically 4 isn't quite enough to do the job on it's own.

Next you will want some recursion as early as possible. Allies are the most important, followed by horror soak, then health soak, in that order. Your first action will probably be nothing but setup, but don't be afraid to set up slowly over a few rounds. Tommy is very action-intensive, so sometimes you need to drip-feed his engine.

How to Use the Cards in this Deck

Tommy is all about protection and turning his assets into cash. Since playing assets can become action-intensive over the course of a scenario, the idea behind this deck is to make use of the assets he has in play most efficiently, even if that means taking opportunity attacks on Guard Dog to put other assets, like Leather Coat, into play. Aside from Scene of the Crime, there is no clue acquisition in this deck. Everything else is focused on doing his job: killing monsters and taking hits.

Ideally you will want a weapon in hand while Tommy gets his asset rig set up. A complete setup is having an ally, and at least one horror and one damage soak asset in play. Once he is fully setup and has generated a nice little pile of resources (usually between 6-10), you will want to get Becky into play, using Tommy's recursion to fill Becky instead of getting resources. This will allow you to convert nearly all the resources Tommy generates from his special investigator ability into Becky Bullets to keep him going at full throttle.

The idea here is to get the best value out of each of your asset soaks. Cherished Keepsake and Leather Coat are both 0 cost, which helps Tommy start accruing resources for more expensive cards later on, like the .45 Thompson.

Constantly playing cards is a strain on Tommy's action economy, so don't be afraid to take Attacks of Opportunity to put weapons or assets into play--especially if you have Guard Dog out! Remember: you will see those assets again--they get reshuffled into Tommy's deck!

Important: When putting an asset into play would trigger an Attack of Opportunity, you must assign damage and horror from that attack before your asset hits the table. That means you can't play a Guard Dog to initiate an Attack of Opportunity, then assign damage from that Attack of Opportunity to that same Guard Dog!

  • Survival Knife: This is a cheeky one-of, because you may not need it, and it pairs nicely with Enchanted Blade. Due to his recursion, Tommy can take some serious hits. So with this out, Tommy can move into a location or engage an enemy as his last action. The damage/horror from the attack in the enemy phase will hit his assets, and then Tommy can turn around and knife them in the back with the force of an upgraded .45 Automatic. Combine it with Guard Dog and you can easily deal 3 damage to an enemy on the backswing. This means you can deal 6 damage during Tommy's turn with an Enchanted Blade (7 with a Vicious Blow thrown in) and another 3 damage with Survival Knife and Guard Dog--that's 10 damage in a single round!

  • .45 Thompson: Look at this weapon, then look at Becky. Yes, that's right. The .45 Thompson is basically another copy of Becky, but one in which you pay the resources cost up front (and with limited ammo of course). If you can't find Becky, whip out your Thompson ("that's what she said"). Tommy is one of the few investigators who can actually afford a Tommy gun! It has a big advantage over Becky in that you can target it with Scrounge for Supplies! While not included in this deck, if you're going for a Big Money Tommy, you can combine this with a cheeky Act of Desperation for extra damage and essentially all your money back.Then you can Scrounge for Supplies to take it back into hand!

  • Cherished Keepsake: This is one of your two staple asset soaks, aside from Leather Coat. It's free to play and takes up the Guardian's little-used Accessory slot. Play it, use it, abuse it. Rinse and repeat. Because this card does not cost resources, it allows Tommy to build up a pool or resources by getting it defeated and activating Tommy's special investigator ability over and over again. Out of all of Tommy's asset soaks, this one is usually as priority since it protect Tommy's low sanity.

  • Leather Coat: This is the other of your two staple asset soaks, aside from Cherished Keepsake. It's free to play and takes up the body slot, which isn't that bad, except it also could compete with Bandolier and, later on, Flamethrower. Like the Cherished Keepsake, get this in play, throw all the damage you can at it to get it into the resource laundering cycle (pun intended). The Leather Coat works great in tandem with Guard Dog, and not only because the dog likes Tommy's old clothes. Assign only 1 damage to Guard Dog to get it to trigger, and place any overflow damage on Leather Coat.

  • Guard Dog: voted Tommy's Best Friend and Most Expendable Ally in the same year, Guard Dog is possibly Tommy's second signature card. When Tommy assigns damage to Guard Dog (which Tommy likes to do), Guard Dog bites back for 1 testless damage. And then, when the Guard Dog is defeated, it gets shuffled back into Tommy's deck to use and re-use again! The greatest thing is, Guard Dog is not unique, so once you get Charisma, you can have 2 in play at once! Use Tommy's other assets to help you get the most out of Guard Dog. Assign only 1 damage to Guard Dog at a time and let your other assets soak up the extra so you can get more bite for your bark.

    Do not underestimate the power of testless damage. Between Guard Dog and Beat Cop, Tommy can dish out some serious damage. Just imagine a turn with 3 hits of an Enchanted Blade and some Vicious Blows, then a Survival Knife attack, Guard Dog and Beat Cop testless damage. That's like...(counts fingers on both hands, then pulls off sock to start counting toes)...12 damage in a turn?

  • Tetsuo Mori: This is Tommy's beat cop partner. Tetsuo Mori does 3 different things for Tommy: (1) he provides a 2 health / 2 sanity soak; (2) he helps protect other investigators at your location, such as a 1 Finn Edwards or a 5 health Daisy Walker; 3) when he is defeated, he helps Tommy Muldoon find Becky, or any other weapon for that matter, from either his deck or his discard pile. That last part is very important, since anything in Tommy's discard pile is basically lost to him. And that can hurt once he starts getting his key soak assets discarded. I should note that Scrounge for Supplies, which can get your other level 0 cards, cannot grab Becky--signature cards are considered to have no level, and therefore are NOT level 0. Tetsuo Mori can also help your fellow investigator at your location find a much-needed item asset--The Gold Pocket Watch anyone? You will find that Tetsuo Mori does a surprising amount of work!

  • Enchanted Blade: It's no coincidence that we got Enchanted Blade close to the time Machete got tabooed. It only takes up a single hand slot (and an arcane slot, but who cares about that?), which means it pairs nicely with Survival Knife, like an epee and a main gauche. At the very least, this offers a small bump of +1 . However, when you attack with it, you can choose to supercharge it, giving it an additional +1 (for a total of +2) and +1 damage. You get three of these charges, so use them wisely. Typically this is Tommy's main stand-in weapon until he's ready to drop a .45 Thompson or the Beckster.

  • Solemn Vow: This is a good card. Period. Let's review: 1) it's Fast. Check. 2) it has icons. Check. Oh and 3), it lets other investigators at your location move damage and horror from cards they control (including their investigator and assets they control, such as allies) to a card Tommy controls. This allows Tommy to simultaneously heal and protect a fellow investigator while also helping him recycle his own assets! And, if you don't actually need Solemn Vow, you can commit it for it's almost universally useful Willpower icons. Wow!

    Your investigator card is considered to be a "card you control"!

  • Something Worth Fighting For: This is basically a supplement or 3rd copy of Cherished Keepsake. It also helps that other investigators at Tommy's location can assign horror onto it. Due to Tommy's low card draw, including too few asset soaks can really cripple him if he doesn't draw them, or if they start getting discarded. You'll like this card. Trust me. You won't regret it.

  • True Grit: Like Something Worth Fighting For, this is also a supplement or 3rd copy of Leather Coat that other investigators at Tommy's location can assign damage to. While Tommy has lots of Health, typically his fellow clue-getting investigators do not, so having a place for squishy investigators like Luke Robinson or Daisy Walker to pass damage can be a literal life-saver! Due to Tommy's low card draw, including too few asset soaks can really cripple him if he doesn't draw them, or if they start getting discarded. True Grit is extremely useful, and allows Tommy to make better use of reactive cards like Guard Dog and Survival Knife.

  • Lucky!: Tommy's a lucky guy. This is such a good card it's hard not to include it whenever you can. This helps Tommy pass some clutch tests. In a high XP campaign, you could also consider upgrading into Lucky!, which can give him some much-needed card draw.

  • Prepared for the Worst: This helps Tommy find the weapon he needs, when he needs it--but especially Becky. Keep in mind that if you upgrade into Versatile, that can seriously diminish the chances of seeing a weapon with this card. Prepared for the Worst is Tactic-traited, so it can be placed on Stick to the Plan if you so choose to upgrade into it.

  • Scene of the Crime: Tommy doesn't mind sitting at a location with enemies, so giving him a small boost in efficient clue-getting power can really add to your investigator team's tempo, without the hassle of using pesky hand slots (looking at you, Flashlight). I generally include this in most Guardian decks whenever I can.

  • Scrounge for Supplies: Want to see Tommy fall flat on his face? Me neither! The last thing Tommy wants is to see his precious recursion assets fall into the discard pile. If too many find there way there, Tommy can be crippled. Enter Scrounge for Supplies, which allows him to grab any level 0 card in his discard pile and put it in his hand. Hello Guard Dog, why were sleeping in the trash? This card also has the added benefit of giving Tommy another way to grab weapons or the assets he needs.

    You cannot grab Becky with Scrounge for Supplies. Investigator signature cards are not considered to have a level--therefore Becky is NOT level 0!

  • Daring: Tommy is brave and daring. He's going to be killing monsters anyway, so why not add to those tests? If he somehow fails and get retaliated against, well, that's just fine with Tommy! The best part is, regardless of whether you pass or fail, you get to draw a card at the end of the test!

  • Steadfast: He's brave, he's Daring, but he's also Steadfast. With Tommy's damage and horror soaking ability, he will usually have a lot of health and sanity to spare, making Steadfast a reliable and versatile skill card. You should almost always get or icons out of this. But even 2 ain't bad!

  • Vicious Blow: A Guardian staple, this just helps Tommy get more bang for his buck and increase his (much-needed) action efficiency.

Adjustments for 3-4 Players

I'm not going to lie, I think Tommy shines brightest with 3-4 players. He is better able to incorporate cards that feed his special investigator ability. When subbing out cards, I recommend starting with Scene of the Crime, Steadfast, and Daring, since in higher player counts you're more likely to have other investigators who can help you with icons. Below are some cards to consider:

  • An extra .45 Thompson: With more players, comes more enemies. Since the Enchanted Blade has only limited charges, you're going to need some more guns--big guns.

  • An extra True Grit and Something Worth Fighting For: if Tommy is going to take more hits, he will need more soaks. Plus these two cards have the added benefit of allowing other investigators at Tommy's location to assign damage/horror to them, and do not take up the precious body or accessory slot.

  • First Watch: this is the single best protection card out there. Especially at 4 players, every Guardian who can should take this. Always.

  • "Let me handle this!": this is a good way to protect other investigators and Tommy will have many more opportunities to play it at 3-4 players. It allows him to test potentially bad cards like Rotting Remains at 5! NOTE: You will not have many opportunities to play this in 2 player, since both investigators often have to split up. However, if you are going to go the Safeguard + Pathfinder route, consider including "Let me handle this!"!

  • Self-Sacrifice: this not only allows Tommy to take hits for other investigators (like tests for Finn Edwards), and regardless of whether you pass or fail, it also lets him draw 2 cards! NOTE: You will not have many opportunities to play this in 2 player, since both investigators often have to split up. However, if you are going to go the Safeguard + Pathfinder route, consider including Self-Sacrifice!

  • Taunt: this is a great way to pull a bunch of enemies off every investigator, and Tommy can take some hits. Just make sure you have a plan to deal with them.

  • Teamwork: if you want to get really cheeky and you're playing Big Money Tommy, this card can be a nice way to hand out resources to your fellow investigators.

ALTERNATIVE CARDS

If you are having to build multiple decks from the same cardpool or you want to make some adjustments to the deck to accommodate more investigation, take a look below at some alternative cards. They are separated by function (Combat / Investigation / Other / Safeguard Tommy).

Combat

This deck looks a little lean on combat, and you would be right. While Tommy can find and recur his weapons with Prepared for the Worst and Scrounge for Supplies, he has more than you would think. But some campaigns or scenarios just call for more guns. Scene of the Crime is probably the card you will want to cut first when subbing in additional combat cards.

  • Another .45 Thompson: It's one of the most powerful level 0 weapons out there and Tommy can afford it. It's basically another copy of Becky anyway, except you pay the cost upfront. He can also grab this back with a Scrounge for Supplies. If you want some additional fun you can pair it with Act of Desperation to get your money back so you can play another one!

  • .45 Automatic: If you need a lot of guns, consider including this. Tommy can afford it and it has 4 ammo. It also pairs nicely with Act of Desperation.

  • Beat Cop: if you find Tommy's attack value is too low, consider adding one or two of these in. It grants him a combat boost and Tommy can recur them! However, I don't typically use the level 0 Beat Cop in Tommy because it's ability requires you to discard it, which does NOT trigger Tommy's special investigator ability. However, definitely get the upgraded Beat Cop!

Investigation/Clues

Tommy's 3 puts him in a pretty good place for finding clues, so here are a few cards to boost his clue-acquisition, if needed:

  • Evidence!: you'll recognize this card from your very first game with Roland Banks. It's still an efficient way to grab clues.

  • Flashlight: nothing beats a good flashlight. Just ask any beat cop on night shift. This has the downside of occupying a hand slot, which can make timing when you play Becky and your .45 Thompson trickier. Generally you'll want your Flashlight out in the early half of the scenario and Becky out in the latter half. However, the good news is Survival Knife and Enchanted Blade are both one-handed weapons!

  • "Look what I found!": Tommy's access to has a lot of perks, such as access to this card. Tommy has the optimal value to trigger this easily.

  • Alice Luxley: don't laugh. Hear me out. If you are really pinched for investigation, Alice Luxley might be your best friend. Alice bumps Tommy up to 4 , works well with all the other investigation cards that "discover clues" (Scene of the Crime, "Look what I found!", Evidence!, etc),and she can be recurred! Furthermore, Tommy, out of any investigator, doesn't mind taking opportunity attacks. With a Guard Dog and Alice Luxley out in play, that opportunity attack could mean dealing 2 testless damage to an enemy WHILE discovering a clue!

  • Winging It: if you are leaning into more clue acquisition, take a long, hard look at this card. Low-shroud locations tend to have more clues than high-shroud locations, so this can be an efficient way to suck up clues. Plus, if you still fail, it will help you play "Look what I found!".

Protection

Tommy excels in protection. The problem is, to use most protection cards, it requires the Guardian to be at the same location as their fellow investigator. But in 2-player, the investigators often have to split up, making most of these dead cards. To really get the best use out of them requires some specialized deck building, which is why most of these cards are not included in this basic deck build. However. if you are going to pair Tommy with a squishy Seeker who can vacuum up clues, you can achieve a high tempo if Tommy can stick by their side and block some of the treacheries and all the enemies they draw. How do you do this? Upgrade into Safeguard and have the seeker grab movement cards like Shortcut, Shortcut, and Pathfinder. This will ensure Tommy can use his protection cards to the greatest adantage.

  • Another copy of Something Worth Fighting For: can really help out your fellow investigator with fragile sanity, like Tony Morgan, Finn Edwards, Roland Banks, etc.

  • Another copy of True Grit: can really help out your fellow squishy investigator with delicate health, like Daisy Walker, Luke Robinson, Sefina Rousseau, etc.

  • "Let me handle this!": the encounter deck is designed to slow and hamper investigators, so if Tommy can steal those cards away from the Clue-Getter, that leaves them free to do what they do best--get clues. And that's how you win the game.

  • Self-Sacrifice: Tommy can soak some hits, so this is a great added layer of protection for your fellow investigator. Think of a potentially lethal treachery like Grasping Hands on an especially vulnerable Seeker like Daisy Walker. This also helps feeds Tommy's recursion engine while ALSO giving him some incredible (and much-needed) card draw.

Other

Tommy has a lot of interesting combos open to him. Here are a few other cards you may want to consider including, depending on your tastes, card pool availability, and campaign.

  • Fine Clothes: Tommy's formal wear for the annual Arkham Police Department gala. It's cheap, it provides some damage and horror soak, Tommy can recur it, and it helps him in valuable parley tests! Consider this as a good alt for Leather Coat, or another asset to include. It only costs 1, so if you can get it defeated with a damage and a horror (which usually isn't hard), then you can turn a tidy profit of 100%!

  • Take Heart: don't look at Emergency Cache--look at Take Heart. This not only gives Tommy additional resources, more importantly, it gives him valuable card draw.

  • Trusted: this card is Fast, which is very important, and essentially beefs up your allies' damage and horror soak by 1 each. At a cost of 1 resource to play and no actions, this is essentially a way to increase the efficiency of Tommy's recursion engine. It's especially good for Beat Cop, since it allows Tommy to use the testless damage one more time.

  • Venturer: let me sell you on this guy. He can recharge Flashlight, .45 Thompson, and Becky, and once his usefulness is done, Tommy can get him defeated so he can recur him later. This is a great card for a Becky Dearest or Big Money Tommy build.

UPGRADES

Knowing what you want to do as Tommy will help guide you in your upgrades. He has a lot of options, so I have listed general upgrades first, then separated more specialized upgrades into the Big Money, Masochist, and Becky Dearest Tommy builds. You don't have to pursue any one of these play styles to acquire the upgrades found there. The separation is designed to help you find cards for the kind of thing you want to do with your Tommy deck.

The most important things to look for when upgrading Tommy is Action Compression, which is any card that helps him do what he needs to do in fewer actions (example: Ever Vigilant). This is a major weakness in Tommy, so anything you can do to shore it up will make him much stronger.

As a general rule, I would advise upgrading into Beat Cop x2 first, then Ever Vigilant x2.

Warning: Tommy's recursion ability and low card drawn mean that you may never see any upgrade card you purchase--ever. Aim for consistency first over bomb cards.

I would also advise not spending your XP on a lot of high-end weapons as your first picks. Tommy is unique in that he has access to Scrounge for Supplies, which specifically targets level 0 cards--and that means weapons. Since you can basically use Scrounge for Supplies as a way to reload weapons like the .45 Thompson, you want to be careful about eliminating these targets in his deck. Plus Tommy gets a lot of mileage out of testless damage through means like Guard Dog, Beat Cop, Aquinnah, and Agency Backup.

General

These are some all-around good upgrades for Tommy, regardless of how you build his deck.

  • Beat Cop: this should be your first two upgrades. Why? First, this gives Tommy a much-needed +1 . Second, this gives Tommy testless damage. And since the Beat Cop damages himself, it makes him much easier to get defeated. The 3/2 damage/horror soak also means that Tommy can turn a small profit when the Beat Cop gets defeated. Two copies of Beat Cop give Tommy a way to recycle a source of testless damage.

  • Brute Force: this is another way Tommy can dish out some incredibly efficient damage, AND it can be combined with Vicious Blow for a potential 5-damage--that packs quite a punch! At 1 xp, it's not a hard sell.

  • Charisma: This is a pretty obvious upgrade staple for Tommy if you are planning on having 6+ allies in his deck (which is very possible). You probably will not need more than one copy.

  • Ever Vigilant: Tommy has lots of assets he needs to play, which means he spends a lot of actions putting them into play. That's where Ever Vigilant comes in. The resource discount is merely icing on the cake. The real purpose of this card is action compression. Over the course of a scenario Tommy will spend several rounds setting up, and Ever Vigilant lets him do it faster. Even better, it is Tactic-traited, which means it can be put on Stick to the Plan for Tommy's opening setup turn!

  • Lucky!: if you have a lot of XP to spend, take a second look at the leveled version of Lucky!. This gives Tommy some much-needed card draw and makes his deck overall faster and more consistent.

  • Marksmanship: if Tommy isn't using Safeguard to follow his fellow investigator around, then Marksmanship starts to look pretty tasty. This is a good way to deal additional damage and cover your fellow investigator--even when Tommy's next door. Probably not Tommy's first pick as an upgrade, but something to keep in mind if you need to increase Tommy's damage output.

  • Mk 1 Grenades: this is a great way to get higher damage output without taking up precious hand slots. It's like a smaller Dynamite Blast with 3 uses--perfect for taking down Swarming enemies!

  • Stick to the Plan: it's pricey, but it gives something extremely valuable to Guardians: consistency. Especially in an investigator with low card draw like Tommy, Stick to the Plan starts in play and ensures you have a few possibly life-saving cards at hand. Some great candidates to stick this card include Prepared for the Worst, Ever Vigilant, Extra Ammunition, and Dynamite Blast.

  • The Red-Gloved Man: this card is incredible in Tommy. First, he's Fast--that's important in an action-starved Tommy. Second, he boosts two of Tommy's skills to 6 (6 anyone?). Third, he only costs 2 resources, but has 4 health and 4 sanity. That means if you can get him defeated while he is out, he will net Tommy 6 resources (!!!) AND--here's the best part--when The Red-Gloved Man gets defeated, he gets shuffled back into Tommy's deck instead of going to the discard pile! Wow! This means that if Tommy played The Red-Gloved Man before he has taken any actions at a location with an enemy that deals 1 damage and 1 horror (which is quite common), Tommy can set his to 6, and investigate at base 6 on all three actions, incurring 3 opportunity attacks for a total of 3 damage and 3 horror, which he places on The Red-Gloved Man. During the enemy phase, the enemy hits again, killing The Red-Gloved Man and giving Tommy 8 resources or ammo for Becky. Get 2 of these and recycle them endlessly for the ultimate Tommy shenanigans (Tommanigans?).

  • Versatile: I'm not going to tell you this is a great card to get, but under certain circumstances...it can be! This is great if you want to throw in a cheeky Leo De Luca, whose additional action per turn can turn Tommy into an absolute powerhouse by nearly eliminating his primary weakness--not enough actions. Throw in 2 copies of Guts and Overpower, skill cards Tommy is likely to use and which automatically replace themselves when he succeeds, to mitigate the increased deck size, and you have it made. DISCLAIMER: due to how Tommy works, you may NEVER see Leo De Luca, but when you do, it's fantastic. Also, the increased deck size can make it harder for Tommy to find his much needed soaks. Just keep that in mind. This upgrade CAN make Tommy's deck worse.

  • Vicious Blow: this is an upgrade that gives you more bang for your buck. A staple in any Monster-Killer deck that has access to it.

  • The Big Guns: like any good Monster-Killer, Tommy can benefit from having some big guns. I'm talking about Flamethrower, Lightning Gun, M1918 BAR, .45 Thompson, and .45 Automatic. Remember: Becky requires both hands and is sufficient (and I'd argue, more consistent) than any of these. Plus Becky does not have the high XP price tag. So think very carefully before adding additional 2-handed weapons such as Lightning Gun and especially Flamethrower, which also takes up a precious body slot. If anything, consider replacing some of the weapons already in the deck, especially .45 Thompson.

BIG MONEY TOMMY

Big Money Tommy uses his resource-generating engine to pay for big bomb cards as well as some stat boosters.

  • Agency Backup: there are few investigators who can afford the cost of Agency Backup, and fewer still who can use and abuse it. Like Beat Cop, Agency Backup's special ability helps Tommy step closer to getting it defeated. If you can manage to defeat it with 4 damage and 4 horror, Tommy gets 8 resources back--making it an efficient investment! Also, like Brother Xavier and Tetsuo Mori, Agency Backup can be assigned damage/horror dealt to other investigators at Tommy's location, making it even easier to get defeated. Furthermore, Agency Backup gets shuffled back into Tommy's deck to be used and re-abused again. If you can manage two copies of Agency Backup, then Tommy can potentially recycle both of them infinitely over the course of the scenario! Also, they are not unique, which means with Charisma you can have both in play at the same time.

  • Dynamite Blast: Tommy can afford to make a big boom, and what better way than with Dynamite Blast? This is a great way to eliminate a lot of enemies (especially those with Swarming) without having to make a test. It's also a Tactic, which means it can be attached to Stick to the Plan.

  • Flare: need to find that key ally, like Agency Backup or even your Versatiled Leo De Luca? If you're willing to spend the XP for the Exile ability, consider Flare. At worst, it provides another way to deal extra damage.

  • Keen Eye: sometimes Big Money Tommy has lots of cash sitting around. Make good use of to pay for stat boosters in Tommy's two best stats with Keen Eye. As a Permanent, this card begins in play, meaning it is not in Tommy's deck, polluting his card draw. It is always there when you need it...and the effect last until the end of the phase!

  • Lightning Gun: if you know you're going to need to kill some big baddies, consider Lightning Gun. With only 3 ammo, you will have to deploy it strategically, but it does work nicely with Act of Desperation. If you're going this route, consider including Venturer to get the most out of this big boy.

  • Physical Training: this is another stat booster that can substitute as a skill card if needed. This is best paired with Well Prepared, which can give Tommy a static +2 Willpower or Combat once each turn--twice if you have two copies of Well Prepared in play.

  • Police Badge: this takes up the precious Accessory slot, but is fortunately only a temporary card that boosts Tommy to 4 while it is in play. The ability to take 2 additional actions is hard to put a price one. Plus, it is Item-traited, which means Tetsuo Mori can help Tommy find it. Besides, where would Tommy be without his Police Badge?

  • Well Prepared: most targets for Well Prepared only have 1 icon. So if you do go for this upgrade, you will want to make sure you have cards with at least double icons in your deck, such as Physical Training, Flamethrower, or even The Black Cat. Becky is always a great target with icons.

MASOCHIST TOMMY

Masochist Tommy takes all of the encounter deck's hits and abuse meant for his fellow investigators.

  • Aquinnah: she is The Forgotten Daughter because everyone always forgets about her! Aquinnah is an expensive Guard Dog with some potentially hard-hitting power. If you are playing 3-4 players, really consider Aquinnah. There will be a lot more enemies on the table, making her ability much more likely to fire. Plus, she only takes 1 horror to activate her ability, regardless of the damage being dealt. At worst she is a fat horror soak and only 1 XP!

  • Brother Xavier: he is so good for Tommy, it's hard to know where to begin. First, he bumps Tommy up to 4 . Second, he can be assigned damage/horror dealt to other investigators at his location, making him ideal for protecting your fellow investigators. Third, when he is defeated, he has a potential payout of 6 resources AND deals 2 damage to an enemy at his location. And for Tommy, that also means Brother X gets shuffled back into his deck to return another day. Did I mention he's only 1 XP?

  • Bulletproof Vest: don't underestimate powerful soaks, even if they do cost resources and XP. Tommy is already going to spend a lot of actions on putting assets into play, so cards like Bulletproof Vest that can soak twice as much damage as a Leather Coat can save Tommy a lot of actions over the long run. And unlike other investigators, once the Bulletproof Vest is defeated, Tommy will likely see it again! Consider a Bulletproof Vest if a Masochistic Tommy has to protect a fragile investigator with 5 Health, like Daisy Walker or Sefina Rousseau.

  • Elder Sign Amulet: basically the same as a Bulletproof Vest for horror, the Elder Sign Amulet can be a real life saver to your fellow investigators with fragile or even traumatized sanity. Consider Elder Sign Amulet to protect the fragile sanity of suggestible investigators like Finn Edwards or Tony Morgan. They can thank you later. And again, unlike other investigators, Tommy has the potential to play and re-play and re-play yet again the same Elder Sign Amulet several times in a single scenario, making it a much better value for him than other investigators.

  • "Fool me once...": a great pick for 3-4 players. Like First Watch, this is a way to protect the most vulnerable investigators from getting KO'ed by the encounter deck. On a practical level, this wards against treacheries with a powerful knockout punch, such as Ancient Evils, Rotting Remains, or Grasping Hands. The power of "Fool me once..." magnifies significantly with each added investigator at the table, since that increases the number of encounter cards you will draw each turn, and therefore the likelihood of seeing the same painful treacheries over and over again.

  • Heroic Rescue: while the level 0 Heroic Rescue is hard to pull off, especially in 2-player, the leveled version makes cost to play free while also allowing you to target investigators at connecting locations. This is the perfect card to help protect the squishy Clue-Getter.

  • Jessica Hyde: at first blush Jessica Hyde looks to be antithetical to what Tommy wants. However, the opposite is true. If you pair her with Peter Sylvestre, you can create a near-endless health and horror soak for your fellow investigators, especially if Tommy can toss out some some Solemn Vows. Tommy can still recycle his Leather Coat and Cherished Keepsake to fuel his recursion engine, soaking up a damage and a horror each turn on Jessica Hyde and Peter Sylvestre. Not only that, Jessica gives Tommy a much-needed +1 boost!

  • Peter Sylvestre: similar to Jessica Hyde, Peter Sylvestre upgrades Tommy into a sanity juggernaut. Consider Peter Sylvestre in campaigns that tax sanity. Since Tommy only has 6 sanity himself, Peter Sylvestre will never be a bad choice. He also bumps Tommy up to 4 and 3 (hey it might be important).

  • Safeguard: this card can be integral, if not vital, to an effective Masochist Tommy in 2 player. If Tommy isn't going to split up to investigate on his own and instead stick by the Clue-Getter's side, get this card. It ensures he is always nearby when he needs to soak a hit for the Clue-Getter. Safeguard creates some of the most efficient action compression in the game, since Tommy will never have to take a Move action ever again once this is down. If Tommy is running Safeguard, have the Clue-Getter upgrade into Pathfinder and Shortcut for the ultimate in action compression. This combo will allow your team to dash through scenarios as Tommy uses himself (and his assets) to shield the Clue-Getter from the encounter deck, leaving them free to vacuum up all the clues.

  • Taunt: like the level 0 version, Taunt creates some incredible action efficiency by engaging all those pesky enemies otherwise engaged with your fellow investigators--perfect for an epic follow-up with Dynamite Blast or Mk 1 Grenades. The important selling point is that the leveled Taunt lets Tommy draw a card for each enemy engaged. in a draw-hungry investigator like Tommy, that can be absolutely incredible. It will help him find the vital assets he needs while also refilling his hand. Worst case scenario, it fills his hands with icons he can then use to blow monsters up with his Mk 1 Grenades or Flamethrower.

  • The Black Cat: there are lots of good reasons to consider this card in Tommy. It has 2 Wild icons, making it awesome to pair with Well Prepared. It only costs 2 to play, and with 3 health and 3 sanity soak, this means it can net Tommy 4 resources when it is defeated. And, of course, there is The Black Cat's special ability, which helps guard against drawing the and tokens, downgrading their negative modifier to -1's. In any other investigator, The Black Cat would be discarded when defeated, meaning it's ability is inherently limited...but not with Tommy! He gets to shuffle it back into his deck to come back another day! The Black Cat acts as a major stat buff for Tommy, meaning his likelihood of failure goes way down while it is in play.

BECKY DEAREST

Becky Dearest Tommy wants to find Becky as soon as possible and keep her loaded with ammo.

  • Bandolier: if you want to have Becky out, that will take up both hand slots, leaving Tommy with his hands full. What if he needs to play a Flashlight or Becky's out of bullets and you don't want to send her to the discard pile when you play Enchanted Blade? Consider Bandolier. It bumps Tommy up to 4 when he's holding a weapon (and he can easily be up to 6 with Brother Xavier and a Police Badge in play as well), and gives him two extra hand slots--meaning he can hold Becky for mundane enemies and a Lightning Gun for the biggest baddies. The downside is it takes up a precious body slot, but if defeated it will simply get shuffled back into Tommy's deck.

  • Custom Ammunition: attach this to Becky for 2 additional ammo and, most importantly, a +1 damage boost against Monsters. That's 3 damage against Monsters, folks, even once that Custom Ammunition is used up! Combine with a Well-Maintained and Reliable, and you have yourself a superb weapon. Oh, and did I mention Custom Ammunition is Fast? It's also Supply-traited so you can put it on Stick to the Plan! I would argue that this is a better alternative to Extra Ammunition for a Becky Dearest deck.

  • Extra Ammunition: this is another way to augment the ammo on Becky to make sure she never runs out. It's Supply-traited, so you can put it on Stick to the Plan. It can also be used on other big guns, like the Lightning Gun.

  • Reliable: it's Fast, and when attached to Becky, Tommy gets +3 for his Fight tests with her. Combine it with Well-Maintained and maybe even Custom Ammunition to turn Becky into a super-weapon.

  • Well-Maintained: another Fast upgrade, this card protects your precious Becky from the vagaries of the encounter deck, especially treacheries like Crypt Chill. You can also use it to get more out of Becky by voluntarily discarding her from play, returning her to your hand. You can then play her again for 2 ammo back. Of course, you can also do this with any other big gun Tommy has in play, not just Becky. Think about using this with the M1918 BAR, Flamethrower, etc. Well-Maintained allows you to put down another weapon to replace an empty Becky, then once that new weapon is empty, bump it to the discard pile with a reloaded Becky. If the other weapon is something like a .45 Thompson, you can then grab it back with Scrounge for Supplies!

Standalone Builds

Here's a quick and dirty list of upgrades to get for standalone builds. You may notice that they tend to learn towards Big Money Tommy, since standalone builds are more likely to appeal to that kind of player and gives them a chance to use big bomb cards. All the upgrades in these standalone builds help improve Tommy's ability to recycle assets, deal damage without upgrading weapons, and spend his piles of cash. Maintaining level 0 weapons for as long as possible allows Tommy to target them using Scrounge for Supplies. Instead, Tommy goes for more testless damage using Guard Dog, Beat Cop, and Agency Backup.

9 XP

  1. Beat Cop x2.
  2. Ever Vigilant x2.
  3. Charisma x1.

19 XP

  1. Beat Cop x2.
  2. Ever Vigilant x2.
  3. Charisma x1.
  4. The Red-Gloved Man x2. Recycle your two The Red-Gloved Man for an incredible resource-generating engine.

29 XP

  1. Beat Cop x2.
  2. Ever Vigilant x2.
  3. Charisma x1.
  4. The Red-Gloved Man x2.
  5. Dynamite Blast x2.
  6. Stick to the Plan x1. Put a copy of Ever Vigilant, Prepared for the Worst, and Dynamite Blast on Stick to the Plan. Use Ever Vigilant on your opening setup turn for a huge tempo boost.

39 XP

  1. Beat Cop x2.
  2. Ever Vigilant x2.
  3. Charisma x1.
  4. The Red-Gloved Man x2.
  5. Dynamite Blast x1.
  6. Stick to the Plan x1.
  7. Vicious Blow x2.
  8. Brute Force x2.
  9. Mk 1 Grenades x1.
  10. Keen Eye x1 Put a copy of Ever Vigilant, Prepared for the Worst, and Dynamite Blast on Stick to the Plan. Use Ever Vigilant on your opening setup turn for a huge tempo boost.

49 XP

  1. Beat Cop x2.
  2. Ever Vigilant x2.
  3. Charisma x1.
  4. The Red-Gloved Man x2.
  5. Dynamite Blast x1.
  6. Stick to the Plan x1.
  7. Vicious Blow x2.
  8. Brute Force x2.
  9. Mk 1 Grenades x1.
  10. Keen Eye x1.
  11. Agency Backup x2. Put a copy of Ever Vigilant, Prepared for the Worst, and Dynamite Blast on Stick to the Plan. Use Ever Vigilant on your opening setup turn for a huge tempo boost.

Check out my other Standard Decks:

12 comments

Apr 30, 2020 Faranim · 237

Thanks for posting this detailed write-up. I compared my standard Tommy decklist with yours and found a handful of items worth discussion:

  • I very much prefer 2x Survival Knife, and omit the Enchanted Blade. With 2 Knives, you can double-counter-attack in the Enemy phase which saves your actions for other things.
  • I don't personally include the .45 Thompson and would rather just aggressively mulligan (and search via Tetsuo) for Becky. 6 Resources is hard to afford when you also want to play a 3-cost Ally on the first turn.
  • I prefer Bandolier over Leather Coat. Tommy almost always wants to put his damage on his allies like Tetsuo Mori and Guard Dog. He has a fairly large health pool and can afford to take some hits if necessary. This also opens up the option of still using a Flashlight or Survival Knife while holding a 2-handed gun. The 2XP Bandolier provides +1 and lets you hold 4 hands worth of weapons at once.
  • I personally prefer Live and Learn over Lucky! but maybe this is just personal taste. It feels much more satisfying to draw the and not have it slow you down or ruin your entire turn. Live and Learn also combos favorably with Take Heart, but Lucky! does not.
  • Tommy tends to accumulate lots of resources, so I like to include Physical Training as a safety net. Tommy can often afford to just pay his way thru various tests. Sometimes you never draw it or need to use it, but it has saved me in scenarios with a high focus.
  • Tommy's biggest struggle is card draw. Because his assets constantly re-shuffle back into his deck, his effective deck size is a lot larger than 30 cards. For this reason I include almost every / card drawing tech available - Take Heart, Second Wind, Daring, and in 3-4 player Self-Sacrifice.

In terms of upgrades, without a doubt the first upgrades (for me) are:

After this, I usually grab some extra Allies like Brother Xavier (1) and Beat Cop (2).

Stick to the Plan is amazing for so many reasons - it makes it more likely your opening hand will be full of Assets (and not Events), and it also guarantees you will be able to play Ever Vigilant, Flare, or Emergency Cache, on the first turn of the game to get set up.

Apr 30, 2020 TheBlackHorror · 5985

@Faranim those are all good points. Here's my reasoning:

  • Survival Knife: this issue came up when Survival Knife first came out. We all thought it was so good, but somehow in practice it just didn't live up to our expectations. And that's because it is a Reactive weapon, as opposed to Enchanted Blade, which is a Proactive weapon. In general, your game tempo is much better when you take a Proactive Guardian approach. I've run this deck with 2x and 1x Survival Knife, and because Tommy deck space is so tight, I've found the 1x versions of the deck to be more efficient.
  • .45 Thompson is a late-game weapon. This deck often ends a scenario with 10-20 resources if it doesn't find Becky, so something like the .45 Thompson is easily affordable. It's what you use when the big bad guy is about to come out. Also, unlike Becky, it can be targeted by Scrounge for Supplies--which is really important in an investigator with card draw issues like Tommy.
  • Bandolier is great. The only problem is, you typically aren't recycling your Bandolier, since you need to keep it in play to maintain your weapons, such as Becky and a Survival Knife. In this deck, you need to be able to recycle your Leather Coat to generate resources and also to ensure you get the most out of your Guard Dog (by assigning only 1 damage at a time). That's why I recommend the leveled Bandolier if anything, since it gives you greater latitude in what you can hold--and also grants a +1 boost.
  • As far as Live and Learn, this may just come down to different play styles. Ostensibly they do the same thing. However, Live and Learn may be free to play, but with Lucky! you already know the result of the test, so you have full knowledge of whether this will pass or not. With Live and Learn you are simply rolling the dice again, albeit with a +2 modifier. For example, if you pull an Elder Sign on a test with Tommy, which is +2, and STILL fail, you can play #lucky and possibly pass (assuming you're within range). But with Live and Learn, you have to draw again--and drawing the Elder Sign again is unlikely.
  • Physical Training is great; however, Tommy spends a lot of actions putting cards into play. And the more actions he spends putting cards into play, the more actions he's not using on doing his job--killing monsters. There are a lot of cards that would be nice to include in Tommy, but his deck space is very tight and frankly unless you're going the leveled Physical Training + Well Prepared, it's just another asset he has to spend an action putting into play. Ultimately, the level 0 Physical Training doesn't really give Tommy anything he really needs most of the time. It would be nice, but not necessary to his success.
  • This is good advice, and this is where I started. However, Take Heart, as great as it is, never pulled it's weight. Second Wind assumes you're taking damage on yourself (which doesn't happen enough that it warrants taking up deck space to include it). While all of these are great cards, especially if you are going with the Survival Knife route, deck space is very tight, and ultimately, these cards didn't make the final cut.

As always, thank you for your comments. I value dissenting opinions and always find them constructive.

TLDR: I started with these cards, and ended with this published deck build. Tommy's deck space is tight, and he has a lot of great options--his deck size could easily be 50 great cards. But he's limited to 30, and so I have trimmed his deck down to one of the most efficient builds you will find.

Apr 30, 2020 sergeyvpopov · 1

In my play with Tommy, I've got significant mileage out of Madame Labranche, but I'm not sure which card in your list is serving a similar purpose.

Apr 30, 2020 acotgreave · 34

Another fantastic write up. Thank you! I have LOVED taking Tommy through Dream Eaters. I have definitely played the Masochist style because it seems so counter to the traditional play style. I find that Tommy ends up really rich, too. Tommy has also been the first investigator it's felt worthwhile bringing The Red-Gloved Man into. It's such fun to play him, use him, and then defeat the end of the next mythos.

I have favoured ally soaks with Health and Sanity. That way, I can keep the damage building on one asset only, so if Rookie Mistake triggers, I only lose one card.

Apr 30, 2020 gibby290 · 13

Another homerun! Great deck series!

Apr 30, 2020 TheBlackHorror · 5985

@sergeyvpopovMadame Labranche is an interesting choice! She's a great soak with a cheap resource cost, and a possible solution for Tommy's low card draw. At least in this deck, I have had few opportunities in which Tommy had no cards in hand. And aside from the beginning of a scenario, very few instances where he had 0 resources. In this deck, anyway, I don't think she would trigger very much in this deck.

Tommy's deck space is very tight, so I included the 2 allies he can squeeze the most out of at 0 XP.

However, if you planned on going the Charisma route, you could sub in 2x Madame Labranche and replace a Trench Coat and a Cherished Keepsake. When defeated, Tommy can net the same amount of resources. The only downside is that before you get Charisma, your soak will be more limited due to only having one ally slot!

Also, Madame Labranche might be really good in a Tommy deck with more events and/or skill cards, like @Faranim posted in the comments above. You'd be more likely to empty your hand more often, which means Madame Labranche could draw you more!

Madame Labranche is definitely something to consider, and I think you could make a Tommy deck that makes superb use of her ability!

Apr 30, 2020 TheBlackHorror · 5985

@acotgreaveThank you! I have found that I like to spend Tommy's XP on adding allies (as opposed to replacing them) with those with more soak, especially since a single Charisma can go a long way. Depending on the campaign and who Tommy is partnered with, it's very easy for him to grab health/horror soaks with the sole purpose in mind of protecting the other investigator.

The Red-Gloved Man is hard to justify in most other investigators...but he is SO good in Tommy!

And yes, keeping Rookie Mistake in mind at all times is very important.

Apr 30, 2020 HarrisonF · 7

Spiritual Resolve is really amazing for Tommy. I never use the discard ability, but you get so much soak for the cost -- you net gain resources and don't have to replay it over and over. I have found with that, you can reduce some of the other soaks, such as Leather Coat, True Grit, and Something Worth Fighting For to make room for some of the other cards you cut out.

Apr 30, 2020 TheBlackHorror · 5985

@HarrisonF I haven't seen that card, but YES, it is very good, especially since it doesn't take up a contested slot!

May 02, 2020 LaRoix · 4

Whoa, extensive coverage here. Great read, informative and interesting. Thanks!

May 02, 2020 TheBlackHorror · 5985

@LaRoixThanks! I hope you found it helpful!

May 30, 2020 Eudaimonea · 1

This is a very good write-up. Thank you! However I don’t believe it’s accurate that Self-Sacrifice gives you the two cards even if you fail. It has the “if / then” wording (albeit separated by a period) that’s clearly specified in the rules as dependent on the first clause occurring. I asked the question on BGG and there was a good discussion. The overwhelming consensus was “no cards if succeed.” I’m not aware of an official ruling and I’m reluctant to bug Matt about it because he already nicely replied to me about basically the same question regarding Unearth the Ancients, in which I wanted to know if the card draw was dependent. (The answer was that it too is conditional.)