Card draw simulator
|None. Self-made deck here.|
Auckmid · 4896
This guide is primarily designed as a tool to help you decide what cards to run in your Agnes deck. As such, most of the guide is dedicated to analysing cards that I believe to be worth consideration on Agnes. Since I almost exclusively play Arkham Horror in a multiplayer group on expert, this is the primary setup I am considering when evaluating the cards and creating decks. However, most cards will function with similar results regardless of difficulty, and this deck can be modified for single player.
I am going to make the controversial statement that I believe that Agnes is the single best investigator in the game on higher difficulties, at least for multiplayer. Even though Mark is more consistently powerful at fighting and Rex is more consistently good at sucking up clues, if Agnes gets the right cards in play, she can turn into an absolute juggernaut in combat, especially due to her ability which can give her guaranteed damage under the right circumstances which is extremely good on high difficulty, while also similarly being able pick up clues very quickly if she gets her investigating cards. Additionally, Agnes’s extremely high will makes her far more resilient to many treachery cards then most other investigators. However, the above scenarios also highlight the biggest weakness of Agnes, in that what she can accomplish varies greatly depending on draws. While you will almost always be able to accomplish something significant, what that something is will be inconsistent. As such, it is best not to rely on Agnes for a single specific function when considering team comps, and to instead think of her as a very powerful wild card.
The decklist to the left is ultimately what I believe to be the strongest deck on Agnes at the moment, I do encourage people to make changes to this list as they see fit, as personalizing your deck is part of the fun of Arkham, and there is a section below dedicated to other cards to consider.
Cards in the decklist
- Heirloom of Hyperborea: I think this is an absolutely garbage signature card, and a top contender for weakest signature card in the game. The only saving grace is that it is a fairly good skill commit. I will never play this card, and only ever use it for a skill commit.
- Dark Memory: A really nasty weakness. If you draw this card early in a scenario or while ill prepared to deal with the horror, you usually want to play this card a quickly as possible to avoid taking needless horror and just take the losses associated with this card. However, if you draw this late in a scenario, especially if you have Peter out, you can consider never playing this card and just tanking the horror until you can complete the scenario or resign.
- Shrivelling: Quite possibly the most important card in the deck. While it is out, Agnes becomes as or more effective in combat as a guardian due to her very high will. You'll need to be careful about rationing the card since it only has 4 charges, but it can make Agnes an absolute monster in combat. I always include this card.
- Rite of Seeking: Another key card in the decklist, this makes Agnes very effective at grabbing clues. If you are worried losing actions, you can just rite of seeking as your final action in a round, and if you are fine with risking action loss, you can grab a ton of clues in a single round. I always include this card.
- Peter Sylvestre: While he improves massively after he gets upgraded, this guy is still a key card. Since sanity is an extremely important resource for Agnes, you want to avoid putting needless horror directly on Agnes whenever possible, and Peter is by far the most effective card for accomplishing this. Once upgraded, he also buffs your will which is another massive boon. I always include this card.
- Holy Rosary: Buffs your will and gives you an additional horror tank. Not much else to say. I always include this card.
- Painkillers: Agnes very much wants a way to activate her ability on demand, and she also wants more health. Painkillers meets both of these demands, effectively killing two birds with one stone. I almost always include this card, unless for some reason I feel the need for a stronger resource economy, in which case I run both leather coat and forbidden knowledge over this card.
- Baseball Bat: This card is almost solely in the deck due to it's synergy with fight or flight. The fact that it has the potential to break at any time is annoying, but I do value the +2 fight and consistent +1 damage. Since Agnes will have a fight of 4 with the weapon, it does give her to have an additional tool to deal with weak enemies, even without fight or flight. However, I still only ever run this card in addition to fight or flight, and will usually end up cutting it during a campaign run.
- Lucky!: This card may not be as crucial to the deck as some of the assets. Having said that, lucky is my pick for the single best lvl 0 card in the game, and I believe simply running this card in a decklist makes the deck much stronger. I always run this card and believe it is heresy not to run this card when given the opportunity!!
- Ward of Protection: I think this is a very strong card since it can completely negate some very nasty treachery cards. Successfully blocking an ancient evil can completely swing a scenario. The 1 horror can be mildly unpleasant if you don't have Peter out, but it can also be used to trigger your ability during the mythos phase. I always run this card.
- Uncage the Soul: I really like this card. The two targets for this card are shriveling and rite of seeking. If you are able to play either of those cards with uncage the soul, you get a 3 resource discount, which is the same value you would get with emergency cache, while also saving an action relative to emergency cache since you play 2 cards with 1 action. If you draw uncage the soul before either of your spell assets, you usually don't care that much since, with the exception of Peter, all of your other cards cost 2 resources of less, meaning that you will usually have the resources to play them even without additional resource gain. If you draw this late game or while you have a significant resource build up, where as emergency cache would be a dead card, uncage can still be used a double will commit, which is still very useful. I always run this card.
- Drawn to the Flame: Even though drawing encounter cards can be nasty, especially later in a campaign, "free" clues is extremely valuable, especially on higher difficulties, giving this card a very high value proposition. I almost always run this card in my starter deck, even though you can consider cutting it as you approach the end of a campaign.
- Fight or Flight: Even though this is a relatively dead card at the beginning of a scenario, Agnes is inevitably going to stack horror on herself, and once you have a few points of horror, this card will significantly buff your fight and evasion for a round at a very low cost. Very effective in combination with a weapon that buffs your damage, and a useful evasion tool. However, I do not consider this to be a must-run card, and usually will cut it during a campaign after I drop baseball bat/fire axe.
- Delve Too Deep: This card not only does nothing to help you complete a scenario, it actively makes it more difficult. However, I'm a greedy bastard and Agnes has strong scaling in addition to an extremely high XP cap. Getting those few points extra points of experience can help quite a lot later in a campaign. However, I would never run this in standalone mode, would probably not run this in a mini-campaign, and will always cut it before the end of any campaign. You usually want to play this card towards the end of a scenario when you already pretty much have it locked up, especially if your teammates have resigned so less encounter cards need to be drawn, even though there are some situations where it is worth playing mid-way through a scenario.
- Guts: Can be used to either help ensure a pass on an important will check for Agnes or used to help a teammate pass a will check. Since Agnes has a very high will, when committing this card to one of your skill checks, it is extremely likely to pass, causing this card to cycle. Cycle is always very nice. I always run this card, even though you can consider cutting it late in a campaign, normally if you want to limit cycle in your deck before the end of a campaign (*cough*Dunwich*cough*).
- Fearless: Sanity is a very important resource on Agnes. Cards that heal horror are very good on Agnes. Not much else to say. I always run this card.
- Unexpected Courage: Solid card and useful to have in your back pocket if you ever want help doing a skill check that isn't will. I always run this card, even though it can be cut late in a campaign.
Additional Cards to Consider
While this decklist is my current go-to when starting campaigns, feel free to make alterations depending on the situation (obviously cut Delve Too Deep if you are playing standalone mode) or based on your personal preferences or card pool restrictions.
Here are some additional cards to consider:
- Arcane Initiate: Once you upgrade Peter, he completely outclasses arcane initiate on Agnes. However, even though you aren't running very many of them, getting spells out like shriveling is important, and arcane initiate does help you fish for them, making her worth considering in your starter deck.
- Arcane Studies/Dig Deep: These cards are worth considering if you are creating a deck purely from the core set and are going to be missing quite a few of Agnes’ expensive cards (rite of seeking and Peter). However, these cards don’t have a place once you expand your card pool beyond the core set.
- Blinding Light: I don't like this card, and I think that if you want additional evasion options, manual dexterity is a stronger pick. However, this is still an option.
- Defiance: I prefer unexpected courage to this card, since even on expert, the extra pip on unexpected courage is generally more likely to allow you to pass a skill test then blocking a chaos token. It does shine if there are multiple copies of a nasty chaos token in a scenario, and it does combo if you are also running Baseball Bat, but I find it isn't quite good enough in most scenarios. Still worth considering, especially if you can find room for both this and unexpected courage.
- Emergency Cache: Nice resource burst. However, I prefer uncage the soul to this card, and think that running both is a bit too clunky.
- Fine Clothes: Helpful early on in the Carcosa campaign, but not overly necessary and its hard to find room for it.
- Fire Axe: An alternative to the Baseball bat since it doesn't break. However, Agnes doesn’t have a very strong resource economy while having a fairly heavy curve, meaning that you are going to value your resources highly. As such, recovering from having to dump all your resources for the +1 damage is something that you may have a hard time recovering from. Additionally, your hand weapon is largely meant to be used in combination with Fight or Flight, and you are not going to get any bonus fight after the first attack unless you are sacrificing the bonus damage (unless you are running forbidden knowledge, which synergizes with this card), which can be an issue if you don’t have a lot of horror. The fact that it doesn't break is still really nice and makes it worth considering.
- Flashlight: Can be useful for getting clues in low shroud locations (2 or lower) especially in single player. However, in multiplayer, you can just let the seeker or a teammate with less competitive deck slots take care of low shroud locations, since it is hard finding room for this.
- Forbidden Knowledge: Worth considering as an additional way of triggering your ability, especially since it helps your resource economy. However, I consider painkillers to be better, and it can be difficult finding room for both, but still possible.
- Leather Coat: Agnes does want additional health, but painkillers typically has her covered. You can run this in addition to painkillers if you really want lots of health, or with Forbidden Knowledge instead of painkillers if you really want those extra resources from forbidden knowledge or do not have access to painkillers.
- Manual Dexterity: My main choice if I want additional evasion in my deck, even though I'm typically fine without it.
- Quantum Flux: A nice tech card for the Dunwich campaign, even though I think it is rather unnecessary since this is a fairly low draw deck.
- Resourceful: There are a few survivor cards that you can bounce, and being able to replay Lucky is great. However, it is hard to find a deck slot for it and the lack of a will pip makes it less good on a mystic.
- Ritual Candles: This is a card that seemed strong in theory, but always seemed to fall short in practice. The main problem with it is that if you are doing a skill check in which ritual candle is not actively changing one or more of the chaos tokens from a fail to a pass, it is doing absolutely nothing, which is going to be the case in a significant number of skill checks. A big note I will make however is that I've only ever tested this card in Dunwich, where there was only a total of 3 chaos tokens affected by ritual candles and I have not yet put this card into a Carcosa deck, where there will usually be 5 chaos tokens affected by ritual candles, giving it much stronger potential value and, as such, it may be worth trying in that campaign.
- Storm of Spirits: Good for killing multiple enemies in a room, especially if you are playing with 2 or 3 other people, but I think that it is a little too expensive and a little too situational to be put in the deck.
- "Look what I found!": Strong card when it triggers, but you do not spend enough time investigating to have it consistently trigger. Strong synergy with flashlight.
Cards not found on this list are cards that I generally do not consider, but feel free to alter the deck however suits you.
These are the upgrades I take for Agnes, ordered by how I prioritize them. I put cards that exile and are worth considering in their own separate category, since many of them are extremely useful to have in the last scenario of a campaign when exile doesn’t matter. You can pick them up before the final scenario, but be careful about getting too many too quickly, since they will tax you xp for each scenario you play them in.
Highest PriorityPeter Sylvestre (level 2): The +1 will and +1 sanity you get for just 2xp is insane value, making this always the very first card I upgrade.
- Shrivelling (level 3): Some people make the argument that since Agnes already has a significant amount of will, she doesn’t really need the +2 will. This may be true on lower difficulties, but if you are playing on expert, you are really going to appreciate the +2 will, and 3xp is a very reasonable price for this card, making it a strong early upgrade.
- Rite of Seeking (level 4): Like the entry above, on higher difficulties, you are really going to appreciate that +2 will. However, unlike the level 3 shriveling, this upgrade also significantly boosts for pass effect for the cost of just 1 additional xp and resource, making this a very high value upgrade. However, it has a much lower value in single player since you will not be encountering very many rooms with 3 or more clues, meaning that you may want to hold off on this upgrade if playing alone.
- Song of the Dead: This is actually a card I’m not fond of due to how it will typically only deal a lowly 1 damage. However, there is a lack of viable alternatives when it comes to fighting with Agnes, and are probably going to end up cutting your baseball bat/fire axe as you progress through the campaign, effectively forcing you into taking this card so that you have another combat option in addition to the far superior shriveling.
- Fearless (level 2): Strong upgrade that has the potential of healing Agnes for even more at no resource cost. Good card.
- Shrivelling (level 5): The +1 will and +1 damage are very nice additions for just 2xp relative to the level 3 version. The extra sanity loss when drawing a bad token can be very unpleasant if you don’t have Peter out, which is why I often end up upgrading fearless before upgrading shrivelling all the way to level 5, but this is a card that you are going to want before the end of your campaign.
- Recharge: In a typical setup, this card has around a 25% chance of doing nothing besides wasting an action, a card and potentially discarding an asset that you still wanted in play. However, the other 75% of the time, you get massive value if you are adding 3 charges to an upgraded shriveling, upgraded rite of seeking or grotesque statue. This makes it something that you do want to have in your deck once you’ve upgraded all your spells.
- Grotesque Statue: This is a card I could spend a long time doing a probability analysis on. The short summary of this card is that it is solid, but you should probably prioritize the cards above before getting this. A longer analysis of this card would be that for any skill check, the maximum probability of the reaction on this card changing the result of a skill check from a fail to a pass is around 25%, which occurs when you are doing a skill check which you would otherwise have a 50% chance of passing (50% -> ~75%). As such, since this asset has 4 charges, even if you are maximizing your probability with every single charge, the average number of skill checks that you are going to flip from a fail to a pass through a single grotesque statue is 1. This is not that impressive when you consider this card requires 4xp, 2 resources, an action to play out, and you are never realistically going to maximize your odds with all 4 charges, which causes the average number of skill checks flipped to be, potentially by quite a lot, below 1. Of course, flipping skill checks isn’t all that grotesque statue can do, as it can allow you to dodge a nasty token a scenario might have and it does synergise with song of the dead. However, you should still be careful about prioritizing this card too highly.
- Blinding Light (level 2): This is actually a reasonably strong card, as it gives you burst damage and an escape tool in your back pocket at a low resource cost. However, Agnes has so many strong cards that this card becomes easy to overlook, though I still include it if I’m wracking up the xp.
- Blood Pact: Without moonlight ritual, you are under the vast majority of circumstances never going to use the free actions on this card unless the agenda is going to advance next turn anyway. However, if the agenda is going to advance next turn, this card gives you a power-play turn in which you essentially get +3 will and +3 fight, which is obviously very significant. It also doesn’t take up a deck slot which is also very nice. However, I generally believe that there are better things to spend your xp on for Agnes.
- Moment of Respite: A little too expensive in terms of xp and resources for me. However, healing horror on Agnes is always great, and this card will become more appealing if you start to take mental trauma.
- A Test of Will: Ward of Protection is a very strong card, so a card with the same effect which doesn’t cause horror and can be played for teammates for a very reasonable xp cost is obviously going to be good. This is the main exile card you may want to put into your deck before the end of a campaign, since getting taxed 1xp for using this card isn’t that significant, and blocking the right treachery can be game changing. I often run this card in addition to ward of protection.
- Stroke of Luck: Even though its 2xp cost makes it less appealing to run before a campaign’s end-game, almost guaranteeing a pass on a skill check is incredibly useful, making it something that I’m always trying to put in my deck for the last scenario of a campaign.
- Devil's Luck: Usually just a poor man’s I’ve had worse. It can still be very useful if it blocks a large amount of damage or horror from a treachery (like quantum flux, this can be used as a tech for Dunwich), or just as a dodge that you can only target yourself with. It can be hard to find a slot for this card though, and I prioritize it below the two cards above.
- Flare: In the right deck, this can be a really strong card. Sadly, Agnes doesn’t support this card that well unless you have additional allies. If Peter is your only ally, the miss chance on the ally summon is generally too high, and the fight use isn’t quite good enough on Agnes to justify it over other upgrades.
All other upgrade cards are cards that I do not consider. While upgrading something like ward of protection (lvl. 5) will give you a strictly better version of a card that you are already running, this upgrade list assumes that you are going to obtain an amount of experience that is obtainable in a single 8-scenario campaign (<60). If you do not have more then 60xp, you should always have better options then something like upgraded ward.
Multiplayer Update Quick Overview
Note: I do intend on making a separate update for Solo Agnes (praise Sixth Sense!) but that will likely not be for another few weeks.
After two and a half cycles and coming up to 2 years, I am giving an update to the original guide. The changes made to my current preferred base Agnes deck compared to the original are as follows...
Baseball Bat -> Meat Cleaver
Unexpected Courage -> Live and Learn
Fearless(Or Delve Too Deep) -> Deny Existence
...plus the other important cards added...
The Chthonian Stone - Important tech option, primarily for the Forgotten Age campaign
Mists of R'lyeh - Another important tech option if you need a more consistent evasion option... like in the Forgotten Age campaign
Premonition - Solid card, worth considering
Take Heart - Solid card, worth considering
Sixth Sense - Solid card, worth considering
Thermos/Arcane Research - Fun little combo
Time Warp - High priority upgrade
Rite of Seeking(2) - High priority upgrade - Typically superior to RoS(4) on 2 player
Ward of Protection(2) - Medium priority upgrade
Four of Cups - Medium priority upgrade
Shards of the Void - Replaces Song of the Dead as a combat alternative to Meat Cleaver + Fight or Flight
Fate or Fortune - Nice exile upgrade towards the end of a campaign or on standalone
There have been other solid cards released as well which aren't being specifically mentioned, but I believe these to be the most important ones.
Multiplayer Update Card Analysis
Meat Cleaver - I could spend quite a long time weighing this card against Baseball Bat, which is the hand weapon I initially included in the list, but it ultimately comes down to this. Meat Cleaver is usually going to be the stronger weapon in combination with Fight or Flight since it won't break on you and it can be used to put horror onto Agnes to trigger her ability, then immediately take horror off of Agnes when she kills an enemy. Additionally, when it is out in play, it gives Agnes a very consistent way of dealing a damage to an enemy. For these reasons, I personally prefer Meat Cleaver over Baseball Bat. However, Baseball Bat's biggest advantage is it's consistent +2 fight on use which does make it an effective option when dealing with low fight enemies, while Meat Cleaver will often only give you +1 fight, which is quite significant in those early encounters.
Live and Learn/Time Warp - These two cards are extremely high value for more or less the same reason. Live and Learn can be used after failing a test on your turn to refund the action and any charges used on the failed test, as well as effectively giving you a free unexpected courage on the redo at no cost. Time Warp can be used after any investigator at your location fails a test during their turn to refund the action, any charges used and any cards committed on the failed test, as well as negating any penalties associated with failing the test. I don't think I can understate just how valuable both of these effects are. Super useful cards.
Deny Existence - Another card which is just super high value. Having another way to shut down treachery cards in the encounter deck is just really good.
The Chthonian Stone - Analyzing how good sealing cards are is something that I could go on about for paragraphs, so I'll try to keep it short for this one. The biggest issue with this card is that in most scenario's, especially early on in a campaign, the modifiers on scenario tokens are rarely worse then -4, even on hard/expert. As such, having one of those tokens sealed on a test where you're 4 above the difficulty will cause your chances of passing to decrease since it increases your chance of drawing a -6/-8/auto-fail. This makes the value of this card extremely inconsistent and usually not worth the high cost associated with it. However, this card is still an important tech option since it can still be worth running in scenarios where there are scenario tokens with really devastating effects
Mists of R'lyeh - You can usually get away without too much evasion with this deck, but if you really want to have a strong and consistent evasion option and you're not too worried about filling up your arcane slots, this is the card for you.
Premonition - This is a nice card because it can be used prior to an important skill test to let you and your teammates know whether you need to commit to that skill check, and how much to commit if you do need to. While this is definitely a useful effect, it suffers from the issue that Agnes usually isn't running a lot of skill cards to commit to a test if needed, giving her a bit of anti-synergy with this card. Additionally finding the deck slots to include this card can be tricky.
Take Heart - Strong econ card which is worth considering. However, since Agnes has very high will, you're less likely to be failing at skill checks from treachery cards, meaning that if you want to trigger the effect for yourself, you will likely end up needing to to an action to intentionally fail a fight/investigate, making it less useful on her then on investigators who can trigger the effect consistently without spending the actions. This is also another card where it can be hard to just find the deck slots for it.
Sixth Sense - Another card which I could spend a long time going on about and I'll try to avoid. If you want to build Agnes to primarily be just a clue gatherer, take this card in addition to Rite of Seeking. If you are in a team comp which isn't very good at getting clues and you are likely going to need to be spamming the investigate action, take this over Rite of Seeking. If you are playing on solo, absolutely take this card. However, if you are looking to be doing a mix of fighting and investigating, I prefer Rite of Seeking over this card. Since Rite of Seeking is going to be picking up twice as many clues on average, Rite of Seeking has a higher value proposition unless you are looking to spam the investigate action with Sixth Sense (7+ times after playing). Since, this usually isn't the case for me, I typically just take Rite of Seeking over this card, even though this at least partially comes down to personal preference.
Arcane Research/Thermos - Fun combo since it gives you bonus XP long term. However, Thermos can bog the deck down a bit as another high cost card, and starting with 2 mental trauma can be very painful if you aren't able to draw into Peter/Thermos.
Rite of Seeking(2) - Nice stepping stone between Rite of Seeking(0) and Rite of Seeking(4). Additionally, on 2 player, you may want to consider not upgrading past this card since a lot of locations will only have 2 clues, making this card more efficient for those locations then Rite of Seeking(4).
Ward of Protection(2) - As mentioned with Ward of Protection(0), blocking nasty treacheries like Ancient Evils can potentially flip the scenario from a loss to a win, and the upgrade here helps to ensure that it can find it's mark. Additionally, this can be used to potentially save a teammate with lower will from a treachery which would otherwise cause huge problems for them.
Four of Cups - Agnes tests her will a lot. As such, assets with give +will are pretty much going to be good on her by default. However, I typically only one copy of this card because 1) It isn't as strong a card like Holy Rosary or Peter Sylvestre(2) and 2) Since it cannot be committed to skill checks, if you draw a second copy of this card, it will be a dead draw.
Shards of the Void - Even though this card is a bit weaker then equally costed Shriveling(3) for Agnes, it's still a strong combat option due to it's consistent +1 damage which I believe to be Agnes' best option if you want to run another combat spell in addition to Shriveling. Sealing the 0 usually isn't too big of an issue, though keep in mind that immediately releasing the 0 with your first attack is a valid option.
Fate or Fortune - Just like with Ward of Protection blocking an Ancient Evils, Fate or Fortune can potentially save a scenario by buying you that one extra turn. Do to it's high cost, you will likely only want to buy this at the end of a campaign instead of purchasing it multiple times, but it's still a very nice card.
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