Kymani goes Microscopic (29 XP) | HC 1K Series

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HungryColquhoun · 2795

Kymani goes Microscopic

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I'm continuing my series with a deck each Sunday and using the new Hemlock Vale cards. This deck uses Kymani's usual evade shenanigans to rapidly power up Microscope ••••, giving clue compression alongside their awesome enemy management...


Overview

  • Compared to the level 0 counterpart, you don't exhaust the upgraded Microscope to add evidence. This means with Kymani's usual double evade shenanigans you're adding two evidence a time. With 3 or more evidence you get a +6 boost, which comfortably cracks mid-shroud locations even with Kymani's crummy base Intellect. This also gives 4 clues for and so provides persistent compression as you'll be evading a lot. Honestly, any form of compression is no mean feat for Rogues!

  • Stealth ••• does what it usually does for Kymani, giving you a evade at a lower difficulty to use as your discarding evade attempt. Adding to this often triggers Pickpocketing •• and Lucky Cigarette Case, and is overall very powerful. Lightfooted is a new Hemlock Vale card which lets you handle groups more easily, including Aloof enemies or enemies not engaged with you.

  • In addition to Microscope, the deck boasts other tech for clue-finding. Thieves' Kit is a work horse card which refunds its cost over time and gives you a little extra, and Lola Santiago allows you to pick-off cheap clues as . Streetwise provides usual pay-to-win, meaning no or test should be out of your reach. With an extra action from Leo De Luca on top of this, your clue-finding tempo is high!

  • I've forgone tutoring in this deck for raw card draw. Lucky Cigarette Case with two copies of Pickpocketing are likely to produce 3 cards and two resources any turn where you're evading (with a 75% chance of getting at least one of these in your opening draw + mulligan), and Easy Mark plus Manual Dexterity •• are excellent cantrips. This deck has a few high resource burst cards (Faustian Bargain, Bank Job) to ensure you can set up quickly - giving you the money to pay for the cards you draw.

  • British Bull Dog is here for when Elite and/or Massive enemies need to die. 99% of the time you're going to have a Microscope and Thieves' Kit or Grappling Hook in your hands, but I know there's been instances previously where several Elite enemies have showed up and Kymani has been useless. To have that contingency covered off in a single asset is excellent card compression, given you get more use out of it than Backstab for the same resource cost. If you don't need it, commit it to an test.


Campaign starter and planned progression

With In the Thick of It and Kymani's bonus this a 29 XP deck. In terms of side deck, you can take Matchbox if you want - I like it but I like Lightfooted and Liquid Courage more and they are all I would consider replacing (and Streetwise already provides boosts in any case). 0 XP deck is as follows (and link here):

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A recommended order of purchases/upgrades is:


Final thoughts

Honestly if we're talking about clue compression on Rogues, Microscope •••• on Kymani is pretty hard to beat. The huge selling point here is it needs no support cards to work and plays for a modest 2 resources. Yes you will get more clues playing Pilfer ••• over and over again, but having the resources to fund that requires a deck crammed full of support (and you're only a away from not being able to recur it). Meanwhile, Microscope powers up as you evade, and while you're waiting for it to gain evidence (which is does at a fast pace) then Thieves' Kit will pick up the slack. On top of all this, Kymani as we all know demolishes non-Elite non-Massive enemies - giving you not only good clue compression but also S-tier enemy management as far as the majority of enemies are concerned.

To go off on a tangent, I find Microscope •••• to be a weird card and almost one which was built for Kymani. Seekers who might want to use a Microscope (Joe possibly) can likely get away with the level 0 version as a +6 boost is excessive. Meanwhile, it also doesn't suit Wilson Richards particularly well, as killing to power it up is slow going and the trigger sits much more uncomfortably on a Guardian as opposed to a Rogue who can take Leo for an extra action. Kymani is the only investigator who has reason to evade the same enemy twice in the same turn, and so they power it up far faster than anyone else.

But anyway, I digress! I did Google whether the idea had been covered previously after I'd done the majority of the write-up here, and while it's not really been posted on ArkhamDB yet (there's one published Microscope level 0 deck with no write-up), u/indexspartan over on Reddit had posted about it (kudos! Link here). Even so, I liked the deck well enough to still want to release it and I don't think the combo is very well known other than people who spotted the thread. I think we're nearing the saturation point where a lot of the juicy new ideas have now been covered (though I do have one or two more up my sleeve which I don't think have been mentioned)! How do you like Microscope in general? Let me know!

14 comments

Mar 31, 2024 Brotkurier · 1

Thank you so much for posting this deck. Must be really fun in the dream eaters campaign to go wild on swarm enemies. Definitely will give this a try. Thumbs up!

Mar 31, 2024 HungryColquhoun · 2795

@Brotkurier Thanks, I appreciate it! Yeah I think vs. swarm enemies it would go to town - I tried it vs. Feast of Hemlock Vale so I've not had a chance to use it against swarm enemies yet. Let me know what you think when you've tried it out!

Mar 31, 2024 acotgreave · 783

This looks like great fun. Thanks for posting this (and the others!)

Mar 31, 2024 HungryColquhoun · 2795

@acotgreave Thanks, glad you like it and the wider series! I think a big advantage is Microscope •••• is in the campaign starter, it's good to not have to wait around for the pivotal upgrade to a deck!

Apr 01, 2024 tcrudisi · 3

Oh man - I just played a Microscope (4) Kymani 29xp deck in an epic Machinations of Time arkhan nights 2023 event yesterday. I wasn't sure how well it would work. I made some sacrifices that I wasn't happy about in order to play it ... but it worked incredibly well. I was the main fighter and picked up 12 clues. I drew the auto-fail once or it would have been 16. It could have been so many more (I had about 14 evidence on the Microscope when it ended), but my agility was needed to actually spend the clues rather than picking them up.

Those clue numbers may sound small, but realize that I was the main fighter in a 3p group. If your main fighter in a 3p group is picking up 12+ clues, you're going to have an easy time (at least if they are keeping the board clear, and nobody keeps the board clear as easily as Kymani).

Stealth 3 is just flat-out busted in Kymani. Microsope 4 isn't "busted", but it does make them even better at getting clues.

Apr 01, 2024 HungryColquhoun · 2795

@tcrudisi Yeah I know what you mean, the pairing of Microscope •••• and Stealth ••• is definitely powerful on Kymani - it flexes hard! For me I was actually using this as my primary clue-finder in a 2p group, as usually the max clues on a location is 2 and so Microscope can get them all in one. I guess the main drawback is Microscope takes some time to power-up, but Thieves' Kit solves that if it's in your opening hand and if not you'll likely have Lola Santiago/Intel Report (and Streetwise at a minimum if you need to just pay for +3 ).

Combat-wise as you say, this is also very good. There was a moment in Hemlock Vale where due to choices we made I found myself needing to kill of 6 or 7 Elite enemies alongside my main damage dealer in around 5 turns, who also each had 6 or 7 health. The 2 x Pickpocketing •• and Lucky Cigarette Case combo meant with one evade I could draw 3 cards, and so this allowed me to readily find British Bull Dog in the crunch time quickly. We just had enough actions to kill them all, so having a mechanism to get to your damage-dealing card when you can't just evade-to-discard is clutch.

I suspect a lot of people will want to be playing Kymani with Microscope ••••, so this guide should make it easy to get to the table and take the thought process out of upgrading. The only thing you could consider while upgrading is whether to take Stealth ••• before Pickpocketing ••, but the resources upgraded Pickpocketing gives and that it plays fast makes it easy to get out and the cash can then work with Streetwise or Intel Report at that point (and it's hugely helpful not having to find an action to play it in opportunity-cost wise). Honestly I also found base Stealth before upgrading to be useful (I was a bit dubious at first), as it essentially becomes a persistent one-per-turn Unexpected Courage on the action you need to over-succeed on. I guess what I think I'm trying to say is, I loved this deck!

Apr 01, 2024 tcrudisi · 3

@HungryColquhounI've been a huge Kymani fan since they released. I've played them through a few campaigns and in a few one-shots. I've never played Kymani as the primary cluever. I played them as flex once (had a bad time) and the main fighter the other times (they absolutely dominate). As the main fighter, I've had the main cluever complain to me that I'm getting more clues than they are. (It's my wife, we love to complain.) It sounds weird to say, but by focusing on fighting, I can get more clues.

Microscope exacerbates that since it wants you to evade. I was frequently getting 3 evades in for one action. It would have been almost trivial for me to do something like "evade/evade/engage/evade" (all that being one action) and then use Microscope 4 to get 4 clues from my current location. Or using Nimble on the last evade to move to a new location for the Microscope investigate.

I do think Microscope is just a bit of a "win-more" for Kymani who, frankly, didn't need it. They were already boss with just Thieves' Kit. Though I'm a bit wary of how it will perform in 2p as the primary cluever. If your partner draws the enemy (50% of the time), you won't get any evades to charge up the Microscope unless you engage first. And now you're using 2 actions to get 2 evades, which is inefficient for the Microscope. This makes me think the Riot Whistle may be a better amulet. Or at least warrant Relic Hunter so you can run both LCC and Riot Whistle.

Apr 01, 2024 HungryColquhoun · 2795

@tcrudisi Yes I think it's definitely nice that Microscope rewards you more for what you want to be doing, and it is a win-more card for an already great investigator! On the not getting any evidence build-up if you don't draw enemies, it's worth noting Microscope 4 can trigger when other investigators evade or defeat enemies at your location. While this isn't quite as good as the build-up of two evidence you would get from dealing with the enemy yourself, it's still useful and takes the edge off everything sitting on your shoulders (and partly lessens the need for Riot Whistle, though it's still useful).

As a primary cluever it didn't let me down in 2p, but the other deck was also flex (but spec'd much more into combat than flex - e.g. they would get 1 clue per action - but I guess equally then that means they manage enemies alongside you giving you time to use the Microscope). Lola Santiago and Thieves' Kit naturally pick up a lot of the slack, if it was just Microscope then I wouldn't recommend it but with the addition of the other two cards it was decent enough. One the point of Nimble, it's definitely a nice pick - I liked Lightfooted just a bit more as a more defensively orientated card which lets you deal with multiple enemies more readily.

Apr 02, 2024 Valentin1331 · 56145

Cool deck! Happy to see an alternate deck for Kymani!

It's one of my favourite investigators, but somehow, it feels like they polarise the community. Some say they're one of the best/their favourites, and others don't seem to like them that much.

Anyways, they seem like a natural fit for the Microscope (4) and I think that it's a great way to increase the value of Evade, which is always good!

Apr 02, 2024 HungryColquhoun · 2795

@Valentin1331 Thanks as always for the praise! (As a warning to anyone reading this, I'll get into some very vague and minor Hemlock Vale spoilers below in the final paragraph).

For me Kymani is a powerful S-tier investigator, but not too powerful (e.g. on the same level as taboo Rex, Mark and Darrell). I think the main reason for them not being too powerful is their ability is limited to non-Elite non-Massive enemies, so when a high health massive/elite enemy shows up you are in a bind. Alongside Microscope ••••, British Bull Dog has definitely helped Kymani for this reason.

Re. Hemlock Vale, there's one (skippable) scenario in particular that takes a tower defense format - with both Elite and non-Elite enemies showing up regularly. Without British Bull Dog I think myself and the Guardian this was paired to would have been overwhelmed, however with it the enemy management worked like a dream - with me discarding the non-Elites, killing the occasional Elite with Bull Dog, and the Guardian dealing big damage to the majority of the other healthier Elites. We nailed the best resolution as a result, so with all the clue finding this does pairing it to another flex build works very well!

Apr 05, 2024 jgoldshlag · 1

No Kicking the Hornet's Nest in here? Seems like it would be nice to start up the machine

Apr 07, 2024 HungryColquhoun · 2795

@jgoldshlag I thought about it but TBH there isn't a load of space for it (and the deck does well enough for clue-finding without it with Thieves' Kit while Microscope powers up). You could replace Bank Job with it if you're especially keen, for me personally I like it when I know exactly how the cards in my deck are going to perform (which is why I have resource generators like Bank Job picked over it). In any case, Arkham throws enough enemies at you in my experience!

Apr 10, 2024 KarnEdge · 1

Any suggestion on where to put the [[In the Thick of it]] trauma? 2 in Health or split even?

Apr 11, 2024 HungryColquhoun · 2795

@KarnEdge I typically go for double in their biggest soak stat, so yes health in this case (especially as their is strong enough that you'll pass a lot of damage-dealing treacheries).