Shotgun Leo

Card draw simulator
Odds: 0% – 0% – 0% more
Derived from
None. Self-made deck here.
Inspiration for
Leo @ The Gamelab 0 0 0 1.0

damirius 207

The end goal is to have a shotgun as Leo's primary and only weapon. First off, this is multiplayer only deck, it wouldn't work for solo and even with 2 players it's a little iffy. So 3+ is optimal. So the biggest drawback is that Leo will slowly turn into shotgun wielding beast, but he will not be able to pull too many clues by himself. Other drawback is the transition into shotgun only deck, luckily we can bring Adaptable.

Upgrade path

  1. 3xp - Charisma
  2. 2 x 2xp - 2 x Beat Cop -> 2 x Beat Cop (level 2)
  3. 4xp - .32 Colt -> Shotgun
  4. 1xp - Adaptable -> Switch Flashlight for Prepared for the Worst and 2nd .32 Colt for Daring Maneuver
  5. 6xp - Stick to the Plan Stick Prepared for the Worst, Emergency Cache
  6. With Adaptable switch 2nd Flashlight for Daring Maneuver and .45 Automatic for Inspiring Presence
  7. 2 x 3xp - 2 x Emergency Cache -> 2 x Emergency Cache (level 3)
  8. With Adaptable switch 2nd .45 Automatic for Inspiring Presence
  9. 2 x 1xp - Calling in Favors and Narrow Escape for Extra Ammunition - You can stick one ammo under Stick to the Plan from now on
  10. 4xp - Narrow Escape -> Shotgun
  11. 2 x 2xp - 2x Overpower -> 2 x "Eat lead!"

There are other options, like playing around Double or Nothing for huge hits, but be sure to have some help or to play both that and "Eat lead!" to ensure that you don't fail.

Main idea is to get to that point where you can play only with the Shotgun for whole scenarios without the need for saving ammo. To achieve that we have Sleight of Hand which can help at the start, also it can be useful in first few scenarios with .32 Colt, .45 Automatic and Flashlight. After that we rely on Venturer and Calling in Favors. In later scenarios we will also have Emergency Cache which can put up to 4 supplies on Venturer which can be turned into ammo on the Shotgun. Of course there is also Extra Ammunition which can be put under Stick to the Plan same as Emergency Cache and Prepared for the Worst which we can use to ensure that we find our shotgun quickly.

Other things to note is that Narrow Escape gives us ability to boost up our skills while evading AoO, which is extremely useful for Shotgun. Daring Maneuver is also nice since it essentially gives us 2 damage if we use it with Shotgun! "Watch this!" is helpful for our economy and we can use it with, you guessed, Shotgun attacks. Inspiring Presence is debatable addition, but it can help with healing and readying our Beat Cop and Venturer while boosting our skill tests.

You may have noticed yet another drawback, and that's experience. If you aren't playing with someone who will bring Delve Too Deep, I would advise that you slot in Charon's Obol after the first scenario. It's risky, but it pays off quickly.

23 comments

May 14, 2018 Low_Chance 3

I love this idea. The synergy of green/blue for maximizing returns on Shotgun is excellent, especially using Venturer + Emergency Cache(3) rather than going straight to extra ammo. Also the ability to use narrow escape/sleight of hand to produce the shotgun without getting Attacks of Opportunity means the pressure to play it out ASAP (and use all that money) is greatly reduced.

I think Double or Nothing is definitely worth looking into. In 3+ players, enemies will have enough health that a doubled shotgun + vicious blow will not go to waste at all. Paired with, say, a Father Mateo who can play in a Seal of the Elder sign, you're looking at a very efficient single action. Double or Nothing is also useful for those turns where you run into a 5 or 6 hp enemy before you can find a shotgun, at which time you produce a .45 using Sleight of hand, throw in a Double or Nothing and a Vicious Blow, and call it a day. I've been playing as a Guardian in a party with a Wendy packing Double or Nothings and it's been extremely useful as a damage multiplier if used at the right times.

May 14, 2018 damirius 207

@Low_Chance Yea, Double or Nothing is definitely a good option, especially if you have some support like you mentioned. Mateo is really great, because it gives you that freedom to go forward and shoot everything without fear of drawing autofail. Also he will probably bring along The Chthonian Stone, which is maybe not that big boost, but it helps for sure. Also worth noting here is that is +2 for Leo Anderson! Other options are of course Minh Thi Phan and Daisy Walker with Encyclopedia! Of course all this becomes a huge risk if you are playing on higher difficulties I think, so Lightning Gun becomes better weapon there, still I think Shotgun is rather fun because I'm sure it will give you some memorable situations if nothing else :).

May 14, 2018 Low_Chance 3

On the lightning gun vs. shotgun question for higher difficulties, I think the lightning gun is definitely superior for clearing out rank-and-file enemies, but against boss enemies the shotgun has a lot to offer. With the 2 additional damage per hit (on a good pull), the shotgun can result in way fewer total pulls from the bag, which means fewer of the punishing "on reveal" chaos effects. When you put Double or Nothing or the auto-elder sign in the picture, the Shotgun starts to look really good for the ultra-high-hp enemies.

For clearing the rank-and-file 3 hp byakhee swarms (usually the more important, if less glamorous job), lightning gun is way better, of course, but I would not rule out the Shotgun even on Expert, for the right situation.

May 14, 2018 CecilAlucardX 2

I can't really suggest taking Charon's Obol on what is essentially the class to take damage and fight enemies. If you have the Obol and are at low health/sanity, then you become MUST less happy about enemies showing up, even to the point of failing the scenario for not beating that boss, or engaging the group of enemies so your investigator can finish the ritual or what have you. You cannot even take Cheat Death to get around that. (Which is always a silly take. "You took the obol to get more experience, then spent 10 of it to get 2 copies of a card to prevent it's penalty?")

May 15, 2018 Django 1216

Too bad they didn't give leo access to allies lv 0-5 (maybe non unique).

How about Lone Wolf? Is the cost of your cards reasonable or can't you use it too often, as you're at a location with an ally?

May 15, 2018 damirius 207

@CecilAlucardX I agree, Charon's Obol is a risky pick, but I don't think Leo Anderson will die easily from enemies, especially with plethora of allies at his disposal (which you can play without provoking AoO). For my group at least, most of the deaths come from not handling enemies in time, which I think Leo can handle very well, but I must say that everyone would play a lot safer. Not going for the boss kill or resigning early, so I get your point. Still if anyone thinks it could work, feel free and take it, but accept the risk!

@Django I think the problem is that you will need a bunch of resources upfront, in the first couple of turns and Lone Wolf will slowly start to make you money after 3rd/4th turn. So I guess the goal would be playing "Watch this!" and Emergency Cache early. But I guess since we have Sleight of Hand you could postpone playing Shotgun for some time and play around with that if possible and wait for more money. Don't know what could we remove to make space for it, any suggestions? Also don't know how often you will be starting alone on location and if that would cause some problems with the player order, since I noticed that often guardians go first, often so that the other players know if they need to help him with killing stuff or because he needs to save some poor seeker for nasty monsters.

May 15, 2018 TheBlackHorror 716

Great deck! I had made something similar, but it shied away from weapons in favor of Machete and Survival Knife. I'll have to give this a try!

May 15, 2018 Django 1216

Mr. Anderson has a lot of deck building options. I'm eager to see completely different versions. Most guardian and rogue allies are pretty expensive, but his ability compensates this partly. So the Survival Knife mgiht actually work on him, if you put the damage from enemies on allies. Too bad he can't play Decorated Skull, this would totally fit the theme of sacrifcing allies on purpose and that anderson actually doing this subconcious to save his own hide...

Have you thought about Dario El-Amin as another source of ressouces? You might remove Narrow Escape or "Watch this!".

May 15, 2018 Daerthalus 4

"Too bad he can't play Decorated Skull, this would totally fit the theme of sacrifcing allies on purpose and that anderson actually doing this subconcious to save his own hide..."

Why can't he play Decorated Skull? It's a level 0 Rogue card.

May 15, 2018 Django 1216

For some reason i thought it was a 3 XP card. So ignore my comment on it and built a deck with the skull and allies.

May 15, 2018 damirius 207

@TheBlackHorror Thanks! I was steering away on purpose from melee weapons, not because any gameplay reason, just for fun. Wanted to have gunslinger in the party :). I think that both Machete and Survival Knife are great honestly.

@Django I was actually thinking about putting Dario El-Amin instead of Leo De Luca first, but opted for Leo De Luca in the end. I will be testing it out with current iteration and we will see if it works out.

As for the other deck building options, yea I believe Anderson has a lot of ways he can go. Some of the usual guardian decks we ran in our party are all ally heavy with not-so-interesting upgrade path, charisma/keen eye/beat cops/xaviers/ever vigilant/stand together with usual starting .45 and Machette, and even with that kind of deck Anderson would pull more value out of it than most. All that said, like I mentioned on the start Survival Knife with Guard Dog can pull some serious punches. His ability to play an ally for less resources without an action even when he is engaged with the enemy is priceless I think. Plus that knife gives you essentially an action out of your turn and we all love actions don't we :)!

May 15, 2018 Django 1216

I don't want to crush your dreams, but andersons ablity provokes opportunity attacks, as it's a "play" action. Even if it's "free", that does not negate OAs, unless the ability says so. It's the same for Daisy Walkers tome action and Ursula Downs investigate after moving.

May 15, 2018 damirius 207

I don't believe it counts as an action. It enables you to play something as part of the trigger. Ursula states that you can take an investigate action, which means she can take a basic action or even play some event with Investigate designator. Daisy's ability clearly marks tomes with action abilities. It's more similar to Uncage the Soul where you pay the action to play the card itself, but you don't pay an additional action to play chosen spell/ritual card.

May 15, 2018 CecilAlucardX 2

He's right, Django. Per AoO, from Rules: "Each time an investigator is engaged with one or more ready enemies and takes an !action! other than to fight..." Anderson's reaction is just to play a card. It's very similar to William Yorick's reaction to play an asset from his discard pile, which also doesn't provoke an AoO.

May 15, 2018 Daerthalus 4

"I don't believe it counts as an action. It enables you to play something as part of the trigger. "

Does Yorick's ability "Play an asset from your discard pile (paying its cost)" trigger OAs if you are engaged with an enemy when it triggers?

I believe it was ruled that it does not trigger OAs. I'd say that since both are "reactions" and more/less worded the same way, that Leo's ability also does not triggers an OA.

Or look at Joey the Rat's ability:

  • Spend 1 resource: Choose an Item asset from your hand and play it (paying its cost).

It's not a "reaction", but it says to play an asset from your hand, and I think we all agree that it does not trigger OAs.

May 16, 2018 matt88 14

I like the idea of this deck, but i would feel uneasy playing a Guardian without Machete.

May 16, 2018 matt88 14

I also feel that this deck can encounter some problems. First one is money. You want to get a Shotgun out as fast as possible, so if you don't have Sleight of Hand, there goes 5 resources, which you usually need at the start of the game to play your allies. So my guess is the first Emergency Cache will almost always go away for money. That means less bullets. A second problem is the concern of his signature weakness. The need to play things like Shotgun and extra Ammuntion early on, will delay you from playing your allies, which means that, for some time, you will stick with your allies in your hand and having only one or two allies on the board, and it will probably be important that they stick. And that means that his weakness can do significantly more harm to you, as you will have a lot of allies in your hand and few but important allies on the board.

May 16, 2018 damirius 207

I don't think this is a big issue, already talked with others regarding resource problems. First 2/3 turns will be tricky that's correct, afterwards it's not much of a problem and I know that taking too much to setup will hurt. This is mostly about Luca and his high cost, without him it should be a big problem, but of course we loose his amazing ability. Also, like I mentioned, I'm not saying this is the most optimized way to play Leo, I wanted to make some fun Shotgun build and play around with it, and that's also the reason why there isn't any Machete in the deck. Machete was the staple card in most guardian decks for my party and we just wanted to play more with other guardian weapons.

May 16, 2018 Low_Chance 3

@matt88: I think the money won't be too big a problem. As damirius said, the only conflict I really see is Leo De Luca. The shotgun can be played out not only using Sleight of Hand, but also Narrow Escape to avoid attacks of opportunity, allowing some great flexibility on the spend. With a Stick to the Plan to make sure you always start with Emergency Cache, you'll be able to make it okay.

May 16, 2018 matt88 14

@Low_Chance Narrow Escape still needs you to pay the price, so you have to keep the 5 resources to the side. Unless you play your Emergency Cache for money, it's gonna take a long to setup (unless that is your point on Emergency Cache, still, it means less bullets though).

May 16, 2018 TheBlackHorror 716

I was thinking about this deck....at the upper end of XP it could be one of the most powerful Guardian builds! Only downside is maybe not finding a gun in time. Also, this deck would be a good candidate to finally use the Springfield (gasp) in multiplayer! Sleight of Hand would allow for 3 good shots at enemies engaged with your fellow investigators while not hogging the two hand slots for more than a round. For any of you out there who want to use the Springfield because...well, just because...this would be the deck to do it in.

May 17, 2018 Daerthalus 4

With only 2 Shotguns and 1 Prepared for the Worst (under Stick to the Plan), seems like you could often end up stuck without a weapon for multiple turns.

How often do you find yourself using your actions to draw cards?

Jun 15, 2018 damirius 207

OK, so I've seen how this runs in practice (PtC standard) and it's really fun. My friend piloted this deck and I've been using my Finn deck going as heavy cluever. He used similar upgrade path except that he focused on getting second copy of the shotgun sooner (even before Stick to the Plan). Other bigger change is that he took "I've had worse…" instead of second copy of Emergency Cache which also works great, since you don't actually need 20 ammo on your shotgun.

Light Spoilers for PtC

The Unspeakable Oath was rather rough as you can imagine. But afterwards everything started to fall into place. He managed to kill Specter of Death in 2 hits together with Corpse Dweller for his 3rd hit, which is in itself quite amazing. Of course there were more interesting kills. Finding shotgun was never a problem, funding all that stuff was for a little bit, but with Stick to the Plan that becomes a lot easier.

It was one of the best campaign runs for us, except one misstep I took which proved to be fatal. In Black Stars Rise we were going through locations like crazy, in 5 turns I was already at the Chapel of St. Aubert and we knew what we had to do. I made the call with the Finn to take 3 horror and just power through the scenario, but one encounter later Marked by the Sign happens and I'm dead on the ground with lots of clues dropped on the location. Even with that Leo fought till the end, gathered somewhere about 5 clues from that location, killed plethora of beasts including Beast of Aldebaran, but died just before the end from sanity damage.