Run For Your Life

A lot of people were quick to judge these desperate cards the instant they were teased. For good reason! Running down to 3 sanity is begging for something to go wrong and these cards sit, tauntingly, doing nothing at all until you’re that low. The +4 to a skill test is tempting, but feels like overkill in pretty much every difficulty. And unlike the core skill cards it doesn’t pull to replace itself! +4 when you’re near death seems silly when you can use an early +2 to never end up in that situation.

So why do I still like these cards? (Well, sometimes)

In a game like Netrunner, or L5R, or even Arkham Horror board game winning is a binary state. For these games the rule is simple: when winning decrease variance, and when losing take risks. AHLCG though is none of these games, sometimes having a plan to lose partially is better than getting destroyed. This is why "I'm outta here!" is a situationally fantastic card: you can be within a hair’s breath of death and so long as you can play it you can take the chips (and victory points) you’ve won and cash out without suffering the trauma or negative consequences waiting for you if you lose.

Of course not everyone has the dashing good looks and wits about them to be like our lovable rogues. For everyone else there’s Run For Your Life, it doesn’t guarantee survival but if you have presence of mind to see it coming this card can get you away from that one last enemy who’s stopping you. Since it’s a tech card that you should only need to see late 1 copy is sufficient.

Special note: the desperate suite is almost universally good in Roland Banks because chances are very high that he’ll be at 3 sanity at some point in the scenario anyway. This is more a condemnation of Roland than it is an endorsement of these cards however.

Difrakt 93
Spirit Athame

I have been guilty, gravely so, of underestimating this card. On its surface it doesn’t appear to do much, it’s in the growing list of +2 items which serve a secondary purpose, but in general without a +1 damage their function as weapons tend to be underwhelming. Even worse this card exhausts while fighting making it of even further limited use as a weapon

The +2 bonus is seemingly hamstrung by the same issues. The boost is only helping you with something you’re already good at, and still only once a turn. However in reality it’s a free, limited-scope guts every turn. Spread out over a whole scenario you’re looking at +10 or more, for 3r and an action. That’s some insane value and is almost guaranteed to save you a few tests if pulled early.

Note that it does compete with its hands-slot requirement. This isn’t so bad in Agnes, Akachi, Mystic Daisy or Sefina, but between his Trumpet and Grotesque Statue Jim may not be jumping to include a 4th and 5th hand item until mystic hand slot tech is printed. That being said the trumpet doesn’t show up in every game and it has good commit icons so there’s still justification if you only use the trumpet on occasion.

8/10

A solid, unassuming card that never steals the show but always has your back.

Difrakt 93
This and campaign allies like Lita might be used as backup.. — XehutL 2
Song of the Dead

Trap card!

Even with Jim Culver, who has an extra symbol, because he can turn the , into a , the chance of hitting a symbol is about 30% (more or less, depending a little bit on how your token bag looks like after setup/events). This 30% includes the use of the Grotesque Statue.

Thats a very low chance of hitting with +2 damage . So in my opinion its worse than Shrivelling in allmost every respect. Even for Jim Culver its better to use the Grotesque Statue on the Shrivelling effect to dodge the possible horror dmg (or a guaranteed hit) then to turn this one into a +3 dmg live-the-dream-monsterkiller-machine.

The only use for it like Sheckel wrote is as a weapon with a solo Daisy Walker or for a solo Agnes Baker that for some reason wants to deal with extremely weak enemies.

Actually I enjoy this card while playing as Jim. You can use SotD as opener or finisher, especially for odd health monsters. IMO it is most usefull when paired with Shrivelling in other slot. BTW, in my last session with Jim I scored the 'critical' hit in every fight - it was really memorable chain of luck! :) — XehutL 2
I agree, it's clever to use it as an opener versus 3 hp monsters. And I would even agree that Mystics dont have a lot of pure damage dealing cards at the moment. Still this card is the equivalent of a knife, on a battery with 5 charges for 2xp. Mystics already have already very xp expensive cards (especially Jim who has to spend 8xp to get both the Grotesque statue's in his deck, that his card just seems too expensive. If this card came at a 0xp cost, my opinion could be swayed, but as it stands its just not good. — aramhorror 14
Let up hope for better, 4or5xp version of it somewhere in the future. +1 to base damage and to 'critical' or one or more chaos symbols (aka 'culist' and/or 'tablet') would be really nice. — XehutL 2
Alchemical Transmutation

This one seems similar to rogue's Burglary, yet more dangerous and limited. Majority of what is written for Burglary will apply here as well.

Pros:

  • rather easy test to solve (and independent from location)
  • perhaps being it a spell?

Cons:

  • charge based
  • slow card (for its full use you have to pay 4 actions and 1 resource)
  • net gain per use might be a bit unpredictable (and you should never add any card to its test)
  • somehow risky, can hurt you (1 or 2 wounds are quite likely)

In my opinion this cards is not worth adding for most scenarios simply because the actions are more precious than the resources in most cases (at least scenarios are built in that way right now). Also, the mystics already can generate resources via Forbidden Knowledge and it is simply more usable and effective than Alchemical Transmutation.

XehutL 2
Plucky

Plucky is arguably the best of the Composure assets released in Echoes of the Past. Like all five Composure cards, it costs 1XP & 1 resource, is Fast, provides stat bonuses for cash as a action, and has 1 sanity. Cheap, Fast, and is always a good combination, and the horror soak is a nice bonus. In particular, the Fast keyword allows it to be played while engaged with an enemy without triggering an attack of opportunity. This is probably more useful with a Composure that boosts or , but Plucky could also help parley or boost "Ashcan" Pete's for Shrivelling. It's also worth noting that, at only 1XP, investigators with access to experienced cards from two classes can choose from two different Composures, though only one may be in play at a time. Thus, William Yorick can choose between Plucky & Combat Training depending on whether he needs to boost & or & , respectively.

Save for Grounded, each Composure boosts 2 stats. In the case of Plucky, these are and --two of the more vital stats in the game. What's more, it pairs well with the otherwise lackluster Scrapper to cover all four stats for Survivors . No other class can cover all four stats with their Dunwich Permanent Talent and Carcosa Composure. Though some investigators can do so with the less efficient Core Talents (e.g., Jenny Barnes with Hard Knocks & Arcane Studies or Streetwise & Physical Training).

What really sets Plucky above the other Composures, though, is the ability of Survivors to recycle it, thus mitigating its main drawback of being discarded when it has taken just 1 horror. William Yorick is best suited to do so with his innate effect, though any Survivor can do so with Resourceful. In fact, William Yorick may, at present, be the best recipient for Plucky. In addition to being able to recycle it, he can use the boost to help investigate with his paltry 2, and Plucky's horror soak (repeatable with his effect) helps shore up his 6 sanity.

It also has my favorite card art from Echoes of the Past. Plucky indeed!

Herumen 464