Emergency Aid

How many allies can benefit from the full heal (AKA, how many allies have 3+ health)? nine (as of The Search For Kadath, and excluding Jake Williams).

Of these options, Beat Cop (2), Guard Dog and Agency Backup are the ones that most synergies with Emergency Aid. Trusted can push some allies into the three health range, and of course all investigators have enough health to use the full effect.

But really, you two main uses for this card are in an ally focused deck, or in a Mark Harrigan deck to prevent the bad side of Sophie. Take Second Wind instead for all other cases; cheaper and with free card replenishment!

Lucaxiom · 48
As an Insight it is also a very good card for [Joe Diamond](/card05002) decks. If played from the hunch deck it let's him heal 2 damage for just one action at no other cost. — Trigunner · 1
Clarity of Mind

Why do we pay for insurance? It's not a great feeling, having to pay a continuous fee to be insured against a situation that is unlikely to occur and that you're probably trying to avoid in the first place. And yet, just the knowledge of a safety-net can give us peace of mind when dealing with the unknown, and may even prevent missed opportunities due to a fear of the associated risks.

With that clarity in mind, let's talk about Clarity of Mind. This is an insurance card, and you have to be of the mindset that "things are likely to go south" in order to accept this card into your deck. It does nothing to prevent bad things from happening, only the ability to undo their effects. As such, if you take no horror, then this card is useless. Heck, if you're guaranteed to take your sanity threshold minus one horror, this card is still useless. Thus it's efficacy is tied strictly to your likelihood of crossing that sanity threshold, which for mystics, is unlikely, given all but one have eight sanity or more (the one being Diana Stanley, with a still respectable 7 sanity).

...Except it's not unlikely, because mystics have to contend with one more source of horror than normal, on top of treacheries, enemies, locations and the symbol tokens; themselves. Staples like Shrivelling, Ward of Protection, and Forbidden Knowledge, are all cards that leave one extremely susceptible to one bad encounter card or test, and it can lead to the tragic situation where a large portion of these cards that are in play, in your hand, or in your deck cannot be used without being defeated.

As such, Clarity of Mind is an excellent card for enabling a horror incursion deck. Agnes Baker is the most obvious candidate for such an archetype, but it's also a strong pairing with Arcane Research (especially since you can use the spell discount to get upgraded Clarity of Mind). It's basically an auto-include in a Carolyn Fern deck, and the pair of cards Fight or Flight and Meat Cleaver need cards that can sustain their risky play-style. Finally, Clarity of Mind will insure you against some of the upgraded versions of cards that start dealing or deal additional horror; AKA Shrivelling (5), Scrying (3), and Blinding Light (2).

Lucaxiom · 48
The Arcane Slot needs to be mentioned here. That makes it incredibly costly for Agnes to run this card because it means she is sacrificing a ton of cluefinding or combat potential. — CaiusDrewart · 1508
Blackjack

Let's give Blackjack a new review, long after it's debut and after the Taboo List has given it a better chance of viability, now Machete cost 2 exp:

I can summarise the benefit of including Blackjack in your deck in one word: consistency. I'd argue that it is the single most consistent weapon in the entire game, as is espouses multiple facets of that virtue:

  • It's cheap, meaning that you'll be hard pressed to not be able to play it from the moment it enters your hand.
  • It's has unlimited usage: no "uses: X", exhaust, or discard conditions.
  • It eliminates the difference between an attack on an enemy in some else's threat area and an attack on an enemy anywhere else.

Arkham Horror has a wonderful unpredictability to it, that often means your best laid plans when crafting the ultimate deck will not survive first contact with the mythos. Everything from the catch-22 of not being able to play a weapon without incurring an attack of opportunity from an engaged enemy, to the unpredictableness of where any enemy will show up, who it engages, and what dastardly text will be written on it to counter certain investigator staples. To those that have been burned too many times by this damnable chaos, Blackjack will offer some reprieve.

Is it a good weapon? Hell no; it's a one cost asset after all. With no zero cost weapons in existence yet, Blackjack represents the bargain barrel deal of armaments. But it's cheapness is a strength in it's own:

  • Discarding assets is a worryingly common punishment that the mythos will mete out; the best counter to this is to offer a cheap tribute that will keep you far more valuable allies and weapons around, like Blackjack.
  • You may want a few extra weapons in you deck to increase the likelihood of drawing one at the start, but if you're already strapped for cash, a cheap card like Blackjack may be able to buy you time until your better weapons show up, and until you acquire the resources to play them.

In the end, this card isn't going to be a part of any fancy combo, nor the centrepiece to any deck, nor the subject of a memorable moment in your Arkham Horror career, but this does not make it a bad card, just a boringly average one.

Lucaxiom · 48
I just can't see how this card is "average" at all. It's easily one of the 10 worst cards in the game. As for the two upsides you point out: if you're looking for a cheap item to protect your more valuable stuff from the encounter deck, there are tons of cheap options out there available to every investigator that--unlike Blackjack--actually are sometimes useful to have in play. As to the point about having redundant weapons, I agree that this is important. But Blackjack fails here. Since it cannot deal +1 damage, it simply cannot effectively fill this role. — CaiusDrewart · 1508
I have to agree with Caius, it's one of the worst possible cards you can include in your deck because it effectively does nothing. For 1 resource you could have had Knife, which at least gives you the option to hit for 2 damage if you need it, or for one more resource you could have had Kukri to hit for 2 if you manage to succeed and have the extra action to spare. Heck, you could have even slotted in Prepared for the Worst and grabbed an actually good weapon like the Thompson or the Enchanted Blade. — StyxTBeuford · 438
I dont see the average either. Never ever have I played this in a deck and not wished it was a Knife — Tsuruki23 · 816
Close Call

So, several cycles later, this card still isn't a must-have, but it's still good, if situational. The main use for it is dealing with enemies with either attachments or tokens that you want to reset: the most obvious is any kind of cultist picking up doom. In that sense, it has gotten competition in the form of Dumb Luck. Dumb Luck costs 0 XP and has arguably better skill icons, but there are still reasons to take Close Call.

For one, Dumb Luck requires you to be the one doing the evading. This is a bigger deal than it might seem, especially when coupled with the second problem, which is that you have to exactly fail by 1 or by 2. Technically you could fail by 0, I suppose. If you really need to get an enemy with doom off the table, having to figure out how to set up the "correct" failure can be a precious waste of time, especially if you accidentally succeed and have to engage the enemy again.

So far, I've mostly played Close Call near the end of the Forgotten Age. Especially in the scenario Shattered Aeons, being able to take certain enemies off the table for a bit can be a very needed moment of relief. And don't forget you can Close Call your fellow investigators' evades as well, so even someone like William Yorick or "Ashcan" Pete who might not be evading much could slot one or two of this in.

wern212 · 23
Joey "The Rat" Vigil

Over-costed as HECK. holy moly. Joey "The Rat" Vigil costs 4 resources to play and a resource to use! If you want to save some item-playing actions just go and get Leo De Luca, by the time the former has saved you 2 actions he actually has cost you the same amount as just playing a Leo De Luca who generates flexible and omni-usable actions in spades.

I'm not one of those players who thinks Leo De Luca is an autopick, I think the high cost offsets his usefulness a lot, Joey "The Rat" Vigil has all of Leo De Luca's weaknesses and none of that strength, I.E, Joey "The Rat" Vigil is largely doing the same thing Leo De Luca does, but he is way, way, WAAAAAAYYYY worse.

Yes. If you want to nit pick. Joey "The Rat" Vigil does his thing in a window, meaning that you can replace an empty gun or the like mid-combat, this niche is nowhere NEAR good enough to match the omni-usefulness of Leo.

Note that even if Leo didn't exist, Joey "The Rat" Vigil would still be garbage. I MIGHT put him in play for 2 resources, meaning that you'dd play Joey for sheer stats, have no such allies and desperately need one, Joey "The Rat" Vigil should have been that ally.

Tsuruki23 · 816
I agree that Joey's too expansive. But for Preston he's pretty fun, especially with all the cheap survivor soaks. — Django · 2027
Yeah, the Leo comparison is pretty sad here. Even if you activate Joey's ability every single turn without fail, I think Leo's passive +1 action is still far superior. And, of course, you won't realistically be able to achieve anything close to that with Joey. — CaiusDrewart · 1508