Breach the Door

This card can reduce a shroud to zero. This means it can be used by a guardian with no enemies to make it to where even ones like Daniela can safely investigate even high shroud locations. It's also thematic. Frustrated you're dumb with an INT of 1? Just break everything.

It does get outplayed by other guardian abilities (lessons learned, evidence) once upgrades are available, but its a decent level 0 mid-tier card.

drjones87 · 100
I actually don't think it gets one upped by other higher level cards like lesson learned and evidence. The functionality is very different, as its not a burst clue effect, its an effect that lets you solo a location of clues, which in 4 player is a titanic upgrade for guardian clue power, and in some scenarios it absolutely will save the day even if other people are helping.. — dezzmont · 149
Making Preparations

"Until the end of investigation phase" while this is drawn in Upkeep Phase means the 2 boosted skills and 2 reduced skills could be tested in Mythos Phase, before you can start using boosted skills in Investigation Phase.

5argon · 2103
Inspiring Presence

I think this card very much needs a taboo of either (max once or twice a round) Because it’s a level 0 card which with the right set up can lead to spiraling combos.

“Inspired by the stars”

I’m sure there are other ways to recur this card, but the one which I think has the largest impact is its synergy with written in the stars. There are ways to facilitate making sure this is the card which you discard off the top of the deck, characters with access to scroll of secrets, rogues with friends in low places, or mystics with scrying. Because the card is committed each test, you can even continue past deck draw as long as you reshuffle while inspiring presence is in the limbo state outlined in the rule book. (And the horror soak doubly encourages this)

From there, it’s just a matter of deciding what ally you want to target with the refresh. The two which I think have immediate potential: Abigail Foreman and Chuck Ferguson as these both give access to fast abilities which give you a chance to take a skill test. It’s not fully infinite but the longer you can keep passing those skill tests the longer you can go.

Malcoto · 2
Putting aside that few, if any, investigators can play any of these combinations of cards, you'll need your ally and your deck peeking option already in hand or in play, Written in the Stars in hand, get lucky enough that Inspiring Presence turns up during one of these peeks and hopefully on a turn where you have multiple skill checks available, all to get to use an ally's ability two or three more times? If you can line all that up, you deserve it! — housh · 141
I don't know that a multi card combo that lets you use Chuck or Abigail multiple times in one turn is overpowered. You need Inspiring Presence on top of your deck when you play Written in the Stars, which is already a pretty big ask without running other cards to set it up. You then have to find and pass multiple tests to trigger Inspiring Presence. And if you do line it all up perfectly, I still don't think the examples given are OP. Chuck Fergus requires you to have multiple trick/tactic cards on top of the various combo cards you're already using, and I can't think of any tome that OP breaks the game when triggered repeatedly. I agree Inspiring Presence can be elevated quite a bit with the combos you've suggested, but I think it's pretty far from OP/broken. — Pseudo Nymh · 2
Let's count xp: 4-10 XP for two copies of an ally with good effect like Abigail and 0-4 xp for two versatile to get the stars or the presence in your deck if you have not the luck to have access two both cards. That makes roughly half of a campaign in xp if you have the wrong Charakter. (Don't including card draw, costs etc.). — Tharzax · 1
Actually this combo with Trigger Man + Burglary could mean infinite resources, but I'm still not sure it's worth the effort. — SSW · 187
I think double research notes on abigail make for a powerful combo, if you tutor your deck successfully with scroll of secrets you can generate infinite clues. With Trigger Man + Burglary, you can get infinite resources, and with double double on winifred, infinite card draw. Rogues also have an easier time setting this up with the friends in low places, clever-experienced option, since you're checking 9 cards at once. — Malcoto · 2
I agree it's difficult to set up, but it's not much more difficult to set up than other loops which would still be possible if cards like [quick thinking]( weren't tabooed. My point is that for consistencies sake they should probably place a taboo on this card as well. — Malcoto · 2
Kicking the Hornet's Nest

This is one of the best bruiser cards in recent memory and is required in all bruiser builds that can take it.

The main role of the bruiser character is to keep enemies off of cluers. Most are able to do this with just a weapon up and don't need a whole lot of setup. There is nothing more annoying then, than having your bruiser spend three actions doing functionally nothing, and then the next turn you draw two enemies from mythos. You inevitably probably can't deal with both, and one of them gets to either take a free shot at you, or worse lock down your cluer.

This card does many things a typical bruiser wants to do. It thins the encounter deck of enemies by forcing a spawn now. Those three actions you would have essentially wasted, you get to now take two others doing what you're designed to do.

Honestly, the card would be great if it just did that. But it also has the potential for massive resource gain (if you pick a 3 HP enemy, you basically played an emergency cache) and you even get a clue out of it, which can help thin out particularly high shroud value locations.

It's also one of the only cards that can bypass concealment (concealment procs when you draw an enemy per wording in TSK manual, and this card specifically has you spawn the enemy, not draw it).

The only thing bad about this card is it can whiff the search. But if it does, your enemy frequency was pretty low anyway (or you just got really unlucky).

Tldr this card forces enemies on to your enemy handler, which is something they want anyway, and gives you a clue and a crap ton of resources for one action. Honestly a little too powerful and should be automatically included in any bruiser that can take it.

drjones87 · 100
Yeah. I'm very surprised that they made it a 0xp card. — fiatluxia · 52
It is somewhere in between "On the Hunt" (0) and "Dran to the Flame", and has disadvantages to both of them. Compared to OtH (0), it draws you an additional mythos card, not replaces your draw in the mythos phase. Compared to DttF it gives you an uncertain amount of resources instead of an additional clue, which might be great, if you draw a 3 health enemy, but a meh substitute, if you draw some rats, or worse, a Whippoorwill. I'm not saying this card is garbage, it looks fine in the right decks. But I wouldn't say it's too good to be level 0. — Susumu · 234
It's also in the rouges card pool which rather evade than killing enemies. — Tharzax · 1
Descent into Madness

Really weird card. First, the art is personally a bit ick to me, "wet-looking realism" isn't my preferred style.

Second, this thing's balancing is absurdly variable; either it just surges into something harmless, surges into something bad, or costs you an action before throwing something bad at you. Add in the fact that there are 2 of these in the encounter deck (almost certainly back to back, because encounter decks are sentient and malevolent) and you could go from "nothing-nothing-Ghoul Minion" to "nothing-nothing-Corpse Dweller" to "lose an action-lose an action-get an Asylum Gorger thrown in your face." Yes, I understand that randomness is an inherent element in a card game like Arkham, but this degree of it doesn't feel right.

Third, Descent into Madness does nothing with the rest of its set. No "If there is a hidden card in your hand..." trigger, no "For each hidden card in your hand..." reference, just a Revelation effect that feels more at home in the Core Set's Striking Fear. This is a bit of a letdown, especially due to how innovative the rest of the set is (or at least was, on release) with the Hidden keyword.

Very "eh" card. Best thing I can say about it is it's a masterclass in why Surge should virtually never be printed on cards that actually alter the game state; Surge is a very blunt tool, and the variability it adds to a card can make the element of random chance go from "present" to "overpowering."