"Throw the Book at Them!"

So we are talking about e.g. throwing the Necronomicon at an enemy with +3 fight and after dealing 3 dmg to it without spending 4 secrets ? And that we can do at least 2 times. Thats a very refreshing way to abuse that old thingy.

Con · 2
You still have to spend the secrets. This does not ignore all costs, just one action (compare the wording with Knowledge is Power for example) — Soul_Turtle · 405
Double or Nothing

pretaboo: Silas Marsh with Versatile can commit all his hand into dodge/attack test and double it, even Rise to the Occasion x2 if wanted - surpassing it by tons of value (+6? +8?), => then just grab net/spear back to the hand with all skills commited. Imagine you Evade as 1st action, get +4 actions, then attack for +4 actions again and +tons of damage +card draws etc. Get 3 resources (if have none), put spear again - play all hand again. Melting bosses.

Fun, but forbidden for a reason.

Nitie · 4
False Surrender

This is a really good card for anyone fighting with bows, swords, or Mauser-style guns. (With automatics it probably gets outshined by Sleight of Hand

You spend 1 card, 1 action, and the normal resource cost of your weapon to put the weapon into play and make an attack with it. That works out to making this basically read "0 cost, fast: gain a bonus action" as long as you draw it before you need to play your weapon, which is already pretty good. The going rate for bonus actions tends to be 2 resources, and while most are less situational than this one, 0 is a lot better than 2.

But it's more than just a bonus action card. It

  • Lets you keep your weapon in hand until you need it, without fearing attacks of opportunity, and still spend a full turn fighting with it without warning
  • Changes the test to agility
  • Is a tactic and trick event
  • and a play/parley/activate/fight action

In your level 0 deck the first bullet point is probably the most important. Low-XP investigators are slow to set up and struggle to find everything they need. Lacking good tutoring and burst economy they often must make awkward choices about what to prioritize putting into play. Engine cards like Leo or Lone Wolf generate more value the sooner you get them down, and Lockpicks only gives you 1 investigate per turn, so putting off getting your weapons down is often tempting, but dangerous. This gives you an extra turn or two to set up.

As you start upgrading though, you'll find this has so many good interactions that it almost accidentally accumulates bonus value. You can make this fast with Chuck, Roland, Alessandra, Farsight, and so on. You can turn a resource profit with Sleuth or Crafty. You can find it with Friends or Plan or Bewitching. You can use it with Fine Clothes to set up Exploit Weakness, and so on.

Why is it particularly good with the Mauser in your opinion? That gives you +1 combat (or +2 at 2 XP), which does not help you, because FS tests agility instead. — Susumu · 335
It's not really that it is particularly good with Mauser, but that Sleight of Hand is pretty bad with Mauser. As such this becomes possibly the best way to cheat Mauser into play. Although many Mauser players can also do well with I'll Take That — OrionAnderson · 44
For many people with green access, agility and combat+1 will be very similar tests. Also I must confess I have always without thinking about it treated fight/evade/iinvestigate actions on assets as though they said "+X skill value" rather than +X combat/will/intellect/agility — OrionAnderson · 44
Oh, included the bit about all the action tags it has but forgot to mention that this makes triggering Haste dead simple. — OrionAnderson · 44
Butterfly Swords

This should have been green. In principle, it could be really powerful for a specific playstyle. Unfortunately, that playstyle doesn't really exist yet, at least not for anyone who can include the card and cope with its quirks.


--This is not a weapon for boss killers or full time fighter. -- If you plan to fight three or more times per turn it is very bad, and lots of characters can fight more than three times when the chips are down. --It is terrible against retaliate, damage reduction, enemies that punish attacking/damaging them, and bad stuff token effects. --It is very efficient for flex-fighters who want to attack only once or twice per turn --Especially if they care about evasion or oversuccess --Unfortunately the two hand slots are a big ask for flexes --And few people who would want this can actually include it

The Good

  • Dealing 3 damage in one action is really good, and this can do that once per turn forever
  • It can also deal 4 damage over two actions like a normal weapon.
  • Against 1-3 health enemies you're killing much more reliably in fewer actions, although also at more risk of triggering fail effects. Compared to Machete or Brand, you get two chances instead of 1 to deal 1 damage in 1 action. If you only need 2 actions you only need to pass your +foot test which should be very high skill. If you need 3 damage in two action you do need to pass the foot test but only one of the two basic attacks, where Brand-likes have to pass 2 out of 2 checks.

The Weird

  • As Lockpicks has shown us, combining 2 stats can be really good.
  • However, there is more support for stacking +foot +book together than +fist +foot, IMO.
  • Also unlike lockpicks, this only uses foot sometimes, and it forces you to make fist+1 checks first.
  • Most guardians only have 2 or 3 agility, so the second attack is only +1-2 points better than the first one without further boosting. Guardians also have lots of other ways to boost attacks with XP. Making a +1 to hit weapon Reliable or Enchanted for instance might help you more.
  • If your agility is 4+, then the gap between your first and second skill checks becomes a problem. On standard the distance between "uncomfortably risky" and "all-but-guaranteed" tends to be about 2 skill points. A 5/4 investigators swings this at 6/9/6, but either the 6s are very risky or the 9 is overkill.
  • The whole point of doing all your killing in your first action is to spend your time doing something else useful. But this takes up both of your hands, which greatly limits your options.
  • So the ideal user for these would be a high-agility flex character who can get clues with their hands full.

Synergies and Possibilities.

Part 1 -- Should Have Been Green

  • Lots of rogues reach 7 or 8 natively with the 2-damage swing, which is better than their other level 2 weapons
  • Triggers lucky cigarettes easily
  • You could use Hidden Pocket to carry a Lockpicks or Thieves Kit alongside
  • with Dirty Fighting you can evade, get +2 to the weaker first swing and then follow up with the +agility second swing for huge skill tests and action compression.
  • Evade also turns off retaliate
  • Sadly, Winifred/Kymani/Finn can't access this and Skids is still really bad.

Part 2 -- Other clue options

If you can't scam hand slots for an investigate tool, you could rely on snapping up clues from events/allies/skill cards or investigating with spells. That would make you some kind of weird tri-stat build by maybe it's doable if you stack multi-boosters like Crystalline Elder Sign, Dark Horse, Geas, or Composures.

Part 3 -- As a sidearm

You could of course plan to use these just for one 3-damage action per turn and then to follow up with other attack forms. You could soften groups with Mk 1 Grenades and then split attacks to finish multiple wounded enemies, supplement with a spell, or get Bandolier, Boxing Gloves and some martial arts moves. With off-class access you could fold in other once-per-round shenanigans like Chuck-boosted actions, Hatchet throws, and the like.

Part 4 -- The secret super-synergy

The card that actually breaks this wide open is, obviously, Sled Dog. With even 2 dogs down you get two chances per turn to deal 2 damage in one action, at +2 and +AGI respectively, and if you proc retaliate you can throw the dogs under the bus. If you can reach 3 dogs you now have 3 damage twice per round, or the ability to zoom across the map to deliver your 3-damage flurry. If only Leo Anderson's agility weren't 1.

Yeah, this would work a lot better in green. On a similar note, why isn't Kicking the Hornet's Nest blue? It would work so perfectly there... — NightgauntTaxiService · 269
I mean, Blue already has On the Hunt and First Watch to find enemies, although maybe they could use one more option along those lines. And they do have lots of ways to turn enemies into clues already. Green is getting more and more clue and economy cards every cycle that only work when enemies are present, so we should expect them to keep getting ways to find enemies also. — OrionAnderson · 44
I understand, I was just thinking that Kicking the Hornet's Nest would help Guardian with their economy issues. — NightgauntTaxiService · 269

Note: this card does NOT exhaust after you fail a parley and it attacks you. So it will attack multiple times if you fail multiple parleys in the same round.

As per the FAQ, "Enemies only exhaust after attacking if they perform an attack during step 3.3 of the enemy phase. Unless otherwise noted, all other enemy attacks do not cause that enemy to exhaust".

Blackhaven · 3