Thank you for pointing that out ~ the Rumor change is one of my House Rules…I shouldn't have included it in that example as it's not FAQ-approved.
Aye, the Terrible Experiment is probably the worst rumor from the base game. Don't worry, as soon as you start adding expansions, you'll find many other nightmarish challenges
To be fair, I house-ruled that the monsters on the card were removed via effects like a gate closing or another Mythos card stating that their Dimensional symbols/Monster Type etc were removed back tothe cup. It cost me a Terror level increase but saved me a fight with a Cthonian~
Any advice on introducing some challenge to solo games, using the base set only? So far I don't see how there's any challenge unless I choose to go up against Azathoth every time. The other Old Ones in the base game are just so incredibly easy to fight, in many cases. Azathoth forces you to play for a victory by seals, which is interesting. I think I would have had it, except that The Terrible Experiment came up while I was in another world and insta-killed me. Hastur is interesting and a little weird -- the trick is to awaken him without letting the terror rise, so you repeatedly close-not-seal the Woods and the Unvisited Isle and street sweepwhen possible.
The rest are jokes. One player hording clues will never, ever die to Nyarlathotep. Yig and Ithaqua actually die to a lot fo starting investigators with no power-ups at all. My Amanda started play with Fight, Marksman, and Wither, and killed Yig with just that, not even a gun. She didn't take a single scratch, although she would have taken one or two hits were it not for Eric Colt and a pile of clues. Ithaqua just requires you to hoard weapons. If you have 5 or 6 guns when he awakens, you win. Cthulhu is probably the hardest. You have to deal 19 damage to him on 7 attacks, which requires putting out 15 combat dice turn after turn. That's out of reach for beginning investigators, but it's incredibly deterministic. As soon as you find two .45s, you're good to go. Shub-Niggurath requires that you kill 3 or 4 monsters and buy 2 hands worth of enchanted weapons. Yog-Sothoth requires that you close a couple of gates and find a decent gun. It's all so easy and so deterministic I don't know what to do.
If the answer is "buy an expansion," what would be the best one to add some challegne to 1-investigator play? Black Goat of the Woods looks troubling.
yeah, final battle against the AOs from the base game is often very easy. I suggest you to use the Arkham Wiki to check out the epic battle cards from the Kingsport Horror set to see your pain quickly increasing. Or you can use the "revised" Ancient Ones released at Arkham Nights. The new Yig is brutal, and so many of the others.
Plus, consider adding some investigators (play solo with three investigators) and try to score a sealing victory each time. The game is much better if you go for sealing instead of gearing up for final battle
We have dragged Reason from her throne and set in her place the Empress of Dreams [Liber Endvra]
For those of you who play "all-in" games (using every aspect of every expansion) with four Investigators, I offer you the folllowing variant. Of course, if you play with more or less than four Investigators, your mileage will definitely vary.
Mythos 0 - Turn 4: As you put into play the Mythos card, only place gates in Arkham. Ignore Double-Doom cards and Rumors. If you reveal a Gate location on an expansion board, resolve everything else…Monster Movement, Clue token, and Headline/Environment. Starting on Turn 5, play each Mythos card, as normal, revealing Gates anywhere on any board. Rationale: In this way, you should, based on the percentages for each Gate opening, have 2-3 Gates open in the first four Turns, instead of 4-5.
Rumors: Reduce the # of tokens, as if you were playing with two Investigators for Rumors such as Nightmare Pool, but for The Key and the Gate, consider 4 Investigators in play. Rationale: Rumors should be difficult to pass, but not impossible, given the great distances Investigators must travel when all boards are in play.
Maximum # of Gates: 10. Rationale: There are 20 Unstable Locations across the four boards. Ten open Gates represents 50% of all of the locations with the potential to spawn a Gate.
Maximum # of Monsters in Arkham and the Outskirts: 5. Rationale: As with Rumors, above, playing as if you had two Investigators would warrant a Maximum # of Monsters in Arkham at 2 + 3= 5 and for simplicity, I've used the same value for the Maximum # of Monsters in the Outskirts.
Curse of the Dark Pharaoh: No changes (I currently have incorporated both the original and the new version, so play includes both "Barred from Neighborhood" cards and Patrol Markers.
Dunwich Horror: No changes
The King in Yellow: No changes
Kingsport Horror: Apply a Rift Marker/Token to the Rift Track only when a new Gate opens on any board, including Gate Bursts. Optional: As the Rifts occur over the town of Kingsport, Place the newly opened Rift at the location designated by the last placed Rift Marker/Token on the Rift Track instead of at the Gate location on the Mythos card. Rationale: Performing "Rift Duty" can prove boring for most Investigators. At least having a potential combat in Kingsport should make things more interesting. As for the Rifts opening in Kingsport, the very premise of the expansion points out that these tears in the fabric are happening over this coastal city.
Black Goat of the Woods: No changes
Innsmouth Horror: Place a Deep Ones Token on the Deep Ones Rising (DOR) Track only when a monster enters a vortex. Additionally, once the DOR Track is full, add a Doom Token to the Doom Track instead of automatically awakening the Great Old One. This happens during every Mythos Phase while the DOR Track remains filled. Rationale: Similar to the Rifts in Kingsport, the DOR Track should not be the focus of the Investigator's skills and abilities, but there are times when they may need to travel there and deal with the situation.
Lurker at the Threshold: You may not use the Power tokens as Clue tokens when the card is exhausted. Thus, if an Investigator takes a Blood Pact, exhausts the card and sacrifices 3 Stamina to receive the 3 Power tokens, place them on the exhausted Blood Pact card. During the next Turn's Upkeep Phase, refresh the Blood Pact card, allowing the Investigator to use the Power tokens. Rationale: Given the currently accepted rule, it's far too easy to exploit the Lurker.
Miskatonic Horror: No change
That's it ~ a few tweaks and I can tell you that it works very well. Again, Arkham Horror isn't about winning, it's a about the story, the theme. As I've said many times before, "it's about the journey, not the destination." If I can maintain a win rate consistent with the average based on 10,000 games on Tibs' spreadsheet, while enjoying the game that much more, great!
Cheers, Joe/the Professor