News for December 2010
The Men Who Stare At Zoogs 4
A Call of Cthulhu Card of the Week by guest writer Marius Hartland
Call of Cthulhu LCG | Published 10 December 2010
In the tunnels of that twisted wood, whose low prodigious oaks twine groping boughs and shine dim with the phosphorescence of strange fungi, dwell the furtive and secretive Zoogs; who know many obscure secrets of the dream world and a few of the waking world, since the wood at two places touches the lands of men, though it would be disastrous to say where.
     - H.P. Lovecraft, The Dream Quest of Unknown Kadath
After the trip to the Dreamlands, Miskatonic University made sure to bring something back. Bag and tag in the name of science and an orderly universe. Experiment Subject #613b (The Twilight Beckons, F10) is something that came out of The Dreaming and illicit ESP experiments. A little gremlin that encourages others of its kind to cross over. One for the theme decks, then. Time to look back at the Dreamlands Asylum Packs, and find some way to break Furtive Zoog (Twilight Horror, F15) and its kin. What can go wrong when The Twilight Beckons?
A steady flow of Zoogs is preferable, even though it could be slightly difficult to mix in Miskatonic in a deck that centers on a generally neutral tribe. The Zoogs have a little bit of overlap with the playstyle of Miskatonic, though. Miskatonic likes to overextend. You keep playing their characters and just hope some survive long enough. To compensate and to avoid to run out of steam, the University has plenty of card draw. Still, this faction is most suited for either short game plans, or combo decks.
Zoogs are similar. The domain and resource system causes an effect called the "three-action soft cap," meaning that you can play up to three actions each turn, although there are ways to play more. Activating Zoogs from your domains can cause you to break the cap and do more in one turn.
In order to take full advantage of this, it's best to use cheap characters like Laboratory Assistant (Core Set, F29,) Hapless Graduate Student (The Horror Beneath the Surface, F23), or Clever Zoog (The Terrors of the Tide, F76). #613b brings these themes together. It gets you more Zoogs to resource, keeps your hand filled for backup, and allows you to drain domains to trigger other Zoogs.
Theme decks aside, even on its own, #613b can act as a draw engine, as it counts itself the turn it comes into play. The 'draw' effect is not a response, so it can triggered as many times as you'll be able to drain domains for it.
If the game goes well enough, Arkham Advertiser Archives (The Horror Beneath the Surface, F28) or The Spawn of Madness (The Thing from the Shore, F99) are good options to get more from your domains, and tap deeper into the Zoogs' potential.
The Miskatonic University will try to use that potential. It will take a lot of prodding and unethical experiments on the strange Dreamlands creature. Few of these scientists could resist using the creature as a perpetuum mobile, even if it means crossing every line in the book. Could you? And will there be consequences?

Based on the fiction of H.P. Lovecraft and his literary circle, Call of Cthulhu: The Card Game takes two players deep into the Cthulhu Mythos where investigators clash with the Ancient Ones and Elder Gods for the fate of the world. The Living Card Game format allows players to customize their gaming experience with monthly Asylum Pack expansions to the core game.

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Comments (4)

Published: 12/11/2010 10:09:04 PM

Thanks Marius.   Good point on the "extended play value" of the discussed Zoog.   I guess my mind has been warped of late with the very fast rapid deck-threats that many CoC players tend to play with.  Long-term developing (while great fun !) - is often non-viable against so many "cheap / fast" decks that can easily be built with all the cards currently in the game. 

Published: 12/10/2010 5:29:58 PM

@Roshi87: Yes, you do need quite a setup for it to work. I wouldn't say that Unearthing the Ancients is 'strictly better' though - For one, unearthing doesn't leave you with a character, so unearthing gains you 3 cards worth of advantage, but costs you one card, while the Zoog sticks. Also, the Zoog can potentially be activated again next turn, and the turn after. It is kind of like an Obsessive Insomniac that drains domains instead of sacrificing resources - and in some decks could easily complement it and help create a little redundancy and consistancy. If you can Zoog up your domains though, somehow, eventually things wil get a little crazy - even though that takes a little time and effort to do.

Published: 12/10/2010 5:24:24 PM

Yea, total crap card (no sarcasm on this one).

Published: 12/10/2010 4:22:00 PM

I'm a bit tired at the moment, but doesn't this card seem like a crappy deal for Miska.... pay 2....and get a 1-Combat, 1-Skill character....pretty lame in terms of cost for effect .....but then you get to pay an Action....and draw a single card !     Granted, you get to do it for each Zoog that enters play....and there are ways to make more than 1-Zoog come in on a turn rather easily, but as Marius points out - you still have to have Domains to pay for the Action cost.....and 2-resources per Domain to even get it to work "properly".   So if you played this right away on Turn-1, you would get no extra benefit, since only 1 of your Domains would even have 2-resources, and you'd have to use that one to play the Zoog (barring lucky draws like Itinerant Scholar in your first hand, or something). 

So the earliest you could "normally // reliably" get this to "work" would be your Turn-2, if you went first.  You have 2-Domains with 2-resources each, and another with 1.   You pay 2 and play this guy.  Then you get the "nice benefit" (sarcastic) of paying ANOTHER 2-(the other Domain) - just to draw 1-single card.   Oooooh.   Wow.    That seems like not nearly enough pop for the cost.    Couldn't you just play the Miska character card (cheaper overall cost, IIRC) - that allows you to draw a card when it comes into play ? (a lighter version of the Aspiring Artist, in that it's only 1-card, not 2, but you can use it whenever - it's not dependant on how many stories you may or may not have won yet, etc.)

Miska character (can't remember name) = Character + 1 Card Draw for ...2 or 3 (can't remember which)

New Zoog character = Character + 1 Card Draw for .... 4  (2 to play, 2 more just to use ability 1-time).


Heck, for raw card-draw, just use Unearthing the Ancients (IIRC) - for 3-cost = 3-Card Draws.    No ?

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