|Lost Rites Spur New Struggles
A Call of Cthulhu: The Card Game Spotlight
|Call of Cthulhu LCG | Published 15 June 2012||Rating||8 votes|
The world of Call of Cthulhu: The Card Game has just moved past the halfway point of the Revelations cycle. The themes that opened in Written and Bound and Words of Power have deepened and broached upon distant realms, and the recent release of Ebla Restored, the cycle’s third Asylum Pack, has given the game’s eight factions even more reason to pursue forbidden Tomes and dark knowledge.
Still, for all the effort the game’s Investigators, Cultists, and Monsters have put into hunting down old journals, arcane treatises, and strange ledgers, it seems as though we haven’t quite yet uncovered something central to the matter…Something lies just beyond our grasp…It seems that we have caught sight only of the silhouette of an edge of the matter, and though we approach it, it has to this point remained indistinct. Some horrifying truth exists, lying just beyond our comprehension…
The Hideous Design
Dark knowledge exists not to sit idle, but to empower Lost Rites. With the release of Lost Rites, we’ll more closely grasp the influence of an intelligent design at work. The Asylum Pack introduces two new conspiracies, Into the Woods (Lost Rites, 71) and Combing the Archives (Lost Rites, 70). At last, these conspiracies begin to hint at the design behind the cycle’s struggles. Finally, they begin to reveal how the powers responsible for acquiring the cycle’s many Tomes intend to use them!
While the minions of Shub-Niggurath head to the woods to spread their terror and engage in their feral practices, the daring faculty, scientists, and investigators of Miskatonic University have coordinated a secret effort to find the means of driving back the Ancient Ones. The secrecy surrounding their conspiracy enables them to avoid many of the dangers that typically hinder their progress. Safely Combing the Archives in the deepest aisles of their University libraries, Miskatonic University’s heroic characters can focus on delving into the arcane mysteries they need in order to uncover even deeper secrets and finding a means to combat the might of those Elder Gods who threaten to destroy the earth.
Combing the Archives is a true game-changer for Miskatonic University. Not only does it keep their members safe from harm, but it accelerates their desperate race to victory. To the investigators of Miskatonic, the conspiracy’s two Investigation struggles mean two potential success tokens. Its secondary benefit isn’t to be discounted, either. The ability to bring into play all Tomes from each player’s discard pile helps further establish the Miskatonic nerds as the experts at all things academic, and it can lead to some neat tricks with cards like The Necromonicon (Secrets of Arkham, 9) and the less commonly used Feast of Famine (Core Set, 37).
But no matter how hard they work, whatever the bravest members of Miskatonic University struggle to build, the Ancient Ones may ultimately destroy…or corrupt.
While the investigators toil at their research, forwarding their clandestine conspiracy, the Lunatics, artists, and servitors of Hastur propagate the maddening messages of the King in Yellow. Lost Rites gives new fuel to their efforts with The King in Yellow Folio (Lost Rites, 68). Even as this sacrilegious Tome provides its wielder with Fast and two Terror icons to strip away opposing characters’ sanity, it imposes an even more sinister presence upon the game; it converts all icon struggles at any story to which the attached character is committed to Terror struggles.
Just when your Miskatonic professors thought they were safely at work in the library’s mustiest archives, The King in Yellow Folio can turn their work to ruin. It’s as if the other icon struggles are premised upon basic metaphysical assumptions about the nature of conflict, study, and truth. Few minds can stand the strain of having those base assumptions called into question.
Even the basic assumptions about turn sequences in Call of Cthulhu may not hold fast when Hastur’s prophets take their work to heart. Your opponents will almost certainly seek to avoid committing to the same story as whichever madman holds The King in Yellow Folio. Still, by attaching the Tome to the restless dead, Jiang Shi (Curse of the Jade Emperor, 33), you can force them to abandon their investigations or confront sanity-melting visions of reality. Even rival Ancient Ones become vulnerable when Hastur preys upon their vestigial Scotophobia (Core Set, 97).
Play by Your Own Rules
With the release of Lost Rites, we’ll see each faction attempt to use the dark knowledge of their newly-acquired Tomes to implement powerful new ways to play by their own rules. Why should Ancient Ones bother studying like life was a test? Why should Miskatonic’s professors risk their lives if the answers to the problems they face lie within the pages of a book? Why should anyone be free from the elemental terrors of existence?
Life isn’t constant. It’s ruled by entropy, and the rules are changing…
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.