|Bringing Law and Order to The Breathing Jungle
A Call of Cthulhu: The Card Game spotlight by guest writer Marius Hartland
|Call of Cthulhu LCG | Published 14 October 2011|
You needn’t think I’m crazy, Eliot–plenty of others have queerer prejudices than this. Why don’t you laugh at Oliver’s grandfather, who won’t ride in a motor? If I don’t like that damned subway, it’s my own business; and we got here more quickly anyhow in the taxi.
–H. P. Lovecraft, Pickman’s Model
All jungles have predators and wild animals, but not all of them are vast, wooded places. Nor do all Relics need to be ancient or come from eldritch backgrounds in order to hold power. This is a good thing for one of the factions of Call of Cthulhu: The Card Game, as it means The Blackwood Agency can have its own Relic, despite the fact they are generally in the business of destroying dangerous items of ancient and eldritch origin. Though Relics, as defined in the Ancient Relics cycle, are objects that have power, how they were imbued with such power is left unclear.
The Agency gains power through a belief in law, justice, and order. These things are earned through the blood and sacrifice of the agents who swore to protect humanity, no matter the cost. Agency characters feel inspired by heroes like Eliot Ness, who went above and beyond the call of duty to prove that no one is untouchable–not even Al Capone.
Eliot Ness’ Handcuffs (The Breathing Jungle, 50) have become a symbol of this unwavering belief. Powered by his zeal, imbued with his values, his handcuffs have acquired some supernatural properties of their own. They now have the power to remove Willpower and Fast, which can be useful in certain decks. However, in a faction that does a lot of shooting and wounding, the fact that they also remove Toughness and Invulnerability might be more important.
Despite their tendencies toward law and order and their efforts to protect humanity, The Agency has been spotted at many gaming tables joining forces with Hastur. This is because both are good at playing aggressive control strategies. The combination is sound: What can’t go insane can often be shot, and what can’t be shot can often be driven insane. Both faction have cheap and powerful characters, and when you explore the mix of Terror and Investigation alongside all the wounding, the combination offers you many ways to dominate and win stories.
Furthermore, this unholy alliance plugs another hole in Hastur’s powers–its weakness to the Willpower keyword. A self-recurring solution like Eliot Ness’ Handcuffs lets you address that weakness multiple times and increases the partnership’s ability to remove even more characters. But that’s not the strangest trick the cuffs have to offer: They can also temper the attitudes of your characters.
Heroic and Villainous also count as keywords. Thus, if you have problems running Victoria Glasser (Core Set, 82) in your deck while Thomas F. Malone (Core Set, 1) is on the table, you can throw the cuffs on Thomas, and he’ll stop preventing Victoria from joining your side. Or you can play Victoria to drive an opponent’s character insane, and despite whatever atrocities she commits, Thomas will have no hesitations showing up for the party once Victoria’s been handcuffed. After all, the Blackwood Agency may have their ideals, but they’re hardly untouchable. Ultimately, in Call of Cthulhu: The Card Game no one’s incorruptible.
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.
Just a proofreading note: I'm pretty sure it should be Eliot Ness's Handcuffs, since the s's at the end of Ness are not plural markers.
A nice and flexible card. The only downside I can see is that it's unique.
As always, thanks for the interesting preview, Marius!
Hahah, Elliot Ness' Handcuffs.... Brilliant! :D
Nice flavour touch, but propably won't ever use this unless sideboard is implemented into this game (or unless i wield an agency/hastur insanity deck....)
Interesting tactics using them to remove undesirable keywords from your own characters. This could also be used to protect a friendly Monster, Criminal, etc... character from an enemy ability to prey on that subtype.