Jim's Trumpet

Unlike the regular version, this one is actually NOT unique. So feel free to take it with you on your trip to outer space. I'm sure whatever species you'd encounter would appreciate some smooth jazz. Now that's an upgrade!

Nenananas · 238
impressive for the keen eye. — IvanYHYu · 4

I think it is a fun card in 3~4 players with fighters who can't quite finish the enemy fast enough (or having to use some actions to setup and engage). You can be the the team's enemy finisher with this Spell. The key to full potential is you go later and finish off enemies on others without engaging, so you have more action to spam Wither to the enemy from the side line.

  • If you go first and you can't finish it, the enemy will rehydrate and get its reduced heath back. The goal is to make it withers to death due to reduced health inside your turn.
  • If you made a friendly-fire hit, it only cause 1 damage to friend, while the enemy may still get reduced health due to symbol anyway. So it is a good deal to help out 8~9 health fighters without them scared as much as Shrivelling and its upgrades.
  • There is no question about reserving spell charges, big or small fries you can help getting it off your friends.
  • The reduced fight then further decrease the chance of friendly-fire in the next try.
  • All the symbols equals semi-success instead of completely doing nothing, you may guess you can probably can peel off an enemy from a friend with HP equal to amount of your remaining actions, regardless of harsh symbols. (But take care of their special effects on failure or Retaliate.)

Also probably better as a one-of because it uses no charges and commit icon is weird. Rely on repeated Arcane Initiate instead of purchasing two copies.

5argon · 6274
Pendant of the Queen

This card is S tier as scenario tech. With a deck that can assemble it, it's one of the strongest tech against dangerous Hunter enemies (and one of the few that works against Elite), and its teleportation ability is invaluable in any scenario that requires extensive backtracking.

Outside of its use as scenario tech, I'd rate the post-taboo pendant as a B+ card in multiplayer. A hot take I know but hear me out!

Without support

The pendant is always 3 testless clues globally even without support, and that's already better and cheaper than Working a Hunch. But unlike Working a Hunch, there's a few strings attached:

  • Assembly required: You need to assemble the pendant before doing anything. In a slower-drawing seeker deck, Segment of Onyx are dead draws that gum up your hand, costing you valuable time in scenarios that demand speed.
  • Limited uses: Even in a fast seeker deck, it's only 3 uses, so it doesn't work as a deck-cycling payload. Fast decks also lack for deck space due to the amount of draw they need to pack and have a hard time fitting the Pendant in for just 3 uses.

So while in theory 3 better copies of Working a Hunch can fit into any deck, it's actually quite rare to see decks taking the taboo'd pendant without building around it because of the above limitations.

Building around

Recharging the pendant creates some interesting deckbuilding puzzles with a strong payoff if you manage it: one extra testless clue a turn isn't that amazing for the support needed to enable it, but that's made up the additional safety margin the pendant adds by the other two options it gives.

  • Eldrich Sophist: The bog-standard way to enable such a build is Eldritch Sophist with a battery like the The Red Clock or Runic Axe, which has large opportunity costs in terms of slots or XP, resources, and play actions. It's a Rube Goldberg machine that functions only with all its many pieces in play and tends to result in a relatively slow deck*.

  • Recharge Tech: The alternate way is to pack recharge tech (Winds of Power, Recharge, Enraptured, etc.). The drawback here is that recharge tech is expensive and a little clunky to use, being balanced around their ability to affect mystic spells with higher action compression like Rite of Seeking, and still being limited to 1/round usage even if you cycle your deck (unless you use The Raven Quill). This is most optimal if you have other cards to recharge (hello, Luke Robinson), but it also does mean that you get also less milage out of the pendant.

The Queen of Nothing at All

In conclusion, the pendant's compression and flexibility strongest in solo, where it's ability can single-handed clear location instantly or solve an enemy for good. In multiplayer, the pendant mainly acts as a very strong insurance against the unexpected. It bails your team out of situations you haven't prepared for and saves you from a careless team wipe.

In other words, it's a bit of a crutch.

But the better your deckbuilding and your piloting is, and the better your team is, the less likely it would be that you would actually need bailing out. If you're aiming to win more, win harder, and win faster, and you can trust your teammates, you're often better off ditching the pendant to be a leaner and meaner seeking machine.

* relative to another deck that uses those slots and XP for better action compression, faster clue power, and or utility/team support in other ways. The difference is magnified on Hard/Expert where you can't mindlessly cycle cantrip skills.

suika · 8957

I'm in the minority in finding this an underrated card. Some points in its favor are:

  • it never runs out of charges, leaving you defenseless

  • it lets you conserve charges on other fight spells, defeating 1-health enemies or contributing to odd-health ones

  • it doesn't exhaust like Sword Cane

  • it's cheap

  • it's level 0, so it's playable as a splash card for someone like Pete

  • it offers utility on its own. Compare to the various "weaken the enemy" events that are too specific to merit deck space like Anatomical Diagrams, Expose Weakness, Makeshift Trap, or Map the Area

  • it fights with instead of . This isn't unusual for mystic spells, but it's really important for characters with low combat such as Norman when faced with a pesky Rat or hell bird. Effectively it's like a weapon that has +2 skill bonus and permits icons to be committed

  • great synergy with Sign Magick (3), granting an action to attack with a free "one-two punch" effect

  • one great use case is with Jacqueline, who is nearly guaranteed to reduce the enemy's stats. This is a huge boon for landing attacks for the remainder of her turn. Can somewhat improve success against elite enemies.

  • also Pete can use this to "soften up" an enemy before spending valuable actions with Duke

In all, it's a niche card to be sure. In many cases you'll want to replace it with Brand of Cthugha (1) or upgrade to the amazing Wither (4). But it is far from a useless "binder fodder" card.

Just FYI, Wither's debuff only lasts until the end of the current player's turn, not for the rest of the investigator phase. So using it to reduce stats in multiplayer doesn't really work, it only reduce it for the rest of Jacqueline's turn. — Soul_Turtle · 335
Everything combos with with Sign Magick (3). — MrGoldbee · 1370
I'm going to be honest - I think even Wither (4) is niche. You'd almost always rather be running a spell with charges. One of the main problems being the conditionality for the "extra damage", and the fact that it doesn't last more than the rest of the turn. — DjMiniboss · 44
@Soul_Turtle thanks for pointing that out; I made a correction to that sentence — An_Undecayed_Whately · 651

"The most damage" can be 0 damage; meaning an undamaged Manifold enemy can replicate. Also if there is only one damage to distribute you can move that damage onto newly spawned enemy as it goes with the rule "distribute the damage that is on both enemies so that the remaining health on both enemies is as equal as possible".

Njagas · 1
You can only move the damage onto the newly spawned enemy if it had equal printed health to the enemy with the most damage on it, not if it had less. — Thatwasademo · 49
(otherwise you'd be able to make the remaining health more equal by putting it on the original enemy instead of the new one) — Thatwasademo · 49
It says to distribute the damage until both have about the same remaining health, so I think you must move the damage even if the new enemy's total health is less than the original one. — Gsayer · 1