If you haven’t played Arkham and want to know what it’s like – check out the review I have put together. However, if you are struggling through the first box and want some things to focus on… here are my tips:
During the Game:
You do You; The game rewards a player for sticking to the character focus – be a fighter if you have high strength and be a clue finder if that’s what you know. Don’t think that the starting stats are enough though – even though you are doing what the game told you to, you still need to improve that stat. A fighter needs weapons, and a high dexterity character still needs to move faster.
Group Together; Sometimes being able to prop up your ally will matter. They will have spent their good cards to get what they need into play and the extra point on the key skill test might just come from your useless card that doesn’t play to your strength. You can know when you group together and when to split up – the challenges that are easy can be done alone, but the big villain or the challenging location (to search) can need two characters to take them down.
Get Clues; The key to winning the game is to unlock your mission before time runs out. You will need to use clues to advance the mission, and you will need to move from location to location to get those clues. Don’t get stuck down by a monster, and don’t waste the game waiting for cards. Get to the rooms, get the clues and keep moving!
Know When to Run; Running can feel futile – some monsters chase you and you might need to go back to that room anyway! Well, if you can survive without the room, or if you can regroup and push back then it’s time to run. Sometimes, just a couple of turns to clear your hand can help or just the extra cards of the other player will make the difference. This is most noticeable in the very first scene where getting to a room might unlock something that furthers your ability to win the game. Know when to run, even if it is just so you can come back and fight stronger!
Get Allies; Allies are powerful cards. Whether between games, at the start, or through mission objectives you should seek them out. These cards will take damage for you and give you a power up. Therefore they are expensive, but in a small deck of cards they have a big (and consistent) impact.
When to Risk it; Sometimes there is a fateful moment in a story when it’s all hanging in the balance. Will you manage to save the day, or slip into the monster’s traps. You will need to know when a skill test can be failed, and when this is the killing blow that must succeed. It’s harder to know when searching for clues, but bear in mind that a tough room will be hard to search in and sometimes it’s better to go big once than to keep trying to chip away at a very difficult challenge. Throw in the cards from your hand that help, get one from your ally and have a near certain victory if you can – better that than lose a card every turn and keep wasting actions!
Upgrades; Between missions you can get upgrades – remember to do what you do best, and to get cards with good multiple uses. Most of all though, try and balance between your characters. Choose different secondary skills, and try to give yourselves the options across the team for any scenario.