“Mildly concerned” Agnes - Ironman 2020

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Derived from
None. Self-made deck here.
Inspiration for
None yet

Brownloaf · 484

NOTE - As with most of my decks, this is not intended as a top tier highly efficient deck. It is however lots of fun to play and has recently brought me some great success. This particular deck has notched up Victories in both RtNotZ and RttDL. As always my analysis will no doubt be peppered with moments of naïveté and omissions, however a fact I 100% know to be true, is I’ve loved every moment of building and playing this deck!

“It’s not so much a desperate Agnes deck, more of a mildly concerned Agnes deck”

This is a deck I built to use during the 2020 Ironman event which was part of Farkham con. I was inspired to try this build after a complete mess of this deck popped during an Ultimatum of chaos game a played, as part of my “just-for-fun” YouTube series Dumb Luck, however there is no need to watch the video to understand the deck:


Surely desperate Agnes makes no sense?
On the surface yes! Agnes has to use up 5 of her “horror pings” to get into desperate position. Wasting that horror is appallingly inefficient, and takes away what makes Agnes Agnes. Or so I though until I tried it.......

The thing, yes, horror is a resource, especially for Agnes, but then resources are there to used. The trap with desperate Agnes is trying to race to 3 sanity ASAP. The fact is, desperate Agnes is not sustainable enough to justify that! The approach I’ve taken it to “not be shy” with horror. Spend the first half of the scenario using Agnes to her max. Pinging horror whenever appropriate, using her spell suite, getting set up. Then for the second half or the climax of scenario, explosive use of desperate devices for an exhilarating (and yes risky) sprint finish.

How do we get there?
Well there are a suite of cards to “aid” the gradual transition to desperate, but what is absolutely crucial is that these all serve to empower Agnes or advance the scenario in their own right, and not just there to recklessly “waste” horror.
Agnes Baker
Of course! This is where one should follow the don’t waste it, but don’t be shy approach! Many other player cards trigger her ability, but we’ll get to those shortly. I’m talking about little trick plays. My favourite in the Dunwich campaign was just engaging a whippoorwill! Then let it knock itself off. It’s not worth taking 2 actions to kill, and certainly not worth a shriveling charge. A good example of how to balance when to take the horror, is if staying at a location deals you a horror. If there no other benefit, you should definitely leave. If staying means you kill an enemy, or allow you to commit desperate search for a key test, or even just save you an action, then you take it.
St. Hubert's Key
The card essentially does 4 things for Agnes and is worth every “penny” in this deck. Firstly, yes, it gets her closer to desperate range, however if this was all it did I wouldn’t include it. Secondly and thirdly, it enhances her strong stat and it sures up one of her worst stats - brilliant. But finally, and maybe its best quality, it provides a safety net, that empowers you to really play Agnes aggressively. Just be aware that when it does leave play via its effect you end up on 4 of 8 sanity and are no longer desperate. Meh! Forbidden Knowledge.
Nothing earth shattering there, but what a delightful Agnes card!! Crucially not just there to hit an enemy, but also there to deal with the high cost curve of the deck, and I would only use it, if the horror was going to ping someone or turn on another effect. It probably shouldn't just be used to collect resources.
Arcane Research
Conventional wisdom suggests, that this is not an ideal Agnes card, due to it “wasting” one of ammo. However there are 2 important facts here. Firstly I want to trickle myself slowly towards desperate, and this is a known quantity which will trigger 100% of the time. Secondly, as this is to be used in Dunwich, I’m likely to be wanting for XP. “Well then why not 2?”, an excellent question, and it comes back to the key to the deck, balance! 2 feels too reckless and too wasteful of Agnes’ ability, plus I might be scraping around for spells to actually spend 14xp on. Shrivelling(5) is a risky prospect in this deck! Indeed my victory over RtNotZ ended with me needing to avoid the special symbol twice in a row during shrivelling attempts to win. Fortune smiled on me that day, but it was close!!!
Meat Cleaver
Wow! I mean, I don’t really need to say anything do I? Just one of the most fun interactions I’ve experienced in the game, and for the record, I do consider "fun to play" to be a good reason to include a card! However I don’t need to rely on that argument to justify this card. The fact that you can control (as long as Peter Sylvestre is in play) whether you do 1, 2, or 3 damage. It gets to desperate in a non-wasteful way, and if things are starting to get tight, it can heal your horror back up to safety. It is worth noting that this weapon does “only” get Agnes to a 4 for combat. Not too shabby but maybe not boss killing on its own.
Shrivelling/Ward of Protection
Whilst these cards do get you to desperate, they would be included anyway so I don’t really class them as part of the “suite”. However, one must be cautious with Ward and make sure it’s being used on a really valid target. You never know what’s waiting around the corner. However if time is ticking, and that horror is going to push you over the line, it is very satisfying!!

Right I’m desperate, what now?
Job 1, chuck in all the desperate skills right? Well, no, For a couple of reasons. Firstly, does Agnes really need Say Your Prayers? If the answer is “yes”, the deck is going to have serious issues. But far, far more importantly, this deck is not designed to be desperate for the whole game, so a decent balance of these skill cards are essential. They should all be mulligan targets. The aim here is to slowly, throughout the game, build up one or two of these carded in hand, ready for the explosive finale. That crucial combat check, when shrivelling’s run out. Getting that last clue in sentinel peak!
Fight or Flight
What a card!!! Of course you don’t have to be desperate to get use out of this card, but if you are, it's a plus 5!! This card really compares favourably to a very popular card Mind over Matter. I’d say it’s better. There are so many fun moments with this card. If you use it with a meat cleaver, you can take a horror, move into desperate, get an extra plus one from the cleaver and get an extra plus one from fight or flight. That is hugely satisfying!!
Meat Cleaver
See above, it if the center of the Venn as both great to get you desperate and great when you are (or nearly are) desperate.

Is that really enough?
In my experience, yes it is. The deck represents what I’ve found to be just the right balance. Even then it’s a rickety roller-coaster ride, but one where you run to rejoin the back of the queue the moment you get off, to give it just one more go!!

Well that’s the meat of the deck, what follows is a quick chat about the rest of the deck, possible upgrade and a diary of my Ironman experience. It might go on a bit, so thanks if you’ve got this far, feel free to call it a day here.

So most of the other cards are fairly standard. A set of spells to cover investigation/combat. Peter Sylvestre is really important for a bit of security, and handy with the meat cleaver if things start getting worrying! One card I’d like to mention is "Not without a fight!". I love this card, and I think it really works here with both combat spells, the meat cleaver and for that really important evade check (this partly why there’s only one Run For Your Life)

I think I tend to make fairly predictable choices. Upgrade Peter Sylvestre, Shrivelling, Sixth Sense and Ward of Protection (as a stepping stone to ward 5)
Four of Cups worked really well for me in my Dunwich play.

Versatile/Hawk-Eye Folding Camera
A less obvious choice but a formiddable one! I used this in both my campaigns. The camera is genuinely a good card in solo anyway, but it's with its extra willpower boost, intellect boost and OPTIONAL sanity boost for when things are getting a bit ropey, it's a perfect fit for this deck. The remaining 4 cards I've been making up with copies of some of the spell events, and bringing in Deny Existence which gets more and more usual as the campaign goes on. Also one more very nice side effect of Versatile is that it offers a tiny extra protection from Beyond the Veil

Accessory slots One aspect I'd like to explore with this deck is gaining Relic Hunter and start to broaden my horizons with mystic accessories, but to date, I've kept it rather familiar!!!

Return to the Dunwich Legacy - IRONMAN 2020
Here's a brief diary of my IRONMAN experience as part of Farkham con 2020. A massive thank to all who made that whole weekend an amazing experience.

Basic weakness - Overzealous - Wow thanks Arkhamdb!!!

Slow start to this scenario, despite getting well set up. Ending up having to cheat and have a drink. Knocked off the Clover Club Pit Boss with a Ward of Protection and then 3 straight fights with a Fight or Flight! Rest of the scenario was very straight forward
Dr. Francis Morgan rescued - 4xp (not including AR)

Again a nice set up, found "Jazz" Mulligan in the third load of 10 cards of the encounter deck. Cleared the dorms, and then decided to have a crack at the The Experiment. Turn1, move in, Shriv (2 damage), meat cleaver/reckless assault (3). Enemy attacks (1 from ability), Turn 2, shriv twice (4) - Dead experiment - YES!!! - 4xp

Bit of rough ride. Hunting Horror ended up with 4 resources at the end. Used 2 Reckless Assault and 1 Run For Your Life at key moments, and then Fight or Flight + Meat Cleaver to killing it the last time. DESPERATE AGNES VALIDATED!!!! - 4xp

A brave effort, made it to the final passenger car before getting knocked out by the The Conductor - 1 Physical Trauma

The deck bit back at me on this one. Nothing clicked. Got swamped really quickly. I did manage to get the hidden chamber out so sneaked a couple of xp which I really didn't deserve!! Did have some fun pinging whippoorwills though!! - 1 Mental Trauma - Everybody's dead Dave - 2xp

U and U
Well if I can't sweep this one with only two Brood of Yog-Sothoth, and a set up consisting of Four of Cups, St. Hubert's Key and Peter Sylvestre then it's never going to happen. Luckily I managed. Also had a fun moment where I used Forbidden Knowledge to get the resources i needed to pay for Spectral Razor killing an Avian Thrall in one action. - 2 xp - No brood in the wild

Started this one with a nice setup, but had no way to deal with the 2 Devotee of the Key who between them managed to rack up 4 extra doom, putting me massively on the back foot for the first agenda. Without a doubt the desperate build saved me here. Hitting a crucial evade and combat check which otherwise would have failed. The Hawk-Eye Folding Camera was also critical to this victory. Final turn, move to sentinal peak, shrivel Seth Bishop, Read the Signs to clear the location. Nice! - 4xp

What can i say, this was a completely scrappy display. The deck clunked and skidded all over the place. I think I was saved by some very lucky location placement. Popped Seth Bishop which was quite nice, but there was an ever growing collection of enemies joining the "map". Managed to very gracelessly find myself Tear Through Time. I then experienced a full two minutes of panic, when an encounter card threatened to deal me 2 damage. Luckily I eventually found a Deny Existence in my hand. And made it. - Campaign win!!

Next stop, return to the path to Carcosa........


Aug 04, 2020 Scrybe · 1

Awesome. Sounds like a fun ride.

Aug 04, 2020 SolarJ · 10

Nice one, great write up!

Aug 08, 2020 Brownloaf · 484

@Scrybe @SolarJ Thanks Guys. Yeah fun to build, exciting to play, and enjoyable to write-up!