When I Find Myself In Times of Trouble

Card draw simulator

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slimjimothy · 42

Sister Mary, The Enigma

Sister Mary is an interesting investigator. On the surface, she's a perplexing guardian, almost at the Carolyn Fern level of non-guardian-ocity. There is a big difference between our new favorite nun and Carolyn Fern, however.

The holy sister can take weapons.

You can build a bada$$ Sister Mary deck, dual-fisting with her Blessed Blade and a .45, alternating between chopping enemies down and shrivelling them to a dusty husk.

This build does not do that. Instead, I decided to focus on whether I could create a Sister Mary support build - in my case, to find clues and support Silas while he runs around bopping sea monsters on the head with his beefy sailor fists.

She has 3 and 3, so she's average in what you expect a guardian to be good at. That means you can make her good-but-not great at punching, and okay at running, though you'll never get very far with buffs as a Guardian or Mystic. This is okay when teamed up with Silas, because she doesn't actually have to be good at either of these things.

With a base 4 , and plenty of opportunities to buff this up with her ability to take Mystic cards, Mary can more than handle the encounter deck. "Let me handle this!" has an honorable mention in this deck because this is a perfect way to support Silas and his meager 2 (although Ward of Radiance should help).

Which leads us to her last remaining stat...

Find Those Clues!

Sister Mary has a lousy 2 . How are we going to find clues with this? At first glance, this looks awful. In a game that is dependent on finding clues to further the Act Deck and ultimately win, neither investigator in the duo (Silas also sports a solid 2 ) could find a clue if it sprouted wings and flew right at them.

Sister Mary has a way to deal with this, and it's to lean on her high willpower and Mystic abilities. Ideally, we push her willpower up to 6 with Holy Rosary and David Renfield, who doubles as a resource generator (eventually replaced with the superior, and more-likely partner story-wise, Brother Xavier), and using her innate sixth sense to investigate her surroundings, as well as Rite of Seeking for that last action double-clue pickup (which we'll quickly upgrade to Rite of Seeking (2) for more oomph). Mulligan hard for these spells, but if that fails you should be able to find one. In a pinch, Read the Signs and Drawn to the Flame will get you through some of those tougher shrouds, and give you an extra clue to boot. In a two-player game, these cards can clear a 1 room.

6 to investigate still doesn't sound too charming (though you can get up to 8 with Rite of Seeking (2), and 9 even with Four of Cups), especially if you're playing at a harder difficulty. Sister Mary has something else going for her that should help, though.

Bless that Chaos Bag!

Sister Mary's effect on its own will give a consistent dose of Bless tokens to the Chaos Bag, but we amplify her effect with several cards. Book of Psalms, while slow to use, will have the double-benefit of healing Silas and pumping the chaos bag full of Bless tokens. Guardian Angel is good for at least 3 Blesses. Having a bag flooded with bless tokens will in theory take hard-to-beat skill tests and bring them down to normalcy, and routine tests down to auto-successes (save for the auto-fail token lurking in the darkness of the chaos bag). Though to be honest, I'm not sure how it'll play out until I start playing through Innsmouth in earnest.

Rite of Sanctification gives you A+ economy (2 free resources for each sealed Bless token? Yes please!), and can be useful at shielding from her nasty weakness, taking a good chunk of bless tokens out of the bag entirely. Combined with Tides of Fate, this can be an effective cure to the aftermath of her weakness as well (although, if you have Deny Existence in your hand, her weakness is pretty well nullified, much like Diana's).

Be on the lookout for more cards outside the core Innsmouth set, there will likely be more options here as well.

Deal with Those Monsters, Sometimes!

As I mentioned already, with this build it's expected that another investigator will be handling most of the monsters. Sometimes, though, you have no choice. Maybe you drew a monster on the opposite side of the map from your companion. Maybe a monster spawned right in your room. Perhaps poor Silas has succumbed to the terrors in the dark sea, and you're on your own for the last leg of the scenario. And of course, even Silas can't take down an eldritch god on his own (or can he...)

Sister Mary has a few paths here. Hopefully with your handy-dandy finding-things scroll, you'll be able to locate your Sword Cane, which will give you up to 6 evade for free (once per turn) if you're all set up. It even doubles as a quick bop on the head if you need to finish an enemy off. When in dire straights, or when you're trying to help out with a boss, Spectral Razor should do the trick chopping a tentacle off or two from that nasty, nasty kraken monster.

In a pinch, if Mary is bleeding out, she can take some Painkillers (also beneficial to knock out David Renfield before he flips the agenda).

Monster fighting is not this holy servant's forte, but hopefully these tools will give her a fighting chance (literally).

Honorable Mentions

Upgrade Path

I haven't thought this entirely through yet, but a few come to mind:

3 comments

Nov 25, 2020 ofinard · 1

This looks like such an amazing deck! Well thought out, and raring to go. Seems like every card has multiple synergies, which leaves this deck a web of cross-card collaboration. I bet this thing hits like a beast - and I especially think that the bless tokens are gonna make this OP, since while doom is making the game harder, the bless tokens should be making the game easier.

How about Grotesque Statue for the upgrade path? Might seem counter-intuitive, given that the bless tokens are going to be making it harder to fail, but with the Statue kickin' around with the bless tokens, that's pretty much 4 guaranteed successes. It's the Olive McBride effect without the bit where your average draw is lower.

David Renfield is a neat trick, but seems a bit finicky to manage. You mention replacing him with Bro X - the problem there is cost. How is a sister supposed to afford the big man on the measly alms she collects each week?? This deck as is seems super cost effective (Uncage letting you play the big money RoS), but dropping Bro X in there seems like he'll be impossible to afford without some cash in the bank.

Bandolier is trash tier. You can bet there'll be better cards coming down the line within the IC Cycle. I won't spoil them, but the blue fire-y card seems like it could be hot (get it!?)

You know what didn't get an honorable mention, but should have? That's right! SCRYING!!! In a world where poor ole' Silas is just trying to go around and jack up monsters, with naught but a humble nun standing between him and the eldritch abyss, it sure would be a crying shame for lil' Mary to end up with the monster and Silas to get stuck with the mind crushing treachery card asking him to beat a 3 willpower test when you know that'll never happen. If only there were some card that would let you shuffle the encounter deck around! Hmm, hold on, lemme check my tea leaves and see if they show me a useful card for that....(obviously upgraded ward of protection will help here too)

This deck looks awesome.

Nov 28, 2020 Lord Triloth · 726

You need Mind Wipe(1) to speak words of wisdom to monsters.

Dec 01, 2020 Django · 3002

Scrying 0 Is pretty action intense and she can’t play the upgrade, I don’t think it’s worth it. Alyssa Graham may be an alternative if Silas is lead... then again she’s very expensive and won’t help Mary’s will. Beating shroud 4+ with base 2 is pretty hard, i don’t think it’ll work reliable.