Tank Samson | FHV Intro | Deck Guide

Card draw simulator

Odds: 0% – 0% – 0% more
Derived from
None. Self-made deck here.
Inspiration for
Tank Samson - Le Survivant - Deck Final (41 XP) 0 0 0 1.0
Tank Samson - Le Survivant - Deck Final (41 XP) 0 0 0 2.0

PBGArchive · 410

Hey everyone, Justin from PlayingBoardGames here for a Hank Samson deck guide. While I don't create in-depth guides on ArkhamDB, I do have a video related to this deck which you can find here. Still, it's only reasonable for me to also write about the deck here, so let's dive in. (Well actually, before we dive in, I want to thank Valentin1331 for organizing all this for me and the other content creators. Links will follow at the end of this post! And sorry Valentin for pronouncing your name wrong at the end of my video!)

Hank Samson

Hank's statline pushes him towards fighting. While he can use the Survivor card pool to flex, that is not what we are going to be focusing on with this decklist. Hank's ability makes him a natural tank and while his low health and sanity pools may look daunting, Hank is secretly a Dark Souls boss in disguise, which provides you a second phase for the mythos.

After being defeated in Hank's normal mode, you become one of the Resolute versions of our favourite farmhand. This changes your stats, adds an additional ability and changes your elder sign for the better. However, be aware that when you change into either version of Hank's second form, you lose the ability to be healed. With only four potential damage or horror in his secondary form, this can be a danger in Hank's hunt for his pa (or parr, if you're feeling spicy).

Hank's signature, Stouthearted, is a powerful card in Hank's arsenal. Notably, moving damage and horror doesn't count as healing, so this card is active in his Resolute form. On the flip side, "Where's Pa?" is a big threat to Hank's survivability. You'll want to always be aware of it and when you may draw it. When drawn during upkeep, "Where's Pa?" will deal your direct horror at the end of the round.

Level 0 Deck and Upgrades

If you're interested, you can find the level 0 version of the deck here.

When it comes to upgrading decks, I like to be adaptable. (No, not that Adaptable.) This means that while I have a suggested upgrade path, please feel free to ignore it and follow your own path. Additionally, instead of having a set order, I have upgrades suggested in batches.

The first five xp in this deck will go towards two copies of Jessica Hyde and 1 Charisma. Jessica will remove the two copies of "Let me handle this!" from the level 0 deck.

The weapon suite of our deck is all about embracing the scrappy nature of the Survivor card pool. Our starting eight weapons in our deck are two copies of Pitchfork, .18 Derringer, Fire Axe, and Baseball Bat. While we'll eventually be cutting the Axe, the other weapons will be upgraded or remain in our deck until the end of this deck's plan. Because of this, Hank's combat style in this deck is less about swinging with one weapon from turn 1 to 16, but to rather swap through his weapons as needed or using what is best for a given situation in a scenario.

The next batch of ten xp can be used to do the following upgrades. Choose to upgrade where you feel you are lacking most first. If you feel you need more damage, grab the weapons. If you feel you need to die less, grab the Big Man on Campus.

After that batch of ten xp, we're feeling pretty comfortable with our deck at 15 xp. The last batch of 14 xp for this deck are to round out edges and improve damage, economy, and survivability as needed.

And there we have it. The 29 xp Tank Samson deck! Before we talk about some additional upgrades beyond 29 xp, let's chat a bit about Hank and some other aspects of this deck.

When should I go Resolute?

This is an important question in Hank's gameplay loop that I believe is the key to unlocking the investigator. Right now, my theory for Hank is that you want to let the shift to Resolute happen naturally, you don't want to force it. Then, when you are defeated, choose which version is better to shift into. Speedrunning to defeat of your first form will likely lead to a quicker defeat in your second form. Look at it this way: losing on purpose seems like a good way to keep on losing.

No In the Thick of It?

I decided against In the Thick of It for this deck. While it is a powerful card, I believe that there is a bigger risk for Hank than other investigators for that initial trauma. Like Calvin Wright, any trauma that Hank may gain through the campaign will be tough against his gameplan and reduce your survivability. This may be wrong in practice, but that's my current thought on Hank and why you are seeing it in action here.

What is Quick Thinking doing there?

Quick Thinking is a strong skill card that I often run in Silas Marsh and because Hank has Silas's deckbuilding, I wanted to showcase that with this skill card. What Quick Thinking can provide is some mitigation in potential clunkiness that Hank's combat kit can sometimes contain. Take Pitchfork, if you commit a Quick Thinking to an attack against a three health enemy, you can use the extra action you gained that turn to pull the Pitchfork free.

Going Beyond 29 Xp

While I didn't include the cards in this deck both Chainsaw and Fire Extinguisher are great weapons for Hank (albeit a little more consistent than what I included here, which is honestly kind of a plus). Additionally, you can't go wrong with the likes of Lucky! and Nothing Left to Lose.

The Hunt for Parr

And that's all! I'm really excited to dive into Hank Samson for a full campaign and this is likely the deck that I'm going to be bringing to The Feast of Hemlock Vale on our YouTube channel.

Be sure to check out all of the other decks made by the other fantastic content creators, with all the links below. (If you can't tell by looking at how I formatted my guide, I didn't make this. This was made by Valentin.)

5 comments

Feb 21, 2024 Dekdarion · 7

excellent deck !!

i know you love joe pleasssse bring us a deck for my beloved diamond !

Feb 22, 2024 randyt1027 · 1

This is a great build.

After I had a two-handed solo with Hank Samson and Alessandra Zorzi, I found Hank to be a strong fighter, but he was weak against the willpower test. Any sanity placed on Hank would make it hard to survive through the rest of the game.

Thus Hank requires a good economy on card draw and resource to maintain his soak and discard loop until Peter Sylvestre and Jessica Hyde arrive.

So before he have some exp to upgrade I've had worse, and Jessica Hyde, Hank is lacking draw to have enough soak.

And I found Wrong Place, Right Time is not as good as I thought. First it is a 2-action card and will make AOO, this making this card requires all kinds of luck to play it, no enemy to deal with, your soak item is intact, and Hank still survives. In the opposite side, when it all meets it is a strong card to relieve Hank health, sanity, and card draw.

Therefore I consider Precious Memento over Wrong Place, Right Time.

And for fighting, I found out the fighting loop of Hatchet for >2 health enemy, Survival Technique bring back Pitchfork, Pitchfork attack, control back Hatchet

Feb 27, 2024 acotgreave · 783

Played this deck in a 4p attempt on Jim C's challenge scenario. It was excellent fun. Was it super-efficient? Perhaps not, but the role-playing made up for it.

  • Enemies walking around with a hatchet in their head? Amazing.
  • Someone else picking up my hatchet and pitchfork? Amazing.
  • All my teammates urging me to self-defeat myself and go into Hulk mode earlier than I wanted? Amazing.
  • Trying to decipher the "story" behind Hunting Jacket? (why does it give you resources?)? Amazing.

Thanks for the build! I had a great time. The only card I wish I'd been able to try was Devil, but I think I'll take Hank through Hemlock so will build it in there.

Feb 28, 2024 endoviking · 20

What do you think of Solemn Vow for Samson? I can't decide if it's useful or counterproductive.

Mar 09, 2024 Phobic · 2

Not a big fan of builds that can't pick up at least a few clues along the way. All in all, the deck seems a bit single minded.