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Arkham Horror: The Card Game is a living card game spinoff of Arkham Horror. Like its predecessor, AH:tCG is based on H. P. Lovecraft's Cthulhu Mythos and takes place in the 1920s, but unlike its predecessor, it is a fully cooperative game, with the players teaming up to fight the forces of the Mythos controlled by the game.

Players control investigators that try to penetrate the occult mysteries of Arkham, Massachusetts. Play consists of investigators moving across various locations, investigating the locations to discover clues and battling enemies and the forces of the Mythos. The plot of each scenario is determined by "act" and "agenda" cards: the act deck describes the objectives that the investigators are trying to accomplish, usually by collecting enough clues from the locations; and the agenda deck describes the forces of evil and progresses slowly but surely as time goes on. If all cards in the act deck are completed, the scenario ends in a win for the players, and if all cards in the agenda deck are completed, the scenario ends unfavorably (but not always a loss for the players).

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Each scenario has multiple possible endings, depending on the actions the investigators took during the scenario and the result of the race between the act and agenda decks. Scenarios are generally linked together in a campaign, with the results of each scenario affecting how later scenarios play out. This being Lovecraft, happy endings are hard to come by.

Players are represented in-game by investigators, each with their own special ability and deckbuilding requirements. The investigators are split into five roles that represent the broad archetypes of Lovecraftian protagonists:

Several expansion campaigns have been released, in addition to one-off scenarios and custom fan made content.

Campaigns:

  • Night of the Zealot: The ghouls of Arkham abandon the shadows and take to the streets - aided by their god, Umôrdhoth.
  • The Dunwich Legacy: A cult attempts to take vengeance on Dr. Armitage after the events of The Dunwich Horror.
  • The Path to Carcosa: The play The King in Yellow threatens the invasion of an alien world. Or are you just losing it?
  • The Forgotten Age: An expedition into the jungles of Mexico discovers a threat to the very fabric of time itself.
  • The Circle Undone: At a charity event hosted by the Silver Twilight Lodge, four people have utterly vanished, and the dead are strangely restless...
  • The Dream-Eaters: An intertwined double story as one group becomes lost in the Dreamlands, and another works in the waking world to return them home.
  • The Innsmouth Conspiracy: The team of investigators got stuck in Innsmouth, without memory how they got there. Will they remember in time to prevent an upcoming catastrophe?
  • To The Edge of the Earth: The second expedition to the City of the Elder Things goes disastrously, and now investigators must not only survive, but find the answer what lies behind the Mountains of Madness...

Standalone Scenarios:

  • Curse of the Rougarou: A cursed beast stalks the swamps of the New Orleans bayou.
  • Carnivale of Horrors: The celebrants of the Carnivale of Venice are the sacrifices for a dark ritual.
  • The Labyrinths of Lunacy: The investigators must work together to escape a madman's deathtrap.
  • Guardians of the Abyss: The investigators explore Cairo and the Sahara Desert to solve a sleeping sickness where no one will wake again.
  • Murder at the Excelsior Hotel: A murder occurs at the prestigious hotel, and the investigators must solve this case before the police arrive and possibly accuse them of this murder... or they become next victims.
  • The Blob That Ate Everything: A throwback to B-Movie horror with multiple groups trying to take down the giant critter.
  • Barkham Horror: The Meddling of Meowlathotep: Originally announced simply as an April Fools' Day joke in 2019, but fan reaction was so popular that it was released for real later that year. This expansion is set in an alternate universe, where evil cats have become a grave danger to the world, and the only force that stands in their way is a team of heroic investigator dogs.
  • The War of the Outer Gods: Three Ancient Ones are attacking at once; fortunately, they're just as hostile to each other as to the humans, which gives investigators a chance to stop them before it's too late.

Note: Until more cleanup is done on the page, this page includes unmarked spoilers. You have been warned!


Arkham Horror: The Card Game features examples of:

    open/close all folders 
     The game in general 
  • Achievement System: Each Return to... expansion provides optional achievements, with checkboxes to track which ones are already completed. Most are campaign-specific, but two recurring ones are achievements for finishing on Expert Difficulty and for finishing with three or more Ultimatums active.
  • Anti-Frustration Features: When building decks for any scenario in standalone mode (as opposed to campaign mode), investigators may receive bonus experience points for creating their deck. They may receive up to 9 points for free, after which they may (up to four times) receive 10 more by including an additional basic weakness card, for a total of 49 experience. This is done to offset the fact that the players skipped previous scenarios and thus didn't develop their decks or earned story rewards.
  • Arrange Mode: "Taboo rules" (provided in separate section of official FAQ) were released to nerf cards that were too powerful or overused (like Machete) and investigators (like Rex Murphy), while also buffing unpopular ones (like Winchester). These rules are distinguished from House Rules in that while they are not mandatory to use (unlike updates to FAQ), if players decide to do so, they must use those rules in their entirety, without picking ones they like and ignoring the rest.
  • Bonus Dungeon: Most standalone scenarios can be played mid-campaign, at the cost of some experience, in order to earn its rewards for the rest of campaign. Regardless of outcome, they can't be played again for duration of that campaign, so the players have only one chance.
  • Boring, but Practical: Many core game cards (particularly low-level) are extremely common in investigators' decks, despite not having any particularly flashy abilities or effects.
    • Stat-boosting slotless assets from the core game ("Physical Training", "Hyperawareness", etc) are popular picks because, well, those don't take a slot, while providing easy to access boosts.
    • Any cards which gives constant flat bonuses to stats ("Beat Cop", "Magnifying Glass", "Cat Burglar", "Holy Rosary", etc), while relatively generic, are rather useful for investigators who have low basic stats, as it allows them to waste fewer cards on skill checks just to get their icons.
    • Every class has few cards which are commonly considered as "must have" in the starter decks, and shows up time and time again:
      • Guardians have "Machete" asset, favoured for how easy it's to reliably gain damage bonus from its ability, and "Evidence!" event, which allows even those Guardians who can't do anything but fight still contribute to gathering clues.
      • Seekers have Dr. Milan Cristopher (go-to Ally to generate resources), "Magnifying Glass" asset (flat boost to Intellect when investigating, and quick to deploy due to "fast" keyword) and "Working a Hunch" event (allows to flat-out discover clues without bothering much).
      • Rogues have Leo De Luca, an Ally who gives additional action each turn, just for keeping him in play. While expansions since added many more fleshy Ally options with diverse and interesting abilities, being able to just do more things per turn often wins the competition.
      • Mystics have "Shrivelling", go-to Spell asset for the players who're playing offensively, giving them not only damage bonus, but also allowing to use their (generally great) Willpower instead of their Combat.
      • Survivors have "Leather Coat" asset, favoured for being cheap and reliable damage soak, even if not very strong.
    • Some Neutral cards are just generic, like "Supply Cache" (emergency resource boost) or "Knife" (cheap Weapon available to everyone), but they're useful for any investigator, though some would need them more than the others.
    • The core set neutral skill cards. They give you a one time +2 bonus to a skill check, but they cost no resources or actions to use, can save you at key moments, and can give you a card draw.
  • Broke Your Arm Punching Out Cthulhu: It's a Cosmic Horror Story; even if you win, you'll be loaded down with trauma and extra weaknesses. In some cases, investigators may not live to see their victory. This serves a double purpose: to show horrors investigators faced to save the Earth, and to balance ability to transfer survived investigators into new campaign with all their gear.
  • Bulletproof Vest: "Bulletproof Vest" is a Neutral asset which can protect its wielder from up to 4 points of damage before breaking up.
  • Canine Companion: Sled Dogs are available as Neutral Allies; investigators may take up to four of them, and either put them into fight for scaling bonus to Combat and damage, or instead use them as actual sled dogs and rush across the map.
  • Cap: Investigators can't include more than 2 (3 for cards with "Myriad" keyword) cards with the same title (even if their subtitles and/or levels are different) in their decks. If the card has keyword "Exceptional", they may include only 1 copy of that card (and its purchase cost is twice higher than normally).
  • Challenge Run: Most Return to... expansion provides optional "Ultimatum" rules; players can use more than one at a time (there's even recurring achievement for using three at once and win). Though there're some campaign-specific ones, most are reused throughout all campaigns:
    • Ultimatum of Finality: If investigator is defeated by damage/horror, that investigator is eliminated from campaign instantly. Only for Campaign mode.
    • Ultimatum of Survival: invoked If investigator is killed or driven insane, their player is eliminated from campaign, meaning they can't just choose new one. Only for Campaign mode.
    • Ultimatum of Failure: Adds additional "Auto-failure" chaos token in the pool.
    • Ultimatum of Broken Promise: Removes "Elder Sign" chaos token from the pool.
    • Ultimatum of Induction: invoked Investigators can't include cards of level 1 or higher in their decks, or earn/spend experience, essentially forcing them to play with their starting deck for entirety of campaign.
    • Ultimatum of Disaster: Each investigator starts with additional basic weakness.
    • Ultimatum of Dread: Players can't skip Mythos phase during first round of any scenario (meaning, they run into danger from the very start of the game).
    • Ultimatum of Agony: When assigning damage or horror, investigators must assign as much damage and horror as possible to a single card before any excess damage or horror may be assigned to a different card.
    • Ultimatum of Chaos: Players must form their starting deck from randomly chosen eligible cards (not counting signature cards and weaknesses), instead of building it themselves.
    • Ultimatum of Highlander: Investigators can't include more than one copy of each card (by title) in their decks (except for cards mandatory by deck-building rules).
  • Colour-Coded for Your Convenience: Both investigators and their player cards are colour-coded depending on their class. Guardians are blue, Seekers are orange, Rogues are green, Mystics are purple and Survivors are red. Neutral cards are grey, while multi-class cards (introduced in The Circle Undone) have distinct yellow colour.
  • Contractual Boss Immunity: Boss enemies in the game are distinguished by having the "Elite" trait. Many of the more powerful card effects (such as instantly defeating an enemy or negating an enemy's abilities) are explicitly only able to be used on "non-Elite" enemies. This often makes such cards a Useless Useful Spell.
  • Critical Failure: The auto-fail chaos token; if it's drawn, any skill check is failed automatically (as if the player's skill value was 0), no matter how much the player invested in the skill test to try to pass it. Fortunately, by default there's only one auto-fail token in the game.
  • Death Is a Slap on the Wrist: Zig-zagged.
    • For most campaign scenarios, if your character is brought down to zero health or zero sanity, you are defeated, but not dead. Instead, you take trauma, which reduces your health or sanity starting from the next session of the campaign, thus making it easier for you to be defeated next time; but if trauma reduces your health or sanity to 0, your character dies for real.
    • Some scenarios averts this, usually (but not always) those later in a campaign, with defeated investigators specifically being instantly killed / driven insane as part of a scenario's resolution. Since it only gets revealed after the end of scenario, when you play through a scenario for the first time, you're never sure.
    • If an investigator dies or goes insane, they are eliminated from the campaign entirely... but that just requires you as a player to pick a different character from pool of available investigators and build a new deck for them, starting from scratch for the next scenario.
  • Deer in the Headlights: "Frozen in Fear" is a recurring Treachery card; under its effects, investigators freeze in fear, making it harder to concentrate enough on their tasks, thus spending more actions on even basic things (and investigators have only three per turn by default), or pass Willpower check to shake it out completely. Rogues are especially vulnerable to it, having only 1-2 basic Willpower at average.
  • Draconic Abomination: Byakhees somewhat resemble highly deformed dragon/insect being. They are mainly associated with Hastur.
  • Drop the Hammer:
    • "Cyclopean Hammer", a Guardian/Mystic asset, is a hammer so massive, it can actually kick attacked enemy out of your location.
    • "Sledgehammer" (a Guardian/Survivor asset) is too huge for investigator, so it requires using extra actions to strike with it reliably, but if it actually lands a hit, it causes massive damage.
  • The End of the World as We Know It: Full spectrum of world-ending scenarios, from Merged Reality to Time Crash. The ultimate goal of any campaign is to prevent it.
  • Eldritch Abomination: Minimum one otherworldly monster per campaign, ranging from monstrous minions to Great Old Ones and Outer Gods.
  • Episodic Game: Prior to release of the Edge of the Earth expansion, the game used the system of so-called "Mythos Cycles", consisting of "Deluxe" expansion pack (contains new investigators, usually one per class, excluding Neutral, some new player cards for each class, and first two scenarios of a new campaign), and set of six Mythos packs (contains the rest of campaign, and the rest of new cards, including high-level ones). New release model instead has two packs, one containing all investigators and player cards, and another containing entire campaign, with old expansions being gradually re-released in the new format.
  • Everyone Has a Special Move: Each investigator has at least one unique ability and signature card which only they may use, which makes playing as them different from any other investigator from the same class.
  • Evil Is Deathly Cold: "Chilling Cold" is a recurring Treachery set, which involves either thick fog, or frost so strong it can actually greatly damage investigators' Health. This certainly can't be natural, and likely related to Eldritch Abomination in charge.
  • Expansion Pack:
    • Each new expansion comes in two boxes, one containing new investigators and player cards, an one containing a new campaign. Prior to release of the Edge of the Earth expansion in 2021, the different system was used, when one big "deluxe" box (containing investigators, first pack of cards and first two scenarios) gets followed by seven "Mythos packs" (containing next scenario and more cards).
    • Each campaign eventually receives a "Return to..." expansion, which alters rules, replaces some scenario cards and adds new ones for additional replay value and often additional challenge, making it worth to, well, return to them and play again. Each one also contains new player cards.
  • Extra Turn: "Ace of Rods" Neutral asset allows to perform an extra action, with a bonus to all stats... but only once per scenario, as the card then leaves play.
  • Final Boss, New Dimension: Final scenarios of most campaigns happens not on Earth, but in some Eldritch Location appropriate for the current Big Bad.
  • Fish People: Deep Ones appears in couple of scenarios. They are mainly associated with Cthulhu.
  • The Gambler: "Hit me!" Rogue/Survivor event, in a typical Rogue style, is gambling-themed; it allows to take a risk of revealing a second token and reverse its modifier (if it's negative) — but if drawn token is "Skull", it fails your test immediately.
  • The Goomba: While enemies greatly varies in their power, some recurring enemies are not only weak, but also lacks any abilities, sometimes even keywords.
    • Rats shows up mostly for adding atmosphere, and, in the case of Night of the Zealot campaign, teach the players how "Hunter" mechanic works. They don't pose a threat on their own... unless biffed up by something else, like it occurs in a couple of scenarios.
    • Ghouls, when they show up, don't have any abilities on their own; their stats have a lot to desire for either. The only enemy weaker than them is a Rat Swarm.
  • Harmful Healing: "Painkillers" Neutral asset heals some damage at the cost of suffering horror. Its twin sister, "Smoking Pipe", does the same in reverse, healing horror and causing damage.
  • Healing Factor: Whenever agents of Shub-Niggurath are presented, so would be Dark Young — enormous mass of formless flesh, ready to kill and devour anyone on their path; its main gimmick is ability to heal two damage points per round, which can nullify all efforts to put it down unless investigators can out-damage its regeneration. Fortunately, if it actually dies, it wouldn't respawn.
  • Hearing Voices: "Dissonant Voices" is a recurring treachery card; under its effects, investigators can't play Assets or Events, due to being too distracted. Fortunately, it only lasts one round.
  • Heroic RRoD: The "trauma" mechanic, which symbolises the dangers investigators faces scarring them for life. Traumas are usually earned as consequence of running out of Stamina and/or Sanity, or as effects of scenario resolutions, and result in investigators starting the next one already having some damage/horror, making it progressively easier to gain more of them. If it reduces them to zero starting Stamina/Sanity, that investigator perishes, forcing the player to pick a new one.
  • It's a Wonderful Failure: Bad endings for any campaign always lovingly describe just how dire consequences of failing your task were. All the more reasons to try again and do better this time.
  • It Only Works Once: "The Council's Coffer", Neutral-class asset, allows every investigator to play one card for free (from either their deck or discard pile), but after one successful use it gets removed from the game for duration of campaign.
  • Kaizo Trap: Goat Spawns (recurring enemies associated with Shub-Niggurath) have not exactly impressive stats, but they have one nasty ability: when they are defeated, they deal 1 Horror to each investigator in their location. If you were unprepared, this may cause defeat by horror to one or more investigators.
  • Know When to Fold 'Em: There are often Resign actions included in the scenario cards, to give you an escape option. Losing often makes your next scenario worse, but if you were going to lose anyway, you can avoid a total loss or trauma penalties by resigning. Some scenarios outright kills (or drives insane) all defeated investigators, and death means you have fewer investigators to finish campaign, not mentioning investments which were wasted on perished character(s), so outside of really daring situations, such a "sacrifice" is rarely worth it. Some scenarios simply lack "win" conditions; you must achieve as much as possible and retreat while you can, and being too greedy can nullify all your achievements or cost you so much it becomes a Pyrrhic Victory.
  • Kukris Are Kool: "Kukri" is available as Neutral-class asset. It acts as a middle ground between Knife and Machete, and acts as a weak, but cheap and reliable melee weapon available to anyone.
  • Limited Loadout:
    • Every investigator can include only so many cards in their decks (30 cards for most of them; signature cards, weaknesses and cards earned via story reasons don't count towards limit).
    • By default, any investigator can have up to 8 cards in their hand (5 cards for Patrice Hathaway); they may draw more, but anything excessive must be discarded at the end of the round. This includes weaknesses and any "hidden" cards.
    • Every investigator has two "hand" slots, two "arcane" slots, and one each of the "body", "accessory", and "ally" slots. Each slot may be occupied by only one asset at a time, and most assets takes up at least one of them. Players have limited opportunities to expand amount of slots available, usually at the cost of sacrificing something else, and often only allowing assets with certain traits into those bonus slots.
  • Luck Manipulation Mechanic:
    • "Snipe" Guardian/Rogue event allows to treat all negative symbol tokens, including auto-failure, as "0".
    • "Heavy Furs" Neutral asset allows to cancel a chaos token (other than auto-failure) and reveal another, at the cost of taking some damage (breaking after just two uses).
  • Maximum HP Reduction: "Dreams of R'lyeh" treachery from core box (of "Agents of Cthulhu" set) decreases Willpower and maximum Sanity by 1 until it gets dealt with by passing a Willpower check.
  • Multiplayer-Only Item:
    • Many cards are dedicated to teamwork and are near or completely useless in solo plays.
    • Certain basic weaknesses are explicitly forbidden from being used during solo playthroughs, because they affect their owner's teammates.
  • Multiple Endings:
  • Necessary Drawback:
    • Each investigator's strong sides are counterbalanced by their own unique "weakness" cards. These are required to be played or dealt with as soon as they are drawn, and usually go directly against the investigator's preferred playstyle, but some give the investigators a new task to deal with, with harsh penalties for failing it or ending the scenario with it incomplete, and some may even screw entire team if left unchecked.
    • Each investigator starts with at least one "basic" weakness (chosen at random at their deck's creation). These are generally not as harsh as signature weaknesses, but still may screw them over if drawn at the wrong time.
  • New Game Plus: After campaign completion, surviving investigators can be re-used in another one with all the cards they acquired before, including story assets. This is balanced by also having to carry all trauma and weaknesses over as well. Also, although the designers have stated that this is allowed, they have also stated that scenarios are not balanced for starting a new campaign using characters from a previous campaign.
  • No Saving Throw: Infamous "Ancient Evils" treachery encounter has exactly one effect: it increases current Doom by one, as well as moving the agenda forward if the limit is reached. This reduces your already limited time without any skill check to prevent it so unless the investigator has an encounter negation card like Ward of Protection on-hand there's nothing they can do. Whenever altered versions of this treachery appears, be it Return to... pack or something scenario-specific, they universally provide options to avoid triggering its effect, though sometimes alternative may be no less painful.
  • No-Sell:
    • "Protective Gear" Guardian/Survivor asset allows to ignore any "Hazard" treachery, albeit at the cost of taking damage and horror, which breaks it after three uses at most.
    • "Talisman of Protection" Mystic/Survivor asset allows to cancel up to 2 damage and/or horror which would otherwise defeat the investigator who uses it.
  • Once a Season:
  • One-Steve Limit: Only one copy of any unique card (by title) may be in play at a time. This includes investigators (meaning each player must use a different investigator), most Allies and most in-story characters and entities. However, players are not prevented from including multiple copies of the same unique card in their decks, or commit them to skill tests.
  • "Open!" Says Me: "Locked Door" is recurring treachery (primary for indoors locations), which prevents investigators from, well, investigating the locked location. Locked door can be unlocked (Agility check)... or just smashed through by force (Combat check).
  • Our Ghouls Are Creepier: Ghouls are ugly darkness-dwelling humanoids (with their faces being vaguely dog-like) with taste for human flesh.
    • Ghouls are recurring low-level enemies starting from the core game. Some attack directly, others try to grab you from holes in the floor.
    • William Yorick (The Path to Carcosa) has group of ghouls as his signature weakness, meaning they would haunt him regularly.
  • Point Build System: How experience works in this game. Players earn experience points by defeating monsters and collecting clues during scenarios, and can spend them to buy new cards for their decks between scenarios.
  • Power Nullifier:
    • Stubborn Detective, while close to an investigator, blanks all text on their card (excluding traits), essentially turning off their abilities until he's dealt with.
    • Edge of the Earth expansion introduced several weaknesses which exists to disable certain types of action if you trigger at least one of them, till the end of the round. However, they can be "healed", as if they're a single point of damage (physical ones) or horror (mental ones), which discards them.
  • Protective Charm: "Elder Sign" is a Neutral asset which can protect its wielder from up to 4 points of horror before breaking up.
  • Punch-Packing Pistol: Aside from generally lower bonus to Combat, actual bonus damage on pistols is usually the same as on other weapons.
  • Random Event: The encounter deck will deal you random enemies, obstacles, and horrors every round. Notably, every scenario builds this deck differently, so the darkness will always fit your setting.
  • Religion of Evil: Almost all plots involve cult worshipping current antagonistic Eldritch Abomination, with "Dark Cult" being a recurring encounter set starting from the core game, appearing at least once per campaign. Most campaigns also feature they own, setting-appropriate versions, often using "Dark Cult" as template.
  • Revolvers Are Just Better: Revolvers are amongst most common Weapon cards, mainly belonging to Guardian or Rogue classes, as well as showing up as signature Weapons for several investigators. They tend to be cheap and reliable, making them popular choices.
  • Starfish Aliens: Being a Lovecraftian-themed game, Arkham TCG has its share of weird-looking monsters from other worlds. Some of them are recurring across campaigns and scenarios:
  • Starter Equipment:
    • Generally, at the start of the game, investigators can only afford level 0 cards, as those costs no experience to purchase (except when replacing existing card, which costs 1 exp). Such cards are balanced around the fact that it's what the player would use at the very beginning of campaign, and generally don't offer much beyond simply letting you not die and finish your task (albeit exceptions do exist). Many such cards gains upgrades later on.
    • Every investigator has recommended pre-made deck, which allows new players, who don't know how to play particular investigator, jump into the game right away. Instructions for these decks explains why specific cards were chosen, to hint what to upgrade first.
  • Timed Mission: Almost all scenarios are timed in one way or another. Most scenarios ends when the final agenda's doom threshold is reached, but sometimes there may be other ways. While losing single scenario usually would not result in immediate campaign failure (though final ones always have this effect), consequences often include traumas, new weaknesses, worsening conditions in subsequent scenarios, and death/insanity for most or all investigators involved.
  • Universal Ammunition: Every Weapon with limited ammunition would use the same kind of tokens as "ammo" — be it a revolver, a shotgun, a bow or some alien ray-gun. Though ammo-recharging cards generally only affects "Firearm" assets, so bows or grenades are typically left out.
  • Vertical Kidnapping: Several campaigns involve Night Gaunts who can (and will) abduct investigators and take them to different locations. They always appear exactly once.
  • You Dirty Rat!: Rat swarms are recurring (but usually pathetically weak) enemies, who appears in nearly every campaign (The Forgotten Age being the first exception) exactly once. They are so unnaturally aggressive, they even have the "Hunter" keyword, meaning they would actively pursue investigators.

Campaign-specific Tropes (Warning: unmarked spoilers)

     Night of the Zealot tropes 
  • Antagonist Title: The third scenario's title, "The Devourer Below", refers to Umôrdhoth, an evil deity the local cultists and ghouls worship.
  • Ascended Extra: Umôrdhoth originally appeared in Eldritch Horror as elite, but still one-shot Eldritch Abomination. This time, the cult of its followers is the main focus of campaign.
  • Ax-Crazy: Wolf-Man Drew is a highly aggressive cannibal. Notably, he's the only member of the Cult of Umôrdhoth who can't be captured peacefully.
  • Batter Up!: One of the achievements in the Return to the Night of the Zealot campaign is called Pinch Hitter; to achieve it, a player must defeat three Ghoul enemies with a Baseball Bat without it breaking.
  • Draconic Abomination: Umôrdhoth would randomly receive support from either Yog-Sothoth, Hastur, Cthulhu or Shub-Niggurath. If Hastur is chosen, he would send byakhees, who vaguely resemble some weird hybrid of dragon and insect.
  • Eldritch Abomination:
    • Umôrdhoth would randomly receive support from either Yog-Sothoth, Hastur, Cthulhu or Shub-Niggurath. If Shub-Niggurath is chosen, she would send Dark Young — enormous mass of formless flesh with strong Healing Factor.
    • Umôrdhoth resembles a formless turquoise hurricane of tentacles.
  • Fish People: Umôrdhoth would randomly receive support from either Yog-Sothoth, Hastur, Cthulhu or Shub-Niggurath. If Cthulhu is chosen, he would send Deep Ones, which resemble some ugly hybrid between human and fish.
  • Forced into Evil: Some of the cultists of Umôrdhoth are not exactly willing in their service. Ruth Turner, a mortician, had her family targeted, forcing her to provide corpses for the ghouls. Others let their occult studies get too deep until the cult would not let them leave.
  • The Goomba: None of the enemies showing up in the first scenario have any special abilities (at most having keywords like "Hunter"), though scenario-specific ghouls at least have reasonably large stats. Even the main boss of this scenario, the Ghoul Priest, only differs by being just stronger starts-wise and having "Elite" trait to protect him from some cards effects. In a way, in applies to locations, too, as none of locations has nasty effects which would be common in later expansions, and some even lacks effects whatsoever.
  • Humanoid Abomination: Umôrdhoth would randomly receive support from either Yog-Sothoth, Hastur, Cthulhu or Shub-Niggurath. If Shub-Niggurath is chosen, she would send Goat Spawns, which resemble some ugly hybrid between human and goat.
  • Implacable Man: One the Masked Horror spawns, it keeps pursuing whatever investigator currently having the most number of clues; he's very tough and hard to kill, and while he's engaged with you, you can't neither discover nor spend clues, which may stall your progress while he's alive.
  • I'm a Humanitarian:
    • Rumours says that Wolf-Man Drew was locked up in Arkham Asylum for cannibalism. It's not hard to believe, given his bestial look and high aggressiveness.
    • Your main enemies are ghouls who feed on the dead, their hunger driving them to the surface now their cache of corpses is destroyed.
  • Let the Past Burn: If you "win" the first scenario, you are presented this as one option for dealing with your ghoul-infested and corrupted home. It's not actually very helpful.
  • Multiple Endings: Campaign has three endings (outside of investigators losing), depending on wether Umôrdhoth was successfully summoned or not, and if yes, wether it was defeated by investigators, or sated by feeding Lita to it.
  • Noob Cave: Shortest and easiest of campaigns, mainly used to introduce new players to the game (particularly the first scenario, The Gathering); campaign guide also provides some tips for them. This does not applies to Return to the Night of the Zealot, however, which increases difficulty of the game.
  • Not-So-Well-Intentioned Extremist: Lita Chantler. She betrayed the cult and destroyed the ghoul's larder, which appears noble. Every action she takes in the campaign, however, is about trying to dodge her personal consequences no matter what - sealing your home with you in it to stop the ghoul pack, roping you into unmasking the cult, and stopping the ritual, all of which is targeting her specifically. If you utterly fail, she flees Arkham and the risen Umôrdhoth will just begin hunting random locals, "searching" for her, and never end its hunger.
  • Our Ghouls Are Creepier: Ghouls are main focus of first scenario, although they also returns in last one. They are servants of Umôrdhoth.
  • One-Hit Kill: "Umôrdhoth Hunger" treachery (from Return to the Night of the Zealot) forces all investigators to discard a random card from hand... and kills whomever can't do that.
  • Permanently Missable Content: Lita Chanter can only be recruited right after the first scenario; if investigators fails to make it out alive, she would join the next team which would follow their steps, otherwise, she would only agree to tag along if investigators agree to burn the house down. Not taking her with the team, in turn, cuts off one of the endings (albeit the worst one, outside of outright failure).
  • Pushed at the Monster: In the final scenario, The Devourer Below, Lita Chantler can be thrown at Umôrdhoth in order to appease its hunger, should it rise. This awards players with instant victory, but with great penalties.
  • Rat Stomp: Rats are used to introduce new players to "Hunter" mechanic (the enemies which keeps pursuing players each turn), which would be widely used in other campaigns, without actually putting them at any risk. The rats' stats (abysmal combat rating and heatlh, good evade rating) are forcing the players to learn that not all enemies may be easily run from.
  • Skippable Boss: Players aren't forced to defeat the Ghoul Priest or any of the cultists, but failing to do so will see them return in the already difficult final mission. Resigning during the final mission will result in a bad ending where player are killed by a rampaging Umôrdhoth but they can still avoid a fight by preventing its summoning or handing over the target of its ire.
  • Stalker Without A Crush: The first agenda card in Midnight Masks mentions that even as you hunt the cult through Arkham, you feel hunted in return. Proven true once that card flips, and reveals the Masked Hunter, who immediately pounces on whoever has the most progress in revealing more members.
  • Trapped-with-Monster Plot: The Gathering scenario. You are trapped with ghouls inside your house, and must find a way to escape before they defeat you with shear numbers.
  • Starfish Aliens: Umôrdhoth would randomly receive support from either Yog-Sothoth, Hastur, Cthulhu or Shub-Niggurath. If Yog-Sothoth is chosen, he would send Yithians, who are so outlandish, they resemble no any Earth-born creature.
  • Unreliable Narrator: The investigators discover that Lita Chantler herself is the reason the Umôrdhoth cult is active, having destroyed the ghouls' food source and antagonised their god, something she neglected to mention to the players.
  • Vampiric Draining: Wolf-Man Drew heals 1 damage each time he attacks. Presumably, from consuming flesh.
  • Video Game Cruelty Punishment: While you can sacrifice Lita to Umôrdhoth in order to quickly win the last scenario, whole party would be punished by acquiring new weaknesses; this is also the only ending in which investigators wouldn't be awarded with bonus experience (if not counting outright failure), with other two awarding 5 or 10 points, respectively.
  • Whatever Happened to the Mouse?: The opening narration is from a person who describes themselves as an old soothsayer. After setting the scene they never appear again, including in the closing narration.
  • You Dirty Rat!: Investigators' house in The Gathering is heavily infested by rodents; they are even aggressive enough to attack investigators themselves. Though ultimately rats are not the main problem here...

     The Dunwich Legacy tropes 
  • Advancing Boss of Doom: In Lost in Time and Space, Yog-Sothoth, once awakened, pursues investigators until they escape or die. While it is possible (but is not advised, except probably for the challenge) to defeat him, what you are really supposed to do is run.
  • Advancing Wall of Doom: In The Essex County Express the train is gradually consumed by transdimensional portal; your task is to reach train engine and restart the train before it consumes you as well.
  • Armor-Piercing Attack: "Light of Aforgomon" treachery makes all damage and horror direct, meaning that it's not possible to soak it with assets.
  • Broke Your Arm Punching Out Cthulhu: Yes, you can beat Yog-Sothoth. No, you wouldn't be alive to celebrate it.
  • Big Bad: Seth Bishop is the villain behind all events of campaign. He either went nuts from the strain of what he witnessed, or was a potential novice of Old Whateley all along. His research corrupted him. Now he's running the cult, kidnapping the original story's characters to make sure they can't stop this new ritual. The new Brood are his successful attempts to replicate the Dunwich Horror, using a journal recovered from the Whateley farm. But everything of this was done in service to Yog-Sothoth, and the last part of his plan involves summon him on Earth — which still remains a risk even after Seth himself gets disposed of.
  • Boss in Mook Clothing: Enemies which awards victory points are generally always tougher than common enemies, but Crazed Shoggoth stands out due to combining high health, damage/horror and ability to outright kill any investigator it defeats.
  • Boss-Only Level: The Miskatonic Museum has only one enemy — the Hunting Horror, which keeps pursuing investigators and never stays "dead" for long. In absence of other enemies, entirety of the encounter deck is filled with treacheries, many of which are related to supporting Hunting Horror in killing you.
  • Choose a Handicap: Early in the campaign, the players have to choose which scenario — Extracurricular Activities or The House Always Wins — they would do first; whatever scenario they would do second, would be harder, due to the investigators arriving just in time for the monsters to go on rampage; and whatever character they're here for in the fist place would be already abducted.
  • Disc-One Final Boss: While Seth Bishop is the leader of new cult and main force behind the whole story, even when he's dealt with, one last task remains — sealing away the portal he just opened, before Yog-Sothoth reaches our world through it.
  • Eldritch Location: For Lost in Time and Space, that's exactly what your party members are, lost in an extradimensional space beyond the rift, with locations and paths constantly in flux, and echoes of past failures coming back to haunt you.
  • Go Mad from the Revelation: Implied this happens to anyone who witnessed the Horror and stays in Dunwich. One version of the epilogue shows Curtis Whateley obsessing over the old Whateley farm, hoping to find something inside that would let him rationalise what he'd seen, and strongly suggesting the same thing happened to Seth Bishop.
  • The Goomba: Thralls have low stats, and no special abilities (beyond "Retaliate" keyword, which doesn't do much due to aforementioned low stats). Essentially, they're this campaign's replacement for ghouls.
  • Greater-Scope Villain: While Seth Bishop is the main force behind story's events, all of this was done in service to Yog-Sothoth. Even when Seth himself is dealt with in penultimate scenario, one last task remains — to go on the other side of portal he opened, and seal the rift. This is extremely dangerous, because, besides various anomalies and eldritch monsters, you may attract the attention of Yog-Sothoth himself — who will not let you escape unpunished.
  • Here We Go Again!:
    • In Blood on the Altar, you find someone has tried to recreate the Dunwich Horror. By the next scenario, you know they succeeded, and there's more than one of them out there.
    • Either version of the epilogue. In one, Curtis Whateley starts obsessing over the family legacy. In another, some new investigators from the university checking out an abandoned Dunwich find evidence the cult is still around.
  • Karma Meter: If you make a questionable decision, the campaign will mark it by adding extra tokens to the pool, raising the risks of failing any given task. Such choices include keeping Tome of Eldritch Lore instead of destroying it, letting innocents die when you could prevent it, and cheating at cards in a speakeasy.
  • Locomotive Level: Naturally enough on The Essex County Express, the train you're travelling on comes under attack by a tear in the sky trying to swallow the whole thing. While you certainly can be taken out, the evil's intent is to recover anyone or anything you rescued earlier in the campaign. In order to survive, the investigators must rush through the train as it's being torn apart car by car, and reach the locomotive in order to restart the train before it's too late.
  • Lord British Postulate: In Lost in Time and Space, it is possible, albeit very hard, to defeat Yog-Sothoth, despite this not being your objective. It would award immediate victory, but at the cost of your life and the lives of those who've followed you.
  • Multiple Endings:
    • The last scenario, Lost in Time and Space, has different outcomes depending on wether the investigators have managed to escape with their lives after preventing Yog-Sothoth from merging with our reality, or perished. There's also a separate ending for fighting Yog-Sothoth, which also results in the investigators dying after their victory.
    • There are two versions of the epilogue, depending on wether the citizens of Dunwich were warned, or told to evacuate. Both are implying that someone else would restart the cult soon enough.
  • Nice Job Breaking It, Hero: You spend much of Blood on the Altar trying to find your kidnapped key allies before they are sacrificed. Turns out the sacrifices were meant to appease the Brood or its master, and by rescuing all or most of the prisoners, you now have up to five [[Expy expies]] of the Dunwich Horror pissed off and rampaging nearby.
  • No-Sell: It's not possible to damage Broods of Yog-Sothoth by anything other than Esoteric Formula. However, them lacking "Elite" trait makes them vulnerable to some other means of dealing with them...
  • Permanently Missable Content:
    • Earning Naomi's support requires to save Peter Clover from casino. Failing to save Peter (or doing The House Always Wins as the first scenario, resulting in him never show up) would result in Peter going missing, and O'Bannion gang going after investigators, permanently cutting the option for alliance.
    • Subverted with Armitage and his colleagues; if they would be abducted, the investigators would still get a chance to save them at later point. At least one of them would be abducted no matter what.
    • If the Necronomicon wouldn't be retrieved from the museum, or its bearer would be defeated at any point before the confrontation with Seth Bishop, the book would be stolen by cultists.
    • Any unique Allies sacrificed to Yog-Sothoth are gone until the end of campaign. You can't get them back. This includes not just people abducted by cultists in the previous scenario and two victims already put there, but also whatever Allies abducted during scenario itself, including normal player cards and even investigators' signatures.
  • Power Nullifier: "Unhallowed Country" treachery prevents the investigators from playing Allies, and disables all abilities on those who're already in game.
  • Psychopomp: The soul-catching birds, whippoorwills, from the story return, both as encounter cards trying to trip you up, and lining the rooftops of Dunwich, eager to feast on the doomed village.
  • Puzzle Boss: In Undimensioned and Unseen, the many Brood of Yog-Sothoth are all immune to all damage except for a specific spell you recover early in the scenario. Even that spell won't land much, unless you find a way to trap the creatures, slow them down, or otherwise cut through their invisibility.
  • Rocks Fall, Everyone Dies: In Where Doom Awaits, if Seth successfully summons Yog-Sothoth it's over — not just for you, but for the whole humanity.
  • Run or Die: In Lost in Time and Space, Yog-Sothoth is ever-present, but you're not supposed to fight it; you must complete your task and reach the portal to escape, all while being pursued by the angry Outer God.
  • Sadistic Choice:
    • The campaign opens with one right away. The faculty you choose to look for first will be the only one you can potentially save. By the time you get to the second scenario, the kidnappers have come and gone. You can still do some good, but if you take too long, the cult will have the time to nab Armitage as well.
    • Extracurricular Activities ends on another. Save the students from The Experiment, or stick to your original mission — find Professor Rice. No third option available.
  • Schmuck Bait: Lost In Time and Space offers you possibility to fight Yog-Sothoth himself and even offer a unique ending if you win. While technically it is possible, albeit hard, to win this battle, what no one tells you is that no one survives it, not even those who managed to run away; and all of this would be in vain anyway, because Yog-Sothoth runs away in the last moment.
  • Slipping a Mickey: During "The House Always Wins" scenario, it's possible to take some drinks. One of the treacheries, "Something in the Drinks", specifically targets such investigators, by taking away one of their actions for the next turn — in scenario with already highly limited time.
  • Starfish Aliens: Yithians are recurring enemies in this campaign, particularly during Lost in Time and Space.
  • Starts Stealthily, Ends Loudly: The House Always Wins starts with infiltration, with thugs not attacking unless provoked. Then casino gets attacked by monsters sent by Seth Bishop, and everything goes to hell.
  • Sudden Sequel Death Syndrome: Depending on the players' performance, some or all heroes of The Dunwich Horror may be sacrificed to Yog-Sothoth.
  • That's No Moon: In Lost in Time and Space, when Yog-Sothoth actually appears, investigators at first mistook him for the actual moon. Then he started becoming larger, and larger...
  • Theme Naming: All Act cards in "The House Always Wins" scenario have card-themed names — fittingly, as scenario is set in a casino.
  • Time-Limit Boss: In Extracurricular Activity, The Experiment, once unleashed, moves each time the last agenda reaches its doom threshold. Its destination? Dormitories. In order to stop it, investigators must either save the students, or find a way to defeat The Experiment before it reaches the dormitories, otherwise it ends in a bloodbath. Investigators may also win by finding Warren Rice (which is why they're here in the first place), but this would mean dooming the students to die.
  • Video Game Cruelty Punishment: If investigators just slaughter Silas Bishop, instead of trying (unsuccessfully) to cure him, they would face more enemies later in game, due to remains of his body dissolving into smaller monsters.
  • Weaksauce Weakness: The Brood of Yog-Sothoth in Undimensioned and Unseen are not Elite, and are vulnerable to card effects which similarly threatening enemies are immune to—being blanked, insta-killed, and so on. This can be used to bypass their Puzzle Boss nature. Return to the Dunwich Legacy, however, took this into account, by introducing "Imperceptible Creature" treachery, which takes away this vulnerability from whatever monster it's attached to.
  • You Are Already Dead: "Beyond the Veil" treachery, when it gets revealed, goes into investigator's threat area, and stays here until the right moment. It does nothing... until that investigator runs out of cards in their deck, after which it deals them whopping ''ten points of damage, which is enough to put down even most tough Guardians without assets to soak up damage. And then there're other treacheries and effects which force you to discard cards from your deck. If you are low on cards and have no means to cancel or discard that treachery, your only chance of survival is to live until the end of scenario or resign.
  • You Can't Thwart Stage One: In Where Doom Awaits, Seth will always be able to open the rift to summon Yog-Sothoth. Your choices before that point will determine how much time you have until he actually summons his master, and whether Seth will still be around to stop you.
  • You Dirty Rat!: Club Clever is heavily infested with rats, who are unusually aggressive.

     The Path to Carcosa tropes 
  • Ax-Crazy: While no cultists of any Eldritch Abomination out there are exactly sane, Hastur's servants are often outright lunatics and maniacs, down to and including knife-wielding psychos and pyromaniacs.
  • Bait-and-Switch: If more Convictions were accumulated than Doubts, investigators hears ominous "I've looking all over for you"... which turns out to be just the ship captain who was hired by investigators themselves to reach the abbey.
  • Bedlam House: The Unspeakable Oath is set in Arkham Asylum. While infiltrating it is relatively easy, escape is much harder. Any investigators who fails to escape would become irrevocably insane.
  • Big Bad: Hastur. All of this, from ill-fated play to a dark ritual in Paris is part of his plan to escape from his prison, by merging Carcosa and our world.
  • Boss in Mook Clothing: Asylum Gorger has boss-grade damage and horror values, and has high health, combat and evade stats; and it doesn't give victory points, meaning that it can come back if killed. Fortunately, it has fixed spawning point, and is prohibited from attacking on the same turn it moved, or making attacks of opportunity, allowing investigators to just outrun it.
  • Choose a Handicap: The chaos pool alters each scenario depending on the outcome of the previous one, changing the dangers the players would deal with.
  • Creepy Cockroach: Swarms of cockroaches are recurring enemies in Hastur's areas of influence.
  • Draconic Abomination: Byakhees are widespread in this campaign, particularly during A Phantom of Truth scenario.
  • Eldritch Location: Carcosa, city of King in Yellow, doesn't abide normal rules of our world, and makes devastating effect on sanity of anyone witnessing it.
  • The End... Or Is It?: If more Doubts were accumulated than Convictions, Hastur tricks investigators into believing that All Just a Dream... and then they sees the Stranger on they way back.
  • Gimmick Level:
    • The Pallid Mask, instead of normal map, has catacombs which generates in unpredictable way on the go.
    • The Black Star Rise starts with no Act deck — and two Agenda decks. But one of the two decks are genuine, and other hides the way players may achieve their goal. But which is which wouldn't become apparent until only last agenda card remains.
    • Dim Carcosa wouldn't cause instant defeat on losing all Sanity (which is good, considering extreme amount of horror-based effects it has), allowing to accumulate horror well past the point investigator would be already dead. However, several scenario-specific threats becomes more lethal if investigator stockpile horror, including some outright lethal.
  • Glamour Failure: In The Last King, if investigators take too long or bother them too much, certain party-goers would mutate into monsters and become hostile.
  • Golden Ending: Played With regarding the "neutral" ending. By refusing to play by Hastur's rules and accumulating less than 5 Doubts and Convictions in total, the investigators unlocks a special, otherwise inaccessible version of the final boss and the third ending associated with it. In it, rather than Hastur making the last laugh at investigators, they defiantly tosses the Pallid Mask into the ocean. But it's also the only ending where investigators receives both 2 physical traumas and 2 mental ones, instead of just one or another.
  • Go Among Mad People: Your main mission during The Unspeakable Oath scenario is to infiltrate Arkham Asylum by pretending to be new patients, in order to find one of the last persons who knows what's going on.
  • Healing Factor: In his monster form, Jordan Perry quickly regenerates health each turn (and he is already toughest of the party goers), making it significantly harder to put him down.
  • Here We Go Again!: Campaign epilogue, which can only be accessed if at least one investigator was still possessed by the end of Dim Carcosa, implies that those investigators would attempt to perform "King in Yellow" again.
  • Karma Meter: Game keeps track of "doubts and "conviction", essentially you either outright rejecting anything supernatural going around, or believing in all that and trying to "follow the rules". Pretty much any major decision awards one of them, with occasional chances to avoid either. How many marks you accumulate would determine which final boss you would face and ending you would receive (including game over if you fail your last battle).
  • Know When to Fold 'Em: Your goal in The Last King scenario is not to "win" (in fact, this scenario lacks any win condition), or kill all monsters, but to gather as much info as possible, and retreat with it while you still can. At least one investigator must retreat before it's too late, otherwise it would be All for Nothing: you would simply forget everything you gathered.
  • Maximum HP Reduction: "The Tattered Cloak" boosts all stats by 1 while investigator has less than 4 remaining Sanity, but also decreases maximum Sanity by 1.
  • Mini-Boss: People behind The King in Yellow play were corrupted by Hastur, and now lead his cultists on their missions. Any scenario past second (excluding final one) has exactly one of them showing up in the middle of scenario (assuming you didn't kill them on the party) to cause you problem. They are nowhere near Hastur's level of power, but can cause problems nonetheless:
    • Sebastien Moreau always hits his targets, and hits hard; you can't cancel his attacks.
    • Constance Dumaine is slowest, but also hardest to actually damage.
    • Jordan Perry is extremely durable, and, to add insult into injury, heals damage every round.
    • Ishimaru Haruko is most fragile — but also the one you would really want to just avoid (only to notice she's amongst hardest to evade) — all because whenever she takes damage, she forces you to draw encounter cards.
    • Ashleigh Clarke prevents investigators from drawing cards during upkeep just by being in the same location.
    • Throughout the campaign investigators frequently deal with Beast of Aldebaran, huge and dangerous monster. It appears for the last time during Dim Carcosa, where it turns out that it was mutated Dianne Divine (if "Dianne" was even human to begin with).
  • Multiple Endings: Three possible endings, depending on which path was taken ("doubts", "conviction", or neither) and thus which of the three versions of Hastur was defeated. First two makes Hastur make the final laugh at investigators, but the third one allows them to defiantly throw the Pallid Mask into the ocean, showing that they've emerged truly victorious... but also much more scared.
  • Nasty Party: Setting of The Last King scenario; to learn more about ill-fated play which they just survived, investigators infiltrated the party set by people related to it. This is because they are not even humans any more. Not that human guests, being violently insane, are any better.
  • Non-Indicative Difficulty: When playing on easier difficulty, final battle against Hastur (except when on on the "doubts" path) can end up being much harder than on harder difficulties, as he (when attacked or evaded by investigators with no sanity left) turns all "+1", "0" and "-1", as well as Elder Sign tokens into auto-failure; the difficulty levels affects the chaos bag composition, meaning that there would be fewer such tokens in the bag. The players only learns about it once they reach the Final Boss...
  • No Points for Neutrality: Played With. Attempt to avoid accumulating either doubts or convictions would only result in harder version of Hastur as final boss, and you receiving both physical and mental traumas (other endings have only one kind, depending on which boss you faced). But, if you survive this, you receive only ending where you are shown to be truly triumphant over Hastur, due to refusing to play by his rules (assuming you weren't possessed, that is), while others still let him make last laugh.
  • No-Sell:
    • Poltergeist can't be damaged by any means, excluding through "Spell" or "Relic" cards, or through encounter cards.
    • There are three versions of final battle with Hastur; if "The King in Yellow" version is used (requires being on "doubt" path), Hastur is completely immune to any damage, unless it's done through story cards.
  • Paranoia Fuel: invoked This campaign aims to achieve this effect, as part of the madness theme. Just as Hastur screws with his victims, the campaign screws with its players, forcing them to doubt if they do the right things at certain points by implying some possible dire consequences, which may or may not really occur later (on the first play, you can never be sure), or outright screws with their mind.
    • Any outcome of any scenario save for the very last one alters chaos bag for the next scenario, but on the blind run you have no way to check wether it would be for the best or for the worst.
    • This campaign makes heavy use of "hidden" cards, which are supposed to be, well, hidden from your teammates, secretly waiting in your hand until the right time comes; they always result in nasty surprise for everyone involved when they finally set off, so if your friends starting acting weirdly, they may hiding something — or suspecting you of doing the same.
    • Several scenarios have their own quirks:
      • If you look at the reverse side of Act 1 in The Last King (there is no in-game reason to do so, so it was done either by mistake or out of curiosity), the game directly questions your sanity.
      • Echoes of the Past constantly adds up tension, by implying that something horrible would happen if Hastur's followers would find information they seek first, and then... nothing special happens, with the rest of campaign going pretty much unaltered; well, you missed opportunity to earn some (double-edged) story assets, and any outcome of any scenario affects chaos bag for the next one, but that's it.
      • The Black Star Rise has two agenda decks, one of which is genuine threat, and other is your actual goal, but you have no way to check which one is correct one until you finish the Agenda 2 of either one.
  • Quirky Miniboss Squad: In The Last King scenario, investigators infiltrate a party and meet the people behind recent events. At first, they look (somewhat) normal. Then they start mutating, one by one, and become hostile. Each one of them, unless killed here (with exception of Dianne Divine, who can't be killed), would appear as an (optional) Mini-Boss in subsequent scenarios. Each one of them has unique abilities which make them pain the ass to face. And then, in the very last scenario, it turns out that another recurring monster, Beast from Aldebaran, was no one else by Dianne herself — when she attacks you for the last time on Hastur orders.
  • Reality Bleed: Hastur's plot involves gradually merging Earth and Carcosa.
    • In areas plagued by Hastur's influence, weird things starts to occur, like bleeding walls or hostile ghosts' attacks.
    • In Black Stars Rise, this plan comes to its final stage when Hastur's followers managed to open the portal to Carcosa. The only way to stop it is to find a way to infiltrate Carcosa and confront Hastur himself.
  • Rocks Fall, Everyone Dies:
    • In The Unspeakable Oath, investigators must accomplish their task and escape before final agenda advances, or all involved investigators would be driven insane by Hastur's visions, permanently becoming asylum's inhabitants themselves. If this happens, investigations would be continued by the new team, who would learn of their demise from newspapers.
    • Hastur's plan involves merging our world with Carcosa. If he ever succeeds, humanity becomes his slaves. By the end of campaign, he comes dangerously close to actually accomplish this plan, so allowing final agenda in any of the two final scenarios to advance means instant defeat and insanity.
  • Speak of the Devil: If you heed Daniel's warning, each time an investigators says Hastur's name, they suffer 1 horror. Including during the scenario's setup. One of achievements in Return to the Path to Carcosa requires doing this seven or more times during single scenario and/or its setup.
  • Unintentionally Unwinnable: The Pallid Mask has an enemy, "Corpse Dweller", which spawns by discarding "Humanoid" enemies in play and taking their place. Problem is, nothing in the rules prevents it from discarding The Man in the Pallid Mask (also known as the Stranger); this doesn't count as him being defeated, and since there's no way to respawn him, this strips investigators of their only way to win scenario. This gets addressed in Return to the Path to Carcosa, where additional rulings specifically forbids Corpse Dweller from targeting the Stranger.
  • Video Game Cruelty Punishment: You can kill all party guests at the end of The Last King. While this guarantees that they never appear again in subsequent scenarios, Hastur later uses the investigators' hidden sense of guilt against them, giving all investigators mental trauma.
  • What Happened to the Mouse?: If Dianne Devine survives The Last King, she never appears again. Neither would be other monsters if you spare them at their second appearance.
  • You Are Already Dead: Dim Carcosa has unique set of cards, "Possession". They all can be discarded (requiring to pay some not exactly small price, unique for each card), but what makes them dangerous is that they would instantly kill any investigator the moment their total amount of horror exceeds threshold of their doubled max Sanity (which can happen very easily, due to scenario being extremely horror-heavy). Including on drawing them. And then Return to the Path to Carcosa adds High Priests of Hastur, who, instead of normal attack, immediately drives insane anyone who's possessed.
  • You Dirty Rat!: The Miskatonic Playhose in Curtain Call is infested with rats, who attack any nearby investigator on sight. It's unclear wether it was always like this, or this is Hastur's influence.

     The Forgotten Age tropes 
  • All of Time at Once: In Shattered Aeons, you can travel to different location in different times, including Atlantis right before its demise, the ancient world and a devastated city in distant future long after humanity's extinction.
  • Big Bad Ensemble: Investigators must fight with Snake People of Valusia and Brotherhood, who're both hunting for the Relic of Ages. Although ultimately they are the lesser of your problems.
  • Choose a Handicap:
    • Each time the investigators sides with either Alejandro or Ichtaka, the "Cultist" or "Tablet" chaos tokens gets added into the chaos pool, respectively, both of which have their own negative effects.
    • Choosing to side with neither Alejandro nor Ichtaka permanently removes their respective tokens from the pool, but also adds the "Elder Things" tokens, which potentially may be even worse; however, doing so is the first step on the path to the Golden Ending.
  • Cosmic Keystone: Unsurprisingly, Relic of Ages turns out to be this. It is key component to stabilise space/time continuum, and in ''Shattered Aeons" it becomes humanity's last and only chance for survival. And to get the best ending, you must not only to keep it intact, but also do some specific choices in order for it to reach its full potential.
  • Demonic Possession: Halfway through campaign, investigators would learn that Alejandro is controlled by the Yithian. Depending on how you play campaign, he can either shrug it and remember everything, or remain hostile to you. Unfortunately, it is not possible to save him on the path to the epilogue.
  • Do Not Taunt Cthulhu: The Vengeance points mechanic. Some actions (like killing certain snakes or his followers, or desecrating his temples) enrage Yig, "awarding" you with vengeance points. Certain game elements become more dangerous if you accumulate too many points, notably:
    • The Doom of Eztli has different outcome for defeated investigators depending on the vengeance points accumulated. If there're four or more points, each defeated investigator gets killed by angry snakes. If there're less than four, investigator survives unscarred (if not counting normal defeat-caused effects, like new traumas), but due to it by itself adding three points, it would work only for one investigator (two, if certain precautions, counter-intuitive on the first playthrough, are made).
    • Depths of Yoth provide you with progressively less time and more enemies if you test Yig's patience too much. It's entirely possible to skip all but the last two (out of seven) agendas this way.
  • Endless Game: Depths of Yoth in standalone mode has no victory condition, as the game doesn't end once the 5th floor is reached. Instead, the game continues further and further until all investigator are defeated, with final agenda's effects becoming progressively more dangerous with each new floor. The whole point is not to "win", but to set a new survival record.
  • Enemy Mine: In Shattered Aeons, two (out of five available) endings allow you to side with either Valusians or the Yithians, and save their civilisation, while dooming our own.
  • Escort Mission: In Shattered Aeons, if an investigator with the Relic of Ages gets eliminated (or it permanently leaves play for any other reason), the whole party loses. While they get their job done, their teammates must ensure their survival.
  • Evil All Along: Alejandro is helpful at first, but actually has his own agenda, due to actually being Yithian agent all along. It's possible to save him and release him from Yithian mind control, but not on the path to the Golden Ending.
  • Face–Heel Turn: Ichtaka actually starts on your side, but towards the end of campaign realises her Valusian heritage, and betrays you. It wouldn't happen if she trusts you enough to reject Yig's call, but this is impossible to achieve on the path to the Golden Ending.
  • Foreshadowing: There is a good reason why you receive additional chaos tokens every time you side with Ichtaca or Alejandro.
  • Giant Space Flea from Nowhere: In Shattered Aeons, the Formless Spawn; it's a... formless blob of... something, it's not related to either Valusians or Brotherhood, and there's almost no explanation in-story just what it is. Most likely, it was added to give players a Final Boss even if they miss the Golden Ending.
  • Gimmick Level:
    • Threads of Fate has three (four with Return to the Forgotten Age) act decks — and very limited time to complete them all. However, doing so awards players with various benefits for subsequent scenarios.
    • The City of Archives forces you to play as Yithians instead of your normal investigators, and is completely build upon trying to play around hand size limitations it forces on you.
    • Depths of Yoth has investigators constantly running away from ever growing horde of Snake People through several randomly-generated levels.
  • Golden Ending: If you do everything just right throughout whole campaign, you can go back in time and prevent the whole plot from happening.
  • Identity Amnesia: The main threat of The City of Archives. The investigators have been kidnapped by Yithians, and their minds are placed in Yithian bodies. As the agenda progresses, they gradually forget more and more, until they forgot it completely. This is also what happened to Alejandro, who potentially may be saved at the end of this scenario, depending on the path players took previously.
  • Increasingly Lethal Enemy:
    • The "Agents of Yig" encounter set exists to punish the investigators if they get too many vengeance points, with the enemies getting stronger the more vengeance points the players have. Brood of Yig gains potentially unlimited boost to Fight, eventually becoming borderline unkillable, while Serpent from Yoth gains new abilities, maxing out at 3 vengeance.
    • Brotherhood Cultist gains 1 Doom token each time you try to attack it, and each time he gains a Doom token, he gains +1 to Fight and Evade ratings, making it even harder to deal with him if you fail to dispatch him quickly enough.
    • "The Secret Must Be Kept" treachery from the "Threads of Fate" scenario starts with average test difficulty to avoid and only deals 1 point of damage and horror, but gets +1 to all of those for every completed act deck, potentially making it very lethal if the game lasts for long enough. On top of that, it has "peril", meaning that other players can't bail you out.
    • "Lightless Shadow" and "Bathophobia" treacheries from "The Depths of Yoth" scenario accumulates in difficulty with every depth level, and on a failure, deals damage and horror, respectively. In the standalone mode, where there's no upper limit of the depth level, they can stuck up infinitely.
    • The Formless Spawn starts with relatively tame Fight and Evade ratings, but keeps accumulating them the more Doom is in play; there's no upper limit other than agendas' Doom threshold.
    • Return to the Forgotten Age introduced Stolen Mind enemy, which starts with low Fight stat, but progressively increases it as it keeps accumulating Doom (which it does automatically every turn).
  • Know When to Fold 'Em:Threads of Fate has three separate act decks (with Return to the Forgotten Age adding fourth one). None of them are mandatory to finish the campaign (though Relic of Ages must be secured if you plan to reach Golden Ending), but completion of at least act 1 of each deck rewards investigators with bonus experience, and each deck on completion reward you with some bonuses. While tempting, being too greedy may result not only in failure to reach these goals, but also mental trauma for each not-resigned investigator once the agenda deck is finished. Instead, investigators must effectively use their limited time and resources to achieve as much as they can and retreat when there is no more time left to take further risks, while prioritising those goals which are most desired for subsequent scenarios.
  • Maximum HP Reduction: "Curse of Yig" treachery decreases maximum Health by 1 until it gets dealt with by passing a Will powercheck.
  • Mental Time Travel: In The City of Archives investigators have been kidnapped by Yithians, and their minds are placed in Yithian bodies in the city of Pnakotus, which seemingly exists outside of time. Now they must find a way to escape, and return to their time and their true bodies. Problem is, they suffer from Identity Amnesia and must firstly remember who they really are. This wouldn't be easy, since the longer time goes, the higher it becomes to resist mind-altering, until it becomes irreversible.
  • Multiple Endings: The Shattered Aeons has several outcomes (other than let the time break and destroy the world), which determines the fate of the world. Investigators have an option to side with either Alejandro or Ichtaka (assuming they were not recruited before), and help them to save Pnakotus or Valusia, respectively, dooming humanity in the process. This counts as a "victory", but blocks the possibility to transfer surviving investigators into a different campaign, for obvious reasons. Alternatively, if investigators sticks with their mission, they gain one of the two endings depending on wether they fulfilled certain requirements. If they didn't, campaign ends with them just stabilising the time; otherwise, they use the Relic of Times to turn back time and prevent the collapse in the first place (through fighting the True Final Boss), reaching the campaign's Golden Ending.
  • Mutually Exclusive Party Members: If you side with Ichtaca, Alejandro will not work with you, and vice versa.
  • No-Gear Level: The City of Archives comes as close to it as possible. Players have reduced hand size, restricted from putting "Item" Assets in play by default, and can't use any unique "Items" whatsoever (they are outright removed from the game). In combination with Yithian body having overall poor stats, relatively monsters and treacheries suddenly becomes much more problematic.
  • No Points for Neutrality: Zigzagged. Due to their recruitment requirements, you must decide who you want in your team (Ichtaka or Alejandro), and stick with them to the very end, or you would recruit neither one. However, deliberatly choosing to ally with none of them and "forging your own path", which makes the campaign even harder, is actually one of requirements for the Golden Ending.
  • Non-Standard Game Over:
    • In Depths of Yoth, if the investigators are defeated, they fall to the Depths of Yoth, and their survival depends on how long (from each "level" they fell) this fall was. If they fall from the first level, they die and campaign ends, even if you still have unused investigators left. Levels two and three injures them (leading to 2 and 1 physical traumas, respectively), but it's not instantly fatal, unless all investigators have already accumulated too many traumas. If all currently played investigators die after the fall, it also ends in a Game Over, even if there are still unused investigators left.
    • Shattered Aeons has two:
      • If investigator with the Relic of Ages gets eliminated, or otherwise permanently loses it, the whole party loses, because it is the key to stabilise the space/time continuum.
      • While formally it's still treated as "win", if you side with Ichtaca or Alejandro and help them to save Valusia/Pnakotus respectively, humanity is no more, and you can't transfer your investigators to a new campaign, so it may as well be a Game Over.
  • Permanently Missable Content:
  • Power Nullifier: "Snakescourge" treachery disables all abilities on Items you have in play for entire turn.
  • Rocks Fall, Everyone Dies: In Shattered Aeons, if investigators took too long or failed to protect the Relic of Ages, time itself dissolves, and people's minds are too weak to survive this. Same result is achieved if the investigators take too long to defeat Yig during the Epilogue scenario.
  • Skippable Boss:
    • Throughout many campaign scenarios, you are pursued by the Harbinger of Valusia. It is a particularly tough enemy, but it can't heal its wounds between scenarios, so if you keep fighting it, eventually it dies. However, fighting it does not worth it: while you do save yourself some trouble by eliminating it, not only it does not award any experience, it also "awards" you with whopping 5 vengeance points, which can make your life much harder than if you simply avoid it, which isn't even that hard.
    • In Depths of Yoth, if you manage to avoid accumulating even single vengeance point during the campaign, Yig does not appear at all. Even if he appears, he may be avoided (and, despite him awarding a lot of bonus experience, it may be preferable preferable, since your actual goal has nothing to do with fighting giant snakes, and you have little time to waste.
  • Snake People: Majority of your enemies consists of serpent people, ranging in size from human-like to really enormous ones. Surprisingly (or not), Ichtaca turns out to be one as well, though depending on your previous actions, she may or may not reject her snake heritage.
  • Snakes Are Sinister: Besides Snake People, several scenarios contain actual snakes, from "normal" ones to enormous man-eating ones called "Basilisks". All of them are hostile to investigators. And no snake is more sinister than Yig himself.
  • Stable Time Loop: Entire point of Turn Back Time is to try and prevent Relic of Ages from ever being disturbed. However, if investigators fail on this mission, this would lead to the Relic being found again, ensuring that time would be locked in eternal repetition of the same cycle, with no foreseeable future.
  • Starfish Aliens: Halfway through campaign it turns out that The Brotherhood cultists are not even humans, but rather Yithians.
  • Take a Third Option: You may choose to forge your own path, instead of siding with Ichtaca or Alejandro, despite it seemingly providing nothing but troubles. It's actually mandatory to achieve the Golden Ending.
  • Time Crash: By the time of Shattered Aeons time itself starts to collapse, and now it's up to the investigators to save it before it's too late.
  • Time-Limit Boss: In Turn Back Time, the boss fight with Yig must be completed before the final agenda advances (and Yig receives reinforcements), otherwise it would all be for nothing.
  • True Final Boss: Yig, if you successfully go back in time, is the final boss of the Epilogue scenario.

     The Circle Undone tropes 
  • The Atoner: If Anette gets possessed by Keziah and survives events of In the Clutches of Chaos, she would offer her help in saving the world, to atone for unwillingly causing all of this; unlike Sanford, she actually recognises that this is her fault. You can accept it, or try to arrest her.
  • Big Bad Ensemble: Most of campaign is consist of conflict between Coven (lead by witch Anette Mason), and Silver Twilight Lodge (lead by wizard Carl Sanford), until the end of In the Clutches of Chaos, where their whole conflict becomes insignificant in the face of Azathoth's possible awakening.
  • Big Bad Wannabe: Both parties in Big Bad Ensemble, in their own ways:
    • Carl Sanford wants to Ascend to a Higher Plane of Existence, no matter the cost, but even if he comes victorious out of his conflict with Coven, his plan goes horribly, horribly wrong, and if investigators fails to stop him in time, he only gets himself and the rest of the Lodge killed.
    • Anette Mason never was equal partner in her alliance with Spectral Watcher, and once she completes her task, she instantly gets possessed, and unless investigators interferes, leads her people to their doom.
  • Boss in Mook Clothing:
    • Piper of Azathoth has huge health not far away from actual boss, and can make a short work on everyone in its position unless dispatched quickly. It also has "Elite" trait, making it immune to many abilities normally able to one-shot regular monsters, and even if gets killed off, it can easily return to the game through "Daemonic Piping" treachery (which is part of regular encounter deck). Despite never being actual goal of any scenario, it keeps reappearing in many scenarios to make investigators suffer.
    • Mindless Dancer has only slightly less health than Piper of Azathoth, has even higher Fight than it, and is extremely mobile, meaning you have no chance to reliably outrun it. It's not Elite, but there are three of these fellas in the deck.
  • Dark World: Spectral Realm (at least, those parts you may visit) copies "real" world, but is much more dangerous and inhabited by hostile ghosts and other spectral monsters.
  • Dead All Along: If investigators fails The Wages of Sin scenario, Spectral Watcher, who was ready to kill them all, for whatever reason leaves them alone. Epilogue, however, reveals that Spectral Watcher actually killed them... and now, when they saved the world, it's time to go... or start another adventure.
  • Deal with the Devil: In the end of Before the Black Throne, If you can't complete ritual and lead investigator is unfit to join the Pipers to pacify Azathoth (or you refuse to do either of this), only remaining option (besides dooming whole Universe is to make a deal with Nyarlathotep.
  • Decoy Protagonist: In prologue scenario you are introduced to four new characters, who would be your Player Characters for this scenario. Then they all get kidnapped and/or killed, after which actual team of investigators arrive, to investigate what happened to them.
  • Demonic Possession: Witches' plan involved summoning Keziah Mason's spirit back into our world, and let her possess her descendant, Anette, so they would have great ally in their struggle against old enemies. Plan went bad very fast, since Keziah has entirely different plans in mind.
  • Disc-One Final Boss: While Carl Sanford and Anette Mason are main threat for the most of campaign, no matter with whom you side and who wins in their conflict, they gets dealt with just before the final scenario, Before the Black Throne, and final threat to our world is Azathoth, The Daemon Sultan.
  • The Dragon: Both Carl Sanford and Anette Mason are always accompanied by their most trusted underlings, Josef Meiger and Erynn, respectively. Of them, only Josef can be fought and slain.
  • Earn Your Bad Ending: Make the "right" decisions at several plot points, and you can not just lead one of the sides to utter triumph, but actually join them in their goal. This ends the campaign prematurely, however, just before the crucial moment which normally leads to Azathoth being disturbed, which may or may not still happen without investigators being ready to stop it.
    • If they remains devoid to the Lodge throughout the entire campaign, protects their key members (particularly Josef Meiger), aids them everywhere and refuses to betray them even when directly questioning wether Carl Sanford can be trusted, the investigators may become the most trusted members of Sanford's Inner Circle.
    • Return to the Circle Undone adds a new ending for Coven-aligned players. If they accumulates enough knowledge of the Coven's cause and methods, earns Erin's trust and leads them to triumph over the Lodge, the investigators may join the witches in building a "better future".
  • Eldritch Location:
    • Spectral Realm, shadow version of our world, inhabited by hostile ghosts and spectral monsters.
    • Last battle would occur not on Earth, but in the centre of Universe, before the Black Throne of Azathoth.
  • The End of the World as We Know It: If Azathoth ever awakens, it would be end not just for our world, but for all Universe.
  • Enemy Mine:
    • In Union and Disillusion, you would side with Anette Mason against Silver Twilight Lodge, or vice versa, and bring them to triumph over other side and help them to achieve their goal. No matter whom you choose, they would backstab you afterwards, with exact reason varying depending on the side you favoured. Events of the subsequent scenarios would be largely the same, with only major change being which boss you would face.
    • In In the Clutches of Chaos, if Anette/Sanford survives mayhem they caused (which happens if investigators managed to stop them before they come too far with their plans), they would offer help in saving the world. You can accept it, refuse or try to arrest them (in Sanford's case, you can also replace him as new master of the Lodge).
  • Evil Is Not a Toy: Both sides of the Coven/Lodge conflict learns the hard way while playing with such powers is a bad idea if they actually prevail:
    • Carl Sanford wished to Ascend to a Higher Plane of Existence, but vastly overestimated his ability to control forces he used for this. Ultimately this may result in him bringing humanity and the whole Universe at the edge of destruction, and quite possibly causing his own death before story would even conclude.
    • Anette Mason wishes to utilise Keziah's Azathoth-granted powers for the greater good of her people, naively thinking that this would work. It didn't, and end result is pretty much the same as with Sanford's ambitions — near apocalyptical.
  • Evil vs. Evil: Both sides of conflict are dark sorcerers, willing to let many people die to achieve their goals. Still, to deal with Spectral Watcher, investigators must decide who is lesser evil, and side with them.
  • Failure Is the Only Option: The prologue flat-out tells you at the beginning that it's only going to end once all four of its investigators are defeated; you just need to get as many clues as possible to influence the main campaign itself. How those investigators get defeated determines if, in Union and Disillusion, they're still alive, dead, or neither.
  • Foreshadowing:
    • Any time investigators sides with Lodge in any way (starting from accepting offer to join the Lodge), chaos bag receives new "Cultist" tokens (absent by default); this isn't the first time when questionable decisions "awards" new chaos tokens, and indeed, Lodge soon shows its dark side.
    • Carl Sanford's weird reaction to investigators (who were just accepted into Inner Circle) surviving Spectral Watcher's embrace foreshadows reveal of the epilogue — that investigators actually didn't make it; they just refused to die, continuing fighting till the end.
  • Four-Man Band: Investigators in prologue scenario must operate as a team and cover each other's weak points to... well, not survive, but to achieve the best result before inevitable defeat.
  • Gimmick Level:
    • In the Clutches of Chaos has no usual once-per-turn doom increasing. Instead, scenario uses unique breaches/incursions mechanic, which represents growing chaos. Breaches are placed at random each turn (and some scenario-specific effects may add even more), and once any location accumulates four or more, incursion occurs, which not only increases doom on agenda, but also spreads additional breaches on other locations — and yes, this may cause chair reaction.
    • Before the Black Throne is essentially set up in space. Not only level generates at random (thrice, once for each act), but there may be some "empty spaces" between locations, which normally can't be entered by anyone (though there's specific "hunter" enemy which can visit them during their hunt), but counts for determining distances between locations. "Empty spaces" are marked by cards taken from players cards (they would be shuffled back when empty spaces leave play by any means).
  • Gone Horribly Wrong: Karl Sanford wants to steal Keziah's powers. Anette wants to resurrect her as powerful ally. No matter who of them succeeds, this results in disturbing Azathoth, majority of their followers dying, and potentially their own deaths as well.
  • The Goomba: Coven Initiate enemy does have an ability, but it only triggers on their spawning (and even then, very rarely), and certainly does nothing to prevent them from being slaughtered. In fact, sometimes, they're more dangerous when dead, and even then, not by themselves, but through other enemy's effects.
  • Greater-Scope Villain: While Azathoth is the ultimate threat to humanity, Azathoth himself is asleep (in fact, if he ever gets awakened, it would cause The End of the World as We Know It); his sleep gets disturbed by either Anette Mason, or Carl Sanford, who both unwillingly interacted with him. Final task is not to fight him (he is invincible), but to ensure that he would continue sleeping.
  • Heads I Win, Tails You Lose:
    • In Union and Disillusion, no matter which side actually wins (and wether you supported victors or losers), they would betray you (loser would abandon you while Coven/Lodge battle itself would cause massive destruction and injure any investigator present there; winner would simply turn on you once you cease to become useful, albeit you at least leave unharmed), and whoever prevails in Coven/Lodge conflict, escalates previous problems to near-apocalyptic level, either trough Mason's rituals, or through Sanford's incompetence, leading to the events of In The Clutches of Chaos scenario, only differing in which enemies you would face here.
    • In In the Clutches of Chaos, wether you stop Anette/Sanford or not, their ritual would disturb Azathoth's sleep, bringing Universe on the edge of destruction. Only thing which actually changes is wether they would survive this.
  • Heel–Face Turn: When their antics results in Azathoth's slumber being disturbed, bringing our universe on the brink of destruction, either Anette Mason or Carl Sanford (depending on path chosen) would offer their help. Anette also greatly regrets making mistake of trusting her ancestor, while her underling Erynn actually aids in purging Keziah's spirit.
  • Here We Go Again!: Epilogue consists of several entries, which may (or may not) happen depending on certain events during campaign. All but one of them suggests that this isn't the end.
    • If Anette gets arrested, she uses unknown magic to escape. This highly reminds about how Keziah's story once started...
    • If investigators replaced Carl Sanford as leader of the Lodge, they would become confident that they may protect humanity from otherworldly dangers. Considering all Sanford's talks about "greater good of mankind", this may be early signs of investigators going the same route as he did.
    • If investigators made a deal with Nyarlathothep, he would visit them eventually to force them to pay up their "debt".
  • Heroic Sacrifice: In on of the three possible (non-failure) endings the lead investigator sacrifice themselves and joins demonic pipers to put Azathoth to rest once again.
  • Increasingly Lethal Enemy: In The Secret Name, all enemies gain +1 health per current agenda, including very first one. While with bosses, this wouldn't change much due to them being tough already, this also applies to constantly spawning swarms of rats, upping them to above-average 4 health at third agenda. This in combination with them having massive Fight boost from Brown Jenkin.
  • Kaizo Trap: When Vengeful Witch gets defeated, she deals her damage and horror to each investigator in her location. What makes this attack dangerous is that those are treated as direct damage and horror, meaning you can't soak them with assets.
  • King Mook: Rats in The Secret Name can be accompanied by Brown Jenkin, who triples their damage just by being presented.
  • A Lighter Shade of Black: Unlike Carl Sanford, Anette Mason fights for her people, who was hunted and killed during Salem "trials", and she has no personal hatred for investigators, her main target is Silver Twilight Lodge. But, (unknowingly to her) her mysterious ally, Keziah Mason, serves Azathoth and intends to bring The End of the World as We Know It. She actually recognises her mistakes if she survives, and offers her help with fixing at least some of them; her close supporter, Erynn, was also unimpressed by results of her plan and calls her out on it.
  • Locked Door: Major part of For the Greater Good scenario involves obtaining different keys to enter restricted section of Silver Twilight Lodge's headquarters.
  • The Mole: Depending on your standing with the Lodge, you can exploit their trust to infiltrate their headquarters and learn more. If you perform well enough, they may even allow you into their Inner Circle.
  • Multiple Endings: Investigators have several ways to pacify Azathoth, depending on which "mementos" they gather and wether they accepted their fate or not (with possible "neutral" option being just barely better than armageddon). Alternatively, they can side with either Lodge or Coven and lead them to victory, ending campaign prematurely.
  • Never My Fault: If Josef Meiger gets killed during On the Death's Doorstep, Carl Sanford would blame investigators for deaths in Silver Twilight Estate, no matter wether it was their fault, or not. Right after admitting that he provoked Spectral Watcher to attack on purpose, and without warning anyone.
  • Nice Job Breaking It, Hero: Conflict between Anette Mason and Carl Sanford ultimately disturbs Azathoth in his dream. If he awakens, it would mean The End of the World as We Know It.
  • Non Standard Game Over: In Before the Black Throne, if, at any point, there are ten or more doom tokens on Azathoth, he immediately awakes and devours the Universe. It's possible to happen even before agenda deck finishes, mainly during agenda advancement, since Azathoth "consumes" all doom on cultists in play.
  • Not-So-Well-Intentioned Extremist: According to Anette, Carl Sanford is this, since only thing he cares about is to Ascend to a Higher Plane of Existence. And indeed, when he obtains powers of Spectral Watcher for himself, he drops all "helping humanity" demagogy, and starts gloating about his new found power. Investigators wouldn't even receive a choice to side with him unless they were fiercely loyal to him in all previous scenarios.
  • Permanently Missable Content:
    • Many mementos can be missed by failing the scenario; alternatively, it may provide different mementos depending on the resolution. Missing some mementos, in turn, can cut off some of the endings.
    • The endings where you side with either the Lodge or the Coven requires to fulfil certain conditions, each of which can be failed.
    • Unless the investigators have passed the Witching Hour scenario in a specific way, they wouldn't be able to meet Erin in The Wages of Sin, and even if they do, they still need to complete it in specific way to gain her support.
  • Predecessor Villain: Many of campaign's events can be traced back to Keziah Mason.
    • Whole point of The Secret Name is to uncover as much information about Keziah Mason as possible, and learn wether she's related to Anette Mason and her Coven.
    • In The Wages of Sin, investigators go to Hangman's Hill — the place of Witch Trials' executions — in hope to find ghosts of other old witches and learn something about Keziah from them.
  • Psychopomp: The island in ''The Union and Disillusion" is inhabited by the soul-catching birds, whippoorwills.
  • Puzzle Boss: In Before the Black Throne, you can't defeat Azathoth; he simply lacks any stats besides damage whatsoever. Instead, you must find how to pacify him.
  • Rocks Fall, Everyone Dies: In Before the Black Throne, like in any game he appears in, if at any moment Azathoth awakens, it's instant game over.
  • Stalked by the Bell: In Before the Black Throne, investigators must find a way to pacify Azathoth before he awakes, otherwise it would mean The End of the World as We Know It. This threat is measured by Doom tokens on Azathoth; each time agenda advances, Azathoth receives all doom tokens from cultist currently in play, and when agenda deck ends, instead of immediate failure, game will continue, but any further doom would be put directly on Azathoth. Once there are at least ten doom tokens of Azathoth, it's an immediate apocalypse and game over.
  • Story Branching: Siding with either the Lodge or the Coven would alters the campaign at several points, giving you different playthroughs:
    • Depending on the outcome of At Death’s Doorstep, you would either be accepted into the Lodge, or become its enemy. When the time comes to infiltrate the Lodge's HQ in For the Greater Good scenario, it would affect both how you would come in, and what you would face inside.
    • At the start of the Union and Disillusion scenario, you finally pick up your allegiance, siding with either the Lodge or the Coven, which would alter not just the encounter deck, but also how you progress through this scenario and your final goal. And outcome of this scenario determines whom you would face in In the Clutches of Chaos scenario, giving you two unique encounter deck compositions and different bosses.
  • Tarot Motifs: The first agenda in any scenario's agenda deck is named after different Tarot cards.
  • Token Good Teammate: Erynn is the only known witch who, instead of blindly following Anette, tries to learn more about their new "ally". She actually joins the investigators if they convince her that they can be trusted, and goes against Anette when she gets possessed by Keziah, while the rest of Coven gleefully participates in the madness. She also assists in putting down Keziah, regardless of wether she trusts the investigators or not.
  • Unreliable Expositor: Both Anette Mason and Carl Sanford claims that they are Well-Intentioned Extremist who wants to use their power for good of humanity, while another one is the main cause of all those troubles. While Anette did summon Spectral Watcher, at least she was just as unaware about its true intentions or true nature as everyone else, while Sanford probably just lies to cover his real motifs – Ascend to a Higher Plane of Existence.
  • Utopia Justifies the Means: Even if taking Sanford's motives to help humanity as sincere, he is still willing to risk his people just to prove his theory that Spectral Watcher gets attracted to large crowds of people. This potentially may end with his trusted underling, Josef Meiger, being killed, but Sanford considers it to be "price of the progress".
  • Void Between the Worlds: Before the Black Throne happens at the centre of the Universe. Void is both common obstacle and lethal threat; any investigator who gets defeated here, would fall into endless space void, alive, leading to them being driven insane.
    Your steed does not catch you when you fall. Down and down and down, through endless voids of sentient blackness, you fall. And fall. And fall. And fall. You beg and scream and plead and pray for an end, even for a floor upon which to crash upon, but it never comes. You will still be falling when the universe ends.
  • Wicked Witch: Besides Anette Mason and her Coven, there are ghosts of victims of Salem Trials, and Keziah Mason herself, who are very hostile to the descendants of their prosecutors.
  • You Dirty Rat!: Witch House in The Secret Name is full of flesh-hungry rats, including Brown Jenkin himself. In fact, they are your only non-boss enemies for this scenario. Unlike most scenarios including them, this time they may become an actual threat, due to massive bonus to Fight provided by aforementioned Brown Jenkin, and health value which grows with every Agenda.

     The Dream Eaters tropes 
  • Abandoned Hospital: Setting of Waking Nightmare is (almost) abandoned St. Mary's hospital... heavily infested with alien spiders.
  • Absurdly Long Stairway:
    • In Beyond the Gates of Sleep, investigators have to ascend through the Seventy Steps... only to immediately run into the Seven Hundred Steps.
    • In Thousand Shapes of Horror, there is a very long staircase which leads to the Underworld (which is part of the Dream Land). Thanks to The Unnameable's influence, it may become much longer than it seemed at first.
    • In the ending where team returns back home, they would use the same staircase Virgil described in his writings to descend back into Waking World. Problem is not how to escape, problem is how to find that staircase, which requires counter-intuitive actions players likely wouldn't try on the blind run (especially in standalone, where's Black Cat, who may hint on it, isn't presented).
  • Actually Four Mooks: The "Swarm" mechanic allows one monster to impersonate several copies of itself, but they can't separate from each other.
  • Advancing Boss of Doom: In A Thousand Shapes of Horror, The Unnameable can't be defeated; you must run from it (at first, it can only harm you directly in very limited area). But you still can (and must, in order to progress) damage it.
  • And the Adventure Continues:
    • In Weaver of the Cosmos, if investigators survived, but didn't secure the short way into the Dreamlands, only escape route remains — to brute-force their way through first the Underworld, and then through the Dreamlands. If campaign is played as standalone, endings just cuts off, allowing players to decide by themselves wether they did it or not (though investigators are still may be imported). If game is played in combined campaign mode, then we learn more about their fate.
    • In Epilogue 15, the team "A" travels beneath the Leng monastery on order to find their friends, who are still trapped in the Underworld. It cuts off before we learn how they do this, though the brief summation states that two teams did eventually reunite.
  • All Webbed Up: No spider-themed horror would be complete without people being put in spider-silk cocoons:
    • In Waking Nightmare, if you fail to defend St. Mary's from dream-lands spiders, it would end like this for all its inhabitants.
    • In Weaver of the Cosmos, some of possible locations actually represents cocoons with spiders' past victims. They only add to whole horror of Atlach-Nacha's domain.
    • If investigators fails in their mission, in one of possible endings, the bridge between worlds would be completed, meaning whole Earth would become spiders' hunting grounds, with people who aren't consumed outright being put into cocoons. Countless cocoons. Investigators would actually try to break them, to no avail.
  • All Your Powers Combined: In Where the Gods Dwell, Nyarlathotep's true form combines keywords, health and damage/horror of all his other forms, and uses best combat and agility stats amongst its forms.
  • Ambiguously Evil: When playing in combined campaign mode, near beginning of campaign, the Black Cat offers its help, and asks what it can tell to the other group (it wouldn't make this offer in standalone mode). The way how game describes Black Cat makes it unclear wether it's a good idea to trust it, and helpfully provides an opportunity to refuse aid... which provides no rewards whatsoever.
  • Ambiguous Gender: The Black Cat's gender never gets stated anywhere in campaign (which only calls the Black Cat "it", like an actual animal, despite it being sapient).
  • Antagonist Title: In Weaver of the Cosmos, titular Weaver is no one else but Atlach-Nacha herself.
  • Based on a True Story: Virgil's "Tales from Nevermore" are allegedly based on his personal experiences. Of course, no one believes this. When things he described starts happening to other people for real, attracts the interest of the investigators, kickstarting the plot.
  • Big Bad Ensemble: While simultaneous, each story has different antagonists, who don't interact with each other directly and have separate agendas and minions. Their goals are also mutually exclusive, which means even if they both succeed, they are be forced to fight each other for control; humanity, obviously, can't survive even one of them, let alone both at once, fighting each other.
  • Bookend: Scenario 1A (Beyond the Gates of Sleep) starts with the investigators ascending through two Absurdly Long Stairways. The Golden Ending for scenario 4B (Weaver of the Cosmos) results in the second team of investigators using these same stairways to escape back to the Waking World.
  • Cats Are Mean: The Black Cat acts in a rather enigmatic way, making it unclear if it really can be trusted, and shows little empathy towards misfortune for anyone but itself. The game helpfully provides the opportunity to refuse its aid.
  • Choose a Handicap: When playing in the combined campaign mode, but not being on the path to the Golden Ending, it's possible to send the Black Cat to aid one of the teams, at the cost of making the other team's task harder.
  • Cobweb Jungle:
    • One of the "treachery" cards in spider-infested places is a cobweb huge enough you can actually stuck in it.
    • In Waking Nightmare, if infestation spreads out of control, cobwebs eventually would cover the entire building.
  • Demonic Possession: Fate of everyone whose dreams Nyarlathotep consumed; it allows him to possess their minds, so he would "awake" alongside them in Waking World, beginning his invasion.
  • Despair Event Horizon: In Weaver of the Cosmos, if investigators becomes trapped in Atlach-Nacha's domain, story ends with them realising they have next to zero chances to escape from the Underworld on their own, without any sort of direction.
  • Draconic Abomination: The Moonbound Byakhee in Dark Side of the Moon is a particularly big and dangerous byakhee, quite capable of tearing apart careless investigators. With high "alert", it hunts them.
  • Dream Land:
    • The Dream Quest story is set in the Dreamlands, and involves people getting stuck here against their will. Whatever caused this, and whatever may end this, it is certain that the only place the investigators can receive their answers is Unknown Kadath.
    • The Web of Dreams story involves the Dreamlands and "Waking World" (Earth) gradually merging together, which, if not prevented, destroys both worlds. To stop this from happening, investigators must find another way into the Dreamlands and through it, into the realm of the Eldritch Abomination that causes all of this.
  • Eldritch Location: The Dreamlands is a strange place, which does not abide the rules of the Waking World, and is inhabited by all sorts of weird (and often dangerous) creatures.
  • Everybody's Dead, Dave:
    • In Epilogue 7, the Black cat tries to warn team A about team B's demise, so they won't try to return for them, only to realise that they can't hear it anyway.
    • In Epilogue 11, the Black cat warns team A about team B's demise, and pleads them to not try to search for them, since they are doomed. They heed it.
  • "Everybody Dies" Ending: In Epilogue 1, after both teams fail on their tasks, Earth becomes the battlefield for two antagonistic Ancient Ones''. This is the only epilogue to explicitly state that the campaign is failed.
    There are no survivors.
  • Fed to the Beast: In Dark Side of the Moon, if the investigators fail to escape from the Moon and get captured by the Moon Beasts, they recognise Randolph Carter and feed him to the Moon Lizard. The last that can be heard of him is his scream.
  • Forced Sleep: The group that enters the Dreamlands was supposed to just prove it's real and go back, but for some reason get stuck there. According to Randolph Carter, this is not normal, because Dreamers are capable to waking up just by willing it. Something forces them to stay, and this "something" gradually kills them.
  • Genius Loci: In A Thousand Shapes of Horror, The House With No Name and The Unnameable are one and the same... and are not happy to see unwelcome guests. And the longer scenario goes, the more dangerous The Unnameable becomes.
  • Giant Spider: Stronger minions of Atlach-Nacha, ranging from Leng Spiders (dog-sized) to really huge ones.
  • Gimmick Level:
    • Dark Side of the Moon has the "Alert" mechanic, which gradually accumulates, separately for each investigator, and alters the way things goes for them for the worse. In order to win, investigators not only have to do what they came here for, but also find a way to reduce "Alert" before it overwhelms them.
    • Where the Gods Dwell, instead of the usual boss battle, has (Me's a Crowd several versions of) Nyarlathothep secretly attacking them from the encounter deck, after which they must find a way to get rid of it.
    • Weaver of the Cosmos makes heavy use of doom on locations (which, unlike most scenarios, is permanent here), but main gimmick is the final boss herself. Atlach-Nacha is a giant spider sitting in a centre of enormous cobweb (that locations players travel through? they are corners of that cobweb), with players traveling between them and trying to firstly cut off some legs (every one of them counts as separate enemy), which would move between locations when whole monstrosity rotates. After doing so, you would face the Weaver herself. In both cases, Atlach-Nacha actively changes locations at random.
  • Golden Ending:
    • Each campaign, by itself, has four possible endings; in only one of them, the team actually safely returns back home. When played in combined campaigns mode, one of the 16 possible versions of the epilogue can be achieved if both teams survive and reunite in Waking World (specifically, Epilogue 6).
    • It requires taking the right decision at certain interludes and achieving specific tasks, in both campaigns, but it's possible to not only survive, but utterly defeat Nyarlathotep, completely ruining his plans and banishing him from the Dreamlands. If you also combine it with the epilogue where both teams survive and reunite, this gives you one of the (very rare in Arkham Horror) actual happy endings.
  • Go Mad from the Revelation: In Epilogue 13, right after defeating Nyarlathotep, team A uses a secret passage to reach the Underworld in hopes of finding their lost friends... only to find out what happened to them, the Underworld and Earth. This realisation shatters their minds, driving them insane.
  • Happy Ending Override: Epilogue 5; a seemingly triumphant team A returns from the Dream Lands... only to instantly gets killed by the giant spiders, whom team B failed to stop.
  • The Heavy: Nyarlathotep is only one part of the Big Bad Ensemble, but it's due to his actions the whole plot started in the first place, when he (simultaneously), under disguise, sent both teams on their missions; while the first team walked into his trap all along, he was allied with the second team right until they reached their goal, after which he decided to backstab them.
  • Hidden Agenda Villain: It becomes obvious almost immediately that Nyarlathothep is involved in the whole Forced Sleep plot, but not what this plot is supposed to achieve. Unless the investigators are on the path to Golden Ending, they learn nothing about his true goals even after defeating him.
  • Hope Spot:
    • In Dark Side of the Moon, if you fail to escape the Moon, the lead investigator wakes up at the last moment, seemingly escaping both Moon-Beasts' trap and the Dream Lands, only to realise that this is another nightmare. Then they wake up from that, still in captivity, and things only go downhill from here.
    • In Epilogue 2, investigators from team B actually returns home triumphant... only to see that their friends from team A became possessed by Nyarlathotep and went completely insane. This is the fate which awaits all of humanity, very soon.
  • I Choose to Stay: One of the endings for The Dream Quest campaign involves investigators from team A voluntarily staying in the Dreamlands forever instead of returning back home. Four (out of possible 16) epilogues deal with the consequences of this decision:
    • In Epilogue 9, after team B failed their mission, the Dreamlands remain the last and only "safe" place after the "Waking World's" demise. The Black Cat, realising they can't understand his warnings, decides that it's better if they simply forget about their past lives altogether; "they would prefer this to the alternative".
    • In Epilogue 10, team B returns home, hoping to find their friends already awake, not knowing that they simply decided to stay. The Black Cat actually calls that a dick move, though immediately admits that it would do the same in their situation: the temptation was just that strong.
    • In Epilogue 11, the investigators from team A learn about their Team B friends' demise, and are only stopped from rushing on their search by the Black Cat who warns them that there's no chance to save them now.
    • In Epilogue 12, the two teams reunite in the Dream Lands. The Black Cat tries to convince them to return home, but in rather lazy manner; whether team B actually stay after this remains ambiguous.
  • Increasingly Lethal Enemy:
    • The "Alert" mechanic in Dark Side of the Moon; certain monsters, hazards and tasks becomes progressively harder the more "Alert" investigators accumulate, which, in turn, accumulates when certain negative events occur, like agenda advancement or failing certain Random Encounters. High "Alert" can and will slow down your progress, which, in turn, would help to accumulate even more "Alert". Having low "Alert" is mandatory to enter the White Ship and convince its Captain to smuggle you from the Moon (it's possible to argue with him with high "Alert" once you actually enter, but good luck passing a test with difficulty 5 or higher) and finish the scenario, but there are only limited opportunities to decrease it, with only one stable option towards the very end. Also, high "Alert" greatly increases the team's chances of being caught when attempting to escape from the Moon once the final agenda advances.
    • Pitch Spiders in "The Point of No Return" have their "swarm" value increasing depending on amount of damage tokens on scenario reference card, which can go pretty high if enough time progresses.
  • King Mook:
    • Spider of Leng gradually empowers the Spider Swarms by adding more and more "swarm" cards to them. No spiders around? Then it just spawns one in its location.
    • Ancient Zoog hides in some safe locations, where it keeps generating more and more "swarm" cards for the other zoogs (who're often already annoying to dispatch). It's also Elite, which makes it much harder to kill.
  • Life Imitates Art: In-Universe. This is what kickstarts the whole plot. When things described by Virgil starts occurring to other people, the team of investigators decides that there might be some truth behind this after all. One group enters the Dreamlands to investigate this, while the othjer stays in the "Waking World" to guard them and control the experiment.
  • Me's a Crowd: When playing in combined campaign mode, players soon notice (unless each campaign is played by separate group of people who keep interactions "in-character", which the campaign guide actually recommends for the best experience) that both campaigns have separate, self-aware versions of Randolph Carter. It's not a coincidence; both of them are actually Nyarlathotep in disguise, though his exact reason to stick around differs between campaigns.
  • Missed Him by That Much: Several epilogues involve two teams surviving... but failing to reunite afterwards:
    • In Epilogue 8, team A actually awakes... while team B remained trapped in the Dream Lands, eventually deciding to just settle there.
    • In Epilogue 14, team A travels into the Underworld to save their friends... just as team B found a way into the Enchanted Forest, through which they then escape back into the Waking World. It seems very unlikely for them to ever reunite now.
    • In Epilogue 16, team A travels into the Underworld, but, unfortunately, team B is currently in the Dream Lands — and they can't even safely travel back the same way. Their chances to meet each other after that are slim, at best.
  • The Mole:
    • In the Where the Gods Dwell, it turns out that "Randolph Carter" is actually Nyarlathotep in disguise, who tricked the investigators to visit Kadath, where they could easily be brainwashed for Nyarlathotep's plans.
    • In Weaver of the Cosmos, it turns out that "Randolph Carter" is actually Nyarlathotep in disguise, who only helped investigators just enough for them to reach Atlach-Nacha's domain, after which he almost immediately turns on them, and tries to cut out their only way to escape, ensuring they wouldn't interfere with his plans for Dreamlands. It wouldn't happen if he gets neutralised by The Unnameable beforehand, however.
  • Multiple Endings:
    • Both mini-campaigns have their own sets of possible endings (if not counting failure to stop the Big Bad):
      • In "The Dream Quest", once Nyarlathothep gets defeated, the investigators may choose to either awake and return home, or stay here forever.
      • In "The Web of Dreams", there are three (non-apocalyptic) endings. If investigators secured their way out of the Underworld, they would escape back to the Wake World. Otherwise, their fate depends on wether "Randolph Carter" was around to sabotage their escape route or not; if he was, they would be trapped in Atlach-Nacha's domain and go insane, otherwise they would stuck in the Dream Lands for unknown time, though the resolution leaves their success (or lack of thereof) to the players' interpretation. The endings becomes much more complex when playing in combined mode.
    • When playing in combined campaign mode, there're several possible versions of (rather short) epilogue; which one you receive depends on how both campaigns ends; each campaign by itself has four endings: failure and demise, triumph and return home, the ending where investigators never returns home, and (unique to this mode) one ending where investigators chose to travel to find their lost friends first. There are 16 possible combos in total. All epilogues are narrated by the Black Cat, wether you trusted it at the start or not. The epilogues don't take into account wether the Golden Ending of "The Dream Quest" was achieved or not.
  • Only the Worthy May Pass: In Beyond the Gates of Sleep, in order to enter the Dreamlands, investigators must pass Nasht and Kaman-Tah's trials.
  • Or Was It a Dream?: By the end of Waking Nightmare, whole hospital seems to return to its normal state... with exactly one exception: if doctor Maheswaran is dead, she wouldn't return, with no explanation.
  • Our Ghouls Are Creepier: Ghouls returns as common enemies in Thousand Shapes of Horror. Besides them, there are also similarly-looking ghasts.
  • Our Giants Are Bigger: Gugs appear in certain scenarios in both campaigns. They are big, four-armed beasts with vertical slit-like mouth. They kill and eat anything too weak to fight back and too slow to run, up to and including humans.
  • Permanently Missable Content:
    • Telling the Black Cat to go away would permanently disable the interaction between two groups, and by proxy cut off the Golden Ending.
    • Several epilogue variants depends on asking the Black Cat for specific information at specific time, and would become unaccessible if it gets told to go away, or if it concentrates on its own investigation.
    • The Black Cat's investigation starts if it notices that there are two versions of Randolph Carter existing simultaneously, which requires the team A to send it with information for the team B. It cuts off prematurely if any of scenarios gets failed, as the Cat either misses the crucial clues, or loses interest.
    • If the team B fails to obtain the Silver Key, there would be no Golden Ending, regardless of the other factors.
  • Power Nullifier: "Threads of Reality" treachery targets your asset with highest printed cost (excluding permanents and weaknesses), and blanks all its printed text, excluding forced abilities and traits. The sole way to deal with it is to discard an asset under your control.
  • Press X to Die:
    • In Beyond the Gates of Sleep, refusing the Black Cat's aid provides absolutely no benefits; conversely, it cuts off many alternate endings, and the campaign's Golden Ending.
    • In Search for Kadath, if you antagonised the cats by forcing your way into the temple (an already questionable idea by itself), do not return to Ulthar; it spawns hordes of hostile cats to hunt you, and there's no benefit from defeating them: they worth zero victory points, and cause lethal consequences later on. Even if you don't antagonise them, Ulthar provides only a small amount of clues, and nothing else. When playing in combined campaign mode, actually killing those cats when spawned would result in your investigator unceremoniously killed off right after campaign's ending.
  • Puppeteer Parasite: In Waking Nightmare, orderlies are controlled by spiders inside their bodies. They reveal themselves once infestation starts.
  • The Quest: Once Virgil gets found, the main goal of the campaign changes to find Unknown Kadath, where investigators can find answers to their questions about the Dreamlands, and find real evidences of Dreamlands existence.
    • The main point of The Search for Kadath is to identify Kadath's coordinates, by investigating several crucial locations of the Dreamlands. This eventually attracts Nyarlathotep's minions' attention and leads to Virgil's – and, depending on their performance, investigators' as well – capture.
    • In Where the Gods Dwell, the investigators finally reaches Kadath, one way or another, only to find it abandoned; the whole expedition turns out to be a trap set by Nyarlathotep.
  • Reality Bleed: Dream Land gradually merges with "Waking world". If process would not be stopped, consequences would be catastrophic, for both of worlds. Just to get an idea, how bad it would be, take setup of Waking Nightmare, and apply this to the whole world: this what would awaits us all if the Great Bridge ever gets completed.
  • Red Herring: The campaign log tracks whether the investigators "strayed from the path" in Beyond the Gates of Sleep, and never uses this in any way. There are no benefits from not straying, either; conversely, players miss most of the experience points this scenario provides if they abide the laws.
  • Rescue Arc: The whole point of Dark Side of the Moon is to rescue Virgil (and Randolph Carter, if he was abducted too), who was abducted by Corsairs in the previous scenario's resolution, from imprisonment in the city of Moon-Beasts.
  • Senseless Sacrifice: Epilogue 3; team B fight Atlach-Nacha, knowing that by cutting her off from the Waking World, they cut off their only way to escape, as well. Unfortunately, due to team A's failure, the other Eldritch Abomination reaches the Earth, meaning their sacrifice was for nothing. Even The Black Cat only partially succeeds at trying to assure itself that it doesn't care.
  • "Shaggy Dog" Story: Epilogue 4; team B succeeds at their mission, and manages to escape Atlach-Nacha's domain, but fails to reach the only escape way to the Waking World. The Black Cat assures them to not even bother, stating that Earth will soon become a living hell, because their friends failed to stop Nyarlathotep, who already started his invasion of Earth.
  • Shoot the Shaggy Dog: In Where the Gods Dwell, after surviving so many ordeals and finally arriving to Kadath, Virgil realises all of this was for nothing (with Kadath being long since abandoned, meaning he has no meaning to acquire any proof of his journeys), and suddenly gets confronted by Nyarlathotep, who kills him by stabbing him through his chest.
  • So Proud of You: In Epilogue 15, after team A travels into the Underworld to save their friends, who are still trapped there, the Black Cat breaks its usual cold demeanour and states that their bravery shows that not all is lost for humanity, and instead of the usually mean "so long, humans", asks the investigators to keep protecting the two worlds.
  • Spider People: Some of the most dangerous Atlach-Nacha's minions looks like weird hybrid of human and spider. This is also how Atlach-Nacha herself is pictured.
  • Spider Swarm: One of the weakest, but most numerous minions of Atlach-Nacha are actual swarms of small spiders; they are pathetically weak, but are very hard to run away from once they gather in massive numbers (which they do).
  • Suicide Mission: In Weaver of the Cosmos, if investigators becomes trapped in Atlach-Nacha's domain without any escape route due to mole's actions (which would happen before scenario even starts, if at all), their mission becomes this: they still can protect Humanity, but the only meaning to do so would also seal their escape route. There is'' a way to escape past that, but it requires preparing in advance.
  • Survivor Guilt: In Waking Nightmare, if Doctor Maheswaran dies (which happens only if you either takes her with you and then fails to protect her, or if the hospital gets overrun), lead investigator suffers mental trauma.
  • Temple of Doom: "The Temple of Unattainable Desires". King Kuranes specifically warns investigators that once they enter, they risk never leaving; while temple itself bears no particular danger, (at least in gameplay terms); it's home for some of more dangerous enemies in this scenario.
  • Title Drop:
    • The cycle's name, "Dream Eaters", is also the name of Where the Gods Dwell scenario's fifth act, which involves stopping Nyarlathotep from devouring the investigators' own dreams, enslaving them in the process.
    • The Web of Dreams campaign's final scenario's name, Weaver of the Cosmos, is also the name of one of scenario's acts.
  • True Final Boss: In Where the Gods Dwell, investigators face Nyarlathotep. While defeating him usually ends the scenario, if certain requirements were met (in both campaigns), right after, they face the true shape of Nyarlathotep, formed from all previously defeated Nyarlathoteps' forms. On the bright side, he is no longer "hidden", making him vulnerable to conventional attacks. It forces them to fight a very challenging opponent without adding any more time (and failing here would still fail the entire campaign), but if they succeed, they don't merely escape with their lives, but banish him for real.
  • Two Lines, No Waiting: The expansion was designed in a way which allows you to either play the two stories separately, or combine them together into one big campaign (plus epilogues) which alternates between two storylines, occasionally allowing investigators to interact with each other. If you play the campaigns together, each part has their own separate campaign log, chaos bag and pool of available investigators; the game refers to two teams by marking them with letters "A" ("The Dream Quest") and "B" ("The Web of Dreams"). Despite being "separated", during interludes the two teams contact each other and their interactions can alter the chaos bag for both campaigns; certain events, once they occur in one campaign, affect both, and the only way to achieve the Golden Ending is to fulfil certain conditions in both campaigns.
  • Video Game Cruelty Punishment: Thought that "law of Ulthar" (no one may kill a cat and live) was merely flavour text? Wrong. Force your way into the temple in The Search for Kadath, and cats (giant, angry, sapient and really dangerous cats, not your common stray cats) will be very angry at you. Make a mistake of returning to Ulthar afterwards to collect lost clues there, and they start hunting for you, and would refuse to aid you in subsequent scenarios. It becomes even worse in combined campaign mode, where it can have outright lethal consequences.
  • Void Between the Worlds: Atlach-Nacha's domain is enormous abyss of emptiness between worlds; she uses her mysterious cobweb to link worlds by creating "bridges".
  • Violation of Common Sense: You are warned to not stray from the path, but besides the lone gug (whom you may or may not encounter) and one of the treacheries which only targets those in the woods, there are no punishments for doing so; in fact, breaking the rules and going adventuring is you main source of experience in this scenario. This likely was the entire point: only those who dare can reach Unknown Kadath.
  • That Was Not a Dream: In the end of Waking Nightmare, the last doubts that this night's events really happened gets shattered by strange patient you met in St. Mary's Hospital that night... Randolph Carter.
  • While Rome Burns: Epilogue 9; after successfully escaping Nyarlathotep's grasp, the investigators decide to, instead of returning home, stay in the Dreamlands to live a wondrous new life. The Black Cat calls them out on their naivety, reminding them that their bodies are still alive in the Waking World... and that other predators are already close.
  • You Are Already Dead:
    • In Weaver of the Cosmos, even in the endings where Atlach-Nacha is stopped, investigators themselves may still die, depending on wether they have an escape route or not. There're several ways to secure it, but all of them requires special preparations, which you may easily miss on the first try.
    • If you antagonise the cats of Ulthar and then kill any (spectacularly bad idea), then, once campaign ends, just after the relevant epilogue has been read, your investigator gets swarmed by vengeful cats and killed. The end.
  • You Can't Thwart Stage One: In The Search for Kadath, no matter the outcome, Virgil will get captured, either together with the other investigators, or when he briefly separates from them, forcing investigators to go to rescue him on the Moon.
  • You Dirty Rat!: In A Thousand Shapes of Horror, rat swarms return, this time combined with "Swarm" mechanic, meaning there are even more of them. This still makes little to address their low combat stats, though.
  • You Have Outlived Your Usefulness:
  • Your Soul Is Mine!: Nyarlathotep consuming his victims' dreams is heavily implied to have effects similar to actually consuming their souls, at least partially. If investigators fails to stop him, this happens to them, too.
  • Zerg Rush: The new "Swarm" mechanic. Each "swarm card" on a "swarm" enemy means an individual copy of this enemy, allowing them to amass more monsters than usual; fortunately, they can't separate from each other, and can be fought all at once, since any excessive damage transfers to another copy.

     The Innsmouth Conspiracy tropes 
  • Adaptational Backstory Change: Backstory behind the hybrids was changed to remove the infamous crossbreeding between the humans and the Deep Ones. A new explanation? The cursed artifacts.
  • Amnesiac Hero: Investigators have no memories of how they got there, and what happened before. Alongside their main goal, investigators are also trying to restore these memories, which, besides narrative purpose, also rewards players with various benefits.
  • Berserk Button: Killing the young Deep Ones in A Light in the Fog would alert the other Deep Ones to your position, and make them drop whatever they're doing and rush to kill you.
  • Boss in Mook Clothing: Aquatic Abomination has more health than some investigators (and backs it up with high Fight stat), hits only slightly weaker than most bosses, and can quickly catch up with running investigators by going through fully flooded locations. Despite all this, it's a part of normal encounter deck, and lacks either Elite trait or victory points.
  • The Cavalry: In case the investigators fails to escape The Pit of Despair in time, they would be saved by a mysterious woman before they drown completely. She introduces herself as Elina Harper.
  • Colour-Coded for Your Convenience: Campaign guide marks all flashback scenarios with distinct green colour, making it easier to distinguish them from the events happening in the present.
  • Drowning Pit:
    • The Pit of Despair happens entirely within various caves, often partially or entirely flooded. As the scenario goes, more and more caves becomes flooded, with investigators having the less and less place to catch for air. The goal is to find a way to escape from the caves before they get filled completely. Failure to escape in time would take a heavy toll on their health, causing some physical trauma to everyone, but before they could actually drown, the investigators would be rescued by Elina Harper in the last moment.
    • The later part of A Light in the Fog takes place in the deep caves under the Falcon Point lighthouse, which slowly get filled with water. This time, there's no one to save the investigators if they fail; they would drown.
  • Everyone Is a Suspect: The Vanishing of Elina Harper has the investigators trying to find out who has abducted agent Elina Harper, and where she's kept, with six possible variants for both the abductor (basically, every named character amongst the locals save for a bus driver) and for the hideout. Since there's only one true abductor and only one true hideout, and scenario ends on a failure immediately if investigators fails to identify at least one of the two, they must investigate and reduce the amount of suspects as much as possible before making an accusation. It helps that the true suspect/hideout would never be in the leads deck, meaning that the faster players may run through that deck, the faster they would run out of Red Herrings.
  • Evil All Along: The agents Dawson and Harper were not on the mission to investigate the criminal activity, they were after the Deep Ones' treasures all along, and were prepared to terminate their allies if they wouldn't cooperate. The flashback to that revelation is even called "A stinging betrayal". In fact, the "Innsmouth Conspiracy" refers to their mission just as much as to the Deep Ones.
  • Fish People: The Deep Ones, human/fish humanoids from the depths, returns, this time as the main focus of campaign. They comes in all forms, sizes and colours, and all of them are universally hostile to the investigators.
  • Gimmick Level:
    • In Too Deep has investigators dealing with barricades placed on the streets of Innsmouth, blocking their way through. There're the ways to break them, but as scenario goes on, new ones may emerge.
    • Two scenarios in a row are build entirely around using vehicles:
      • Devil Reef is entirely build around traveling between various sea locations on your boat, only going out to dive into the underwater tunnels to search for clues and keys. While it's possible to just swim between them on your own, it would consume an entire turn, so it's not efficient.
      • Horror in High Gear is build around investigators traveling on their cars, while trying to run away from pursuing Order's hitmen. Instead of the normal map, it has the road which randomly builds on the go, with investigators needing to actually scouting their way ahead or risk running into something nasty — or even off the cliff.
  • Go Back to the Source: Flashback scenarios starts in Innsmouth, and later visits the Devil Reef, then, after a failed attempt to investigate the Esoteric Order's HQ, ends with investigators being captured and sent to the guy named Oceiros Marsh, the lighthouse keeper. The actual investigation starts with revisiting Innsmouth, and ends with going to the Devil Reef, or, rather, under it, with Oceiros' lighthouse being the middle point.
  • The Heavy: Oceiros Marsh isn't a main antagonist, but he's the most active one, being directly behind Agent Dawson's death, and the investigators being captured and losing their memories. He's (chronologically) the penultimate threat the investigators face before confronting the Order's gods in the end of campaign.
  • Here We Go Again!: If investigators collects all fourteen flashbacks, after finishing the campaign they would see the last, fifteenth one — which would reveal that there are much, much more underwater cities than just this one, and that the Deep Ones would return one day.
  • How We Got Here: While the campaign mostly follows a linear story, several scenarios occurs in the past, and tells the story how investigators even got in the troubles with the Order, and lost their memories.
    • The Pit of Despair ends with investigators being saved by a mysterious woman who introduces herself as Elina Harper. Since the investigators can't remember who she is, she tells them that their involvement in the whole plot started when her boss, agent Thomas Dawson, hired them to find her after she disappeared on a mission at Innsmouth. The Vanishing of Elina Harper is essentially retelling on how this mission went, and what got the Order on investigators' tail. Elina, of course, would survive the mission regardless of outcome, though she wouldn't join the team unless saved here (and would be seriously injured without their help).
    • Devil's Reef tells how investigators even came up with idea to investigate the Order further.
    • The Lair o Dagon ends with investigators being captured and thrown into the pit (losing their memories due to head trauma), while Thomas Dawson gets killed.
  • The Juggernaut: In In Too Deep, the Innsmouth Shoggoth ignores the barriers between locations, breaking right through them.
  • Lock and Key Puzzle: This campaign (re)introduces the keys, previously used in one of The Circle Undone scenarios, only this time using the special tokens instead of reusing the Chaos tokens. Depending on scenario, exact function (and even the look, which scenario's intro always describes) may vary greatly; some are crucial for the main goal's advancement, others unlocks flashbacks or provides other benefits.
  • Luck Manipulation Mechanic: The new blessed/cursed tokens. They works similarly to the chaos tokens in that you draw them and they modify your total score during a skill check (increasing or reducing it, respectively), though they wouldn't replace other tokens by themselves, only modify the score. After any such token is drawn, it must be removed from the pool, until something adds it back again. All classes gains new cards which works with this mechanics, while one of newly-introduced investigators, Sister Mary, can interact with it directly.
  • Multiple Endings: In the final scenario, Into the Maelstrom, the main goal is to stop the ritual which floods the Earth. If the investigators triggers a flashback about the agents' true mission (steal the treasures of the Deep Ones), they may agree to help Elina Harper in doing so — or decide to just collapse the lair along with all its treasures, with agent Harper likely perishing, as she refuses to evacuate without completing her mission; either option, if fulfilled, would be reflected in the ending. Both the main objective and the additional tasks are treated as separate act cards, and it's only mandatory to finish either one of them before leaving, however if the ritual was not stopped (the original task), this would result in a massive damage to the planet (albeit the Deep Ones seemingly wouldn't be able to escalate it to apocalypse), and "reward" the investigators with (otherwise avoidable) two points of mental trauma. The narrative directly questions wether it has worth it.
  • Mystery Episode: Entire point of The Vanishing of Elina Harper is to identify who abducted the agent Elina Harper, and where she's kept captive, then rescue her.
  • Non Standard Game Over:
    • In The Vanishing of Elina Harper, investigators must find the true culprit behind agent Harper's disappearance, and where she's held captive. Guessing both the true abductor and the true hideout allows them to proceed further unthreatened, while mistaking either of them causes massive angry mob going after their blood. If they mistake both, however, scenario ends immediately, and investigators are forced to resign before even going to the final part. Allowing the second agenda to advance before investigators have info they need leads to the same outcome.
    • In A Light in the Fog, if investigators reach the point when the caves under the lighthouse would get sealed and start actively filling up with water, and fail to escape in time, they would either drown or get killed by the Deep Ones, ending campaign prematurely.
  • Oxygen Meter: Several scenarios, namely The Pit of Despair, Devil Reef and The Lair of Dagon, have the drowning mechanic; if investigator ends their turn in the fully-drowned location, they start grasping for air, and have until the end of the next turn to reach less drowned location, or suffer massive direct damage due to asphyxia (enough to kill less durable investigator in one hit, and finish off anyone else if it repeats).
  • Permanently Missable Content:
    • Every flashback can be obtained only during specific scenario and only if specific conditions are met. The very last one unlocks in the epilogue, if the fourteen other flashbacks were unlocked before.
    • Some flashbacks, if not obtained, would cut off certain plot elements:
      • If the investigators don't remember killing off the Horror of the Devil Reef, once the Devil Reef scenario comes, they wouldn't be able to permanently kill it, as it's a prequel scenario.
      • If investigators don't retrieve the relics from the Devil Reef, they wouldn't be able to later take them from the lighthouse, as the reason why they ended up on the lighthouse is because investigators were caught with them.
      • If investigators have no memories of Agent Harper's abductor escaping the prison, said abductor wouldn't show up later.
  • Posthumous Character: Thomas Dawson is already dead by the start of campaign (him being dead is amongst the first things the investigators remembers), and only appears in flashback scenarios. The last of them, The Lair of Dagon, shows how exactly he was killed.
  • Punch-Clock Hero: Joe Sargeant in In Too Deep is the sole local to be on investigators' side... because they promise him money.
  • Religion of Evil: Cultists from the Esoteric Order of Dagon are recurring antagonists in this campaign. Penultimate scenario, The Lair of Dagon, even involves visiting their headquarters.
  • Rising Water, Rising Tension: Many campaign scenario uses new flood mechanic, which allows to fully or partially flood specific locations, which often causes serious troubles for investigators. In setting where your enemies are the Deep Ones and other monsters from the deep, the depth equals death...
    • The Pit of Despair is all about finding a way out of the titular pit before everyone drowns in the rising tide. As flood level increases, the investigators have less and less place to grasp for fresh air...
    • In In Too Deep, Innsmouth gradually gets consumed by the sea. With each completed agenda, the flood level constantly goes up, with more and more locations becoming consumed, penalties for staying in flooded locations grows harsher and harsher, and even the Doom threshold becomes smaller and smaller (it starts at 6 for the first one, and is merely 3 for the fourth one), as if it tries to make the players feel the same panic as their characters.
    • In A Light in the Fog, the later part of scenario takes place in the caves under the lighthouse, which slowly, but surely gets consumed by the rising tide. Investigators must find a way to escape before the tide consumes them all. Unlike the previous scenarios with such gimmick, this time around it's "do or die" situation: failure to escape in time would result in them all being drowned to death or killed by the Deep Ones.
  • Timed Mission:
    • The Vanishing of Elina Harper has investigators on a time limit (until the end of the second agenda) to find the true abductor and where Elina Harper is kept captive. If they succeeds in at least one of the goals, scenario continues with them going on the rescue, otherwise, it ends prematurely.
    • A Light in the Fog has several combinations of paired agenda/act cards, where the plot would progress further regardless of wether the investigators succeeds or not, but failing to achieve the current goal in time results in investigators being at disadvantage during the next stage. The doom tokens persists throughout agendas (they just gain higher doom threshold), so the total time limit for a scenario is the same regardless of how the mission goes.
  • Uncertain Doom: If investigators chose not to side with Elina Harper in Into the Maelstrom, she would try to finish her mission by herself. In the end, after successfully escaping the underwater city, investigators would wonder wether she did this after all or not, since she never came out.
  • Underwater Ruins: The ancient ruins of the unknown civilisation are presented in the Devil Reef scenario, being the source of some ancient relics investigators are after.
  • Video Game Cruelty Punishment: Normally, in The Vanishing of Elina Harper, investigators are supposed to "parley" with the citizens of Innsmouth in order to obtain some clues from them (the true culprit would never be amongst those in the deck, so other five suspects would always be innocent, as much as it applies to Innsmouth). If the players attacks them anyway, they would later show up in In Too Deep as your enemies, slowing down your progress in the already time-restrained scenario even further.
  • You Dirty Rat!: Caves in The Pit of Despair are heavily infested with rats, who attacks anything resembling food on sight.
  • You Wake Up in a Room: The Pit of Despair starts with investigators awakening in some unknown cave which slowly fills up with water, with no memories how they got there. Entire goal of scenario is to find a way to escape.

     To the Edge of the Earth tropes 
  • Ambiguously Gay: It's highly implied that Ellsworth and Claypool are closer than just friends (and Kensler's comment on Claypool being "an... associate of Ellsworth's" semi-confirms this), but they never tells so directly, you have to pay attention to what they say, and read between the lines. Initially, they are rather cold to each other, but slowly warms up if they live for long enough. If they survive to the epilogue, they would plan to take a long vacation on the some remote (but preferably, this time marked on the map) place, for just two of them.
  • Animalistic Abomination: The creepy giant albino penguins returns. They aren't aggressive by default, but slows down the investigators as long as they stay alive.
  • Anyone Can Die: None of the Companions are safe. One of them dies at random at the start of campaign, and the rest may die either if the investigator whom they follow or themselves gets defeated, or if certain story events happens. In general, it's nearly impossible to prevent at least two more deaths.
  • Arbitrary Headcount Limit: One investigator may be followed by one Partner; no exceptions. The rests stays offscreen, but out of danger... most of the time.
  • Big Bad: The Nameless Madness is the Eldritch Abomination in the heart of Elder Things' old city, deep below the surface, which is the source of miasma and the force which tries to brainwash the intruders — or, failing that, kill — and escape its prison. It's even implied (and presumed in-universe) that it wants for expedition to discover it, and everything, starting from the crash, was orchestrated for that end. However, the true nature of the being wouldn't be revealed until the end, and even that would only happen if the team's biologist, Dr Kensler, lives up to that point and finish her research.
  • The Big Guy: Cookie is the team's dedicated fighter, with the investigator-grade health, and ability to provide the investigator whom he follows with massive boost to Combat stat. The reason for this is that he's the World War One veteran. However, he has only a single point of Sanity, meaning that the first horror would be his last; even his Resolute version gains increase to Health, not Sanity. This may potentially drop him straight into Glass Cannon territory, depending on the encounter deck composition.
  • Black Comedy Animal Cruelty: There's an achievement for killing two Giant Albino Penguins simultaneously with a single use of Dynamite asset. The name of it? "Wuk Wuk Boom".
  • Blob Monster:
    • Majority or your enemies looks like the formless mass of luminescent hungry goo, often with mind-breaking psychic powers, including Big Bad.
    • The later scenarios have the infamous shoggoths amongst the enemies, which comes in several variations. They may or may not be related to the Big Bad, given the similarities and plot revelations.
  • Bold Explorer: Both Claypool and Ellsworth are explorers, who are here to assist the scientists in their research mission. Specifically, Claypool assists in preparing for the journey, so the team would face a lot more troubles if he dies, while Ellsworth scouts the way ahead and easies the advancement. Also, both of them have some expeditions going bad as their worst memories still haunting them. Their final temptation would be related to that as well.
  • Canine Companion: Eliyah Ashevak is always accompanied by his faithful dog Anyu. If her owner dies, Anyu may follow the investigators instead. There's also a special achievements if you put in place at least five dogs at once, including Anyu.
  • Can't Spit It Out: Amy Kensler was never able to propose to Mala Sinha, which always caused her huge stress (even her Memory boss in Fatal Mirage is related to this). If both survives to the end, she would finally gather enough courage to invite her on a date, only for Mala to say "yes" immediately and reveal that she has waited for her to finally make a first step.
  • The Cavalry: If the investigators successfully escapes the facility, they would be rescued as the help arrives on the third (and final) plane.
  • Crazy-Prepared:
    • Takada's main contribution to the team, aside from one point halfway into campaign, is to supply the team with huge amount of resources, which is explained by her keeping the eye on Expedition's supplies (as self-proclaimed quartermaster). As "resources" are universal, well, resources, it's safe to assume that she keeps around everything the team may need and distributes it as needed. If she dies, the investigators would take her personal stash rather than anything else. If she dies, her stash may be taken as her "memento".
    • If Ellsworth dies, when checking his belongings, the investigators would comment on him being equipped as if he tried to prepare for an apocalypse.
  • Earn Your Happy Ending: Excluding Eliyah Ashevak (who's the loner by nature), the rest of the Partners, assuming they make it that far, would spread into couples, with special scenes if two specific Partners both survives:
    • If Amy Kensler and Mala Sinha both survives, Kensler would finally gather enough courage to invite Sinha on a date, with Sinha agreeing and revealing that she was aware all along.
    • If Avery Claypool and Roald Ellsworth both survives, they would plan a vacation in some remote warm place for just two of them. Long vacation.
    • If Professor Dyer and Danforth both survives, they would continue their researches together, with Danforth seemingly finally recovering from the traumas caused by first expedition.
    • If James "Cookie" Fredericks and Takada Hiroko both survives, they would become friends and start preparing for the mission to find Takada's father and either rescue him, or finally confirm his fate.
  • Easy Exp: Merely keeping Cookie alive and talking to him between scenarios provides one of the investigators with a free experience point.
  • Death Glare:
    • If Eliyah dies in the crash, when Anyu insists on staying with the corpse of her owner, Cookie suggests to just leave "the damn dog" behind. The rests looks on him so angrily, he shuts up immediately.
    • If Mala dies in the crash, Cookie says that she "knew the risks", to which Dr Kensler (who was in love with her, but unable to propose) would give him a glare than "can freeze tears". This shuts up not just him, but the rest of the team too.
  • Demolitions Expert: At the start of City of the Elder Things, the way forward would collapse. If Cookie is still alive, he may use the Dynamite to blow it up. But if either Cookie is dead (no one else knows how to use it), or the Dynamite wasn't recovered (or was lost), the investigators would be forced to search for another way and suffer from cold (and "earn" additional frost token).
  • Dwindling Party: The Expedition team. There are nine of them, but one dies in the crash at the very start, at random. More of them may die at later points in the campaign: there are three specific points when one of them dies at random unless specific conditions are met; also, whenever an investigator gets defeated, the Partner who follows them dies.
  • Eldritch Abomination: The Nameless Madness is the enourmous shoggoth-like entity with mind-control powers and unknown, but certainly malevolent goals.
  • The End... Or Is It?:
    • If Dr Kensler succeeds at her plan, she would seal the Nameless Madness within herself, realising that it can't be permanently killed as it's not alive to begin with. However, to do so, she's forced to "make a deal with it" (as much as it applies to quasi-sentient being), and now it uses her as a host — and it knows all our desire, hopes and fears... For now, it's contained, but who knows for how long it would last?
    • If the Myst Pylons gets collapsed, but Dr Kensler, for any reason, doesn't seal it inside herself (due to either not finishing research, or not surviving until then), investigators and their followers escapes with their lives, but wonders wether it was enough to contain the beast; also, there's an issue with the Elder Things still being alive...
    • If investigators fails to collapse the Myst Pylons in time, the facility wouldn't be properly destroyed, leaving a great chance that the entity would escape. And who knows wether the entity is limited to Antarctica, or one day it would return to claim the world? Even the campaign guide itself is unsure wether it's even the "victory", and writes the usual "the investigators win the campaign" with a question mark.
  • Escape Sequence: Once you deal with the Myst Pylons (or run out of time to do so), the last objective remains — run away from the pursuing Nameless Madness before it overwhelms investigators. If all investigators dies there, it's still a game over.
  • Evil Is Not a Toy: The Elder Things have discovered that in this part of the world, it's possible to contact another dimension, which they tried to exploit to fuel their civilisation. They have learned the hard way that it was a very bad idea, as the force living there has a mind of its own, and has its own motives. Now they are all but entirely went extinct.
  • Expert Consultant:
    • Dyer and Danforth are the people who know the most about the Elder Things and Shoggoths. The most common assistance they provide is to remove Tekeli-li cards from investigators' decks (Danforth does that mid-game, Dyer — between scenarios), which are mainly associated with the local horrors.
    • Claypool's main role in the team is to help with preparations before continuing the adventure. Without his advices, the team would suffer from the harsh conditions of Antarctica, which would result in gaining more and more frost tokens out of nowhere, or even traumas. And during scenarios, he significantly diminishes the threat from frost tokens.
    • Ellsworth, an experienced researcher, not only helps with scouting the way ahead (allowing for easier start), but also with dangerous locations and treacheries which targets them, which often may be very nasty.
  • Fire-Forged Friends:
    • Claypool and Ellsworth used to be friends (or perhaps closer than just friends, it's unclear), but their friendship took a heavy hit sometimes prior to expedition, to the point that they barely can stand each other now. If they both survives to the epilogue, they would reforge their friendship.
    • Cookie and Takada are almost openly hostile to each other at first. If they survives to the epilogue, they would develop into Vitriolic Best Buds who're now planning a mission on their own to find Takada's Missing Dad.
  • Golden Ending: Allowing Amy Kensler to finish her research, and then successfully collapsing the Myst Pylons, leads to her staying behind to contain the Nameless Madness within herself. It's a Bittersweet Ending at best, but it's the only ending where it's certain that humanity would have at least some time before the entity returns. From the purely gameplay terms, it's the only ending where investigators don't earn traumas.
  • Hearing Voices: If Dyer is alive by the start of the City of the Elder Things, he would warn about the voices one may hear within the City, and tell not to listen to them. If he's not, then investigators would start suffering from them, and slowly falling for their influence, gaining the special weakness, "Possessed".
  • Heart Is an Awesome Power:
    • Eliyah Ashevak provides no help outside of scenarios (where he boosts investigators' Agility) besides just talking to investigators, but that talking helps to cure mental traumas (something which is normally impossible), and can heal horror from the other Partners; he's just that great at comforting people.
    • Takada Hiroko provides some help before To the Forbidden Peaks by just singing. Without her around, the sheer silence alone would cause either additional frost token, or a mental trauma to all investigators, and it's not always clear which is worse.
  • Hero Killer: The Terror from the Stars directly or indirectly causes at least one death amongst the Expedition members:
    • Terror from the Stars is the monster which caused the crash, and thus the first death. It would attack the investigators directly later in the first scenario.
    • It shows up during the mountain climb in To the Forbidden Peaks, and, unless specific conditions are met, kills another random Partner, even if they don't follow the investigator.
  • Increasingly Lethal Enemy: The Nameless Madness consists of fifteen parts, each deals one point of damage and horror. While they can't be destroyed, its parts can be exhausted. It doesn't enter the play in full force, and rather grows gradually.
    • During the first stage of scenario, only one part enters play. But as the scenario goes on, more and more of them enters play, slowly covering the arena and making it hard to avoid.
    • During the Escape Sequence, only several parts of the Nameless Horror enters play at once, but they gain "Hunter" keyword, meaning that this time they would actively pursuit the investigators and would be able to quickly accumulate the damage and horror. As the time goes on, the rest slowly joins in, eventually making it able to quickly wipe out the investigators.
  • It's All My Fault:
    • If Dyer dies in the crash, Danforth says that it's his fault that this expedition even started. Dr Kensler insists that it's her fault instead, as she was the one who dismissed Dyer's concerns about the shape in the sky, indirectly causing the crash. Dyer reacts in the same way if it's Danforth who dies in the crash instead.
    • Professor William Dyer still blames himself for the fate of the previous expedition. In Fatal Mirage, he may face that memory's manifestation and overcome the sense of guilt. Regardless of wether he faces his fears or not, if he lives to The Heart of Madness, he would change his mind about the previous expedition and wonder wether he and Danforth have fled too soon and missed a chance to understand what's this thing and how to stop it.
  • Jerk with a Heart of Gold: Despite being grumpy and sometimes outright rude, Cookie cares about his teammates, and they know it, which would be shown if he lives for long enough. If he perishes in the crash, the survivors would acknowledge it right away:
    Claypool: He was a good man.
    Ellsworth: Despite his many attempts to fool us otherwise.
  • Loyalty Mission: Fatal Mirage allows to help surviving Partners to face and defeat their horrors. If they succeed, they become "Resolute", which improves their survivability and their abilities, as well as prevents their possible Plotline Deaths. It may be played after every scenario, but only gets unlocked if at least three Partners have died prior to this point (including the one who dies in the crash), and may be played more than once (giving slightly less time on each repeat).
  • Master of Illusion: Miasma (the quasi-alive black mass which forms all Eidolons and, of course, the Nameless Madness) may cause people's minds to be trapped in the illusions, to either brainwash them — or to torture them with their worst memories.
    • Entire point of Fatal Mirage is to help the Partners to deal with their horrors, which would manifest as material and quite dangerous thanks to miasma.
    • The Partner who suffers from miasma in the City of the Elder Things falls into irreversible coma, still alive, but trapped within their mind. There's a special scene if it happens to Danforth.
    • The Nameless Madness would make the last ditch attempt to hurt at least some of he Partners halfway into the first part of The Heart of Madness (assuming it wasn't skipped), using their memories against them (those who already defeated their "demons" are immune, and wouldn't be targeted). If there's a friend ready to save them (different one for each Partner), they would survive, otherwise they would perish. Unlike the previous times, when the Nameless Madness tried to torture them, this time ti would trick them by showing some (fake) happy end to their story.
  • The Medic: Dr Mala Sinha is the official team medic, who not only may heal the investigators and their Allies, but the other Partners as well, including curing physical traumas during the interludes, which is normally impossible. She also keeps the team safe; without her, by the time of City of the Elder Things, investigators would start suffering from frostbites.
  • Missing Dad: Takada Hiroko had lost her father, a pilot, when she was still a child. He went on the mission, but never made it back.
  • Mountain Man: Eliyah Ashevak is the experienced hunter from Alaska, and acts as the team's dog handler.
  • Multiple Endings: Barring outright Game Over, the campaign has three endings, each one going progressively worse (and earning more traumas for the investigators). If the players fails to collapse the Myst Pylons, they would be forced to flee and leave the facility as is, with no ways to ensure that the Nameless Madness wouldn't escape later. If they do collapse the Pylons, ending is determined by Dr Kensler being alive and finishing her research: if both are fulfilled, the Golden Ending plays, where she stays to seal the entity inside herself, otherwise, the "normal" ending plays.
  • Non Standard Game Over: In the first part of The Heard of Madness, if two or more activated seals (controlled by investigators) ever ends up in the same location, it would cause global catastrophe and wipe out all life on the Earth, including investigators, and ending campaign in a failure.
  • Permadeath: If the Partner gets killed by a story effect or defeated, they are gone for the rest of campaign; there's no way to bring them back.
  • Permanently Missable Content:
    • Any Partners not recovered during the second part of Ice and Death are gone.
    • Supplies assets must be recovered in any of the three parts of Ice and Death, and then carried to the summit during To the Forbidden Peaks scenario. If investigators lose them in the mountains or never recover, they are lost forever.
    • Any seals not recovered in the first part of The Heart of Madness or lost due to investigator carrying them being defeated are gone, and may not be recovered.
  • Plotline Death: Normally, Partners dies if they runs out of Stamina or Sanity, but at several points in campaign, they may die during interludes:
    • One Partner always dies in the plane crash at the start of campaign; which one would perish is randomised. There's no way to save them.
    • Halfway though To The Forbidden Peaks and The City of Elder Things, one random non-Resolute Partner would die (killed by monster or put into coma by miasma).
    • Halfway through the first part of The Heart of Madness, one random non-Resolute Partner would be picked as the target by the Nameless Madness. This time, they can be saved if another specific Partner is still alive.
  • The Power of Friendship: When the Nameless Madness tries to use its illusion to kill one of the Partners, their friend (if they are still alive) would intervene and stop them at the last moment:
    • Dr Amy Kensler would be tricked by the illusion of the world where she did propose to Mala, and she reciprocated. If Mala Sinha is present, she would stop her friend at the last moment and avert her gaze, allowing Kensler to calm down.
    • Danforth would see the horror which nearly drew him insane before, but now it looks beautiful, and gently invites him, as if it waited for him all this time... Professor Dyer, if alive, would warn him what this is just an illusion, and Danforth would use his last powers to avert his gaze, only to fall into his mentor's arms and faint.
    • Professor William Dyer would be trapped in the illusion where Lake actually convinced him to stop the first expedition, and avert all the horrors... but Dr Kensler, if she's here, would remind him that Lake is dead — they attended his funeral together. Dyer would remember it, in details, and snap out of illusion.
    • Avery Claypool would be tricked by the promise of the treasure he may discover, but he wouldn't fall for it if Ellsworth is alive to tell him that he has something much more valuable here.
    • Takada Hiroko would be shown the illusion of her father still alive. If Eliyah Asherak is still alive, he would send Anyu to just jump on Takada, forcing her to break the visual contact with the entity.
    • Eliyah Ashevak would be convinced that the rest of the people who perished on that faithful hunt are still alive and waiting for him, ignoring Anyu's attempt to stop him. However, if Claypool is here, he would remind him that they're gone, and Anyu — the only survivor besides him — is here, and needs him. This brings him back to reason.
    • If Roald Ellsworth falls for the illusion — the opportunity to make the discovery of his life — Cookie, if he's here, would just slap him hard enough to break him away from the deception.
    • Dr Mala Sinha would be deceived the image of the world without death and suffering. Danforth may bring her back to senses by quoting Poe, which would distract her and break the illusion.
    • James "Cookie" Fredericks would go back to the day of that battle on the Ottoman front, only this time, lieutenant and the rest of their platoon are still alive. Takada may fire Cookie's own gun under his ear to distract him — and make him realise that it was an illusion.
  • Puzzle Boss: The Nameless Madness can't be damaged, only slowed down. The actual objective is to collapse its lair, and run.
  • Recurring Boss: Terror of the Stars shows up as a Mini-Boss in Ice and Death (first part only), To the Forbidden Peaks and one of the variants of City of the Elder Things, causing troubles for the investigators and spreading death and horror.
  • Rest-and-Resupply Stop:
    • Ice and Death has three parts, with "checkpoints" between them; those checkpoints are explicitly the investigators stopping at the camp to rest and resupply.
    • Scenarios are separated by interludes which involves the team stopping at the camp to rest, patch themselves up and prepare to continue the journey.
  • Required Party Member:
    • If certain Partner goes missing during the second part of Ice and Death, another Partner would insist on participating in the rescue party, if they're present. Danforth would always insist on going for Dyer, Kensler would go for Sinha, Claypool would go for Ellsworth, and Cookie would go for Takada.
    • Inverted with Amy Kensler; on the path to the Golden Ending, she becomes unavailable as the Partner option in The Heart of Madness. This doesn't make her immune to being picked as the Nameless Madness' last ditch attempt to harm the expedition.
  • Rousing Speech: If Amy Kensler survives up to the start of The Heart of Madness, she would give the team the speech which would give them resolve to continue fighting. Otherwise, they would proceed further, nearly desperate and exhausted, and investigators would suffer from mental trauma.
  • Run or Die: Once the Nameless Madness starts pursuing you, your only option (and the main objective) is to run. You can attack it to slow it down, but you can never fully stop it. If all investigators dies there, the campaign still ends in failure.
  • Safety in Indifference: After losing her first patient, Dr Sinha realised that no matter how hard she tries, there would be more, so the only solution is to not form attachments to them. This is the reason why she keeps cold to the investigators as well. This gets revealed if she deals with her Memory in Fatal Mirage.
  • Sanity Slippage: This expedition takes the heavy toll on all Partners, who clearly becomes more nervous as the campaign goes on (which may be traced if the players keep conversing with them between scenarios), but the one who takes it worst is Danforth, who spent some time in the clinic recovering from the previous expedition, and now is on the brink of insanity again. By the time of The Heart of Madness, he keeps mumbling that "it awaits [him]".
  • The Scapegoat: If Claypool dies in the crash, Cookie blames his death on Takada (who's the one to build the plane), who "build this damned plane as a deathtrap". The others are forced to calm him down.
  • Sequel Episode: At the Mountains of Madness has ended with another expedition to Antarctica being prepared. This campaign deals with its consequences.
  • Sidequest:
    • Second part of Ice and Death is entirely build around attempts to retrieve the Expedition members who went missing during the night and went insane. It's up to the players to either risk and go rescue them, or let them perish. The better location for a camp was picked in the previous scenario (measured by the "shelter" value), the less people would go missing, down to and including none, which skips the scenario automatically. If scenario gets skipped manually (or the time runs out), all non-rescued Partners dies.
    • Second part of Ice and Death involves the monsters catching up with the camp and trying to attack the investigators. Fighting them isn't necessary, but gives some more time to retrieve the missing story assets (which would be useful later), and allows to earn additional experience.
    • The first part of The Heart of Madness isn't mandatory to finish the campaign, the players may skip directly to the second part, but it allows to obtain the Seals, which would significantly increase the chances of successfully destroying Myst tokens.
  • Shell-Shocked Veteran: Cookie is a World War One veteran, and his worst memory is the memory of one faithful battle against the Germans on the Ottoman front, where he was forced to take command after the actual commander died.
  • Shout-Out: The achievement for collapsing all five Myst Pylons is called "Construct Additional Pylons".
  • Sir Swears-a-Lot: Cookie says "damn" quite a lot, even in the quote on his card. He goes straight into cluster D-bomb territory if Ellsworth dies in the crash.
  • Slave Race: It seems that most surviving Elder Things are now serving the Nameless Madness, as its puppets.
  • The Smart Guy:
    • Professor Dyer and his student Danforth are amongst the scientists in the team, and helps the team mainly through their expertise. During scenarios, Dyer acts as The Medic of sort (only healing the horror instead of damage), while Danforth helps with getting rid of Tekeli-li cards (which represents growing madness); between scenarios, they switches roles, with Dyer helping with Tekeli-li, and Danforth helping investigators to better prepare and start with more cards in opening hand.
    • Dr Amy Kensler is the team's biologist, who, assuming she lives through the campaign and finishes her research, unlocks the Golden Ending. Besides that, she significantly helps investigators on their missions, giving massive boosts to their Intellect stat.
    • If he lives up to the start of The Heart of Darkness, Danforth would explain the nature of the City of the Elder Things, and its lower levels. Without him, the investigators would be only able to speculate about its true nature, and the horrible implications would drive them to mental trauma.
  • The Sneaky Guy: Eliyah Ashevak provides the investigator whom he follows with massive boost to their Agility. Being a former hunter, he certainly knows how to sneak up on things, or avoid being spotted.
  • Sole Survivor:
    • Some Partners have this as part of their backstory:
      • Eliyah Ashevak (along with his Canine Companion Anyu) are the only ones who made it back from one hunt in Alaska which went bad. The others were killed by some monsters, and Eliyah now understands that those were real, despite all the claims to contrary.
      • Avery Claypool was the only one who survived from his expedition; the others were killed by some artifact they uncovered. Claypool still doesn't know what the purpose it served, only that it was some sort of a lightning rod.
    • If Eliyah Ashevak is the only Partner to make it back from the expedition, he has the special scene in the epilogue, where he comments on him and Anyu being the only ones to live yet again, as if they are cursed.
  • Starfish Aliens: The Elder Things (the alien creatures resembling the actual starfishes with wings, tentacles and eyestalks) returns — and they aren't friendly.
  • Sudden Sequel Death Syndrome: One of the Partners always dies in the very start of the story. This may include Dyer or Danforth, returning characters from original novel (with another one commenting on their demise). If they survive there, they may die at later point. However, if they both survives, there's a special scene in the epilogue.
  • Survivor Guilt: If Eliyah Ashevak makes it to the epilogue, but everyone else perishes, he comments on himself being cursed, and says that he should've been dead. When told that perhaps he lives to keep Anyu safe, he replies that it's the other way around: it's she who saved him back then, and keeps saving him now.
  • Taking You with Me: In To the Forbidden Peaks, if Cookie is the one to die when the beast attacks, he goes down fighting, wounding the monster. Unfortunately, he fails to actually kill it.
  • Talking to the Dead: Amy Kensler was never able to propose her feelings to Mala Sinha, being too shy. If Mala dies in the crash, she finally says it to her corpse, but gets interrupted by Claypool who says that crying on such cold is dangerous.
  • The Team: Every Partner provides both the active support during scenarios (if taken along), and passive bonuses in between scenarios (and sometimes penalties for them no longer being there at specific points). Losing them and their abilities would hurt a lot.
  • Time Abyss: The Elder Things came to Earth a billion years ago, yet this place is even older than them, and is the reason why the City was build there.
  • Timed Mission: In the second part of The Heart of Madness, investigators have limited time to collapse all the Pylons, which is measured by amount of parts of the Nameless Horror which manifests as the doom increases. When all fifteen spawns, the entity starts pursuing them, leaving no other choice than to Run or Die. If this happens, the players would only gain the worst out of three possible endings, assuming they even survive.
  • Token Evil Teammate: Downplayed with Cookie. He's often rude and loud (going into conflicts with people), questionably sane Shell-Shocked Veteran (it's telling that he has a single point of Sanity), to the point that his card's subtitle is "Questionable choice", but he's still heroic and cares about his teammates (and they care about him), despite sometimes coming into conflict with them.
  • Unfortunate Name: According to Cookie, it was a bad idea to name the expedition's ship "Theodosia", as naming a ship after someone who's died at sea brings bad luck.
  • Vitriolic Best Buds: If both Cookie and Takada survives to the epilogue, they would plan another expedition — for just two of them — to either find Takada's father, or confirm that he's indeed dead... all while never ending arguing over some minor things. But the investigators who busts them doing so notices that they always stick together, and comments that as long as they stick together, there's nothing impossible for them.
  • We Hardly Knew Ye: One of the nine Partners dies in the plane crash, before any meaningful character development may be made. The only way to learn something about them after that is by doing the Fatal Mirage scenario, which allows to see their memories.
  • Wrench Wench: Takada Hiroko was included in the team as an airplane mechanic. Since the airplane is now gone, she plays the role of the team's "quartermaster", as she puts it.
  • You Are in Command Now: Cookie's worst memory (exploited by the Nameless Madness) is about one battle during the First World War, when he fought on the Ottoman front. He was a sergeant then, but was forced to take command on the battle when lieutenant has died before reaching them.
  • Your Worst Memory: Each Partner's has one old, horrible memory which taunts them. In Fatal Mirage, they gains the chance to fight and overcome them, becoming stronger in process, as well as increasing their chance to survive later. Those memories are also what the Nameless Horror would use to kill them in The Heart of Madness, unless they fought it before and thus became immune, or there's a friend who may protect them.
    • For Takada Hiroko, it's the memory of the last time she saw her father alive.
    • For James "Cookie" Fredericks, it's the memory of his time during First World War, when he fought on the Ottoman Front, and was forced to take command after his commander's death.
    • For Eliyah Ashirak it's the of about the hunt gone awry, resulting in him and the dog Anyu becoming the only survivors.
    • For Amy Kensler, it's the memory of her being unable to propose her feelings, and the stress caused by it.
    • For Mala Sinha, it's the memory of her first lost patient, which still haunts her.
    • For Roald Ellsworth, it's the memory of his first major discovery — the first on the long path of uncovered secrets which better be kept buried.
    • For Avery Claypool, it's the memory of one of his discoveries, which costed his entire expedition their lives... while he still failed to understand what it was.
    • For William Dyer, it's the memory of him being one of the persons behind the first Antarctic expedition, and thus, indirectly responsible for its death.
    • For Paul Danforth, it's the memory of something he saw in the City of the Elder Things, which nearly drew him inside before, and still can't leave him alone.

Standalone Scenarios tropes

Normal scenarios

     Curse of the Rougarou tropes 
  • Cursed with Awesome: Zig-Zagging Trope. In one of the endings, you can become a Rougarou yourself, with all of its battle capabilities, but it potentially can enter Blessed with Suck territory, depending on investigator; while it can set your basic Strength and Agility to 5, it would also set your basic Willpower and Intellect to 2. This, however, means nothing for Calvin Wright, since his basic stats are all 0 anyway, meaning his condition would be only improved.
  • Dark Is Not Evil: The Rougarou can be dealt with non-lethally, which reveals that it was a normal guy who was not able to control his actions. His final words before departing are wishing you luck with dealing with the Curse of Rougarou, and not end up as a mindless beast like him.
  • Our Werewolves Are Different: The plot involves dealing with Rougarou (werewolf-like beast from Luisiana's folklore) in New Orleans.
  • Swamps Are Evil: The scenario's events occurs in New Orleans' swamps. The Rougarou is not the only local danger, with local monsters ranging from anomalously big, but otherwise earthly fauna, like leeches and alligators, to monsters from Dream Lands, somehow materialised on Earth, like Gugs and Dholes.

     Carnevale of Horrors tropes 
  • City of Canals: The story is set in Venice.
  • Combat Tentacles: Venice is attacked by Cnidathqua, an enormously big tentacled beast. It's so huge, it doesn't even need to move to attack you.
  • Masquerade Ball: It was another carnival in Venice... until an Eldritch Abomination hungry for blood shows up, and things go to hell.
    • Since this is a masquerade, it's hard to tell innocent bystanders apart from local cultists until it's too late.
    • If you manage to prevent a bloodbath, you are rewarded with magical carnival masks.

     Guardians of the Abyss tropes 
  • And I Must Scream: Victims of sleeping curse are perfectly aware of their condition, while suffer from eternal nightmares.
  • Big Bad: Xzharah, "Chosen One" of Brotherhood of the Beast.
  • Burning the Ships: In Eternal Slumber, once the train is sabotaged, there is no escape; you must win together or die together. This's actually required to catch and interrogate one of cultists.
  • Dark Messiah: Xzharah is "Chosen One" of Brotherhood of the Beast, cult of followers of Dark Pharaoh Nefren-Ka.
  • Dream Land: Titular "Abyss" is part of the Dreamlands. This is actually how "dream curse" works, by forcibly putting victim's mind into Abyss, while their comatose body remains in "waking world".
  • Enemy Mine: It is possible to make alliance with Xzharah in The Night's Usurper. This rewards your with unique weapon, but all victims of sleeping curse (including your friends) would remain asleep forever...
  • Forced Sleep: In first scenario, Eternal Slumber, citizens of Cairo, Egypt just suddenly fell asleep, one by one, and no one can help them or understand reason behind this.
    • Story-wise, finding a way to cure it is the premise of first scenario and reason why investigators arrived in the first place. Fortunately, this condition is reversible, but only in "good" endings for both scenarios.
    • Gameplay-wise, this can happen to investigators themselves or their "Allies", through "Taken by Abyss" mechanic'. Anyone "taken by Abyss" gets removed from campaign for its duration, and can't be used in any way. If investigators are "taken by Abyss", they are unplayable (just like killed or insane ones), meaning you must chose another one to continue playing — and possibly save the ones stuck in eternal slumber.
  • Powered by a Forsaken Child: Each victim of sleeping curse empowers Brotherhood's "Chosen One", Xzharah.
  • Religion of Evil: Brotherhood of the Beast, cult of Dark Pharaoh Nefren-Ka's followers. They are behind whole sleeping curse plot, for the sake of empowering their chosen one, Xzharah.
  • Rocks Fall, Everyone Dies: In both scenarios, if investigators take too long to accomplish their task, they would all become victims of this curse, becoming "taken by Abyss".

     Murder at the Excelsior Hotel tropes 
  • Anti-Frustration Features: In the case investigators failed to solve the case, they can replay this scenario once, for free.
  • Clear My Name: Whole point of scenario is to prove your innocence in murder that happened that night. Lead investigator did commit that crime, but it was done under evil influence. If you manage to prove it, police would leave you alone. If you didn't, you would be released before they manage to charge you with anything, and receive another chance to solve this case... or give up, and choose to run (which means, receiving new weaknesses, either Detective or Madness ones, without any benefits).
  • Multiple-Choice Past: Not for investigators, but for Excelsior Hotel itself.
    • There are five possible culprits behind recent murders; each one would be behind this depends on which leads investigators find (they are randomised, and after you acquire two of them, you are forced to progress further, cutting other three out). This includes: Cult which attempts to interact with other dimension; Vengeful Ghost of murdered woman; Mi-Go involvement; formless goo-like Eldritch Abomination which came here to eat; and some evil brain in the jar with psychic powers.
    • Besides that, there are also two variations for each threat, depending on which two leads are used (one lead is always the same for both variations, while second one would differ, and alter your win condition against this threat.
  • My God, What Have I Done?: No matter the outcome, lead investigator did commit that murder, and it would haunt them for the rest of their life. In gameplay terms, this works as appropriately named "What have you done" weakness.
  • No Points for Neutrality: In order to recruit Sergeant Monroe, you must either leave everything as is and instead collect additional evidences, or clear every trace of your involvement. Anything in between would make Sergeant Monroe suspect you.
  • One-Hit Kill: Each time Dimensional Shambler deals damage to investigator, they must reveal chaos token, and if they reveal "auto-failure" token, they would be snatched by creature and immediately defeated (creature disappears, too, but it probably wouldn't make you feel any better).
  • Police Are Useless: Until investigators decided to investigate on their own, police spent over a month in futile attempt to solve this case. Depending on outcome of this scenario, they can either help you, or go after you.
  • Reasonable Authority Figure: While sceptical initially, Sergeant Monroe would believe in your story and side with you, if you collect enough evidences of anomalous activities (including most recent murder which was done by you), or, conversely, hide anything pointing this murder to you (in which case he would ask you for help instead, but otherwise outcome would be the same). You also must avoid spilling any more innocent blood, including, of course, other cops.
  • Unwitting Pawn: Lead investigator to whatever evil force is behind those murders; in fact, most recent murder was done by lead investigator under that power's influence. If you provoke it to reveal itself, but fails to stop in time, they would use you to commit even more murders.

Epic Multiplayer scenarios

     The Labyrinths of Lunacy tropes 
  • Acid Pool: Second obstacle for "Group B" is room filled with highly corrosive poison. To neutralise it, one of them must must go inside and turn machine off; if they were injected with antidote, they would survive, otherwise, they would die. If no one does this in time, all investigators would be pulled here by force.
  • Alternate Universe: Each group exist in separate universe, meaning they can include same investigators, which is normally forbidden. But there is only one Eixodolon for all of them.
  • Anti-Frustration Features: In "Single Group" mode, since first two acts can't be advanced until corresponding agenda advances too, rules specifically allows to manually advance doom on current agenda in case players feel they completed what they wanted and just need to finish everything quickly.
  • Big Bad: Eixodolon, the being who abducted you and many others for its sick pleasure.
  • Control Room Puzzle: First task of "Group C" is to find which one of three levers would open the door, then one of them must pull the lever. If they pull the wrong one, they die. If no one pulls lever in time, investigator closest to levers would die (and if there is more than one candidate, they must chose who would die). Either way, surviving member would proceed to Act 2.
  • Deadly Gas: Several variations:
    • Poisonous gas is one of common "treacheries" encountered throughout whole scenario.
    • "Group A" would be killed by toxic, rot-inducing gas if they fail their first task.
  • Death Trap: Full spectrum of them: containers slowly filling with water, gas traps, dangerous gears, etc.
  • Drowning Pit: First task of "Group B" is free one of them from big glass container, which slowly gets filled with water. If only one investigator is presented, they would always start in the container.
  • Emotion Eater: Eixodolon becomes stronger as he consumes his victim's pain.
  • Everything Trying to Kill You: This place looks like it was designed by John Kramer, and just as deadly. Gas traps and big, deadly gears are just the most common dangers.
  • Golden Ending: Each time Eixodolon gets defeated, it gets weaker. To finally kill it, all three groups must survive; if even one of them dies, Eixodolon survives and would continue its... "games".
  • Ground by Gears: Another common "treachery" is being stuck in some dangerous mechanism and being slowly crashed by it.
  • Heroic Sacrifice: If none of "Group B" investigators has been injected with antidote, whoever would go inside Chamber of Poison, would die. One of them must do this, otherwise whole team would be pulled here (and dies anyway).
  • Lock and Key Puzzle: First task of "Group A" is to find a key and open the gate. If they fail, they die.
  • Malevolent Architecture: This place was called "Labyrinths of Lunacy" for a reason. It looks like one big sadistic experiment... and you and your friends are the lab rats.
  • Poison Is Corrosive: Whatever it is in Acid Pool in "Group B's" Act 2, it's capable to quickly dissolve human flesh, unless you have an antidote.
  • Timed Mission:
    • Notably, first two Acts for any of three groups are timed; if they fail to perform required tasks before Agenda advances, minimum one member of the group would die.
    • In "Epic Multiplayer" mode, players may impose real-time limit for agenda (rules suggests using 60 minutes limit by default); past this point, players may play until next Mythos phase, after which agenda would advance immediately.
  • Trapped-with-Monster Plot: "Group C's" second task requires them to get rid of Eixodolon's "pet" before Agenda advances. If they fail, beast gets released. While it's not instant failure, beast is not an easy target.
  • Year Inside, Hour Outside: Second task of "Group A". In this place, time moves... differently. They must find a way to deactivate this effect, otherwise, when it would be activated in full force, they would rot away in mere seconds.
  • You Wake Up in a Room: Each group awakes in unknown place and must figure out how to escape — preferably alive.

     The Blob That Ate Everything tropes 
  • Abstract Eater: Blob can "eat" things like precision (this sets basic Strength to 0), curiosity (sets basic Knowledge to 0), versatility (investigator can't use cards not matching his/her class), or concept of language (you may only speak in gibberish).
  • Apocalypse How: Class X-4; if investigators fails to stop Blob, it would devour entire universe, until it would be only thing left.
  • Attack Its Weak Point: Only way to actually damage Blob is to force it to reveal its heart, then concentrate your whole attacking force on it.
  • Bait-and-Switch: "Blob devours your house. Search the collection for Your House (Core #124); it is devoured".
  • Big Bad Ensemble: While Blob is the main threat, every time investigators would try to reach any meaningful progress, they would face Mi-Go; it's unclear wether they are related to the Blob, but they certainly trying to exploit the catastrophe for their own profit, and constantly gets at odds with investigators.
  • Blob Monster: Titular Blob is enormous mass of green all-consuming goo. Also, all non-Mi-Go enemies are parts of this monster.
  • Exactly What It Says on the Tin: Blob really can eat ''everything’’, with whole four pages being devoted to the things it can possibly devour. Amongst other things, it may eat precision (sets basic Strength to 0), curiosity (sets basic Knowledge to 0), versatility (investigator can't use cards not matching his/her class), or concept of language (you may only speak in gibberish). This is also how final agenda's reverse side is called, which leads to, yes, Blob eating everything.
  • Extreme Omnivore: Blob can and would devour completely random things, ranging from investigator's cards (and investigators themselves) and ending with treacheries, enemies and locations, and even itself (non-fatally, unfortunately, but it would cause light damage).
  • The Fourth Wall Will Not Protect You: Certain things Blob may "devour" make no In-Universe sense whatsoever, and clearly directed at players; almost all such options are purely for fun (which is entire point of scenario). Amongst other things Blob may "devour" are light (so you would be reduced to using flashlights), investigator's mini-card (forcing you to substitute it with something), chaos bag (bag itself, not tokens), your cellphone and your soul.
  • Increasingly Lethal Enemy: Pet Oozeling, an "Ally" which you may potentially earn in this scenario, is nominally on your side, but each time you use its special effect, you risk instant defeat (with physical trauma) after that. After each use chance for that becomes increasingly higher.the
  • It Only Works Once: If any card with the "Melee" trait is used against a Grasping Ooze enemy, it is devoured after the attack, removing it from the game for the rest of the scenario.
  • It's a Wonderful Failure: They aren't kidding when they say that Blob would eat everything. Lose scenario, and you would see this:
    Subject 8L-08 devours all cards in play and out of play, all cards in your collection, all cards that ever were, and all that ever will be.
  • Joke Level: One of the sillier and more humour-driven scenarios, mainly oriented for big, funny events; this contrasts with main game being grim, serious and story-driven.
  • Killed Off for Real: Everything which gets "devoured" is destroyed until the end of scenario; if Blob devours investigator, investigator dies.
  • Luck-Based Mission:
    • If you grab "It's got me!" treachery from the encounter deck, wether you survive depends on your ability to reach Research Site in time... and spend 1 countermeasure, which you may or may not have by this point.
    • What Blob would "devour" depends on tokens revealed; some options are actually benevolent, some are outright non-sensual, but most are malevolent, and some are nearly game-ending.
  • Lethal Joke Character: Many things Blob may "devour" are completely senseless ("your cellphone", really?), but other are lethal: it can (and would) devour your whole deck and your investigator, with fatal results.
  • Non Standard Game Over: If this scenario is played as part of campaign, when investigators fails to stop the Blob, they fail both this scenario and the entire campaign, because Blob eats everything.
  • One-Hit Kill:
    • Pet Oozeling can instantly defeat any non-elite enemy... after which you must reveal chaos token(s) (number of tokens increases after each use), and if at least one of revealed tokens was auto-failure, you would be instantly defeated and suffer physical trauma.
    • Universal Solvent can be used to kill any non-elite enemy, assuming investigator passes (potentially very hard) Intellect check; check's difficulty depends on enemy's remaining health. Solvent is particularly lethal in the hands of Seekers.
  • Ray Gun: Amongst other possible rewards, investigators may obtain Mi-Go weapon, which fires "entropic energy".
  • Serial Escalation: First expansion to add possibility for multiple teams in the same game, The Labyrinths of Lunacy, was able to sustain up to 3 four-investigators teams. This scenario can sustain up to 96 investigators total.
  • Starfish Aliens: Besides Blob, investigators may also face Mi-Go — alien insect/crab/fungus hybrid from outers space. They actually have their own agenda, which, if not prevented, would cause some additional penalties, but if investigators actually succeed in stopping it, they would earn some additional rewards.
  • Timed Mission:
    • In Epic Multiplayer mode, time limit (by default 180 minutes) can be imposed; when it expires, every group still alive immediately fails scenario and gets devoured.
    • Getting rid of "It's got me!" treachery; either you do so under six rounds, or you gets devoured and die.
    • All side missions are timed in some way; investigators must prevent Mi-Go from reaching their goals or suffer consequences.
  • You Are Already Dead: "It's got me!" treachery; once you received that, you have six rounds to get rid of it, or you would be devoured. Only way to get rid of it? Spend 1 countermeasure, which are in very limited supply (there are ways to obtain more, but considering you are on the very tight time limit, you may not have time to spare). Additionally, you must be in specific location to do so.
  • Your Soul Is Mine!: Blob can devour your soul. Yes, yours.

     War of the Outer Gods tropes 
  • Apocalypse Cult: The cultists of Silenus want to just end the world. They see it as a twisted Mercy Kill.
    A swift and painless end is a mercy.
  • Assimilation Plot: Ezel-zen-rezl is the master of the swarm of insectoid monsters; its human cult's goal is to bring them on Earth in order to assimilate humanity, by consuming us and rebuilding as the part of the swarm.
    Assimilation is the only way.
  • Big Bad Ensemble: The three antagonistic Ancient Ones, while not in alliance (quite opposite, in fact), are just as dangerous to humanity as they are to each other, and whoever triumphs, would proceed to conquer the Earth. So, the investigators must wipe out all three cults.
  • Colour-Coded for Your Convenience: Each of the three Ancient Ones have different colour schemes to easily distinguish them, including their related encounter cards. Silenus is blue, Magh'an Ark'at is green, and Ezel-zen-rezl is red. Encounter cards not aligned with either Ancient One uses standard colour scheme.
  • Evil Is Deathly Cold: Literally. Silenus's influence causes massive temperature drop, up to and including the levels incompatible with life.
  • Hive Mind: Each insect in the swarm is actually the part of the greater being — Ezel-zen-rezl, the one mind spread across entire swarm. The bigger the swarm, the stronger the Ancient One becomes.
  • Horde of Alien Locusts: Ezel-zen-rezl's agents are insectoid monstrosities who would devour anyone standing in their way. In fact, Ezel-zen-rezl even looks like the locust swarm. Absolutely enormous swarm.
  • Increasingly Lethal Enemy: The main gimmick of Magh'an Ark'at and its agents; as they gain "mutation" tokens (mechanic unique to the green faction), which happens every turn by itself (they can gain additional tokens from the other effects), most monsters gains increased stats. There's no upper limit how many mutation monster can accumulate, so if left unchecked, the monsters can quickly overwhelm the investigators. Magh'an Ark'at itself, in particular, deals damage to everyone around it, which quickly accumulates to the point of terminating everyone in one hit before agenda even advances.
  • The Juggernaut: If Magh'an Ark'at wins, it would proceed to manually wipe out all the cities on Earth, completely disregarding any resistance. It wouldn't even bother to kill the investigators first, as there's nothing they can do anyway.
  • Mêlée à Trois: The three antagonistic Eldritch Abominations and their minions are so busy fighting each other (their agents actually actively attack each other, thanks with the new "warring" keyword), they would mostly ignore investigators unless attacked first (though some elite monsters would target the investigators). That being said, stepping aside and just allowing them to wipe out each other is not an option, since monsters' infighting directly advances their masters' agendas: their masters accumulates Doom either when their enemies gets slain by their minions, or when there are no enemies to fight. And if one faction defeats the other two, it would dedicate all its attention to investigators.
  • Multiple Endings: The ending — and the reward — changes depending on which Ancient One gets defeated last.
  • Non Standard Game Over: If scenario is played as part of the campaign, losing it results in immediately losing the entire campaign as well, as allowing either of the Eldritch Abominations to win means the apocalypse.
  • Religion of Evil: Three cults at once this time around, one per the Ancient One, each with their own gimmicks, encounter sets and the world-ending goal.
  • Rocks Fall, Everyone Dies: Once either cult succeeds at summoning the Ancient One they worship, investigators have one last chance to stop them. Once that time runs out, the Ancient One would proceed to wipe out all life on Earth.
  • Sadistic Choice: The main gimmick of Silenus and its agents; almost each blue card forces investigators to choose between three options, with neither one being good (doom increase is a universal one, with the other two usually involving either a huge amount of horror or permanently removing your cards from the game). The two exceptions amongst encounter cards are regular cultists (who have only one effect, shared with the other cultists), and one elite monster who amplifies the other cards by forcing investigators to choose two options out of three each time.
  • Space Is Magic: Silenus is associated with space, and (along with its cultists) takes its power from here. It even resembles some space nebula.
  • Stalked by the Bell: Letting one of the three faction to finish their agenda deck wouldn't end the game, but would cause the Ancient One to spawn, forcing investigators to drop everything and defeat it within very tight time limit, while facing extreme danger.
  • Time-Limit Boss: If Ancient One actually awakens, all the other tasks and agendas gets replaced by one final goal — defeat the Ancient One within the time limit of 9 doom points, or perish alongside the rest of humanity.
  • Transformation Horror: Magh'an Ark'at's influence causes horrible mutations in its followers, with high-level cultists barely resembling humans anymore.
  • Utopia Justifies the Means: Cultists of Magh'an Ark'at actually believes that when the egg would hatch, it would bring the paradise to our world; of course, their idea of "paradise" may be not to our liking...
    We shall usher in a new paradise!
  • Zerg Rush:
    • Ezel-zen-rezl reuses the "swarm" mechanic previously introduced in The Dream Eaters Cycle as its main gimmick. note  Additionally, they can increase their numbers further on as the game goes. Fortunately, each individual insect has only 1 health, and insects are restricted to dealing either damage or horror, not both.
    • Ezel-zen-rez itself is represented by enormous swarm of insects instead of one solid entity like the other two Ancient Ones, likely being the hive mind rather than separate creature. Its main danger is that it constantly reinforces insects in the game at the cost of draining player cards.

Challenge scenarios

     Tropes applying to all of them 
  • Loyalty Mission: These scenarios are based around specific investigators' backstory, and and allows them to upgrade their signature card to even stronger version. However, failure to succeed in this scenarios would result in their weakness being "upgraded" instead. If she starts scenario while already using "parallel" versions of their cards (upgrading both signature card and weakness), then it works in reverse (success would result in weakness being downgraded to basic version while signature card remains upgraded, while failure would only downgrade her personal card).
  • Origins Episode: These scenarios are based around investigators' backstories, and tells how they got involved in their quest.
  • Required Party Member: Scenario can't be played unless specific investigator is presented — both because this is their story, and because it's entirely build around their abilities.
  • We Cannot Go On Without You: If investigator whose story it is gets defeated, entire scenario ends in defeat.

     By the Book (Roland's story) 
Bureau agent Roland Banks investigates the series of disappearances in Arkham. All of them have same thing in common: suspiciously close relation to same person, congressman Damien Grey, who's not from Arkham, yet stays here for quite a long already. And then there's that strange goat-like creature which was seen by many. Roland wouldn't go to rest until he breaks that case...
  • All for Nothing: If Roland gets defeated before he has a chance to close the case, it gets closed by force without any results, while Roland himself gets forced to lay low.
  • Continuity Nod: The ending directly questions wether Roland would be able to maintain his directives if they start interfering with him fighting the forces of evil. "Canon" Roland made a decision to discard them in his backstory.
  • Corrupt Politician: All victims of the case Roland is investigating are connected to Mr. Grey in one way or another, and he's actively trying to get the case closed — because he's a member of the cult which Roland is investigating.
  • Cult: The story is about Roland investigating activities of the local cult (judging from monsters presented, one of Shub-Niggurath).
  • Fetch Quest: The goal is to arrest as many Cultist enemies as possible, by bringing them to Police Station and Parleying with them here; Cultists are spread all over the city, so it wouldn't be easy to find them.
  • Gameplay and Story Segregation: Scenario reuses cultists from The Night of the Zealot campaign, despite them actually serving entirely different deity.
  • Gimmick Level: Instead of killing Cultists as usually, you need to drag them to Police Station, and use "Parley" action to arrest them; they can't be reduced below 1 health, but their health makes dealing with them easier nonetheless.
  • Greater-Scope Villain: Whatever force is behind the cult, they wouldn't intervene during this scenario.
  • The Heavy: Mr. Grey isn't the one who organised the cult — some outside force influenced him and the others — but he's the most prominent villain in this scenario, and the main threat to Roland's goal to deal with the cult.
  • Human Sacrifice: The plot was kickstarted by Roland investigating some recent human sacrifices by a new local cult.
  • Karma Houdini:
    • Any cultists Roland fails to arrest would go away with their crimes.
    • If the deadline is reached, not only Roland fails to completely dismantle the cult, but one of the already arrested cultists would be released (Mr. Grey always takes priority, otherwise it would be any of the other cultists); it's explained by Roland's superior not believing in whatever evidence Roland gathered on the cult, and not being willed to bother with researching further, rather than just close the case.
  • Know When to Fold 'Em: While arresting more (or, better, all) cultists would provide better outcome, the main goal is to arrest Mr. Grey, other cultists are secondary priority; if the deadline is reached, Roland's superior would close the case prematurely, and let the guy go, free to start everything all over again, as well as releasing one of already arrested cultists (in case he was arrested, it would always be Mr. Grey).
  • Race Against the Clock: The case on which Roland is working has explicit deadline, justifying the time limit in the scenario.

     Read or Die (Daisy's story) 
Librarian Daisy Walker always loved reading. She also loved horrors, loved to taste her limits. But there're the books best left unread. Daisy's curiosity released some dangerous entity sealed within "Necronomicon", and now only she can capture it again before it hurts someone else.
  • Big Bad: The whole mess was caused by the evil spirit which was sealed in the "Necronomicon", known as "Namer of the Dead".
  • Escort Mission: Only Daisy may actually finish this scenario. The rest of the team, if present, act as her backup, since if she gets defeated, there's no way to win.
  • Fetch Quest: Daisy starts with all non-weakness "Tomes" being extracted from her deck and hidden across the Miskatonic University, requiring her to collect them back again. While not strictly necessary, due to the way Final Boss works, each "Tome" would make the battle easier (default skill check is 18 Willpower, but it gets reduced by 2 for each "Tome", up to still hight, but at least manageable 4 Willpower). Scenario's rules demands that Daisy must use at least 4 "Tomes" in her deck before attempting this scenario, to ensure that it would be at least playable.
  • Magic Librarian: Daisy starts with Henry Armitage (librarian and Myth expert by himself) by default, who can provide her with two "Hand" slots more, specifically for "Tome" assets.
  • Tome of Eldritch Lore: "Necronomicon":
    • Whole mess was started by whatever evil force sealed within the book. If Mandy succeeds at her task, she manages to partially seal this entity, while on failure, it would remain at near full strength. Either way, she would take the "Necronomicon" with her for everyone's safety.
    • The "upgraded" version of "Necronomicon" now, instead of merely replacing her "Elder Sign" token with "Auto-failure" and taking one hand slot, forces her to treat it as the "Cultist", "Tablet" and "Elder Thing" chaos tokens at the same time, with all the chaos it involves, including scenario-specific special effects, which may and often would be much worse than merely failing the skill check.
  • Unintentionally Unwinnable: Due to oversight, this scenario lacks rulings regarding Daisy being defeated (normally, Challenge scenarios ends in defeat immediately if key character gets eliminated); as only Daisy can perform required task, scenario becomes unwinnable if that happens.

     All or Nothing (Skids's story) 
Skids O'Toole, the former convict, has to somehow pay up massive hospital debts left after his (now late) mother. He's gaining money the best way he knows — through gambling. Casino "The Clover Club", run by O'Bannion gang, has a reputation for always staying victorious in the end — "the house always wins". Today, Skids plans to change that.
  • All for Nothing: If Skids gets defeated, all would be for nothing, as he would be forced to leave empty-handed.
  • Heist Episode: Focus of this scenario is robbing O'Bannion's casino to obtain money to pay for Skids's mother's medical bills.
  • Illegal Gambling Den: Scenario is set in (masked as club) casino run by O'Bannion gang.
  • Know When to Fold 'Em: While you would receive better reward if you leave with more resources, remember that you are on a time limit; not only you would lose whatever resources not delivered to the exit, but thugs would eventually bring heavy forces and just kick you out by force, resulting in physical traumas for anyone who failed to escape in time (and failing scenario if Skids was not amongst the ones who evacuated).
  • Run or Die: Sooner or later, thugs would catch up with your schemes, and go against you. After you accumulate at least 15 resources, your task changes to evacuating with what you earned before they summon the reinforcements and kick you out.
  • So Much for Stealth: Original plan involved stealthy stealing money from casino, and run away. Then casino's security caught up and started hunting for Skids and his crew, forcing them to grab everything they can and run.
  • You Dirty Rat!: O'Bannion's casino is heavily infested with hungry, aggressive rats who attack on sight.

     Bad Blood (Agnes' story) 
Agnes Baker was a humble waitress, until one day the memory of distant, ancient life awakened — and with it, her old self's magic. She's slowly recovering what was lost, but now there's someone else who's interested in those old memories (and power hidden behind it), a strange woman named Elspeth — and whatever she plans to do, those plans aren't benevolent...
  • Big Bad: Agnes has to deal with the enemy from her old life, Elspeth Baudin, who tries to collect the same power which belonged to Agnes in her past life.
  • Escort Mission: Agnes' presence is required in order to collect the memories (though everyone can actually pay the price, not just her), and if she gets eliminated, scenario is lost immediately.
  • Evil Counterpart: Elspeth is another Hyperborean witch, like Agnes. But if Agnes wants to do good, Elspeth embraced the evil side, and wishes to corrupt Agnes into doing the same.
  • If You Kill Him, You Will Be Just Like Him!: If Agnes defeats Elspeth, she refuses to finish her off (to Elspeth's disappointment), stating that she doesn't want to be like her.
  • Increasingly Lethal Enemy: Inverted, Elspeth grows weaker with every Memory she collects.
  • No-Sell: Elspeth can't be automatically evaded, protecting her from many cards which would otherwise allow to cheese the scenario.
  • Religion of Evil: Aside from Night Gaunts, all your enemies in this scenario are evil cultists.

     Red Tide Rising (Wendy's story) 
Wendy's father went missing at sea, and never returned; and mother was taken away to asylum. Now, Wendy Adams is alone, and only thing left of her family is amulet received from mother. Until now, she lived on the street, but now she finally has a chance to find out what has happened to her father — a photo dropped by some strange man. Her only hope to find more is to find that man, for which she has to go to Innsmouth...
  • Daddy Had a Good Reason for Abandoning You: In the good ending, Wendy finds a man who knows her father; he tells her that he made a mistake of dealing with some really bad people, and can't go back home for both his and Wendy's safety, but he's still alive.
  • Failure Is the Only Option: Even in the good ending, Wendy merely confirms that father is alive, but doesn't learn where he is. Given that her being an orphan looking for her Disappeared Dad is a central part of her story (in every game where she appears), it's unsurprising.
  • Hope Spot: Inverted in the good ending; when Wendy seemingly fails to achieve anything, she spots the man who originally gave her the photo, and he, when asked, reveals that father is still alive, even if he can't return to Wendy to not endanger her. This gives Wendy new resolve.
  • Invincible Minor Minion: If the Angry Mob is allowed to spawn, it can't be defeated; you can only stall it.
  • Searching for the Lost Relative: Wendy's main motivation is to find her missing father. The only lead she has is the strange man who gave her the photo of her father — the man who, for whatever reason, moved to Innsmouth.

Other scenarios

     Barkham Horror: The Meddling of Meowlathotep tropes 
  • Alternate Universe: Expansion is explicitly set in alternate universe, where instead of humans, Earth must be protected from forces of evil... by (sapient) domestic dogs. Forces of evil, in turn, are no one else but evil cats.
  • Always Chaotic Evil: Cats in this universe are all servants of a dark god Meowlathotep.
  • Cats Are Mean: Exaggerated; they are not just mean, they are outright evil and serves dark god... called Meowlathotep.
  • Cat/Dog Dichotomy: Entire premise; it's a story about heroic dogs fighting forces of evil cats.
  • Fake–Real Turn: It started as April Fools' Day joke about fake "expansion", "The Dogwich Legacy", but due to fans demands real expansion with same theme was announced later same year.
  • Formula-Breaking Episode: Story set in Alternate Universe, with heroic dogs fighting against forces of evil cats lead by Meowlathotep. Not something you expect from Arkham Horror, right?
  • Heroic Canines, Villainous Felines: In a world where evil cat servants of the dark god Meowlathothep threaten humanity, only one force can save the world — our faithful dogs. How? By becoming investigators themselves!
  • Joke Level: Instead of team of investigators fighting some eldritch horrors, this expansions is centred about team of dogs fighting some evil eldritch cats (aside from "this is alternate universe", there's no explanation, why; and do you really need it, anyway?). Originally just April Fool's Day joke in 2019, but due to fans' demands real expansion was developed and announced later same year, with actually playable "investigators" and working (yet not without some humour in their description) mechanics. This expansion may only played in standalone mode and only with dog characters provided with this expansion (this expansion's player cards also can't be transferred to non-dog scenarios; but, unless otherwise specified, you may use "normal" player cards when creating decks for dog investigators. Of course, developers are aware that players would try and use their favourite investigators anyway, which was directly acknowledged in announcement.
  • Mythology Gag: In every game he appears in, Ashcan Pete is accompanied by his dog, Duke. His counterpart in this expansion is (now playable) Duke... with "friendly human" Ashcan Pete as his signature ally. His stats are also inverted: Ashcan Pete had good Willpower and Agility, but bad Combat and Intellect (without Duke's help); as investigator, Duke has good Combat and Intellect, but bad Willpower and Agility.
  • Pun-Based Title: Barkham Horror.
  • Punny Name:
    • Main antagonist is a cat called Meowlathotep.
    • Every investigator is based on existing Arkham Horror character, but (save for Duke, who just swapped roles with Ashcan Pete) with name slightly changed to something setting-appropriate, since all of them are now dogs (like Bark Harrigan, or Kate Winthpup).
    • Pretty much anything which can be made into a dog- or cat-related pun, was made into one. Catling gun, Barkham, Meowlathothep...

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