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Song of the Dead



Song of the Dead

Song of the Dead

Type: Asset
Class: Mystic
Cost: 2
Level: 2
Willpower: 1
Intellect: 0
Combat: 0
Agility: 0
Wild: 0
Slot: 1 Arcane
Spell. Song.
Uses (5 charges).
[Action] Spend 1 charge: Fight. This attack uses [Willpower] instead of [Combat]. You get +1 [Willpower] for this attack. If a [Skull] symbol is revealed during this attack, this attack deals +2 damage.
Quantity: 2
Number: 112
Illustrator: Maggie Ivy
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17 Comments

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LoricatusLupus
Aug 15 2017 12:34 PM
Does the +2 damage happen even you fail the skill test? There's no mention of having to succeed and grammatically it's a seperate clause.
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slothgodfather
Aug 15 2017 01:56 PM

I'm pretty sure it has to be successful, but have no rules proof to back that assumption up other than intent of the card.  shhhh.  nothing to see here.

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RichardPlunkett
Aug 15 2017 04:52 PM

I disagree, the +2 damage seems to work regardless of success/failure. As noted, is it a separate clause, and it has no documented dependency on success (unlike eg. switchblade).

Fortunately, this only marginally constrains its use. On most adventures the [Skull] symbol is manageable and even if it is troublesome you will know its an issue before you decide to attack and risk your friend's life.

Thematically, this is death magic and the [Skull] represents a local spike in power that is usually favorable, but not always.

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LoricatusLupus
Aug 16 2017 09:58 AM
Great, that's what I thought as it's got to the point with the FF games where they're being careful about how they phase things - I don't feel like I'm turning poor wording into my advantage. For context, I'm using this in a Daisy deck to (gasp) replace Shrivelling as it seems more thematic and I'd rather have a better chance of doing ANY damage than a lower one of doing a bit more but also possibly gaining Horror. I like the way that the [Skull] could cause you to fail but still deal the damage, potentially to a friend!
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slothgodfather
Aug 16 2017 02:53 PM

So I just went back and reread the OP after Richard msg'd me (thanks!) and I think I misunderstood the intent of the original question.  The +2 dmg is absolutely there if you drew the skull token. So for purposes of attacking an enemy engaged with another, if you draw a skull token and it causes you to fail, you are doing 3 dmg to the engaged investigator. However, if the enemy is engaged with you and you fail after drawing the Skull token, zero damage is dealt. Sorry for the confusion and headache.  I will assume I didn't have enough coffee when originally replying.   :wacko:

Seems a very weak card in general. Any attack card that expects to only deal 1 damage isn't worth it for me, just take Overpower for early game Rats. Spending experience for it just makes it worse, I don't think I'd find room if it were level 0. 

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LoricatusLupus
Aug 24 2017 05:09 PM
Ah, and of course that's probably true for any dedicated mystic with access to better Shrivelling! However it's a superb support card for Daisy: doesn't take a hand slot but instead a non-competitive arcane one; REPLACES her poor combat stat (which would still only be doing one damage on a successful fight, tops); comes with more charges (this is really important when it's one of the few cards in the deck she can rely on to do damage with) and finally gives her that boost to Willpower. Seriously that final point cannot be overstated once you start getting experience and want to swap out the expensive Holy Rosiary that's only there to help her Shrivel things. You're right about it seeming like a poor Level 0 card but I've found it becomes more valuable as an upgrade because it can replace more than one card, and with a 30 card limit that's really important!
    • Carthoris and RichardPlunkett like this
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RichardPlunkett
Aug 25 2017 11:44 AM

I have always rated it low too, but you may well be right about Daisy.

My team's Daisy has wasted many an action on Fights or Evades that needed an Elder sign to pass, just because she had no other viable options. A Song of the Dead might have come in handy on such occasions.

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slothgodfather
Aug 25 2017 05:47 PM

I actually still like it in an Agnes deck.  I want more spells anyways due to her Heirloom and that there are so many charges available.  It's also decent with Jim since he can convert the Elder Sign into a skull token, giving you an increased chance at the additional dmg. 

 

That is a good idea with Daisy, but I tend to not stray to far from my guardian when playing her so other than the upgraded Strange Solution and an occasional I've Got a Plan!, she doesn't have to fight too often.

    • Carthoris likes this

Exactly. Having an upgrade that only causes 1 damage per attack (OK, cornercase 2 but really unlikely) when you can take Blinding Light for an evade that damages instead, and make use of Strange Solution, I've Got a Plan!, Disk of Itzamma, Mind Over Matter to evade - just not an option for me with all of these sound alternatives. Maybe if it's solo Daisy, otherwise her partner (or 1 of her partners) should be doing the job of looking after her, after all she contributes to the win condition in so many scenarios that in a 3/4 player game you can afford one of them to be at slightly lower efficiency just to be at her location. 

 

I don't have a Holy Rosary or Shrivelling on Daisy in the first place, its too many card slots for something she still doesn't do that well. 

 

With Jim its still at best 3/16 odds (assuming no tokens are added to the bag), that is pretty wasteful. In Agnes I don't think I have ever played the Heirloom, it has decent icons for skill checks and 3 resources is expensive for her when you want Rite of Seeking/Shrivelling/Pete out. 

 

Can't stress enough that any fight card that expects to do 1 damage is bad.

Remember that the corner case is 3 damage not 2 damage. (Since it does +2 damage on a skull) Doing 3 damage can be huge but the cost and unlikeliness does work against the card. 

 

(I did play it in a Jim deck and it worked fairly well but I was also not the primary combatant)

    • Carthoris likes this

Ah, I missed the + and just saw a 2! 

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swornabsent
Oct 17 2017 09:38 PM

I've only seriously played this out of Jim with Grotesque Statues to maximize skulls, and even then I'd just as soon see a Shriveling, so that tells me all I need to know about its effectiveness. Good points regarding it being a viable combat substitute for investigators like Daisy though. I suspect as the card pool grows we'll see it become more viable in Jim/whatever Mystic with more token draw shenanigans, and less viable for the likes of Daisy as she continues to get better in-class substitutes.

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slothgodfather
Oct 18 2017 02:31 PM

It's also more viable in a scenario with more skull tokens in the bag in general. 

I disagree, the +2 damage seems to work regardless of success/failure. As noted, is it a separate clause, and it has no documented dependency on success (unlike eg. switchblade).

Fortunately, this only marginally constrains its use. On most adventures the [Skull] symbol is manageable and even if it is troublesome you will know its an issue before you decide to attack and risk your friend's life.

Thematically, this is death magic and the [Skull] represents a local spike in power that is usually favorable, but not always.

 

I believie it says "+2 damage", and in case of failed attack you are not inflicting any base damage to which you can add those +2...

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RichardPlunkett
Nov 06 2017 06:19 PM

If you miss and deal no damage, the +2 obviously does nothing - you can't hurt a monster with a miss. But misses can do damage to other investigators, and in those circumstances it does apply. The +2 is not limited to successes, eg the way switch blade is.

    • amberan and Carthoris like this

If you miss and deal no damage, the +2 obviously does nothing - you can't hurt a monster with a miss. But misses can do damage to other investigators, and in those circumstances it does apply. The +2 is not limited to successes, eg the way switch blade is.

I see. Nasty :-)