Hey everyone, today we’re going back to our roots and covering some Cthulhu Wars material, in this episode, we’re covering the Library At Celano, Cele-ano, Celeano, however its pronounced, this one!
If you don’t know what this is, this is an alternate game map for Cthulhu Wars, instead of fighting to destroy Earth, you’re fighting to…that’s sort of the question, are you destroying the Library when doom reaches the max, or are you getting the resources you need to destroy Earth? I want to think they’re destroying Earth because the Librarian probably wouldn’t put up with crap.
Who is the librarian, this monstrous being who helps maintain order in the library, and in this game mode, the players have some influence on two greater beings, the caretaker and the Librarian. You can’t attack either, and they have great influence so I want to think that suggests that these beings are very powerful, if only inside their domain.
The game mode puts you on this very different looking map, which operates the same way as Earth in that you can flip each side to reveal a different number of players. If you have more than 5 players, you’ll need to acquire the larger 6 to 8 player map.
Inside the Library, movement is different. Cthulhu players take note, there is no Rylea, and the ocean’s don’t connect, instead there are these tiles that indicate the word “sea” meaning they’re submerged and count as oceans. Also, you have these two special types of areas, gates and stairs.
Stairs allow you to connect to the other set of stairs with the same letter. This allows you to travel between floors.
Gates allow you to travel to any other gate, which if you look, is quite a few of them.
This brings up my first bit of advice, in general, I’m not a fan of Crawling Chaos on this map, their advantage of flight is less advantageous when there are so many different ways of travelling great distances within the map. It might be a small thing, but if the factions are balanced on Earth (which is questionable depending on which set of optional rules you’re using), then CC is less so.
What else? Well you have these four special rooms, each of which contains a special tome, and at the start of the game, a gate spawns in each gate with no player necessary. These tomes are very powerful, and anyone can get them by taking control of the tome’s corresponding gate, they do not take the spot of any of your faction spellbooks.
Each of the tomes occupy a different role, and each tome except Barrier can be reset by releasing a captured cultist, discarding an elder sign, or discarding a Silence token.
• Guardian Under the Lake – For 1 power, You can force an entire faction occupying an area next to a gate, to any other area with a gate.
• Yr and the Nhhngr – For 1 power, If anyone has more doom than you, either place a monster at no additional cost or gain 2 power.
• Larvae of the Outer Gods – Gain 1 elder sign if anyone has more Power than you.
• Barrier of Naach Tith – this book is a bit different, no other player may declare an attack against you unless they release a captured cultist, discard an elder sign, or discard a silence token.
You gain the tomes by being the first person to control a gate with a Tome in it, and if you lose control of the gate, you don’t immediately lose control of the tome, instead the tome becomes OverDue.
What are Silence Tokens? Well you get one of these things each doom phase, and if you don’t spend it, you won’t get another, so use it or lose it!
Silence Tokens are primarily how you interact with the two iGOOs, the Custodian and the Librarian, as well as activate or cancel certain Tomes.
By spending a Silence Token, you can move the custodian to any area and roll the Agony die, if you don’t move the custodian, it gets +1 to the Agony die. Bump as many units as you roll into the oubliette, possibly including your own units as you must spend as many Agony points as possible.
Alternatively, if any player has any Overdue Tomes, you can sick the library on them! Spend a silence token, move the librarian to any area, and roll the Agony die, likewise, the Librarian gets +1 to its agony if it doesn’t have to roll.
You can target any player who has a unit in the area who also has an overdue Tome. That player must satisfy all Agony, however they choose based on the following list.
• Eliminate a unit in the area satisfies one agony.
• Losing a doom point satisfies one agony.
• Returning an overdue Tome satisfies one agony.
This is the only way a player may lose a Tome, is by being targeted by the Librarian.
Who wants this map?
Anyone who enjoys battles will enjoy the close confines of this map, everyone is close and the consequences of letting a player hold onto a tome can be severe, while losing control of a Tome area can likewise be severe.
The map is really crazy, and causes some severe shifts based on what happens with the agony dice, I really don’t think anyone who isn’t very comfortable with the rules should play this map, but if you are, you might enjoy this very differently played game.
What about Faction tips?
Barrier can be interesting for Black Goat, because often BG has to put themselves at risk to occupy so many areas to get their spellbooks. Suddenly with Barrier, they’re a bit safer. You should have more doom than other players and often more power, so the only other Tome that is useful to you is Guardian Under the Lake which can help you afford all of your dark young.
Like I said, I’m not a huge fan of playing Crawling Chaos on this map, but if I do, I really try to get Yr and the Nhhngr, I always struggle with power as Crawling Chaos, and extra power or monsters can really help to secure the Harbinger.
Great Cthulhu can really enjoy using Guardian under the Lake as often Cthulhu will have a large powerful submerged force, and instead of emerging on dry land, you can first move an enemy to one of the seas that has a gate.
For Opener of the Way, try and get Yr and the Nhhngr as soon as possible, the free monsters can help you get your Great Old One out faster.
Oh wow, I think this map is really great for Sleeper. Yr and the Nhhngr allows Sleeper to unleash their specialty units faster. Guardian under the lake can allow you to move monsters closer for your GOO to capture. Barrier of Naach Tith can help give you time to build up your retinue of monsters.
The Tcho Tcho can really struggle with this map, you can’t hide far away from everyone else, instead you must become more aggressive knowing you’ll be attacked early and often. Barrier can help with this, but personally I like Larvae or Yr and the Nhhngr, either of which works well with your goals.
Windwalker is very interesting. Start at the square that isn’t the oubliette, then use your silence token to have your custodian sweep your units into the oubliette. Tada! Create a gate and you’re now got one of the hardest spellbooks for you to gain.
I often feel like playing this map is like playing 3 dimensional chess, you have to constantly visualize and count how far away every other unit is from each of your units, it definitely can add to the stress level of the game.
Having said that, I really love how suddenly with just a few tweaks, you’re able to experience this very different game.