Eldritch horror is a board game that 1-8 players can play. This game involves the skills of cooperative gaming, problem-solving, and strategic thinking. With the wide range of board games in the market, we see many categories of them eldritch horror falls into the category of horror games. Players explore a world filled with mythos horrors. They travel the globe urgently, needing to save the world from an ancient evil. This is an excellent game for all the horror and adventure freaks.

Aim of the Game

Eldritch horror is a cooperative board game. The win or loss is achieved together as a team. They achieve it by solving mysteries to chase away the ancient ones from the world. On your journey of solving the mystery, you will encounter many hurdles in the form of gates.

eldritch horror

Game Content

Eldritch horror consists of these components. It is quite a significant number compared to what other board game includes. Let us see what this horror game has.

  • Game board
  • Reference guide
  • Investigator sheets – 12
  • Ancient one sheets – 4
  • Encounter cards – 122
  • Mythos cards – 51
  • Mystery cards – 16
  • Artifact cards – 14
  • Assets cards – 40
  • Condition cards – 36
  • Spell cards – 20
  • Monster tokens – 43
  • Mystery token – 1
  • Clue tokens – 36
  • Rumor tokens – 4
  • Omen token – 1
  • Doom token – 1
  • Gate token – 9
  • Lead investigator token – 1
  • Travel ticket token – 20
  • Improvement tokens – 30
  • Eldritch tokens – 20
  • Sanity and healthy tokens – 70
  • Reference cards – 4
  • Active expedition token – 1
  • Dice – 4

How to Setup the Game?

Before playing this game, you must arrange its tabletop setup. Let’s see how it is done.

  • Unfold the game board and place it on the tabletop as easily accessible to all the players.
  • You need to organize the tokens as below.
  1. Randomize the 9 gate tokens to create the gate stack. Then place them facedown at an easily reachable spot for all the players.
  2. Create a general token pool with the following tokens. Then place them in piles.
  • Rumor
  • Mystery
  • Eldritch
  • Travel ticket
  • Improvement
  • Sanity
  • Health
  • Discuss and decide on one player to receive the lead investigator token. If you cannot decide, choose by rolling dice or any other method.
  • Each player chooses one investigator, starting from the lead investigator clockwise. Then they grab the relevant investigator sheet and place the matching token on the board. The token is mentioned on the back of the relevant sheet.
  • Receive possessions as mentioned on your investigator sheet
  1. Each player receives the assets that are mentioned on their sheet. Then he picks the matching card from the box. He also takes a certain number of healthy and sanity tokens to the maximum mentioned amount in front of the investigator sheet.
  • Select one of the ancient one-sheets. There are 4 sheets, and each of them gives a different experience.
  • Collect all the non-monster tokens and have them in a bowl or a box. Then shake the container to shuffle and randomize the tokens. Refrain from mixing the epic monster tokens here.
  • Once you choose a particularly ancient one, you need to return all the research encounter cards, unique encounter cards, and mystery cards that do not match or are irrelevant to the chosen one. They will not be used in this game with that particular ancient one.
  • Then shuffle and place the following cards in separate decks.
  1. Expedition encounter cards
  2. Spell cards
  3. Condition cards
  4. Mythos cards

Apart from the above cards, you need to separate all the other cards into decks and shuffle them.

  • Build your mythos deck as mentioned in the chosen ancient one sheet.
  • Place the reference cards corresponding to the number of players. This is placed near the mythos deck; players can refer to this when resolving the mythos effect. Return the other cards to the box.
  • Place the doom token on the relevant doom track as mentioned in your ancient one sheet.
  • Keep the omen token on the green space of the omen track.
  • Place the top four asset cards on the four slots of the reserve.

Place all the other cards in the relevant places on the board. That is either mentioned on the token board or the ancient one.

  • Mystery cards should be placed near the ancient ones. Resolve any mystery when this card enters the play effect mentioned on the card.

How to Play the Game?

This horror game is played in 3 stages.

  1. Action – players perform actions to move around the game board and prepare for the tasks ahead.
  2. Encounter – in this stage, investigators fight monsters or resolve encounter cards.
  3. Mythos – in this level, the lead investigator resolves one mythos card. These cards advance to the doom token or gates challenging the investigators to overcome the challenges. At the end of this level, the lead investigator may pass his lead token to any of the players of his choice. Then a new game round begins with the action stage.

Action Stage

During this phase, each player resolves two actions. The lead investigator starts this by performing two actions of his choice.

The following are the actions that can be performed during this stage.

  • Travel action – moves the investigator token to any adjacent space. They need to use a travel path spending travel ticket. It can either be train or ship, and the relevant tickets are needed to be used.
  • Rest action – recovers 1 health and 1 sanity token. This cannot be claimed if there is a monster in his space.
  • Trade action – investigators can trade their possessions like assets, travel tickets, spells, and others to another investigator.

Encounter Stage

In this stage, each investigator resolves an encounter. This is reading the short narrative which is on the encounter card. There are two types of encounters,

  • Combat encounter – if there are one or more monsters in the particular player’s space, he needs to resolve combat encounters for each monster. One at a time according to his choice. If it is all done, he needs to complete another encounter.
  • Location encounter – the player selects an encounter card that matches his space’s artwork. Then he resolves it.
  • Token encounter – a few types of tokens allow the players to resolve encounters related to that. The following are the types.
  1. Clue token
  2. Gate token
  3. Active expedition token
  4. Rumor token
  5. Defeated investigator token

Mythos Stage

In this phase, the lead investigator draws a mythos card on top and resolves it. Investigators resolve only the effects that are mentioned on the current card. The following are the effects of mythos cards.

  • Resolve effect
  • Place eldritch tokens
  • Place rumor token
  • Spawn clues
  • Monster surge
  • Spawn gates
  • Resolve reckoning effects
  • Advance omen

How does the game end?

Investigators end the game when all the mysteries are solved for the relevant ancient one. This is the won stage. But there can be instances where the game is lost. These are such instances.

  • If there is a need to grab a mythos card, the mythos deck is empty.
  • Some rumor mythos card effects cause the game to end.
  • If all the investigators are out of the game.
  • Suppose the doom token reaches the zero level of the doom track. In this instance, it is known as ancient one awakens. In each ancient one sheet, it is mentioned how the game is lost.


Eldritch horror is a board game with broad content. It will take a few hours to start from scratch and end the game. The gameplay will be fascinating.

You may also read about a fantastic game Rento.


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