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Rating: 7.8 Very Good
Players: 1-8 players
Playing time: 120-240 minutes

Official Site: Official website at FFG

Created by: Richard Launius, Kevin Wilson, Anders Finér, Rafał Hrynkiewicz, Henning Ludvigsen, Kurt Miller, Scott Nicely, Brian Schomburg

Published by: ADC Blackfire Entertainment, Arclight, Delta Vision Publishing

Alternate Names: Horreur à Arkham, Horror w Arkham, Rettegés Arkhamban, Ужас Аркхэма, アーカムホラー


Arkham Horror is a cooperative adventure and horror board game. The game is set in the fictional town of Arkham, Massachusetts, made famous by H.P. Lovecraft in his writings about the Cthulhu Mythos.

Players take the role of investigators exploring the city, encountering places, people, and creatures both normal and mundane.

Through these adventures, the investigators hope to gain the clues and resources needed to confront and ultimately thwart the Mythos threat.

Early in the game, investigators seek to avoid more powerful monsters while moving around the city to gather weapons, spells, clues, and other items they will need. Later, the investigators attempt to close a few gates and seal some of the most active gates.

Finally, once several gates have been sealed and the investigators have acquired valuable weapons, spells, clues, and allies, they make one last, desperate assault on the Mythos, attempting to close or seal the final gates.

Retail Price:$45
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Tric Trac Nominee 2007
Golden Geek Best Gamer's Board Game Nominee 2006

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Game Components

  • 1 Game Board & 5 Dice
  • 1 First Player Marker
  • 16 Investigator Sheets
  • 16 Investigator Markers
  • 16 Plastic Investigator Stands
  • 196 Investigator Status Tokens
  • 189 Investigator Cards
  • 8 Ancient One Sheets
  • 20 Doom Tokens
  • 179 Ancient One Cards
  • 60 Monster Markers
  • 16 Gate Markers
  • 3 Activity Markers
  • 3 Explored Markers
  • 1 Terror Track Marker
  • 6 Closed Markers
  • 1 Rule Book


Follow the steps below to prepare for a game of Arkham Horror.

1. Prepare Playing Area

Unfold the board and place it in the center of the playing area. Make sure there is ample space around the edges of the board to place the investigator sheets and card decks. Place the various tokens and the dice near the board. Make sure to place the terror track marker on the "0" space on the terror track. …

These are the basic abilities investigators use to accomplish things in the game. Every investigator has six skills, listed below. Investigators also have a value for each of these skills, depending on how they have positioned their skill sliders. A skill value represents the number of dice the investigator rolls for a check based on that skill.

Fight: Used for physical feats of strength and endurance. Also used in combat.

Lore: Used for tests of mystic knowledge and ability. Also used in casting spells. …

When an investigator attempts to move out of an area containing a monster, or ends his movement in such an area, he must either fight the monster or evade it.

An investigator may attempt to evade a monster by making an Evade check. An Evade check is a skill check using the investigator's Sneak value. The check is modified by the monster's Awareness value, which is printed in the upper-right corner of the monster marker's movement side. The difficulty of the Evade check is always 1 unless the monster has a special ability that states otherwise. …

Eventually, all investigators have to face their fears and do battle with the Mythos. Whenever an investigator enters combat with a monster, resolve the following steps, in order.

I. Horror Check

First, the alien nature of the Mythos threatens to overwhelm the investigator's mind. This is represented by a Horror check.

A Horror check is a skill check using the investigator's Will value. This value is modified by the monster's horror rating (found in the lower-left corner of its combat side). …

This section of the rules describes the various conditions that may affect an investigator during the course of the game.

Sanity and Stamina

An investigator begins the game with a number of Sanity and Stamina tokens equal to the values listed on the investigator's sheet. These two values are the investigator's maximum Sanity and maximum Stamina. While an investigator may gain and lose Sanity or Stamina over the course of the game, the investigator's current Sanity or Stamina may never exceed the investigator's maximum Sanity or Stamina. …

As dimensional gates open in locations all over Arkham, the investigators must work to close or seal them.

Closing Gates

Before he can close a gate, an investigator must enter the gate, explore the Other World it leads to, and then return to Arkham.

When an investigator returns from an Other World, as described earlier, the player should place an explored marker under his investigator marker. This gives the investigator an opportunity to destroy and close the gate during the next Arkham Encounters Phase. If the investigator leaves the gate's location for any reason, the player must discard the explored marker - the investigator has missed his opportunity and must explore the gate again if he wishes to close it. …

The terror track shows the current terror level in Arkham - the current mental state of the city's inhabitants. Various things can raise the terror level, such as too many monsters entering the Outskirts or the effects of some Mythos cards. The terror level can never go down, so players should be very cautious about allowing it to increase.

When the terror level rises, move the terror track marker up the terror track as indicated. The terror track marker cannot leave the track, so the terror level cannot go above 10. …

No matter how valiantly the investigators struggle, they are facing incredible odds. Despite their best efforts, the Ancient One may awaken and enter Arkham. If this comes to pass, the only thing the investigators can do is try to drive it back using the weapons and magic they've accumulated throughout the game.

There are five conditions under which the Ancient One may awaken.

1. Doom Track is Full

If enough gates open, eventually the Ancient One's doom track will fill up with doom tokens, even if the investigators use all of the elder signs. When a doom token is placed on the last open space on the doom track, the Ancient One awakens immediately. …

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