INWO Deck: Servants of Shangri-La


Cthulu likes to control violent things. This makes destroying easier. Up against the wall lets you win when you destroy government groups. Place government, peaceful, and violent in a deck, use all three special goals relating to these groups, so you can win any possible way. Add Shangri-La to the deck. Mix well.

Lead Illuminati

Servants of Cthulu





How you play this deck depends very much on the situation & the draw. First look at your first three plot cards. If you see Kindler & Gentler, Martyrs, etc. plan on playing peaceful. If you see terrorist nuke, etc. then maybe you'll play violent. Next look at the revealed Illuminati. If you see Shangri-La, you should almost certainly lead with the Vatican. Otherwise, New York is always a good choice, or even Evil Geniuses if you want to be different.

As the game develops, listen to your opponents talk about you. Figure out how they think you are going to win. Use the Crystal Skull to get cards to go a different way. Be on the lookout for your goal cards. If you get one and it is of no immediate use, DO NOT keep it in your hand; place it six or seven cards down in your deck; the crystal skull ensures that you will get it when you need it.

If you've lead with New York, play big & bully. Link the Necronomicon to New York. Play the Loan Sharks. Get Sadam Hussein, and/or the Supreme Court into play ASAP, along with MIC, no more annoying Nuclear Power Companies. If you are controlling big & violent, and no one seems to be stopping you, destroy your peaceful government groups (Japan, Supreme Court) as these let you win either with Hand of Madness OR Up against the Wall. If you think you cannot hold onto a group, destroy it yourself. Don't forget your rewriting history. Please note that many of your groups are valuable to others. Even if they get one of them frist, your agents combined with Necronomicon or Cyborg Soldiers should allow you to destroy it.

If there is no Shangri-La in the game, try to take over your peaceful groups, protect them, use Kindler & Gentler as if you are going to destroy something, then figure out loud that you don't have the power. When you've got enough peace, unmask as Shangri-La & win.

If Shangri-La is in the game, it is even more fun. As I mentioned before, make sure to lead with the Vatican. If you like, you can play your Shangri-La as agents, and use your peaceful agents to rip him to shreds. OR... Show him the Shangri-La out of your hand. Assure him that you are really on his side. Perhaps even give him a Nobel Peace Prize to show your goodwill. Convince him to help you take control of a peaceful group, OR, convince him to turn one of your Big groups peaceful. Reveal Kill for Peace and laugh evily.

The beauty of this deck is its flexibility. It can go many ways. The card that is CRITICAL to this flexibility is the Crystal Skull it lets you go through your plot deck getting the plots that are relevant based on what you think is what your opponents least expect. Get that out ASAP and save your protection cards for that.

Don't forget rewriting history. Remember, people EXPECT you to destroy things with Cthulu, if you destroy a couple of different alignments, they won't be counting, until you rewrite history, OMCL some group, destroy it, and play Up against the Wall.

The minute someone says that you're not playing like Cthulu is the moment to be very violent and destroy something. But make sure that you can use that something later.

Always be on the lookout for a Shangri-La win, particularly if there is no Shangri-La in the game, as then no one will be counting peaceful. Make a point of showing people your Hand of Madness (or just mention it, or just let them figure it out, since it's an obvious Cthulu goal). Reinforce that belief. Play Kinder & Gentler to get ready for a kill "next turn" Unmask.


Possible changes for greater effectiveness: Add Center for Weird Studies, removing either the Necronomicon or the Cyborg Soldiers.

Remove New Federal Budget & Tax Reform and replace with Power Grabs.

Replace Saddam Hussein with the KKK.

Final Comments

The only thing I would change would be to be on the lookout for weak violent groups (especially personalities) that are ill-defended, and make an effort to destroy them, especially if Shangri-La is in the game.

When Shangri-La is in the game, you should try to make him your ally. Convince him that it is easier to work toward your mutual goal if no one KNOWS you're really Shangri-La. Convince him to help you destroy something, anything (remember rewriting history) to throw people off the trail. Protect your Crystal Skull.

When Shagri-La is in the game, people are much more careful about playing big power cards. When they are not in the game, they are not so careful, and the opportunity for an unexpected win are there. In a game the other night, both my opponents were exhausted after taking the cyborg'ed New York from me.

With only the Goldfish Fanciers and the Red Cross left in my power structure, they saw no threat. On my turn, I nobel prized the peace corp, kindler & gentler'ed the cyborg'd new york on my opponents structure, OMCL the pentagon on another opponents structure, and that combined with Japan on an opponents structure, plus my groups, added up to more than enough when I unmasked. They were spent from the attack on New York, and had no action tokens to draw plots.

I won the game with two groups!

Created by Brian Malcolm

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