Creatures in the Ice

Set Size7
Number of unique Cards3
RoleEnemy, Tekeli-li
Threat LevelMedium
# of scenarios3
Appears in: Ice and Death #1, Ice and Death #3, City of Elder Things (v2, v3),

My take on this set: The first third of the Edge of the Earth campaign doesn’t really throw a lot of enemies at the players, but makes up for it by having these enemies pack more of a punch than usual. The Creatures in the Ice set is the one that provides much of the enemy cards for Ice and Death and thus sets the tone for what this campaign has in store for us: Enemies with 3 and 4 health that require some effort to take out. A heavy focus on the Tekeli-li weaknesses that are shuffled into the player decks at every opportunity. And a treachery that keys off of those.
It’s a tough and impactful set that doesn’t lose its bite later in the campaign either. When the set gets used in the City of Elder Things, i’d usually rather draw an Elder Thing than an Ice Creature.

Number in the encounter deck: 3

What it does: A medium sized Hunter creature with 3s across the stat line and that deals a damage and a horror on attack. Its attacks are further enhanced by an ability that makes the attacked investigator shuffle the top two Tekeli-li cards into their deck.

My take: This is a respectable enemy, especially considering that it’s in the set three times. In the scenarios its in, you meet this a decent amount and it’s one of the major reasons why you will want to have 3 damage attacks available for this campaign.
Getting hit by the Manifestation of Madness can hurt a lot, even if it’s not all immediate damage/horror. The two weakness cards that are shuffled in will cost a draw later on and might also have other repercussions that are more annoying than just that bit of damage and horror from the attack. So it’s best to just immediately dispose of this enemy instead of evading it and letting it do its Hunter thing.

Threat level: Medium. This enemy does set the baseline for what the fighter needs to routinely be able to handle in Edge. It’s a baseline that’s quite a bit higher than usual.

Dealing with it: Priority #1: Don’t let it attack you. Kill it when it pops up, which shouldn’t be too hard considering it only has middling fight that any fighter is able to overcome. Doing so with a three damage attack kills it cleanly in one attack, so if you are able to do that, go for it. Ice and Death #3 has these spawn on the other side of the map in Hunter mode, so you’ll need to be even more proactive there.

Number in the encounter deck: 2

What it does: With 4 fight and stamina, the Glacial Phantasm is a notable enemy. If it is ready at at the end of the enemy phase (so if it didn’t attack and also wasn’t evaded), it moves towards the location with the most investigators, then causes each investigator at its location or a connected one to shuffle the top Tekeli-li card into their deck. It does have a low evasion of only 2, which can be exploited to exhaust the creature and therefore also disable the move and Tekeli-li effects.

My take: Ugh, these are painful. They are difficult enough to kill that it might just take a full turn away. Their low evasion is tempting, but a trap if you plan on running away from them. Having these move around and add Tekeli-li weaknesses to player’s decks can get out of hand fast. I frequently felt like this was one of the worst things in the encounter deck, always hogging a whole lot of attention.
The one saving grace here is that its movement ability works differently than Hunter and that’s in the players favor. The main difference is that it wont attack you in the same turn it moved into your location. It will spread weaknesses based on the new location though! Also, since it exhausts to attack, it won’t be able to give you weaknesses if it attacks you, something that might just be the better alternative in some cases.

Threat level: Mid to High. They are a step below what usually appears as Elite enemies, but these are nonetheless a huge issue and a priority to take out.

Dealing with it: Depending on the layout for City of the Elder Things, running away from these might be an option, but less so for Ice and Death. Of course Ice and Death #3 requires you to kill them, so there’s not even a real choice, but #1 also doesn’t really have room to keep these at distance. The map is way too interconnected. The best course of action is likely to just go in guns blazing and take this thing down with whatever you’ve got. The four fight and four health will make this not a trivial matter, but it probably can’t be helped. The abilities on the enemy are disabled while exhausted, so if you are close to finishing the scenario, having someone evade the eidolon can buy the time to finish up without having to take more weaknesses into your deck.
Well, or just be a survivor and Waylay the thing!

Number in the encounter deck: 2

What it does: Kindred Mist attaches to the nearest location without the other copy already attached, so usually at the location of whoever drew the card. While at Kindred Mists’ location, each investigator who would shuffle a Tekeli-li card into their deck has to immediately draw it, resolve it, then place it at the bottom of their deck.
Kindred Mist only discards at the end of a round if its Forced effect was able to trigger.

My take: I don’t think this card is all that threatening. At best, it might make you trigger an extra Tekeli-li or two. While that would be a fine effect for a treachery, it isn’t guaranteed at all and sort of easy to play around in most cases.
The only situations where this can become more annoying is when you have Zero Visibility from the Ice and Death specific set in your threat area.

Threat level: Low. Fairly easy to avoid and even when it triggers, it’s unlikely to be all that punishing.

Dealing with it: There are two things that let Kindred Mist have at least some teeth: One, it only discards when it actually triggers, unlike many others used in Edge that just discard at the end of a round. Two, it can work with any source of Tekeli-li cards, not just those from this set. And there’s a lot of those sources going around. So if you find yourself with this in a cramped environment or needing to revisit some spot more often, Kindred Mist could turn out to become something that is just not possible to avoid. However, that situation won’t come up too often in the wide areas of the Ice and Death map and in the large City of the Elder Things.

4 Replies to “Creatures in the Ice”

  1. Great article as always. Couple corrections though, you mention glacial phantasms disengaging and moving away from investigators, but since enemies exhaust after attacking even if you cancel the attack this should essentially never happen. And in the dealing with it section you refer to glacial phantasm as a manifestation.

    1. Right, enemies exhaust to attack. It’s so unusual to have to actually care about that. I suppose that also means they don’t spew Tekeli-li weaknesses at you if they attack. I actually didn’t pick up on that. I’ll edit a few things, thanks.

  2. The strangest thing about this encounter set is its completely non-indicative symbol. It feels like the artist was given a misleading art description and it never got double-checked. I know arachnophobes who were seriously worried when they saw the it’s-clearly-a-realistic-spider symbol, when in reality the cards look nothing like that, instead being tendril-amoeba things. Just bizarre.

    1. I have this weird issue with EotE where too many of the encounter symbols just look the same to me at a glance. It’s such a minor thing to get hung up on, but i feel like the symbols are kinda bad in this campaign.

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