Hazards of Antarctica

Set Size5
Number of unique Cards2
RoleAgility, Damage, Horror
Threat LevelMid to High
# of scenarios4
Appears in: Ice and Death #1, #2 and #3, Forbidden Peaks

My take on this set: Ice Shaft towers high above the other card in this set. This new variant of Grasping Hands is an influential card that can threaten a big chunk of damage even to investigators with high agility and stamina.
Hazards of Antarctica shares is used in exactly the same scenarios as Deadly Weather and like the cards in that set it also consists only of Hazards. It can really just be understood as an extension of that Deadly Weather, there’s no actual difference between how the two sets are handled by the campaign setup.

Number in the encounter deck: 3

What it does: After failing an agility test, the investigator has to take 2 damage. Additionally, for each frost token that was revealed during the test, another damage is dealt, even if the test succeeded.

My take: Ice Shaft is this campaigns version of Grasping Hands and can treated much the same way. However, it does crank up the potential hurt quite severely. For one, the additional damage from Frost tokens can make Ice Shaft deal up to 4 damage. Also, the damage no longer scales with how much the test failed by, giving less of a chance to at least partially mitigate the effect.
This is a very influential card and depending on your investigators, it (and its partner in crime, Dark Aurora) can be a main reason to keep Frost tokens out of the chaos bag. The possibility of drawing two frost tokens can give an additional chance to autofail this test, dealing 4 damage even to high agility investigators. And drawing a single frost token will deal damage, even if the test succeeded.

Threat level: High. A lot of damage from one common card in a campaign that is already not holding back on that front.

Dealing with it: For several investigators with low stamina and agility, this card can be a huge issue. And since its a very common card for the whole first half of the campaign, that’s something that players need to plan for when building decks for those investigators. The trouble with doing so is that having high agility doesn’t even protect from this damage burst perfectly. If there’s a lot of Frost tokens in the bag, failing the test from drawing two Frosts is a real possibility and no amount of agility will stop that. So there’s no way around packing additional sources of soak and/or healing. If you are worried about this treachery, you’ll probably want to bring Dr Mala Sinha with you, if available. Claypool is a viable alternative as well. Also consider Protective Gear, which can just outright cancel this Hazard.
And keep those Frosts away from the chaos bag as good as you can. Luckily, this card is only present in the first four scenarios, so there should be (relatively!) few Frosts going around still.

Number in the encounter deck: 2

What it does: Through the Ice attaches to the nearest location that doesn’t already have a copy, which will usually be the location of the investigator who drew the card. Whenever a player tries to move in or out of Through the Ice’s location, they have to pass an agility test. Should they fail, the move is cancelled (the action is lost) and they have to take a damage and a horror.
Through the Ice is only discarded when someone failed an agility test, otherwise it sticks around.

My take: Damage and horror when it triggers, and a lost action on top. That’s certainly above average and the card also interacts with other things going on in the relevant scenarios.
The agility test is easy, but for some investigators it’s still going to be enough to catch them. Just like the Hazards from the Deadly Weather, this card gets a lot rougher in the Forbidden Peaks scenario when it stops you from going forwards or when someone gets affected by Zero Visibility in Ice and Death. Additionally, Through the Ice can stack up with one of the Deadly Weather cards for some extra awfulness.

Threat level: Low to Mid. Individually fine, but has a high potential to combine with other cards.

Dealing with it: If passing the test isn’t something you are able to do, then this might just be something to take on the chin. It’s probably not worth playing around it or using something like an Alter Fate on it. There’s more important things in those two scenarios. But if you are using Protective Gear or Roald Ellsworth anyways, then this can be worth a charge if losing the action would be too costly.

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