Insight. Tactic.

__Cost: 1. __XP: 1.
__Test Icons:

Fast. Play when you would discard a treachery card after resolving any of its effects.

Put "Fool me once..." into play in your play area and attach that treachery to it.

When any investigator draws a copy of the attached treachery card, discard "Fool me once...": Cancel that card's revelation effect.

Patrick McEvoy
A Thousand Shapes of Horror #156.
"Fool me once..."

A beautiful synergy with Diana Stanley:

Her Twilight Blade allows her to re-play events and skills from under her - however the blade explicitly states that the card cannot then go back under Diana when "playing or committing a card in this way". However, the cancellation effect of "Fool me once..." does not happen during the play action - it happens at a later stage, when a subsequent copy of that treachery is drawn, meaning you can trigger Diana's again at this point!

This means you can infinitely recur this card in the following steps:

  1. You resolve the effects of a treachery.
  2. You play "Fool me once..." to put it into your play area.
  3. A copy of that treachery is drawn and therefore is cancelled, triggering Diana's effect. The card is placed under Diana and she gets a card and a resource.
  4. Later, you resolve the effects of another treachery.
  5. You exhaust Twilight Blade to play "Fool me once..." from under Diana, placing it in your play area.
  6. Repeat from step 3!

It took me playing three whole campaigns as Diana before I noticed this synergy. You could say... fool me thrice.

snacc · 410
This is also true of Delay the Inevitable, which I find to be a better interaction. Drawing 4 or 6 of the same treachery in a game is not something that happens consistently, and for Diana it means forgoing the cancellation of any one of those draws with something that immediately cancels, like Ward. — StyxTBeuford · 12435
Well if you're playing 1 or 2 player then you're probably right. However at higher player counts (3 or 4), you'll definitely be seeing the same treachery multiple times in a game. — snacc · 410
Regarding your second point about forgoing other cancels: you only have two copies of ward so you can't cancel every card in every mythos phase. Every other treachery that you do not cancel is an opportunity to play this card instead. — snacc · 410
Right, but there are a lot of cancel options for Diana. You have to pick and choose which ones are worth running, and even in multiplayer Im not so certain this is worth it. Fool me once is actually a card I like more for keeping a card out of the deck permanently, and Diana’s function for it is different. In draw heavy decks, it can completely remove a weakness. — StyxTBeuford · 12435
In my Diana plays (and I played her more than any other investigator, even released my first decks now for her) I don't find the Twilight Blade early enough in many games, to make these kind of combos likely. They are sure great and fun, if they work, and "Fool me once" cheaper than "Delay the Inevitable", but I prefere more consistently reliable cancel or ignore cards. — Susumu · 127
If you're having trouble getting the Twilight Blade, i'd highly recommend using 2 copies of Backpack(2). It really helps to make Diana feel more consistent. — snacc · 410
... or instead of two copies of Backpack, just try two copies of 0XP Prepared for the Worst. I find loads of dilemmas when spending XP for Diana. I don't often run many items or supply events. You don't tend to need the Twilight blade early on, it has much more benefit later in the game (once you've used up a bit of your deck and have a few cards under Diana's card). So finding one of the three cards (Blade, Prepared, Prepared) in the top half of your deck is quite likely, and 9 cards is sufficient searching when you have half a deck. this is more of a comment on Diana and not really to do with "fool me once" - Sorry ! :-) — Phoenixbadger · 158

"Fool me once..." is an alright card if played fairly, for it purpose of cancelling a future encounter card - it comes cheaper than Ward of Protection (since you don't have to pay a horror), but costs an extra XP and has more stringent restrictions on when it can cancel a card. Other reviews give more in-depth descriptions of this.

However, there's an important (perhaps unintended) usage of this card: unlike most treachery-interaction cards, this one doesn't specify that it only applies to non-weakness treacheries, so you can use it to trap a weakness to avoid redrawing it when you reshuffle your deck.

Most Guardians don't really have the draw to take advantage of this, but this effect can be especially strong in Joe Diamond, who does have access to the tools needed to repeatedly draw his deck, and this can let you really easily facilitate infinite combos, even if you draw a particularly nasty weakness (such as Amnesia).

Tskami · 14
That's especially juicy if your team happens to draw duplicate random basic weaknesses. — Yenreb · 9

"Fool me once..." offers a similar promise to Mystic staple Ward of Protection of protecting you and your party from dangerous treachery effects. I say "staple", but actually I've recently gone a little cold for Ward because it turns out taking a horror along with spending a card and a resource is a fairly steep price against most treacheries, although it sometimes is worth it to protect vulnerable teammates or to just cancel the harsher treacheries, such as Ancient Evils. How does "Fool me once..." compare?

"Fool me once..." still costs a card and a resource, and while it doesn't deal you horror out of hand like Ward does, it does demand you actually resolve and discard a treachery in order to prevent a future copy of it. Now, you'll still count as having resolved the Revelation ability on a treachery that you passed a skill test for; the good news is in theory "Fool me once..." sometimes costs you merely a card and a resource, but this means you'll have to suffer at least one Ancient Evils in order to cancel the next one. Additionally, this card demands that you resolve the treachery to be cancelled, and not a teammate - so you have to draw it before they do if your intentions are selfless.

On top of that, not all treacheries with dangerous Revelation effects actually discard themselves until they're already done hurting you pretty bad, such as Dunwich encounter spoiler and Circle Undone encounter spoiler. Ward of Protection does better against those, and is generally much more flexible in what it can cancel. It has been pointed out that you can "trap" a treachery attached to "Fool me once..." by keeping it in play so that it doesn't shuffle back into the encounter deck, but unless you were highly likely to draw that treachery twice again during the scenario, you were just as good if not better cancelling a second copy with "Fool me once..."'s reaction.

So, when is "Fool me once..." good? I think much like Ward of Protection, this card isn't going to be something you spend experience on for all investigators for whom it is available. You ought to have a good idea of why you're buying "Fool me once..." and the kinds of treacheries you intend to use it to fight. You might for instance take this if you or a teammate is particularly weak to willpower treacheries. Notably, "Fool me once..." is likely to overperform in The Forgotten Age (perhaps this is being alluded to in the art?) due to the Explore mechanic allowing you to dig for treacheries early in the scenario.

Additionally, the more teammates you have, the greater the likelihood that the same treachery is drawn repeatedly before the scenario ends. In a 3 or 4 player group, "Fool me once..." goes especially well with First Watch and "Let me handle this!" to really control the Mythos phase and improve the odds of you drawing the treachery you want to cancel before someone else does. Obviously this synergy is going to be most effective in investigators equipped to take on multiple encounter cards, which typically means those with high willpower - so Zoey Samaras, Leo Anderson, and particularly Diana Stanley who loves that magic word "cancel".

Even if this card is as situational as I believe it is, it's still nice to see the Guardian archetype of protectively tackling encounter cards continue to be fleshed out, and I'm definitely a fan of the concept and theming.

Trinity_ · 170
It's a very hard card to maneuver around in my experience. Ancient Evils even requires that you draw one of the copies. I think it works best in Guardians who can Stick to the Plan and increase the number of encounters they see with this "in hand". — StyxTBeuford · 12435
This is good in TCU cause the encounter deck mills itself to trigger effects when it runs out. Also fool me once can be used on treachery weaknesses — Django · 3498
I actually find it's really bad in TCU despite the encounter milling because so many of the treacheries are sticky to begin with. The discard clause just doesn't activate nearly as often as you think it would. Hitting a weakness in your deck to keep it from cycling is good, but only if you're playing a very cycle heavy deck, which in Guardian or sub-Guardian right now I think is mostly limited to Roland? — StyxTBeuford · 12435
Joe can draw lots with access to seeker 5 — Django · 3498
Sure but I don't like this in Joe for several reasons. As a hunch it's near useless since it's not in play during the Mythos phase. As a maindeck card you're still reliant on finding this card (easier in Seekers sure) and then discarding the treachery while this is in your hand, which, the lower your willpower, the harder that is to do. Sure, you can counter one Rotting Remains if you happen to draw two of them, but you could just as well throw in another ally or some healing into your deck. Take the Initiative works better than this in most cases. — StyxTBeuford · 12435
Note that you don't have to be the one to *draw* the encounter the first time; you have to be the one to *discard* it. For treacheries that go in the threat area and are cleared with an action, you can play "Fool me once..." as long as you're the one to discard it, regardless of who drew it. — Yenreb · 9
Yes, but realistically Joe still can’t do much with that. — StyxTBeuford · 12435

Don’t forget, it’s not only the future card that you cancel, but the existing card is also removed from the deck while waiting for future nastiness. Some of the nastiest scenarios in the game have ancient evils and the encounter discard pile gets shuffled back into the deck one or more times. So this card takes Ancient evils (or other doom-applying card effects) out, making the encounter deck lovely and cuddly when reshuffled.

I wonder what happens with this card for surge cards. I know you can't cancel the surge, but if its a truly horrible one (say some of the peril surge doom-adding cards early on in The Forgotten Age), then could you discard and cancel the revelation effects of the card with a Ward of Protection, but because the surge keyword does have an effect, you could also play Fool me Once..., to protect against a future version of the card (in the case of a peril card, clearly only works if you are the one to draw it a second time)

If that does count, then you could even play that very same "Fool me once..." again, if you are playing Diana and have the twilight blade in play?

1) Draw the first encounter card (a treachery one) with a surge effect (and a nasty revelation effect). Resolve any effects

2) Play "Fool me once..." and attach the nasty encounter card to it.

... play a few more rounds...

3) Eventually draw a second nasty treachery card of the same type.

4) Trigger the reaction ability on "Fool me once..." - cancel the card's revelation effect.

5) Trigger Diana's ability to put the "Fool me once..." card underneath Diana (draw a card and resource)

6) Resolve the treachery card's surge effect. (note the rules do specifically use the word resolve for the surge keyword)

7) Get to the point where you are about to discard the treachery card in question.

8) Trigger the reaction ability on Twilight Blade to place "Fool me once..." in your play area and attach the treachery to it.

Any thoughts on that ?

Phoenixbadger · 158
Note* do not cuddle the encounter deck, very dangerous — StyxTBeuford · 12435
Needs the GW Bush quote. — MrGoldbee · 1046
There’s an old saying in Tennessee — StyxTBeuford · 12435
...you can't get fooled again. This effect is really good in TCU, where you lock down Daemonic Piping/Terror in the Night/Ultimate Chaos and prevent the set of 3 from ever being completed. — suika · 7593
Make sure to use card sleeves if you do cuddle the deck. Thanks for safety reminder StyxTBeauford — Phoenixbadger · 158
Absolutely, but as we all know, abstinence is the only guaranteed way to protect yourself. — StyxTBeuford · 12435
Cuddling the encounter deck is why Cthulhu created cuddlefish. — LivefromBenefitSt · 626

Useful, but hard to deckbuild. slots, while not as contested as, say, deckslots, dont have too much space for tertiary strategies. If you do afford the deckslot for "Fool me once..." its a useful but not terrific card. Diana Stanley loves her some cancels though, so keep this in mind for her.

The mechanics speak for themselves, (although keep in mind that the card is played on treacheries -while they are being discarded-, keep that in mind if you want to hit something like Frozen in Fear), but the inability to surgically hit whichever treachery you like is a drawback. Think of it this way: Sometimes you play Ward of Protection against Rotting Remains to cover someone for whom a failed check equals defeat, but usually you dont block a minor treachery like Rotting Remains at all. "Fool me once..." doesnt have this precision. The most bang for your buck is hitting treacheries that are universally bad, Ancient Evils for example.

Obviously a greater playercount increases mythos drawspeed, so the usefulness goes up a bit, but in this case the chance of you personally encountering the desired target (a requirement for playing "Fool me once...") goes down dramatically, so that in of itself is a problem too.

"Fool me once..." is'nt bad, but it's largely inferior to similar mechanics and it's costing space and resources in a faction that often struggles to generate resources and cards. You will be forgiven for not ever trying this thing out.

Tsuruki23 · 1989

The Guardian's answer to Ward of Protection. While this doesn't cancel the effect of the card drawn by the playing investigator, the ability to block the next copy can be very valuable, especially for treacheries that stack and build up or draw out a scenario enemy (such as Daemonic Piping) or generally annoying treacheries like Ancient Evils. In a 3 or 4 player group where you are cycling through the encounter deck fairly quickly, this is a strong addition for those who can take, and all for only 1 XP!

c-hung · 3
Daemonic Piping is actually a bad example here, since the treachery has to be discarded first. By the time Piper of Azathoth is discarded, it's generally already gone and summoned the Piper. — Abodmuthkat · 159
That said, an interesting note here is that the cancellation effect is optional. So if you did manage to discard it (maybe with Alter Fate), you can choose to keep it trapped instead of cancelling other copies of it. — Abodmuthkat · 159
Except Daemonic Piping would still be in play, and thus trigger the summoning if all three go up. That said, Terror in the Night is countered by this. — Abodmuthkat · 159
Ah, good catch. OK, so maybe can't tie up every treachery card, but still very handy to have to block a number of annoying treacheries at low cost. — c-hung · 3
Could Diana counter a treachery with ward of protection and then use this card to counter later versions of it? — crayne · 3
Only if you resolved any of its effects (which could include Surge I believe), otherwise no. So Warding an Ancient Evils doesn't let you FMO the next one. Personally I have a really low opinion on this card because of how reliant it is on being drawn early and how many high impact treacheries don't discard initially or at all in some cases, especially in TCU. — StyxTBeuford · 12435
Like Terrot in the Night could be countered by this, sure, but that's only relevant in terms of reshuffles anyway- if you passed one Terror in the Night test to even trigger FMO in the first place, you're fairly unlikely to have to worry about all 3 copies ever being in play at once, so FMO's very unlikely to have any effect at all. — StyxTBeuford · 12435
It seems like a super niche card, for sure. Can it counter weaknesses? If so, Lola might have some use for it, maybe. Or in some campaigns, where everyone gains a copy of the same weakness at some point? Other than that , maybe it's a card for 'treacheries-drawn-in-weird-circumstances". Like you could use it to put a stop to "draw the top omen in the discard pile". Or for exploration treacheries? Like it seems like a decent answer to that one endlessly annoying card for the Boundary Beyond. Other than that, it seems expensive in xp and deck-slots for the amount of conditions you have to meet to use it effectively. — bee123 · 24
It does work on weaknesses, so a Mr. Rook deck could use it to kill a weakness permanently for deckcycling. Funny enough this works with Dirge of Reason but not with Cover Up, so the version of Roland you use matters. — StyxTBeuford · 12435
I agree Explore makes sense to use this on. Timeline Destabilization seems like a bad target though since failing it doesnt cause it to discard. Works well with Window to Another Time however. — StyxTBeuford · 12435
Yeah, that discard condition is far more obnoxious than it seems. So many important treacheries don't discard, and a lot of weaknesses don't either. But yeah, it seems like a Circle Undone card with the stacking treacheries but I think TFA is its campaign if anything is. Exploration, the poison treacheries, some City of archives stuff too, but even then it can't get at other people's peril cards , can it? It's sooooo situational :( — bee123 · 24
Yeah it only attaches on something you draw. Then it becomes useful towards anyone else drawing it, but that initial condition and timing is harsher than I think people seem to think it is. — StyxTBeuford · 12435
I use this card with Diana and believe that " resolving any of its effects" includes no effect after being cancelled by ward of protection. This works well with daemonic piping also as you would discard it once the revelation effect is cancelled by a ward. — Head Rat · 1
Surge applies after the card's revelation effect and the card is discarded (unless otherwise stated), so if you cancel the revelation effect then when you discard the card you haven't resolved any of its effects yet. Then surge applies. — Yenreb · 9
I used this in a Diana deck in the back stretch of a 4-player Carcosa campaign followed by Blob, not expecting much out of it, and was pleasantly surprised. Assuming we correctly interpreted the card interactions btwn this + Diana's face ability + her dagger, it was a nice little engine in the tail end of our run. To me, it seems like this is a decent pick for Diana later if you have covered more important XP cards and have extra XP to burn. — KillerShrike · 1
I’m — Phoenixbadger · 158
Oops. I’m Phoenixbadger. But also i’m running Diana through TFA with Finn, he’s pretty rubbish at lots of encounters, so I’ve picked it straight away along with 2xp ward of protection, so maximum opportunities to cancel. In fact you can (I think) cancel a really horrible surge card revelation effect with Ward, but use “fool me once” because “surge” is one of the effects. — Phoenixbadger · 158