⌂ 2 Packs Deck Guide : Simple Dark Horse Rex Deck

Card draw simulator

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Derived from
None. Self-made deck here.
Inspiration for
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5argon · 3368

A deck intentionally filled with 0 or 1 costed cards, except Dark Horse, Hyperawareness, and Pickpocketing. A Seeker deck without Dr. Milan Christopher.

Use Hyperawareness as a way to spend your Upkeep resource to 0 to activate Dark Horse. If you trickle around 1 and 0 resources, then you can either 5 Evade or 6 once a turn. (You also have 2x Magnifying Glass to help boosting further, the upgraded version has no play cost.)

Pickpocketing and Rabbit's Foot are card draw counter of Rex's Curse that keeps coming back taking away your Upkeep draws. This deck has about 10 skill cards, drawing likely makes you better at future tests.

Seeking Answers and Mind over Matter are also 1 cost card great with Dark Horse. We also make use of Seeking Answers (2) upgrade in your Revised Core Set purchase. Rex's ability goes well with this card.

Dr. William T. Maleson again costs just 1 and also can play with Rex's ability when you put down a clue. You can picks 2 up together the next time or try Seeking Answers (2) to pick it back together with clues all around. Dropping a clue also enables Inquiring Mind.

The premium card in this deck is Cryptic Research. It can support your team's fighter to setup. Unlike high XP assets, 2x purchase (8 XP) of this fast and 0 cost Event will likely be played and see results as soon as you draws into them while not breaking your Dark Horse plan.

You can pair this deck with other decks that wants to take a shot at 2x Dr. Milan Christopher in the off-class slots. (My Jenny deck in the same series do that, by the way!)

► About "2 Packs Deck Guide"
 A series of decks made with the new distribution model in mind, requiring a Revised Core Set box + just 1 more Investigator Expansion box. ⌂ character on the deck's name means the additional box it uses is The Dunwich Legacy Investigator Expansion.
 It maximizes the chance of newcomers being able to build and learn to play the game, enjoying the story on Standard difficulty ASAP. They can then get into deck-building later if they wished to do so. See other decks in the "2 Packs Deck Guide" series here.

Upgrade guide

 Cost  Total
   Magnifying Glass    Magnifying Glass 1 XP 1 XP
   Magnifying Glass    Magnifying Glass 1 XP 2 XP
   Seeking Answers    Seeking Answers •• 2 XP 4 XP
   Seeking Answers    Seeking Answers •• 2 XP 6 XP
   Guts  →  Cryptic Research •••• 4 XP 10 XP
 ✮  Strange Solution  →  Cryptic Research •••• 4 XP 14 XP
   Deduction    Deduction •• 2 XP 16 XP
   Deduction    Deduction •• 2 XP 18 XP
 ✮  Strange Solution    Strange Solution •••• 4 XP 22 XP
    →  Higher Education ••• ••• 6 XP 28 XP

(View at arkham-starter.com)

✮ : This is a tricky upgrade. We have 2x Unidentified Strange Solution in the deck, yet it upgrades to 4 XP one on only 1 copy.

This plan is with Dunwich campaign in mind which gives low XP. If we want both 2x Cryptic Research and 2x Deduction (2) ASAP before the campaign ends, we would have to hog useless 2x Unidentified Strange Solution in the deck for too long (essentially a commit after you done the identification) and even worse if you arrive at scenario 7-8 at only ~20 ish XP.

Better to have 2x Unidentified to help identifying easier, turn one to something useful earlier, then turn the other copy into 4 XP upgrade for the finale. Therefore this plan expects you to finish identifying by 14 XP, and continue hogging 1x Unidentified version until 22 XP point. (You cannot remove both even though you recorded in the campaign log already, Researched rule states that it must be included by upgrading.)

If you finish identifying it way earlier than 14 XP (e.g. by 10 XP point) and want to be an alchemist earlier, you can swap the "Guts -> Cryptic Research" plan for the solution upgrade one, getting rid of 2x Unidentified version completely earlier. (And having 1 less Cryptic Research to play with.)

But at least, 2x Magnifying Glass (1) and 2x Seeking Answers (2) are must-have due to synergy with Dark Horse and Rex's ability, before messing with the solution.

I believe Higher Education is not a priority upgrade in this deck when we have Hyperawareness, and is awesome with Rex. If you are playing without Taboo, then feel free to move Higher Education earlier. At 6 XP it actually encourage me to keep using Hyperawareness.

Which Strange Solution?

I have included 2 variants of the solution in the Side Deck. Your decision can change until you reach the upgrade point mid-campaign at 14 XP.

  • Strange Solution: Acidic Ichor : 2022 Taboo decrease the damage to just +1, making it work like cheap costed accurate gun. Still good for this deck, and it gets a boost from Dark Horse.
  • Strange Solution: Restorative Concoction is a good choice if you took more physical trauma than expected, or your party is full of low health investigators. Compared to Acidic Ichor, it also has 4 supplies instead of 3. You can take this upgrade before 2x Deduction (2) if situation is dire.


You start with 5 resources and that is kinda anti-Dark Horse thing to have. This deck have easy to remember Asset that costs more, great to drain out your starting resources in preparation. Try getting these at start.

With 2x copies each, they are hard to completely miss on mulligan. If you use 5 resources to put both Dark Horse and Hyperawareness on the first turn (possibly also the 0 cost Magnifying Glass (1)), you are setup to counter tests in the upcoming Mythos, or evade the spawning enemy better.

Card tips

Dark Horse

Pairing this with Hyperawareness is the path to victory / survival. Because at the very least, you can perform one Evade at 5 minimum to fix enemy spawn, though that left you forever poor.

When you don't have Hyperawareness yet, you may need the "no resource" option in anticipation to perform or at both 4. (Perhaps a scenario location test, or just try not getting a treachery hit.)

In Upkeep Phase, game rule states that you draw before gaining resource. You can see the card first before deciding whether to take the resource or not. If you are at 0 resource and see 1 cost card (Seeking Answers (2), Rabbit's Foot, Strange Solution, Mind over Matter, Dr. William T. Maleson) you may decide to take a resource to play it back to 0 resource.

Use various draw cards Rabbit's Foot, Pickpocketing, Cryptic Research, Search for the Truth to get to Hyperawareness if you got bad starting draws.

If you got caught with a test while having 1+ resources, Hyperawareness can drain resources to 0 to get Dark Horse activation to 4 still, even if the icons aren't matching. (Matching icon is the rule of committing cards.)


You can use it on yourself to do tricks with Seeking Answers (2) to expand the clue discovering range, or finding easier location to succeed.

You can see this card as extending the range of Resign location. Since Resign will not cause AoO, together with this card as Fast, you pretty much ensure your safety regardless of enemy spawning when trying to work on last few things before you bail out near the Resign location.

Rabbit's Foot

Makes you a bit happier when Rex's Curse cause you to fail. This card is not Fortune!

Note that a fixed Rex's Curse keeps coming back and likes to void your Upkeep draw. Taking a bit of time to equip this is the counter for the lack of draws more than you think. (I know it is tempting to throw it for .)

Dr. William T. Maleson

It is easy to forget how tanky this guy is for just 1 resource. 2 healths are very valuable. Watch he dies to test instead of you, and then you can use that 1 resource you got to Hyperawareness + instead of +.

Sometimes dropping clue on easy location maintains tempo really well if you are going to Seeking Answers (2) on it. Succeed by 2 or more, discover all 2 from connecting locations, and discover 1 you just dropped using Rex's .

Mind over Matter

You can use Hyperawareness to boost further. This card at least allow Rex to punch 2 HP enemy to freedom without having to keep evading it.

When fighting with , remember that you don't get bonus from Magnifying Glass (1)

The thing about 1 resource round with Dark Horse + Mind over Matter vs. Dark Horse + Hyperawareness is that Hyperawareness gets you 5 once, but Mind over Matter gets you 5 three times in a row. Sometimes you really need to evade repeatedly to move away from 2 enemies, or wait for the fighter on hoards of enemies. And so, we not dare removing any Mind over Matter for his health safety.

Cryptic Research ••••

The priority is to make someone that can kill enemies in the team get their tools of the trade. If they already have some, use on yourself to assemble Dark Horse + Hyperawareness + Dr. William T. Maleson safety combo.

In emergency, try counting the discard pile and determine if the "miracle cards" are both out, 1x out, or not yet. (Depending on what kind of emergency, it might be Mind over Matter, Inquiring Mind, Deduction (2), ...) This card is Fast, and can essentially "summon" a certain card out with a little help from probability calculation.

Play only during your turn means it is not usable when inside a Mythos Phase test. Better to play one to get some cards earlier if you feel like you are lacking commits for Mythos defense.

Seeking Answers ••

This is a crazy card. It normally replace the regular 1 clue of the Investigate action with the 2 flexible clues (there is an errata that add "instead of", see more inside the card page), but with Rex's ability it is like you add back the regular 1 clue at your location, now you can get up to 3 clues at once. (Still not counting potential Deduction.) Magnifying Glass is of course usable in this.


Nov 29, 2022 LCGFan2020 · 1

Damn, I love dark horse decks!

Nov 30, 2022 mattastrophic · 2507

Well done! Dark Horse in Rex is something that I think is rather unexplored. We were discussing just this in our review of Rex on The Whisperer in Darkness, and I'm glad that someone came around and made it work!

Thought I'm more of a Fire Axe kind of man than Pickpocketing :P

youtu.be - review of Rex Murphy

Dec 01, 2022 5argon · 3368

@mattastrophic I often run your podcast while I'm working! Thanks for content!

There was a scenario this deck ended up with just Dark Horse + Pickpocketing the whole time. Given how much this deck hinges on Hyperawareness, I am betting on both Pickpocketing + Cryptic Research getting to it instead of adding more cards that drain resources. Turns out 2x Hyperawareness are all on very bottom of the deck, and Rex's Curse draw keeps blocking them!

He ended up with a lot of unusable resources, inactive Dark Horse, and nowhere to spend since everything costs 0 or 1, and I keep choosing to get resource in anticipation of Hyperawareness coming. Fire Axe would have provide the redundancy of resource draining card there for sure. (Or Higher Education moved earlier in place of 2x Deduction (2)'s XP, since Rex already can get clues well with the built-in ability.)