the essex county express

Armitage’s notes indicate that the Whateley family is spread across many branches, some decadent and unscrupulous, others “undecayed” or otherwise untouched by nefarious and diabolic rites. According to Armitage, Zebulon’s branch of the family lay somewhere between the decayed and undecayed Whateleys, who knew of the traditions of his ancestors, but was not corrupted by them. He agrees to pick you up at the closest station and drive you into town. 


As the train departs from Arkham, you feel the events of the previous night catching up to you, and exhaustion sets in. But before you can safely reach your destination, the train car suddenly rumbles and shakes, startling you out of your reverie. The train loudly skids to a violent halt, and you hear a rattling noise behind you...


You aboard the County express train and your end destination is Dunwich, but will you make it? This is the next scenario in line of the Dunwich cycle. It has a cool location layout and one that you will not expect. 


Gather all cards from the following encounter sets:


  • Put one of the three Engine Car locations into play at random. Remove the other versions of Engine Car from the game. Then, put six of the eight Train Car locations into play at random, in a straight line to the left of the Engine Car. Remove the remaining two Train Car locations from the game.
  • Reveal the leftmost Train Car. Each investigator begins play in that location. (If that location has a ‘forced’ effect that triggers upon entering that location, ignore it.)
  • Set all 4 copies of Across Space and Time aside, out of play.
  • Shuffle the remainder of the encounter cards to build the encounter deck.


journal setup

In the last scenario you had the chance to destroy or to keep the Necronomicon and this is what happens when you choose what. 


Destroy it: In your Campaign Log, record that the investigators destroyed the Necronomicon.


Keep it: In your Campaign Log, record that the investigators took custody of the Necronomicon.

The investigators have earned The Necronomicon (Olaus Wormius Translation) card. Any one investigator may choose to add The Necronomicon (Olaus Wormius Translation) to his or her deck. This card does not count towards that investigator’s deck size.


You have given in to the temptation of power. Add 1 Elder thing chaos token to the chaos bag for the remainder of the campaign.

agenda and act nr. 1

Agenda NR. 1A - A tear in reality

As the train to Dunwich comes to a jarring stop, you look out the window behind you and see an immense tear in the sky, like a rip in a piece of cloth. Several of the rearmost train cars are pulled backwards, and there is a dreadful metallic crunch as they are detached.


4 doom threshold. Nothing special you know the drill. But do not forget you are on a moving train!


Act NR. 1A - RUN!

The train has stopped on a bridge high above the Miskatonic River - you might be able to survive the fall, but you don’t like your chances. Your best bet is to make your way to the engine car as fast as you can and get the train running again.


Run as fast as you can to the end of the train. You will have to reach the last card named the engine car. It's sounds simple but it isn't. Don't forget you are playing Arkham horror. Every location/cart has its own surprise for you.

Agenda NR. 1B - Keep moving!


Like we said, run to the end of the train and do not stop! This whole scenario is based on losing the location on your left. Because they will be sucked up by the hole in the sky they and vanish into the void. 


Remove the leftmost location. Each investigator and enemy at that location is defeated. Discard all clues.



If you gathered all the clues from a vanishing location you may place it in the victory display for the exp points.

agenda nr. 2a and 2b

Agenda NR. 2A - The Maw Widens

The tear grows larger, and you can feel the rearmost car of the train shaking as it is pulled backwards. The situation threatens to erupt into chaos as more passengers realize the danger they are in. Some passengers are looking for places to hide, while others are running about the compartments in terror.


Doom threshold 3. No forced effect or extra window. Plain and simple. 


Agenda NR. 2B - Don't Stop

The next train car is ripped backwards with violent force. A middle-aged man hangs from his fingertips as the car flies unhindered toward the rift. In moments, the car is consumed whole, and the man lets go rather than be pulled into the void. He starts to fall, but is caught by the rift's force and pulled inside it anyway.


Only the flavour tekst is different but the bad shit happens again. 


Remove the leftmost location. Each investigator and enemy at that location is defeated. Discard all clues.

agenda nr. 3a and 3b

Agenda NR. 3A - Rolling Backwards

The pull of the rift in the sky seems to grow stronger, and the entire train begins to roll backwards along the tracks. The rearmost cars of the train begin to rattle, the force of the rift threatening to detach them. You must get out of these cars as fast as you can!


Doom threshold of 4 and still no force effects. 


Agenda NR. 3B - It's getting Faster!

Two of the train cars closest to the gate are severed from the rest of the train by a sheet of impossibly hot steam, which slices through metal like a knife through butter. The cars are sucked upwards and fly into the gate. Something above the train lets out a terrible screech, though to your ears it is like the shrill sound of a broken steam pipe.


The same thing will happens just like the other agenda B site. Remove the leftmost location. Each investigator at that location is defeated. Discard all clues.


We loving the flavour tekst on the agenda cards. It makes you wanna jump from your chair! It's what's this whole scenario brings to life! We travel a lot by train, we are commuters by day and investigators by night so its one scenario to our heart!

act nr. 1b

Act NR. 1B - Wings of steam


We dropped this card later in the article because this is the point where you have to be (between agenda 3 and 4) if you advance the act deck. Because if you aren't you are in a lot of trouble. The sooner the better we would say. 


A tender car filled with coal blocks your way to the engine cab. Swallowing your fear, you climb out of the nearby window and clamber onto the roof of the train, making your way across the tender car. The steady backward motion of the train makes it difficult for you to keep your footing. As you get close, a winged creature swoops down from above, its body composed of piping hot steam.


You will have to take a test of 3 fight or evade. This one is for a trauma point so you wil have to make it. You will get 1 mental or physical trauma if you lose and that depends on the test you will preform. 

act nr. 2A

Act NR. 2A - Get the engine running!


You’ve managed to make it to the engine cart, but now you have to get the engine started again so you can outrun the pulling force of the gate!


If there are no clues at this location advance. Read further to look what the engine cars look like and what you will have to do to make this scenario a succes. 

agenda nr. 4a and 4b

Agenda NR. 4A - Drawn in

The gate crackles with power as its strength increases. Dirt and rocks from the edge of the bridge behind you are torn from the ground and trees are uprooted, pulled in by the gate. One younger passenger smashes the window of your car and shouts, “We gotta get outta here!” He leaps out of the window, but before he lands in the river below, he is snatched in the talons of a swift flying creature, and carried out of sight. A trail of steam is left in the creature’s wake.


Still nothing specials. Just the 3 doom threshold.


Agenda NR. 4B - Nowhere is safe

The two rearmost train cars begin to melt as they are filled with superheated steam. The metal warps, and the passengers inside scream in agony. The cars are ripped from the train tracks along with rail slats and chunks of the bridge behind you.


Same as before but you know the drill. 

agenda nr. 5a and 5b

Agenda NR. 5A - Out of time. 

The rift in the sky twists and shakes, completely distorted. Its size is now massive, its shape warping and shifting, as if it is about to explode. 


Doom 3 threshold. 


Agenda NR. 5B - Sucked in. 

The entire bridge cracks under the pressure of the gate, and breaks apart. Instead of plummeting into the river, the remaining train cars are pulled into the sky, toward the rift. You hang on for dear life and scream in horror as you are pulled into the gate. Then, everything goes black.


You didn't reached the end of the scenario and you are defeated. You will suffer 1 mental trauma. Read the R2 ending. 


Your experience beyond the gate is simultaneously terrifying and impossible to recall with clarity. A hypnotic spectacle of lights, otherworldly sensations, and altered geometry dances at the tattered edges of your mind. An unearthly voice from beyond rings in your ears, its significance an enigma. When you awaken, you find yourself in the woods, several miles from the Miskatonic River. Destroyed train cars surround you. They are crumpled as if from a severe impact; they are also decayed as if years of rust and squalor have claimed them. There is no sign of the other passengers.

Act NR. 2B - Forward motion


The engine roars to life and kicks into motion. You shovel coal into the engine's firebox and are relieved to see that the train is moving forward along the tracks once again.


You managed to get into the engine room and fired up de engine to get the train moving. Read Resolution 1. 


You breathe a sigh of relief as the gate behind the train collapses harmlessly upon itself. The few passengers who survived the ordeal seem unable to comprehend what just happened. One passenger mentions “a pipe bursting in the rear car,” and that quickly becomes the explanation for the innocent and ignorant, those who either cannot or choose not to delve further into the mystery. You, on the other hand, know better... although in hindsight, you wish you didn’t.

Locations - Passenger cars

Before we go to the engine cart we will first look at the passenger cart. Because these cards wil probably laying around the table. Same goes for the special locations cart but that a little up ahead. Each of these locations are connecting with the left and the right side. One thing that makes this one hell of a train ride is, that you will have to clear all clues before you continue to the next card. 


Passenger car 1 (left) / 4 shroud, 1 clues per investigator. The 4 shroud is one to swallow because is a hard one. 2 is normaal and is you'r an advanced player maybe 3 also. While 1 is an easy one. You must discard cards from your hand with a combine power of 2 fight. If you can't because you are a seeker or you don't wanna lose those precious cards then you will take 2 damage. 

Passenger car 2 / 2 shroud, 2 clues per investigator. The something happens here only the discard value has to be 2 willpower and if you can't you will lose 2 sanity. The shroud value is normal. Only you will have to clear 2 clues. So if you are playing with 4 players thats make a totaal of 8 clues before you can head on to the other carts. 

Passenger car 3 / 3 shroud, 2 clues per investigator. A medium shroud control but in the long run if you lost al your cards in the previous carts this 3 is gonna be a tough one if you can't buff your tests. And this cart also let you drop cards from your hand with a combine value of 2 intellect. If you can't suffer 2 sanity. 

Passenger car 4 (right) / 1 shroud, 1 clues per investigator. A easy test with 1 shroud. If you enter this cart you will have to discard a card from your hand with the ? icon. So it can be any card. Pretty simple. But is you don't like that you also can take 1/1 damage and sanity. 


PRO TIP: So now you can see that these carts wants to lose your cards fast! Because if you don't have cards in your hand you can't buff up your skill tests. Test for finding clues is very important in this scenario. Because you need to run to the engine cart as fast as you can! Before your will be sucked in the massive hole. Calculate, calculate and once more calculate! Thats key in this train! If you are near the end maybe you should choose for sanity and damage lose in order to reach the end of the train. 

locations - special cars

These three special cart cards are different than the passengers cart. Each has there own unique mechanism what triggers or can be triggered. These cards can help you a bit on the way except for the dinning cart. 

Parlor cart / 4 shroud, 1 clue. For an action you can get 3 free resources. Only you must record in your campaign log that you have stolen from the passengers. 4 shroud is a tough one and just for 1 clue. But you need to clear it because otherwise you can't go any further. 
Sleeping cart / 2 shroud, 0 clues. No clues so you can pass trough immediately, or not...... Forced effect! Search for the grappling horror and draw it. Because of the horror you can't move and it's an average monster with a 3/3/2 stats. His hunter keyword is a bummer, it will follow you and because you have to clear every location. You better destroy it!
Dinning cart / 3 shroud, 1 clue per investigator. If you are a rogue this must be a sort of gold mine. Because in the roque class you have ways enough to get more resources than you needed. So you don't have to investigate this location. You can spend an action to pay 3 resources and get a clue from this location. It's probably an expensive piece of clue but hey! you are on a train sucked up to nothingness. 

locations - engine cars

These location are you end station of this scenario. You will have to make it to the engine cart. But not all 3 are in play. In the set up you must shuffle them and then choice one of them to put in play. But in this article we will look at them all. 


Engine cart 1 / 4 shroud, 2 clues per investigators. It shroud value is a high one, but let me tell you something. You best engine cart card is this one! To win this scenario you will have to clear all the clues of the location in order to start the engine and let the train ride again. If you draw one of the other two cards you are not so lucky. 

Engine cart 2 / 2 shroud, 2 clues per investigator. Search the encounter deck for a grappling horror and draw it. No you no what to expect when you see this monster. The downside is that your are at the end of this scenario and you probably used all your tricks. So beware and remember that this cart can be in play! First lose the monster and then get the clues!

Engine cart 3 / 1 shroud, 2 clues per investigator. You think yes! Only 1 shroud, but read further and your days are numbered! Why? Because you will have to draw 3 encounter cards! There's probably a monster or maybe 2 of them. You first need to get rid of them, because you can't investigate any further. You now because of the attack of opportunity. So are best cart is still number 1!

Ow boy! That was a fun ride in the County express for sure! We hope you all enjoyed our latest article! And maybe this will help you to make choices a lot easier!


Jeroen - dutch blogger company