Cthulhu Wars Strategy Wiki

Tcho-Tcho {CW-F5} is a faction released with Onslaught Two. The Onslaught Three version of the faction {CW-F5-O3} excluded the Brain Cylinder Tokens and updates the Tablets of the Gods and Hierophants spellbooks. The Leng and Sarkomand Tribe spellbooks were later added with Final Onslaught.



After all other players have set up except Opener and Windwalker: 8 Power, 6 Acolytes, and a Controlled Gate in an empty Area containing a Faction Glyph. Set Ubbo Sathla's Growth counter to 0 on the Doom track. If the High Priest expansion is in use, replace 1 Acolyte with a High Priest.
Unique Ability
Sycophancy (Doom Phase): When an enemy player does a Ritual of Annihilation, either you gain 1 Doom or he earns 1 fewer Doom, his choice.
Spellbook Requirements
Another player performs a Ritual of Annihilation
Another player has 15 Doom
Earn an Elder Sign
Own 3 or more Elder Signs As an Action, remove your Controlled Gate in your Start Area
Any Great Old One is Killed in Battle Awaken Ubbo-Sathla
All Tribes
Spellbook - Tcho-Tcho - All Tribes.pngSpellbook - Tcho-Tcho (Hierophants).png Hierophants (Ongoing): When you earn a Faction Spellbook (including this one), place a High Priest at one of your Gates. If there are no High Priests in your Pool, instead advance Ubbo-Sathla’s Growth counter by 1. When this Spellbook is first taken, if you are using the High Priests expansion, then all Factions place a High Priest at one of their Gates.
Spellbook - Tcho-Tcho - All Tribes.pngSpellbook - Tcho-Tcho (Soulless).png Soulless (Ongoing): When Captured and Sacrificed, your Cultists provide 0 Power (instead of the normal 1 Power).
Spellbook - Tcho-Tcho - All Tribes.pngSpellbook - Tcho-Tcho (Terror).png Terror (Battle): Choose one:
  1. Your enemy’s Combat total is reduced by 1 per Proto-Shoggoth in the Battle.
  2. Your Combat total is increased by 1 per Proto-Shoggoth in the Battle.
Tsang Tribe
Spellbook - Tcho-Tcho - Tsang Tribe.pngSpellbook - Tcho-Tcho (Idolatry).png Idolatry (Action: Cost 1): Select an Area containing another Faction's starting Glyph (even if that Faction is not in play). Move any or all of your Units in adjacent Areas into the selected Area.
Spellbook - Tcho-Tcho - Tsang Tribe.pngSpellbook - Tcho-Tcho (Martyrdom).png Martyrdom (Post-Battle): If your High Priest is assigned a Kill, all Kills assigned to your other Units become Pains instead.
Spellbook - Tcho-Tcho - Tsang Tribe.pngSpellbook - Tcho-Tcho (Tablets of the Gods).png Tablets of the Gods (Doom Phase): When you perform a Ritual of Annihilation, you also receive 1 additional Elder Sign for each Gate at which you have any High Priests. Then, Eliminate all your High Priests (this is not optional).
Leng Tribe
Spellbook - Tcho-Tcho - Leng Tribe.pngSpellbook - Tcho-Tcho (Dark Rituals).png Dark Rituals (Action: Cost 0): Flip this Spellbook face down. All Factions with your High Priest(s) in their Start Area must pay you 2 Power or 2 Doom (their choice). A faction with less than 2 Power or Doom is immune. Flip this Spellbook face up again at the Doom Phase.
Spellbook - Tcho-Tcho - Leng Tribe.pngSpellbook - Tcho-Tcho (Fulmination).png Fulmination (Post-Battle): If Ubbo-Sathla is Killed in Battle, you may remove it from the game permanently, and gain 1 Elder Sign for each Unit Killed (by either side) in that Battle.
Spellbook - Tcho-Tcho - Leng Tribe.pngSpellbook - Tcho-Tcho (Surprise!).png Surprise! (Action: Cost 2): Choose an enemy faction. That player selects and Eliminates one of their Acolytes; replace it with a Proto-Shoggoth from your Pool.
Sarkomand Tribe
Spellbook - Tcho-Tcho - Sarkomand Tribe.pngSpellbook - Tcho-Tcho (Doomsday).png Doomsday (Once Only): If you have a Controlled Gate, flip this card face down, then immediately take from the Pool one Independent Great Old One with a cost of exactly 2 or 4 and place it at that Gate. Take its Loyalty Card.
Spellbook - Tcho-Tcho - Sarkomand Tribe.pngSpellbook - Tcho-Tcho (Inerrant).png Inerrant (Doom Phase): When you perform a Ritual of Annihilation, gain 1 additional Elder Sign for each enemy-Controlled Gate at which you have any Great Old Ones.
Spellbook - Tcho-Tcho - Sarkomand Tribe.pngSpellbook - Tcho-Tcho (Otherworld Alliances).png Otherworld Alliances (Ongoing): Your Neutral Monsters and Terrors have +1 Combat.


Image Unit Quantity Cost Combat Spellbooks
Acolyte (Classic) - Tcho-Tcho.png 100x100px

Acolyte (Alternate) - Tcho-Tcho.png 100x100px
Acolyte 6 1 0 Soulless
Availability: [Classic] Alternate Faction Acolytes {CW-U12} (x6), Acolyte Blister Pack {RPG-CG-A} (x2)
[Alternate] Tcho-Tcho {CW-F5} (x6), Tcho-Tcho {CW-F5-O3} (x6), Cultic Set 2 {EHP-5} (x6), Tcho-Tcho Acolyte Blister Pack {RPG-F5-A} (x3)
The Tcho-Tcho tribe worships the Great Old Ones in twisted rites. A Tcho-Tcho can be all-too-easily underestimated as a mere primitive, instead of feared as the magic adept and skilled killer that he really is.
Classic sculpt units were provided in Onslaught Three for consistency with other factions.
High Priest (Classic) - Tcho-Tcho.png 100x100px
100x100px 100x100px
High Priest 3 3 0 Martyrdom
Tablets of the Gods

Unspeakable Oath (Ongoing): At the end of any player's Action (even if it is not your turn), Sacrifice your High Priest (return him to your Pool) and gain 2 Power. This may also be done during the Gather Power and Doom Phases.
Notes: The High Priest is a new type of Cultist, it is Recruited like an Acolyte. Each High Priest generates 1 Power during the Gather Power Phase, can Create and Control a Gate, and can be Captured. Each Faction has only a single High Priest available.
This unit may also be used as one of the Unique High Priests.
Availability: Tcho-Tcho {CW-F5} (x3), Tcho-Tcho {CW-F5-O3} (x3), Tcho-Tcho High Priest Blister Pack {RPG-F5-P2} (x2)
[Alternate] Cultic Set 2 {EHP-5} (x1), Cultic Set 3 {EHP-6} (x1)
The worship focus of the Tcho-Tcho cult, the high priest leads their rituals to enslave the great old one, and bend that cosmic horror to the will of his tribe.
The alternate sculpt unit replaces the classic sculpt High Priest, and was originally developed for Evil High Priest.
Image Unit Quantity Cost Combat Spellbooks
Proto-Shoggoth.png Proto-Shoggoth (Painted).png
Proto-Shoggoth 6 2 1 Terror
Availability: Tcho-Tcho {CW-F5} (x6), Tcho-Tcho {CW-F5-O3} (x6), Proto-Shoggoth Blister Pack {RPG-F5-P1} (x1)
Created by evil past comprehension, the proto-shoggoth is a formless horror that can masquerade, at least temporarily, as a person.
Great Old Ones
Image Unit Quantity Cost Combat Spellbooks
Ubbo-Sathla.png 100x100px
Ubbo-Sathla 1 6 *

How to Awaken Ubbo-Sathla:
  1. You have a Controlled Gate and a High Priest in play (he need not be with the Gate) during the Doom Phase or the Action Phase.
  2. If it is the Doom Phase, pay 0 Power. If it is the Action Phase, pay 6 Power.
  3. Eliminate the High Priest, then place Ubbo-Sathla at your Controlled Gate.
Combat: Equal to Growth counter on the Doom track.
Hell's Banquet (Doom Phase): Once Ubbo-Sathla has been Awakened, starting with the following Doom phase, and whether or not Ubbo-Sathla is still in play, roll 1d6 and increase its Growth counter by the die roll.
Availability: Tcho-Tcho {CW-F5} (x1), Tcho-Tcho {CW-F5-O3} (x1), Ubbo-Sathla Blister Pack {RPG-F5-P3} (x1)
The unbegotten source lies at the ancient origin of the world, guarding the carefully inscribed tablets of the elder gods. Can this being, and the wisdom it protects, be brought forward to our time? And if so, should it?

Expansion Units[]

Image Unit Quantity Cost Combat Spellbooks
Acolyte (Handicap) - Tcho-Tcho.png 100x100px
Acolyte 1 1 0
Availability: CW Onslaught 3 Stretch Goal Box {CW-E20} (x1)
This unit is used as a Handicap Acolyte.
Brain Cylinder Token - Tcho-Tcho.png

Brain Cylinder Figure - Tcho-Tcho.png 100x100px
Brain Cylinder 4 0 0
Availability: [Token] Tcho-Tcho {CW-F5} (x4)
[Figure] Shining Trapezohedron {CW-E15} (x4), Shining Trapezohedron {CW-E15-O3} (x4), Shining Trapezohedron {CW-E15-O4} (x4), Brain Cylinder Blister Pack {RPG-E15-10} (x1)
This helpless human, reduced to a mere living brain by the surgical and mechanical skill of the aliens, can now only communicate through electronic devices. What wisdom or warning can he relate?
See Brain Cylinders for rules. The Brain Cylinder figures replace the Brain Cylinder Tokens.
The Dark Demon - Tcho-Tcho.png 100x100px
The Dark Demon 1 1 0

Loyalty Card - The Dark Demon.png

How to Obtain the The Dark Demon Loyalty Card: In the Doom Phase, when it is your turn to perform a Ritual of Annihilation, you may pay 2 Doom to obtain this Loyalty Card and then place the Dark Demon matching your Faction's color anywhere on the Map. If you wish, you may also perform a Ritual of Annihilation. Each of the other Factions permanently loses an Acolyte from their Pools (or from the Map, if all are in play) and then adds to their Pools a Dark Demon of their Faction's color.
The Summons (Ongoing): Any Faction with a Dark Demon in its Pool cannot take any Action other than Recruiting the Dark Demon. (You can still choose to drop your Power to 0 and take no more Actions this Action Phase instead).
Metamorph (Ongoing): Dark Demons are a new type of Cultist and are treated as Cultists in every way, but they produce 0 Power during the Gather Power Phase. They are Recruited rather than Summoned, so a Controlled Gate is not needed to bring them into play. Dark Demons may Create and Control Gates, and they are worth 1 Power when Captured. They can be targeted by any Spellbooks or abilities that reference Cultists, but not Acolytes.
Availability: Masks of Nyarlathotep {CW-U10} (x1), Dark Demon - green Miniature STL {U10-N4}
Nyarlathotep is infamous for his multiple shapes. As the Dark Demon, this pig-like humanoid is terrifying to behold, but the horror it leaves in its wake is far worse.


Image Unit Quantity Cost Combat Spellbooks
Gate - Tcho-Tcho.png 100x100px
Gate 1 3 N/A
Notes: Used for Colour Out of Space
Availability: Colour Out of Space {CW-U7} (x1), Eldritch Gate Pack {CW-U9} (x1), Eldritch Gate Pack {CW-U9-O3} (x1)

Other components[]

Other components
Image Component Quantity Notes
Faction Card - Tcho-Tcho.png
Faction Card 1
Availability: [Cardstock] Tcho-Tcho {CW-F5} (x1)
[3mm] Tcho-Tcho {CW-F5} (x1), Tcho-Tcho {CW-F5-O3} (x1)
Faction Token - Tcho-Tcho.png
Faction Token 1
Availability: Tcho-Tcho {CW-F5} (x1), Tcho-Tcho {CW-F5-O3} (x1)
Power Marker - Tcho-Tcho.png 100x50px
Power Marker 1
Availability: Tcho-Tcho {CW-F5} (x1), Tcho-Tcho {CW-F5-O3} (x1)
Doom Marker - Tcho-Tcho.png 100x50px
Doom Marker 1
Availability: Tcho-Tcho {CW-F5} (x1), Tcho-Tcho {CW-F5-O3} (x1)
Growth Counter.png
Growth Counter 1
Availability: Tcho-Tcho {CW-F5} (x12), Tcho-Tcho {CW-F5-O3} (x1)
Custom Dice - Tcho-Tcho.png
Custom Dice 1 Used for Hell's Banquet
Availability: Custom Dice Pack {CW-E14} (x1)
Battle Dice - Tcho-Tcho.png
Battle Dice 20
Availability: Battle Dice - Tcho-Tcho {CW-U21} (x20), All 200 Battle Dice! {CW-U24} (x20), ALL 240 BATTLE DICE {CW-U24-O4} (x20)
Neutral Unit Identifier - Tcho-Tcho.png
Neutral Unit Identifier 6 (25mm)
3 (40mm)
3 (50mm)
3 (60mm)
1 (80mm)
Availability: Neutral Unit Identifiers {CW-U26} (x16), Neutral Unit Identifiers {CW-U26-O4} (x16)


Faction strategy[]

Spellbook strategies[]

Recommended openers[]


General Tips[]

  • If you have the option, do not choose either of Windwalker's starting locations as your own. Windwalker will be forced to choose the other location and will immediately get a spellbook for gates being present in both locations. In an 8 player game, you must choose one of these locations, but the increased player count blunts Windwalker's advantage from this.

Spellbook Strategies[]

Opening Strategies[]


In your first turn, you pretty much need a High Priest. This is going to cost you 3 Power. Since you also want a gate (everyone does!), you have a problem. It’s 4 Power to build that gate, and 3 Power for the priest, which leaves you only 1 Power, which means you can’t guard your second Gate with a monster, since your only monster costs 2. In other words, you’ll have to guard that Gate by moving a cultist, or by recruiting your high priest there. And THEN you have to hope that only one enemy targets you for capture. 

The difficulty is that when you build your new Gate, it is possible for at least two enemies to already have gates next to it. This assumes Crawling Chaos isn’t in the game, which will add a third threat. If both enemies produce 1 pt monsters to “guard their gate”, but then spend 2 Power to move to YOUR gate, and capture you, you have taken a pretty big hit. 

There’s not much you can do about this except try to place that Gate where it is only adjacent to one enemy, or try to verbally convince your enemies not to gang up on you. 

One other option is to NOT build that second gate, but instead sacrifice your own Gate at your start for a spellbook, (taking Hierophants) and then rebuild it. You'll still get the High Priest even though you have no Controlled Gate (FAQ ruling) although this ability is better used later in the game, especially if you are under attack and at high risk of losing the gate anyway... So, you’ll start your second turn with the same amount of power and doom or 2 less Power and 1 less Doom, depending on when you sacrificed the gate.  

It’s a thorny situation, and shows you how the Tcho-Tchos are faced with critical decisions right from the start.


In the first Doom phase, assuming you “only” lost 1 cultist to capture, and did keep that second gate, you’ll start with Ubbo-Sathla (presumably guarding the outlier gate). There are several choices for your second spellbook, but Soulless is pretty popular, as it discourages (though doesn’t prevent) enemies from going after you. 

This doom phase you’ll wind up with 10 Power, 1 High Priest, and 2 Doom. (Sack your existing High Priest in the Doom phase to awaken Ubbo, then take Hierophants to get him back.)

Ubbo’s combat is 0, so while you can use him to capture enemies, he can’t do much damage. This is probably a good turn to destroy and rebuild your start area gate, which also gives you a second high priest. With your 7 remaining Power, you should be able to either build a third gate and guard it with protoshoggoths, or attack with Ubbo-Sathla in an attempt to get him killed (might be hard unless an enemy awakened a nearby GOO), or you can reach for the stars and try both. If you succeed, you’ll have all three high priests! You may want to get Tablets of the Gods for your reward upon killing off Ubbo. See why below. 


If you get that third gate, don’t lose any cultists (and recruit back your captured one) AND kill off Ubbo-Sathla, then in the Gather phase you’ll have 15 Power. In the Doom phase, you’ll sack a high priest to re-awaken Ubbo, then with this much Power you’ll want to Ritual. All three high priests will be sacrificed, to give you no fewer than FOUR Elder Signs, which will also mean you get 2 new high priests, since you got both your 1 Elder Sign & 3 Elder Sign spellbooks! If you didn’t get Tablets of the Gods, you’ll only get 1 spellbook , but you’ll have an extra High Priest. If you’re the first one to Ritual (plausible, if not certain) you’ll end up with 10 Power, 8 Doom, and 4 Elder Signs. You have five spellbooks too, plus presumably a few protoshoggoths.

You could try to build a fourth gate and protect it. Your basic problem here is that with four gates, and only 6 protoshoggoths (not all of which are yet in play), and 1 GOO, you can’t guard those gates very well. At least one gate is going to have either just a single proto, or else Ubbo won’t have a proto alongside him. Plus with four elder signs AND four gates, you’ve painted a big target on your forehead. 

So maybe it’s time to strike. Use Idolatry to move Ubbo (if his die roll for combat was decent) and a proto or two to a strong enemy’s homeland, and see if you capture their gate. If not, at least you set them back. Then use your excess power to go after another gate. Send a high priest to protect your force (Martyrdom). 

This brings up another issue with the Tcho-Tchos. It’s not too hard to have 3 priests. Since another is “on the way” next time you get a spellbook, you need to get rid of one of them to open the way for the new recruit. While you can just sack him for 2 Power, Martyrdom is usually a better choice, because a well-chosen battle can take a gate (or save one!). 

You could try to get a 5th gate, but that really is almost impossible for you to defend. Every other faction but one is skilled at defeating a Tcho-Tcho gate only defended with a cultist & a proto. Crawling Chaos can turn your proto invisible with a polyp. Shub-Niggurath can Avatar you away. Opener literally loves to attack you when your shoggoths are decreasing his combat potential, because it means yours is low too, and his guys can promote via Million Favored Ones. Sleeper captures proto (who doesn’t benefit from Soulless). Windwalker Howls you away, Cthulhu Devours (and has enough combat to bull through your Terror), and Tcho-Tcho Zingayas. Really only the Ancients don’t have a simple response to the Tcho-Tcho gate “problem”, and they can try to finagle other factions into being catspaws with Festival, or in the worst case, attack with a couple of Reanimated, whose attack is good enough to handle it, if not as trivially as with the others. 

Another problem you have with the Ancients is two of their spellbooks give every other faction their “cheapest” and then their “most expensive” monsters. This is much less exciting for you, as a Tcho-Tcho, with only one monster! But perhaps it makes sense that the two human-centered factions are natural foes.


Anyhoo, if you hang onto that fourth gate, this Gather phase you’ll have 16 Power (two high priests). In the Doom phase, at least one player should Ritual, which gives you your last spellbook. You need to Ritual (which sends you to 16 Doom, and drops your Power to 9-10). But first you have the tough choice of whether to sacrifice your high priests before or in the Ritual. Doing it before means you’ll start the turn with four-six more Power (depending on whether you get your spellbook before or after your own ritual). Using them DURING the Ritual means you get three extra Elder Signs, but then no more High Priests unless you recruit them yourself. Probably the Elder Signs are worth it though, since this sails you up to 8 Elder Signs. 

If you sack the priests, the turn starts with you at 9-10 Power, no High Priests, a 2d6 combat Ubbo, but easily able to get all your proto-shoggoths out. Unfortunately, the other players all have great old ones by now, and most or all of their own spellbooks, which means you are in for trouble. Hold on tight. Unless your opponents blunder, you will not be able to get another Gate, and probably won’t even be able to retain the four you start with. 

The difficulty is that you are an easy target to hit. Your Gates are comparatively ill-defended – even two proto-shoggoths can’t really hold out against a determined attack, and all your high priests are gone, so you don’t have Martyrdom anymore. If you choose to recruit a High Priest, his best use is to keep intact until the next Doom phase so you can sack him for more Elder Signs, which means you will have even less Power to fight off your enemies. 

You may well be driven back to 2 gates this turn. Ubbo might die. The exact mode of attack will vary with the enemy, but Crawling Chaos will be excited to hit Ubbo to get Elder Signs and/or Power, Cthulhu may just hammer you for the gates, and so forth. You will be scrambling this turn, but this is how the Tcho-Tchos roll. 

In your favor, you have 8 elder signs racked up, and at least one more on the way. You also have 16 Doom, and a good chance at getting 4-6 more next Doom phase, plus if you recruit a High Priest with your sparse remaining Power, you can get up to 2 more Elder signs. You have a decent shot at victory. 

Have at it!