Cthulhu Wars Strategy Wiki
The Ancients

The Ancients {CW-F6} is a faction released with Onslaught Three. It focuses on diplomacy and social engineering.



Set up after all other Factions other than Tcho-Tcho, Windwalker, and Opener: 8 Power, 6 Acolytes, and a Controlled Gate in any Area containing no game symbol (you may still place in an Area containing one of Yellow Sign's three Spellbook Glyphs, if desired).
Unique Ability
Dematerialization (Doom Phase): Relocate any or all of your own Units from one Area to a single other Area, anywhere on the Map.
Spellbook Requirements
A Cathedral in an Area marked with this Glyph: Dragon Glyph.png A Cathedral in an Area marked with this Glyph: Chevron Glyph.png
A Cathedral in an Area marked with this Glyph: Thorns Glyph.png A Cathedral in an Area without any of these Glyphs:
Chevron Glyph.pngDragon Glyph.pngThorns Glyph.png
As your Action, each enemy Summons their lowest cost Monster at their Controlled Gate for free. As your Action, each enemy Summons their highest cost Monster at their Controlled Gate for free.
Spellbook - The Ancients.pngSpellbook - The Ancients (Brainless).png Brainless (Ongoing): Reanimated now cost 1 Power to Summon. They may only Move, Capture, or declare Battle if they share an Area with one or more of your non-Reanimated Units.
Spellbook - The Ancients.pngSpellbook - The Ancients (Consecration).png Consecration (Doom Phase): When you perform a Ritual of Annihilation, gain 1 Elder Sign if at least one Cathedral is in play. If all four Cathedrals are in play, gain 2 Elder Signs instead.
Spellbook - The Ancients.pngSpellbook - The Ancients (Extinction).png Extinction (Ongoing): Yothans now cost 3 Power to Summon. When a Yothan is Killed or Eliminated, remove it permanently from the game.
Spellbook - The Ancients.pngSpellbook - The Ancients (Festival).png Festival (Ongoing): Un-Men now cost 0 Power to Summon. When you Summon an Un-Man, also select an enemy to gain 1 Power.

Spellbook - The Ancients.pngSpellbook - The Ancients (Unholy Ground).png Unholy Ground (Post-Battle): If there is a Cathedral in the Battle Area, you may choose to remove a Cathedral from anywhere. If you do, an enemy Great Old One in the Battle must be Eliminated by its owner.
Spellbook - The Ancients.pngSpellbook - The Ancients (Worship Services).png Worship Services (Gather Power Phase): Gain 1 Power for each Cathedral that shares an Area with an enemy Gate. Those enemies each gain 1 Power.


Image Unit Quantity Cost Combat Spellbooks
Acolyte (Classic) - The Ancients.png File:Acolyte (Classic) - The Ancients (Painted).png

Acolyte (Alternate) - The Ancients.png Acolyte (Alternate) - The Ancients (Painted).png
Acolyte 6 1 0
Availability: [Classic] Alternate Faction Acolytes {CW-U12} (x6), Acolyte Blister Pack {RPG-CG-A} (x2)
[Alternate] The Ancients {CW-F6} (x6), Cultic Set 1 {EHP-4} (x6)
From his ancient tome he intones the words of power. Beware, sane world. The realm of madness awakens at his command.
Classic sculpt units were provided in Onslaught Three for consistency with other factions.
Image Unit Quantity Cost Combat Spellbooks
Un-Men.png File:Un-Men (Painted).png
Un-Men 4 3 0 Festival
Cost: 0 with Festival Spellbook.
Availability: The Ancients {CW-F6} (x4)
Reanimated.png File:Reanimated (Painted).png
Reanimated 3 4 2 Brainless
Cost: 1 with Brainless Spellbook.
Availability: The Ancients {CW-F6} (x3)
Image Unit Quantity Cost Combat Spellbooks
Yothan.png File:Yothan (Painted).png
Yothan 3 6 7 Extinction
Cost: 3 with Extinction Spellbook.
Availability: The Ancients {CW-F6} (x3)

Expansion Units[]

Image Unit Quantity Cost Combat Spellbooks
Acolyte (Handicap) - The Ancients.png Acolyte (Handicap) - The Ancients (Painted).png
Acolyte 1 1 0
Availability: CW Onslaught 3 Stretch Goal Box {CW-E20} (x1)
This unit is used as a Handicap Acolyte.
High Priest (Classic) - The Ancients.png File:High Priest (Classic) - The Ancients (Painted).png
File:High Priest (Alternate).png File:High Priest (Alternate) (Painted).png
High Priest 1 3 0

Loyalty Card - High Priest.png 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: [Classic] High Priests {CW-U3-O3} (x1), CW Onslaught 3 Stretch Goal Box {CW-E20} (x1), Classic High Priest for the Ancients {CW-E25} (x1), High Priest Blister Pack {RPG-U3-HP} (x2)
[Alternate] High Priests {CW-U3-O4} (x1), Cultic Set 1 {EHP-4} (x1), Cultic Set 3 {EHP-6} (x1)
He leads the rites of old. It is time to awaken the great old ones! Iä! Iä!
The alternate sculpt unit replaces the classic sculpt High Priest, and was originally developed for Evil High Priest.
Brain Cylinder Token - The Ancients.png
File:Brain Cylinder Figure.png File:Brain Cylinder Figure (Painted).png
Brain Cylinder 4 0 0
Availability: [Token] CW Onslaught 3 Stretch Goal Box {CW-E20} (x4)
[Figure] CW Onslaught 3 Stretch Goal Box {CW-E20} (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 - The Ancients.png File:The Dark Demon - The Ancients (Painted).png
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
Cathedral.png File:Cathedral (Painted).png
Cathedral 4 3 N/A Worship Services
Unholy Ground
Cost: 1 if not built adjacent to another Cathedral.
Notes: You may use the Create Gate Action to Create Cathedrals instead of Gates.
Special: If all 4 Cathedrals are in play, you may Awaken...without your own Great Old One. (When Awakening Cthugha this way, just pay 6 Power).
Availability: The Ancients {CW-F6} (x4)
Gate - The Ancients.png File:Gate - The Ancients (Painted).png
Gate 1 3 N/A
Notes: Used for Colour Out of Space
Availability: CW Onslaught 3 Stretch Goal Box {CW-E20} (x1), Eldritch Gate Pack {CW-U9-O3} (x1)

Other components[]

Other components
Image Component Quantity Notes
Faction Card - The Ancients.png
Faction Card 1
Availability: The Ancients {CW-F6} (x1)
Faction Token - The Ancients.png
Faction Token 1
Availability: The Ancients {CW-F6} (x1)
Power Marker - The Ancients.png File:Power Marker - The Ancients (Painted).png
Power Marker 1
Availability: The Ancients {CW-F6} (x1)
Doom Marker - The Ancients.png File:Doom Marker - The Ancients (Painted).png
Doom Marker 1
Availability: The Ancients {CW-F6} (x1)
Battle Dice - The Ancients.png
Battle Dice 20
Availability: Battle Dice - Ancients {CW-U22} (x20), All 200 Battle Dice! {CW-U24} (x20), ALL 240 BATTLE DICE {CW-U24-O4} (x20)
Neutral Unit Identifier - The Ancients.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[]

So, how does one PLAY this unusual new faction? Most obviously, you need to worry about your Cathedrals. Because you don’t have a Great Old One, you get major power savings, but this is ultimately negated by your need to spend 4-10 Power on Cathedrals. This is spread over time, however, so you never lose a whole turn to Awaken (unlike other factions). And your Cathedrals can earn extra Power, eventually reimbursing part or all of their cost.

You must balance your Cathedral construction with your Gate construction and your army. You need enough combat effectiveness to place your Cathedrals without undue interference. It may seem obvious to build a Cathedral in your starting Area on turn one, but that choice is still available later in the game. You are often better off building a second Gate in a neighboring area with a different glyph. You need a monster to protect your Gate too, so Brainless or Festival are good to aim at early on.

Your greatest advantages are first, how cost-effective your monsters are and second, your ability to engage in “social engineering” with the other players.

Your greatest weaknesses are first, your lack of a Great Old One, which renders your cultists vulnerable and second, your need to travel around the map. You must build strategies around this.

The real menace of the enemy Great Old Ones is not that they might fight you, but that they may Capture your cultists, against which you may seem defenseless. To avert this, you need to threaten battle (they’ll fear Cathedrals once you get Unholy Ground) or at least offer to withhold your favors of Cathedral placement and Festival.

You don’t need to fear combat. Your Un-Men is practically advantageous. Not only does it let you walk in place for a turn without spending Power, but you can strategically boost another player, presumably against a mutual enemy. Your Reanimated are often worth killing off instead of a Cultist, since a Reanimated pained off by itself is nigh-worthless. They’re cheap, too.

With Yothans, you have more battle dice than any Great Old One. Don’t unnaturally worry about losing them in battle – consider them an investment that needs to be cashed in at some point. You may need to pace out their loss however. In an ideal world, you’d lose your last Yothan on the last action of the last turn.

You don’t have any reliable way of getting bonus Elder Signs until later in the game, so you need to keep ahead with Gates.

Spellbook strategies[]

Recommended openers[]

Here is a sample plan for the Ancients. They have many possible choices. This is just one.

SETUP: Start in a spot that gives you at least three glyph options (hopefully more). For example, if you start in Earth’s North Atlantic, you’re adjacent to all four possibilities. Of course, this may leave you a little vulnerable, but remember Cthulhu Wars is about aggression, not passivity.

PHASE ONE: Move to an adjacent area, and build a Cathedral for 1 Power. Take Festival. Build a Gate at the Cathedral, then summon an Un-Man to guard it. (Choose someone far away from you to get the Festival power.) Move from your home area to an area NOT adjacent to the Cathedral, and build a Cathedral there. Do NOT defend this area – your plan is for another player to occupy it. Take another spellbook (I’d suggest Mindless or Worship Services.) Stall by summoning another Un-Man in your home area, or get a Reanimated.

In the Doom phase, use Dematerialize to move your home area Monster, plus a cultist or two to an area with a new glyph, not adjacent to your current areas. You’ll probably be vulnerable to another faction, so point out they’ll WANT your Cathedral to stay after you leave. (If you don’t have Worship Services yet, point out you may have it before next Doom phase.) You’ll end the turn with 10 Power and 2 Doom.

PHASE TWO: Build your third Cathedral, and take a useful spellbook. If you see other players plopping down Great Old Ones, you’ll want Extinction or Unholy Ground to defend yourself. In any case, you may want to take the spellbook that gives your foes their cheapest monsters this turn. Do this late in the turn, so they are short on Power to use their new toys. With luck your enemies will use their new freebies to fight one another instead of you. Take Consecration if you are not yet direly threatened. You have 9 Power left, so get a Yothan (if you have Extinction), plus build another Gate and guard it. If you don’t need a Yothan, you might be able to build a fourth Gate or your last Cathedral. Let’s assume you build that fourth Gate, instead of a Yothan. In any case you’ll need to spend Power to get your cultists in non-Gate areas to safety.

By the time of the Doom phase, assuming at least two other players have Gates at your Cathedrals, you start with 6 Doom, 16 Power, 4 Gates, and a fair number of monsters. Ritual, using Consecration to take an Elder Sign. You may be the first player to Ritual. If so, you’ll end up with 10 Doom, 11 Power, and an Elder Sign.

PHASE THREE: You may feel impressed by that 11 Power total plus a Ritual, but don’t forget, it means two other players got Power too. Plus if you’ve been steadily summoning Un-Men, your enemies are getting Power from that. Basically, when the Ancients are in play, ALL the other factions are a little stronger. So don’t get too cocky.

This turn you must aim at getting your last Cathedral placed. Don’t worry about trying to save Power by moving a long distance. Now that you have three Cathedrals already in play, it would be awkward anyway, so just suck up the 3 Power cost and get that sucker placed. Then start pulling out Yothans to hammer your enemies, steal their gates, and make them pay. You can get one big attack off each full turn with ease, using Dematerialization and proper preparation in the previous turn. I’ll assume you manage to hold onto your four gates (or capture one, but lose one), and build that last Cathedral during the course of play.

In the Doom phase, assuming three of your Cathedrals benefit from Worship Services, you should have 14 Doom and 17 Power. Do a Ritual of Annihilation (let’s assume it costs you 7). With four Cathedrals, you’ll get two more Elder Signs. At the ritual’s end, you have 18 Doom, 10 Power, and 3 Elder Signs. Plus if you planned carefully, you can Dematerialize and be in place to capture an enemy Gate with your Yothans & their little buddies.

PHASE FOUR: Use your 10 remaining Power to attack key positions and take Gates. If you are not afraid of losing a Yothan or two it shouldn’t be hard to get up to 5 Gates. You may need to sacrifice a Cathedral to take out an enemy Great Old One – if you do, rebuild it as soon as possible. Late in the turn, you should take your last spellbook – giving each enemy his “most expensive monster”. With luck, at least some enemies will already have those monsters on the tabletop, so they will be forced to take a cheaper monster from their pool.

In the Doom phase of this turn, you have 23 Doom, 17-18 Power, and 5 Gates. Naturally you should Ritual – this will bring up your Doom to 28, and now you have 5 Elder Signs, enough to end the game.

Note that this game only lasted four turns! Of course, I have assumed that your enemies didn’t mess with you too aggressively, or that if they did, they were not victorious. Naturally many games won’t go quite as smoothly for you. Beware Cthulhu using Submerge to annihilate your homeland, or Sleeper going on a rampage capturing your monsters when you are out of Power and defenseless. Or … any number of other possibilities. You have defenses, but it takes cunning and preparation to use them.