The first time I played the Arkham Horror board game was at Anime Expo in 2006. I was on the Tabletop Gaming staff and I was waiting to see if anyone was going to show up for the event I’d scheduled. As I was kicking around, this guy started asking if anyone would be interested in learning a new game.

Megan was there too, so we both opted in. I played the mobster. Megan played the student. We had two or three other players, including the guy demoing the game. Then some people who wanted to participate in my event showed up, so I had to split my attention between running one game and playing in another. I got the group started on character creation.

The world was ending. Portals to strange worlds were opening up and monsters were flooding into the city of Arkham (the place for which Arkham Asylum is named in Batman). As things in the game looked to be at their worst, I had to get up and go check on the character creation at the other table.

Megan came over and informed me that the game was over and we’d won. But how? I had been gearing up for a heroic sacrifice to buy us some time! Well, it turned out one of the other guys (playing the scientist) had found a strange piece of advanced machinery capable of closing all of the portals simultaneously, which sent the Eldritch Horror back to sleep and saved the world. He rolled a lot of dice and had gotten very lucky.

I was left in a state of shock at the turn of events. We had won, but it was a hollow and short-lived victory. I knew I would have to buy the game myself and try again.