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In Mansion of Madness, my wife was in the laboratory. She then could not complete the puzzle in that room and the lights could not work. Then I had a cultist come in the room with her. Can she try to solve the puzzle for a second time to be able to turn on the lights before having to kill that cultist?

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Yes, she does not have to attack the monster and can solve the puzzle.

Combat occurs in two ways:

  1. If the character spends an action to attack the monster
  2. During the monster attack phase of the Keeper's turn the Keeper has the option of attacking with any monster in the same room as an investigator. (And usually will!).
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Just one thing to add. You need to perform an evade check for any action except attack when standing in the same area as a monster. – Skadlig Oct 15 '11 at 10:41
@Skadlig - Even if you fail the evade check, you can still work on the puzzle - it's just that the Keeper may opt to apply the monster's damage to you first. – gomad Oct 19 '11 at 17:30

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