According to the rules, entering a fight during movement phase ends movement. But as the fight itself is part of the movement phase, this does not mean, that the whole phase ends.

We interpreted "movement ends" as "all remaining movement points expire", so you cannot read books after fighting. But it is not clear, if using cards, that can be used during movement phase without requiring movement points, is still allowed.

The question came up, because we wondered if the following steps we did in a recent game were legal:

  • walk to Nightgaunt and sneak past, intentionally failing (by having a too low sneak value)
  • Nightgaunt deals combat damage immediately, causing investigator to get drawn into nearest gate
  • Use Key of Tawil At Umr, usable during movement phase, to instantly return to Arkham
  • End movement phase, close and seal gate during same round the gate was entered

Is using Key of Tawil At Umr after a fight or any other of the above actions against the rules?

up vote 2 down vote accepted

No, it is not against the rules, and the sequence of events you followed is acceptable within a single Movement Phase.

Being drawn into combat of any kind only ends your movement - it does not end your Movement Phase, and some actions are still valid after combat.

While there is no specific case regarding the Key of Tawil At'Umr, it can be inferred from an entry in the Arkham Horror FAQ regarding the Find Gate spell in an identical situation (on page 7 under Spells):

Q: Can an investigator who entered the Other World during the Movement Phase because of the Nightgaunt’s combat ability immediately cast Find Gate and return to Arkham, experiencing no Other World encounters?

A: Yes.

Neither Find Gate nor Key of Tawil At'Umr have any other pertinent trigger details except that they must be used during the Movement Phase, so it is logical that if one is valid after a Nightgaunt effect, the other is also.

Also on page 9 of the FAQ under Gates and Other Worlds it clarifies reasons why you would (or would not) gain an explored marker:

Q: Do I receive an “explored” marker if I enter the first area of an Other World, cast “Find Gate,” and return to Arkham?

A: Yes. In general, whenever you “return to Arkham,” you reappear at a gate that leads to the Other World you were in and gain an “explored” marker.

Since the Key of Tawil At'Umr specifically uses the phrase "return to Arkham" you do gain an explored marker when it is used in an Other World.

If the rules are not clear, it's good to feel the climat of the game.

You're walking on the streets Arkham, trying to sneak in the shadows and avoid monsters. Suddenly the wild Nightgaunt appears and the fight begins. Unfortunately you're not good in fighting and the monster grabs you, fly with you over some rooftops and throws you right to the center of the gate to the other world. You end up in the centre of cyclopic city, frightened and confused...

This seems to be quite much. I don't think, that any investigator after such situation could immediately soberly think "Meh, no problem. I have the Key of Tawil At Umr."

Moreover such usage of the Key immediately after being dropped into the gate seems not to be enough to say "I've explored this world".

I would say, that the answer for your question is "Yes", but maybe there is someone who could provide some rules details, that might make it unequivocal.

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