Gloomhaven Nightshroud Guide – Cards, Builds, Perks, Enhancements & Items

Last Updated on November 9, 2023 by Samuel Franklin

Gloomhaven Nightshroud Guide – Cards, Builds, Perks, Enhancements & Items

In our guide to the Gloomhaven Nightshround players will learn the important cards, perks and enhancements available to create an ideal assassination and invisibility focused build. Including your card options from your starting choices all the way to level 9 you’ll be able to build an assassin that enemies never see coming with some alternative options also included based on your playstyle preferences that alter from my personal recommendations when playing as this dark themed Gloomhaven mercenary.

Serving as one of the unlockable class options in Gloomhaven the Nightshroud (Eclipse) belongs to the Aesther which allows them to master the darkness and power of sheer assassination. While the Nightshroud has human like features of the other Aesther characters players encounter during the campaign this race has long left the physical world that your core adventure takes place to travel across the planes for knowledge while being forced to witness the good and bad infinite possibilities across these planes. Often compared to the starting Scoundrel players will find some similarities such as the 9 hand size and medium health pool but also plenty of differences that ensure this class has different game mechanics to master. These mechanics include easy access to invisibility, the ability to execute enemies (including elites) and a general theme towards burst damage using the element of dark that an experienced Gloomhaven player can manipulate to maintain a level of damage well above other characters by planning out the entire scenario room. While this can result in a somewhat selfish playstyle the Nightshroud will still benefit from allies particularly ones that bring element generation or can keep enemies at bay during your down time while helping you to manage your low movement values and smaller hand size.

For information and build guides on other Gloomhaven character options visit our Gloomhaven classes overview and the related Gloomhaven class tier list. Note that from this point onwards this guide contains full card spoilers for this class and minor item spoilers (general themes only and not specific non starting items).

Table of Contents:
Nightshroud Cards, Perks, Enhancements and Items Overview
Nightshroud Cards Detailed
Nightshroud Perks Detailed
Nightshroud Enhancements Detailed
Nightshroud Items Detailed

Gloomhaven Nightshroud Guide Overview

The overview section below provides a template to playing the Nightshroud that balances all of the tools that this dark class has available that ensure players have the necessary cards to face the demonic enemies of the campaign. For players that wish to push the Nightshroud towards specific strengths due to their current party dynamics or preferences the detailed section further down this guide includes my recommendations for adjustments that you can make although this is best reserved for intermediate to advanced players.

The Nightshroud overview is intended for first time Nightshroud players or generally beginner Gloomhaven players that wish to follow clear guidance across cark, perk, enhancements and starting item choices that they can reference easily while playing the digital or board game version. The resulting suggestions ensure that players acquire key movement cards where necessary, have the foundation to generate their own dark elements and maximise the ability to use your assassination cards which is a critical theme to the Nightshroud gameplay loop.


Nightshroud Cards Overview

  • Level 1: Remove Wings of the Night, Concealed Dominance and Black Knives
  • Level 2: Prepare for the Kill replaces Dancing Shadows
  • Level 3: Terror Blade replaces Enervating Wound
  • Level 4: Grim Sustenance replaces Dark Cloud
  • Level 5: Black Arrow replaces Empowering Void
  • Level 6: Swallowed by Fear replaces Terror Blade
  • Level 7: Quiet Frenzy replaces Silent Force
  • Level 8: Lurking Ruin replaces Cloak of Shade
  • Level 9: Angel of Death replaces Spirit of the Night

Nightshroud Perks Priority Overview

  • Ignore negative item effects and add two +1 cards
  • Remove two -1 cards (take twice)
  • Add two rolling curse cards
  • Add one -1 dark card
  • Replace one -1 dark card with a +1 dark card
  • Add one -1 dark card (second time)
  • Replace one -1 dark card with a +1 dark card (second time)
  • Add one +1 invisible card (twice)
  • Remove four zeros
  • Add two rolling heal +1 cards

Nightshroud Enhancements Priority Overview

  • Add Move the bottom of Smoke Step and Prepare for the Kill (add multiple move)
  • Add a debuff (curse/disarm/immobilise/poison/wound) to the top of Doomed Breeze

Nightshroud Items Priority Overview

  • Minor Stamina Potion
  • Boots of Striding
  • Cloak of Invisibility
  • Minor Healing Potion


Gloomhaven Nightshroud Guide Detailed

In this detailed section of the Nightshroud build guide I explore some of the alternative options you’ll encounter during your journey to retirement as the Nightshroud. Like other Gloomhaven decisions these will be heavily influenced by your party members and the party size with the factors to consider discussed below so that you can apply them to your own situation given there are simply too many potential combinations to specifically cover. The detailed section is also designed to explain the decision trees of the overview section to help you understand the general build playstyle or reasons for certain decisions of other cards that may seem to be equal in terms of power at first glance. For the Nightshroud your goals in card selection are to optimise movement, dark generation, assassination and remove any loss cards as our 9 hand size cannot support loss cards and we would rather be burning cards through short rests for quicker assassination cycles if required rather than playing a loss card.

Nightshroud Cards Detailed

The Nightshroud has a few considerations at particular levels that can alter your playstyle and are explored below based on level up order along with general card usage tips and potential issues to avoid.

  • Starting Cards: Concealed Dominance is an absolute must remove from our starting hand given it offers two burn actions with neither being particular good while also being dark reliant that means it simply isn’t a card players will use. Your other starting cards for removal are a little closer but I will generally recommend Wings of the Night and Black Knives as we don’t want to use the persistent effects that make them essentially half a card in terms of usability as if you don’t remove these you are likely making a sacrifice for something useful elsewhere.
  • Level 2 Cards: Prepare for the Kill will quickly become one of your favourite cards in your entire hand that make it an absolute must take at level 2 given it has dark generation on both top and bottom for all sorts of combo setups with our dark focused kit. It is also an enhancement priority for additional move to ensure we can position for enemy kills and generally advance through a scenario map without delay.
  • Level 3 Cards: A much closer decision for card choice is the level 3 cards with both being perfectly viable and one that will be influenced by party composition and dynamics. The reason I recommend Terror Blade in the overview section is the value of the large 3 push value for trap damage which can also sometimes be used defensively or setup an ally attack while also providing us another large movement card. Armour of the Night is also a great card though as it adds a consistent 4 attack with some healing potential when dark is available and even adds another dark generator with shield to our hand of cards. If I expect to take a little more damage due to the party composition I would lean towards taking Armour of the Night and ultimately you’ll replace both of these level 3 cards because our later cards are simply that good so don’t agonise too much over this decision.
  • Level 4 Cards: Grim Sustenance is a clear winner for the Nightshroud at Level 4 with a uniquely useful top that will turn us invisible after a relatively weak attack (unless already invisible), this allows us to play aggressively into an enemy position when necessary to setup future turn. The bottom loot is less of a factor as we should generally leave that to other mercenaries so we don’t fall behind but can pay dividends from time to time.
  • Level 5 Cards: Selecting Black Arrow provides us something we haven’t had up to this point which is a hard hitting ranged attack to help our team if we do fall behind or simply can’t get into melee position for an attack or assassinate. With the added benefit of curse and muddle it can also reduce the overall damage our team takes as a nice side effect or allow us to go invisible with a quick initiative if we’ve overstepped in a previous round.
  • Level 6 Cards: Level 6 takes the power of the Nightshroud to a whole new level with Swallowed by Fear giving us the power to assassinate any target with dark and another element that make it the obvious choice. This also gives us an alternative source of push if our team is desperate which makes replacing Terror Blade a good option.
  • Level 7 Cards: With Eyes of the Night offering us nothing of value as the bulk of our power comes from assassinations which are not subject to the advantage/disadvantage mechanic the Quiet Frenzy card is our obvious choice with a decent bottom attack and a potential 8 attack card if we can combo invisible and dark at the same time that makes the preplanning of turns so critical to our damage output.
  • Level 8 Cards: Level 8 is quite possibly the hardest decision for the Nightshroud yet with both cards perfectly viable depending on how your playstyle is shaping up. I recommend Lurking Ruin as your default choice for the easy move and invisibility setup while also providing a solid attack 5 on top with some debuff potential if already invisible. I don’t mind Gloom Darts in a melee heavy party composition though and in particular larger party sizes where invisible is less important and you find it hard to constantly get a spot in the front line in your team as in these instances the Gloom Darts allows you to stack curses, poison and damage on up to 3 targets at range.
  • Level 9 Cards: Turning us into the Angel of Death your choice here is obvious with the potential to take out every normal enemy around us with the power of dark. Your threshold for using this top burn action will vary based on party size but in a full party I’d aim for at least 3 or 4 enemies in early rooms and steadily lower that threshold as you reach the later parts of the scenario. As if the top wasn’t powerful enough we get a bottom assassinate with a jump that means no normal enemy is safe.


Nightshroud Perks Detailed

The Nightshroud has some interesting perk choices and limited opportunity to improve your modifier deck that keeps our damage in check when not assassinating an enemy outright. Given your ability to consistently assassinate doesn’t become available for some time players should focus their early levels on improving the modifier deck as best they can like any other Gloomhaven character with the ignore negative item effects and remove -1 card choice. I’d also consider the rolling curse cards at this point as curse is always useful to add and the rolling helps our damage output with our non assassinate attacks once again.

From here it’s time to turn towards the interesting add -1 dark cards and then replace them with +1 dark cards as soon as possible so its an overall gain before continuing onto other +1 options and removing zeroes. Of the other options the invisible is one of our best option given it is also +1 with the rolling priority being healing of what is left given add target and muddle are not guaranteed to be useful.


Nightshroud Enhancements Detailed

Move is our number one enhancement priority for the Nightshroud and is thankfully also a cheap enhancement purchase that is best placed on Smoke Step and Prepare for the Kill as these are our primary movement and dark generators. If players want they can consider place a jump on one or both of these although this is likely applicable in larger party sizes with a melee focus as you might need to jump over enemies to get in the perfect spot.

From here any other enhancement is really just a quality of life and generally too expensive to seriously consider but it includes the likes of dark generation on Swallowed by Fear or if your team is really struggling to feed you the extra non dark element you need for your elite assassination finding a bottom or top action to generate a different element is also an option.


Nightshroud Items Detailed

For starting items focus the Nightshroud will want to look towards Boots of Striding for the added movement and the always powerful Minor Stamina Potion which will help us get our critical cards back at the perfect moment while Cloak of Invisibility adds another invisibility option for defence initially and with the right cards becomes an offensive item by empowering an attack.

After starting items players will want to keep an eye out for items that provide extra turns, recovery of cards or items and generate elements which all help us achieve our assassination objectives in scenarios.

Written by
Samuel Franklin
Samuel Franklin is the founder and lead editor of the Games Finder team and enjoys video games across all genres and platforms.

Gloomhaven is one of Sam’s favourite board games and he finds himself regularly playing the convenient digital version alone and with friends. He enjoys the tactical turn based combat and unique characters that Gloomhaven offers with his favourite being the Spellweaver.

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