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Mono Spirit (solo) Caldara Deck


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#1 Tracker1

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Posted 18 December 2013 - 11:36 AM

As much as I hate the wait for the next expansion, at least it gives me some time to ponder over the new cards.  Many of the cards in this deck I thought were completely useless, especially the Hero Caldara, but with the following deck has pleasantly surprised me.  Of course this is not going to bring down the most difficult quests, although I have not tried it yet.  I gave it my Seventh Level and JDtA test.  I am a little nervous to try it on Battle and Siege quests. Here is the deck and some strategy notes below.

 

Hero (3)

Caldara (TBoG) x1

Glorfindel (FoS) x1

Eowyn (Core) x1

 

Ally (26)

Arwen Undomiel (TWitW) x2

Damrod (HON) x2

Emery (TBoG) x2

Ethir Swordsman (TSF) x3

Northern Tracker (Core) x3

Pelargir Shipwright (AoO) x3

White Tower Watchman (TDF) x3

Zigil Miner (KD) x3

Imladris Stargazer (FoS) x3

Elfhelm (TDM) x2

 

Attachment (6)

Light of Valinor (FoS) x3

Map of Earnil (AoO) x3

 

Event (18)

Dwarven Tomb (Core) x3

Elrond's Counsel (TWitW) x3

Fortune or Fate (Core) x3

Hasty Stroke (Core) x3

Hidden Cache (TMV) x3

A Test of Will (Core) x3

 

 

Strategy:

So this deck works very different then any I have played before, since it is more important to have cards in your discard pile then in your hand.  In many of the games I have played  I just had 1 or 2 cards in my hand, but with Caldara I would be bringing in two 3 or 4 cost allies almost every  turn.  

 

Here is how it works.  If you start of with high cost allies in your hand other than Emery just use Eowyn's discard ability during the quest phase to get them to the discard pile.  The most important card to see early on is Fortune of Fate.  Once you have that in hand start saving resources on Glorf and Eowyn.  The next 2 important cards are Dwarven Tomb and Map of Earnil.  You will be using these to recycle Fortune of Fate or Elrond's Counsel if threat starts to get high.

 

The next group of important cards are all about resource generation.  For this we rely on Zigil, stargazer and Hidden Cache.  

 

Now this is not an easy deck to play there is a lot of set up, but it is pretty cool when all the pieces fit together.  Once you have most of the ingredients.  High cost allies in the discard pile, Fortune of fate, retrieval card (tomb or map), and Stargazer/Miner combo then it is best to Discard Caldara at the most optimum time.  

 

So far I have found the best time to discard her is at beginning or end of the combat phase usually after she had defended and then I may bring in some allies to help with the attack.

 

Before she is discarded I try to follow these steps:

1) Use any of her remaining resources.  If I have Dwarven tomb in hand  I use it now  to fetch Fortune of fate.

2) Use the stargazer/miner combo.  This could put more high cost allies in the discard pile, and hopefully give you enough resources to put Caldara back into play before the end of the phase.  With Hidden Cache this could be between 3-4 resources.  

 

I usually want to make sure she will be put back into play before the end of the round.  This is important because I want her to start the next round with a resource, and if I have Pelargir Shipwrights in play I want to make sure they will be questing for 3 next round, since their willpower is based on the number of Spirit heroes in play.

 

Overall it is a very interesting deck and it totally changed how I played the game.  I am now very eager to see how this deck will stand up on the VoI scenarios, since it seems like the new quests intend to penalize a player for having a lot of cards in hand.  Not so with this deck the discard pile is where I will be playing my cards from.

 

Alway open to feed back.

Thanks

 

 

 

 

 

 


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'At last' said Aragorn 'Here are the tracks that we seek!'

#2 camacazio

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Posted 18 December 2013 - 12:40 PM

I had a similar Caldara deck a little while ago, and I recently remade it including Lay of Nimrodel. That gives a really fun push, and gives a really nice use for any excess resource from the Zigil Miner. My main problem with hidden cache, though almost obviously meant to work well with Emery and Zigil Miner, is I always have a really hard time including a card in a deck with the only purpose of being discarded, so maybe consider swapping the cache for the lay. I recommend finding a way to stuff in another Emery; that is an absurdly good ally to drop first turn and still buy Arwen or Pelargir Shipwright. So maybe consider bailing on the cach for two lays and a third emery?



#3 Tracker1

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Posted 18 December 2013 - 12:54 PM

Emery is really good in the deck. Might be worth the 3 copies for a better chance of getting her first turn. I was really liking the cache. My only problem is that my only other 0 cost card in the deck is Elrond's Counsel, and i usually do not want to discard it when the miner digs the, both up with the help of stargazer, although if I'm in a pinch it's a way to get 4 resources fast.

The Lay could also work really nicely in the deck, since i have had Eowyn with up to 8 resources before, it could even be a target for for Dwarven Tomb. Might give it a try. Thanks.
'At last' said Aragorn 'Here are the tracks that we seek!'

#4 Noccus

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Posted 18 December 2013 - 03:31 PM

Nice creative deck mate! I like it! Thanks for posting.

I'm certainly going to try it out, as it sounds like a fun new playstyle. (in LotR LCG that is)

 

And I would not swap out the cache.

I've been playing around with it and really enjoy the card.

Used it with a smile on my face to great effects I did.

That, and you probably need those precious resources anyway to cast F&F consistantly.

Also, Lay may be overkill with all the willpower you have.

 

The only card I'm not sure about is white tower watchman?

Is he any good? And in this deck? As I never used him.


Edited by Noccus, 18 December 2013 - 03:32 PM.

"Not all those who wander are lost"

#5 Tracker1

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Posted 18 December 2013 - 04:04 PM

 
The only card I'm not sure about is white tower watchman?
Is he any good? And in this deck? As I never used him.


Yeah I decided to give him a try since his ability is dependent on 3 heroes of the same sphere. He's not bad to have in play since he gives you some insurance if you need to take an attack undefended. He is a solid defender and he is up to 3 with Arwen. He is also good for taking a hit from a hill troll since your threat will not go up that much. You can always get him back with Caldara afterwards if you need to. He certainly is not essential to the deck, just trying to use some cards that don't see much light.
'At last' said Aragorn 'Here are the tracks that we seek!'

#6 Noccus

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Posted 18 December 2013 - 05:16 PM

This is from the top of my head, but doesn't Caldara only allow the return of spirit allies?

 

Solid logic tho on adding him, as the deck lacks healing.


Edited by Noccus, 18 December 2013 - 05:16 PM.

"Not all those who wander are lost"

#7 Tracker1

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Posted 18 December 2013 - 05:26 PM

This is from the top of my head, but doesn't Caldara only allow the return of spirit allies?
 
Solid logic tho on adding him, as the deck lacks healing.


Yep, you are right. she can't retrieve him. Still a solid card though.
'At last' said Aragorn 'Here are the tracks that we seek!'

#8 Bullroarer Took

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Posted 18 December 2013 - 10:20 PM

Great job Tracker! I love seeing new play styles.
"I will not be released in the second quarter!" - Nalir the Dwarf

#9 Glaurung

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Posted 19 December 2013 - 03:14 AM

Nice creative deck mate! I like it! Thanks for posting.
I'm certainly going to try it out, as it sounds like a fun new playstyle. (in LotR LCG that is)
 
And I would not swap out the cache.
I've been playing around with it and really enjoy the card.
Used it with a smile on my face to great effects I did.
That, and you probably need those precious resources anyway to cast F&F consistantly.
Also, Lay may be overkill with all the willpower you have.
 
The only card I'm not sure about is white tower watchman?
Is he any good? And in this deck? As I never used him.


He is very good. most of the time he is auto include to any mono deck.

Wizard is never late.......

 

Glaurung playtrough LOTR LCG on youtube :

http://www.youtube.com/user/olegyd   


#10 Tracker1

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Posted 19 December 2013 - 03:16 AM

Wow this deck almost beat Morgul Vale. One Game I lost to threat, but played it out and won at 55 threat, the loss was due to the treachery on the last round that increases threat for each progress on the tower. The other game I lost with to many progress tokens on the Tower i played it out and won at 12 tokens. I also had a lot of straight out loses. This is really tough quest, With a bit of luck I think this deck could win it. Caldara did an awesome job of bringing in chump blockers every couple rounds. The great thing was I never ran out of allies.

Edit:

Just got a victory on MV with this deck. 13 rounds, 46 threat, 2 damage, and Caldara in discard
pile.

Edit 2:

Got 1 victory out of 3 attempts on Dol Guldur.
Caldara was the star of the show. My threat was at 37 and i engaged the Nazgul. I had enough progress on the 2nd stage. So Caldara attached the last 2 objectives to advance to stage 3 then she defended the Nagul with the help of Arwen, then she was discarded to bring in 2 northern trackers to help finish of the Nazgul. Also by discarding her I also got rid of the 2 objectives which were no longer needed. i quested out the last stage in one and avoided the bees which had been looming since early in the game.

My opinion of Caldara has done a complete 180, she is really good. In some ways her ability is almost similar to an Elrond/Vilya combo. I just can't wait for some more high cost spirit heroes.

Now it's off to MaO for the Nazgul hat trick.

Update
TMaO was easy. That quest is not what it used to be.

Tried PiP and was able to hold its own and won first attempt. Not bad on this battle quest.

Edited by Tracker1, 19 December 2013 - 08:37 AM.

'At last' said Aragorn 'Here are the tracks that we seek!'

#11 Noccus

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Posted 19 December 2013 - 05:44 AM

 

Nice creative deck mate! I like it! Thanks for posting.
I'm certainly going to try it out, as it sounds like a fun new playstyle. (in LotR LCG that is)
 
And I would not swap out the cache.
I've been playing around with it and really enjoy the card.
Used it with a smile on my face to great effects I did.
That, and you probably need those precious resources anyway to cast F&F consistantly.
Also, Lay may be overkill with all the willpower you have.
 
The only card I'm not sure about is white tower watchman?
Is he any good? And in this deck? As I never used him.


He is very good. most of the time he is auto include to any mono deck.

 

Hmmm, I should give him a try then.

I've build a weird mono lore deck yesterday, and will give him a go.


"Not all those who wander are lost"

#12 Noccus

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Posted 19 December 2013 - 05:51 AM

Got 1 victory out of 3 attempts on Dol Guldur.
Caldara was the star of the show. My threat was at 37 and i engaged the Nazgul. I had enough progress on the 2nd stage. So Caldara attached the last 2 objectives to advance to stage 3 then she defended the Nagul with the help of Arwen, then she was discarded to bring in 2 northern trackers to help finish of the Nazgul. Also by discarding her I also got rid of the 2 objectives which were no longer needed. i quested out the last stage in one and avoided the bees which had been looming since early in the game.

My opinion of Caldara has done a complete 180, she is really good. In some ways her ability is almost similar to an Elrond/Vilya combo. I just can't wait for some more high cost spirit heroes.

 

Sounds like you had a great game!

The discarding to get rid of the objectives part is cool. 

I would not have though of that.


Edited by Noccus, 19 December 2013 - 05:52 AM.

"Not all those who wander are lost"

#13 Tracker1

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Posted 19 December 2013 - 05:54 AM

Got 1 victory out of 3 attempts on Dol Guldur.
Caldara was the star of the show. My threat was at 37 and i engaged the Nazgul. I had enough progress on the 2nd stage. So Caldara attached the last 2 objectives to advance to stage 3 then she defended the Nagul with the help of Arwen, then she was discarded to bring in 2 northern trackers to help finish of the Nazgul. Also by discarding her I also got rid of the 2 objectives which were no longer needed. i quested out the last stage in one and avoided the bees which had been looming since early in the game.
My opinion of Caldara has done a complete 180, she is really good. In some ways her ability is almost similar to an Elrond/Vilya combo. I just can't wait for some more high cost spirit heroes.

Sounds like you had a great game!
The discarding to get rid of the objectives part is cool. 
I would not have though of that.

You can also do it with condition treachery cards. I got rid of Caught in the Web that way too.
'At last' said Aragorn 'Here are the tracks that we seek!'

#14 camacazio

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Posted 19 December 2013 - 12:26 PM

That surprised me, that feature. It is a big added bonus to shove local trouble on her, maybe an archery hit, then just dump her in a river somewhere.


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#15 Bullroarer Took

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Posted 19 December 2013 - 02:33 PM

That surprised me, that feature. It is a big added bonus to shove local trouble on her, maybe an archery hit, then just dump her in a river somewhere.


That's just cold! LOL
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#16 joezim007

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Posted 20 December 2013 - 12:07 AM

It's amazing how a card that everyone hates can turn out to be so powerful.


I once shot an arrow through the pupil of a pig's eye from 300 yards away! Sadly, I was aiming for a different pig.


#17 Tracker1

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Posted 20 December 2013 - 08:19 AM

I am still utterly baffled by how good Caldara is, and this deck is really impressing me with what it is able to handle.

Just a quick session report.
I'm playing Nightmare JDtA finally make it to stage 3. I am feeling pretty confident that I can handle the 2 cards drawn. First card Pursuit on the Shore. Which returns the enemy with the highest hight points from your victory display or discard pile, okay a Hill troll, alright I can handle this, second card another Hill Troll. Oh, s%#t, also my threat is just at 30, and I have two pesky rats to deal with until i can get rid of the trolls. This is truly a nightmare.

In steps Caldara, Fortune of fate, Dwarven tomb, Stargazer, Zigel and a small army of Allies. Two rounds later the trolls are destroyed and the rats flee. Caldara's ability to defend one rat, leave play, retrive 2 high hit point chump blockers for the trolls, then return with FoF to defend the other rat, then my 3 Trackers, Damrod, Elfhelm, Glorfindel out one troll. Then she is able to do the same thing all over again the next round for the second troll.

This is amazing, her ability basicaly provided 4 actions, that would have been used by other valuable allies in play, in a normal deck I would have also lost two of allies in play to the trolls with no way of getting them back easily. Many other deck's I have played would probably have fell apart in this situation. But Caldara was able to bring back the same two allies next round as defenders. Of course it cost 11 resources to pull off, but this is what this deck is desighned to do.

She may be one of my new faviorite heroes. Still in shock.

Made 2 card changes to the deck. Removed 1 Hasty Stroke, and 1 map of Earnil for Bofur and Dwalin great unique allies for the deck.
I'm also thinking about adding Eomund for 1 Eithr Swordsmen. Since I can see him being a good chump blocker and when leaving play he can ready Elfhelm and Eowyn, could be another neat combo that I have never used.
'At last' said Aragorn 'Here are the tracks that we seek!'

#18 joezim007

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Posted 20 December 2013 - 09:21 PM

I love Edmund, but ife all you have is Elfhelm and Eowyn, he's better off being left out since Eowyn doesn't have the stats for anything but questing and Elfhelm is somewhat unreliable since you need to draw and play him first

I once shot an arrow through the pupil of a pig's eye from 300 yards away! Sadly, I was aiming for a different pig.


#19 Bullroarer Took

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Posted 21 December 2013 - 03:21 PM

Tracker, if you get a chance I would love to read a play test report on this deck. (And I doubt I'm alone as this is the first recursion deck in the game.)
"I will not be released in the second quarter!" - Nalir the Dwarf

#20 Tracker1

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Posted 21 December 2013 - 05:53 PM

Tracker, if you get a chance I would love to read a play test report on this deck. (And I doubt I'm alone as this is the first recursion deck in the game.)


I'll see if I can get around to it. I have always found it a bit tedious to give a round by round report, since I hate to break the flow to record every nuance. My suggestion is you should just try the deck, or something similar to get the first hand experience. Don't be surprised if you are completely baffled at first, since this deck will radically change how you used to playing. Give it a few goes on some of the easier quests, and you will start to get a sense for how it is supposed to work. The opening hand can have a big influence on how the game goes. A poor hand and the deck will feel really slow, with one or 2 critical pieces in the opening hand then you are good to go. So far I think stargazer might be the most important card early on since she is going to control which card you draw each round and which cards get put in the discard pile. I dislike using discard abilities without her aid, since I am likely to lose some events or attachments that I would rather have in my hand.

I would be curious to hear other players feedback on a deck design like this. I hope it does not just work for me. I enjoy this type of deck because it opens up a whole new strategy, although it probably will not be everyones cup of tea.

Give it a go and let me know how it goes.

I have not done a video in awhile. That would be the best way for you to see how it plays. I may be able to do one over the next couple of weeks.
'At last' said Aragorn 'Here are the tracks that we seek!'




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