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Peril in Pelargir


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#1 RGun

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Posted 24 November 2012 - 04:25 AM

I got a chance to play the first quest from the new expansion last night and I didn't get very far but early indications are that this will be a good set of quests.  I've just started playing 2-handed solo so I put together a Gondor and a Rohan deck and proceeded to start the first quest, which is difficulty level 5.  Usually I don't have much trouble with level 5 quests, but I quickly got trounced and within 5 turns my Gondor Heroes were all dead and I hadn't even made it past the first stage.

This quest starts in an Inn where you are given a secret scroll to protect, but immediately you are tracked down and a brawl in the inn breaks out.  It was the first Battle quest I had to deal with, which made my Rohan deck pretty useless and meant my Gondor heroes had to both carry the load questing and fighting which didn't end well for me.  I think I'll need to swap out the Rohan deck for a good tactics deck next time.

Overall, really enjoying this one so far.  The new mechanics and card effects I've seen so far are interesting, and I really felt like I was in a bar room brawl with thieves trying to steal the scroll from me.  It's also a nice change to get out of the dark dungeons of Moria and see some new/wilderness locations and enemies.



#2 CJMatos

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Posted 24 November 2012 - 04:33 AM

 How do you have the box, if it is still listed as Available soon?


Carlos José Matos


#3 RGun

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Posted 24 November 2012 - 04:34 AM

It arrived at my FLGS last Wednesday.



#4 MrMetlHed

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Posted 24 November 2012 - 07:04 AM

 I'm not the greatest player, but I found this quest very difficult. The mixing of Battle and normal questing can be difficult to build a deck for. Never mind the horrible engagement costs of some of the enemies. Seriously, the Zealous Traitor can die in a fire. And the Local Trouble treachery has ruined my day several times.

Have only made it to the last quest stage once, and suffered threat death right before completing the final quest that would have won the game for me. Time to retool my deck and try again -- this one is great fun.



#5 Glaurung

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Posted 24 November 2012 - 07:06 AM

Can you be more specific about quest and encounter cards???? I wiil get this set only after 1 week but already cannot wait to try it.


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#6 MrMetlHed

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Posted 24 November 2012 - 07:25 AM

 Okay, spoilers!!:

You start off in an Inn, battling your way out (you start at the Inn Location, which has a nasty "Discard X cards (X is the number of players in the game) adding any enemy discarded to the Staging area) through that location and the quest card. Then Battle your way through the city streets, and finally quest normally to the Quay and escape. The last stage prohibits you from optionally engaging enemies (which is an important bit…) 

The encounter deck is enemy heavy, and you have to quest early with your attack strength, so there's some balancing there. You also have to protect a scroll that will be taken by any enemy that damages you (have to have it to win).

The nastiness of the enemies come from their engagement costs and forced effects. The Harbor Thug engages whoever has the scroll when their threat goes up. The pickpocket takes a resource and a card at random when it attacks. The Lossarnach Bandit will take a resource from each hero (2 if not optionally engaged). The Zealous Traitor makes you deal one damage to each ally you control (2 if not optionally engaged). All of these add up to you constantly losing resources or allies.

There are some nasty shadow effects too. One (Collateral Damage) makes you discard two cards from the encounter deck, adding 2 threat for each location discarded.  Local Trouble attaches to your highest threat cost hero without Local Trouble attached to add a condition: "When attached hero exhausts, readies, or triggers an ability, raise its controller's threat by 1" -- Ouch.

The quest is great fun, but the enemies hit hard (3 attack on many of them) and come at you fast. I play solo and if you don't get something out quickly to defend you're going to be toast. I've ended up advancing to the last stage only twice in about 6 tries, and ended up getting the Collateral Damage treachery to raise my threat by 4 (when I was at 49) on what would have been a winning quest. Ouch.

Like I said. Good fun. Seems very tough, but I'm not an awesome player. Will have to retool my deck to see if I can beat it.



#7 lleimmoen

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Posted 24 November 2012 - 07:35 AM

Thanks a lot for your description; a very good read.



#8 MrMetlHed

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Posted 24 November 2012 - 07:35 AM

More spoilers:

Forgot about the locations. There's a handful. One, City Streets, has surge and forces you to travel to it before any other location. Another, Harbor Storehouse, makes you raise threat if locations are discarded. Market square is immune to player card effects and forces you to spend a resource to travel there. And finally, the Pelargir Docks add 1 to enemy attack and defense when it's active. 

The shadow effects are mostly geared towards ruining your day. One will cause you discard ALL of your resources, another forces you to deal all damage to whomever has the scroll, another makes you discard an attachment. There's also one that'll make you discard your hand and another that'll return the enemy to the staging area. So, again, lots of punishment to your team as a whole.



#9 MrMetlHed

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Posted 24 November 2012 - 07:40 AM

As an aside, when I saw it took place in a city I was very, very pleased. The art is very good and I love that it's a different sort of theme than we've had in the past. It was a very pleasant surprise.



#10 Glaurung

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Posted 24 November 2012 - 09:07 AM

Thanks a lot for info. Sounds very interesting!


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#11 Narsil0420

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Posted 24 November 2012 - 11:35 AM

More thanks for the really interesting information!

It seems like old Aragorn would be a really good choice for this scenario because of he can be a good quester either in normal or battle stages.



#12 starhawk77

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Posted 24 November 2012 - 12:01 PM

All three scenarios are fun, flavorful, and challenging. The second finds the heroes assisting some of Faramir's rangers as they ambush some Southrons, and the third involves defending various battlefield locations at Cair Andros. Both quests introduce a neat mechanic whereby certain quest cards can be removed from the game if the players accomplish optional objectives (keeping allies alive, exploring particular locations, etc.).

There's also the new archery keyword on some enemies and quest cards. At the start of each combat phase, players total the archery value on all cards in play and then distribute that much damage among any number of characters. Very simple mechanic, but it can add up really fast.

Pro tip: Elfhelm is an all-star in these quests, as is Warden of Healing or any other healing effect. 



#13 Zdawg88

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Posted 24 November 2012 - 04:50 PM

 I think I've played this first scenario around 10 times already now and have lost every time. Played mostly solo and with a Gondor themed deck each time. I've switched my heroes around and can't seem to find which three Gondor heroes work best together solo. I want to use the new Boromir for his buff ability, also Beregond for his blocking ability. I've then switched it up between Imrahil and Denethor. Having Lore and being able to get the healers is pretty nice for this scenario. Problem is when that one enemy engages you and deals damage to all your allies. That usually sets me back hard.  The one shadow effect that causes you to lose your entire hand sucks, as well as the one that causes you to lose attachments. I've lost a couple times on treachery too. A couple times I had 3 copies of the one treachery card in the discard pile so was discarding 8 cards from the deck. Proceeded to get 4 lands coupled with the storehouse being in play means I was raising my threat by 12. 

All in all a tough quest. I think the difficulty scale has evolved over time as a 5 is much harder then it use to be. I guess I'll have to break out my uber dwarf deck and give it a another go. 



#14 Beano

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Posted 25 November 2012 - 02:03 AM

Zdawg88 said:

 I think I've played this first scenario around 10 times already now and have lost every time. Played mostly solo and with a Gondor themed deck each time. I've switched my heroes around and can't seem to find which three Gondor heroes work best together solo. I want to use the new Boromir for his buff ability, also Beregond for his blocking ability. I've then switched it up between Imrahil and Denethor. Having Lore and being able to get the healers is pretty nice for this scenario. Problem is when that one enemy engages you and deals damage to all your allies. That usually sets me back hard.  The one shadow effect that causes you to lose your entire hand sucks, as well as the one that causes you to lose attachments. I've lost a couple times on treachery too. A couple times I had 3 copies of the one treachery card in the discard pile so was discarding 8 cards from the deck. Proceeded to get 4 lands coupled with the storehouse being in play means I was raising my threat by 12. 

All in all a tough quest. I think the difficulty scale has evolved over time as a 5 is much harder then it use to be. I guess I'll have to break out my uber dwarf deck and give it a another go. 

Gondor is weak  . . . I tried pretty hard to put together a Gondor deck that I thought would play well, but I just don't see it at this point. Hopefully it will improve, but Boromir's attack boost is really not that good of a synergy with the options available right now. Also the quest presents a highly variable start. There is a huge difference between just needing to deal with a couple of harbor thugs in a 2 player game compared to 5 or 6 enemies first turn with a little bad luck. As with many quests, the opening encounter draw has heavily impacted our fate.



#15 Glaurung

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Posted 25 November 2012 - 05:20 AM

Beano said:

Zdawg88 said:

 

 I think I've played this first scenario around 10 times already now and have lost every time. Played mostly solo and with a Gondor themed deck each time. I've switched my heroes around and can't seem to find which three Gondor heroes work best together solo. I want to use the new Boromir for his buff ability, also Beregond for his blocking ability. I've then switched it up between Imrahil and Denethor. Having Lore and being able to get the healers is pretty nice for this scenario. Problem is when that one enemy engages you and deals damage to all your allies. That usually sets me back hard.  The one shadow effect that causes you to lose your entire hand sucks, as well as the one that causes you to lose attachments. I've lost a couple times on treachery too. A couple times I had 3 copies of the one treachery card in the discard pile so was discarding 8 cards from the deck. Proceeded to get 4 lands coupled with the storehouse being in play means I was raising my threat by 12. 

All in all a tough quest. I think the difficulty scale has evolved over time as a 5 is much harder then it use to be. I guess I'll have to break out my uber dwarf deck and give it a another go. 

 

 

Gondor is weak  . . . I tried pretty hard to put together a Gondor deck that I thought would play well, but I just don't see it at this point. Hopefully it will improve, but Boromir's attack boost is really not that good of a synergy with the options available right now. Also the quest presents a highly variable start. There is a huge difference between just needing to deal with a couple of harbor thugs in a 2 player game compared to 5 or 6 enemies first turn with a little bad luck. As with many quests, the opening encounter draw has heavily impacted our fate.

Still believe for now My Thorin company deck will clash those quests without big problem. Anyway will see on the next week when i get it.


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#16 RGun

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Posted 25 November 2012 - 06:26 AM

 I also think this is a harder difficulty level 5 then previous ones.  There isn't a single killer treachery card or shadow effect like in some previous quests, but almost all of the treacheries and shadow effects are nasty and have a significant impact.  It also makes it more difficult when you need to share attack across both quest and combat.

I am still curious how FFG determines difficulty level.  I wonder if it is based on using all of the cards available in the latest cycle as I think that is how they playtest.



#17 Narsil0420

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Posted 25 November 2012 - 07:58 AM

To my mind, difficulty should be determined by win/loss percentage of a quest with the available cards. For example a scenario that you win 50% of the time you play it should be difficulty 5 and a scenario you win 70% of the time you play it should be a level 3. This is why I keep a reccord on Google Docs of my wins and losses each time I play, for each scenario. This lets me look back and compare my win ratio to the difficulty level to see how close FFG got. For instance, 'Into the Pit' and 'Watcher in the Water' both match up exactly with the difficulty level assigned to them. In contrast, Dead Marshes is way off because I've never lost a game of it out of 10 plus plays even though it's Level 5. Of course FF probably doesn't have the time to play a scenario as many times as it would take to get a clear picture every time.



#18 Narsil0420

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Posted 25 November 2012 - 08:03 AM

To my mind, difficulty should be determined by win/loss percentage of a quest with the available cards. For example a scenario that you win 50% of the time you play it should be difficulty 5 and a scenario you win 70% of the time you play it should be a level 3. This is why I keep a reccord on Google Docs of my wins and losses each time I play, for each scenario. This lets me look back and compare my win ratio to the difficulty level to see how close FFG got.

For instance, 'Into the Pit' and 'Watcher in the Water' both match up exactly with the difficulty level assigned to them. In contrast, Dead Marshes is way off because I've never lost a game of it out of 10 plus plays even though it's Level 5. Of course FF probably doesn't have the time to play a scenario as many times as it would take to get a clear picture every time.



#19 Zdawg88

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Posted 25 November 2012 - 08:34 AM

 Ok, so I finally beat this scenario (my first try after writing about it last night). I stuck with the Gondor theme cause I didn't want to give up that quick on it. I had one slight twist with using the Leadership Aragorn, but he's the King so that fits in with Gondor right?  Anyhow, I also used tactics Boromir, his readying ability is nice to quest and fight since you also start with some enemies off the bat. You can also use it on the first turn to pull the Harbor Thugs out of the staging area so you can quest further on the first turn to hopefully get the Leaping Fish location explored. Having that extra draw from the encounter deck each turn makes this quest tough at the beginning, especially since most games I played it ended up being an enemy card.   The other Hero I used was Elenor mainly to get rid of collateral damage and local trouble, which I still ended up with one of those.   Probably one of the cards that worked out the best for me was Hail of Stones. All those cheap Gondor allies don't hit very hard, but they are good at throwing rocks:)  The main target always being the zealous traitor since he kills off allies in droves. 

 

Now for scenario 2. 



#20 MrMetlHed

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Posted 25 November 2012 - 08:38 AM

Was able to finally beat this with leadership Aragorn, Tactics Boromir, and Beregond. Found that Vassal of the Windlord was hugely helpful in questing, but also very vulnerable to the Zealous Traitor (cheap, 3 attack).

Mostly I think I was just lucky. Still ended up with 48 threat, and needed a timely Sneak Attack with Faramir to help quest the last stage. Spear of the Citadel is also good on Beregond as I kept him back to block most time, and he can chip away at all the enemies. Eagles of the Misty Mountains were also helpful as they can quest equally well on all stages, and don't get insta-killed like the cheaper allies.

I love the Battle mechanic and hope that it sticks around past this cycle. I honestly think it should have been in since the beginning, it forces you to use a different mix of allies.






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