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Two player dwarf decks with a pinch of elf

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#1 GrandSpleen



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Posted 04 April 2013 - 08:46 AM



Hi all,

I just wanted to share a pair of decks that I've been enjoying for 2-player games.  This is nothing fancy-- mostly dwarves, actually, and pretty typical card choices.  But where some decks that I've seen pair up Lore/Leadership due to excellent dwarf synergies in those spheres, I've chosen to split up some of the most powerful cards and paired Leadership/Spirit and Tactics/Lore.  I used to run Tactics/Spirit, but found that those two spheres play kind of sluggishly.  This one is a little better.  The Tactics deck also has a subspecialty of beefing up Legolas to take care of enemies on either side of the table.  Here are the deck lists:

Deck 1: Leadership/Spirit deck

Hero (3)
Dain Ironfoot (RtM) x1
Thorin Oakenshield (OHaUH) x1
Nori (OHaUH) x1

Ally (20)
Gandalf (Core) x3
Fili (OHaUH) x2
Gloin (OtD) x2
Kili (OHaUH) x2
Longbeard Elder (FoS) x3
Longbeard Orc Slayer (Core) x2
Zigil Miner (KD) x3
Imladris Stargazer (FoS) x3

Attachment (12)
Narvi's Belt (KD) x2
Steward of Gondor (Core) x2
King Under the Mountain (OtD) x3
Hardy Leadership (SaF) x1
Unexpected Courage (Core) x1
Ancient Mathom (AJtR) x3

Total cards: 50

Event (18)
A Test of Will (Core) x2
Hasty Stroke (Core) x2
Sneak Attack (Core) x2
To Me! O My Kinsfolk! (OtD) x3
A Very Good Tale (OHaUH) x3
We Are Not Idle (SaF) x3
Lure of Moria (RtR) x3

Deck 2: Tactics/Lore deck

Hero (3)
Legolas (Core) x1
Ori (OHaUH) x1
Bombur (OtD) x1

Ally (23)
Bofur (OHaUH) x2
Bifur (OtD) x2
Erebor Battle Master (TLD) x3
Erebor Hammersmith (Core) x2
Erebor Record Keeper (KD) x1
Miner of the Iron Hills (Core) x2
Veteran Axehand (Core) x3
Dori (OHaUH) x2
Gandalf (Core) x1
Rivendell Minstrel (THFG) x2
Warden of Healing (TLD) x3

Attachment (16)
Great Yew Bow (OtD) x2
Rivendell Blade (RtR) x2
Rivendell Bow (TWitW) x2
Horn of Gondor (Core) x1
Legacy of Durin (TWitW) x2
Resourceful (TWitW) x2
Asfaloth (FoS) x2
Song of Battle (TDM) x1
A Burning Brand (CatC) x2

Event (14)
Straight Shot (OtD) x3
Foe-hammer (OHaUH) x3
Feint (Core) x2
Hands Upon the Bow (SaF) x3
Daeron's Runes (FoS) x3

Total cards: 53

The Leadership/Spirit deck is pretty straight forward.  Lots of dwarf allies to take advantage of Dain's bonus.  There is also a Zigil Miner/Imladris Stargazer combo in there for a fairly reliable 2 resources per turn if you need it, but this deck really does not suffer for resource management.  Instead, the Zigil Miner is a solid quester while Dain is ready, and the Imladris Stargazer can be used just to improve your card draw, or for extra oomph during combat… more on that below.  Steward of Gondor is best played on Thorin along with Navri's Belt for excellent resource options.  Alternatively, play Steward of Gondor and Navri's Belt on Dain and wait for a Burning Brand from the other deck.  Or yet still, if you don't need the extra cash, put Steward of Gondor on a hero in the other deck. There are plenty of other ways to make money with this deck!

The Tactics/Lore deck wants to get card draw going early, so set up Ori's ability by getting a couple of dwarves down, get a weapon on Legolas for use with Foe-hammer, and get Legacy of Durin out early if you can.  Resources can be a problem, so it is often worthwhile to save up for Resourceful and put it on Ori (along with a Song of Battle, which you can search out courtesy of the Rivendell Minstrels).  Bombur is happy with Burning Brand.  Legolas's native ability pairs very well with Asfaloth to remove the active location.  Several cards also allow Legolas to target enemies in the staging area.  My favorite thing to do is be free with those Rivendell Blades -- not just Legolas, but Rivendell Minstrels or Imladris Stargazers (on othe other side of the table) can take them.  They can then help to attack and lower enemy defenses.  This also leaves enemies vulnerable to Straight Shot.  Just think: two Rivendell Minstrels with a Rivendell Blade each, add Straight Shot into the mix and you can do away with an enemy as fierce as a Hill Troll.  Not something you'll be doing every game, but pretty fun when you can manage it.  You might even tweak the deck a bit to add one more Rivendell Blade to the list.  Warden of Healing is in there as well for those quests that deal out a lot of damage.

This deck has handled easy-to-medium challenges, but we haven't tested it against very difficult quests yet.  We've done Passage through Mirkwood, Foundations of Stone, The Seventh Level, The Watcher in the Water, The Long Dark, and The Redhorn Gate.  Some quests require tweaking.  Bombur is not a good idea on The Redhorn Gate, for example, so I swapped in Elrond.  That worked well (but never quite got Ori's draw going).  You can also put in Dwalin for Nori on the Spirit side if you expect a lot of orcs, or get Balin in there to counter shadow effects in place of Thorin.

Ok, that's it for now!  Just thought I'd share.  Input is welcomed, I'm always on the lookout for fun little tricks to sneak into a deck!


#2 GrandSpleen



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Posted 04 April 2013 - 02:45 PM

Add Return to Mirkwood to the victory pile… got our best score ever on it, but it was really just luck from the encounter deck.  Only 3 enemies throughout the whole game!

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