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About AstroSnail

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  1. Finally beat it 4-player. I used victory display manipulation with a 2-hero deck consisting of Spirit Merry and Lore Denethor. I decided that Harad Road was the encounter card that was most dangerous in a 4-player game, and used a first-turn Out of the Wild to remove one from the deck, and a turn-two Leave No Trace to remove the second one. Removed an Uruk Pursuer with None Returned, and avoided a second Uruk Pursuer with The Door is Closed! The Orcs only had 5 progress on stage 4D when we cleared River Harnen. Overall, I'd say this support deck greatly enhanced our chances of success. Denethor frequently checked the encounter deck after questing but before the end of the quest phase (to try and minimize the amount of extra progress the Orcs made). The other three decks were a Celeborn/Galadriel/Elrond Silvan deck, a Faramir/Bifur/Mablung Ent deck, and a Gloin/Erestor/Erkenbrand defense deck.
  2. Yep, I concur with Bullroarer. This is a really tough quest, especially on 4-player. The fact that you cannot place more than 10 progress on the quest each round really keeps up the tension and makes the game feel like a race, no matter how good your deck is. You can't win this quest the traditional way - that is, with good questing and enemy control. Those are still essential, but they're not quite enough to put you over the top. At the moment, I'm inclined to say that winning this quest requires quite a bit of luck, at least on 4 player. It's really unusual (at least, in the 2 games I've played so far) to see the Orcs put less than 10 progress on their stage each round. You might think that Radagast's Cunning would be the key to winning this quest, but that effect only lasts "until the end of the [quest] phase", whereas the orcs place progress "at the end of the quest phase". Same goes for Secret Paths. The best trick I can think of is to use encounter deck manipulation (Lore Denethor, Risk Some Light) to ensure that the Orcs don't place a few extra progress each round.
  3. If the announcement schedule of the last couple of years is any indication, then we should see the announcement article for the sixth saga box, "The Mountain of Fire" in the middle or end of April. Anyone else want to predict which heroes we'll see in that box? I suspect that we'll see a Leadership and a Tactics hero, along with a new Fellowship Ringbearer and Fellowship Aragorn. A Leadership and Tactics hero would round out the distribution of heroes among the four main spheres (so far in the saga boxes, we've gotten 2 Leadership heroes, 2 Tactics heroes, 3 Spirit heroes, and 3 Lore heroes). We've also gotten 1 Neutral hero, 3 copies of Fellowship Frodo, and 2 copies of Fellowship Aragorn. My guess right now is that we'll see: Leadership Frodo Tactics Gwaihir Fellowship Sam (Ringbearer) Fellowship Aragorn (maybe w/ Gondor trait?) Anyone else want to speculate?
  4. I used Dwarf Pipe to great effect in a dwarf/noldor deck last night. Not only does it allow you greater control over the card type of the top card in your discard pile (so the noldor allies from The Grey Havens can get their respective boosts when you need them), it also allows you to recur Hidden Cache. You need a way to mine down to the bottom of your deck, or a way to shuffle your deck, both of which are pretty easy to do with the current card pool. When you only have two copies of hidden cache and a copy of Lords of the Eldar in your deck, you basically win. :-)
  5. Is it just me, or is participation down for this year's Fellowship event? We usually get ~16 players in my neck of the woods, but this year we're only expecting 10. I wonder if this is a consequence of offering the same scenario for both the GenCon and Fellowship events...
  6. Don't we all? I also want to know that 3 wp spirit gal's text. I must have missed this - what 3-willpower spirit (Dunedain?) ally?
  7. To date, every Adventure Pack has included 8-10 (usually 9) new player cards, plus a new hero. As the game grows, the number of possible decks has exploded, to the point where the addition of just one new card sometimes opens up a new deck archetype, usually with multiple variations (e.g., Strider, Sword-Thain, Elven Light, Gather Information). And nearly every hero opens up a new deck archetype. I would almost rather see just a few player cards published each cycle (say, 8 in a deluxe and 2 in each adventure pack), especially if those player cards that did get published were of the calibre of the examples I gave above. The adventure packs themselves might start to include two quests instead of just one, or to include encounter card setups that make use of the larger number of cards. Heck, maybe they'd start to publish the nightmare decks simultaneously and include them in the adventure pack! I'm not even sure this change would decrease sales of the game - I enjoy playing the new quests, especially because I'm interested in seeing what new ways the designers have come up with to challenge us or to smash powerful deck archetypes. And, if the player cards were as game-changing as some of the examples I gave above, I certainly wouldn't mind. As it is, only about half of the player cards that I get these days actually make it into decks. Partly this is because of a lack of time on my part, and partly because some of the player cards are very conditional and require careful deck-building (Master Ironsmith, Guarded Ceaselessly, Arrows from the Trees, Scouting Party). But I digress. My original query was: would you balk if FFG published fewer player cards?
  8. I haven't seen a new piece from Magali this cycle. She illustrated the new Éowyn for Flame of the West, but that might have been done months ago. Is she still working on the LotR LCG?
  9. This sounds awesome. A universal buff that makes the mounts - most of which are already very playable - even more fantastic. Hobbit Pony on (spirit) Merry or Frodo. Rohan Warhorse on (tactics) Merry, (tactics) Aragorn. Firefoot on Eomer now gives him 8 attack (if a character has left play) Snowmane on either version of Theoden (still slightly better on tactics Theoden, since he would quest for 3 and attack for 4) The new Armored Destrider on (leadership) Aragorn lets him quest for 3 (if he has Celebrian's Stone) ready (if you pay 1 resource), defend for 3, and attack for 3. Arod on Legolas lets him swing for 4 (and doesn't take up a restricted slot) Asfaloth on (spirit) Glorfindel Steed of Imladris on Idraen (or any questing spirit hero, really) As 13nrv pointed out, Armored Destrider is fantastic on Amarthiul
  10. Armored Destrier works pretty well on Dori, too. Use him to defend the first attack, then ready and use him to boost the defense of another defending hero. Mostly, I'm really happy to see the Sentinel keyword get some serious support in this pack. There's a hyper-defense deck of sorts now, with Erkenbrand, Dori, and Beregond, lots of sentinel allies, and all the great sentinel support cards.
  11. Me too! I'm really hoping for another hero who plays with locations. Idraen is one of my all-time favorite heroes, just because she encouraged such a unique style of location-control.
  12. War Equipment is perfect for Erkenbrand. A defense boost and two extra hit points to cancel a couple more shadow cards before you have to heal him. Tireless Guard is great for Idraen - you quest with her, clear the active location with Lorien Guide or Steed of Imladris, and then after staging you exhaust her to reduce the threat of a pesky location by 2. Before, there wasn’t quite as much of an incentive to clear the active location when she was questing. If Tireless Guard really doesn’t have a limit, then it could prove especially useful on 4-threat (or more) locations that you don’t want to travel to. And it makes any 0- or 1-willpower Scout or Ranger characters slightly better during the questing phase. Tireless Guard is also a soft solution to location lock - assuming you have the allies to support multiple copies of it. I’ve been playing with a proxy of Eldahir, and he’s outstanding, especially in a Dunedain deck.
  13. My guess is that they discovered a printing problem with Flight of the Stormcaller - maybe some of the cards got the wrong backs, or some of the cards were missing crucial text - and they worked with the printer to get the pack re-printed. In the meantime, given the delay of the first pack in the cycle, they've put a freeze on the rest of the cycle, including preview articles.
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