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Kjeld

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  1. I think the way to think about revising Power in the Earth is as an indirect form of increasing willpower (since there needs to be a location in the staging area for it to work). Generally speaking, 2 resources for 2 willpower is a good deal in a sphere like Leadership (which is why Celebrian's Stone is popular), but might not be as enticing in a sphere like Spirit where there's such easy access to cheap direct willpower through allies.
  2. For Northern Tracker, if it needs to be nerfed (which I'm not sure it does), then simply adding a cost to the ability might help. For example, change to "After Northern Tracker commits to the quest, any player may pay 1 <spirit> resource to..." Another option would be to change the trigger slightly: "After Northern Trackers quests successfully commits to the quest,..."
  3. According to this site, there should indeed be seven stars (representing the palantiri): Tolkien Gateway further notes, "Upon Arnor's fall and the failing of the line of the Kings of Gondor the crown was largely dropped from usage and not until the coming of Aragorn, and the raising of his banner at the Battle of Pelennor Fields, was the crown used again." And from the actual books: To me, it looks as though there is space on that shield for seven stars, but the 3rd and 6th (counting clockwise from left) are missing for some reason. The shield is also positioned oddly relative to the soldier's body (too far to the side), assuming he's holding it with his forearm strapped horizontally parallel to the back of the shield. That may account for some of the odd appearance as well.
  4. I was joking about the Entwives*, but I was serious that I think there's a good opportunity for FFG to create a female dwarf hero. Her backstory could be associated with one of the four Eastern dwarf clans that don't really make an appearance in the books. * As a player card, to be thematic, they'd probably have to leave the game as soon as they're played, and then discard all Ents in play, too!
  5. Or a female dwarf hero! It would also be amusing to get an Entwife ally/hero.
  6. Right, thanks for the correction! Nonetheless, given Smeagol's origins, I maintain my point 😉
  7. Remember that Frodo and Pippin are the heroes in the associated deluxe box. I believe that the designers consider the player cards in the Core + Deluxe + AP (since you can't play the AP quest without the Deluxe), so I'm not sure the case for a new hero Sam is quite this clean-cut. That said, I agree that it would be surprising not to see him at some point in this cycle.
  8. Most of my annoyance with errata would be erased if FFG simply made cheap POD update packs available so players could get the new physical version of the card. Then it wouldn't be necessary to remember which cards should be played with which text (or try to explain to new/casual players why the old version of the card isn't actually played the way it's printed anymore) -- you could simply just play the card as printed. Such packs would have to be cheap, however, because otherwise there would be a problematic monetary incentive to issue needless errata just to get players to buy the updates.
  9. Which is exactly why I think that issuing errata should be an action of last resort! Because the question should not be, "How would this card ideally work, knowing what we know now about LotR LCG?". As you point out, a logical and thematic rewrite of SoG -- which, incidentally, would also help curb abuse of Blood of Numenor and Gondorian Fire -- would massively change the way the game is currently being played. In other words, the issuance of errata cannot simply ignore the historical state of the game and work from an assumed "blank slate". However, many errata that have been issued, especially this new crop, seem to assume just that.
  10. I would think the most thematic and logical nerf to Steward of Gondor would be changing "Attach to a hero. Attached hero gains the Gondor trait." to "Attach to a Gondor hero."
  11. While I believe that most of these errata would make sense for new cards, in general I have not been a fan of FFG's aggressive use of errata to revise numerous existing, already printed cards for a non-competitive, co-op game. Too many errata makes playing and deck-building more complicated and for relatively little added value that I can see. Without competition, there's little reason for concern over OP cards, IMO. There are plenty of voluntary ways to make the game harder for those players that don't get enough challenge with the cards the way they are.
  12. I finally got a chance to play Journeys in Middle Earth last night at my FLGS, and I have to say that I was very impressed. Setup was quite quick for how many pieces are involved, which meant we got into the action right away. And the action was very tense and fast-paced! Also, while I was skeptical of having to use the accompanying app, it really worked seamlessly and added more than I thought to the thematic mood of the game (it has music and sound effects if you want them on). The app also dramatically streamlines a lot of the tedious bookkeeping that can sometimes bog down the card game, which lets players focus on the game rather than keeping track of a million separate effects and statuses. During our game, it felt the whole time that we were racing against the clock to complete the mission objectives, and there was real and constant tension between eliminating the enemies on the board and making progress toward the objectives. It definitely felt like we constantly had to make tough choices and determine how best to use our very limited resources. There were some epic moments of success -- like when Legolas one-shotted two ambushing Brigands who had Beravor pinned down, freeing her to secure the penultimate objective or when Bilbo slipped his dagger under an Orc Captain's armor for the kill to save Aragorn -- as well as failure, such as when Legolas finally succumbed to a pack of hungry Wargs just shy of reaching the final objective. I also really like the way that mission completion is handled. It's not a strict win/lose outcome, but rather there are gradations of success -- depending on how many objectives you complete -- that affect the next mission. Thus you don't generally waste an hour or two on a mission just to fail and have to run it over again before you can proceed to the next, AND choices you make in one mission have major effects on what happens in succeeding missions. So, all in all, a very good experience and it seems like you get a really good value for the $100 price tag. I would definitely recommend!
  13. I've always liked the Blocking Wargs (pre-errata) surging into a second Blocking Wargs on the first quest phase when playing Into Ithilien.
  14. I always assumed that the blades had entered into Goblin oral tradition, and descriptions of them were passed down through stories or songs. It's clear from Tolkien's writings that the Goblins of the Misty Mountains (and many other orc groups) had culture, and it stands to reason that therefore they would also have stories, too. Biter and Beater likely earned a legendary reputation as part of some Goblin epic tale from the First Age, much like we would hear about the Trojan Horse or Excalibur, perhaps. Keep in mind that cultures with oral traditions could keep very detailed memories alive, as well, so it's not that unlikely that if these swords had become part of the Goblin Legendarium that they would be recognizable from their descriptions. Especially with the tell-tale blue glow. It's also possible that the swords had been in the possession of the Goblins for some time before the trolls got hold of them, so they might have had more recent direct experience with them (like how Elrond kept the shards of Narsil in Rivendell on display for generations).
  15. Therein lies your answer. Rather than building synergy with more cards on the table, as do the heroes, the evil factions would squabble and fragment due to greed and internal power struggles. In game terms, the individual cards would generally be stronger, but would suffer negative bonuses with other cards on the table and would constantly be threatening to turn on you or each other if you can't keep them in line. Would be a really interesting way to explore trade-offs among traits and of risk/reward.
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