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  1. Like
    Authraw got a reaction from xchan in Progression Style - by Cycle vs by Pack   
    We did it cycle by cycle until we caught up. The cycle is designed all at once and then divided into packs, so I don't think there's much reason to do it pack by pack unless you feel you need the extra incentive of "earning" new cards for each successive win. 
  2. Like
    Authraw got a reaction from dragoncymru in Progression Style - by Cycle vs by Pack   
    We did it cycle by cycle until we caught up. The cycle is designed all at once and then divided into packs, so I don't think there's much reason to do it pack by pack unless you feel you need the extra incentive of "earning" new cards for each successive win. 
  3. Like
    Authraw reacted to Amicus Draconis in Newer cycles balanced for new players ?   
    There is a nice blog out there by @Authraw which answers the question, which cycles you can play with a core set only: https://darklingdoor.wordpress.com/path-less-traveled/
    For buying advice: Check ebay or the Lord of the Rings LCG Players facebook group, sometimes you will find other players who want to sell their collection.
  4. Like
    Authraw reacted to Onidsen in Different cards with the new reprint?   
    Yes.  Both needed and worth it.
    Because overpowered cards are unhealthy for the game, regardless of whether or not it is competitive. Just by existing, they warp the meta and restrict the design space.
    Errata to op cards relieves those restrictions. It makes it possible for the designers to build new cards in the space that got opened up. Burning brand made it so that almost no lore shadow management was ever possible again.  It also made it so that no powerful lore defender could ever be released, because the combo was too powerful. When used, it  often completely trivialized the entire combat phase.
    Now, there's room for other lore shadow management, and even room for a pretty good lore defender. The game is now better.
    Legacy of Durin allowed infinite card draw. By its very nature, unlimited effects are unbalanced and will eventually find themselves part of an infinite loop.
    I'm not saying that all the errata that's ever been done has been right, but I think errata for op cards is important, even in a coop game
  5. Like
    Authraw reacted to sappidus in Different cards with the new reprint?   
    I still think this sort of issue is more about Carn Dum itself rather than any errata. The community has generally been fine with saying "Skip Escape from Dol Guldur solo until you've got a lot more cards than the core"; maybe we should also go ahead and say "Skip Carn Dum unless you're ready for NM-level challenge. It's way up on the difficulty bell curve, no shame."
  6. Like
    Authraw reacted to Seastan in Different cards with the new reprint?   
    You have some good points here regarding Statement 1.
    From my understanding, the main counterargument is this kind of "guilt" you feel if you play a card that has been errata'd the original way. And I sympathize with this. By nerfing a card, the designers have deemed it too powerful, so by playing with the original text makes it seem like you are playing on easy mode.
    To be clear, I'm not trying to invalidate your feelings or anyone else's. You feel the way you feel. But maybe I can help by framing errata a bit differently.
    I would suggest rather to interpret errata this way: That the designers have deemed the card too powerful given the current state of the card pool, going forward. You should feel 0 guilt playing with original text against any of the previous 100 quests that have come out so far. Why? Because they let the card stand as is for all those years. If they made the past quests too easy, they would have errata'd it long before. By waiting until now to do it, they are effectively saying that the rest of the card pool is developed to the point where we have so many readying effects, with likely many more to come, that A Burning Brand can be too easily abused.
    Thousands of players have been playing the original text of A Burining Brand against the current collection of quests for years. The errata doesn't invalidate any of those wins any more than an errata in a competitive game invalidates the last year's tournament champion who happened to use the card. If players want to copy the old championship decklists in a competitive game and play them against each other, one could argue that they should in fact use the original text rather than the ettata'd text. Why not apply the same logic to old quests?
    Now yes, the cards are going to be reprinted with the updated text. They need to be, because the game is still alive, and future content is going to be balanced around the errata'd text. For a new player entering the game, picking up both old content and new, it would be a negative experience for them to complete some new content only to realize they were playing incorrectly because they did not have the updated text. I honestly think this would be a worse feeling for a new player than the slightly increased difficulty in not having the original Burning Brand when playing old scenarios.
    So I really feel that nobody should feel any guilt at all when playing old content with the original text.
    As for future content, you might say that your enjoyment of those scenarios will not be as high as it would have been, because you will feel guilty about playing with the original text. That's fair. I would feel guilty too. But keep in mind there would be nothing to prevent a designer from loading up every quest insert with a bunch of extra rules to counter all the overpowered decks. Errata is simply a lot cleaner way of ensuring that their new scenarios don't get immediately stomped. We saw this when the Boromir deck rose to power and the designers countered with new scenarios all having shadow effects that prevented the defender from readying (which ended up harming other archetypes even more). Then Boromir was ettata'd, and now hopefully we will start seeing these effects die out.
    Now, future content does not exist yet. So it's not possible for our enjoyment of it to go down from where it currently stands. This is where Statement 1 is coming from. If you won't find enjoyment from new content when playing either version of ABB, you are free to avoid purchasing it. The designers do not owe us new content that can be well handled by ABB. They don't owe us anything at all.
    Nevertheless, despite having these discussions every time a new FAQ is published, many of them containing plenty of errata that I myself wish was done differently, it's easy for me to say that the game is in the best state it's ever been, and my enjoyment continues to go up every year. Boromir was my favorite card in the game. But I'm now enjoying newer cards more than I ever did Boromir. It's a living card game. Let it live.
  7. Like
    Authraw reacted to sappidus in Different cards with the new reprint?   
    Even as a pro-errata guy, I sympathize with many of the points in your latest post. Errata do have a kind of psychic cost to them. (But I'd say that the contribution of errata to misbegotten wins is pretty minimal, compared to the hairball of rules that make up this game at this point, heh)
    I guess I subscribe to an auteur perspective on this game: I want to play the game that the designer intends, since Caleb, though imperfect like all of us humans, has almost always earned my trust in him. He shapes the game with every new release—essentially all of us (who are not playtesters) have no idea what ends up on the cutting room floor, after all. To me, errata are just another way in which he shapes it, albeit one that he prudently does not use often.
  8. Like
    Authraw reacted to Seastan in Different cards with the new reprint?   
    Statement 1: A player that dislikes an errata and plays without it suffers no harm to their enjoyment.
    Statement 2: A player that likes an errata and chooses to use it receives a benefit to their enjoyment.
    Support for Statement 1: This is a co-op game, and as such no one is forcing anyone to play a particular way.*
    Support for Statement 2: True by definition.
    By the above, I conclude that errata has at worst a neutral effect, and at best a positive effect. So bring on the errata. Can't have too much, I say. Concerns about having too much errata to keep track of can be handled with:
    Statement 3: A player that is unaware of an errata and plays without it suffers no harm to their enjoyment.
    *Outside of organized play.
  9. Like
    Authraw reacted to cfmcdonald in Different cards with the new reprint?   
    I really like the Taboo List alternative they've come up with for Arkham Horror. It's optional for those who want to shake things up, it doesn't invalidate any printed cards, and it allows a lot more experimentation (e.g. if they find they've over-nerfed they aren't stuck with that decision, and if they've under-nerfed they don't have to issue yet another errata, as with Erebor Battle Master).
  10. Like
    Authraw reacted to Seastan in Different cards with the new reprint?   
    Actually, I *do* have decks that heavily abuse A Burning Brand. They use Path of Need to make your defender not need to exhaust to defend, and then there is no longer any sense of being "bounded by your readying". You keep Path of Need up for a few rounds by not overquesting (scrying helps, but there are other tricks), while everyone builds up an unbeatable board state with 0 danger from enemies. I was able to beat Nightmare Escape from Dol Guldur using this trick.
    And before you cry foul on Path of Need, I agree. But I've also seen A Burning Brand on Beregond block every shadow effect on the table in a 4 player game with next to no effort. You don't need to have a endless readying to handle all the combat. Getting around 4 readies onto Beregond is easy, and is often all it takes, and there's no single culprit there. Targeting ABB is one way to bring that archetype more into balance.
  11. Like
    Authraw reacted to PocketWraith in Different cards with the new reprint?   
    This is not even close to true. I can no longer find a PDF of the original rulebook, but the Learn to Play is 32 pages and the Rules Reference is 29. The FAQ is 19, and of that, only two and a half pages are actually taken up by errata.
    1. Um, what? Staff of Lebethron was never a better choice than Burning Brand assuming either could be attached. With the errata it's a bit closer, but Burning Brand is still better (which is fair, it costs more).
    2. The fact the essential function and common case haven't changed directly contradict your claim that 'all of that is now obsolete'. Some of it may be obsolete, the decks that stacked a Burning Brand hero with readying effects to ignore all shadows forever are obsolete (but that was a broken case which needed to be fixed), and some decks now have one Restricted attachment too many (but many of those can be reasonably tweaked to manage without one of those attachments). Very little has actually been made obsolete.
    3. You say there was no broken combo which required errata, and then later go on to describe the case of stacking Burning Brand with readying effects and other defensive attachments - which is a broken combo that (imo) required errata.
    4. From my own perspective, I don't think nerfing Burning Brand makes the game meaningfully harder, because any quest in the game could be beaten pretty reliably without using it. It *was* (part of) one method of making the game a lot easier and, notably, less interesting by removing the aforementioned drama - the game is designed on the assumption that shadow effects are something the players will have to deal with to some extent, and Burning Brand on the right target made it too easy to just excise that entire aspect of the game.
    To my mind, this Burning Brand errata is actually the perfect kind of errata, in that it blocks the broken case while leaving the common case untouched, as you yourself noted. From my own personal perspective it also rehabilitates the card to the point where as mentioned, I'm now much more likely to play it myself.
    I mean, he was absolutely right, the Dunedain mechanics are very cool. His friend was clearly wrong.
    And if your implication here is that you can't play Dunedain and keep a bunch of enemies engaged without pre-errata Burning Brand, I can tell you from substantial experience that you are also clearly wrong.
  12. Like
    Authraw got a reaction from Schrodinger's Hat in New Amazon Show   
    I now have approximately four separate tangents I'm itching to go down; as I said, race in LotR is a deep subject.  But instead of muddying the waters here, I'll focus on clarifying my original assertion.
    Treating diversity as a moral that a story may or may not choose to center is still looking at the work through context 1--the context of the work by itself. In the context of any individual work, it may have some moral it's trying to pursue, or it may not. If Tolkien had wanted to write a story about "racial diversity", we would have gotten a completely different story. But that's not what he chose to write about--he wanted to tell a fantasy story based on European histories and legends. And that's great! When you look at the work on its own, there's really no problem here.
    A problem only arises when you pull back the focus and look at the stories we tend to tell (and retell) as a society. You begin to notice trends--like the fact that people of color rarely appear as protagonists, but when they do appear it's frequently as antagonists. (This trend has been slowly getting better, by the way, which I would argue is the result of creators being aware of and intentionally trying to counteract the trend... but of course that's a tangent). No one of these stories we tell may necessarily be problematic on its own, but when you look at all of them together they form an uncomfortable picture about how we as a society tend to interact with race.
    But this, of course, makes the problem difficult to talk about, because it means that any given work can be both part of a problematic system of thought and completely fine on its own.
    From this point, there are lots of places you can go with the conversation. What are the responsibilities of content creators relative to the larger social systems with which they interact? What are the responsibilities of consumers of media? I have my own perspectives on these sorts of questions but I think the answers to them are far from settled.
    Like I said, there's a lot to discuss here; I just want to make sure we're all having the same conversation.
  13. Like
    Authraw reacted to sionnach19 in Help with Pelennor Fields solo?   
    Thanks for the replies! I was able to make it through with Eowyn (tactics), Eomer (leadership), and Arwen. Tactically, I realized it was better to use Eowyn’s ability early on to kill the Wraith on Wings instead of saving it for the Witch-King fight. I also focused on gaming the second stage (the siege at Osgiliath) to give me more time to set up board state and buy Aragorn some time to show up. This took some doing — I needed an ally with a reasonable health pool, and favorable encounter card draws. Too many locations makes it easier to stall that stage, but led to me becoming location locked later on — I had to hit the right balance where I could clear locations and enemies as they appeared (it also helped that Gandalf was my discarded ally, which bought me plenty of time). Pushing through Stage 3 wasn’t too bad — Leadership Eomer’s ability helped thin out the Witch-King’s reinforcements, and Aragorn with Anduril was perfect for cutting down Orcs. One hitting Stage 5, I dropped two Mumakil and a Haradrim soldier — alongside the Witch-King, I was worried that I would get overwhelmed. Managed to cut down the Witch-King in two turns, and I ignored the Mumakil while using Banner of Elendil and Faramir to juice my questing capabilities. It was very close, but I’m happy to move onto the final expansion for the Saga!
  14. Haha
    Authraw reacted to Wandalf the Gizzard in Roster of characters   
    What do you mean he has no name? It says it right there! He's "Forgotten."
  15. Haha
    Authraw reacted to dalestephenson in What did you do with Lotr LCG today?   
    It's great to hear Caleb is a great guy.
    But what would be really spectacular is if he dropped hints about future heroes/cards/cycles.
  16. Like
    Authraw got a reaction from TheSpitfired in Replayability   
    I love Treachery in Rhudaur, Encounter at Amon Din, Breaking of the Fellowship, and Nightmare Into Ithilien. Wizard's Quest and Woodland Realm are both fun to replay, too, if you can get past the fact that they work a little better in competitive mode.
    Take heart! I have a blog series dedicated to doing exactly that in Nightmare mode; once your card pool is big enough this is no longer a pipe dream.
  17. Haha
    Authraw reacted to Wandalf the Gizzard in Journeys in Middle Earth board game announced!   
    My 100 dollars disagrees.
  18. Like
    Authraw reacted to Ywingscum in Favourite Ally?   
  19. Like
    Authraw reacted to dalestephenson in Solo League 7 -- Angmar Awakens (with LOTR saga cards)   
    Welcome to the LOTR Solo League. This month we'll be playing three quests from Lost Realm and the Angmar Awakens cycle. The quests are:
    1) Weather Hills (Deluxe)
    2) Escape from Mount Gram (AP2)
    3) Battle of Carn Dum (AP5)
    Here are the rules:
    1) Each player will construct a 50+ card deck, then use that exact deck against all three quests. You may use that deck freely against any quests (include the three quests in the league) prior to the run for testing purposes, but you may not use any trial runs for your official results.
    2) At least one of the heroes must be from a box with those quests -- this means you must have at least one of Tactics Aragorn, Halbarad, Rossiel, and Amarthiul.
    3) Your score against each quest will be how much help you need to defeat it, based on the Grace of the Valar variant invented by Seastan. It works like this:
    For each token you have, after you draw/mulligan your initial hand you can choose to draw a card or give a hero a resource. This happens one at a time, so if I use my first token to draw a card, I see the card before I decide whether to use my second token for a card or a resource.
    The original variant starts at zero tokens and gains two tokens if you lose quickly (first five turns) and one if you do not -- however, for the purposes of this league I will allow you to start a quest at any number of tokens, and adjust by as many as you want. The only rules for adding/reducing tokens are these:
    Rule 1) If you lose a quest with X tokens, you cannot play that quest again with X or less tokens.
    Rule 2) If you defeat a quest with Y tokens, you cannot play that quest again with Y or more tokens.
    So for example, if I start with six tokens against Carn Dum and defeat it, I can play it again with 0-5 tokens. If I then try with three tokens and lose, I can play it again with 4 or 5 tokens. If I try with four and lose, I can play it again with 5 tokens. If I win, my final score for that quest is 5, and if I lose my final score for the quest is 6. (Alternatively, I could've decided that 6 was a good enough score the first time I played it, and just have my final score be 6 without playing again.)
    Remember that tokens do not carry over between quests. When playing Escape from Mount Gram it does not matter how many tokens I needed to defeat Weather Hills.
    4) You are not required to publish your deck, but providing a ringsdb link is encouraged (otherwise I may need to ask you for your decklist at the end of the month if required for a tiebreaker). You are required to reveal which Heroes you used, and how many cards in your deck came from outside LR/Angmar cycle, LOTR saga and a single core. Do not include outside heroes in this count, only cards in the deck itself.
    5) Tiebreakers have frequently mattered, though we haven't had a zero-token winner in the last three months. Here are the tiebreakers, in order:
    1st) The number of outside cards (i.e. not from LOTR saga, LR/Angmar or a single core) used in the deck. Do not count outside heroes in this count, only cards in the deck. Less cards is better.
    2nd) The number of heroes specifically from LOTR saga and LR/Angmar. More is better.
    3rd) The number of heroes used from this list: TaAragorn, Halbarad, Rossiel, Amarthiul. More is better.
    4th) The number of cards in the deck outside LOTR saga and LR/Angmar. Less is better, and core cards are considered "outside" for this tiebreaker.
    5th) The number of cards outside Lost Realm, Escape from Mount Gram, and Battle of Carn Dum. Less is better, and core cards are considered "outside" for this tiebreaker.
    6th) Performance in February's Solo League (if you didn't play or finish February's League, a median performance will be assumed). Whoever did worst wins this tiebreaker.
    6) 1st place gets to choose the cycle for May's league, 2nd place gets to choose a quest from that cycle, and 3rd place gets to choose a quest *not* to be used from that cycle. In an effort to expand the diversity of decks used, the last place player will choose an additional cycle that may be used for deckbuilding in April's league. April's league will be in LOTR saga, quests still to be determined.
    7) Weekly deadlines will be on Monday at 11pm Eastern. Only the final deadline really matters for scoring -- the first two deadlines are only to be included in intermediate standings.
    Weather Hills: March 11th
    Escape from Mount Gram: March 18th
    Battle of Carn Dum: March 25th
    8 ) I've created a google spreadsheet for results here:
    To join the league, merely add your name and information about your deck to the spreadsheet, then enter your results as you have them. Please give a link to your deck if you built or published it on ringsdb, but it is not required.
    If you wish you may run additional decks against the quests and record your results (I hope to do this), but only the first entry will be considered for the competition itself.
  20. Like
    Authraw reacted to dalestephenson in Roster of characters   
    Thanks for the correction.  Interestingly, Derufin has the Gondor trait, but not the Outlands trait.
    I think the best way to handle Outlands uniques would be to give them modest stats, but useful abilities that require exhaustion.  This would give you choices on how to use them in an Outlands deck, but make them usable outside those decks.
  21. Like
    Authraw reacted to TheSpitfired in What did you do with Lotr LCG today?   
    My FLGS finally got Celebrimbor’s secret in! This means that Eoywn leaves my elf deck and it gets tuned as Galadriel takes her rightful place with Elrond and (sp) Glorfindel. 
    It slows the deck down a bit but really brings out the theme, so we will see how it works out!
    EDIT: Sorry to add more, but I am actually really excited for my playing of this game right now. This week with the restock I bought a bunch of things that I didn't have. Did not get everything I hoped to but I know the aforementioned Elves will get a healthy bolster. The possibilities for deck creation are looking great!
  22. Like
    Authraw reacted to TwiceBorn in What did you do with Lotr LCG today?   
    As I had doubts about the "legitimacy" of my late 2018 progression mode victories over Battle of Carn Dum due to what I perceived to be some ambiguous rules situations, I decided to continue playing the quest in standard mode with the most recently available errata in effect, both straight solo and 2-handed, until I was satisfied that I had truly beaten the quest. 
    What a time consuming endeavour (mistake?) that was... but the 4-month, 207 game marathon came to an end in the wee hours of this morning.
    In that time, I managed a whopping 6 victories (lol)... you may snicker at my poor deck-building, strategic play, or sheer awful luck... and marvel at the sheer insanity of playing similar poorly performing decks over such a long period of time, and expecting better results of them! 
    My two-handed decks featured Faramir (Lo)/Aragorn (Lo)/Frodo Baggins, and Glorfindel (Sp)/Erestor/Elrond.
    For solo, I started out with  Bilbo Baggins/Erestor/Mirlonde (variation on a deck by Seastan), but eventually came to the conclusion that Faramir/Erestor/Glorfindel worked better and was more enjoyable... even though the overall win ratio remained dismal.
    I was glad to have been able to make good use of cards that I had never found much use for in the past, such as Miruvor (Erestor really enables you to make the most of that one) and hero Faramir (Lo). 
    Must admit that I'm happy that my OCD is finally allowing me to move on. I really hope The Dread Realm won't be nearly as painful...
  23. Like
    Authraw reacted to dalestephenson in Set Sail?   
    Aside from the Noldor decks, Na'asiyah would be your only hero with nautical experience.
  24. Like
    Authraw reacted to stimpaksam in When to start playing Nightmare quests?   
    Ian did an awesome job reviewing the Nightmare scenarios over on his blog.
  25. Like
    Authraw reacted to Wandalf the Gizzard in Mount Gundabad   
    Sometimes the process and repercussion of errata are more trouble than having a few less playable cards. Yes those cards are less powerful, but that has no effect on the game's overall health. I think the developers might want to limit the amount of errata given since players then have cards that say and actually do different things. Just my two cents as to why we haven't gotten positive player card errata.
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