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Onidsen

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  1. I seem to have messed up my spoiler tags, and the edit function isn't getting them right. Here's the commentary that was supposed to be outside of the spoiler tag (for people who don't want to read through me analyzing every Dwarf ally in the game). So, from my perspective, the problem isn't that the Dwarf allies aren't worth it individually. Nor is it that their cost is sunk into stats like Hit Points that just aren't useful. The trait is a *little* biased towards defenders, but the big problem is that it's hard to ramp willpower. (Not that difficult for attack, unless you deliberately skip the Tactics sphere - Veteran Axehand, Erebor Battle-master, and Azain Silverbeard are all cost-effective attackers). The vast majority of the allies come in at the 3-cost mark. For almost all of them, each ally is worth the investment, but you can't build a deck with all 3-cost allies. You need some cheaper allies to work your board state up to the 3-cost ones. But for Dwarves, those 2-cost and 1-cost allies are mostly utility allies who aren't particularly stat-efficient. Zigil Miner and Blue Mountain Trader and Ered Nimrais Prospector...just don't cut it. (The Hammersmith does, but he is also the stereotypical focus-on-hit-points-too-much ally, and may actually be the source of the perception that the Dwarf allies have). And you can't cover that lack of willpower ramping with heroes, because the heroes don't have that much willpower either (except Thorin). The best you're going to get is 5 or 6 willpower on turn 1, and it's hard to find good 2-drops to boost that up. Once you can afford 3-drops, you are in business, but it's getting there that is the big problem. It's the same problem that Gondor has. Global boosts like Dain help fill in those gaps, but that makes you reliant on the global boost. Even with our tweaks, I don't know if this is enough to make Dwarf decks without Dain playable - we may need to alter some dwarf heroes to get extra willpower. (Oin maybe gaining +1 willpower and +1 attack when you control 5 dwarves?) On the other hand, resource engines like hero Gloin, Thorin, and our to-be-fixed We Are Not Idle might be enough to make those 3-drops easy enough to handle.
  2. While we certainly aren't going to get rid of global buffs (and changing Dain away from a global Dwarf buff would run up against our stated principles of trying to remain as close to the original card as we can), I can definitely understand where you're coming from here. One of our goals is to make a Dwarf deck without LdDain viable. To do that, we've got to boost the usefulness of at least some of the Dwarf allies (especially in the willpower department). That certainly is the common perception, although I'm not 100% sure that this is true. I've been going over Dwarf allies recently, and with the exception of a few stinkers, they really are decent. They just don't have a lot of willpower to offer. Here's the list of Dwarf allies:
  3. Count me as another one who is interested in the upcoming fate of the LOTR LCG. I'm excited for the upcoming cycle, but there are (as always, but more strongly than they have in previous iterations) rumors that the game is ending flying about. Can you reassure us that there is more content planned after the conclusion of this present cycle?
  4. Just beat the first scenario (plus or minus a missed rule). Whew, that was a ride. I liked it quite a bit. It reminds me a great deal of escape from umbar, in a good way.
  5. Thank you to everyone who has provided feedback! It is useful, and important for making this project as well-balanced as possible. I like this idea a lot - I've been wanting to do something more with Song of Mocking, but was worried about squeezing the space of Vigilant Guard. I think that the hit point boost on the Guard helps, though. You are absolutely right on both counts - you have to choose between three things (though readying helps), and he is still very powerful. I put together a test Dwarf deck to play Nightmare Raid on the Grey Havens using him, and was able to beat it. (No guarantees about being able to replicate that - that quest is ridiculous in solo, and I think I got a little lucky). Hmm...that would be interesting. I'd honestly rather give KET 1 WP and 1 attack instead of 2 attack, because an ally you could play for free to get 4 attack with Tom Cotton would be rather overpowered, I think. I like the parallel between that and the curious brandybuck, though. I'm torn between the encounter scrying version and having that parallel (though oddly enough, the Facebook group prefers the one that just adds a card to a player's hand). I'll have to think more on this one. Perfectly fair observation, and I really like the second idea you offered. Although I don't think I'd make other players pay resources to discard shadows - turning cards faceup and then having each player choose and discard one would not be overpowered, I think. Not for an event. Still not great in solo, but it suddenly becomes much more worth it even in 2 player. This is definitely true, although I really like having the symmetric number of damage or progress, and 4 damage would definitely be too much. I'm not particularly concerned about making both effects equally powerful - both will be useful at some points in a game, and you might choose the less powerful effect because it is most useful *right now.* That's a good point which I didn't think about - I'm excited to get to some of those Heirs of Numenor cards. The willpower boost might be too much (especially with Astonishing Speed), but an attack boost might definitely be in order - Rohan doesn't have a good general boost like that (although Charge of the Rohirrim works for heroes). For reference, here's what the Mirkwood Runner would look like with your proposed text: It's quite full, as you intuited (possibly too full?). Now, as to power. The problem with Mirkwood Runner is that it is so difficult to boost his attack. You can get 1 attack on the round it enters play from Celeborn, and there are some janky attachment combos you've mentioned already (and probably some you haven't). But none of them are consistent, and without consistency, it's a 2-attack attacker who has anti-incentives with other attackers. 4 attack, ignoring defense, is very powerful - enough to one-shot a large fraction of the enemies in the game (interestingly enough, it is the same fraction of enemies which can be eliminated by Gandalf's direct damage effect - from personal experience, that fraction grows to be not nearly enough somewhere around Heirs of Numenor). On the other hand, it requires a bit of setup - either a lucky draw with our new version of Mirlonde, or with Out of the Wild or Scout Ahead. Or it requires being able to defeat an enemy with the right trait and then playing None Return. (Or, in extremis, defeating an enemy with victory points, though that isn't reliable). I think that it will fall to playtesting to determine whether or not it's too much. (If you're interested, I can provide our working OCTGN files via PM). I like that last one - Exhaust a scout or ranger character to look at the top X cards, where X is the (printed) threat of the active location. Of course, that can get a little crazy in Nightmare, with locations like Gladden Marshlands. Or even in quests like Into the Pit, with its 7-threat starting location. On the other hand, there are only 14 non-unique locations with more than 4 threat in the non-nightmare game (I don't worry about unique locations, by their nature they aren't consistent.) But even 4 threat means rearranging the top 4 cards of the encounter deck - that's very powerful. It might be worth making it 1 cost for that effect. We talked about it, but our consensus was that it probably didn't need a boost - 2 cost to ensure that your next encounter card is a softball is almost like a cheaper Gildor's Counsel, and useful in solo as well. On the other hand, choosing any card in the encounter discard instead of just the top probably wouldn't be *too* powerful, I'm just not sure that the card as it currently exists needs it.
  6. Thank you! This was a rush job at the last minute, and I just copied wording from the original version. I'll fix that error at my earliest opportunity.
  7. Here's an alternate version of KET: I think I like this one better - it gives Leadership access to a little bit of encounter deck scrying, which pairs well with the Longbeard Elder from the next cycle.
  8. And while I'm at it, and have the time, I might as well post previews of the rest of the Shadows of Mirkwood cards for comment. 3 more packs, 16 more cards, one marathon of a post. First off, a few cards that we've made only very minor changes to, either to align better with earlier changes we made, or to deal with long-standing annoyances about the card. The first is Brand - a highly underrated hero, in my opinion. We just gave him the Warrior trait, and that was mostly because we had restricted Blade Mastery to the Warrior trait. The second is Support of the Eagles - we added the Eagle trait so that it can be drawn with The Eagles Are Coming. Watching and listening to old commentary about the game during this cycle, I have heard a number of complaints that this card couldn't be drawn. While we were in the cycle, then, we decided to address that. The third is Meneldor's Flight - as a 0-cost event, we just made it cantrip; our default approach to bad 0-cost events. Recent rules changes gave it a new lease on life, and the card draw is still conditional upon pulling an eagle back to your hand. Song of mocking is a bit niche, but we brought it in line with the Song of Earendil - with which it shares a number of thematic parallels. The fifth and sixth cards are just cost reductions. The Dunedain Cache suffered from Early Game Ranged Overcosted Syndrome (every ranged effect in the early game was overcosted - the designers overestimated just how valuable it was). And the Dunedain Watcher suffered from Early Game Overcosted Leadership Ally syndrome - she's a fine card, just a little too expensive to consistently use a discard effect. So, with that out of the way, there are 10 cards left that we made more in-depth changes to. We'll take them in sphere order: Dain Ironfoot was on our nerf list, for sure. Whenever anyone asks about overpowered cards, he pretty well tops the list of them. Our nerf is not heavily intrusive - it just forces you to choose between using the willpower boost or the attack boost each round. Readying can get around that, of course, but Unexpected Courage is limit one per hero, now, so you'll have to get creative. Keen-eyed Took is another one I'm just not satisfied with. We played with the idea of having him scry the encounter deck instead of the player's decks, and that might not be an awful idea, because I'm not sure if I like this one Dawn Take you All is a card that I keep forgetting exists. Leadership has had a lot of shadow mitigation for a long time, it's just been too expensive (Watcher) or not generally useful enough. The big problem with this card is that it requires each player to be engaged with an enemy to be useful. Allowing each player to discard a shadow card from any enemy removes that roadblock. Now you can ensure a shadow-free or mostly shadow-free round of combat for just 2 resources. Doesn't scale down well to solo play, but not every card needs to. Rear Guard is a card I've wanted to like for a long time. In a 4-player game, I feel like it might be able to pull its weight, but the style of deck for which it was designed doesn't fit very well with the current meta, honestly. We don't like our allies to leave play, these days - instead we want to keep them around and boost them up with attachments. Not a problem, it just makes cards like this harder to play. To help it out, we expanded the targets of the WP boost to all unique characters. Ditch a Snowbourne Scout or Squire of the Citadel for +4-6 wp or more? Definitely worthwhile. Descendent of Thorondor finally got a day in the sun again with the rise of Hirgon decks, and even later with Radagast. But he's still ridiculously expensive for his effect. Reducing his cost was a move towards seeing him in other dedicated Tactics decks, but we also broadened the list of targets he can damage to any enemy in play. This lets you kill off enemies engaged with players, which is a huge improvement. The Riddermark's Finest received a subtle but important change. We removed the requirement to exhaust it to trigger its ability, so you can actually use those stats now. 2 progress still isn't perhaps the best trade-off for discarding an ally, but I've used even the current ally to decent effect. This version lets me quest with it as well. Ride to Ruin received probably the biggest boost out of this set. This new version has its origins in the thematic disappointment of the original card. Taking the epic moment of the charge of the Rohirrim onto the Pelennor Fields and reducing it to 3 progress on a location is a little bit of a letdown. We allowed you to choose either 3 progress on the location or 3 damage on an enemy. It's a very powerful card now, but hopefully balanced by the fact that you have to discard an ally to make it work. So it's not really 1 cost for 3 damage, it's 1 cost and losing an ally for 3 damage. We Do Not Sleep is a classic example of a 5-cost event that is never worth the resources you'd spend on it. We wanted to broaden the use case a little, but we also recognized that it needed a cost reduction. Instead of actually changing the cost, we ended up reducing the cost by 1 for each Rohan hero you control. We also restricted the effect to heroes, but we also made it affect all heroes in play. So, for 2 resources, you get a turn in which you can use the heroes for questing and combat without using up any other readying effects they might have had. Mirkwood Runner is a card I'm excited for. Along with ally Haldir and Mirlonde, this card hopefully constitutes a new archetype for Silvans: secrecy/victory display. The Runner needed a boost - 2 attack ignoring defense is not great on its own, and being in the Lore sphere, it's hard to boost the attack. You can do a convoluted combo with Rivendell Bow followed by Bow of the Galadhrim, but that's hard to set up. So we gave it a situation where it can get extra attack, if you build for it. Our last card is Rumour from the Earth. I'm not totally satisfied with this card either - it's a repeatable scrying effect, which means that it competes with Henamarth Riversong. Our current appraoch is to dig deeper into the deck with our scrying, but I'm not 100% sure about how I feel about that. We'd appreciate any comments on these cards, and on whether or not we missed a card in our earlier playthroughs.
  9. @dalestephenson an updated Mirlonde that addresses the Silvan Secrecy problem.
  10. Finally, I can get back to the rest of the comments here. @Amicus Draconis, the lack of an 'E' in the title is, so far as I can tell, native to the card as printed (At least according to Hall of Beorn). Reproducing that error might be annoying, but I would rather not leave a situation where pedants can argue that they can include 6 copies of the card because it's not the exact same title between the original and the Ancient Mathom'ed version. @Yepesnopes @Freeman, our current objective is to change cards as little as possible. That said, at the end of the cycle, we are going to look back and see how the cards actually felt in playtests. If our current revisions aren't good enough, or if some of the cards we thought were fine actually need help, we'll reconsider them at that point. I really don't think that Horn of Gondor needs it, though. The card is sufficient as it currently stands, and making significant changes to the way it works would invalidate whole swathes of decks that use it. For a second time. I aim to steer well clear of that quagmire. Currently, actually, the cards on my list for needing an extra touch are Wandering Took (still probably going to be cut from most of my decks as soon as I have better ally options) and the Blade of Gondolin (needs to actually boost attack instead of just the conditional boost). If I were to rebuild the Horn of Gondor, I would do something as follows: Item. Artifact. Attach to a hero. Restricted. Response: After a character leaves play, exhaust Horn of Gondor to add one resource to the attached hero's resource pool. Action: Exhaust Horn of Gondor and raise your threat by 1 to give an enemy engaged with you -1 Attack until the end of the round.
  11. That's fair - I did my math wrong, counting the -6 threat from the already lowered cost with Mirlonde. The comparison with Glorfindel would be the big one, but the lower stats make her significantly less useful. (Smeagol is different enough, and has enough downsides that the comparison isn't simple).
  12. I'm seriously considering dropping Imrahil from the list - I don't think that he needs the help. Landroval is another card that probably doesn't need it - but I'm probably going to keep his changes just because it's been annoying that his original version can't save TaBoromir from using his discard ability. With the errata to Caldara, this makes all the heroes with discard effects a limit once per game, which means that I'm perfectly fine with letting Landroval work with them too. The final card that probably is fine without needing a touch is Haldir, but I'm going to hit Haldir just because he deserves some synergy with other Silvans. And I personally have come to prefer the secrecy one (but more on that below). That's a good point - making the card draw conditional prevents wholesale deck-thinning but also makes the card powerful enough to be included if the original effect is useful (On that note, my experience using the new and updated Strength of Will has been excellent, though Stand Together has been less impressive, possibly due to the fact that there just aren't as many good defenders in the card pool where our progression series is at yet, along with the fact that it's hard to stay under the engagement costs of enemies). And Parting Gifts is useful, just overshadowed by Good Harvest and Errand-rider. So, something like this, perhaps: I would say that if he's returned to play, he's no longer the same character that you exhausted to defend - the game doesn't recognize continuity like that, as far as I can tell. The response is similar to Landroval - if your hero was killed by a "deal damage to the defending character" shadow card, I think that the attack is still undefended, even if you use Landroval to bring the hero back. It's probably thematically weird as a planning phase cost reducer - although that's why I added the "or event" phrase in the updated (second) version. It also works in the Quest phase with Hirgon, or in the Combat Phase with Thranduil. Or if there's an event you want to use in the combat phase, it's a decent cost reducer for then. But the directly adding resources makes it more flexible, and I like that - but I do worry that it would conflict with the space of Elf Guide. (On the other hand, having different spheres might be enough to differentiate them). I really like the secrecy idea as well, and opening up a new way to play Silvans could be very interesting (I originally wanted Thranduil to open up an entirely new Silvan archetype - but I have become quite satisfied with him the way he is). I prefer the Secrecy Haldir for that reason, but your argument is quite compelling. I'd worry about an ability that would allow Mirlonde to reduce starting threat by 6, though (Mirlonde, Rossiel, Haldir or Argalad, for a starting threat of 16 - equal to a Hobbit deck with Folco). But the overall thrust of your point is well-taken. It would be good to be able to get a Silvan secrecy deck going (and one that doesn't use Spirit Glorfindel as a crutch). Perhaps dropping Mirlonde's defense and lowering her threat to 6 might be enough. Then, she's undercosted by 1 and also drops threat even further. This also gets you an all-Silvan deck starting at 20 (with Thranduil, even!), although it does lock you into using Rossiel. I don't want to pigeonhole Mirlonde too much. That's an interesting idea - Grant and I have been throwing out alternate ideas and haven't really found one we really like. This one is a pretty good one. Just today, though, I came up with this idea. The biggest problem with it is that it breaks almost every rule we have created for this series. Can't resist sharing the idea, although I have to admit that I think I like your idea better for the purposes of this project. (Please ignore the artwork on the new encounter card - I haven't found art for it yet. And needing to get permission for new art would be enough to make other options more attractive) Our original intent was to add the card draw in addition to the healing. The problem was that it ended up with waaay too much text for a single card. There's not really enough room to keep the healing and add another effect, as much as I would like to. Both of your ideas are excellent and thematic. The problem, I suppose, is that each of the 4 possible ideas for Radagast (healing, the creature search upon entering play, the readying a creature, or the return a creature from the discard pile) are all thematic and pretty good. Now we have to pick one. But better to have a surfeit of good ideas than none at all
  13. The key does not say to discard it if there are no Troll enemies in play, so if it is revealed from the encounter deck it should remain in the staging area.
  14. @HeavyKaragh Oops - I levelled up my search-fu and found the answer earlier in the thread.
  15. If you're really wanting to do a fleet like that, a raider with Corvus is provably a better bet. Redeploy after to get a safer location.
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