Turn by Turn Report – Trouble in Tharbad

spyfrommordor.jpg

I’ve always wanted to do turn by turn reports playing two handed and so here is my first attempt at this. I am playing with the following decks:
http://ringsdb.com/f…wship/view/1251
The quest I am playing today is Trouble in Tharbad. A relatively easy but quite fun quest with interesting mechanics.

Setup and Opening Hands

So first off is The Three Hunters. Cards we want to see in an opening hand are generally Steward, Shield and Unlikely Friendship. Captains Wisdom can replace Unlikely Friendship (to allow first turn Steward) and allies like Galadriel and Gandalf are also nice as they give a large albeit temporary boost to questing or combat and can also provide card draw (Gandalf) or free attachments and ordering the top cards of your deck (Galadriel) which is a nice boost at the start of the game. Armoured Destrier, Elven Mail and a weapon are all nice cards to see in an opening hand as well. For The Last Elven Host the most ideal cards in an opening hand are definitely Vilya and Stargazer allowing you to get that extremely potent combo going early. It’s also nice to see a Caregiver and/or Elven Light to give you a way to discard down to no cards and draw back up to 6 fairly early on with Galdor. LoV for Elrond is nice to see early on as are copies of Test of Will.  Silver Harp, UC, Glorfindel and a few other cards are all nice to see in a starting hand as well.

For this particular quest I will need lots of willpower so that I can quest hard and get my threat to 0 for the special quest stage effect and mechanics. Threat reduction cards are not quite so important because I can simply lower threat by placing progress and can speed through the last quest stage before threat gets too high again. I will need to see some nice cards to get combat under control as there are some nasty enemies you want to get rid of quickly in this Quest especially the spies that remove time counters. Tactigorn will be key to destroying them as he can pull them down from staging with his ability giving me the opportunity to destroy them before they get to attack.

The initial opening hand I draw for The Three Hunters is: Unlikely Friendship, Gandalf, Gondorian Shield, Rivendell Blade, Fornost Bowman and Sterner than Steel. I am actually quite happy with this hand in light of no Steward so I keep this hand.

The initial opening hand I draw for The Last Elven Host is: Elven Light, 2x Galadhrim Healer, 2x Elronds Counsel and Northern Tracker. Not the best starting hand so I mulligan in hopes for Vilya and/or Stargazer or some other nicer cards.
I draw Galadhrim’s Greeting, Elven-Light, A Test of Will, Light of Valinor, Vilya and Galadriel’s Handmaiden. A great starting hand! Time to begin!

For quest setup I put Two Spies from Mordor (one per player) into staging, make The Empty Mug the active location and flip Stage 1A to Stage 1B. Finally I put Nalir in play under the control of the first player. Time for the first resource and planning phase!

Round 1: Stage 1B (- of – progress)

Resource Phase
Each deck draws a card and places starting resources. The Three Hunters Draws Steward of Gondor which honestly could not have worked out better and The Last Elven Host draws Glorfindel which is decent.

The Three Hunters
32 threat (First Player)
Hand: Unlikely Friendship, Gandalf, Gondorian Shield, Rivendell Blade, Fornost Bowman, Steward of Gondor and Sterner than Steel.

— Aragorn: 1 resource, 0 damage
— Gimli: 1 resource, 0 damage
— Legolas: 1 resource, 0 damage

Allies:

-Nalir (objective ally)

Engaged With:

-nothing

Discard Pile:
Empty

The Last Elven Host
31 threat (Second Player)
Hand: Galadhrim’s Greeting, Elven-Light, A Test of Will, Light of Valinor, Vilya, Glorfindel and Galadriel’s Handmaiden.

— Elrond: 1 resource, 0 damage
— Arwen: 1 resource, 0 damage
— Galdor: 1 resource, 0 damage

Allies:

-none

Engaged With:

-nothing

Discard Pile:
Empty

Staging Area/Active Location

2x Spy from Mordor (4 Threat) Active Location is The Empty Mug. 4 Time Counters on Stage 1B.

Planning Phase

Drawing Steward of Gondor during the first resource phase was fantastic and has setup the opening play for The Three Hunters. I play Unlikely Friendship and place a resource on Gimli and draw Faramir! I then play Steward of Gondor with Gimli’s two resources and exhaust it immediately to place 2 resources back on Gimli. I play Gondorian Shield on Gimli for one tactics resource and use the other to play Rivendell Blade on Legolas. The Last Elven Host discards Elven Light to place a resource on Elrond via Arwen’s effect. Arwen and Galdor’s resources are used to play Vilya on Elrond. I then play LoV for one of Elrond’s resources and place that on him as well. So long as I don’t need to defend with him in a pinch I can now use Vilya after questing with him. Even though I don’t have a stargazer in my hand I hope that I hit some nice cards with Vilya until I see a stargazer to set Vilya up properly.

Staging and Quest Resolution

The Three Hunters commits Aragorn to the quest (I hope to ready him later in the turn with Gimli) and The Last Elven Host commits Elrond, Arwen and Galdor. This is a total of 10 willpower. During Staging I reveal Orc Hunting Party which deals a shadow card to each Spy from Mordor (and reduces the engagement of all Orcs by 15 until the end of the round) and does not gain surge and then a copy of Bellachs Maurader. This is a fairly awful first turn for this quest as all three orcs will now engage and I will lose many time counters because of this. I also have to face 3 nasty enemy attacks! Time to strategize! So first off before anything else Quest resolution places 3 progress tokens on The Empty Mug. It is ideal to clear this location first turn but oh well.

Travel

There are no locations in the staging area to travel to and The Empty Mug is still the active location. Before progressing to the encounter phase I exhaust Vilya and Elrond and hope that I get something fantastic to help with the three enemies I will have to face this turn and with an incredible amount of luck I reveal and play at no cost Gildor!

Encounter

I optionally engage Bellachs Maurader with the combat deck (The Three Hunters) and one Spy from Mordor engages each deck.

Combat

Gimli defends against Bellachs Maurader and pays 1 resource to ready Aragorn. The shadow card for Bellachs Maurader has no effect (Ruins of the Second age) and Gimli suffers 1 point of damage. Nalir defends against a Spy from Mordor and the revealed shadow cards give it +1 attack and remove a time counter (this is starting to look somewhat grim..). Nalir takes 2 damage and will not be used to defend again this game! Gildor defends against the final Spy from Mordor and the revealed shadow cards give it +1 attack and raise the defending decks threat by each point of damage dealt. Gildor takes 1 damage and I raise The Last Elven Hosts threat by 1. Need to get a healer out asap!

Bellachs Maurader has been dealt six shadow cards due to the three time counters being removed (2 from the Spy’s attacking and 1 from a shadow effect) so it is time to take this nasty foe out! Luckily with Rivendell Blade and Aragorn’s -1 defense to engaged enemies the Maurader only has 1 point of defense and 5 hitpoints when I attack with Aragorn and Legolas and is destroyed! I use Aragorn’s ability to engage the Spy of Mordor engaged with The Last Elven Host and Legolas places 2 progress. 1 on The Empty Mug clearing it and 1 on the current quest stage which instead reduces each decks threat by 1.

The-Empty-Mug.jpg
Now that The Empty Mug is explored and in the victory display; player cards that reduce threat are removed from the game instantly. This means I will not be using Gandalf to lower threat as it would instantly discard him. I will also not be able to get cards like Greeting or Counsel back from my discard with Dwarven Tomb.

Refresh

All characters are unexhausted. Nalir raises threat of The Three Hunters by 2. Each deck raises threat by 1. No player actions are taken. 1 time counter is removed from quest Stage 1B. Each decks Threat Elimination Level is reduced to 40 and I place four new time counters on Stage 1B. Time to move fast!

Round 2: Stage 1B (- of – progress)

Resource Phase
Each deck draws a card and places a resource on each hero. The Three Hunters Draws Sneak Attack and my ridiculous luck continues and The Last Elven Host draws a copy of LoV which will be discard fodder.

The Three Hunters
34 threat (Second Player)
Hand: Sneak Attack, Gandalf, Fornost Bowman, Faramir and Sterner than Steel.

— Aragorn: 1 resource, 0 damage
— Gimli: 2 resources, 1 damage. Steward of Gondor, Gondorian Shield attached
— Legolas: 1 resource, 0 damage. Rivendell Blade attached

 Allies:

-None

Engaged With:

-2x Spy from Mordor

Discard Pile:
Unlikely Friendship

The Last Elven Host
32 threat (First Player)
Hand: Galadhrim’s Greeting, A Test of Will, Light of Valinor, Glorfindel and Galadriel’s Handmaiden.

— Elrond: 2 resources, 0 damage. Vilya and Light of Valinor attached
— Arwen: 1 resource, 0 damage
— Galdor: 1 resource, 0 damage

Allies:

-Nalir (objective ally, 2 damage)

-Gildor Inglorion (1 damage)

Engaged With:

-nothing

Discard Pile:
Elven Light

Staging Area/Active Location

Staging area Empty

No active location.

4 Time Counters on Stage 1B.

Planning Phase

The Last Elven Host discards Glorfindel to place a resource on Aragorn via Arwen’s ability. I then play Galadriel’s Handmaiden for one of Elronds resources and Arwen’s resource.

The Three Hunters plays Fornost Bowman for three tactics resources.

Staging and Quest Resolution

Time for a Sneak Attack Gandalf! I play Sneak Attack to place Gandalf in play and deal 4 damage to one of the engaged Spies destroying it as it has exactly four hitpoints. The Last Elven Host commits Elrond, Arwen, Galdor, Galadriel’s Handmaiden and Gildor and The Three Hunters commits Gandalf for a total of 17 willpower. I also have test of will and a resource remaining on Elrond (with Vilya for spirit icon) to cancel anything nasty. I should be able to do well very well this round and should be able to get into the drivers seat and neuter the encounter deck after this if all goes well. During staging I reveal Cornered (which I specifically do not cancel with Test of Will as only one enemy can now be revealed which I should easily be able to take on with the combat deck) and Orc Skirmisher. Quest resolution places 14 progress tokens which reduces each decks threat by 14 points.

Travel

There is no option or need to travel so all I do is exhaust Elrond and Vilya and play Galadrim Healer for free. This heals the one damage off Gimli but would have been a far better card to see after engaging the Orc Skirmisher…

Encounter

Cornered reduces the engagement of the Orc Skirmisher to 13 so I just engage it optionally with the combat deck and deal three damage to Legolas.

Combat

Things are a little hairy at the moment and I am thinking that perhaps I should have used Test of Will against Cornered ( I could have avoided the Skirmisher’s attack and engaged it with Aragorn instead). Both enemies now have +1 attack thanks to cornered so this combat phase is a little more nerve racking than I had hoped it would be.

Aragorn defends against the Spy from Mordor and the shadow card has no effect (I also remove a time counter). Aragorn takes 2 damage. Gimli defends against the Orc Skirmisher and pays one resource to ready Aragorn for combat, the shadow card has no effect and Gimli takes 1 damage. Thank goodness for no shadow effects this round!

The counter attack is fierce and the Fornost Bowman and Aragorn take out the Spy from Mordor and Legolas  deals 3 damage to the Orc Skirmisher (not desperate for his progress ability right now but really needed to take out the Spy and wanted to deal as much damage as possible to the Skirmisher at the same time hence my choices).

Cornered.jpg
Cornered ends up being worse than I thought and results in plenty of damage being placed on The Three Hunters

Refresh

All characters are unexhausted. Nalir raises the threat of The Last Elven Host by 2. Each deck raises threat by 1.  1 time counter is removed from Stage 1B and it now has 2 time counters remaining (hopefully enough time to clear this stage and move on to stage 2!).

Round 3: Stage 1B (- of – progress)

Resource Phase

Each deck draws a card and places a resource on each hero. The Three Hunters Draws and Feint The Last Elven Host draws Vilya.

The Three Hunters
21 threat (First Player)
Hand:  Gandalf, Sterner than Steel, Faramir and Feint.

— Aragorn: 1 resource, 2 damage
— Gimli: 5 resources, 1 damage. Steward of Gondor, Gondorian Shield attached
— Legolas: 1 resource, 3 damage. Rivendell Blade attached

Allies:
-Nalir (objective ally, 2 damage)

-Fornost Bowman

Engaged With:

-Orc Skirmisher (3 damage)

Discard Pile:
Unlikely Friendship, Sneak Attack

The Last Elven Host
21 threat (Second Player)
Hand: Galadhrim’s Greeting, A Test of Will, Light of Valinor and Vilya.

— Elrond: 2 resources, 0 damage. Vilya and Light of Valinor attached
— Arwen: 1 resource, 0 damage
— Galdor: 2 resources, 0 damage

Allies:

-Nalir (objective ally, 2 damage)

-Galadriel’s Handmaiden

-Galadrim Healer

-Gildor Inglorion (1 damage)

Engaged With:

-nothing

Discard Pile:
Elven Light, Glorfindel

Staging Area/Active Location

Staging area Empty

No active location.

2 Time Counters on Stage 1B.

Planning Phase

The Three Hunters plays Faramir for 4 leadership resources and I now have both Feint and Sterner than Steel handy for combat. I plan to use Gandalf next turn for some card draw and another quest/combat boost.

The Last Elven Host discards LoV to place a resource on Elrond via Arwen’s ability. I then play Galadhrims Greeting (and remove it from the game due to The Empty Mug) to reduce each players threat by 2.

Staging and Quest Resolution

The Three Hunters commits nobody but exhausts Faramir to add +1 willpower to each character belonging to The Last Elven Host which commits Galadrim Healer, Galadriel’s Handmaiden, Elrond, Arwen, Galdor and Gildor for a total of 20 willpower.

I reveal Orc Skirmisher and Hidden Alleyway placing 14 progress on Stage 1B which instead reduces each decks threat by 14 placing both decks on 5 threat! Next turn I should easily get to 0 threat for both decks and advance to Stage 2 which is fantastic news! The bad news is there is still no treachery in sight to cancel with test of will which I am now really needing to do so I can get to zero cards and draw back up to six with Gildor. I really need a Caregiver so I can heal damage across the board.

a-test-of-will
Who’d have thought there would ever be a time I was unhappy to have A Test of Will in my hand!

Travel

I travel to Hidden Alleyway raising each players threat by 2 (the amount of enemies in play) to do so. This places a time counter on Stage 1B bringing it up to 3 time counters which means I don’t have to take 3 damage from the Orc Skirmisher now!

I exhaust Elrond and Vilya to play Gather Information for free. This is a bit of a dud as I may not have time to explore this side quest and reap the benefits. Still even without Stargazer I have had fairly decent luck thus far.

Engagement

The Three Hunters optionally engages the Orc Skirmisher removing 1 time counter from the current quest.

Combat

I use feint to stop one Orc Skirmisher from attacking. Gimli defends the other and the shadow card gives +2 attack which I cancel with Sterner than Steel stopping any damage from being dealt.

I counter attack with my Fornost Bowman and Aragorn to destroy one Orc Skirmisher and then Legolas finishes off the one he wounded last turn and places 2 progress on Hidden Alleyway (5 total progress needed to clear).

Refresh

All characters are unexhausted. Nalir raises the threat of The Three Hunters by 2. Each deck raises threat by 1.  1 time counter is removed from Stage 1B and it now has 1 time counters remaining.

Round 4: Stage 1B (- of – progress)

Resource Phase

Each deck draws a card and places a resource on each hero. The Three Hunters Draws Rivendell Blade and The Last Elven Host draws Imladris Stargazer. Fantastic! Time to set up Vilya+Stargazer and get some healing plus whatever else out for free (as well as choose what I draw from the top five cards for the rest of the game).

The Three Hunters
10 threat (Second Player)
Hand:  Gandalf and Rivendell Blade.

— Aragorn: 1 resource, 2 damage
— Gimli: 4 resources, 1 damage. Steward of Gondor, Gondorian Shield attached
— Legolas: 2 resource, 3 damage. Rivendell Blade attached

Allies:

-Fornost Bowman

-Faramir

Engaged With:

-nothing

Discard Pile:
Unlikely Friendship, Sneak Attack, Sterner than Steel, Feint

The Last Elven Host
8 threat (Second Player)
Hand: Imladris Stargazer, A Test of Will and Vilya.

— Elrond: 2 resources, 0 damage. Vilya and Light of Valinor attached
— Arwen: 1 resource, 0 damage
— Galdor: 3 resources, 0 damage

Allies:

-Nalir (objective ally, 2 damage)

-Galadriel’s Handmaiden

-Galadrim Healer

-Gildor Inglorion (1 damage)

Engaged With:

-nothing

Discard Pile:
Elven Light, Glorfindel, LoV

Staging Area/Active Location

Staging area Empty except for Gather Information.

Hidden Alleyway (with 2 of 5 progress needed) is the active location.

1 Time Counter on Stage 1b.

Planning Phase

The Last Elven Host plays Imladris Stargazer for two resources (1 from Arwen 1 from Elrond) and Vilya is then discarded to place a resource on Elrond via Arwen’s ability.  I then exhaust Stargazer to look at the top five cards of The Last Elven Host’s deck and reveal: Wingfoot, Dwarven Tomb, Lindir, Cloak of Lorien and Imladris Caregiver (bingo!). Here is where a very nice combo can be played with Lindir+Vilya! I put the cards back in the following order top to bottom: Lindir, Caregiver, Wingfoot, Cloak, Tomb. I then exhaust Elrond and Vilya to play Lindir for free. His ability kicks in and because I only have Test of Will in my hand I draw two cards and get to draw Wingfoot and Caregiver. I play the Caregiver with two of the three resources on Galdor that have stockpiled up.

I then use one of the two resources remaining on Elrond to return Elven Light back to my hand from my discard and draw a card (Cloak of Lorien). I then play Cloak for the last resource on Galdor attached to Elrond. I then discard Elven Light and Wingfoot to heal 1 damage off Gimli and 2 off Legolas by using the Caregiver’s ability twice.

The Three Hunters plays Gandalf for 5 (1 resource from Legolas and Aragorn each and 3 from Gimli) and draws 3 cards from his effect drawing Dunedain Warning, Guardian of Arnor and Eldarhir. Some more decent allies that will help with Stage 2 if they hit the board!

Staging and Quest Resolution

The Last Elven Host commits Arwen, Galdor, Gildor, Galadrim Healer, Galadriel’s Handmaiden, Caregiver and Lindir. The Three Hunters commits Aragorn and exhausts Faramir to boost The Last Elven Hosts characters. This generates a total of 23 willpower.

I reveal Decrepit Rooftops and Streets of Tharbad during staging. Quest resolution places a total of  8 progress 3 of which are places on Hidden Alleyway clearing it and 15 of which are placed on Stage 1B reducing both players threat to 0. I instantly advance to stage 2!

I add Bellach and The Crossing at Tharbad to the staging area. I shuffle the encounter discard pile into the encounter deck and discard cards until 2 orc enemies are discarded and add them to the staging area. This adds Spy from Mordor and Orc Hunter to the staging area.

tharbad
The Pons Aemilius is the oldest Roman Stone Bridge and in my opinion is the closest real world equivalent to the ruined Bridge of Tharbad. Both once crossed mighty rivers but were destroyed due to severe flooding and left to crumble after the mighty Empires that built them fell into ruin themselves.

Travel

I travel to decrepit rooftops (and don’t have to return any engaged enemies to staging as I have none) which essentially completely counters Bellach’s ability. He reduces enemies engagement level but because the rooftops stop enemies from making engagement checks altogether I don’t have to engage any enemies. Except that I definitely will!

Engagement

The Three Hunters optionally engages Orc Hunter.

Combat

Time to pull off some nice combat tricks! I defend against the Orc Hunter with Gimli and use his last resource to ready Aragorn.  The shadow card gives the Hunter +2 attack which deals 1 damage to Gimli. Aragorn alone destroys the Hunter (-1 defence from his ability) and his ability allows me to engage Bellach who is not immune to player card effects! I then attack him with Legolas, the Fornost Bowman and Gandalf for a total of 9 attack against his 1 defence (-1 from Aragorn and -2 from Rivendell Blade) and 7 health and slay him instantly! Legolas places 2 progress on Decrepit Rooftops. Only the Spy from Mordor remains and I should be able to quest past him within a turn or two anyway.

Refresh

All characters are unexhausted. Nalir raises the threat of The Last Elven Host by 2. Each deck raises threat by 1.  1 time counter is removed from Stage 2B and it now has 2 time counters remaining.

Round 5: Stage 2B (- of – progress)

Resource Phase

Each deck draws a card and places a resource on each hero. The Three Hunters Draws Gandalf and The Last Elven Host Draws Dwarven Tomb.

The Three Hunters
11 threat (Second Player)
Hand:  Gandalf, Eldahir, Guardian of Arnor and Dunedain Warning.

— Aragorn: 1 resource, 2 Damage
— Gimli: 3 resources, 0 Damage. Steward of Gondor, Gondorian Shield attached
— Legolas: 2 resource, 1 damage. Rivendell Blade attached

Allies:

-Nalir (objective ally, 2 damage)

-Fornost Bowman

-Faramir

Engaged With:

-nothing

Discard Pile:
Unlikely Friendship, Sneak Attack, Sterner than Steel, Feint, Gandalf

The Last Elven Host
11 threat (Second Player)
Hand: Dwarven Tomb and Test of Will.

— Elrond: 2 resources, 0 damage. Vilya, Cloak of Lorien and Light of Valinor attached
— Arwen: 1 resource, 0 damage
— Galdor: 1 resources, 0 damage

Allies:

-Nalir (objective ally, 2 damage)

-Galadriel’s Handmaiden

-Galadrim Healer

-Gildor Inglorion (1 damage)

-Lindir

-Imladris Caregiver

-Imladris Stargazer

Engaged With:

-nothing

Discard Pile:
Elven Light, Glorfindel, LoV, Vilya, Wingfoot

Staging Area/Active Location

Staging area has 1x Spy from Mordor, 1x Streets of Tharbad, 1x The Crossing at Tharbad and Gather Information. Decrepit Rooftops (with 2 of 3 progress needed) is the active location. 2 Time Counters on Stage 2b.

Planning Phase

The Three Hunters plays Gandalf yet again and does 4 damage to the Spy from Mordor in staging destroying it. All resources are spent to do so except 1 on Gimli.

The Last Elven Host returns Elven Light to hand with Arwen’s resource and draws Miruvor. I discard Elven Light to heal 2 damage off Aragorn. I then play Miruvor on Gimli for one of Elronds resources (leaving one for test of will). I look at the top five cards of The Last Elven Hosts deck and reveal: Vilya, Elven Light, A Test of Will, Cloak of Lorien and Northern Tracker. I put them back in the following order top to bottom: Northern Tracker,  Test of Will, Cloak, Elven Light, Vilya. Playing the Northern Tracker for free will be nice as will drawing Test of Will next turn. Honestly I may win this turn so may not have really needed to do this but hey you never know I may face some last minute setbacks so it is better to be prepared!

Staging and Quest Resolution

Time for a massive push! The Three Hunters commits Aragorn and Gandalf and The Last Elven Host commits Elrond (after committing Elrond but before committing the next character I use Vilya’s action to exhaust Elrond and Vilya and play Northern Tracker for free), Arwen, Galdor, Gildor, Galadriel’s Handmaiden,  Lindir, Galadhrim Healer, Caregiver and Northern Tracker. Faramir is used to boost all the characters from The Last Elven Host and the total willpower generated is a very nice 33.

During staging I reveal Hidden Alleyway and Seedy Inn. The total threat in staging is 11. This means I place 22 progress points. Decrepit Rooftops take one more progress and are explored and I place 21 progress on Stage 2B which is instead placed on The Crossing at Tharbad and I quest to victory!!!

22 Total Threat. 1 Damage on heroes at the end and won on the Fifth Round (so +40 to score). 4 Victory Points thanks to The Empty Mug. Final Score of: 59!

Conclusion:

Now this was not only a really easy quest but The Three Hunters deck definitely didn’t hit its stride or perform at full capacity. The Last Elven Host started to really get going and only would have gotten much stronger much more quickly if the game had continued. Many key attachments and cards did not see play but the decks still performed pretty **** well with what cards did see play.  I did not have great defense set up at all as I did not draw Armoured Destrier, Elven Mail (so Elrond can defend across the board and still use Vilya thanks to Gimli readying him) or Guardian of Arnor/Eldarhir (until late game at least) or even a Guardian of Rivendell with The Last Elven Host. This meant cards and abilities like feint, Gimli and Aragorn were key to beating this quest in this particular playthrough. There was an extremely lucky moment early on where I got Gildor into play for free and he then defended a critical attack. Had I not gotten him into play at that point I would have had to defend with Elrond (readying him instead of Aragorn with Gimli) which meant I wouldn’t have had Aragorn for the counter attack and wouldn’t have been able to destroy that awful Marauder and discard the 6 shadow cards it suddenly gained. This may have spelled a certain loss for me the next turn with a hero death. This was just about the worst start you can have with this quest (three nasty enemies all engaging first turn including both spies) combat wise so I like to think that this instead just shows how powerful the decks can be even against an awful start like this rather than highlighting that without Gildor I may have been screwed. To be fair just about any ally would have done in his place and there are several that would have survived that enemy attack as well such as Glorfindel, Haldir or a Guardian of Rivendell. So had I seen any of them instead it would have played out much the same albeit with a little less willpower (only Glorfindel has 3 willpower like Gildor). Still seeing Gildor specifically who would not only withstand the attack easily but would then contribute his willpower from then on (or his ability) was a perfect stroke of both luck and power from The Last Elven Host during the first turn.

Gildor-Inglorion.jpg
Gildor saved my bacon big time during that first round.

A silly mistake I made was hanging onto Test of Will for no real reason. I also ended up drawing Dwarven Tomb which meant I could get an additional use out of Test of Will but still did not use it even once. I really should have cancelled Cornered when it appeared as it would have essentially stopped the point of damage Gimli took and the two points of damage Aragorn took that turn (could have avoided an attack if engagement cost of enemies was not lowered). This was fairly inconsequential in the end though and I still easily achieved victory so not a big deal. I do tend to sometimes brave lesser treacheries and hang onto Test of Will only for the worst of the worst. Sometimes this pays off and I have a copy at a critical moment and other times I unnecessarily suffer lesser treacheries and never use test of will or don’t use it for anything special in the end. Due to the fact you can so easily draw another copy (by manipulating and drawing from the deck with Stargazer+Elven Light)  or can get a copy back from your discard with Dwarven Tomb I think I need to learn to use test of will less sparingly.

Overall I am very happy with not just the results of the game itself but with my recording of the playthrough. Please let me know if you spy any mistakes at all grammatical or mechanical (I played with extreme caution like always though so there really shouldn’t be actual gameplay mistakes)  or if you have any feedback! I will be continuing these turn by turn reports so if you have any suggestions or requests (nothing overly punishing or overly long or it won’t be nearly as fun recording) for an upcoming quest please let me know

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