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Returning the Ring

Lord of the Rings DigitalCulture

I have spent several months away from the Lord of the Rings LCG. When I first started to review this game and discuss it with people, I often threw around the title “Date Night has a whole new meaning” in reference to how nice it was to play this game with a lady friend.

Once my last relationship ended, my playing of LOTR dropped off the face of Middle Earth. As far as the game’s release schedule goes, it was probably the best time for such a thing. We’d played all the quests to completion at least once and no big cycles were coming out.

Now comes the difficult part of trying to dive back into a collectible game. Remembering and picking up the rules isn't so bad, but finding a new dynamic, time, and group to play with can be a real challenge. It is just so easy to regularly play a game when to do so you just say to someone you are living with, “Hey, want to throw down with Mordor this evening?”

The ease of creating decks in Star Wars LCG has already spoiled me when compared to other card games with its objective set strategy.

So, after saying all this, where am I going exactly?

Well, how about a strategy to pick back up with a game after dropping it for so long? I've been play testing this game for a while, so fortunately I am familiar with all the newer cards even though I have not used them in “legit” non-playtest decks yet.

One thing I am going to do to make it easy on myself is to use an old deck of trusty fella’s, short stout stunties that wreck shop against almost any type of quest.

The strategy for this deck is pretty simple. Allies are so versatile in that they can quest big, stack attacks, and block as a sacrifice to save heroes early on. Dwarves are durable enough that a lot of Treachery cards that might wipe out a portion of your force will be of no concern, especially if you can get out a Hardy Leadership. Dain lets you quest with a good value starting pretty early on with just a couple of characters and then if you can get out an Erebor Battle Master, even the toughest and biggest baddies will be no problem to you at all. The deck might benefit from an extra Steward of Gondor, but I just don’t like the feel of having more than one, thematically. I’d like to have no SoGs in there, but its just so darn powerful!

Hero (3)
Dain Ironfoot (RtM) x1
Gimli (Core) x1
Ori (OHaUH) x1

Ally (27)
Veteran of Nanduhirion (KD) x2
Erebor Battle Master (TLD) x3
Longbeard Elder (FoS) x3
Longbeard Orc Slayer (Core) x2
Veteran Axehand (Core) x3
Dori (OHaUH) x2
Erebor Hammersmith (Core) x3
Erebor Record Keeper (KD) x3
Longbeard Map-Maker (CatC) x3
Miner of the Iron Hills (Core) x3

Attachment (8)
Steward of Gondor (Core) x1
Hardy Leadership (SaF) x2
Legacy of Durin (TWitW) x2
Horn of Gondor (Core) x1
Dunedain Warning (CatC) x1
Dunedain Mark (THfG) x1

Event (11)
Khazad! Khazad! (KD) x3
Lure of Moria (RtR) x3
Feint (Core) x2
A Very Good Tale (OHaUH) x3

So thats the deck I'm diving back into the game with, what decks are you using now that we are starting the Against the Shadow cycle?

Next time: I'll dive into Allies and what makes them so great. Which allies should I send, EVERYONE!
  • Toqtamish, Zaidkw, DigitalCulture and 2 others like this


I qualitied this article this morning before it was approved to be posted. It is a good start for a series and good to see another game getting some coverage.

Some feedback for next time I think it would be good to go in to a bit more detail in the decks strategy.
May 16 2013 06:57 AM
Deck has only 46 of the 50 cards required for a legal deck.
Ancestral Knowledge (KD) might be a good addition for a bit of location management.
Just an observation
Well, I never play with a single deck, so maybe the question sounds dumb, but: How do you manage to play any of your allies (or indeed any card at all) in a three sphere deck without any of the neutral song cards (or something equivalent)?
Since you won't want to use Dain for anything (at least in the beginning), you'd have to survive 2-3 turns with only two heroes available. This strikes me as very dangerous.
May 16 2013 07:38 PM
Thanks for pointing out the card discrepancy. Apparently, I added other cards later. This list was set up to tackle the Hobbit quests, so I threw in Bilbo specific cards for those other slots originally.

It isn't too terribly risky, though it might look like it. Bifur can be switched out for Ori if its a big worry. But, since Dain has a high defense and HP and Gimli wants some damage on him, I usually quest with Gimli and Ori on turn 1. Dain is there as a blocker and so I quest for 6 on turn 1 by myself. I usually get out 2 allies on turn 2, which is pretty solid for questing and dealing with enemies. Ancestral Knowledge would be a good add for those extra slots.
May 16 2013 07:43 PM
(sorry for the double post)
I think you would benefit greatly with including a Narvi's Belt (KD). Especially on whichever character you equip with the Steward of Gondor.

Great to see more articles involving Lord of the Rings LCG. Look forward to reading more!
Great article, sir! I would suggest some copies of
We Are Not Idle (SaF) in the deck too, as that might help with resource generation, allowing you to have some explosive dwarf-play turns. It also combos well with Lure of Moria (RtR), which can give you a net gain if you exhaust more than three dwarves. I await some more LoTR LCG Articles in the future!
A Leadership deck with no Sneak Attack and Gandalf? ;)