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Subject: A battle of the realm rss

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Ben Marks
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Hemel Hempstead
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Note: This is a session report from a game of War of the Ring played this weekend. Both players were relatively new to the game and I (as the shadow player) sought advice on BGG, a large amount of strategy was offered up by havoc110 and I would like to thank him for the victory. This is the first in any of the games I have played where I have managed to beat my brother at War of the Ring.

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Shadow:
Ben Marks
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Hemel Hempstead
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Free Peoples:
Joshua Marks
United Kingdom
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Thanks to
Donald Walsh
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Columbia
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The story of middle earth begun the same as any other telling, the fate rested on the destruction of one small and insignificant looking ring. The fellowship was setting out from Rivendell on their journey, albeit somewhat lighter than usual tellings of this story as Gimli and Boromir had not journeyed forth with the fellowship and had instead returned to their homelands to inform them of the impending war.


SP:The might of the white tower was brought into the fray early in the tale with Saruman himself mustering an army and invading the boarders of Rohan, ignoring Helm’s Deep and heading straight for Edoras. With Rohan’s forces suspecting of Saruman’s treachery Edoras was nearly deserted and Helms Deep fortified to full capacity. During this time Sauron unable to muster his deadliest servant brought forth his forces to the edge of Mordor and issues commands of war.

FP:The free people’s nations did little to protect themselves against the pending war except place their hope in the fellowship and the destruction of the ring, which moves two leagues even with the double eye of Sauron focused on the ring. Military actions were taken with the fortification of Helms Deep.

SP:Sauron moved his army out from Mordor in timing with the summoning of the witch King on Angmar, the black captain and the army moved across Osgiliath and into Minas Tirith. The battle waged for many rounds and Boromir was taken as casualty as an effect of combat (card). Then many more effects of combat make to fruition allowing the forces of shadow to make quick work of the citadel and claim Minas Tirith to the dark. During the fall of the citadel the white hand continued to plague Rohan pinning Théoden King in helms deep with little hope for respite.

FP:All of the free peoples of middle earth placed their hope in a small hobbit, who continued his journey forth with the ring, Gandalf as the guide made use of the elven ring Narya and allowed the FP to gather more events which he hoped would assist them in their struggle.

SP:Having conquered Minas Tirith Sauron turned his eye on the rest of Gondor . Leaving a small militia to look after the citadel Sauron quickly took Pelagir and Dol Ameroth before taking his forces around the mountains to pin in the forces at Helms Deep. While the pirates from a foreign land began to muster in the East.

FP: Sensing that their end was nigh the Free Peoples placed their hope in Gandalf the White who had suffered a mortal blow while guiding the fellowship. Unfortunately for the forces of evil, the true white wizard encountered the ancient and mighty Ent Treebeard during his reincarnation in Fangorn and together they moved forth to assist at Helms Deep. Their combined leadership made this a mighty army and unnerved the forces of the white tower.

SP: With Helms Deep no longer ripe for the taking the forces of evil mustered an army of pirates quickly due to events that took place and was able to move forth on the Iron Hills. The dwarves made a last stand in Erabor. They sensed their home was doomed and not for the first time in the history of Middle Earth abandoned the mountain to the invader, making a retreat for the Woodland Realm and the help of the elves. There was however, little relief as the forces of evil moved swiftly after them and tool the woods for their own…sealing the fate of Middle Earth.
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Itamar Parann
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Cool move, bypassing Helm's Deep :-)
Why did FP not move against Isengard while its forces were a-roaming far afield?
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Ben Marks
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Hemel Hempstead
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I left enough in Isenguard that I couldn't be screwed by an Ent card (which is a favourite move of his!)
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Donald Walsh
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Hey Ben,

Good Job! I'll only take very little credit for what you were able to do.

The Edoras play is inventive. It seems that you had Theoden pinned down in HD, so you could run a few units east and take the capital.

Also, you seemed to be playing with Lords of Middle Earth. The expansion allows for what I call a lot of "off-script" action within the game.

What I mean by that is that I usually play Shadow, and most of our games (base 1ed or 2ed rules only) look the same. I've told my "regular" opponent (since we play so many different games we only play WotR like once a year) that next time either I'll play FP or we'll add LoME to shake things up.

So how did this game differ from past games? How far did the FSP get and at what price in casualties/corruption? How did you like the expansion?

The pinning of FP forces I didn't even mention, but that is also a very crucial element to SP play. Watch the FP waste some dice and build up a defense in a Stronghold. Pin it with a larger force he is unwilling to fight out in the field, and then look to softer targets elsewhere. Also this is very handy for putting the kibosh on potentially dangerous FP armies that if left unchecked, could try to run out for a chance to get a FP military victory. My last game I pinned forces in MT, then sent the WK away to secure the last points I needed (also Erebor).

Now I want to play again, soon.

Thanks for the report.
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Ben Marks
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Hemel Hempstead
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I went with the Edoras play largely in an attempt to grab points. I always find Strongholds are a bloody tough nut to crack when full and I thought it would be a little easier.

I love the expansion we always use it, I feel it makes what is an amazing game slightly more rich although it does help the FP quite a bit more than the shadow I believe....

I was far more aggressive than in other games but was also far more carful with my armies, the game itself was shorter than those we have played before (in terms of turns) and there was not a huge amount of corruption on Frodo, maybe 5? He was able to get 2-3 steps away from the edge of Mordor.
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