Joe Eagle
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I thought I'd share these two official Q&A from Caleb Grace.

The second one means To Catch An Orc is a lot harder than it otherwise would be.

QUESTION: There are treacheries in The Fords of Isen that "attach to the current quest". Does this mean "attach to the current quest card/stage", so that they will be discarded if you progress to another stage? Or do they stay in play for the whole game?

ANSWER: Treacheries that attach to the current quest are discarded when the stage they are attached to leaves play.

QUESTION: Stage 2B of To Catch an Orc reads: "Response: After questing successfully, cancel all progress that would be placed on this stage. Then, place 1 time counter on this stage. Or, if Mugash is in play, advance to stage 3."
My interpretation of the "Then" clause is that, if you have quested successfully but were not going to place any progress on the stage (because of an active location), therefore the "Then" clause will fail because no progress has been cancelled.

ANSWER: You are correct about stage 2B, the "Then" clause is conditional on canceling progress that would be placed "on this stage." Therefore, the players must place at least 1 progress onto the quest in order to cancel that progress and add 1 time counter. This wording was deliberate to make the choice of whether or not to travel to a location, and which location to travel to, a tense decision. If you quest successfully, but all of your progress is absorbed by the active location, then you will not be able to add a time counter to the quest.
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Matthew D
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that's how I'd been playing the Quest card - I thought the wording was rather clear. similar effects have used the phrase "questing successfully" which is different than literally placing progress on a stage (versus active location).

when in doubt, make it harder for yourself!

but, it's nice to have official clarification!
 
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Greg Burkett
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Oh wow... Totally missed this. And I thought this quest was tough before! Good gravy!
 
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George Leoniak
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I'm happy I was playing it that way, since this is very bad news if you were playing the other way and having a difficult go.
 
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Mark Tipper
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The Stage 2 wording issues struck me last night as I was finishing this quest, the wording is very unclear. I'm getting a little tired of trying to decode the various phrases used in the game, there are far too many rules questions popping up each time a new set is released. It's a barrier to entry into the game, and it needs to be fixed. Can't the phrase "If at least 1 progress token was cancelled" instead of "then" be used? They've decided to go against the normal english language convention of the word "then", and that just shouldn't be done.

Consider this: Imagine telling someone "If you go to the store, get peppers. Then, get apples." If there were no peppers, I'd certainly expect them to get apples, wouldn't you? Apparently those making rules for the LOTR card game don't think so.
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Tim C.
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casanunda13 wrote:
The Stage 2 wording issues struck me last night as I was finishing this quest, the wording is very unclear. I'm getting a little tired of trying to decode the various phrases used in the game, there are far too many rules questions popping up each time a new set is released. It's a barrier to entry into the game, and it needs to be fixed. Can't the phrase "If at least 1 progress token was cancelled" instead of "then" be used? They've decided to go against the normal english language convention of the word "then", and that just shouldn't be done.

Consider this: Imagine telling someone "If you go to the store, get peppers. Then, get apples." If there were no peppers, I'd certainly expect them to get apples, wouldn't you? Apparently those making rules for the LOTR card game don't think so.


Think of it like programming language syntax.
"If you go to the store, get peppers. Then, get apples."

The "then get apples" is predicated upon getting peppers. If peppers were not retrieved then apples will not be retrieved either.

In normal everyday language you of course wouldn't communicate that way. However normal everyday speech is prone to error and confusion. Using a programming style wording in the games logic syntax helps keep things concise, clear, logical, and avoids broad interpretation for the most part.

This can be confusing for those that don't understand how this works. There is a bit of a learning curve. However there are other card games out there that try to use more natural language and it just creates a lot of interpretation problems.
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Rob Jennings
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That first ruling makes those conditions less brutal than I was playing them. Why didn't they say "Attach to the current quest phase" instead of "Attach to the current quest"?
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Master of Lore
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mbd1982 wrote:
when in doubt, make it harder for yourself!


That's what I've been doing with the Treachery Conditions in The Ford of Isen.

sechen_rob wrote:
That first ruling makes those conditions less brutal than I was playing them. Why didn't they say "Attach to the current quest phase" instead of "Attach to the current quest"?


Don't know either, but glad to see this ruling. My win percentage has been about 50% on this quest, largely based on how early those treacheries came out.
 
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ys jo
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I've always understood progress tokens that 'would have been placed on current quest' goes to active location ever since the clarification on Legolas and Blades of Gondolin,

so by that logic assumed when the card says 'cancel all progress that would be placed on this stage',
it meant I had option of putting time counter by canceling progress tokens on active location,
since progress tokens on active locations are progress tokens that would've been placed on current quest.

jjeagle wrote:
If you quest successfully, but all of your progress is absorbed by the active location, then you will not be able to add a time counter to the quest.


This seems illogical to me, but if that's the official response I guess that's the way it is.


Edit: This ruling actually makes the 2nd quest whole lot easier for me.
Now I can add time counter and clear active locations as long as I make enough progress XD.
 
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Dave D
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pixel pusher wrote:
Think of it like programming language syntax.
"If you go to the store, get peppers. Then, get apples."

The "then get apples" is predicated upon getting peppers. If peppers were not retrieved then apples will not be retrieved either.

In normal everyday language you of course wouldn't communicate that way. However normal everyday speech is prone to error and confusion. Using a programming style wording in the games logic syntax helps keep things concise, clear, logical, and avoids broad interpretation for the most part.

This can be confusing for those that don't understand how this works. There is a bit of a learning curve. However there are other card games out there that try to use more natural language and it just creates a lot of interpretation problems.


I'd totally agree with you, if there were an "if" anywhere in that card text. The if is key, otherwise I read it as two independent actions, happening in sequence.
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Justin Davis
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Agree with the complaints that the wording is way too overly vague. I NEVER would have caught or even imagine that it was implied that at least one progress token has to be placed on the quest in order to add a time counter.

This is the wording we received:

"Response: After questing successfully, cancel all progress that would be placed on this stage. Then, place 1 time counter on this stage. Or, if Mugash is in play, advance to stage 3."


This is the wording we could have received:

"Response: After questing successfully, if at least one progress token would be placed on this stage, place 1 time counter on this stage instead. Or, if Mugash is in play, advance to stage 3."

I understand you need to be very economical with words, but this is ~3 more, and would have made a world of difference. It was also probably worth a short, 2-3 sentence clarification in the rules packet, as FFG often does with other new mechanics.

The problem, for me, is that in other scenarios that instruct you to do multiple things, you often do as much as you can. So, the way the rules are written, I read it like this:

A) I quested successfully, so I trigger the response.
B) There are no progress tokens to be placed on the stage. So I have none to cancel.
C) I add a time counter to the quest, since I quested successfully.
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Mark Tipper
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kurahoshi wrote:
pixel pusher wrote:
Think of it like programming language syntax.
"If you go to the store, get peppers. Then, get apples."

The "then get apples" is predicated upon getting peppers. If peppers were not retrieved then apples will not be retrieved either.

In normal everyday language you of course wouldn't communicate that way. However normal everyday speech is prone to error and confusion. Using a programming style wording in the games logic syntax helps keep things concise, clear, logical, and avoids broad interpretation for the most part.

This can be confusing for those that don't understand how this works. There is a bit of a learning curve. However there are other card games out there that try to use more natural language and it just creates a lot of interpretation problems.


I'd totally agree with you, if there were an "if" anywhere in that card text. The if is key, otherwise I read it as two independent actions, happening in sequence.


Couldn't agree more, it's completely unlike any programming language in that it's missing an "if". The closest word would be "after", since it's also a conjunction, and implies some kind of logical condition. "Cancel" does no such thing, it's a verb, not any kind of conditional. Any form of logic would arrive at the conclusion that the two following clauses are completely conditional on questing successfully, and nothing else.

I'm aware that I'm being quite literal about this, and that's really not the point. The point is that in normal, everyday language, which we as normal, everyday people speak, that it doesn't make sense. That's what my example was meant to show. Rules written in such a manner need to be rewritten.
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Joe Eagle
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However, it is spelt out clearly in the FAQ that the word "Then" means that clause is dependent on the successful fulfilment of the preceding clause.
So, while the wording may not be ideal, the rules meaning is very clear.

"If a card effect uses the word “then,” then the preceding
effect must resolve successfully for the subsequent
dependent effect to resolve."
 
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Mark Tipper
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jjeagle wrote:
However, it is spelt out clearly in the FAQ that the word "Then" means that clause is dependent on the successful fulfilment of the preceding clause.
So, while the wording may not be ideal, the rules meaning is very clear.

"If a card effect uses the word “then,” then the preceding
effect must resolve successfully for the subsequent
dependent effect to resolve."


My point is that this should be rethought. I don't want to be referring back to the FAQ every time I need a clarification on what redefinition of the English language the designers have decided to use, that isn't good design. Rules should not be counter-intuitive.
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