Rev. David Moore
Well here is my '12th' game (counting one crack with the 'expansion' figures/rules. 'Tonight' 4 of us played at Millennium Games. We played base set only (no expansion figs), as it was first time for half of us.
Joe played SARUMAN; Steve played SAURON; Jeff played GONDOR & ELVES; and I was left with ROHAN & THE NORTH. I've never done a 'session review' before and I see everyone giving Kudos for Theme-accurate descriptions, so, I'll give it a try:
'The Elves' decided to start the Fellowship out of Rivendale...only to have a group of 'Uruk-Hai' (apparently) attack the Fellowship immediately! 'Gandalf' himself was unexpectedly 'slain' by the Uruk-Hai
Captain and his assassins, as the rest of the Fellowship stealthed away into the woods.
Time past, and both Sauron and Saruman moved with stealth and guile. The Shadow force 'slowly' moved to become a threat, and all but ignored it's northern holdings.
The Fellowship moved toward the Mines of Moria, and stealthily moved through it into Lorien. Just outside of the Lady of Light's realm, Legolas rushed to the Woodland Realm to alert the North, Dwarves and Elves there of the impending threat of the Shadow forces.
The Fellowship rested briefly in Lorien, while Sauron took Osgiliath. However, Boromir and Strider cut out ahead and marshalled the forces of the White City to take back Osgiliath. At the same time, Saruman routed the Rohirrim at the Fords of Isden, and moved into Rohan's borders.
Soon after, Ciridan sent ships and two battalions of his finest Warriors from the Grey Havens to meet Theodren's force on the coast outside of Rohan's nearest borders. On the way back to Helm's Deep, the Theodren was slain by Saruman's Uruk-Hai.
Finally, Gandalf the White appeared in Fangorn Forest and convinced Treebeard to help against Saruman. The Ents attacked Orthanc 'twice' and decimated '4 legions of Uruk-Hai' - but could not destroy Saruman himself. Then the Gandalf accompanied Elven reinforcements into Helms Deep to secure it, where Gimly and Merry joined him.
The Fellowship proceeded with all speed through Rohan and toward Minas Tirith - which came under a full siege by Sauron's dark forces. Trolls and Ringwraiths wracked the Walls - and Aragorn himself slew Thw Witch-King with 'Anduril: the Flame of the West', now re-forged by Elrond's smiths. With the armies of Sauron held at bay, the Black Ships brought a siege of Southron's Oliphants and Archers to Dol Amroth - which fell soon when one of the Great Beasts charged to its own suicide to shatter the western gate of the keep!
Upon seeing the seige of the White City - Samwise bade Frodo and Pippin to double-time it across North Ilien and into Mordor. Pip was captured (and killed) as the group reached Mt. Doom - and Gollum, long lurking behind the group - now offered his assistance to protect and serve "The Precious".
Hastily the Trio ascended Mt. Doom, while the North and Rohan finally declared WAR! Legolas met a group of Dunedein out of Carrock and headed south to aid the efforts. Meanwhile, Elrond led a Cavalry charge out of Rivendale itself toward Entmoors to dispatch a group of War-Trolls gathering there. Elrond's efforts kept Sauron's minions around Moria from posing a threat the the Western and Northern lands!
While scrimages occured in and around various Gondor settlements - no major losses occurred. Saruman could not seriously endanger Helms Deep, and the re-inforcements under Legolas aiding Rohan prevented further incursions toward Edoras.
Meanwhile, Frodo, Sam and Gollum had gotten near the Crack of Doom - only to have Frodo 'fail' to find the 'character' he needed to continue. The Ring 'taxed' him as he was delayed from taking the last steps into Mt. Doom.
Soon though, Sam urged him on, and with Gollum in tow, Frodo prepared to hurl the ring into the lava below. Almost at the end of his endurance - Gollum attacked without warning - took the Ring and sent Frodo over the abyss into the molten death below.
But, Sauron did not prevail. Saruman had conquered Dol Amroth and another city of Gondor on his way to Minas Tirith from the West. He compelled the thrall Gollum right into the clutches of his Uruk-Hai army near Minas Morgul - and they quickly returned the Ring-of-Power to him in Orthanc. Now Saruman the Istari (like Gandalf: in reality a Maiar demi-god of Valinor) had the One Ring. His fellow Maiar Sauron, would now be his 'lieutenant' - while Saruman ruled Middle-Earth!