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The Lord of the Rings: The Card Game» Forums » Strategy

Subject: Tactical advice for a new player rss

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andy bush

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Hi I've just started playing this game and it's excellent but I keep getting destroyed! One bit of advice - what do you do if you end up with a backlog of locations sat in the staging area? This keeps killing me on passage through mirkwood as I can never generate enough questing to offset the buildup of locations. Any tips?!
 
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Mr. D
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buschenfeld wrote:
what do you do if you end up with a backlog of locations sat in the staging area? This keeps killing me on passage through mirkwood


If you are playing solo, don't use the Tactics (red) deck.
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Jan Probst
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Kiel
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Tubarush wrote:
If you are playing solo, don't use the Tactics (red) deck.
Best "tactical" advice for the Core set. arrrh


What OP is describing we call "location lock" and is a known problem/phenomenon, especially at higher player counts. Basic rules framework at most allows 1 location to be cleared per turn (and that's with successful questing + spare), while more than 1 may end up appearing per turn (and questing may end up not successful, especially once you're into a developing lock).

The solution is ability to place extra progress outside of the basic framework, especially lots of progress, ie Northern Tracker in particular obliterates location lock and Spirit in general helps. Lore also gets some decent contribution in expansions.
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Josh Walton
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Yeah when you first start playing this game the threat presented to you by locations might seem rather innocuous compared to the far more obvious problem of surviving combat. But you really do need to have a plan for dealing with them, whether it's by having high willpower characters who are capable of questing through one each turn, or by using player cards typically found in Spirit and Lore to manipulate them in various ways. That's what makes it difficult to play solo with just a core set. The demands of the quest can often prove too much for one deck to handle. Especially if it's Tactics.

One piece of advice I would offer is trying to play the game two-handed. Play with two decks as if you're playing with two players. This is of course assuming your currently playing solo. I've always felt the game was beat played as a two player game and as such have almost exclusively played it two-handed. This can seem like a tall order when just learning the game as it's certainly complex enough without having to manage two decks but it's not too bad once you get the hang of it. But the trade off is having two decks affords you a lot more flexibility in your deck building, and more options to handle the various challenges the game presents. Good luck!
 
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andy bush

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Hey all thanks for your excellent advice. I have been playing solo but maybe dual handed might be the way - unless there's an expansion I need to buy to improve my chances solo??
 
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Mr. D
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The absolute best thing to do - if you want to learn how to play well - is figure out how to beat the first quest using each of the Spirit, Lore and Leadership decks.

They each have different strengths, weaknesses and playstyles. Once you do this, you will have a much better strategic understanding of the game.

You can win with the Tactics deck, but it takes a LOT of luck. Basically, you need Blades of Gondolin to show up early and you can't draw any locations.
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Rosen Crantz
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I ran into a similar issue when I played Journey along the Anduin, the second phase (forces you to draw two encounter cards instead of just one during questing phase) I got landlocked. Using the spirit deck (or at least alot of it) was what finally pushed me into victory. Eowyn (Spirit) has a base 4 Will, with the ability that she can discard a card to add +1 will. If you also get lucky with Favor of the Lady, that attachment adds another +1 will making her a questing powerhouse. Dunhere (Spirit) has the benefit of attacking staging area enemies if he fights alone. Him, with a weapon attachment (I forget which I used at the time), can keep the staging area enemies under control while your threat is somewhat low. He single-handedly killed the obligatory Hill Troll that is staged with JatA scenario 1B since I made sure my threat would start under 30. The previous poster was right about using Northern Trackers. It's a spirit ally that, when commited to a quest, lets you place one progress token on EACH location in the staging area.

So as long as the Tracker survives, every staging area location gets +1 progress. As long as Dunhere is alive, he can whittle down the high threat enemies without you being attacked. And as long as Eowyn lives, you'll have a very strong quester. Just my opinion, but I've found the spirit sphere to be the most versatile.

Just an aside, but I recently purchased Flames of the West. And let me say that the new Eowyn (Tactics) hero is amazing. I built a deck with Eowyn (Tactics), Theoden (Tactics), and Dunhere (spirit). With a deck that included Legolas (ally), Norther Tracker (ally), Beorn (ally) among others, this one mopped the floor with JatA when I played it again. Theoden gives all tactics heroes +1 will. Ewoyn already starts with 4 will, so that gave her five. With Favor of the Lady and Theoden's bonus, she has 6 will. Her special lets you start with -3 threat, so my three hero deck started with 26 threat. Not bad. Lucky draws with Spear of the Mark for Dunhere, Rohan Shield for Theoden, and Herugrim for Eowyn (once per round add Will to Str in combat) made this scenario almost too easy. Plus a lucky Gandalf draw at just the right time (thanks to ally Legolas ability to draw a card when he helps kill an enemy).

EDIT: The Hill Troll has an engagement cost of 30, which is why I wanted to start with threat <30. I don't like to read quest cards before playing them for the first time, so this nailed me and I lost very quickly. With starting threat >30, you'll pretty much always be fighting from behind on this scenario... I finally won on my fourth attempt (each attempt with a different deck build).
 
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andy bush

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Hey thanks for your help on this - I'll keep trying! Andy
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DOUGLAS BRUNDIN
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Andy, I also recommend using the Easy Mode rules. That made the game much more enjoyable for me.

I've found that each mission is sort of like a puzzle and the tools you need to solve each one is in the core set of cards. Hill Troll? There's a solution. Location Lock? There's a solution.

I recommend playing two handed and having each hand be dual-factions. You'll have all 4 factions in play and will likely have MOST of the core set cards available in your dual player decks. You'll quickly learn which key cards "solve" your specific problem.
 
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