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War of the Ring: Warriors of Middle-earth» Forums » Rules

Subject: Treebeard was useful! But did I play it right...? rss

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Marco MacDaddy
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Treebeard actually saved my game over the weekend, and I went on to win via a ring dunk. Did I play it right though...?

Rohan had been wiped out early by a hyper aggressive Saruman and Dunlendings, and my Ents had only got off the ground after the last Rohirrim town was taken by the Shadow - so Rohan was out of the game unless I could free some settlements. I had already used my faction die in the round to recruit a Dead Man (for some desperate defense of Dol Amroth) and there was only one Ent in Fangorn. I used a muster die to bring in Treebeard.

I then used a March of the Ents to move Treebeard into Rohan (the area with no settlement on it... Eastemnet maybe? Don't have the board with me). I then used Riders of Rohan to recruit some Rohirrim in Treebeard's area (because he counts as a Companion for the event cards). The Rohirrim then freed some settlements and Edoras, allowing me to recruit as fast as possible, reigniting the fight in Rohan and delaying the Shadow just long enough to ring dunk.

My questions are as follows though:

1. Does Treebeard count as an Ent like the normal Ent figures (thus keeping the Entwood alive (if he and a companion are alone there) and functioning like a normal faction Ent)?

2. Can he thus be moved around by the faction Ent cards? (Not needing to be moved like a character with a character die)

3. Do you think a fringe case where Treebeard was the difference between victory and defeat will ever occur again?
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Roy Subs
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You cannot move Treebeard with the "March of the Ents" card I'm sorry to say. It's something that I've advocated a revision for on the Facebook War of the Ring page, but these are just proposals at present https://www.facebook.com/groups/WotRonline/permalink/1354290.... Treebeard is a Companion only. He can be activated from Level 0 to Level 2 after a March of the Ents or an Ents Call to Battle effect, but is not a part of the Ents Faction for any purposes or rules that mention "Ent figures", so is not an "Ent" as defined on the March of the Ents card.

1. No

2. No

3. Yes, you could have moved Treebeard to Eastemnet (by first activating him to Level 2 as above, then moving him with a Character result on an Action die to move Companions) and used Riders of Rohan in this way, so he could be very useful in cases like this.

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Marco MacDaddy
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Are you certain of this? How can he not be considered an Ent? That's crazy!!!

I question your certainty because I really hope you're wrong, and because you say he is a Companion. He isn't. He only counts as one for the purposes of Event and Combat cards. Thus he can't keep the Entwood alive without a real companion in Fangorn too.

Do you have a source that definitively says he isn't an Ent?

If he isn't then he is almost as stupid as that 'Tidings not burdens' joke expansion designed solely for the purpose of giving the finger to loyal fans.
 
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Roy Subs
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That's right, he acts like a Companion for cards.

Treebeard is an Ent, but is NOT a part of the "Ent Faction" in game terms. No rules state that he is, and his card clearly defines what he is and his function/limitations. He is not moveable by any of the Ent Faction cards (see above discussion on Facebook, and also there is another thread in here specifically on Treebeard that goes over his limitations some more.

I agree that he should be movable by the March of the Ents card and put forward proposals for this on the Facebook link. You could decide to use some variant of that as a house rule if you and your opponent agreed to it, but of course any official changes can only be made by the designers (who I know are very careful about maintaining the game balance).

Yes, there have been quite a few discussions about Treebeard maybe being a little under powered in current state. This was originally only intended as a Promo of course so was always an optional component.
 
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Torben
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https://boardgamegeek.com/thread/1624937/treebeard-not-compa...
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David Umstattd
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Treebeard isn't an "Ent" in the same way that Aragorn isn't a Gondor regular. Sure he's a Gondor fighter, and a freaking good one at that. But it's the difference between a single guy and a bunch. In the case of the Ents I'd say a single Ent figure represents about a dozen Ents. Compared to a dozen Ents Treebeard simply isn't the same from a combat perspective. But he does have great influence and power, as represented by his stats.
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Marco MacDaddy
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But Treebeard is an Ent (thematically), although the rules do not specifically define him as such - this is what is so frustrating. Nor do the March of the Ents cards refer to 'Ent Faction Figures', they refer to 'Ents' only.

Faction figures are not army units either, so the Aragorn vs Gondor Regular comparison is not completely convincing I think. It further breaks down because Treebeard isn't a companion either - so what the new rules really mean is that he has the same value in the game as those irritating 'joke' cards that came as the recent promo-expansion. Note that the Witch-King still gets to be a Nazgul in the game - while the Lord of the Ents is neither a Companion, nor a Faction figure, nor a Unit, and the ultimate slap in the face is that he isn't even an Ent!!!

Previously he was almost never mustered, but had a fringe use in freeing up a Companion to leave Fangorn about 1 in every 10 games. He did feel at least thematic if not powerful.

Now he has literally NO use in the game whatsoever - even the stats he brings to the table are now essentially meaningless since he must perforce hang out with a companion who probably has better stats.

What I fail to see is why Ares saw fit to include a new card for him in the Warriors expansion. They need only have included a match with an instruction to burn the figure and previous card. It's what they have effectively done anyway.
 
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Roy Subs
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The Witch-king is an individual, just like all Nazgul, but he is a more powerful Nazgul (+2 leadership and Sorcerer ability vs +1 leadership). The regiments (orcs) under them have a different ability (can attack Army units, can take control of Settlements, etc).

Faction figures are not "units" (hence the "figures" vs "units" distinction), but they are large collections of whatever group they represent. So say that an "Ents figure" is 200 lesser Ents in a group, they have an ability assigned to them, to do a rush strike of 3 dice, hitting on 4+. 1 Ents regiment can literally destroy 3 regular units (thousands of people!) in a single strike. To me, that's very powerful. The Witch-king can't do that. Aragorn can't do that. And of course, Treebeard can't do that either, as he is an individual Ent, a character, as opposed to a regiment. He has a different ability, which is +1 Combat Strength in combat (and to act as a Companion on any Event or Combat card). That distinction is important, he is a single character, not a regiment.

Remember also that these are magical creatures in a mythical universe being modelled, not Napoleon compared to a regiment of his French troops. But if we were using the WOTR system to model that, maybe Napoleon would be +2 leadership and +1 Combat Strength, while the French regiment would be like a regular Army unit. And maybe another character under Napoleon might have +1 Combat Strength, like Treebeard.

I do share your concerns that Treebeard maybe needs just a tiny bit more love, but he was never a core component to the game, and if you have concerns about how meaningful he is, for sure leave him out of any given game. We could argue that Cirdan or Shelob should have character cards and miniatures and specfic rules, but for me it's ok. There are enough tough and complex decisions to make in a game (i.e. Should I recruit more Ents or more Dead Men, or should I bring the Eagles into play this turn!, or Galadriel or Elrond, or Aragorn or Gandalf with my 1 Will of the West this turn! etc).
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Rafael Ramus
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+1 to the idea of Treebeard being able to move through the use of Ent cards. Makes sense both mechanically and thematically (OK, maybe more thematically than mechanically... anyway, +1 still).
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Kolby Reddish
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Think of this simply. Treebeard isn't an Ent faction figure because he's not even included in the expansion. Each faction has only 8 figures (the rulebook tells you this). Do you really think the designers wanted the Ents to have 9? And for only those people who had previously picked up the promo?

Treebeard still gets benefits from certain Ent cards being played (which works thematically) but he simply isn't an Ent faction figure.
 
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Rafael Ramus
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reddish22 wrote:
Do you really think the designers wanted the Ents to have 9? And for only those people who had previously picked up the promo?


Or just painted one of the Ents differently to represent Treebeard. You could also not paint and use a coin or poker chip to represent the guy.

I don't see allowing Treebeard to move with faction cards as the same as having an Ent unit figure, but even if you do I'd still see no problem: just place a limit of 8 Ents so that you can either bring Treebeard or ent 8 into play.

I think this would work for everyone!

Disclaimer: I do own the promo, so there's that as it feels so useless sometimes.
 
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Kolby Reddish
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Respectfully, I don't think you are understanding the OP's question. He was attempting to treat Treebeard as an Ent faction figure.
 
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Rafael Ramus
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reddish22 wrote:
Respectfully, I don't think you are understanding the OP's question. He was attempting to treat Treebeard as an Ent faction figure.


Oh, yes, I get it, and I'm not advocating exactly this per se. It's more that I'm all for Roy and Rafamir's points about revising Treebeard. As mentioned above, you'll find them here:

https://www.facebook.com/groups/WotRonline/permalink/1354290...

Some of them sound indeed make it sound like another Ent unit, but that is a bit misleading. The ones I'm interested the most are:

- Added for Warriors version: Treebeard counts as a Companion for keeping the Ents faction in play when in Fangorn or Rohan.

and

something along the lines of (I don't think that's it though):
-
"- Treebeard is level 0, and may only ever be moved with an Army, or, at the end of playing a March of the Ents or Father of Trees Event cards, you may choose to place him in any region occupied by, or adjacent to, a region occupied by an Ent figure."

I would like something more simple, like:
"- At the end of playing a March of the Ents or Father of Trees event cards, you may choose to move Treebeard to a region occupied by, or adjacent to, a region occupied by an Ent figure".

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Torben
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roysubs wrote:
Faction figures are not "units" (hence the "figures" vs "units" distinction) [...]

Great explanation; espacially the reminder that Treebeard is supposed to be a neutral promo.
Just to be precise, I suggest using the full term "army units". I think "units" can include Leaders, Nazgul and Characters, as in the following paragraph.
WotR manual wrote:

End of Battle
[...]
If the defending Army is eliminated or retreats, the attacker may immediately move all or part of the units participating in the attack into the embattled region.

 
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Marco MacDaddy
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roysubs wrote:
The Witch-king is an individual, just like all Nazgul, but he is a more powerful Nazgul (+2 leadership and Sorcerer ability vs +1 leadership). The regiments (orcs) under them have a different ability (can attack Army units, can take control of Settlements, etc).

Snip...


Great explanation and I don't disagree with anything.

I think my issue is that the expansion has hugely weakened Treebeard, who was already pretty weak. In base/LOME game his only real use was to free up a Companion from Fangorn while keeping the threat on Saruman. In this case him not being a Companion was fine, since to bring out the Ents he worked for the requisite cards.

Now, however, he still only counts as a Companion for cards, but there are now no cards you care to play with him. Since there are no Ent attack cards anymore, the only way to keep pressure on Saruman is to muster some Ents and hang out nearby Isengard. But this now requires a permanent Companion in Fangorn, and Treebeard doesn't count as a Companion even for the Ents. Thus his only useful attribute (freeing a Companion) is now gone. He has gone from being viable in about 1 in 5 games, to being totally unviable.

The fact that he isn't an Ent Companion just feels jarring and hugely unthematic, in a game where theme is so strong in all other respects. I will no longer include him in my games.

I recognize he is a promo, but with WOME the game designers seem to have signaled that all promos for this game are jokes/slaps in the face for customers. I am certainly not amused by the Tidings not Burdens crap.

In the books Treebeard is one of the toughest and most epic creatures on Middle Earth. In this game he is now a puny nothing who isn't even an Ent.
 
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David F
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Dratsabius wrote:
I then used Riders of Rohan to recruit some Rohirrim in Treebeard's area (because he counts as a Companion for the event cards). The Rohirrim then freed some settlements and Edoras, allowing me to recruit as fast as possible, reigniting the fight in Rohan and delaying the Shadow just long enough to ring dunk.


Treebeard yada yada... but without reading the Riders of Rohan card, I'm pretty sure flash-recruiting units to immediately liberate the settlement you're on doesn't happen? Rohan got swept away,
 
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Marco MacDaddy
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selwyth wrote:
Dratsabius wrote:
I then used Riders of Rohan to recruit some Rohirrim in Treebeard's area (because he counts as a Companion for the event cards). The Rohirrim then freed some settlements and Edoras, allowing me to recruit as fast as possible, reigniting the fight in Rohan and delaying the Shadow just long enough to ring dunk.


Treebeard yada yada... but without reading the Riders of Rohan card, I'm pretty sure flash-recruiting units to immediately liberate the settlement you're on doesn't happen? Rohan got swept away,


Strange to enter the conversation with such a condescending tone, but let me return the favour.

Clearly it confused you when I noted that I recruited the Rohirrim in an area "without a settlement". I see that the nuance of language was lost on you here, but to clarify, this means that there actually wasn't a settlement in that area.

It's odd that you are only "pretty sure" that flash recruiting units and insta-liberating settlements in the process is illegal. The rest of us are certain of this.

Anyway thanks for the contribution. You really advanced the conversation there.

High five.
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Atanasije Stojkovic
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Dratsabius wrote:
roysubs wrote:
The Witch-king is an individual, just like all Nazgul, but he is a more powerful Nazgul (+2 leadership and Sorcerer ability vs +1 leadership). The regiments (orcs) under them have a different ability (can attack Army units, can take control of Settlements, etc).

Snip...


Great explanation and I don't disagree with anything.

I think my issue is that the expansion has hugely weakened Treebeard, who was already pretty weak. In base/LOME game his only real use was to free up a Companion from Fangorn while keeping the threat on Saruman. In this case him not being a Companion was fine, since to bring out the Ents he worked for the requisite cards.

Now, however, he still only counts as a Companion for cards, but there are now no cards you care to play with him. Since there are no Ent attack cards anymore, the only way to keep pressure on Saruman is to muster some Ents and hang out nearby Isengard. But this now requires a permanent Companion in Fangorn, and Treebeard doesn't count as a Companion even for the Ents. Thus his only useful attribute (freeing a Companion) is now gone. He has gone from being viable in about 1 in 5 games, to being totally unviable.

The fact that he isn't an Ent Companion just feels jarring and hugely unthematic, in a game where theme is so strong in all other respects. I will no longer include him in my games.

I recognize he is a promo, but with WOME the game designers seem to have signaled that all promos for this game are jokes/slaps in the face for customers. I am certainly not amused by the Tidings not Burdens crap.

In the books Treebeard is one of the toughest and most epic creatures on Middle Earth. In this game he is now a puny nothing who isn't even an Ent.


There aren't Ent cards, but there are cards. You can bring Treebeard into Helm's Deep while under siege to bolster the defense, there are some good cards if there's a Companion to fight outside Helm's Deep or Orthanc and, potentially very significantly, you could play a Heroic Death with him.

He is underpowered, I'd agree. He's supposed to be a wise Entish leader, and yet literally his only connection to the faction is that he can move after an Ent card had been used. Even recruiting him isn't tied to the Faction, nor does he benefit it in any way.
 
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