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

Subject: Any tips for beating Down the Anduin solo? rss

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Drake Coker
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I have a 40-ish card Leadership/Tactics deck built around Prince Imrahil, Theodred and Legolas. The basic ideas in it are using weak Allies to block and die and using that to allow Imrahil to both quest and attack. Between him and Legolas, I can pretty reliably kill a monster most turns and place progress tokens via Legolas' ability. Theodred gets used for additional questing and resource generation.

Against Mirkwood, it's a good deck.

Against Anduin, it's a hopeless failure. It always starts off well: in six tries, it has yet to have any issues dealing with the troll.

I found stage 2 to be completely deadly, however. The two encounter card draw simply builds up threat too fast to handle. Once it hits 10 or so, then it's not long before it snowballs and it's game over.

I've trimmed and pushed my deck as much as I can in terms of getting affordable willpower into it (from leadership and tactics, i.e. not much), but it's not enough.

Last play, I tried building up a huge, solid force before taking the troll down. I killed the troll at 28 threat with several allies and attachments in play and no other cards in the staging area. The stage 1 card itself had a dozen or so progress counters on it so I immediately entered stage 2.

I did ok for awhile, the encounter deck was near the bottom by the time it was over. But I never got more than 3 progress counters out of the 16 I needed. I pulled mostly monsters out of the encounter deck and you can only engage one a turn per the stage 2 card, so they just kept adding up.

Any tips for dealing with Stage 2? Everyone seems to post about dealing with the troll, but, frankly, that seems like the easy part.
 
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Tony Fanchi
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There are already a lot (and I mean A LOT) of threads on this topic, but to be brief, engage an enemy every turn so Legolas can kill it for progress, use Faramir to pump up your questing (even allies with 0 Willpower gain +1 from him), and travel whenever you can.

Tactics/Leadership is just not a very good combo for this one. Spirit gives you the Northern Tracker to take out the piling up of locations and Dunhere to attack enemies in the staging area where they can't attack you.

Also, Imrahil probably isn't an optimal choice for a Tactics/Leadership deck. He's best suited to working with Spirit, which has lots of allies that leave play. I'd recommend swapping him out for Aragorn so he can both quest and attack/defend on every turn (I'd imagine Imrahil probably isn't able to on many turns).
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David Ainsworth
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Stage 2 is, as you can see, about putting out as much Willpower as possible in as little time as possible so threat doesn't spiral out of control. Here's my experience solo:

*Northern Tracker is a beast for Stage 2.
*Dwarf builds with Dain and (multiple) applications of Untroubled by Darkness destroy this phase.
*Faramir is exceptionally strong in any deck for this phase.
*Rohan also deals with this phase very well with Astonishing Speed and general location manipulation.
*Dunhere, especially buffed with Dunedain Mark or the like, is also great in this stage (and with unexpected courage, woo boy).

As far as Leadership/Tactics goes, though, there's just not much you can work with. You can use Faramir of course, though you don't want to be dropping allies like you are if using him, as the more you have the better. Maybe swap Imrahil out for Aragorn (and put in Celebrian's Stone too) to give you more questing power without relying on allies dying. With Celebrian's Stone providing Aragorn with Spirit, you can even add some Galadhrim's Greeting into the deck, though that may not be necessary. If you Sneak Attack Gandalf during the Quest Phases, you can also use him to clear excess enemies from the Staging Area by hitting them for 4 damage, so save your Sneak Attacks for this phase. You can also help take down high threat locations in the staging area quickly by using Snowbourn Scout/Ride to Ruin combos (with Celebrian's Stone anyway).

At the end of the day though it's about speed. The faster you clear the stage the easier it is.
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Drake Coker
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Thanks both of you. I did read most of the threads I could find, but they usually focused on the troll and not so much stage 2.

I think perhaps my death-to-weenies approach, while it does work, is denying Faramir too much of his benefit. I'll look at shifting to Aragorn for Imrahil and shooting for more staying power.
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Bart Rachemoss
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I agree with the others. I think Lore and Spirit are best for this quest, although I like to add some leadership for resource generation.

One trick is to delay making progress on stage one until you've had time to build up a substantial allied army to take on stage two. Ideally you would then get through stage two in just one or two turns.

Spirit is good because of all the questing and progress power they have. Lore is good because of the forest snare for the troll and because it can peak at the encounter deck. IMO, it really helps to have at least one or the other although having both is even better. If you snare the troll then you don't have to worry about making too much progress. You can wait until you are fully prepared for the next stage and then kill off the troll and away you go.

If you don't snare the troll then peaking at the top card of the encounter deck allows you to know how much willpower to commit to exactly match the threat that will be in the staging area.

Oh yes. One more thing. Lore has Protector of Lorien and also card draw such as: Beravor, Bilbo, and Gleowine. This is another way to power through the second stage.

The main problem with this approach is the quest becomes so easy it starts to get boring after a while.
 
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Trent Hamm
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I usually use Lore/Spirit/Leadership for this, with three champs.

It's funny how each quest has a very different optimal deck. What I've been doing lately is trying to develop a deck that can at least give you a shot at ANY scenario.
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Drake Coker
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Postscript:

Putting in Aragorn and removing cards built around allies leaving the field did beat the scenario, but not very often.

One win, 2 near wins and, oh, 10-ish losses, all pretty much by turn 3. Heroes dead on turn one, two trolls engaged by turn two, etc, etc. The one point increase in starting threat by adding Aragorn left the deck very vulnerable to getting the troll on turn one or two, and often minimally developed by then. I eventually concluded that if I didn't start with Feint or Gandalf, it was going to be a rough, short ride

So, a win. Kind of. Not a great deck for the scenario, but I can stop fussing with it now and turn to different spheres for a rematch.
 
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If you wish to keep using Leadership/Tactics focusing on Imrahil,
I think you're best option is to wait at stage 1 until Faramir shows up, then proceed to quest 2.

On the other hand, if you simply wish to win against the scenario,
use a deck with lots of draw power, 2 sneak attack + 3 gandalves, and protector of lorien. (a draw deck can deflect anything encounter deck can throw at you)
 
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Ryan McLelland
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I generally try to avoid stage 2 until I have a lot of questing out one way or the other. I never want to stay in stage 2 for more than 2 turns. The troll is really not a big deal with most decks in my experience so I will try to keep my threat down and wait until I have enough questing allies to really blitz the second stage. This also makes the third stage a much easier task.
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