Marco Poutré
Canada
St-Jean-sur-Richelieu
Quebec
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Anyone wanna babysit Gollum for me?

Player 1's deck

Eowyn, Glorfindel and Gloin. Initial threat of 30.

3x Gandalf
3x Miner of the Iron Hills
3x The Riddermark's Finest
2x Erebor Hammersmith
3x Snowbourn Scout
3x Bofur
3x Fast Hitch
3x Ancient Mathom
3x Protector of Lorien
3x Steward of Gondor
3x Celebrian's Stone
3x Sneak Attack
3x Unexpected Courage
3x A Test of Will
3x Hasty Stroke
3x Dwarven Tomb
3x Lore of Imladris

Player 2's deck

Legolas, Aragorn and Frodo Baggins. Initial threat of 28.

3x Gandalf
3x Gondorian Spearman
3x Zigil Miner
3x Westfold Horse-Breaker
3x West Road Traveller
3x Horn of Gondor
3x Unexpected Courage
3x Rivendell Blade
3x Blade of Gondolin
3x Sneak Attack
3x Hasty Stroke
3x A Test of Will
3x Feint
3x Valiant Sacrifice
3x Stand and Fight
2x Ride to Ruin
3x Hail of Stones

First player token to Player 1.

Player 1's starting hand : Gandalf, Ancient Mathom, Fast Hitch, Steward of Gondor, Snowbourn Scout, The Riddermark's Finest.

Player 2's starting hand : Ride to Ruin, Unexpected Courage, Hail of Stones, Horn of Gondor, Stand and Fight, Gondorian Spearman.

Setup :

Gollum controlled by Player 2. Encounter deck reveals Woodman's Glade and Caught in a Web (Attached to Gloin).

Very good setup.

Round 1 - Resource phase

Player 1 draws Sneak Attack, Player 2 draws Sneak Attack.

Round 1 - Planning Phase

Player 1 plays Ancient Mathom on Woodman's Glade and Fast Hitch on Frodo Baggins.
Player 2 plays Horn of Gondor on Aragorn.

Round 1 - Quest phase

Player 1 commits Eowyn and Glorfindel.
Player 2 commits Aragorn (Spending 1 resource to ready him) and Frodo Baggins (Exhausting Fast Hitch to ready him).

Encounter deck reveals Hummerhorns and Caught in a Web (Attached to Gloin).

Can't get any easier, I only need to get Unexpected Courage on Gloin to circumvent these 2 CiaW. Gandalf or Hail of Stones (Love that new card) will take care of Hummerhorns before it's too late.

Willpower of 11 to a threat of 3 = 8 progress tokens are put on the quest card.

Round 1 - Travel phase

Frodo Baggins is exhausted to travel to Woodman's Glade.

Round 1 - Encounter phase

Nothing happens.

Round 1 - Combat phase

Nothing happens.

Round 1 - Refresh phase

Player 1's Threat = 31.
Player 2's Threat = 32. (Control of Gollum remains unchanged)
First player token is passed to Player 2 (Yes I know this might be confusing).

Round 2 - Resource phase

Player 1 draws A Test of Will, Player 2 draws Hail of Stones.

Round 2 - Planning phase

Player 2 plays Unexpected Courage on Gloin.
Player 1 plays Steward of Gondor on Eowyn. Steward of Gondor is activated. Player 1 plays The Riddermark's Finest.

Round 2 - Quest phase

Player 2 commits Frodo Baggins (Readying him using Fast Hitch).
Player 1 commits Eowyn, Glorfindel and Gloin (Readying him using Unexpected Courage).

Encounter deck reveals Mountains of Mirkwood and Hill Troll.

Player 2 plays Sneak Attack, putting Gandalf into play and dealing 4 damage to Hill Troll. Player 2 plays Hail of Stones, exhausting Legolas, Aragorn, Frodo Baggins, Gandalf and The Riddermark's Finest to deal 5 damage to Hill Troll (It is killed).

Confirmed, I love that new card.

Willpower of 11 to a threat of 3 = 2 progress tokens are put on Woodman's Glade (It is explored, Player 1's threat is reduced to 29, Ancient Mathom triggers, Player 2 draws Blade of Gondolin, Gandalf and Feint.) and 6 progress tokens are put on the quest card (Stage 1 is completed).

Gandalf is returned to Player 2's hand (Aragorn gets 1 resource).

Only tricky bit is to make sure Eowyn is not the one guarding Gollum for this stage.

Round 2 - Encounter phase

Nothing happens.

Round 2 - Combat phase

Nothing happens.

Round 2 - Refresh phase

Player 1's Threat = 30.
Player 2's Threat = 36. (Control of Gollum remains unchanged)
First player token is passed to Player 1.

Round 3 - Resource phase

Player 1 draws Gandalf, Player 2 draws Rivendell Blade.

Round 3 - Planning phase

Player 2 plays Ride to Ruin, discarding The Riddermark's Finest to put 3 progress tokens on Mountains of Mirkwood (It is explored). Player 1 reveals Unexpected Courage (Put into hand), Protector of Lorien, Dwarven Tomb, Bofur and Lore of Imladris. Player 2 reveals Gandalf, Sneak Attack (Put into hand), Feint, Zigil Miner and Valiant Sacrifice.

Player 1 plays Unexpected Courage on Glorfindel and activates Steward of Gondor.

Round 3 - Quest phase

Player 1 commits Eowyn, Glorfindel and Gloin (Readying both with Unexpected Courage).

Encounter deck reveals The Spiders' Ring and Great Forest Web.

Player 2 plays Hail of Stones targeting Hummerhorns exhausting Legolas, Aragorn and Frodo Baggins (Readied using Fast Hitch) - It is killed.

Willpower of 9 to a threat of 5 = 4 progress tokens are put on the quest card (Stage 2 is completed).

Round 3 - Travel phase

Player 1 exhausts Glorfindel, Player 2 exhausts Frodo Baggins to travel to Great Forest Web.

Round 3 - Encounter phase

Nothing happens.

Round 3 - Combat phase

Nothing happens.

Round 3 - Refresh phase

Player 1's Threat = 31
Player 2's Threat = 40. (Control of Gollum remains unchanged)
First player token is passed to Player 2.

Player 2 has better cards overall but Player 1 is the one holding A Test of Will and at this point, all I'm scared of are treacheries.

Round 4 - Resource phase

Player 1 draws Dwarven Tomb, Player 2 draws Gondorian Spearman.

Round 4 - Planning phase

Player 1 activates Steward of Gondor and plays Snowbourn Scout, putting 1 progress token on The Spiders' Ring.

Round 4 - Quest phase

Player 1 plays Sneak Attack putting Gandalf into play and drawing 3 cards (A Test of Will, Miner of the Iron Hills and Ancient Mathom).

Player 1 commits Eowyn, Glorfindel, Gloin (Readying them using Unexpected Courage) and Gandalf.
Player 2 commits Aragorn (Spending 1 resource to ready him) and Frodo Baggins (Using Fast Hitch to ready him).

Ecnounter deck reveals Wood Elf Path and Gollum's Bite (4 damage dealt to Aragorn, Gollum's control goes to Player 1).

Thought about countering it but that's the reason I play Aragorn and Glorfindel.

Willpower of 17 to a threat of 4 = 2 progress tokens are put on Great Forest Web (It is explored) and 11 progress tokens are put on the quest card (Stage 3 is completed).

Gandalf is returned to Player 1's hand (Aragorn gets 1 resource).

Round 4 - Travel phase

Travel to The Spiders' Ring.

Round 4 - Encounter phase

Nothing happens.

Round 4 - Combat phase

Nothing happens.

Round 4 - Refresh phase

Player 1's Threat = 35. (Control of Gollum remains unchanged)
Player 2's Threat = 41.
First player token is passed to Player 1.

Round 5 - Resource phase

Player 1 draws Erebor Hammersmith, Player 2 draws Westfold Horse-Breaker.

Round 5 - Planning phase

Player 1 activates Steward of Gondor and plays Ancient Mathom on The Spiders' Ring. Player 1 plays Miner of the Iron Hills, discarding one Caught in a Web from Gloin and Erebor Hammersmith, returning Ancient Mathom from his discard pile to his hand.

Player 2 plays Rivendell Blade on Legolas and Westfold Horse-Breaker.

Rivendell Blade is another cool new card. Finally, non-Dwarves get some firepower options.

Round 5 - Quest phase

Player 1 commits Eowyn, Glorfindel and Gloin (Both readied using Unexpected Courage).
Player 2 commits Aragorn (Spending 1 resource to ready him) and Frodo Baggins (Readying him using Fast Hitch).

Encounter deck reveals Ungoliant's Spawn (Player 1 counters the When revealed ability with A Test of Will), Mirkwood Bats surging into Goblin Sniper.

Willpower of 13 to a threat of 7 = 1 progress token is put on The Spiders' Ring (It is explored, Ancient Mathom triggers, Player 1 draws Bofur, Miner of the Iron Hills and Dwarven Tomb) and 5 progress tokens are put on the quest card.

Round 5 - Travel phase

Travel to Wood Elf Path.

Player 2 plays Sneak Attack, putting Gandalf in play and dealing 4 damage to Mirkwood Bats, killing them.

Didn't want to face the "Deal 1 damage to everyone in the encounter phase and then again in the combat phase".

Gandalf returns to Player 2's hand, Aragorn gets 1 resource.

Round 5 - Encounter phase

Player 1 engages Ungoliant's Spawn, Player 2 engages Goblin Sniper.

Round 5 - Combat phase

Goblin Sniper engages Player 2.

Snowbourn Scout blocks Goblin Sniper, Shadow card is Attercop, Attercop (No effect). Snowbourn Scout is killed, Aragorn gets 1 resource.
Player 2 plays Feint targeting Ungoliant's Spawn (Shadow card was Woodman's Glade).

Gloin attacks and kills Goblin Sniper.
Player 2 discards Westfold Horse-Breaker to ready Gloin.
Glorfindel+Gloin+Legolas+Miner of the Iron Hills+Erebor Hammersmith attack and kill Ungoliant's Spawn = GAME OVER!

Final score

Player 1's threat = 35 + 0 wounds = 35.
Player 2's threat = 41 + 4 wounds = 45.
4 complete rounds = 40.
-9 VPs.

111

I had very lucky draws there, both from my decks and from the encounter deck but again, it comes down to being ready to face the tough stuff. Threats sure are raising fast with this scenario and the last 3 stages all come with their own quirks.
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Derek Coon
United States
Redwood City
California
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Once again, thank you. I'm curious why you didn't Sneak Attack Gandalf during the Quest phase rather than the Travel phase on the last turn. (It didn't really matter I guess.) Also, what are your thooughts on Rivendell Blade vs. Blade of Gondolin? Gondolin on Legolas increases his "Questing" ability while Rivendell is probably better for combat. In a Quest like return, every travel token can matter.
 
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Marco Poutré
Canada
St-Jean-sur-Richelieu
Quebec
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Yes... I still like 'em 32 years later...
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Re : Gandalf, the only point of playing him at the start of the quest phase would be to use his 4 willpower but I really didn't need willpower at that point so it was best to keep all my options open to make better use of his damage-dealing ability.

I like Blade of Gondolin in most scenarios, as I've commented before and you pointed out, it can improve Legolas's ability to deal with locations or quest stages out of normal order. But Rivendell Blade is nice as well, -2 defense is the same as +2 ATK vs 75% of the enemies, especially the nasty ones. I wouldn't be surprised to play both Blades (Rivendell and Gondolin) from here on.
 
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