Mont A.
United States
Carbondale
Illinois
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Hi folks,

I'm curious whether people think that the Revised/2nd Edition has changed the viability of the Gandalf-denial strategy? (Shadow foregoing both Saruman and Witch King, in order to deprive FP of Gandalf the White.)

I'm guessing that it may have even less to recommend it in the 2nd Edition, but I'm not quite sure why I think that....
1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
David Boeren
United States
Marietta
Georgia
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
I haven't played 1st Edition, but because your question doesn't seem to make sense to me as a 2nd Edition player I think that concept no longer exists.

All you need to do to get Gandalf the White in 2nd Edition is:

1. Get him killed (easily accomplished through blocking corruption)
2. Spend a Will of the West die

It does not depend on whether Saruman and Witch King are in play or not.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Ralf Schemmann
Germany
Siegen
NRW
flag msg tools
www.der-ringkrieg.de
badge
www.der-ringkrieg.de
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
David, check your GtW card. It says

".. and any Minion is (or has been in play), ..."

as a prerequisite for bringing him into play.

And to answer the original question: I haven't seen it used at all in (basic) 2ed games yet, and I think it's still not a useful strategy (in addition to being boring).
4 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Jay P

Alexandria
Virginia
msg tools
The second edition tweaks are minor enough that I'm not sure the strategy changes much:

Second edition GtG has a better card draw ability. So a GtW deny strategy leaves FP player with a better GtG.

On the flip side, GtW has a more flexible Ent strategy. So GtW is more powerful in second edition.





3 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
David Boeren
United States
Marietta
Georgia
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Uthoroc wrote:
David, check your GtW card. It says
".. and any Minion is (or has been in play), ..."
as a prerequisite for bringing him into play.


Well, this is embarrassing - I've just been missing that part of his rules entirely! Luckily we usually see Saruman come in on turn 1-2 most of the time (as long as the Shadow player rolls any Muster dice) so I don't think it's affected any games.

So now that I realize this strategy is available, would I use it? It might be worth a try to see how it goes, but I don't know... At a certain point I'm giving up 2 dice to prevent the Free People from getting 1 die. I'd have to relinquish it at that point for sure. It does help block Ent attacks though which is useful, you can make freer use of your Isengard forces.

I think there are situations where I might consider postponing Saruman very temporarily. For instance, I recall a recent game where I was very short on Muster dice early on. I was holding Corsairs of Umbar, but couldn't play it for a while because I wanted to bring Isengard to war, play Saruman, and later spend 2 more to bring the Southrons/Easterlings to war and at some point Sauron.

In this situation, had I known it would also block Gandalf the White, I would have given more thought to doing Southrons/Easterlings FIRST to attack Gondor, and then done Isengard & Saruman second.

But, I don't think I would try to hold this blockade for any real length of time because the point where I'm giving up 2 dice to block 1 comes up pretty quickly in a lot of games.
2 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Will Fogg
Spain
Madrid
Madrid
flag msg tools
badge
mbmbmbmbmb
Well, for me thats a fair exchange in many game situations: 1 die to the Free Peoples are often worth more than 2 dice to Shadow. But it all depends on what cards are you holding and whats the strategy for the game.

I have tried succesfully the Gandalf-the-White denial in a couple of games, though usually it is just a temporary tactic to delay and deny the firsts WoW results the FP get, then get all your minions out at once. Do that the turn the FP has Aragorn in Minas Tirith and just 1 WoW...
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
David Boeren
United States
Marietta
Georgia
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
We ended up seeing a 1 turn Gandalf block last night, after discussing the tactic before playing.

I had just gotten Gandalf killed, and I had a Will of the West die. My opponent had just moved Isengard to war, and had a Muster die left, so I figured he was planning to put Saruman into play.

Instead, he raised some troops, which made me use the WoW on something else. Next turn he brought in Saruman, but I didn't get any Will of the West rolls. By forgoing his die for one turn, he blocked mine for a couple turns. Well, actually more since I also forgot to add the die into my pool for at least one additional turn!

Free People still won though, he left too many conquered territories undefended and we were able to walk one unit in to retake a couple of them.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Chris Young
United States
Antioch
California
flag msg tools
mbmbmbmb
As a full on strategy it actually probably hurts the shadow more than it harms the FP.

However playing the little chess match from turn to turn can work out expecially early. Generally speaking the new GtG is really good so auto killing is less desirable now. In turn with the mandatory eye placement having less shadow dice available means that the game runs longer and the FP can move the ring at a more measured pace reducing the risk of successfull hunts and increasing the chances of making it to Mordor.

The shadow trying to win without minions is simply handicapping yourself.

A FP stuck on 4 dice can still win if they can move the ring steadily if slowly. By shorting your own dice and restricting the number of really useful combat cards you ensure that the FP can have the time to win.
Here are the things you give up:
1 Additional action dice - your action dice can roll useless actions about 1/4 of the time (Over eyes or events really slow you down and restricted card play means events arent always uesfull either)

2 Leadership - A huge difference for combat

3 Card play - A number of extremely useful event card require minions or are significantly enhanced when minions are in play.

Here are what you get

1 No GtW -- but better GtG guiding
2 FP loses action die which he can only get when rolling W anyway
3 No Ents- Which genearly bother orthanc to kill Sauruman - But Orthanc is mostly neutered by no Sauruman anyway.

No really sure even if first edition if GtW denial was a viable game long strategy.


Arragorn Denial is a much more viable and effective strategy between the two.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
GodRob
United States
Culpeper
Virginia
flag msg tools
While primarily used for killing vampires, a wooden stake to the heart is also highly effective against most other opponents.
badge
Everybody wants to be a Game Designer but nobody wants to be a Game Designer.
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
aammondd wrote:
Here are what you get

1 No GtW -- but better GtG guiding




Gandalf denial should only be considered once GtG is sacrificed, right? If he doesn't get killed on the first or second turn, then I don't see the point in holding back minions at all.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Chris Young
United States
Antioch
California
flag msg tools
mbmbmbmb
Agreed

This is generally why I dont even move the FSP until turn 2. I generally attempt to get Gorns die or at least put myself in position to get his die quickly so that I can take the most advantage of the W that is rolled in those following turns. This usually results in the SP having to make the decision on Minions before Gandalf dies.

We have found it a very effective strategy to play for die acquistion first.
1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Mont A.
United States
Carbondale
Illinois
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
aammondd wrote:

Arragorn Denial is a much more viable and effective strategy between the two.

Huh, thanks for the replies folks. I'm learning lots.

What does Aragorn Denial involve? Locking down Dol Amroth, Pelargir, and Minas Tirith before Aragorn can reach them, I'm guessing?
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Jay P

Alexandria
Virginia
msg tools
Typhon wrote:
aammondd wrote:

Arragorn Denial is a much more viable and effective strategy between the two.

Huh, thanks for the replies folks. I'm learning lots.

What does Aragorn Denial involve? Locking down Dol Amroth, Pelargir, and Minas Tirith before Aragorn can reach them, I'm guessing?


In general, it's a Southern strategy. Part of that is denying the crown cities, but even that isn't the end all of the strategy. Crowning isn't a problem if you can lock him in and kill him. And don't forget about the Deadmen card!

From a grand strategy standpoint, you should seldom decide on a deny/delay strategy as a going in position. Deny/delay is situational. It is but one more consideration SP must factor when deciding what to do. SP should NOT be focused on stopping Aragorn and GtW promotions without regard to other opportunities. Board position. Cards in hand. Action dice roll.

 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
David Boeren
United States
Marietta
Georgia
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Aragorn hasn't had much success in our games, as we tend to hit Gondor as an early target most of the time. So, he's usually not split off to go for it. But, I'm sure the pendulum will swing back the other way sometime.

I agree w/ PapaGamer - the current situation and cards take precedence over pre-made plans.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Damon Asher
United States
Jefferson
MA
flag msg tools
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
I think temporary Gandalf denial can work if Gandalf the Gray dies in the first turn. Then, I might wait until the FP has a turn where they have rolled no wills to bring in some minions, so I get a free turn with them. This is especially sweet if you have the card that lets you discard Will of the West dice. If you can force the FP to have to do something other than bring in Gandalf with their first die that turn, you can then wipe out their Will of the Wests and deny Gandalf for another full turn. This is triply sweet if you suspect that the FP is trying to hold onto some early Ent cards.

I am really liking the second edition tweaks, so I am playing that version now, but I am hopeful that they will bring back the Balrog in the new expansion. He lets the SP get a die without enabling Gandalf the White, so he makes Gandalf denial all the more feasible.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Front Page | Welcome | Contact | Privacy Policy | Terms of Service | Advertise | Support BGG | Feeds RSS
Geekdo, BoardGameGeek, the Geekdo logo, and the BoardGameGeek logo are trademarks of BoardGameGeek, LLC.