Mikhail Kruzhkov
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During our last game there was this situation: I played FP and SP attacked Dale when the North already had its political counter in the second box of the political track. The attack has moved the counter in the third box. Then after the first round of combat I chose to retreat. Can I retreat to Erebor or Woodland Realm, since the Shadow captures Dale and the North is now at war, or at the moment of my retreat the North is not at war (yet), thus my army cannot cross a border of another nation?
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Kristofer Bengtsson
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When retreating, an army may always cross the border of another nation.
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Mikhail Kruzhkov
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Thank you very much, Kristofer, I missed that rule. I'm glad to know in the end that we played correctly, I felt as if I were cheating a little
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James
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Page 31 wrote:
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.


Per above, your opponent has the option of not advancing any of the attacking units and thus not capture the Dale and thus not trigger the North to "Go to War".

I type this mostly in hopes of remembering it if I am ever in the same situation.
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Rob W
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A related question that came up in this weekend's game:

-I attacked Dale
-My son retreated the men of Dale into Thranduil's Woodland Realm
-I attacked the Woodland Realm

Who moves down on the Political Track: Elves only, or Elves and the North?
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Kevin Chapman
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Powhatan
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Both of them do.
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Roy Subs
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Veldrin wrote:
When retreating an army may alwsys cross the border of another nation.


Hi Kristofer, this is not expressly stated in the rules from what I can see. It says that an army may retreat into a "Free" region, so that's completely ambiguous. "Free" could mean:
- an empty region, containing no army.
- a region containing a friendly army.
The definition of Free in itself is very important, but is not defined in the rulebook.
The rules also state that Nations who are not at war, may not move into regions of other nations. That's explicit. It also says that retreating Army's that are not At War *may* move into other Nations borders, but again, this is completely ambiguous, as on retreating, there is the very reasonable argument that:
a) a retreating Army must move into a Free region if possible (depending upon what "Free" even means that is)
b) if there is no region that satisfies a) and if the retreating Army is not "At War", then the Army *may* move across the borders of a Nation if that is the only available path for it to take.

The rules are incredibly ambiguous (myself and a couple of friends all read the rules as per "a non-At-War Nation may retreat across a border if no other route is possible"). Is there somewhere that this is clearly stated please ?
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Kristofer Bengtsson
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On page 30 (retreats) it is stated that a retreating Army must move to a free region.

On page 10 "Free region" is defined as a region free of an enemy Army and/or enemy controlled Settlement.

Page 35 (Entering War, read the "exception" and ensuing example) details that an Army belonging to a nation not "at war" is allowed to retreat across another nation's border.
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Mr. Kickerz
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Exactly. The rule book works, it is just a little awkward at times.

This might help:

A Free region is a region that does not control your opponents army, a settlement (even if it is one with a control place maker over it).

Case:1
I am the Free People and I am retreating from Eastemnet. Now lets say that the Shadow army took control of Westemnet earlier and have a shadow marker there, I could not retreat there. The army attacking me is in Darth Celebrant so I cannot retreat there. There is another shadow army in Folde so I cannot retreat there. However there is no army in the Wester Brown Lands, or in the Wester Emyn Muil so I could retreat there.

Case 2: A nation "Not at War" can retreat across a bordering Nations Lines". Lets say that I am once the Free People. I have units in Dale that were attacked from Shadow Army units from the Vale of Carnen. I am only on political step 1, but I can still now retreat into Erebor (as the dwarves still own it and it has not been taken by the Shadow Army), or to the Woodland realms (as the Shadow has not taken that either). So in this rare case I can cross into a bordering nations Borders when retreating).

Basically it means you can retreat to anywhere that is not a place where another enemy army is, and that you cannot conquer a City, Stronghold, or settlement by retreating.
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