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Subject: Third time's the charm! rss

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Mark L
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Congratulations! Although you may have got lucky with the tiles. I've had games where we just seemed to draw event after event after event...

Now you can try starting Sauron closer to the Hobbits. It means (apart from other things) that he gets within 3 spaces of at least one of them much sooner, and it gets pretty tense when you know a bad roll could easily kill your character.

Do you have the FFG Silver Line edition, or one of the earlier ones? If the latter, it's worth trying to find the expansions, as they add quite a lot to the game. Sadly they don't really work with the Silver Line edition, due to different design.
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Mark L
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Yeah, my rulebook suggests 12 for a medium-difficulty game and 10 for a tough one. I think I only tried 10 once and it was horrific. Of course there's no reason you can't start him on 13, or any number really, to adjust the difficulty more precisely. I've actually started him on 13 once, when we couldn't agree on 12 or 15, so we compromised!

sauron

I understand FFG wanted to make some changes to the components to make it cheaper and more compact, but it's a real shame they decided to change things like the card backs and what symbols are used for some things, as it makes the expansions incompatible, or at best only compatible with difficulty.

One (possibly unintentional) rule change from the original is that in the older version the cards from Rivendell and Lothlorien are shuffled and dealt out face down, starting with the ringbearer. The newer version just says to "distribute" the cards, which most people have interpreted to mean you can look at them and deal them out as you see fit. That makes it easier, because you can target cards to whoever needs them most. You might want to try the older rule as a minor way to make the game tougher.

(The older version also says to leave out 4 random cards from each of those locations if there are only 2 players, but I find that 2 players struggle for cards anyway, so I don't do that.)
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Rauli Kettunen
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It's not that bad (sauron @10), I won on my second attempt, with 2-hobbits, playing the pre-Silverline edition, meaning missed out on 4 cards each in Rivendell and Lothlorien.
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Mark L
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Aanlaien wrote:
I remember seeing that "distribute." I assumed they meant handing them out face down at random anyway.

I actually think thaty is what it means; I don't believe they changed the rule deliberately, or they'd have made it clearer (but it's FFG so who knows?). But many people have interpreted it the other way.

Aanlaien wrote:
I couldn't imagine playing against Sauron on a 10! I'd never be able to make it at that rate. I have to get a few more wins under my belt before attempting that.


Dam the Man wrote:
It's not that bad (sauron @10), I won on my second attempt, with 2-hobbits, playing the pre-Silverline edition, meaning missed out on 4 cards each in Rivendell and Lothlorien.

Blimey, either you're really lucky or really good!

Mind you, I haven't tried starting sauron on space 10 for ages and ages; I've been more intent on mixing in different expansion and parts thereof. Guess I should give it another go, just with the base game!

(Edit: it occurs to me that Jared, who only has the Silver line version, may not realise that that emoticon is actually the Sauron piece from the original game!)
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Rauli Kettunen
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xipuloxx wrote:
Blimey, either you're really lucky or really good!


Overall I do have a losing record against the game, mostly down to Battlefields with 2-hobbits taking forever to beat and then Sauron expansion just kicking butt, but in this case, I'd say lucky doesn't really apply (looking over my log for the play). My normal Main Activity line rush strategy didn't go according to plan, drew 8 tiles in Moria, 19 in HD (completed it via the Event track shake surprise ), 13 in SL and 8 tiles drawn in Mordor. Out of those, Moria's over what I'd like, HD and SL very much so (HD is probably the worst board to linger) and Mordor very much so, usually want to be out of there with less than 5 tiles drawn, 3 is normally doable if you only draw Activity tiles. With proper preparations (meaning you don't waste them on pointless side activity lines before), this is how Mordor should go:

"Mordor board was pretty much perfect. Frodo starts, draws Event (sundial), Frodo and Sam take advantage to heal 1. Next draw Travelling. Frodo then play Shadoxfax and Gollum to move Travelling 5 more times (2 die rolls were single dot and discard 2 cards, easy-peasy). Sam next, draws Travelling. Play Theoden and Elven Rope to advance Travelling 4 more spaces (so 11 of 13 so far). Sam rolls discard 2 cards for space 58. Then use Ring, single dot. Sam's ring-toss is single dot. Pippin still had Faramir (2 Travelling) in hand and enough Shields to call Gandalf for Guidance. Sauron never saw the Ring coming!"

So even without draw 2 Travelling tiles, still had at least 4 more Travelling available for the third turn.
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David Damerell
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Aanlaien wrote:
Having those extra cards helped our team turn around and make Mordor look like a preschool play thing. We went through Mordor so fast it was crazy! We didn't even have to use any event tiles!


One slightly unsatisfactory thing about the game is that Mordor is nearly always either a romp or brutal. If you're quick enough you've no use for the life tokens from the other tracks; if you're slow, and need them, you're slowed further collecting them.
 
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Rauli Kettunen
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damerell wrote:
One slightly unsatisfactory thing about the game is that Mordor is nearly always either a romp or brutal. If you're quick enough you've no use for the life tokens from the other tracks;


If you play it fast (or properly as I view it), you won't need them. If you get an Event run, not like you'll be able to get those tokens fast enough anyways for all hobbits, so might as well rush the main line.
 
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David Damerell
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Dam the Man wrote:
If you play it fast (or properly as I view it), you won't need them.


That's kind of my point, yes. Turn up with the right cards and don't have dire Event luck, Mordor's easy. Otherwise, deathmarch. Thematically, I don't think Mordor often being the easiest map on the board, as if Frodo and Sam found dirt bikes just outside Cirith Ungol, is quite right.
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Rauli Kettunen
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Oh, I thought maybe you were saying people take their time collecting the life tokens from the side lines (which they really shouldn't commit many cards even on previous scenarios, even less so in Mordor).
 
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