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A New FAQ Is Here!

by on February 28, 2013

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The newest version of the FAQ for LOTR LCG has been released (version 1.4). You can find it here. While I would argue that the last edition of the FAQ (1.3) brought bigger changes, with the game-breaking Zigil Miner being neutered and Beravor constrained, there are still some verrrry interesting changes to be found in this version. I have plenty of thoughts on the contents of this new FAQ, and I would love to hear some of your opinions as well in the comments. In this article, you will find a short summary of the most important changes made, along with my feelings on each piece of errata.

* Feint and Thicket of Spears: Both of these cards have been modified so that they only prevent an enemy from attacking one player, instead of stopping them from attacking completely (although in most cases, this will essentially be the same result). This errata is directed at the popular Hama lockdown method of dealing with Durin’s Bane in the Shadow and Flame quest. For those who have yet to play this quest, basically players could use Hama’s ability to recycle Tactics events to play Feint or Thicket of Spears every turn on the Balrog, who normally attacks all players. Since this prevented it from attacking at all, Durin’s Bane essentially became toothless and the quest became a cakewalk. With this errata’d version of Feint and Thicket of Spears, you can still prevent Durin’s Bane from attacking one player, and thus the lock-down will still work when playing solo, but with multiple players the quest becomes a little bit more challenging. Of course, this errata will now affect any other enemies that are able to attack multiple players during one combat phase as well. We could say that players could simply choose not to use the Hama lockdown against the Balrog if they wanted a challenge, but overall I support this particular piece of errata. (Out of Sight, which is a Spirit card with a similar effect, has been errata’d as well.)

Narvi’s Belt: A small change that prevents players from using Narvi’s Belt to use Baggins resources. This errata totally makes sense, as part of the strategy of the Hobbit quests revolves around managing these special resources, and abusing Narvi’s Belt would undermine this mechanic. I actually never thought of this use until I saw this entry in the FAQ, but this is another change I support.

Nori: Previously, Nori reduced your threat by 1 every time a Dwarf ally entered “play under your control”. This has been errata’d so that now he only reduces your threat by 1 when “you play a Dwarf character from your hand”. This is a subtle difference, but means that you now would trigger the ability for playing Kili from your hand, but not for Fili who was brought into play through Kili’s ability (but not played from hand). Note that Nori’s ability previously triggered for both. This errata also applies to A Very Good Tale, which brings allies into play from your deck but doesn’t count as playing them from your hand. I can see why this change was made, as Dwarf decks are insanely good at pumping out allies through various tricks. Still, in general, as I’ll mention at the end, I prefer errata to be kept to a minimum. No one likes to have cards with outdated text on them, I know I don’t, and that’s why I prefer that only those cards that are truly game-breaking receive errata. I’m not sure if Nori counts. Potentially powerful: yes. But no more so than rockstar cards like Elrond/Vilya, Dain Ironfoot, A Very Good Tale itself, etc. All in all, I could’ve done without this errata.

Thror’s Map: This is a big one, although I’ll admit that I’m deeply biased regarding this card, as it is one of my current favorites. Previously, Thror’s Map could be used during any action window to make any location the active location. With this errata, it now can only be used during the travel phase, which takes away a large measure of its utility. The best application of Thror’s Map has been to move a location out of the staging area right after staging and before quest resolution, thus removing threat, avoiding travel effects, and allowing progress tokens to be placed immediately on that location. It also could be used flexibly to manage active location effects at any time during a round. Now, this is impossible, and the only uses of Thror’s Map will be either to avoid travel effects or to replace an active location with one that is a better strategic choice at a given moment. Given this errata, I find it hard to imagine that this attachment will find its way into my decks anymore, which is a real shame. While it certainly can be a powerful card, and perhaps I even understand the reasoning behind the change, I feel that this errata was not necessary. There is one combination where Thror’s Map can be used in conjunction with Path of Need to basically enable players to perpetually quest without exhausting. Undoubtedly this is overpowered, but this combo is difficult enough to set-up and execute that I don’t think this is a valid reason to issue errata for Thror’s Map (since you can only include 1 copy of Path of Need, the only reliable way to get it into play consistently is Gandalf/Radagast + Word of Command, and to keep it in play you need locations to keep coming up). I hope this was not the motivation for the change, as I don’t think it’s sufficient.

Troll Purse and Troll Key: As a change that everyone was hoping for, I fully support this errata. In the past, if either of these objectives found in the We Must Away, Ere Break of Day quest were discarded, then they would be placed on a Troll enemy. The problem was that if this happened before the Trolls came into play during Stage 2, then there was nowhere for these cards to go. Similarly, the “when revealed” effect placed these items on a Troll, but if there was no Troll, then they would be stuck in limbo. With this errata, they now go to the staging area if there are no Trolls in play, and attach to a Troll when one enters. This allows players to now have a fair chance to get the treasures in this quest. Hooray!

Master of Lore: Ouch. My Lore fanboy heart is broken again by this FAQ. One of my favorite cards, and one of the best cards released in the recent Heirs of Numenor set, has been severely defanged (I know, I know, I said something slightly different about this card in my initial HoN player card review, but my thoughts have changed dramatically since then). The way the card worked originally was that you could exhaust this ally to reduce the cost of playing every Lore card of a certain type for the duration of a phase. This new errata changes that so that only the next card of a certain type receives the discount. I have to say that I strongly disagree with this change. The main reason why this errata was made, in my opinion, was to counter a game-breaking deck combo that a few players have created. I don’t want to spend too much time going into the details here (if you’re really interested, a simple search in the FFG forums will turn it up), but basically Master of Lore, when combined with a few other cards, such as Born Aloft, Erebor Hammersmith, Horn of Gondor and Legacy of Durin, allowed you to draw your entire deck in one turn. This was definitely game-breaking, but there were other ways that FFG could have chosen to counter the combo (like a simple frequency limitation on Born Aloft and/or Legacy of Durin), which would not have had as dramatic an effect as what they did to Master of Lore. I am not sure if I will play the new version as it stands now, which is very unfortunate, as it was the only natural means of resource-generation for the Lore sphere. I am very sympathetic to the position that the designers are in when it comes to this sort of game-breaking combination. Do you issue errata to preserve the integrity of the game, even though it is only a few players that are using it? Or do you ignore it, knowing that in a cooperative game it is not technically harming anyone if people want to experiment in this manner?

* Blocking Wargs: Bring out the ticker tape, cue the band, and bring on the munchkins. Ding dong, Blocking Wargs are dead! Probably the most controversial encounter card contained in the Heirs of Numenor set, Blocking Wargs is a treachery that deals 1 damage to each character committed to the quest. While annoying, this is not what people hated. What earned players’ ire was that it had surge and was shuffled back into the encounter deck if the current quest was a battle or siege. If this wasn’t bad enough, if the last few cards in the deck were Blocking Wargs, they would become a game-breaking infinite loop. I am glad that the designers have decided to take out the recursion clause, and simply reduce it to its “when revealed” effect and surge, which is punishment enough. Is it hypocritical that I am OK with this kind of errata, which benefits players, while being harsh about the changes to Thror’s Map and Master of Lore? Perhaps, but a game-breaking encounter card is far more troublesome, in my opinion, than an overpowered player card, as the former cannot be avoided while the latter can.

Other changes: There are other rules clarifications, not related to specific cards, including finally defining the value of X when not defined by game criteria (in these cases, x equals 0), detailing the order of effects, and more. I encourage you all to go and read the FAQ for yourself, but I won’t go in-depth about them here. These kinds of changes, that don’t modify the text of a card, I’m generally OK with and tend to enhance the gameplay experience for players by providing clarity.

Final Thoughts

To me, there are some important issues at stake here, some tensions that the designers and players of this game have to face, not just in this present FAQ, but in past and future editions as well. I’ll outline these tensions below.

The needs of tournament play vs. The needs of a cooperative game

I didn’t get a chance to mention it yet, but for the first time, FFG has released official tournament rules for LOTR LCG! I think it’s great that they have decided to create something for players who want that kind of experience, and I acknowledge that people come to this game for a variety of reasons. Personally, though, I’m not a fan of the particular tournament format they have devised. In essence, it involves two teams of players competing against each other to see who can complete the same quest successfully and in the shortest amount of time, using a chess clock or similar mechanism to keep track. It is this time aspect that bothers me. Part of the joy of a cooperative game, and this game in particular, is the strategizing that players do amongst themselves, thoughtfully pondering the repercussions of various courses of actions. The time it takes to complete a quest is not, in my opinion, a valid measure of how good a player is or how well a team works together. I could imagine all kinds of ridiculous scenes as players shuffle and play cards at lightning speeds, even doing their best imitation of the Micro Machines guy from those old commercials, talking as fast as humanly possible. Perhaps I’m wrong, and perhaps it will work out fine. Perhaps some might even make the argument that the time criteria simulates the pressure that heroes would be under in real situations, where they couldn’t leisurely discuss their battle strategy as huge trolls lumbered towards them. But as it stands, I’m a bit skeptical, more so because I’m not sure that tournament formats of any kind work well for this game. I can’t think of anything better, and I prefer a cooperative get-together of players more than any alternative, but one idea might be to have teams of players facing off against a set of scenarios with the last team left being the winner. Still, it is hard to account for luck and randomness in a way that assures an equitable field.

Anyway, I am really getting off track here, though. What I really want to discuss is that as this tournament format evolves, there will be an inevitable tension between releasing errata and designing the game to meet the needs of the tournament format vs. playing to the original purely cooperative nature of LOTR LCG. I hope that the designers always prioritize the latter, and compartmentalize the former as much as possible. Tournament play demands certain things, like a strict policing of overpowered cards and guarantees of an equal playing field, that at times can be fundamentally at odds with maintaining the feel and essence of this game that made all of us fall in love with it. I have no interest in playing in LOTR LCG tournaments, and I’m sure others feel the same way, so it would be better if FFG simply made use of tournament restricted lists rather than gutting cards for everyone.

* The “just ignore it” crowd vs. The “we have to follow the official word” crowd

There are some who make the valid point, every time a new FAQ is released, that since this is a cooperative game, we can ignore any errata we want. If you’re having a blast playing at home with the old Zigil Miner, and want to pretend he was never included in the FAQ, who’s going to stop you? Does the official FAQ really matter in the grand scheme of things? Can’t I just keep playing Thror’s Map and Master of Lore as-is? Certainly. I don’t have any good, rational arguments against this line of thinking. The only problem is I’m one of those players who feels like I have to follow the official rulings to the letter. I’m not sure why I feel this way, but I bet I’m not the only one, and so I will rigidly adhere to all of the new errata, even the ones that I don’t like. The other issue is that when you are playing with random people online, or at a game store or event, you will have to negotiate beforehand whether errata will apply or not. With friends this will be a fairly simple issue to resolve and agree upon, but with strangers it may get a bit more tricky, and more than likely, people will want to follow the FAQ.

Keeping the game “living” vs. Minimizing errata

This is a Living Card Game, which means that it is always evolving over time. Not only is this accomplished through constantly expanding the card pool, but also by continually clarifying rules and maintaining game balance through errata. This is why, although I don’t agree with all the changes made, I still am pleased that the game designers are staying on top of developments, to the point that they even included an entry on a quest just released last week! I happened to have a question about one of the spider enemies that is included in the Flies and Spiders scenario that is part of The Hobbit: On the Doorstep and lo and behold, that same question was addressed in the newest FAQ. That, to me, is quite amazing and the changes that were made signal, in my opinion, an intent on the part of the designers to more proactively and expansively address game issues as they emerge. This is generally a positive development. On the other hand, I don’t like the idea of having a bunch of cards with outdated text, and perhaps that is just the collector or obsessive in me, but I want my card collection to be correct and complete. My concern is not so much about having to refer to another document, as the FAQ is still small enough that I can remember the changes, but in time this may become more cumbersome. In general, I really hope that the design team keeps errata to the bare minimum. Only those cards that completely break a scenario or the game in general, and that are used on a widespread basis for that purpose, should be considered. So the old Zigil Miner and Beravor count, in my opinion, but Thror’s Map does not.

 

Of course, at the end of the day, I’m just a blogger and player, and I don’t have to walk the fine line that the designers do. I fully understand how hard it must be to make some of these calls, and it can be a thankless endeavor. Still, there is no doubt judging by the reactions on various forums that this FAQ has already generated its fair share of controversy. The game is healthy, the community is growing, and the quests are getting better over time, in my opinion, so this newest FAQ is not a reason to panic. Rather, the strong feelings it has engendered only speak to the passion and commitment of the player base.

Thoughts, reactions, opinions on the FAQ?

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28 Comments
  1. Great article! With Beorn’s post of the new FAQ and yours it’s really got me thinking…

    I believe the new FAQ (and the old ones too actually) are interesting when you compare them to FFG’s other LCG offerings. All the other LCG’s are competitive and their respective FAQ’s address issues that give players an edge against other players. In LOTR we are battling against a faceless enemy, that of the deck itself. It’s a pure mechanic, and it’s out to get you whether you’re prepared or not. That being said, the FAQ’s for this game are trying to provide clarity and balance to an opponent that can’t speak for itself. But those of us playing the game also play other, usually more competitive, games and it seems we can’t get out of our heads that it’s ok to just chill about some rules.

    I was listening to cardboardoftherings podcast and they were saying they would cheat in the game if its going to make it more enjoyable. That was so refreshing to hear. It was like straight out of a RPG – the GM might fudge a roll to make the game more enjoyable, and therefore the players feel more engaged. But then some players want to be challenged by the mechanic and would feel cheated if a GM did this.
    Only one thing can be said for this: each to their own (and I’m the former)

    As for the tournament rules it strikes me that if we want to get our competition face on then we tend play something else. For example I’m a massive fan of Netrunner for the skill and different play experience each side has. Relatively small decks means it plays fast and hard. But I love Lord of the Rings more because of the comradeship (being an Aussie I’d say mateship) we have in building a band of heroes and facing an opponent that doesn’t actually HAVE a face.

    Just something random I was thinking of – has anyone actually toyed with the idea of a human actually using the encounter deck? Creating an alternative set of rules for using the encounter deck as AN ACTUAL deck could be something worth investigating. Tricky, but hey, Gondor wasn’t built in a day…

    • TalesfromtheCards permalink

      I agree with you and I agree with the CotR folks that people should do whatever they want, including breaking the rules or errata, if it makes the game more enjoyable for them. I have a hard time doing that myself but I think there’s absolutely nothing wrong that approach.

      I think here and there I’ve heard people toy with the idea of a human using the encounter deck, but no one has really tried to flesh out that idea. I think as a fun house-rule or variant, someone could definitely try to make it happen. There would have to be some way to equalize things, as the player controlling the encounter deck could put a lot of hurting on the players by always being able to maximize the pain.

  2. OnkelZorni permalink

    My poor Nori…I loved using Bofur (Redhorn Gate) with him and Dain, +3 Willpower and -1 Threat for just one Resource every turn

    In general I like the erratas, cutting down some very strong or game-breaking combos. What I don’t like is that they tamed my lovely little wargs…seems they lost their theeth.

    • TalesfromtheCards permalink

      I think you’re the only person I’ve ever heard call the Blocking Wargs lovely! More power to you. You could always continue to play with the old version of the Wargs as a kind of extra challenge.

      • OnkelZorni permalink

        No, actually I’m a rule-pedantic. I have to play them the way they are now or I would have the feeling not play the way this game is intended too. I understand that most players cheer for this nerf but I found them so outstanding thematic and enjoyed beeing surrounded (surged) by those wargs cutting off my road and driving me into the arms (or legs and other stuff) of my enemies just to hit me back next round.
        From the mechanic point of view, this decision is absolutly correct, no more infinte-warg-looping (thinking actually of some wargs making loops, quite funny) which end the game leaving no chance for success.

  3. In MtG I never question any rule changes and ‘banned and restricted’ list. I always play how creators dictate. But WotC is a big company with a lot of smart people who’ve been designing MtG for years and have a really, really wide perspective. Basically, they know what they are doing, even though it’s extremely hard with a game that has thousands of cards and even more possible interactions and combos. They also have to think about several formats (constructed and limited).

    WIth FFG and LotR LCG I’m not so sure.The game is still quite young, but I cannot shake that feeling that they could do a better job. I don’t know, hire someone smarter to oversee those changes. Do more playtesting instead of waiting for the community to find a new way of abusing power of new cards and create insane combos.

    With this errata I’ll go with some changes, definitely not each one of them.

    I start to think that I know more about balance of LotR than creators themselves. I for example play with a 45 cards decks, seeing how it makes perfect sense in Netrunner. 50 seems like an afterthought, arbitrary number that didn’t come up as a carefull study of game mechanics. It’s a bit too big and it doesn’t even allow to put 3 copies of every card into deck. MtG decks can have 4 copies and they have a 60 cards minumum. Changing it to 3 copies and not scaling deck size proportionally is strange. And during average MtG game you have more turns, see more cards and generally draw more.

    • ken permalink

      I suspect lotr lcg is designed by a few people or a person used to design boardgames. The designer(s) seem to really don’t understand the power of card draw, cost reduction and tutoring.
      Now we have a bunch of erratas (which is BAD) which does nothing to the fact that there is one deck to rule them all: The Dwarfs. Good luck with the tournaments….
      Still, I think I will personally have a lot of fun with the game, as long as I don’t have to pull out the dwarfs when I get tired of losing 🙂

    • TalesfromtheCards permalink

      Overall, I’m pretty happy with the job that the lead designer and the rest of the design team have done. Sometimes it’s easy to get caught up in the things we don’t like, but we shouldn’t forget how amazing this game is and I’m always especially impressed about how much care is taken to incorporate Tolkien’s lore. I have a hard time imagining another set of designers being knowledgeable and passionate enough about Tolkien to include a whole setting in a place like Pelargir, somewhere that is only known to those who know Middle-Earth.

      There are some concerns I have, as I outlined in the article, but not enough to be pessimistic about the direction of the game. Your point about play-testing is an interesting one, though. I personally don’t know much about how exactly they conduct play-testing for the game. One issue could be that the play-testing is mostly done to test for overall game balance issues, how challenging a scenario is, etc. Perhaps they also need to use those players who are really adept at and interested in creating game-breaking decks and combos and have them work with the new player cards to test if they can devise ways to make things overpowered. Again, I’m not sure if this happens or not, but if it doesn’t, it could be a good way to minimize future errata.

  4. shipprekk permalink

    I’ve had similar feelings to Absurd, as if they were meeting deadlines too quickly and overlooked a few things. Doesn’t change the fact that I love this game, I just find some of this very annoying.

    (1) I hate, hate, hate not being able to just read the card. For that reason I will likely just keep playing most of the cards as-is unless I feel a surge of creativity and print out some proxies with the new text.

    (2) I agree with what you said about what tournament play could do to the game. If it suddenly becomes competitive, so comes the rule lawyering and an added dimension that could confound the fun, cooperative nature of the game. We shall see!

    • TalesfromtheCards permalink

      Agreed, I like the game text to be correct and true. I don’t like the idea of the true text being somewhere else.

  5. Glaurung permalink

    i think all this errata is not really necessary. Just we can have a restricted or ban list for the tournaments. Cose anyway even with all this erratas dwarfs deck will win any tournament anyway.
    Thorin ,Dain decks will crush anything on the way. No any other deck have a chance to be faster an stronger. Yes the last erratas is ok but still far to make game more balanced.

    • TalesfromtheCards permalink

      I agree 100%. If they are worried about tournament balance, then restricted lists are the best way to go because they keep things relatively fair for tournaments while not affecting the broader player base. I share your prediction that there will be very little variety when it comes to what decks people bring to these tournaments. Dwarf decks will be dominant.

  6. I like the FAQ for providing clarifications but the errata should be restricted to cards that are really broken. I agree with shipwrekk that the #1 goal should be to read the cards as-is. If I need to set up a 10-card chain to abuse a card, that seems quite hard to do and, being that it is a co-op game, individuals can make home rules against combos like that. And it seems to me that you could have worked around some of the combos by making other changes (the change to Born Aloft being an example). My concern is that I just don’t understand the changes on some of the other cards. Why change Thror’s Map? That is one that I will hope to ignore, but I am one of those “follow the official word” camp, and it will be hard to play it as-written, since I know I’ll be “cheating”.

    • TalesfromtheCards permalink

      I’m not sure about Thror’s Map. My only guess is that it was either a reaction to the Path of Need/Thror’s Map combo, which as I mentioned in the article, is not consistent enough to be game-breaking, or they simply felt that it was too powerful an effect in the way it reduced threat and managed locations so easily. Strangely enough, even now it is strong in the sense that it completely gets rid of harmful travel effects, except for those locations that are immune to player card effects, which essentially makes a whole part of the game moot. One thing that could be helpful in the future is if FFG is super-transparent about why the changes are being made. I don’t think it does any harm to the game if they flat-out say, “We’re changing Feint because it made the Balrog too easy to deal with”, or “Master of Lore needed to be changed because it could be exploited when combined with these other cards, and we’re worried about tournament balance”. I still wouldn’t agree with all the changes but at least it would stop the guesswork on the part of the players as to the designers’ intentions.

      • Actually, your suggestion would be a great idea. We’re changing “Card X” because it was intended to work one way, everyone is using it another way, and that way is counter to the design. That would be a great explanation to have. I’d especially like to know if the change was because the card has proven to be way more powerful than expected, i.e. Feint on the Balrog, or if they are worried about it from a tournament perspective, i.e. Master of Lore combos. Then you could actually have a “in tournament play, Master of Lore has the following restriction. For non-tournament play, players should be aware that it can be abused as follows….”

  7. legolas18 permalink

    I’m also a “follow the rules” person, so I’ll just have to go with the flow. But Thror’s Map is gone! NO!!! That was one of my favorite cards. I had never used it for the huge combo mentioned above, I just thought it worked well with Legolas. And I had never even thought of using Narvi’s Belt for the Baggins Sphere. Oh well. But great article! Keep up the good work.

    • TalesfromtheCards permalink

      I tend to stay away from any combo that I know to be game-breaking, and I’ve seen from comments and conversations in other places that many, if not most, other players feel the same way. Should FFG police these things or should the player base determine their own use of the cards? This is a big question that will keep popping up.

  8. scwont permalink

    I’m also fine with most of the errata, but a couple of them (like Master of Lore) indeed seem overly heavy-handed. Worse, it’s confirmed one of my fears: that tournament play – or the mere creation of tournament rules, in this case – would lead to a bunch of errata that would negatively impact casual play for those who still want to follow the official rules.

    I can ignore the MoL errata in my own games if you want, but then what if I want to share with the community an interesting decklist that uses it (non-abusively)? Will people start adding disclaimers to their decks, indicating which errata they’re ignoring?

    On the lighter side, I left an OCTGN game in progress on my laptop in the morning where I was using a Thorin-Ori-Nori dwarf deck. A couple of hours later the FAQ update was released. When I resumed in the afternoon I was faced with the unusual dilemma of whether to finish the game using Nori as he was when the game started, or as he now was after the FAQ ruling!

  9. Update on FFG, the designers released a statement that says (in paraphrase) the solo/co-op setting of the game remains the focus of the expansions and cycles, the tournament is completely optional and will not impact how they design or plan the series. http://www.fantasyflightgames.com/edge_news.asp?eidn=3993

    • TalesfromtheCards permalink

      Thanks for posting this, I’m going to link to this on the main page.

  10. If I’m too late for the long expected FAQ party, then it’s because I’ve been in mourning over the errata to my favorite card and blog moniker Master of Lore. Although winning and scoring among the least important reasons that I enjoy this game, I’ve still followed all the rules and FAQs, and always feel unsettled when new changes (or learning about old rules clarifications that I wasn’t following) cast into doubt the integrity of my play experience. Since I started playing in earnest, the most satisfying experience for me has been building my own mono-sphere Lore deck (without tips from the online community) that was able to defeat The Peril at Pelargir. Now with this errata to Master of Lore, I fear that deck has been sunk as it simply will not generate enough resources to have a fighting chance. Reading the widespread disappointment about the Master of Lore errata on your blog and the Hall of Beorn has eased my pain, but because of my habit of rules adherence it’s going to be a challenge for me going forward. The problem is that even if I do make this the first rule that I regularly ignore, I’m not going to feel good about it.

    • squonk76 permalink

      Yep, it’s very disappointing that they nerfed a powerful mono-sphere deckbuilding tool, especially right before a cycle where one of the themes they’re trying to push is mono-sphere decks! The designers could hardly have been happy about that either. It still makes little sense to me unless they had an “oh s***” moment with some interaction between MoL and something in the upcoming cycle, and it was too late for them to change the new card(s) before they went to print.

  11. Eldon permalink

    Tournament rules is t he less time win? really the prize goes for who is the faster players and not the one that have the better strategies

    The tournament rules must use score rules to decide which team wins, also o like to see some type of tournament rules for solo players like me

    Master of lore appear to be a horrible card now, shame.

  12. Shadin permalink

    Coming to this post a little late, but wanted to say I agree with disliking the errata unless it fixes an actual game bug. I know some people feel compelled to play under the law of the designers, but I treat errata in LOTR as I would treat a tournament ban list for another LCG – you can ignore it except in tournament play. I’ll be keeping Master of Lore and Thror’s Map exactly as they are, as I don’t want to see enjoyable cards reduced to uselessness just because a small minority of players found extremely specific methods of breaking the game with them.

    • TalesfromtheCards permalink

      That’s completely fair. Especially in the context of a cooperative game without a real tournament scene, there’s no reason why you can’t just treat the errata as optional if it makes things more fun for you.

  13. sweetnesswhachacha permalink

    FAQs help iron out questions, or clarify rules, but I would agree, keep the errata to a minimum.

    Master of Lore costed 3, and as an ally is inherently fragile. With the errata, you would have to keep him alive for 3 turns (or 4 if you cast him first turn and now have no one cost cards), before he even breaks even on his investment. If most games go maybe 8 turns, you are hoping to net 4 resources, that’s if you played him first turn. So basically now there seems no reason to play him. (To me, could be wrong, I know readying effects ect exist)

    The path of need combo is so fragile and difficult to pay off why make the other change? I get that it’s difficult to design a game especially a living one, but the changes to some of these cards seem like changing then from broken and really great, to basically don’t ever use them.

    But cards like the Elrond Vilya combo still exist? It seems rather arbitrary if you ask me. I still love the game and am happy to play, but some of these changes seem a bit much.

    • sweetnesswhachacha permalink

      Also it is interesting that I have some cards like Zigil Miner, that I could never understand what the hype was about, not seeing amazing combos, but I have a newer copy that has the errata rules right on the card! It wasn’t until I did a quick search in confusion that I saw multiple versions of the card, pre and post errata!

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