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Leadership Hero Poll Results

by on May 24, 2013

With 155 people voting, the poll for favorite Leadership hero has concluded. This time around there was a close race between Aragorn and Dain Ironfoot. The future King of Gondor captured the top spot with 27.1% of the vote. Despite his high threat cost of 12 and the fact that he was one of the original Core Set heroes, Leadership Aragorn still seems to be quite popular among players. I still use him quite a bit myself, as there is much to love about the son of Arathorn. His ability to quest and then ready, thus gaining two actions per turn for just one resource and without the need of attachments, is continually useful. Even better, the designers have seen fit to provide a whole array of toys for Aragorn, including the Sword that was Broken, Celebrian’s Stone, and the recently released Ring of Barahir, all of which not only give him extra abilities, but also give him access to additional spheres. While Lore Aragorn can also make use of these attachments, the Leadership version has natural access to two of them (Sword that was Broken and Celebrian’s Stone) as they come from the Leadership sphere themselves. Finally, Aragorn has well balanced stats that allow him to participate ably in questing, attack, and defense.

Coming in at the runner-up spot is Dain Ironfoot, with 22.58% of the vote. There is no secret behind the popularity of Dain, as he remains one of the most powerful heroes in the game. He is the lynchpin of Dwarven synergy, can serve as a powerful defender, and it feels oh-so-thematic when you drop King Under the Mountain onto him.

Theodred came in third with 14.19%, another respectable showing for a Core Set hero. Despite his modest stats, Theodred finds his way onto tables for a few different reasons. Most obviously, he provides one extra resource per turn. Not only that, but the resource is quite flexible, in that it can be granted to another hero, or to whatever sphere you like, with the caveat that it must be placed on a hero that has been committed to the quest. Another possible reason for his popularity is his relatively low threat cost, which allows him to find a place in a wide variety of decks. He is particularly suited as a partner for a hero or deck type that requires consistent resources to function (thus the classic Theodred-Leadership Aragorn partnership).

The rest of the results looked like this:

4th: Prince Imrahil – 9.03%

5th: Thorin Oakenshield – 7.74%

6th: Boromir – 6.45%

7th: Elrohir – 3.87%

8th: Hirluin the Fair – 3.87%

9th: Gloin – 3.23%

10th: Balin – 1.94%

As for the heroes that didn’t fare so well, Gloin is a notable example of a Core hero that hasn’t aged well. While the “Coin Gloin” perpetual healing resource machine is still a perfectly viable deck type, the opening up of other options for resource generation has dramatically lessened his popularity. Hirluin the Fair is too new to really have a fighting chance in this poll, and it’ll be interesting to see how he places in a future poll. Balin comes in at dead last, which could be attributed to his relative newness as well, but is perhaps an unfair reflection of his usefulness. At a relatively low threat cost for a Leadership hero, with an immensely useful and consistent ability (cancelling shadows for the cost of 1 resource, with the caveat that you have to replace it with another shadow), and able to benefit from Dwarven synergy, Balin should not be underestimated. However, someone had to come in last, and unfortunately it was Bilbo’s BFF who suffered that fate.

Well that’s that, it’s now time to vote for your favorite Spirit hero!

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From → Poll Results

12 Comments
  1. It’s official, Balin and Gloin are going in the red-headed stepchildren deck! I’m going to make one of them King Under the Mountain and give the other Self Preservation; I think that this deck is going to be awesome.

    • TalesfromtheCards permalink

      Sounds good! Actually, both Balin and Gloin have worked well for me against Lake-town. They may not win Middle-Earth Idol, but they can take on a dragon!

  2. legolas18 permalink

    Well, it looks from the recent poll results that Spirfindel is already placing in first. I expect he will come in first most definitely, and Dwalin will most likely go for last.

    • TalesfromtheCards permalink

      I would be absolutely shocked if Spirfindel didn’t completely dominate this poll. And I can’t really argue with that favoritism either.

  3. Thaddeus permalink

    There’s a lot I like about both Balin and Gloin, but Gloin really needs various attachments or allies to really be worth playing, while the best heroes have an ability that is always available or especially easy to exploit.
    I’ve made a lot of decks with Prince Imrihil (hanging out with Rohan or eagles in particular), but I never really got the utility out of him that I wanted. Too often when he did ready, it would be too late to be of any use. I suppose he’d pair well with that Dwarf that comes in and out of play during questing.
    I voted for Elrohir as he’s actually one I use quite a lot and he has such a great ability. Unfortunately, I like him a lot more than Elladan (readying after defending > readying after attacking) and Elrohir always has to bring his tactically minded brother along. BTW, the other sibling in this family pairs spectacularly well with Elrohir.

    • Tiandes permalink

      Elrohir would have been so amazing with the sentinel keyword…

      At least you can put Dunedain signal on him or like you say matching him with his sister Arwen. 4 def and sentinel… wow!

      Anyway, best use for both brothers is in separate decks, playing multi or two-handed.

      I love to play Elladan+Legolas, meaning you can easily put 2 quest token on the quest each turn!

      • TalesfromtheCards permalink

        I think Elladan + Elrohir is a fairly underrated combination, especially with Arwen along for the trip. Since their abilities are so resource-intensive, it makes sense to load them up with attachments, and not focus as much on allies, building them into the uber-hero ranger badasses they are supposed to be.

        • Thaddeus permalink

          That’s what I’ve been playing lately and it rocks. In a four person game last night Elrohir was a sentinel with 6 defense and able to block anything for anyone at the table.
          Unfortunately, they’re not so great against Escape from Dol Guldur or Shadow & Flame.

  4. legolas18 permalink

    If you could fit them into secrecy decks, at least at the beginning of the game, they might have even more potential since they could possibly get a Resourceful. That would pair very well with their ability. Too bad they’re pretty high threat.

  5. you need to do these polls again. Especially since you appear to have slacking off on the polls, as shown by the fact that hero defense has 60% of the vote and that that poll has been running for months on end.

    • TalesfromtheCards permalink

      I’ve definitely been slacking off with the polls. There’s honestly so much on my plate these days that the polls tend to fall pretty low on the priority list, even though I do enjoy seeing the results. It will be nice to do these polls again though, so thanks for the suggestion!

  6. sweetnesswhachacha permalink

    I’m surprised Elrohir placed so high. I tried the twins but they are so fragile, if one is killed it creates 2 useless heroes, or just split up like in foundations of stone. Balin might be kind of a waste in the latest quests (numenor) because there are just so many awful shadow effects, but his ability seems evergreen.

    Thanks I always find polls like this interesting !

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