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Create A Unique Deck Contest!

by on July 26, 2013

TftC readers, I hope you are enjoying a glorious Friday. This week has not seen as much content as normal for this blog, but rest assured that I have a couple of in-depth pieces in the works that require a bit more time and should see the light of day next week. However, today I do want to announce the next contest here at Tales from the Cards. Last time around, I challenged readers to create a custom Ent card, with the winner receiving their very own copy of The Druadan Forest Adventure Pack. This time around, I am offering the opportunity to win a copy of the Encounter at Amon Dîn!

However, this contest will be a little different. Rather than creating a custom card, I am challenging readers to build their own unique deck! The winner will not be the deck that is the most powerful, so leave your generic Outlands and Dwarf decks at home (creative versions of those types are welcome, however). Rather, the victor will be the one who creates the most entertaining, innovative, and creative deck type. Each entry will be judged based on themefun factor, and creativity. Decks must follow the rules for building a “tournament legal” deck: 50 cards minimum and maximum 3 copies of each card. The deadline for submitting your deck to or in the comments below is next Friday, August 2nd. Please include at least a couple of sentences describing the idea for your deck to help us understand your thought process. Happy building!

From → News

  1. Casey permalink

    An Arrow to the Knee!

    Heroes (3)
    Bard the Bowman (OtD) x1
    Legolas (Core) x1
    Hirluin the Fair (TSF) x1

    Allies (15)
    Trollshaw Scout (FoS) x3
    Horseback Archer (Core) x3
    Silverlode Archer (Core) x3
    Dunedain Wanderer (RtR) x3
    Gandalf (Core) x3

    Attachments (14)
    Black Arrow (OtD) x1
    Great Yew Bow (OtD) x3
    Keeping Count (TRG) x3
    Rivendell Bow (TWitW) x3
    Song of Kings (THFG) x2
    Song of Battle (TDM) x2

    Events (21)
    Feint (Core) x3
    Hands Upon the Bow (SaF) x3
    Rain of Arrows (Core) x3
    Straight Shot (OtD) x3
    Unseen Strike (TRG) x2
    Grave Cairn (TWitW) x2
    Ever Vigilant (Core) x3
    Quick Strike (Core) x2

    This deck is all about dealing some harsh damage with bows and arrows. “Great Yew Bow” and “Hands Upon the Bow” allow these ranged heroes to pick off enemies as soon as they appear on the battlefield. Inevitably, however, some Orcs and Goblins will make it past this first attack, and in that case, through the use of “Feint” and “Rain of Arrows,” these expert bowmen can stop them in their tracks and deal devastation at close range.

    Additional archers will arrive from all over Middle-earth to form ranks with the heroes as their bows sing. Gandalf also makes an appearance to allow for faster card draw in order to achieve maximum ranged damage to oncoming foes. Finally, what’s archery without a little competition? “Keeping Count” comes into play in order for the heroes to challenge each other to beat their kill count.

    I hope you enjoy my deck idea! It may be a little unbalanced to use as an actual, in-game deck, but my goal in designing it was to use as much “Ranged” keyword cards as possible to create a unique and potent support deck that could dish out some crazy damage from afar.

    • TalesfromtheCards permalink

      Thanks for entering! Casey has thrown down the gauntlet, everybody!

  2. Traekos77 permalink

    The Wealthy Bachelors

    Heroes (3)
    Theodred (Core) x1
    Boromir (TDM) x1
    Aragorn (TWitW) x1

    Allies (10)
    Gandalf (Core) x3
    Bofur (OHUH) x2
    Erebor Hammersmith (Core) x3
    Master of the Forge (SaF) x2

    Attachments (30)
    Cram (OHUH) x3
    Celebrian’s Stone (Core) x3
    Steward of Gondor (Core) x3
    Sword that was Broken (TWitW) x3
    Blade of Gondolin (Core) x2
    Gondorian Shield (TSF) x2
    Horn of Gondor (Core) x1
    Rivendell Bow (TWitW) x1
    Spear of the Citadel (HoN) x2
    Citadel Plate (Core) x2
    Miruvor (SaF) x2
    Ring of Barahir (TSF) x1
    Unexpected Courage (Core) x2
    Dark Knowledge (Core) x1
    Thror’s Map (OHUH) x1
    A Burning Brand (CatC) x1

    Events (10)
    A Good Harvest (TSF) x2
    Foe-hammer (OHUH) x3
    Goblin-cleaver (OHUH) x3
    Straight Shot (OtD) x2

    Even before Frodo inherited the ring, Aragorn accepted his birthright and became king of men. There was some initial resistance from Gondor and Rohan but that ended when Aragorn met Theodred and Boromir. The three became instant friends and renowned bachelors, wandering the lands having fun and being irresponsible in thought and act; they truly brought out the worst in each other. Aragorn was the womanizer of the group with girlfriends and groupies in every town; when Aragorn insisted on an “open” relationship, Arwen left him in disgust. Theodred indulged himself at each stop, drinking and eating to excess (but never paying); he amused himself by trying to outdrink his elderly squire, Bofur. Boromir got into bar fights and cage matches everywhere he went; he even partook in the local underground scenes taking elicit herbs and acquiring dark knowledge via his multitude of perversions. The three had endless fun and showed their wealth by bringing along artifacts and treasures from their nations.

    When the council met to decide on the fate of the ring, Legolas and Gimli did not attend; they refused to be included once they found out that Aragorn and his legendary misfit “brothers” were attending. The open spot was filled by the fourth bachelor of men, Hirluin the Fair. Hirluin was not wealthy like the others but was charismatic and loved, his entourage of allies followed him everywhere he went. When the hobbits were rescued in Bree, it had been Hirluin rather than Aragorn (who was off wooing Arwen’s cousin).

    The Fellowship Roster (in this alternate reality story)
    4 Hobbits: Frodo, Sam, Merry and Pippin.
    4 Human Bachelors: Aragorn, Theodred, Boromir and Hirluin the Fair.

    The deck composition represents the story told above. The three have great wealth but aside from their dwarf and elf servants that carry and maintain their plethora of fantastic equipment, travel alone. Gandalf is included because he is seeking to mentor and reform the three but has a low tolerance for fools (i.e. why he only stays around for a round before departing). The events represent their flair and skill with weaponry and that they take what they want from the towns they visit (i.e. the Tactics events and A Good Harvest respectively).

    In terms of actual game play, the above deck obviously has some challenges (ex. lack of initial questing power and very few allies) but is actually viable. Aragorn and Boromir are powerful and the equipment options are plentiful. An obvious difficulty is that many items are restricted, I recommend an outlay like the following …

    Theodred: Citadel Plate x2
    Boromir: Gondorian Shield & Spear of the Citadel
    Aragorn: Celebrian’s Stone & Blade of Gondolin

    The key to unlocking the strengths of this deck are the following …
    1. Aragorn’s artifacts, notably Celebrian’s Stone to unlock the Spirit equipment.
    2. Equipping weapons, to allow usage of the Tactics events.
    3. Boromir’s inherent ability to ready himself. This is very useful and immediately available; especially wonderful because of Aragorn’s ability to reset Threat.
    4. Cram + Erebor Hammersmith, to allow readying before Miruvor and Unexpected Courage become available.

    I’d mulligan for Celebrian’s Stone and hopefully end up with Gondorian Shield as well. The allies, once summoned, also aid in finding and retrieving equipment.

    As is always the case, a complimentary deck or two is always of help. An Outlands deck fits very well for this purpose since it supplies allies and questing power, along with fitting the story as told above. Another option is a “Responsible Daughters” deck composed of Eowyn, Eleanor and Beravor; these three assist/support the irresponsible bachelors by being better prepared and balanced in their approach (and hoping to preserve the honor and pride of their homelands).

    • TalesfromtheCards permalink

      This one had me giggling a bit, nice entry!

  3. Sinamil permalink

    The Lone Ranger

    Aragorn (Lore)

    Allies (12)
    3 Master of the Forge
    3 Erebor Hammersmith
    3 Erebor Record Keeper
    3 Gandalf (Core)

    Attachments (31)
    1 A Burning Brand
    3 Celebrian’s Stone
    3 Cram
    2 Dunedain Mark
    2 Dunedain Warning
    1 Protector of Lorien
    3 Ranger Spikes
    3 Resourceful
    2 Ring of Barahir
    3 Song of Kings
    3 Steward of Gondor
    2 Sword that was Broken
    3 Unexpected Courage

    Events (7)
    2 A Good Harvest
    2 A Test of Will
    3 Daeron’s Runes

    So much fun! I have always liked how the designer of the game managed to make two Aragorn versions which melded the lore of the books and mechanics of the game so well. I have been working on this deck since the game launched and it really shines now with A Good Harvest. Although it is capable of winning solo, thanks to Aragorn’s reset ability, this deck is much more fun with a partner. Seeing Strider with Steward of Gondor, Celebrian’s Stone and Sword that was Broken is very satisfying. Hope others enjoy the deck!

    • TalesfromtheCards permalink

      Thanks for the entry! I’ll have to try out one of these newfangled 1 or 2 hero decks one of these days.

  4. Landroval permalink

    damn – beat me to it with the archery deck!

    I’ll have to settle for this:



    3 x Hasty Stroke
    3 x Kazhad Khazad
    3 x Goblin Cleaver
    3 x Dwarrowdelf Axe
    2 x Dwarven Axe
    2 x Citadel Plate
    3 x Vassal of the Windlord
    2 x Bofur
    2 x Ring Mail
    2 x Boots from Erebror
    3 x Erebror Battle Master
    3 x Dwarven Axehand
    3 x Veteran of Nanduhirion
    3 x Foe hammer
    2 x Radagast
    3 x Eagles of the Misty Mountains
    3 x Trained for War
    3 x Support of the Eagles
    2 x Landroval

    When you absolutely, positively, need to kill every single engaged enemy with 10+ hp… except no substitute.

    • TalesfromtheCards permalink

      Hehe, Mega-deth. Be interesting to try this against the new Nightmare version of Conflict at the Carrock. Thanks for the entry!

  5. Deck Name: “TRA-LA-LA-LALLY!” aka “Rivendell Sing-along Fun Time”
    Designer: Mike K

    Here’s a deck built around Love of Tales, Harbor Master, and Master of the Forge to make a fun and thematic mono-Lore powerhouse.

    This is a Hall of Fire reunion with Elrond, Bifur, and Bilbo all sharing songs and stories while Elrond becomes a superhero. I’ve been playing it against Road to Rivendell for some lovely thematic fun, but “Tra-la-la-lally!” even defeated The Siege of Cair Andros with some good early draws.

    As a self-professed wannabe “master of lore”, I could geek out longer but instead, without further ado, let’s get going down to the valley, ha ha!

    HERO (3)
    •Elrond (SaF) x1
    •Bifur (KD) x1
    •Bilbo Baggins (THFG) x1

    Love of Tales (TLD) x3
    Song of Travel (THoEM) x3
    Song of Kings (THFG) x3
    Song of Battle (TDM) x1
    Song of Eärendil (RtR) x2
    Song of Mocking (TDM) x1
    Unexpected Courage (Core) x3
    Self Preservation (Core) x1
    Dúnedain Mark (THfG) x3
    A Burning Brand (CatC) x2
    Rivendell Blade (RtR) x2
    •Vilya (SaF) x1
    •Light of Valinor (FoS) x1
    Expert Treasure-hunter (OtD) x1

    ALLY (19)
    •Gandalf (Core) x3
    Rivendell Minstrel (THFG) x2
    Harbor Master (TDF) x3
    Master of the Forge (SaF) x3
    Mirkwood Runner (RtM) x3
    Silvan Refugee (TDF) x1
    Imladris Stargazer (FoS) x1
    Northern Tracker (Core) x1
    •Erestor (TLD) x1
    •Gildor Inglorion (THoEM) x1

    EVENT (14)
    Durin’s Song (KD) x3
    Mithrandir’s Advice (TSF) x3
    Daeron’s Runes (FoS) x3
    Peace, and Thought (SaF) x1
    A Watchful Peace (HON) x1
    Sneak Attack (Core) x3

    Some highlights of my playtests:
    • Elrond with 12 attachments (Light of Valinor, Rivendell Blade, 3x Dúnedain Mark, 2x Unexpected Courage, Vilya, and Song of Kings, Battle, Travel, and Eärendil respectively)
    • Harbor Master defending for 11 with A Burning Brand (3 song plays with 3 Love of Tales + Bifur’s action + objective Arwen’s reponse)
    • Completely drawing through the 60 card deck!

    If you haven’t played Road to Rivendell in while and you like thematic play, I seriously suggest trying out this deck as Arwen Undómiel’s response makes it more powerful and more thematic at the same time. Elvish singing is not a thing to miss!

    • TalesfromtheCards permalink

      Thanks for the entry! I’m definitely going to try this deck out.

  6. Thorongil Deck

    Aragorn II went by many names. In Rivendell he was Estel because he was the hope of his people. In Bree he was Strider due to his long gait, and at the close of the Third Age he was Elessar, the Elfstone. But from T.A. 2957-2980, he was known throughout Gondor as Thorongil, the Eagle of the Star. He rode with Thengel, Theoden’s father, in Rohan for a time, and served under Steward Ecthelion II of Gondor with a star embroidered on his cloak. During this time, he was beloved of the people of Minas Tirith, which caused resentment on the part of Denethor II, the steward’s son.

    This deck is intended to represent Aragorn’s time serving in Gondor. From his childhood in Rivendell, he brings with him the Ring of Barahir and the broken sword Narsil, both of which he keeps in secret in his belongings. He also has brought his skills as a Ranger (Dunedain Mark) and two minstrels, who record his deeds for posterity. From his time in Rohan he brings a small contingent of Snowbourn Scouts. Most importantly, he carries in his mind Elrond’s Counsel, and in his heart he carries the memories of Arwen, his one true love.

    Rallying around the future king is a vast array of Gondorian soldiers and nobles to aid in the fight against evil.

    For an added thematic challenge, Denethor may not exhaust to take the same type of action as Aragorn or Gandalf. Thus, if Aragorn is questing, Denethor must do something else that round, etc. This represents young Denethor’s growing resentment of Thorongil and the wizard Mithrandir. Give yourself a pat on the back if Denethor ends up with the Horn of Gondor because he is the steward’s eldest (and only!) son and Aragorn gets Steward of Gondor to represent the trust Ecthelion has placed in him.

    This is a solo deck created for thematic purposes, though it plays quite well. Certain artifacts, such as Celebrian’s Stone, are not included because they were not in Aragorn’s possession at this point in his life, and certain characters do not make an appearance because they were not born yet (e.g. Faramir). Eleanor is included because we frankly have no idea when she was born, so I felt free to use her! Many theme-appropriate changes may be made based on the quest. For instance, young Gleowine for extra card draw, Northern Trackers from the Dunedain for location management, the Lore of Imladris for healing, or any non-unique Gondor or Outlands cards for various purposes.

    For more information about this time in Aragorn’s life, please see the appendices of the Lord of the Rings, “Gondor and the Heris of Anarion,” “The Tale of Aragorn and Arwen,” and “The Tale of Years”.

    Heroes (3)
    Aragorn (Core) x1
    Denethor (Core) x1
    Eleanor (Core) x1

    Allies (24)
    Arwen Undomiel (TWitW) x2
    Defender of Rammas (HON) x2
    Envoy of Pelargir (HON) x3
    Errand-rider (HON) x2
    Gandalf (Core) x2
    Gondorian Spearman (Core) x2
    Guard of the Citadel (Core) x3
    Rivendell Minstrel (THFG) x2
    Snowbourn Scout (Core) x3
    Warden of Healing (TLD) x3

    Attachments (12)
    Dunedain Mark (THfG) x3
    Horn of Gondor (Core) x2
    Ring of Barahir (TSF) x2
    Song of Battle (TDM) x1
    Steward of Gondor (Core) x2
    Sword that was Broken (TWitW) x2

    Events (16)
    Daeron’s Runes (FoS) x3
    Elrond’s Counsel (TWitW) x3
    For Gondor! (Core) x2
    Hasty Stroke (Core) x3
    Gondorian Discipline (EaAD) x2
    Sneak Attack (Core) x3

    Starting threat = 27

    Cards in deck: 52

    Leadership cards: 20 (avg. cost = 1.6 resources)
    Lore cards: 8 (avg. cost = 1.5 resources)
    Neutral cards: 6 (avg. cost = (avg. cost = 2.8 resources)
    Spirit cards: 10 (avg. cost = (avg. cost = 0.9 resources)
    Tactics cards: 8 (avg. cost = (avg. cost = 1.3 resources)

    • Casey permalink

      I really like that you made the stipulation that Denethor must perform a different action each turn than Aragorn or Gandalf. After all, he is no wizard’s pupil!

      Personally, I don’t care for or use any of the made-up characters in this game (such as Eleanor.) I don’t really know why I have this hangup, but I find some of the greatest enjoyment out of making themed decks from different parts of the novels. I just finished a “Grey Company” deck featuring Aragorn, Elladan, and Elrohir as well as an assortment of Dunedain allies and attachments.

      Anyways, great job – this is my favorite one so far for this contest!

    • Agreed with Casey! Fantastic work and you get my vote. I love the lore about Thorongil, your thematic strategy and statistical breakdown. Nicely done!


    Hero (3)
    Beorn (OHaUH) x1
    Hama (TLD) x1
    Eowyn (Core) x1

    Ally (35)
    Radagast (AJtR) x2
    Descendant of Thorondor (THoEM) x3
    Eagles of the Misty Mountains (RtM) x3
    Landroval (AJtR) x1
    Vassal of the Windlord (TDM) x3
    Winged Guardian (THfG) x3
    Elfhelm (TDM) x1
    Eomund (CatC) x1
    Escort from Edoras (AJtR) x3
    Rider of the Mark (RtR) x3
    The Riddermark’s Finest (THoEM) x3
    West Road Traveller (RtM) x3
    Westfold Horse-Breaker (THfG) x3
    Beorning Beekeeper (CatC) x3

    Attachment (3)
    Support of the Eagles (RtM) x1
    Horn of Gondor (Core) x2

    Event (12)
    The Eagles Are Coming! (THfG) x3
    Feint (Core) x3
    Meneldor’s Flight (THoEM) x2
    To the Eyrie (AJtR) x2
    Astonishing Speed (RtM) x2

    Eagles, horses, bears, and bees. What better way to kill some wild wargs, sneaking spiders, or monstrous mumakil, than to fight animal with animal. This deck focuses on both questing and attacking with plenty of allies and Feint to aid in defending. Horn of Gondor provides resources, while The Eagle’s are Coming can help thin the deck really quick to help with card draw. Use Hama to put The Eagle’s are Coming and Feint back in your hand. Fell beasts and crebain beware. Now only if there was a Bill the Pony or Fatty Lumpkin card.

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