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Dwarrowdelf Campaign: The Redhorn Gate

by on September 17, 2014

 redhorngate

Several weeks ago, I introduced the idea of a modified Campaign Mode focused around a single cycle. I eventually settled on the Dwarrowdelf cycle, a set of rules, and a deck based on a trait/type voted on by TftC readers. This Dwarven miner deck was outlined in the second article of the Dwarrowdelf Campaign series, and its first test is against The Redhorn Gate. This scenario, the first of the Dwarrowdelf cycle, is all about willpower, questing, and avoiding the dangers of the third quest stage, which discards any character with 0 willpower. Since these are older scenarios with established strategies, I am not going to create separate strategy sections. Rather, each article will focus on just the play experience and story itself, with any strategy considerations discussed as issues come up during the quest. Read on as our Dwarven companions begin their journey.

Over the Freezing Mountains

I made one small change to my deck before beginning the campaign, realizing that I had foolishly left out any condition attachment cancellation. This could be potentially disastrous against The Redhorn Gate, as Freezing Cold will instantly take any of my heroes down to 0 willpower, which means instant death during quest stage 3. Obviously, this is unacceptable in a campaign mode where hero death is permanent, so I’ve swapped out 2 copies of Erebor Record Keeper for 2 copies of Miner of the Iron Hills to get rid of Freezing Cold before stage 3. With that little bit of business out of the way, it’s time for our tale to begin!

Freezing-Cold

Text in green indicates story text based on my interpretation of what gameplay occurrences represent.

Set-up

A passing wanderer in this lonely night might have noticed the three figures huddled together in the shadows of the Misty Mountains. A warm fire crackled between them, but it was fighting a fierce battle against the chill air. Weathered old traveling cloaks covered the frames of the three, and they spoke in gruff voices rich with experience and familiarity. The year was pushing dangerously close to winter and so passing wanderers were few and far between, and no one was there in truth to notice these travelers from Erebor. Only the piercing cry of a crow gave any hint that these three Dwarves were not the only souls in all the wild lands around them.

“I’m pleased to see that you can still get a good fire going, Gloin” Nori remarked. “I was worried too many comfortable years in Erebor might have made you soft!”

“If so, then you’re as soft as me,” Gloin retorted.

“It’s uncommonly cold for this time of  year,” said Bifur. “I don’t like this chill. Something’s wrong and I can feel it.”

As if to answer Bifur’s words, a shriek rent the air. The three paused and locked eyes. For these veterans of battle, the cry was the unmistakable last utterance of a dying man. Without words, they jumped to their feet in unison and rushed to the sound, which seemed to have come from the direction of a small group of trees. Crashing through the underbrush, they emerged in a small clearing to find a scene of carnage. Several bodies lay strewn on the ground. A few of them were Elves, their cloaks torn and bloody. Many of them were clearly orcs, their cruel faces now bereft of life. The only living being, the only survivor, stood facing the stunned Dwarves, a small dagger held in her hand.

“Do you need help?” Bifur asked gently, finally breaking the silence. It was a bit of an odd question for many reasons, but the Elf simply nodded her head, clearly shaken by more than just the experience. The ghosts of some past evil flickered in her eyes. Bifur, like all Dwarves, recognized it instantly, as he knew a thing or two about having a heart troubled by the past.

They made for an odd party, the three old Dwarves and the youthful Elven maiden, who was in truth older than all of them combined. Arwen Undomiel was her name, and she had explained to the Dwarves that she was returning to her home and father in Rivendell. Her and her escort had been waylaid by a large group of orcs, and after a fierce battle, she had emerged as the only survivor. Now, she needed to continue the journey home, but doing so alone with orcs about seemed foolhardy at best. As the Dwarves were traveling west on business to the Blue Mountains, they agreed to travel with her to Rivendell.

“I still don’t see why we can’t travel through Moria,” Nori grumbled. “Balin is there, and we can see how the colony is faring.”

“I thank you all for your company,” Arwen replied. “But I must insist that we not travel that road. There are dark things in the deep, and we would do well to avoid any more darkness on the road ahead.”

Gloin looked at her thoughtfully before speaking.

“I’d like to see Balin, too,” Gloin said gruffly. “But we committed to the Pass already, and we shall stay that course.”

“We can visit on the way back,” Bifur said to Nori, with a pat on his shoulder. Nori simply sighed wistfully and followed the others.

* Note: Anytime during combat that I don’t mention the shadow card, it means that there was no effect.

PLANNING (Starting Threat – 25)

Heroes: Nori, Gloin, Bifur

Starting Hand: Longbeard Elder, A Burning Brand, A Test of Will, Hardy Leadership, Dori, Erebor Hammersmith

Mulligan: Expert Treasure-hunter, Hidden Cache, Legacy of Durin, Zigil Miner, To Me! O My Kinsfolk!, Hardy Leadership

Thoughts: The first hand was decent, with A Test of Will and a couple of useful Dwarven allies. However, I’m really looking to get Legacy of Durin in my opening hand to make sure that the Dwarven machine is in full effect from the very start. The mulligan turns out well, and I draw both Legacy and Expert Treasure-hunter, which means that card draw should not be an issue. I also have at least one useful ally to start with, although I’m not too happy to draw Hidden Cache rather than discard it.

Encounter Deck Set-up

Caradhras

1) Caradhras (3 threat, 9 quest points) is added to the staging area

2) Rocky Crags (4 threat, 2 quest points) is revealed

Thoughts: I’m not in love with this start. Rocky Crags is pretty much the highest threat I could draw during this initial staging, and it means I will have to face down 7 threat in the staging area during the first quest phase, and that’s before staging. With a deck that doesn’t have the highest starting willpower, I will have to manage this first round carefully. The only positive is that there are no enemies so far, which hopefully will give me some room to build up my forces.

The three Dwarves and Arwen began the slow ascent towards the Redhorn Pass at daybreak. The chill in the air grew even more biting, and drifts of snow began to fall all around them. Caradhras the Cruel stood leering ahead.

“I don’t like the look of that mountain…or this snow,” muttered Gloin. “Have you heard of a winter come this early in the mountains, Bifur?”

“No,” Bifur said worriedly. “I’m even more certain of it. Something evil is afoot in these days.”

“A little chill to make the warm fire at the end of it all the more welcome,” Nori scoffed. “No need to look for dark designs behind every snowflake.”

“Darkness is everywhere in these days,” Arwen said softly. “Whether you look for it or no. Come, let’s clear the pass before the way becomes unpassable.”

The unlikely company strode silently into the white gloom, Caradhras watching impassively but expectantly.

ROUND 1 (7 threat in staging area, 0/9 progress on 1B – Up the Pass, 0 victory points, Active Location – None)

**Staging Area – Caradhras, Rocky Crags**

PLANNING – 25 Threat

Resources: Nori – 1, Gloin – 1, Bifur – 1

Draw: Will of the West

New Hand: Expert Treasure-hunter, Hidden Cache, Legacy of Durin, Zigil Miner, To Me! O My Kinsfolk!, Hardy Leadership, Will of the West

Planning: First, I will play Expert Treasure-hunter on Bifur, since he will be questing every turn. This gives me some valuable card draw right from the start, as well as some discard to look for those copies of Hidden Cache and thin the deck. Speaking of Hidden Cache, the one in my hand is not doing me any good, so I will spend a resource from Gloin and use it to draw a card. Unfortunately, this draws another Hidden Cache. This means that there is only 1 copy of Hidden Cache left in the deck, which makes further mining opportunities scarce. At least, I have the essential Legacy of Durin, which I will play on Bifur. Together with Expert Treasure-hunter, I should have the card draw I need to make this deck hum. Unfortunately, I won’t be able to get any allies onto the table to help with questing, so I’ll probably have to take a threat increase this round.

Resources After Planning: Nori – 1, Gloin – 0, Bifur – 0

Bifur pulled an ancient-looking map from his pack and began to peer over it. The Dwarves had once ruled a realm below these mountains, but also had left some stockpiles of weapons and supplies in the lands above as well. Bifur hoped to lead the company to one of these hidden caches to make sure they had what they needed to make what would undoubtedly be a difficult journey through the pass, much more difficult than anyone had planned. 

“We can also meet up with the others,” Gloin explained to Arwen.

“Others?” she asked.

“Of course,” Nori chuckled. “You did not think that Dwarves so wealthy, important, and wise as ourselves would travel alone, did you?”

QUESTING:

Committing Characters:

Sometimes I tend to be a bit of a gambling man when it comes to this game, perhaps a bit moreso than others, as I feel that a bit of calculated risk can go a long way sometimes and adds some spice as well (until it smacks you in the face). In this case, I’m up against 7 threat before staging, so I’m going to roll the dice and go all in with Arwen (2 willpower), Gloin (2 willpower), Bifur (2 willpower), and Nori (2 willpower) all committed to the quest. If an enemy ends up engaging me, I won’t have a defender, but the enemies with high attack strengths also have high engagement costs in this scenario, so I can possibly take an undefended attack. I really don’t want to take a big threat increase here, which would force me to take on enemies much sooner in this game before my deck is ready to handle them. I will put the resource from Arwen on Gloin.

Staging:

Card 1: Mountain Goblin (25 engagement cost, 1 threat, 2 attack, 2 defense, 3 hit points) – Well, that was unfortunate. I’ve drawn the enemy in this scenario that can engage me, despite my low threat of 25 usually being a nice early game deterrent. The roll of the dice has not been kind. On the other hand, the Mountain Goblin only has 1 threat, which does help with the questing picture.

Resolution:

8 willpower against 8 threat means that I break even. This is a great result considering the initial staging, but I won’t get to trigger Expert Treasure-hunter this round.

With Bifur’s guidance, the company eventually found one of the old Dwarven stockpiles, buried beneath snow and a pile of rocks on the side of the pass. However, it had been disfigured with crude markings and what looked like splashes of blood. There was nothing left inside, and the Dwarves collapsed in a heap beside it, exhausted from the arduous march and dejected by the empty cache.

“We should not stop here,” warned Arwen. “This is clearly the work of orcs, and I doubt they are very far.”

TRAVEL:

There’s no question here about what to do, as I need to get the Rocky Crags and its 4 threat out of the staging area, even if I have to absorb the travel cost, which deals 2 damage to 1 character. I will place the damage on Bifur, as I don’t want to start dealing damage to Gloin until his healing engine is up and running, and Nori, with his 4 hit points, will need to take the undefended damage from the Mountain Goblin. This leaves Bifur with a single hit point remaining.

Leaving the cache behind, Bifur took the lead once more, using his map as a guide. Soon, they reached a part of the pass overlooked by rocky crags, ugly and spiteful looking. Suddenly, several massive rocks broke free from the side of the cliff and smashed onto the path, with the biggest knocking Bifur aside with a sickening thud. Nori rushed to his side with a cry.

ENCOUNTER:

There’s no choice here but to engage the Mountain Goblin. This is clearly not ideal, as I’ll have to take the attack undefended, and the Goblin has +1 attack because of 1 Mountain location in the staging area (Caradhras).

Nori reached Bifur before the others could react, and quickly checked to see if he was still alive. However, a cruel looking Orc, wearing a wolf pelt for a headdress, scrambled down the cliff face from where the rocks had broken off and charged towards Nori. The trap had worked to perfection so far, and it looked like the Mountain Goblin would get two Dwarves with one stone.

COMBAT:

Enemy Attack:

I will take the Mountain Goblin’s attack undefended, as I have no ready characters. This is harrowing stuff. If the shadow card boosts the Mountain Goblin’s attack at all, he will kill a hero on the very first round of the very first quest of this campaign. With trepidation, I turn over the shadow card and reveal…

Avalanche. This has no shadow effect, which means I only have to deal the 3 damage, which I place on Nori. He also only has 1 hit point remaining, and I don’t have much room for error the rest of the way.

Gloin and Arwen saw the Goblin’s charge too late in the blur of snow and called out. Nori turned, just in time for the dagger to bury itself in his side. He fell prone at Bifur’s side and Gloin despaired to see both of his friends laid low in an instant.

ROUND 2 (3 threat in staging area, 0/9 progress on 1B – Up the Pass, 0 victory points, Active Location – Rocky Crags [0/2 progress])

**Staging Area – Caradhras**

PLANNING – 26 Threat

Resources: Nori – 2, Gloin – 2, Bifur – 1

Draw: Erebor Hammersmith

New Hand: Zigil Miner, To Me! O My Kinsfolk!, Hardy Leadership, Will of the West, Hidden Cache, Erebor Hammersmith

Planning: Having a nice new Dwarf ally in hand in the form of the Hammersmith, I’m not going to let him go to waste, so I will pull 1 resource from Gloin over to Bifur. Then, I will pay 2 resources for Erebor Hammersmith, dropping my threat by 1 (to 25) and drawing Spirit Bofur through Legacy of Durin. I’m glad to see Legacy paying off right away, as Spirit Bofur will help greatly with questing, either from hand or played outright. Then, Nori will pay for Zigil Miner, which lowers my threat to 24, and draws another copy of Zigil Miner.

Resources After Planning: Nori – 0, Gloin – 1, Bifur – 0

The horrid Orc flew at the sight of a wrathful Gloin, happy with his evil handiwork. Gloin wished to pursue, but knew that he needed to tend to his friends first. Bifur was dazed, but able to get back to his feet. Nori looked far worse for the wear, but despite his pale visage and heavy breathing opened his eyes at last. It would be hard going fighting the snow and the arduous climb without wounds, but things looked quite grim now. However, the sound of deep voices and crunching boots in the snow signaled timely help in the form of two burly looking Dwarves who came upon them from further down the path as Gloin and Arwen helped Nori to stand. 

“Just in time,” Nori said weakly. 

“Brave fellows of our Erebor mining expedition,” Gloin said formally. “Allow me to introduce you to Arwen Undomiel.”

“At your service,” the newcomers responded with a bow towards Arwen, before turning back to Gloin.. “The pass is crawling with Orcs and Wargs.”

“As you can see, we’ve found some of our own,” Bifur remarked, rubbing the nasty looking bump growing at the back of his head. 

“Come, let us be over the pass,” Gloin said. “I’ll be happy when there’s more gems to mine and less Orc heads to crack.”

QUESTING:

Committing Characters:

I need to keep some bodies back this round to deal with the Mountain Goblin, as I don’t have the defensive strength in place to keep tanking him each turn. Thankfully, Rocky Crags and its 4 threat are out of the staging area, and I just need 2 quest points to clear it. I will commit just Bifur (2 willpower) and Arwen (2 willpower), for a total of 4 willpower against 3 threat in the staging area. This may lead to a threat increase, but thankfully Nori has helped in that department and I really need to make sure the enemy situation doesn’t spiral out of control. Nori will take the resource from Arwen this time, so that he can pay for Bofur if necessary.

Staging:

Card 1: Snow Warg (28 engagement cost, 3 threat, 3 attack, 1 defense, 4 hit points): The Snow Warg is a truly nasty beast. It has 3 threat, which clogs the staging area, but then is tough in combat, with allies unable to defend and direct damage on the menu for the defender as well. With my heroes having already taken a beating, this is not a card I wanted to see.

Snow-Warg

Resolution:

My 4 willpower against 6 threat would lead to a threat gain, which I’m not interested in with my threat too close to the 28 engagement cost of the Snow Warg for comfort. I will pay 1 to put Spirit Bofur into play, which boosts my willpower to 6 in order to break even. The positive here is that since I did not technically quest successfully, Bofur will actually remain in play, providing me a nice discount on a permanent 2 willpower ally!

The Dwarven miners had some supplies on them and bandaged Bifur and Nori up as best they could. Together, the company began to make progress through the pass, but it was slow going between the injured and having to tread carefully until they passed the rocky crags, which could be home to more ambushes. Bifur and Arwen led the way forward, with Gloin and the two miners watching the crags in case more goblins emerged. A muffled, yet clearly bestial, roar was a sign that Wargs were indeed afoot, but none showed themselves. A sudden clang caused Gloin to bring his axe to bear, and a small figure emerged from behind a rocky outcrop ahead.

“Well, met, cousin,” Bofur said in greeting to Bifur. “I see my scouts found you.”

The two miners looked at each other dubiously, none too pleased to be referred to as “scouts”. Bofur ignored their looks. 

“I was worried when you didn’t make it to the meeting point,” as Bofur approached closer, he caught sight of Bifur’s bloodied head and Nori’s bandaged wound. “Quickly, our camp is just ahead!”

TRAVEL:

Rocky Crags remains the active location, but with no new location in the staging area, this is an acceptable situation for now.

ENCOUNTER:

Although I don’t like leaving the 3 threat of the Snow Warg in the staging area, I want no part of the fierce beast with no good defensive solution available. Gloin would take at least 3 damage, but could be killed by an attack boost, and I’m not willing to tempt fate a second time. Therefore, I’ll forego optional engagements and move to combat.

COMBAT:

Enemy Attack:

I have a bit of a dilemma here, as I presently have exactly enough attack power to kill the Mountain Goblin, but any defensive choice I make will take away at least 1 point of attack.  However, I have a nice solution in hand. Thus, I’ll declare Zigil Miner as the defender. The shadow card is another Mountain Goblin, which gives a +2 attack boost. The Mountain Goblin hits for a total of 5 and destroys the Zigil Miner (5 attack – 1 defense =4 damage), and I’m glad I wasn’t defending with a hero. Here’s my moment of trickery, as I will play To Me! O My Kinsfolk! to bring the Zigil Miner back until the end of the phase. Often, this card is considered to be a good way to bring in a chump blocker, which is true, but it also allows you to chump and then still use that ally for attack purposes.

Player Attack:

I will attack the Mountain Goblin with Nori (1 attack), Gloin (2 attack), Erebor Hammersmith (1 attack), and Zigil Miner (1 attack). This is a total of 5 attack against the Goblin’s 2 defense, which deals 3 damage, enough to destroy the Mountain Goblin. The Zigil Miner goes to the bottom of my deck at the end of the phase.

A warm fire beneath an overhang ahead signaled the expedition’s camp, which was a welcome sight for the travelers. Just as their guard relaxed though, the Goblin with the wolf pelt emerged from the shadows once again, driving his dagger into the back of one of the miners, who collapsed to his knees. However, the Goblin had made a mistake this time, and the rest of the company was near enough to close the distance before he could escape. With a few well-placed swipes, the Goblin was left bloody and running, only to meet the pickaxe of the wounded miner who had risen to gain his revenge. The rest of the camp hurried over at the sounds of battle, and the miner, who had fallen prone and near death, was carried towards the fire.

ROUND 3 (6 threat in staging area, 0/9 progress on 1B – Up the Pass, 0 victory points, Active Location – Rocky Crags [0/2 progress])

**Staging Area – Caradhras, Snow Warg**

PLANNING – 25 Threat

Resources: Nori – 1, Gloin – 1, Bifur – 1

Draw: Hidden Cache

New Hand: Hardy Leadership, Will of the West, Hidden Cache, Zigil Miner, Hidden Cache

Planning: The final copy of Hidden Cache has been drawn, which means my mining dreams are a bit limited now. I could immediately recycle them back into my deck using Will of the West, but at this point, I’m more concerned about getting some more allies and willpower into play and a thinner deck is my friend. So, I will pay 1 from Bifur to use a Hidden Cache to draw a card, which is We Are Not Idle. I’m not interested in trading away any action advantage at the moment, but I will use We Are Not Idle to draw another card, which is A Test of Will. This is great insurance against Freezing Cold, which could spell doom for one of my heroes. Unfortunately, I can’t play my other Zigil Miner yet, so I’ll have to make do with my current characters.

Resources After Planning: Nori – 1, Gloin – 1, Bifur – 0

After a long night spent in the cold and fighting to keep the fire alive against the wind and snow, the company made it through to a gloomy and even more foreboding dawn than that of the previous day. Several of the Dwarves were not idle through the night, and kept busy stoking the fire and tending to the wounded. By the morning, Nori still felt a bit weak, but was rejuvenated enough to take up the journey once more. 

QUESTING:

Committing Characters:

With a sizable 6 threat in the staging area, I need to commit enough characters to clear the Rocky Crags in case another location shows up. The last thing I need is to flirt with location lock or be forced to engage with the Snow Warg just to clear out threat from the staging area. Therefore, I will commit Arwen (2 willpower), Bifur (2 willpower), Nori (2 willpower), Gloin (2 willpower), and Bofur (2 willpower), leaving Hammersmith back for potential defensive duty. This is a total of 10 willpower, and Nori will take the resource from Arwen.

Staging:

Card 1.1: Fell Voices – This returns the top 2 Snow cards from the encounter discard pile to the top of the encounter deck. In this case, Fell Voices moves Avalanche to the top of the encounter deck. Since fewer than 2 cards were returned, Fell Voices gains surge, which will reveal the Avalanche.

Card 1.2: Avalanche – Avalanche forces the only ready character, Erebor Hammersmith to exhaust and also commits him to the quest. If I had to face an enemy this round, this could be disastrous, but since I can leave the Snow Warg in place, this effect actually helps me to make more progress.

Resolution:

With a new total of 11 willpower against 6 threat in the staging area, I make 5 progress. 2 tokens clear out Rocky Crags, while the remaining 3 are placed on stage 1B.

Several of the Dwarves in camp remained behind to break camp. The original company moved on and looked to finally move clear of the rocky crags that had plagued them so much so far, and remained a source of potential ambush from Orcs and Wargs. However, the snow began to fall more heavily, covering the cliff face in white and making it hard for any creature to do much more than slog through it. Bifur remained convinced of the malicious nature of the unseasonable weather, and he felt certain that the way was being purposely barred against them. Only Arwen’s words made him pause.

“Anything is possible,” she said thoughtfully. “But the darkness in this world has greater concerns at present than a few Dwarves and one Elf.”

Bifur was snapped out of these thoughts by what sounded like a fell voice on the air. He stood transfixed and the others paused as well, searching for what had took hold of him in the sightless snow and darkness above. 

“What do you see?” Gloin called to him. “What do you hear?”

Bfur did not reply, remaining motionless. It was Nar, the surviving miner of the two that had found them previously, that saved them all with his keen ears and quick thinking. 

“Avalanche!” he cried. Once the words were out, the loud rumbling was unmistakable.

The company flew forward as if all of Mordor was behind them, with Arwen gliding over the surface of the snow. Snow and boulders began to crash around them, but the main force of the avalanche was yet to unleash its fury. Fortunately, it was contained to the rocky crags, and once they cleared the part of the pass under the cliff face, they reached safety.

ENCOUNTER:

I still want no part of that Snow Warg, and I’m thankful for the constant threat reduction that Nori provides to the deck. He’s really pulling his weight here so far!

ROUND 4 (6 threat in staging area, 3/9 progress on 1B – Up the Pass, 0 victory points, Active Location – None)

**Staging Area – Caradhras, Snow Warg**

PLANNING – 26 Threat

Resources: Nori – 3, Gloin – 2, Bifur – 1

Draw: Narvi’s Belt

New Hand: Hardy Leadership, Will of the West, Hidden Cache, Zigil Miner, A Test of Will, Narvi’s Belt

Planning: I’m definitely happy to draw Narvi’s Belt, as this is one of the key elements of the Gloin resource engine I want to build. Unfortunately, I’m not drawing the allies I need to start getting the Legacy of Durin card draw engine really going in earnest. Fortunately, I do have the Zigil Miner in hand and 2 Spirit resources. Therefore, I will pay 2 for the Zigil Miner, reducing my threat to 25 and drawing Legacy of Durin. This does me no good but does get me a little closer to something more helpful (hopefully). I will then pay 2 and attach Narvi’s Belt to Gloin.

Resources After Planning: Nori – 1, Gloin – 0, Bifur – 1

The company now found themselves on the other side of an avalanche cut off from the camp behind. Fortunately, there were also some Dwarves sent ahead further down the pass. One found his way back to the group as they dusted themselves off and prepared to resume the journey. Not only did their new companion offer some guidance to the road ahead, he also brought a precious gift for Gloin: a special belt gifted by Dain Ironfoot and said to be a relic from Narvi himself. Gloin had entrusted it to this particular Dwarf, but he now was not willing to part with this token of good fortune any longer. Strapping it around his waist, he began to undertake the trek with renewed determination and the others fell into line. 

QUESTING:

Committing Characters:

Again, I’m up against 6 threat in the staging area, which means I have to constantly balance committing the large amount of willpower I need with making sure that I’m defensively covered. The alternative is to engage the Snow Warg to clear that threat out of the staging area, but I would like to get some healing on the board before I throw Gloin to the wolves. For now, I’ll commit Arwen (2 willpower), Nori (2 willpower), Bifur (2 willpower), Bofur (2 willpower) and Erebor Hammersmith (1 willpower) for a total of 9. I will add Arwen’s resource to Gloin’s pool. Since there isn’t an active location to worry about, this should be a high enough level to at least break even, and making substantial progress isn’t really my goal right now. I’d rather build up my forces a bit more before plowing through to the next stage.

Staging:

Card 1: Mountain Warg (30 engagement cost, 2 threat, 4 attack, 2 defense, 4 hit points) – The Wargs are coming fast and thick now. This one is fortunately a bit less nasty than the Snow Warg, mainly because he can be defended by allies. 

Mountain-Warg

Resolution:

9 willpower against 8 willpower leads to 1 progress, which goes on stage 1B. Since I’m looking to get some allies into hand, I will trigger Expert Treasure-hunter and guess “ally”, drawing a Longbeard Map-maker. This is a great draw, as the Longbeard Map-maker’s ability to boost his willpower will come in handy, especially against the last stage of the quest.

Although the seemingly more dangerous area of the pass was left behind, the company still felt uneasy and the way ahead was hard. With weary steps, they climbed ever higher, but there always seemed to be more road ahead and no end in sight. There were several times that hateful growling echoed through the mountains around them, a clear sign of Wargs, but none showed themselves. 

ENCOUNTER:

Although allowing threat to pile up in the staging area doesn’t seem like the wisest course, it is clear that my real strength right now is willpower and not combat. I would like some more help before I engage the tough Snow Warg or even the Mountain Warg. Thus, I’ll hold off on engagement and content myself with mining instead. Thus, I’ll exhaust the Zigil Miner and guess “3”, which is a fairly common cost given the allies in the deck. I discard Expert Treasure-hunter and Longbeard Elder, yielding 1 resource, which I place on Bifur. Keep in mind that this mining is as much about thinning my deck to more quickly get to useful cards as it is about the resources, as I can safely recycle everything to start again with Will of the West.

The supplies that Farin, the Dwarf who had joined them from the advance party, had brought proved useful: more furs to keep warm and information to add to Bifur’s map being the most important.

ROUND 5 (8 threat in staging area, 4/9 progress on 1B – Up the Pass, 0 victory points, Frodo’s Life – 5/15, Active Location – None)

**Staging Area – Caradhras, Snow Warg, Mountain Warg**

PLANNING – 26 Threat

Resources: Nori – 2, Gloin – 2, Bifur – 3

Draw: Miner of the Iron Hills

New Hand: Hardy Leadership, Will of the West, Hidden Cache, A Test of Will, Legacy of Durin, Longbeard Map-maker,  Miner of the Iron Hills

Planning: I’ve drawn another Dwarf ally, which is great news. For now, though, I’ll want to hold onto the Miner of the Iron Hills, just in case Freezing Cold shows up. Instead, I have enough resources to pay for Longbeard Map-maker, thanks to Zigil Miner, and I don’t have anything else pressing to take up the resources instead. So I’ll pay 3 from Bifur for the Map Maker, reducing my threat to 25 once more and drawing Cram through Legacy of Durin. The Cram is most useful for Gloin, and I’ll attach it to him right away, as he can quest and still be available for combat, if needed.

Resources: Nori – 2, Gloin – 2, Bifur – 0

The finest map-maker in the Dwarven expedition had made finely detailed notes to give to Farin, who passed them onto Bifur. With these at Bifur’s fingertips, he was able to guide them on the path of least resistance and was able to find every piece of suitable shelter along the way when they needed a rest. In this way, they hoped to cut down on the travel time and escape the mountains before the moderate snowfall became a true storm.

QUESTING:

Committing Characters:

With 8 threat in the staging area, I will need to quest strongly this turn, and fortunately I have the capability to do so. I will commit Bifur (2 willpower), Nori (2 willpower), Arwen (2 willpower), Bofur (2 willpower), and the Longbeard Map-maker (1 willpower) for a total of 9 willpower. I will then exhaust Narvi’s Belt to give Gloin the Lore resource icon and also give him the resource from Arwen as well. This gives me some additional Lore resources to spend to bump up the Map-maker, if necessary. With a similar thought in mind, I will pay 1 resource from Nori to add 1 resource to Bifur. I should be ready for questing.

Staging:

Card 1: Bitter Wind – This treachery will remove 3 resources from each hero, essentially discarding everything. Although this is not ideal, I don’t feel comfortable using A Test of Will to cancel this effect when there are more horrible possibilities in the encounter deck. Therefore, I’ll let Bitter Wind resolve and remove all resources from my heroes.

Resolution:

9 willpower against 8 willpower yields 1 progress, which is placed on stage 1B – Up the Pass, for a total of 5 out of 9. I’m slowly making progress, which is all that matters at this point. Since I quested successfully, I will trigger Expert Treasure-hunter and guess “ally” once again. I draw Well-Equipped, which is discarded. Since I have no plans to engage enemies once again this round, I will exhaust Zigil Miner once more, guessing “3”.  I discard A Test of Will and Lure of Moria, which means that I yield 1 resource, which I will place on Gloin, who is now the best recipient of resources, since he can pay for anything using Narvi’s Belt.

Although no enemies showed themselves, a bitter wind began to blow, slowing their progress to a crawl and cutting through even the heaviest of furs and clothes. The chill became so fierce that the company was forced to seek shelter under a small overhang until it subsided. 

ROUND 6 (8 threat in staging area, 5/9 progress on 1B- Up the Pass , 0 victory points, Active Location – None)

**Staging Area – Caradhras, Snow Warg, Mountain Warg**

PLANNING – 26 Threat

Resources: Nori – 1, Gloin – 2, Bifur – 1

Draw: Erebor Record Keeper

New Hand: Hardy Leadership, Will of the West, Hidden Cache, A Test of Will, Legacy of Durin, Miner of the Iron Hills

Planning: I will simply pay 1 resource from Bifur for Erebor Record Keeper, lowering my threat to 25 and drawing Longbeard Elder. The latter is a fantastic ally, as he can quest during stage 3, even while Caradhras is in play.

Resources: Nori – 1, Gloin – 2, Bifur – 0

“I’m telling you all,” Bifur said as they huddled against the rock wall. “I’ve checked our people’s records stretching back generations and no one can remember a winter falling this deeply and early upon these mountains.”

“Only you would stuff your pack full of dusty tomes and scrolls,” Nori snorted. “If you have a recipe for turning snow into the finest ale, then I’m all ears.”

“There is only one that I know of who can change the weather itself,” Gloin said darkly. “And I dare not say his name aloud. He has fallen long ago and should remain so.”

“We should save such talk for the safety of my home,” Arwen said. “These mountains feed off darkness…and dark memories.”

QUESTING:

Committing Characters:

It’s pretty much more of the same here, with a focus on questing and avoiding enemies until Self Preservation arrives to help Gloin with defense and/or an Erebor Battle Master appears. Thus, I’ll commit Nori (2 willpower), Bifur (2 willpower), Arwen (2 willpower), Bofur (2 willpower), Longbeard Map-maker (1 willpower), and Erebor Record Keeper (1 willpower) for a total of 10 against 8 in the staging area. Gloin will exhaust Narvi’s Belt to gain the Lore resource icon, and he will also take the resource from Arwen.

Staging:

Card 1: Knees of the Mountain (2 threat, 3 quest points) – This is a fairly innocuous draw. Although Knees of the Mountain boosts enemy attack while it is in the staging area, I will be shortly making it the active location.

Knees-of-the-Mountain

Resolution:

I end up with 10 willpower against 10 threat in the staging area. I would like to at least quest successfully to trigger Expert Treasure-hunter, so I will pay 1 from Gloin to boost the willpower of the Map Maker by 1. This places 1 more progress on stage 1B. I guess “ally” once more for the Treasure-hunter, but end up discarding Unexpected Courage. 

TRAVEL:

There’s really no reason not to travel to the Knees of the Mountain, so I will make it the active location.

The cruel face of Caradhras loomed ever closer, and although they seemed to be surrounded by other high peaks, they were merely among the knees of that mighty mountain. If there was one thing that Bifur was sure of, it was that the real danger would arise when they were firmly within Caradhras’ grasp.

ROUND 7 (8 threat in staging area, 6/9 progress on 1B – Up the Pass, 0 victory points, Active Location – Knees of the Mountain [0/3 progress])

**Staging Area – Caradhras, Snow Warg, Mountain Warg**

PLANNING – 26 Threat

Resources: Nori – 2, Gloin – 3, Bifur – 1

Draw: Cram

New Hand: Hardy Leadership, Will of the West, Hidden Cache, A Test of Will, Legacy of Durin, Miner of the Iron Hills, Longbeard Elder, Cram

Planning: I have enough to play Longbeard Elder, which I will gladly do, lowering my threat to 25 and drawing Erebor Battle Master with Legacy of Durin. Now we’re talking! With Narvi’s Belt in place, I can pay for the Battle Master soon and be able to finally take down some of these Wargs. I will also attach the new copy of Cram to Nori, as he can serve as a back up defender if the need arises.

Resources: Nori – 2, Gloin – 0, Bifur – 1

Among the knees of Caradhras, the company came across Farin’s advance party. Several Dwarves were part of this party, including an ancient looking Dwarf who was huddled by a sputtering fire under a hastily built shelter. He looked set to shiver apart in the cold and unforgiving noon light. 

“How are you, Gamil?” Gloin asked him as they approached.

“I’m fine, no need for coddling,” he replied crankily. “I’ve traveled this pass more times than any other living Dwarf.”

This was the truth and exactly why he had insisted on making the trek all the way from Erebor, despite his advanced age.

“That’s why we need you to guide us, Gamil, one more time,” Gloin said gently. “We need to escape these mountains before the winter truly arrives in wrath.”

QUESTING:

Committing Characters:

I will commit Bifur (2 willpower), Nori (2 willpower), Arwen (2 willpower), Erebor Record Keeper (1 willpower), Longbeard Map-maker (1 willpower), Bofur (2 willpower), and Longbeard Elder (2 willpower) for a total of 12 willpower. Gloin will take the resource from Arwen and exhausts Narvi’s belt to gain the Lore resource icon.

Staging:

Card 1: The Dimrill Stair (2 threat, 3 quest points) – This is actually one of the helpful locations in the quest. You have to shuffle all locations in the discard pile and victory display into the encounter deck, which could be harmful at the end of the quest, in order to travel to it, but if you shuffle at least two, you get to lower your threat by 11 and discard all copies of Freezing Cold. Unfortunately, this does raise an interesting geography issue, as the Dimrill Stair is technically at the beginning of the Redhorn Pass coming from the East, leading up from the Dimrill Gate. This is one of the casualties of the abstract approach to locations that the game takes, and makes building a narrative sometimes a bit thorny. But I shall persevere!

Resolution:

I committed 12 willpower to the quest and am now faced with a total of 10 threat in the staging area. The active location, Knees of the Mountain, has 3 quest points, and I would really like to clear it so I can travel to the Dimrill Stair. Thus, I’ll remove 1 resource from Bifur to add 1 willpower to Longbeard Map-maker, boosting my total willpower to 13, which is enough to clear the active location. I really want Self Preservation at this point, so I will trigger Expert Treasure-hunter and guess “attachment”, but end up discarding another copy of Miner of the Iron Hills instead. Finally, I will exhaust Zigil Miner and guess “3”. I discard Self Preservation and Dwarven Tomb. It is tough luck to finally find Self Preservation only to discard it, and I will have to content myself with the small consolation of 1 resource, which I will add to Gloin’s pool.

TRAVEL:

With Knees of the Mountain out of the way, I can now travel to the Dimrill Stair. There are no copies of Freezing Cold in play, but lowering my threat by 11 sounds like a great deal. Fortunately, there are exactly two locations in the discard pile: Rocky Crags and the recently explored Knees of the Mountain. I therefore lower my threat by 11, down to 14.

Gamil led the company forward, now joined by all members of the advance party, up the pass. It might have been expected that they would have to slow their pace to accommodate the older Dwarf, but he set a hard march that surprised everyone. Just as they seemed to be making steady progress, however, a terrible sight turned Gloin’s stomach: the pass ahead was clearly blocked by another small avalanche. Mounds of snow were piled high, and it was impossible to tell how deep it was before one could find solid footing as well.

“Well, that’s gone and done it,” Nori muttered. “We’ll have to go back and try again with the thawing of the snows.”

“We must push forward,” Arwen said firmly. 

“Are you mad?” Nar interjected. “We will push our way into our own graves before we ever reach the other side. For ones who live forever, Elves can sure be impatient!”

The Dwarves began to argue in earnest, with Bifur for one leaping to Arwen’s defense, arguing that they should hold to the promise they made, while others remained steadfast that there was nothing to be done.

“Quiet your squawkings, young ones, there’s another way,” Gamil called out. “A hidden way, a stair through the mountains and around this part of the pass, much like the Dimrill Stair we climbed to get here.”

“Almost too convenient,” Nori said in reply. “Now we’ll be separated from a way back by not one, but two avalanches. I’m almost beginning to believe your conspiracies, Bifur.”

“We will continue,” Gloin said authoritatively, and the Dwarves began to follow Gamil as he clambered up the incline to their right. 

“Well, that does it then,” Nori stated. “It’s on ’til death or descent then!”

ROUND 8 (8 threat in staging area, 6/9 progress on 1B – Up the Pass, 0 victory points, Active Location – Dimrill Stair [0/3 progress])

**Staging Area – Caradhras, Snow Warg, Mountain Warg**

PLANNING – 15 Threat

Resources: Nori – 3, Gloin – 3, Bifur – 1

Draw: Erebor Hammersmith

New Hand: Hardy Leadership, Will of the West, Hidden Cache, A Test of Will, Legacy of Durin, Miner of the Iron Hills, Erebor Battle Master

Planning: I have been blessed with incredible fortune here, as the Erebor Hammersmith can help to recover Self Preservation, which just so happens to be the top attachment in my discard pile! First things first, though, I will exhaust Narvi’s Belt to give Gloin the Tactics resource icon. I will then pay 3 from Gloin to play Erebor Battle Master. It looks like the resource from the Zigil Miner came in handy after. This lowers my threat to 14 and draws Dwalin through Legacy of Durin. I will then remove 1 resource from Nori and add it to Bifur, which allows me to play Erebor Hammersmith, lowering my threat to 13 and drawing a second copy of Expert Treasure-hunter. I will then recover Self Preservation from the discard pile through the Hammersmith’s effect. As my final action, I will attach Expert Treasure-hunter to my other main quester, Nori. This was definitely an eventful planning phase, and gives a good example of the deck in action when it is really humming along, benefiting from extra resources from mining and resource transfer from Bifur, along with the usual Dwarven staple effects from Legacy of Durin and Nori that provide unparalleled threat reduction and card draw.

Resources: Nori – 2, Gloin – 0, Bifur – 0

At first, Gamil seemed to be leading them to nowhere, as they slipped and climbed up an icy incline. However, after several hours of struggle, they came across a cleft between two outcroppings of stone. Between them could be seen a worn and faded stair that led through part of the mountain. Gamil assured them that it was safe, secret, and would lead them back around to the pass at some future point. Even better, it seemed likely that they would lose anyone pursuing them, at least for the present.

QUESTING:

Committing Characters:

I will commit Bifur (2 willpower), Nori (2 willpower), Arwen (2 willpower), Erebor Record Keeper (1 willpower), Longbeard Map-maker (1 willpower), Bofur (2 willpower), Erebor Hammersmith (1 willpower) and Longbeard Elder (2 willpower) for a total of 13 willpower. Bifur will take the resource from Arwen.

Staging:

Card 1: Rocky Crags (4 threat, 2 quest points) – Another appearance from the Rocky Crags, which I don’t mind too much, although the 4 threat will definitely slow my progress.

Resolution:

13 willpower against 12 threat yields 1 progress. I could boost the Map-maker to add another progress, but it won’t make much of a difference, so instead I’ll just content myself with 1 progress being placed on Dimrill Stair. I will trigger both copies of Expert Treasure-hunter and guess “ally” for both, hitting on an Ered Nimrais Prospector but discarding another Unexpected Courage.

ENCOUNTER:

Since I can’t travel to Rocky Crags, I really need to clear one of those enemies out of the staging area to make questing easier. Thankfully, I now have the Battle Master on the board and Self Preservation in my back pocket. Thus, I will engage with the Mountain Warg. This is a tough decision, as the Snow Warg has higher threat and doesn’t pose the danger of bouncing back to the staging area like the Mountain Warg might. However, the Snow Warg is still dangerous, as there is always a chance that an attack boosting shadow could actually kill Gloin, and that’s not a chance I’m willing to take at this point. 

Most of the company began to relax as they ascended the stair, sheltered from the cold as they were and seemingly safe from enemies, but Gloin thought he could hear a scraping sound just behind. Each time they paused for a moment, he could hear it behind them, but nothing could be seen. Finally, Gloin motioned to a burly Dwarf in the company, wielding a huge battleaxe, and they fell into the shadows to either side as the company pressed forward. Soon, the scraping revealed itself as a Warg crept into view, climbing the stairs, its huge claws scraping the stone as it moved forward. Fortunately, it was intent on the prey in sight further ahead, and it realized too late the scent of Dwarf on either side was closer than it should be. Gloin and the axe-wielding Dwarf charged from the shadows in unison.

COMBAT:

Enemy Attack:

I declare Erebor Hammersmith as the defender against the Mountain Warg. The shadow card has no effect, which means Mountain Warg will return to the staging area. Unfortunately, the Hammersmith is destroyed anyway (4 attack – 1 defense = 3 damage).

The wily, battle-scarred Warg was faster than the two Dwarves anticipated, and he clambered up the stairs right past them before they could take a step. Gloin called out to the Dwarves but it was too late. The Warg caught the hindmost Dwarf in its massive jaws and bit down with a nauseating crunch.

ROUND 9 (12 threat in staging area, 6/9 progress on 1B – Up the Pass, 0 victory points, Active Location – Dimrill Stair [1/3 progress])

**Staging Area – Caradhras, Snow Warg, Mountain Warg, Mountain Warg**

PLANNING – 14 Threat

Resources: Nori – 3, Gloin – 1, Bifur – 2

Draw: A Burning Brand

New Hand: Will of the West, Hidden Cache, A Test of Will, Legacy of Durin, Miner of the Iron Hills, Dwalin, Self Preservation, Ered Nimrais Prospector, A Burning Brand

Planning: A Burning Brand is a great draw, as I can eventually place it on Gloin using Narvi’s Belt and be able to take on the Snow Warg without fear. For now, though, I’ll transfer a resource from Nori to Bifur to play Self Preservation on Gloin instead. I will also pay 1 from Nori for Dwalin, lowering my threat to 13 and drawing another copy of Narvi’s Belt.

Resources: Nori – 1, Gloin – 1, Bifur – 0

QUESTING:

Committing Characters:

It’s all hands on deck here in order to overcome the 12 threat in the staging area and make sure that I clear the Dimrill Stair. Fortunately, I have Cram on the table to ready Gloin and Nori for combat, if necessary. I will commit Bifur (2 willpower), Nori (2 willpower), Gloin (2 willpower), Arwen (2 willpower), Erebor Record Keeper (1 willpower), Longbeard Map-maker (1 willpower), Bofur (2 willpower), Erebor Hammersmith (1 willpower), Dwalin (1 willpower), Zigil Miner (1 willpower) and Longbeard Elder (2 willpower) for a total of 17 willpower. Unfortunately, in this case, I forgot to add the resource from Arwen to a hero.

Staging:

Card 1: Mountain Warg (30 engagement cost, 2 threat, 4 attack, 2 defense, 4 hit points) – Yet another Warg in the staging area, and it’s definitely time to start clearing threat out of the staging area.

Resolution:

My total of 17 willpower against 14 threat in the staging area yields 3 progress. This clears the Dimrill Stair, adding 1 victory point, and also adds 1 more progress to stage 1B. I will choose not to trigger the Expert Treasure-hunters in play, as I want to avoid discarding anything else useful, and I’m happy with my card draw at the moment.

TRAVEL:

With Dimrill Stair out of the way, I can now travel to Rocky Crags, dealing 2 damage to Gloin to do so, which adds 2 to his pool. I will then immediately exhaust Self Preservation to heal the 2 damage. I could take on a Warg, but with Rocky Crags out of the staging area, there now is only 10 threat in the staging area, and I have plenty of willpower to just keep questing away.

Utter chaos erupted as the company raced up the stair to escape the ferocious Warg. Gloin and the burly Dwarf nipped at its heels, desperately trying to catch up. Dwalin, who had joined them as part of the advance party, held up the rear, furiously beating back the Warg so that the others could escape. Gloin harassed the beast from behind and it turned to snap at him, allowing the rest of the Dwarves to make a clean escape. He feinted one way, then another, rushing past the beast and towards the daylight. Running faster than he ever thought possible, Gloin reached the end of the stairs and flew through the opening there. The Warg’s massive body crashed against the narrow exit, shattering rock everywhere. Several bits of rock tore Gloin’s flesh, but he had enough presence of mind to roll out of the way of two huge stones that nearly impaled him, planting themselves in the snow around his head instead.

ROUND 10 (10 threat in staging area, 7/9 progress on 1B – Up the Pass, 1 victory point, Active Location – Rocky Crags [0/2 progress])

**Staging Area – Caradhras, Snow Warg, Mountain Warg, Rocky Crags**

PLANNING – 14 Threat

Resources: Nori – 2, Gloin – 4, Bifur – 1

Draw: Lure of Moria

New Hand: Hardy Leadership, Will of the West, Hidden Cache, A Test of Will, Legacy of Durin, Miner of the Iron Hills, Ered Nimrais Prospector, A Burning Brand, Narvi’s Belt, Lure of Moria

Planning: I will exhaust Narvi’s Belt to give Gloin the Lore resource icon, then pay 2 from his pool to attach A Burning Brand to him. He has now reached his full potential as a defender. Then, I will move a resource from Nori to Bifur to play Ered Nimrais Prospector. However, I will choose to not trigger his response, as I’d rather draw the cards in my deck than discard them, especially with Hidden Cache out of the picture. Instead, I’ll simply lower my threat to 13 and draw We Are Not Idle through Legacy of Durin. This sets up one of the most potent Dwarven combinations. I will exhaust every Dwarf I control to add 12 resources to Gloin and draw a card, which is Longbeard Elder. Now, I will pay 3 from Gloin for Lure of Moria, which readies all my Dwarf characters. The train keeps on running, as I will then pay 3 from Gloin for Longbeard Elder, which lowers my threat to 12 and draws Longbeard Map-maker. Gloin already has the Lore icon from exhausting Narvi’s Belt earlier, so I will use 3 more of his resources for the Map Maker I just drew, lowering my threat to 11 and drawing another copy of Self Preservation. I will use more of Gloin’s resources to play that Self Preservation on Gloin as well, making him into the ultimate defense/resource machine. Phew!

Resources: Nori – 1, Gloin – 2, Bifur – 0

We-Are-Not-Idle

The Warg was trapped in the stair, snarling and clawing at the rock. Although the temptation was strong to simply flee, Gloin quickly got to his feet and organized the large company of Dwarves into a cohesive unit, working as one.

“We cannot leave such a beast at our back,” he said, and they knew the truth of his words. 

As the Warg struggled to get free, the Dwarves worked tirelessly and quickly to execute Gloin’s plan…

QUESTING:

Committing Characters:

I will definitely want to take on a Warg this round, so I will need to hold back a few key characters for combat. I will commit Bifur (2 willpower), Nori (2 willpower), Longbeard Elder (2 willpower), Arwen (2 willpower), Erebor Record Keeper (1 willpower), Longbeard Map-maker (1 willpower), Longbeard Map-maker (1 willpower), Bofur (2 willpower), Ered Nimrais Prospector (1 willpower) and Longbeard Elder (2 willpower) for a total of 16 willpower. Again, I forgot to give Arwen’s resource to anyone this turn.

Staging:

Card 1: Rocky Crags (4 threat, 2 quest points) – The Redhorn Pass apparently consists of nothing but rocky crags. Still, no reason to complain here.

Resolution:

My total of 16 willpower against 14 threat leads to 2 progress, which is enough to clear out the Rocky Crags.

TRAVEL:

I will travel to the new copy of Rocky Crags, dealing 2 damage to Gloin and immediately healing it with a copy of Self Preservation, gaining 2 resources in the process.

Under Gloin’s direction, the Dwarves had hastily created a trap in the snow, one that would hold the Warg as it burst forth. However, as all wise folk know, the best laid plans of Dwarves, Men, and Elves will oft go astray. In this case, the Dwarves waited patiently as the Warg within hammered against the fallen stone. Soon, it began to give way, and the Warg that had been pursuing them burst forth, only to fall into the hole they had dug. To all of their surprise, though, a second Warg emerged and leapt over the trap directly into their midst. A second Warg had tracked them and joined the first! Its fur was white as snow and it was even larger than the first Warg.

ENCOUNTER:

I will engage the Snow Warg. I have the shadow cancellation and healing I need, and the Snow Warg won’t escape like the Mountain Wargs.

COMBAT:

Enemy Attack:

I will defend with Gloin, who will immediately take 1 damage from the Snow Warg’s forced effect. The shadow card is cancelled by A Burning Brand, meaning that Gloin takes a further 2 damage from the attack (3 attack – 1 defense = 2 damage). He thus gains a total of 3 resources from the 3 total damage so far. I will exhaust the other copy of Self Preservation to heal 2 of this damage.

Player Attack:

Erebor Battle Master will swing back with a massive attack of 11, for the 11 other Dwarf allies I currently control. This destroys the Snow Warg and then some (11 attack – 1 defense = 10 damage).

Gloin faced down the Warg without fear, thrusting a burning torch he had lit as part of their trap directly into its fur. Enraged, the Warg swiped at Gloin with its huge claws. The old Dwarf was surprisingly agile or at least blessed by fortune, as though each swipe tore his flesh, he dodged enough that they did no real hurt. While the Warg was occupied with Gloin, the battle axe wielding Dwarf appeared from the crowd and cleft the beast’s head from its body in one massive stroke.

ROUND 11 (7 threat in staging area, 7/9 progress on 1B – Up the Pass, 1 victory point, Active Location – Rocky Crags [0/2 progress])

**Staging Area – Caradhras, Mountain Warg, Mountain Warg**

PLANNING – 12 Threat

Resources: Nori – 2, Gloin – 6, Bifur – 1

Draw: Ered Nimrais Prospector

New Hand: Hardy Leadership, Will of the West, Hidden Cache, A Test of Will, Legacy of Durin, Miner of the Iron Hills, Narvi’s Belt, Ered Nimrais Prospector

Planning: This should be a more simple planning than last round’s flurry. I will play Hardy Leadership on Gloin to add some breathing room.

Resources: Nori – 2, Gloin – 4, Bifur – 1

QUESTING:

Committing Characters:

I will commit a similar lineup to last round: Bifur (2 willpower), Nori (2 willpower), Longbeard Elder (2 willpower), Arwen (2 willpower), Erebor Record Keeper (1 willpower), Longbeard Map-maker (1 willpower), Longbeard Map-maker (1 willpower), Bofur (2 willpower), Erebor Hammersmith (1 willpower) and Longbeard Elder (2 willpower) for a total of 16 willpower. Once again, old age strikes the Dwarves, as I don’t add Arwen’s resource to anyone.

Staging:

Card 1: Mountain Goblin (25 engagement cost, 1 threat, 2 attack, 2 defense, 3 hit points) – At this point, I laugh at puny Goblins, and this shouldn’t cause me too much trouble at all.

Resolution:

16 willpower against 8 threat yields 8 progress, which is enough to clear out Rocky Crags and finally advance to stage 2. This new stage adds 2 copies of Snowstorm to the encounter deck. I’m at the point now where I can go into full gear and try to complete this quest within the next few turns. I will trigger both copies of Expert Treasure-hunter and guess “attachment”, earning both Cram and yet another copy of Narvi’s Belt.

Snowdrifts

ENCOUNTER:

I will engage one of the copies of Mountain Warg.

COMBAT:

Enemy Attack:

Gloin will defend against the Mountain Warg, taking 3 damage (4 attack – 1 defense = 3 damage) and gaining 3 resources. Unfortunately for the Warg, the shadow card is Black Uruks, which does have a shadow effect, which means it can’t bounce back to the staging area, but the effect is cancelled by A Burning Brand.

Player Attack:

Here comes the Battle Master for another kill, swinging for 11 attack once more. This is more than enough to destroy the Mountain Warg (11 attack – 2 defense = 9 damage).

Gloin had been the leader of this expedition in name, but his bravery and clear thinking in the face of peril had made him the leader in the hearts of the Dwarves as well. As the fallen Warg bled into the snow, the trapped Warg leapt out of the hole, snarling guttural words at Gloin. It was clear that this Warg was speaking directly to him, although none could understand the words. It then launched itself at Gloin, pinning him to the ground. The Dwarf held the Warg’s jaws at bay with his torch, just long enough for the axe to fall once more, sending the Warg into the snow besides Gloin.

ROUND 12 (6 threat in staging area, 0/11 progress on 2B – Snowdrifts, 1 victory point, Active Location – None)

**Staging Area – Caradhras, Mountain Warg, Mountain Goblin**

PLANNING – 13 Threat

Resources: Nori – 3, Gloin – 8, Bifur – 2

Draw: Well-Equipped

New Hand: Will of the West, Hidden Cache, A Test of Will, Legacy of Durin, Miner of the Iron Hills, Narvi’s Belt, Ered Nimrais Prospector, Cram, Narvi’s Belt, Well-Equipped

Planning: I might as well take a chance with Well-Equipped and see if I can get lucky. However, I just end up discarding Dwarven Tomb and Erebor Hammersmith instead. This isn’t the worst result, as I’m in a great position, and any attachment I would’ve drawn would have just been gravy. In a similar way, I will pay 1 from Gloin to draw a card using the Hidden Cache in my hand, ending up with another Erebor Battle Master. This could take my battle prowess to an even more ridiculous level. For now, though, I’ll go ahead and transfer 1 resource from Gloin to Bifur and play Ered Nimrais Prospector, choosing to trigger his response, which discards Will of the West, Zigil Miner, and Dori. There is a method to my madness here, as the Prospector allows you to shuffle 1 card from my discard pile into my deck, and my decks is so small right now that I have a great chance of seeing whatever card I choose very soon. I decide to shuffle A Test of Will into my deck, as the one thing that can really torpedo my chances right now are some well-timed treacheries. Playing the Prospector lowers my threat to 12 and draws Longbeard Map-maker. Finally, I will exhaust both copies of Self Preservation to fully heal Gloin.

Resources: Nori – 3, Gloin – 6, Bifur – 1

QUESTING:

Committing Characters:

I would love to simply blast through the rest of this quest now. So I will commit Bifur (2 willpower), Nori (2 willpower), Longbeard Elder (2 willpower), Arwen (2 willpower), Erebor Record Keeper (1 willpower), Longbeard Map-maker (1 willpower), Longbeard Map-maker (1 willpower), Bofur (2 willpower), Erebor Hammersmith (1 willpower), Ered Nimrais Prospect (1 willpower), Ered Nimrais Prospector (1 willpower) and Longbeard Elder (2 willpower) for a total of 18 willpower against 6 threat in the staging area.

Staging:

Card 1.1: Fell Voices  – This treachery arises again, returning the top 2 Snow cards to the top of the encounter deck. In this case, the only Snow  card in the discard pile is Avalanche, which means that Fell Voices will surge.

Card 1.2: Avalanche – This treachery will commit all remaining ready characters to the quest and exhaust them. Actually, this works to my advantage once again and will make sure that I quest through stage 2 in a single turn. Gloin (2 willpower), Zigil Miner (1 willpower), Erebor Battle Master (0 willpower), and Dwalin (1 willpower) are thus added to the quest.

Resolution:

My final willpower total of 22 against 6 threat means that I will make 16 progress, which clears stage 2B. I now advance to stage 3 – The Mountains’ Peaks, which makes Caradhras the active location and introduces an ugly new effect: characters are discarded if their willpower is ever 0. Unfortunately, this immediately discards my trusty Battle Master. This effect combines nastily with Caradhras, which lowers the willpower of questing characters by 1. The problem here is that I can’t quest with all those 1 willpower Dwarves, otherwise they will instantly die, which leaves only the 2 willpower characters as viable questers. This was the main part of the scenario I was worried about, as I could conceivably get stalled and end up losing here simply by not being able to muster enough willpower to clear Caradhras.

The-Mountains'-Peaks

The company quickly buried their fallen comrade after the battle with the Wargs. The earth was icy and solid as rock, but the skilled miners made short work of it. It was Borin, the axe wielding Dwarf, who came up with the idea of posting the heads of the Wargs on the nearby rock face as a message to all other foes. Leaving the grisly scene behind, Gamil led them forward once more, and the path soon returned them to the main pass. There, they made camp for the night. 

No one could sleep much, as the driving wind howled through the pass and the snow fell in ever thickening flurries, threatening to collapse any shelters they could build. The morning dawned with little light, as the snowdrifts filled the air and chilled every last inch of skin. Weariness and cold threatened to bring many of the Dwarves to their knees, but Gamil led them inexorably forward, with Gloin at his side. As Caradhras neared on their right, Bifur heard the fell voice on the air once more. At first, he thought it must be merely the fog on his brain, but remembering the avalanche that had followed the voice before, he called to the others.

“Run,” he shouted. 

Accustomed to constant danger as they now all were, none questioned the command. Instead, the weary Dwarves summoned every ounce of energy and charged through the deep snow and mounting blizzard. A rumble soon surrounded them on all sides and snow could be seen cascading down the side of Caradhras. The avalanche moved inexorably towards them, but they managed to clear the part of the pass under the fall just before it hit, all except Borin, the most skilled warrior among them. The Dwarves spent several minutes digging through the snow desperately and finally found him, alive but unconscious. Several of the company dedicated themselves to making a small bier so that they could carry him, but his loss would surely make them more vulnerable, and their way would surely be slowed. 

They had finally reached the part of the pass directly under Caradhras, and it remained to be seen whether he would be satisfied with the toll he had exacted thus far.

ENCOUNTER:

Since I will be losing a ton of willpower due to Caradhras’ effect, I need to clear out as much threat from the staging area as I can. Although all of my characters are exhausted, I do have a couple of Cram available. It’s not essential that I necessarily defeat an enemy, just be able to defend against it. Thus, I’ll optionally engage the Mountain Warg.

COMBAT:

Enemy Attack:

I will discard Cram to ready Gloin, who will defend against the Mountain Warg, taking 3 damage (4 attack – 1 defense = 3 damage) and gaining 3 resources. The shadow card is Mountain Troll, which is cancelled by A Burning Brand, but also keeps the Warg engaged with me, which is the ideal result.

As the company struggled more and more against the storm and several began to fall behind, Gloin called a short rest. There wasn’t much firm footing to be found, but a break from the hard march was a small respite. As the others tried to find a solid piece of stone to sit upon or cover against the snow, Gloin remained anxious and on guard, contenting himself with munching on a piece of Cram to keep up his strength.

Bifur was busy once again poring over some of his scrolls. He had found an interested audience in Arwen, who listened as he talked through some of his latest findings.

“Do you remember when the Warg said something to Gloin back there?” he asked, and Arwen simply nodded. “I’ve kept those words in my mind and tried looking up everything Dwarves have on Warg speech.’

“What did you find?” she asked with curiosity.

“Not much, not surprisingly,” he responded. “But I was able to pin down a bit of it.”

He pointed to a few words on a scroll, and Arwen could read them as they were written down in the Common Speech, presumably a translation of Warg speech. The Eye. Arwen shuddered in a way that had nothing to do with the cold.

“There’s more,” he said, pointing to another part of translated text.

Elf daughter. Realization and horror flooded down upon her, worse than any avalanche. This pursuit was no accident.

As the others rested, Gloin spotted a Warg trying to creep up on the company, just behind Arwen, who was too busy in conversation to notice. With a shout to warn the others, he placed himself between her and the creature.

ROUND 13 (1 threat in staging area, 0/13 progress on 3B – The Mountains’ Peaks, 1 victory point, Active Location – Caradhras [0/9 progress])

**Staging Area – Mountain Goblin**

PLANNING – 13 Threat

Resources: Nori – 4, Gloin – 10, Bifur – 2

Draw: Zigil Miner

New Hand: Will of the West, A Test of Will, Legacy of Durin, Miner of the Iron Hills, Narvi’s Belt, Cram, Narvi’s Belt, Erebor Battle Master, Longbeard Map-maker, Zigil Miner

Planning: I will pay 2 from Nori for Zigil Miner, lowering my threat to 12 and drawing yet another Erebor Battle Master. Unfortunately, those Battle Masters are useless for the remainder of the scenario, as they would be immediately discarded. Since Gloin used his Cram last round, I will attach the copy in hand to him to replace it. This should conclude my planning, other than exhausting both copies of Self Preservation to fully heal Gloin.

Resources: Nori – 2, Gloin – 10, Bifur – 2

QUESTING:

Committing Characters:

I can now only commit characters with 2 willpower or greater due to Caradhras’ effect, and must surmount its 9 quest points before I can go back to the normal questing routine. This is the most pivotal part of the scenario, as I don’t have heroes with high willpower like other decks. Fortunately, I do have a great trick to get around this restriction though that will make my life much easier: the Longbeard Map-maker. Using Lore resources, I can boost his willpower before he is committed to the quest, preventing him from being discarded. Thus, I will exhaust Narvi’s Belt to give Gloin the Lore resource icon, then spend all 10 resources to boost the Map Maker up to 11 willpower. I will also add in 3 resources from Bifur, who borrows one from Nori. In total, I will commit the Longbeard Map-maker (14 willpower), Nori (2 willpower), Bifur (2 willpower), Gloin (2 willpower), Arwen (2 willpower), Bofur (2 willpower), Longbeard Elder (2 willpower), and Longbeard Elder (2 willpower) for a ludicrous total of 28 against 1 threat in the staging area. This is a clear example of why Longbeard Map-maker is often a great choice for Dwarf decks. However, Caradhras lowers each questing character’s willpower by 1, for a new total of 20 willpower.

Staging:

Card 1: Fanuidhol (3 threat, 7 quest points) – This is an ideal draw, as it gives me a location with victory points, which is just what I need to close out the quest next round.

Fanuidhol

Resolution:

20 willpower against 4 threat yields 16 progress. This is enough to clear Caradhras and place 7 progress on stage 3B.

Gloin knew that the company stood no chance against the monstrous Warg in their exhausted state, especially with their best warrior incapacitated. 

“Run, all of you!” he cried. “Gamil! Bifur! Lead them to safety. Don’t stop, no matter if Caradhras itself falls upon you!”

There was no time to collect many of their belongings, and the company set off wildly down the pass with valuable supplies left behind. Bifur, however, held onto his scrolls with a vise grip, rushing to catch up with Gamil, who was trying to lead the Dwarves in some kind of orderly fashion. Gloin remained in the rear, fending off the Warg as best as he was able. 

Bifur had studied a map of this part of the pass exhaustively, as it was the most detailed sketch of the area he had in his collection. With this as a guide, he led the company unerringly in the right direction, despite the snow cover blanketing everything. Without his help and Gamil’s experience, the company may have ran straight off a cliff or into a chasm covered by snow, but instead they always found solid footing and the right path forward. As the Warg ceaselessly pursued them, every memory of fatigue was forgotten, and Caradhras was began to recede behind them. However, they could not keep up this pace forever, and the Warg slavered at the sight of legs growing ever more tired…

TRAVEL:

I will travel to Fanuidhol to make sure that I can get the final victory points I need to win. Unfortunately, this again throws up some weird geographical issues, as Fanuidhol actually is east of Caradhras and the quest follows a westward course.

The road ahead now slanted downwards and the westward lands were barely visible below. They had fought their way past Fanuidhol and Caradhras and left the highest peaks behind. Now, their salvation seemed near, but all would be for naught if they met their end at the jaws of a Warg.

ENCOUNTER:

With plenty of characters ready since they could not participate in questing, I will go ahead and engage the Mountain Goblin as well to truly clear out the staging area.

COMBAT:

Enemy Attack:

I will use Cram to ready Gloin and use him to defend against the Warg. The shadow card again has an effect, which keeps the Warg engaged, but is cancelled by A Burning Brand. Gloin takes 3 damage and gains 3 resources. I will declare one of the copies of Ered Nimrais Prospector as the defender against the Mountain Goblin. The 2 attack of the Goblin – the 1 defense of the Prospector causes 1 damage.

Player Attack:

I will attack with Erebor Hammersmith (1 attack), Zigil Miner (1 attack), Longbeard Map-maker (1 attack), Zigil Miner (1 attack), Dwalin (1 attack) and Nori (1 attack, readied through Cram) for a total of 6 attack. This is just enough to destroy the Warg (6 attack – 2 defense = 4 damage).

Nori saw the dark fate ahead of them and rallied several of the Dwarves around him to face the Warg in a final battle, including Nar and Farin. Gloin was in bad shape, as he looked almost dead on his feet from his endless skirmish with the Warg. Finally, the Warg extended one of its claws and batted him to the ground. Meanwhile, a goblin attacked from the side, catching one of the company by surprise and slashing recklessly with its sword. The situation looked grim, as the goblin could be one of an unnumbered horde about to fall upon them. Inspired by the sight of Gloin’s fallen form, Nori’s battle party surrounded the Warg on all sides, hacking at it with pickaxe and smashing it with hammer. The Warg was a fierce foe, but could not contend with so many blows falling from all around, and it crumpled to the ground in a lifeless heap. 

ROUND 14 (0 threat in staging area, 7/13 progress on 3B – The Mountains’ Peaks, 4 victory points, Active Location – Fanuidhol [0/7 progress])

**Staging Area – None**

PLANNING – 13 Threat

Resources: Nori – 2, Gloin – 4, Bifur – 1

Draw: A Test of Will

New Hand: Will of the West, A Test of Will, Legacy of Durin, Miner of the Iron Hills, Narvi’s Belt, Narvi’s Belt, Erebor Battle Master, Longbeard Map-maker, Erebor Battle Master, A Test of Will

Planning: It’s time to end things once and for all. I should have what I need to succeed, so I will simply pay 1 Spirit resource to play Will of the West, shuffling my discard pile into my deck. There isn’t much point to this, other than giving myself more options if my victory is delayed for some reason.

Resources: Nori – 1, Gloin – 4, Bifur – 1

QUESTING:

Committing Characters:

Now that Caradhras is out of the way, I can commit all of my characters to the quest if I so choose. I will commit Bifur (2 willpower), Nori (2 willpower), Longbeard Elder (2 willpower), Arwen (2 willpower), Erebor Record Keeper (1 willpower), Longbeard Map-maker (1 willpower), Longbeard Map-maker (1 willpower), Bofur (2 willpower), Erebor Hammersmith (1 willpower), Ered Nimrais Prospector (1 willpower), Ered Nimrais Prospector (1 willpower), Zigil Miner (1 willpower), Zigil Miner (1 willpower), Dwalin (1 willpower) and Longbeard Elder (2 willpower). This is a grand total of 21 willpower against 0 threat in the staging area. I will pay 1 resource from Nori and Bifur to satisfy Fanuidhol’s requirement.

Staging:

Card 1: Snow Warg (28 engagement cost, 3 threat, 3 attack, 1 defense, 4 hit points) – This is a tough foe, as seen earlier in this scenario, but that doesn’t matter now.

Resolution:

21 willpower against 3 threat yields 18 progress. This is enough to explore Fanuidhol, adding 2 victory points to the victory display, and add the 6 more needed to finish stage 3B. Since I have 6 victory points in my display, I’ve met the requirement for victory!

With the Warg slain, the Dwarven company swept the goblin aside effortlessly. Nori helped Gloin to his feet, who was bloodied, covered in nasty wounds, but smiling in triumph.

“You are a true son of Durin, my friend,” Nori chuckled with relief. “And I do believe that it would take a thousand dragons to kill you.”

“Let’s hope it doesn’t come to that,” Gloin replied.

The company continued down the pass, staggering and barely able to keep their feet, but buoyed by the sight of the mountains around them giving way to mere foothills. Fortunately, there were no more enemies to be seen and they seemed to have been cowed, at least for the present. When the snow finally subsided and the sun cracked through the clouds above, the company gave an uproarious cheer that could doubtless be heard from the top of Caradhras. Only Arwen seemed to remain unmoved and looked deeply troubled.

“You’re not pleased?” Bifur noted.

“I do not grudge the others their happiness,” she answered. “It’s been a long and hard road. Life should be cheered in such times.”

“But you do not feel it in yourself to celebrate, even with home so near?” he pressed.

“Home is near,” she agreed, staring into the distance. “But I fear the road ahead is yet long.”

SCENARIO CONCLUSION:

The first test of the campaign is complete, and I’m overall pleased at the performance of the deck. Not a single hero or unique ally found its way to the dead pile, and only a lone Erebor Hammersmith was lost. On the other hand, it took until the 14th round to complete the quest, which is a veritable eternity in LOTR LCG time, and it took quite awhile for the deck to get up and running at full speed. I fear that scenarios that require a faster start, such as The Watcher in the Water with its low engagement cost tentacles, or Shadow and Flame, might pose a serious challenge. However, such concerns lie in the future. For now, I can rejoice along with Gloin, Bifur, Nori, and the others after surviving endless avalanches and vicious Warg attacks!

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From → Strategy

30 Comments
  1. You could have included some secrecy cards there. 😉 Cool playthrough, your deck seems like a lot of fun! I’ll try it on otcgn, and maybe follow in your footsteps.

    • TalesfromtheCards permalink

      True! The Dimril Stair really dropped me low and Nori kept me there.

  2. I’m just glad the dwarves made it through okay.
    There pace was a tad slower through the mountains than one would expect out of their kind, but perhaps the Elf was responsible for their slow walk.
    Fast over grass and leaf, and even snow, but rocks and crags, perhaps not.

    • TalesfromtheCards permalink

      Ha! Indeed. Perhaps the Dwarves truly have gotten too comfortable sitting in Erebor all those years.

  3. jim permalink

    Nice play through mate! Dwarf decks are over powered as you crushed this scenario. LBMM needs errata to prevent boosting him with so many resources. Personally stopped playing dwarfs as I don’t find them fun and just too powerful with the We are Not Idle and Lure of Moria combo

    • TalesfromtheCards permalink

      Thanks! I agree 100% on LBMM needing errata. The biggest problem with Dwarf decks, in my opinion, that made them overpowered is the lack of limits on so many key cards, Legacy of Durin being the prime opinion. Similarly a simple limit of twice or three times per round for the Map-maker would help to prevent ridiculous willpower boosts.

      In general, the main Dwarf deck I will play now is a version of this miner deck that doesn’t use the most powerful cards. However, I threw them in here, as I’m a bit nervous on how this build will fare against the Balrog at the end.

  4. matt duckworth permalink

    One little thing I noticed in your playthrough. You seemed to be saying that breaking even with willpower in the questing resolution was not considered questing successfully. I thought any time that you matched or exceeded the staging threat that you were considered to have quested successfully even though you make no progress.

    Have I been playing wrong for 2 1/2 years now?

    • TalesfromtheCards permalink

      You have to exceed the threat to be quest successfully. If you are below the threat, then you have quested unsuccessfully. If you match the threat, then you are in a weird limbo where you neither quested successfully or unsuccessfully.

  5. Fantastic job with the narrative! It has a wonderful Tolkienesque feel and I enjoyed the dialogue and interaction between Arwen and the Dwarves as well as your efforts to make sense of the location order and troublesome fit with the Professor’s lore.

    Having never played this iteration of the Dwarf deck, it was also cool to see how it worked, especially that Longbeard Mapmaker. I never really considered his full potential before. Wowee!

    • TalesfromtheCards permalink

      Thanks! Great compliments! I don’t think I fully realized the troublesome location order issue until doing this campaign playthrough. You could conceivably zoom back and forth across the mountain several times during the course of a game! I guess it’s the price you pay for an abstract travel system. By the way, your LOTR LCG Atlas was absolutely invaluable for crafting this narrative, and I’m going to be relying on it heavily for this whole campaign.

  6. Arwen is such a debby-downer

    • TalesfromtheCards permalink

      Bwahahaha! This made me laugh to an unreasonable degree.

  7. HawkRose permalink

    An enjoyable read, sir! I look forward to further entries!

    • TalesfromtheCards permalink

      Thanks! Here’s hoping they don’t all end up as roast Dwarf at the hands of Durin’s Bane!

  8. MPK permalink

    I feel like you got the worst possible luck during the first half (ie. low-engagement enemy, throwing away unexpected courage & self preservation, warg returns to the staging area, drawing hidden caches), but you persevered and were able to build a huge advantage by the end of the scenario. Bravo!

    I do hope that this is an uncharacteristically slow start for this deck though, otherwise you might be in trouble later.

    • TalesfromtheCards permalink

      Agreed. The biggest weakness is definitely getting the defensive setup in place, as there’s so many moving pieces needed (Self Preservation and A Burning Brand) being key. It’ll be nice to add in some Elven elements once I reach Rivendell. I’m definitely nervous about Shadow and Flame though, as I’ve only ever beaten that scenario solo with some pretty specific decks.

  9. Nusse permalink

    Such a great read! I always enjoy reading your playthroughs but this one is really above the others – some paragraphs feel like they could have been written by Tolkien himself.

    • TalesfromtheCards permalink

      Wow! Thanks! That is surely the highest compliment.

  10. Tony F. permalink

    Excellent playthrough and story! I look forward to the continuation of the campaign!

  11. OssderOssmane permalink

    Regarding the Dimril Stair, I always thought it represented going back and trying again. That’s why the locations go back in the deck.

    • TalesfromtheCards permalink

      I thought something similar as well. I considered having them go back for some reason and then try the pass once more, but couldn’t come up with a convincing reason for it and it seemed like it would kill the narrative a bit. It does make the best thematic explanation for the card though.

  12. It took me about 4 days to finally finish reading this. Very well done. It is definitely a strong start to the campaign.

  13. Jan permalink

    Hi, nice story 🙂 I missed that you never used the reaction of the longbeard elder. On purpose?

    • TalesfromtheCards permalink

      Thanks! Yeah, I don’t tend to use the Longbeard Elder’s ability all that much. Most of the time, I’d rather not risk losing the willpower.

  14. riveseneca permalink

    Woooow! Great work and storytelling. Estoy deseoso de poder tener nuevos capitulos!

    I already started a similar experience with the cycle of Mirkwood (although I did not make a story/narration). My experience started with Silvan Elves but, as expected, they were not able to overcome some missions (confict of the Carrock and return to Mirkwood), so I had to meet this problem with a second deck (simulating double player) . We can say that the Silvan Elves had to seek help from their Noldor brothers (or they appeared feeling the danger). I know this is not optimal but at least “narratively” is supported.

    Probably tomorrow I´ll begin a dwarf campaing in Khazad Dum cycle, wish me luck!

    Thank you very much for your work. Courage! and we hope new stories!

    PD: I hope you understand me, sorry for my English. xD

    • TalesfromtheCards permalink

      Gracias por sus palabras buenas! Necesito practicar mi espanol mas.

      Good luck with your campaigns. I’m hoping to keep working on my Dwarrowdelf campaign soon and to continue the story. I’ve been busy with all the current cycle stuff, but now that it’s over, I should have some time until the next cycle begins.

      Don’t worry about your English, it’s much better than my Spanish!

  15. Eldainorn permalink

    How could you attach A Burning Brand to Gloin if he isn’t Lore character? As far as I know ABB is limited to Lore chracters? Or am I missing something?

    All in all it was a great read! In enjoy other campaign narratives just as much. 🙂

    • He exhausted Narvi’s Belt, which gives Gloin the lore resource icon, so A Burning Brand can be attached to Gloin. Through Narvis Belt Gloin becomes a Lore character until the end of the phase, you could say. He then has aLeadership resource icon and, in this case, a Lore one too. So, Narvis Belt serves as a resource smoother and is used for this kind of tricks. 🙂

    • TalesfromtheCards permalink

      What Diedert said. I used Narvi’s Belt to give Gloin a Lore icon. Thankfully, you only need to have the icon when you attach a card, and don’t have to worry about it “falling off” if you lose that icon. Thanks for reading, and I’m glad you enjoy the campaign narratives! They take a great deal of time to write, but they are a lot of fun to produce.

  16. Eldainorn permalink

    I thought so, but I have never played it this way so I had to ask.

    Keep up the good work man, I read almost everything you produce on this site. It is great! 🙂

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