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Method of Defending Poll Results

by on November 20, 2015



The current poll has been running for quite some time now so it seems like a good moment to bring it to a close. When I originally came up with the question, “What is your preferred method of defending?”, I wanted to see whether my perceptions of the current meta were accurate. To be more specific, I had long suspected that chump blocking had ceased to be the main defensive strategy, as it often was in the early life of the game, for two main reasons: 1) the increasing prevalence of shadow effects that punish players when a character is destroyed and 2) the growing number of strong defensive heroes and allies. The results of the poll, which received 938 votes, are as follows:

* 57% of respondents chose “Strong hero defender”

* 15% of respondents chose “Chump blocking”

* 13% of respondents chose “Strong ally defender”

* 7% of respondents chose “Avoiding combat altogether”

* 7% of respondents chose “Cancelling attacks”

* 2% of respondents chose “Taking attacks undefended”


The results of the poll are overwhelming. At least among those players who visit this site and vote in polls, using a strong hero defender is by far the preferred method of defending, with over half of respondents choosing that option. Once upon a time, during the Core Set days, our best option in this regard was Denethor, perhaps Aragorn. Now, we have such heavyweights as Beregond, Boromir, Erkenbrand, Elrohir and more, along with strong defensive attachments such as Gondorian Shield and Blood of Numenor. Often, defending with a hero is the best option in order to avoid shadow effects that punish defending with a chump, one way or another. However, chump blocking did still pull in 15% of the vote, and there are certainly times when it is appropriate to use this tactic, and certain deck styles, such as Rohan, are particularly suited for this purpose. The category of “Strong ally defender” is perhaps the latest of the options to actually become viable, and may in fact be the preferred option of the future. We are getting more and more allies that can actually defend as well as heroes, including figures such as ally Treebeard, the Derndingle Warrior, and the Longbeard Sentry. In a way, this option is the best of both worlds, avoiding the potential penalties of chump blocking, but saving heroes for other purposes (and minimizing the consequences if they do happen to be destroyed).

All in all, the reality is that there is no best means of defense, and any particular player will not use just one of these strategies exclusively. Being able to choose the right approach for the situation and your deck (including even rolling the dice now and then with undefended attacks) is what really matters. That being said, it’s time for the next poll, as we revisit favorite heroes now that a good amount of time has passed.

Readers, what are your thoughts on these results? Share your thoughts below!



From → Poll Results

  1. ChasmosaurusChris permalink

    Thanks for the results. I voted on hero defender. I’ve never been big on dedicated ally defenders as they don’t tend to be cheap. If they do end up dying you’re just throwing away resources. However I have to agree with your remark. They’re starting to get really good. I’ve recently used warden of helms deep and derndingle warrior, and have been impressed. I think it helps that enemy attacks seem to have plateaued recently.

  2. I’m definitely starting to come around on using Derndingles and Treebeard to defend, but there’s something really satisfying about watching enemy after enemy bouncy off Beregond’s impregnable Gondorian Shield.

  3. I had a hobbit/mablung/ent deck I’ve been running with good success and the Derndingle(sp?) has been simply amazing.

  4. Nusse permalink

    I voted “avoiding combat altogether” because that option was the closest to direct damage, which is always a lot of fun.

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