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Elrond’s Counsel: A Journey to Rhosgobel

by on January 28, 2016


Everett returns to take a look at the scenario that made us all fall in love with eagles!    -Ian

After a long break, I am back with more scenario reviews! Today we will be tackling A Journey to Rhogsobel, the third quest in the Mirkwood cycle. I’m trying out a new format, so leave comments below! Reviews will be broken up into three categories: General strategy, cards that can deal with the threat (up to Heirs of Numenor), and theme. I am by no means a theme expert, but I will try my best.




Strategy- Pretty simple here. The goal is to prevent him from taking damage.

Design Choice- Wilyador was obviously  created to serve as a timer, in order to give a sense of urgency to an otherwise easy quest. I like how you can only heal five at once, it makes for good balance.

Cards- Lore of Imladris is a good idea, as is Healing Herbs, though remember that they can only heal five damage a piece. Radagast can also help a lot, though he takes time to build up his healing resources, so there is a better use for him elsewhere (namely, buying Eagles).

Theme- I was unable to find any mention of a Wilyador in the canon. However, we can assume that he is an eagle warrior, as he was wounded in a fight.




Strategy- Once again, fairly easy. Collect as many of these as possible, and do anything to get them. Remember the guarded effect though.

Design Choice- These are the primary sources of healing, and are the main goal of the quest. Adding the guarded keyword instead of surge was smart, as it provides challenge.

Cards- None that I can think of. Direct damage is useful though for removing any pesky guards.

Theme- There is a lot of fluff for this card. Athelas, known in Gondor as kingsfoil, is a healing herb which was used to great effect on Merry, Frodo, and Eowyn during the trilogy. Aragorn is a master of it, but it’s power is known to all of the Dunedain. There, a short summary. I feel like it is fairly well represented, though I wish it could have only been claimed after Rhogsobel was in the victory display.


Encounter Cards

Mirkwood Flock


Strategy- It is important to destroy these as soon as possible. While it may not seem dangerous, it is. Undefended damage should always be avoided, and these often are undefended.

Design Choice- These exist purely for thematic purposes, as it is easy to beat them, but it forces a specific deckbuild.

Cards- Any Eagle or ranged will work, but the important thing is to have a lot of them free.

Theme- These appear to be crows and other fowl birds that may or may not work for Sauron, but are dangerous all the same.


Black Forest Bats


Strategy- These you can leave alone until you can deal with them. Place them at low priority, because one damage won’t hurt if you build a deck right.

Design Choice- These were designed to be yet another low-worries enemy that might spread a little damage around.

Cards- Healing effects, Eagles, and ranged characters.

Theme- Black Forest bats appear briefly in The Hobbit, but they do not directly attack the characters, which was shown quite well in the original version from Passage Through Mirkwood,  but not in this version. The flying restrictions are very fluffy (fluffy meaning “thematic and sticking to the lore and common sense”) though since they are not replicated at all after this scenario, it can feel a little strange to have them fly only in this scenario.


Rhosgobel (Unique)


Strategy- This is important to clear out, as it is indirectly one of the victory conditions for the scenario.

Design Choice- For a scenario with iffy theme, they put quite a few theme cards in. Served to slow down the heroes.

Cards- Northern Tracker, Asfaloth.

Theme- Rhogsobel is the home of Radagast, so it makes sense that you can’t travel there until stage two. However all they had to do was add the words “immune to player card effects” and it would have been fine. But those aforementioned card synergies destroy the thematic effect of the location. And I wish that they had made the ability more interesting, for as it stands, this is essentially just a little thing that you have to go to, but doesn’t have any other importance to it. It would have benefitted the theme to have had the aforementioned (see Athelas) text added to the Athelas cards. Enough rant now, let’s move on!


Forest Grove


Strategy- This is the main method of receiving Athelas, and so despite only having two threat, it is important to explore these whenever you can.

Design Choice- This was designed to make Athelas easier to get, but to provide a different path to do it.

Cards- Any location management card.

Theme- This makes some sense. There are groves in the forest that contain Athelas. But wouldn’t one grove contain enough to heal an eagle if the grove is where lots of Athelas grows. Or is there only one plant in each grove? If so, ecology really breaks down in this instance. And yes, I will nitpick theme. It’s what I do.




Strategy- Heal any questers first, or play Eleanor. Your choice. This card is the Sleeping Sentry of Rhogsobel. This card was essentially added to the quest to deal widespread damage, so knowing it’s there can help you plan ahead.

Cards- Warden of Healing and Elrond!

Theme- Alright, you know what I am going to say. Feel free to groan or sigh now. Done? Alright, now onto the theme, or lack thereof. So we have made several strenuous, exhausting journeys in middle earth, and the heroes regularly exhaust themselves to make progress on a quest, or to fight enemies. So naturally, exhaustion should only matter in this scenario, only on occasion in the scenario, in a scenario where we are traveling a only short distance and mostly scouring the area for Athelas, right? Sometimes I wonder about the theme of these cards. Look, the theme sections are always longer than the strategy. I’m turning into Chime of Eons (40k Conquest LCG on or Running on Italics (Netrunner LCG on


-Swarming Insects


Strategy- There’s not much you can do to prevent this. The ability isn’t that bad though, so no need to worry. There’s worse in the set. It’s the shadow that is important, and obviously, like Despair, the reason for the card’s existence. Dealing three damage to likely Wilyador is huge.

Design Choice- As if the scenario didn’t have enough direct damage. Sigh.

Cards- Warden of Healing and Balin. Those are your best options.

Theme- This is just weird. The insects cause damage to you. I’m going to keep saying it, but why now? Why do the insects affect us now?


Festering Wounds


Strategy- This is the horrible card of the scenario. If you don’t heal enough, you are screwed. If you do heal, this is a free whiff.

Design Choice- This was likely designed to add that final reason to heal, as if we didn’t have enough already.


Theme- You know what I am going to say by now. Let’s just quit while they’re behind.


Other Sets


-Dol Guldur Orcs

Strategy- Never forget the Necromancer’s Reach. It will be painful if you forget.

Design Choice- There are quite a few direct damage effects in here, so I feel that this is a good choice.

Theme- It makes sense that there should be Orcs around the area, after all they are in Southern Mirkwood.


-Spiders of Mirkwood

Strategy- Save your Test of Will for Ungoliant’s Spawn and King Spider. You will need it.

Design Choice- Obviously, the designers felt the scenario wasn’t hard enough, so they added the questing challenges of this set.

Theme- Spiders… in Mirkwood. What’s not to like. Oh right, Mountains of Mirkwood. I plan on doing a Core review after the Mirkwood Cycle, where I will gripe about this.


Dain’s Daily Challenge!

For today’s deckbuilding challenge, I want you to build a deck using Lore Glorfindel, without the Elrond hero. You are only allowed to use cards from Khazad-dum and the Mirkwood and Dwarrowdelf Cycles, and your task is to beat at least one of the following:

  • The Watcher in the Water
  • Journey Along the Anduin
  • Return to Mirkwood
  • Passage through Mirkwood Nightmare
  • And if you are really insane, Shadow and Flame

Send me a decklist and a small game report and it could appear in a later article!


Until next time, when I build a solo deck for this scenario, may Sauron have mercy on you, and may your Saruman decks always use many colors.



  1. KhamulTheEasterling permalink

    Great article! I have indeed built some Lore Glorfindel decks in the past, with the cardpool you listed. However, that “past” was a number of years ago haha. He’s an interesting hero to build a deck around for sure!

  2. Fouilloux permalink

    Can we use card from the core set?

    • Everett Zuras permalink

      Oh sorry. Forgot to mention that. Yes you may.

  3. Traekos77 permalink

    What email should we send the deck/results?

  4. During the second stage of the quest (2B) it says any card effect that heals Wily is removed from the game. Does this mean Radagast must be removed if he heals with his tokens for any amount?

  5. SanguineSleet permalink

    @Everett will you be doing more of these posts?

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