News for June 2010
The Lord (and Lady) of Winter 5
A look at Lords of Winter, an expansion for A Game of Thrones
A Game of Thrones LCG | Published 10 June 2010

Hello and Welcome Back, Loyal A Game of Thrones Fans!

Lords of Winter, the deluxe expansion for House Stark, should be touching down in your friendly local game store (and at the FFG webstore) shortly. For those of you who have been chomping at the bit to unleash the direwolves, you will not have to wait too much longer to put on the Crown of Winter and take over Westeros. Without any further ado, we present our final Lords of Winter preview before the expansion's release.

We've been previewing Lords of Winter quite a bit prior to its release, but rest assured that there are still some surprises waiting in this box for you. Not that we've saved the best for our last preview, but we think you'll find these last two card spoilers to be particularly enjoyable, at least for those of you who like to play on the kinder, gentler side of House Stark.

Of course, House Stark is known for its brutal military strength as well as its merciless direct kills, but on the other side of the coin, House Stark is also a really strong defender. Out of the Core Set you have characters like Ser Rodrik Cassel and Catelyn Stark that provide excellent defense to help you hold back the hordes. Add cards like Vanguard Scouts, Ranger of Winter, and Peasant Defenders, and you've got a deck that can stand back, withstand a punishing assault, and then go for the throat.

Most Stark defenders have abilities that vary on the theme of not kneeling to defend, or having increased strength on defense. Today's cards stray from those themes a little, but still provide the kind of defensive boosts your Stark deck can really use.

To start we have the Lord of Winterfell and Warden of the North, Eddard "Ned" Stark. This version of Ned has the usual cost, strength, and icon spread, as well as his customary Renown. Where he differs is that unlike the Deadly Core Set version, this version lowers an attacker's claim to zero while he is defending. If you're on the opposite side of the board of a standing Ned Stark, unless you've got something to kill or kneel him, or raise the claim of your challenge, you can pretty much write off any military or power challenges you might have been planning. Also, since Ned is still Noble-crested, a Distinct Mastery can stand him up for a challenge on his controlling player's turn, so he can attack and gain power for renown and then go on the defensive, or vice versa. Granted, this version of Ned still can't defend against intrigue challenges, but fortunately there is also his Lady wife, Catelyn Stark.

The Core Set version of Catelyn is a perennial favorite in lots of Stark decks because of her ability to cancel the strength of an attacker in intrigue or power challenges. As an opponent going into a challenge where Catelyn is on the defensive, you're going to have to commit a lot more strength to intrigue and power challenges to break through. The Lords of Winter version of Catelyn is trickier. Now she lies in wait in your hand, waiting for the unsuspecting opponent to commit to a weak or underpowered intrigue or power challenge, before jumping out and successfully defending. Catelyn can be immensely frustrating when you think you've got a challenge in the bag and suddenly there she is. What makes her even more aggravating to an attacker is that at the end of the phase, assuming she hasn't been killed or discarded through other means, she returns to the relative safety of her controller's hand.

With the release of Lords of Winter, those who oppose House Stark will have that much more to worry about in the form of Ned and Catelyn, but hopefully you'll be able to figure out something good to scoot around them. Whatever you do, we hope you enjoy Lords of Winter, including all the fun non-Stark cards that come with it, as it rolls into your local game store and into the A Game of Thrones card pool. Until next week!

Based on George R.R. Martin's bestselling fantasy epic A Song of Ice and Fire, A Game of Thrones: The Card Game, playable by 2-4 players, brings the beloved heroes, villains, locations, and events of the world of Westeros to life through innovative game mechanics and the highly strategic game play. The Living Card Game format allows players to customize their gaming experience with monthly Chapter Pack expansions to the core game.

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Comments (5)

Published: 6/15/2010 11:48:48 PM

why is there no mention of the new ned!? i love the idea of canceling claim TWO: power or especially military challenges!!! the only thing that i could think of trumping this would be "burning sword"/winter combo!

Published: 6/12/2010 1:24:32 PM

Catelyn is good, but the core set one is just sick - I can't see myself replacing her, but it's always good to give her a duplicate :)

Published: 6/10/2010 8:32:28 PM

I'm a big fan of the "bounce" characters, and Catelyn is really good in this regard. In some ways, since you can her in the challenge for free, she can be superior to Core Set but not by much. I guess the deck itself would be the deciding factor of which Catelyn to use.

Published: 6/10/2010 4:59:08 PM

Catelyn looks cool, but sure is hard to justify taking Core Set Catelyn out of my deck...

Published: 6/10/2010 4:55:32 PM

Next week:

Whoooo let dogs out?!

Who?! Who? Who! Who! Who?!

Whoooooo let dogs out?! ^^ 

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