News for February 2014
Risk Some Light
An Updated The Lord of the Rings: The Card Game FAQ Is Now Available
The Lord of the Rings: The Card Game | Published 06 February 2014

“If there are any to see, then I at least am revealed to them,” he said. “I have written Gandalf is here in signs that all can read from Rivendell to the mouths of Anduin.”
   
–J.R.R. Tolkien, The Fellowship of the Ring

As a Living Card Game®, The Lord of the Rings: The Card Game grows and evolves with each new expansion. Currently, with the conclusion of the Against the Shadow cycle, the game has grown to include nearly forty scenarios with more to come. Additionally, players have the option to play scenarios in Easy Mode or Nightmare Mode, meaning that your journeys in Middle-earth may well be as varied, interesting, and memorable as the realm’s terrain and people.

However, with all of this growth and diversity come a measure of complexity that sometimes demands clarification. To that end, the game’s developers have updated its FAQ (pdf, 13.6 MB). The FAQ for The Lord of the Rings: The Card Game is a living document, subject to changes, and it is meant to accompany the core rulebook (low-res pdf, 5.6 MB) and rulesheets (available on the game’s support page) as an official rules document.

To offer more of an explanation of the changes presented in this updated FAQ, and the rationale behind them, we present these words from the developers.

The Lord of the Rings: The Card Game Developers on the New FAQ

Greetings, The Lord of the Rings: The Card Game players!

It’s certainly an exciting time for The Lord of the Rings: The Card Game! The Voice of Isengard deluxe expansion and The Ring-maker cycle have now been announced and are on their way, and they will bring a lot of new challenges and adventures players can look forward to. Meanwhile, The Road Darkens Saga Expansion is on its way, and players will be able to travel further along his epic journey in Campaign Mode.

Since the release of The Black Riders and the conclusion of the Against the Shadow cycle, we’ve had a lot of time to go over some of the more commonly asked questions. We’ve also had time to consider how the existing card pool might lead us into the future, and we have updated the FAQ to include some new rules clarifications and errata, all of which should help ensure the game’s continued good health and growth.

Let’s dive right in with the errata. The new FAQ includes four errata. The first two are meant to clarify some of the effects in The Blood of Gondor, specifically on stage 1B of The Ambush (The Blood of Gondor, 117) and the location The Cross-roads (The Blood of Gondor, 123).

The passive effect on The Ambush is meant to give players the choice between either turning each of their hidden cards faceup, or taking an additional hidden card. The new errata includes the word “either,” making it clearer that the player has the option of doing one or the other. Additionally, we’ve also updated the Rule Clarification section to clarify the difference between when a card uses the structure “…must X or Y” versus the structure “…must either X or Y.” As for The Cross-roads, this location’s effect is intended to supersede any keywords on the quest, so the new version of The Cross-roads reads: “The current quest card gains siege (and loses battle).”

Our next two errata are intended to balance two player cards that have either proven to be problematic, or have the potential of becoming problematic in the light of future releases. The design team does not make either of these errata lightly; each has been carefully scrutinized and considered, and we feel that these changes are important for the game’s long-term health. The first of these errata is Erebor Battle Master (The Long Dark, 79). This card has received an errata to put its ability and stats on par with other allies at a similar cost. He now reads: “Erebor Battle Master gets +1 attack for each other Dwarf ally you control.” This retains the spirit of the card’s original design while the change of the word “character” to “ally” gives the Erebor Battle Master the potential to still become the powerhouse it was intended to be, but not without a bit more work on the part of the player. We feel that this card is now in a much better position for the game’s overall health.

The last errata is to Expert Treasure Hunter (On the Doorstep, 17), and it is very minor. This card now reads: “Attach to a hero. Limit 1 per hero.” This subtle but important restriction means that a single hero cannot attach three copies of this card to himself, forcing you to spread out your treasure-hunting abilities if you wish to draw multiple cards through its ability. More importantly, it means that a single player in a multi-player game can never control more than three copies of Expert Treasure Hunter, except in Saga Expansions.

There are now nearly forty unique scenarios in The Lord of the Rings: The Card Game, and occasionally there will be situations where questions about card interactions arise. We’ve updated the Rule Clarification and Q&A sections of the FAQ to answer many of the recent questions we’ve received through our webpage and from our playtesters. We’ve addressed effects that target the “next” player in a one-player game, and whether Sam Gamgee’s ability can trigger more than once if many enemies engage simultaneously. We’ve also included an expanded definition of the “Immune to player card effects” phrase, to further clarify how this ability interacts with player cards.

We hope that this updated version of our FAQ find these changes and clarifications helpful for their play experience. The design team for The Lord of the Rings: The Card Game is very excited for the game’s future, and hope that you are too!

Caleb Grace
Matthew Newman

Thanks, guys!

The new FAQ for The Lord of the Rings: The Card Game is now available on the game’s support page, as is a low-res printer-friendly version. Download your copy today.

The Lord of the Rings: The Card Game is a cooperative card game that puts 1-2 players (or up to four with an additional Core Set) in control of the most powerful characters and artifacts of Middle-earth. Players will select heroes, gather allies, acquire artifacts, and coordinate their efforts to face Middle-earth’s most dangerous fiends. The Living Card Game format allows players to customize their gaming experience with monthly Adventure Pack expansions to the core game.

    
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