The Line Unbroken – G8: The Siege of Annuminas

In a lot of my thinking ahead about The Line Unbroken, pretty much up to the point where I was working on City of Corsairs, I kind of forgot that Siege of Annuminas existed. Which is strange since I’ve said a few times that it’s my favourite quest in the game – every time I question whether that’s actually true, but I can’t think of another quest I like better, provided I’m in the right mood for a bit of a challenge.

I should state up front that while I like in The Line Unbroken to show off all the interesting mechanics of quests, such as my decision to do all the LotR saga quests in campaign mode, I will not be doing Siege of Annuminas in Epic Multiplayer. As much as I want to show off those cool extra mechanics, figuring out a sensible means of playing an Epic Multiplayer game on OCTGN and recording it would be a challenge to say the least. I’d like to do it at some point, not least because I’ve actually never played Epic Multiplayer, but it’d be pretty complicated so I’m going to file it away as something I might come back to at a later date.

With Epic Multiplayer being set to one side then, we come to looking at the challenges posed by the quest since I need to build decks for it. And it happens that I’ve done a bit of a breakdown of the quest before. Nothing more to add at this point, I’d say my initial impressions were pretty accurate. So basicaly what I take from this is that there aren’t any really specific challenges, just be good at all the standard stuff. Location control can certainly be helpful, though it’s less required in 2-player than 3. The presence of Caught in the Press means a potential preference for questing allies with more than 1 hit point. I do need to be prepared for a fair bit of combat.
Beyond that, I can be guided by some of the cards I haven’t made use of and would like to, and also by thematic considerations, which are an interesting point – quite aside from the fact the quest punishes you for leaving enemies alive, making Dunedain particularly bad at defending Annuminas, I’m under the impression Annuminas was abandoned after the fall of Arnor, which is a long way outside the usual time-frame of this game. So if I’m concerned about thematic considerations, most of the heroes and allies I could potentially use are not alive, with the exceptions being all the elves of course. So I figured I’d just go with that.

The Kin of Elros


Allies (15):
Mithlond Sea-watcher x3
Warden of the Havens x3
Master of the Forge x3
Imladris Caregiver x3
Gildor Inglorion x1
Galdor of the Havens x1
Erestor x1

Attachments (18):
Vilya x3
Cloak of Lorien x3
Lembas x3
Elven Mail x3
Elven Spear x2
Rivendell Blade x2
Rivendell Bow x2

Events (18):
Captain’s Wisdom x3
Feint x3
Revealed in Wrath x3
Daeron’s Runes x3
Gildor’s Counsel x3
The Evening Star x3

Thoughts: Given the twins’ dependence on having spare resources, it doesn’t initially seem natural to put them in a tri-sphere deck, but since Elrond can pay for allies of all spheres and save resources by using Vilya, it’s actually pretty reasonable. And since this is a largely combat-focused deck, I don’t mind so much starting at 33 threat. The resources needed to fund the twins’ abilities can also be provided in part by Captain’s Wisdom.
In deference to the aforementioned thematic concerns, and setting myself a certain level of challenge, I’ve not included Steward of Gondor. Also all my allies are Noldor, though that can work out pretty well for other reasons. Also when building the decks I wasn’t sure about the relative timing of the fall of Arnor and the arrival of the Istari, so I omitted Sneak Attack Gandalf. Harsh restrictions, and the latter unnecessary as the Istari had been around for several centuries by the fall of Arnor, but never mind, I think I can work within them.
Obviously the twins are the primary source of combat power for the deck and indeed the table, but they can be supplemented by the allies, in particular the Sea-watchers and Wardens, since I do have some means of discarding from hand to activate their abiilities for defence or attack as applicable. Also, it’s worth noting that all the combat attachments except the Elven Spear can go on allies as well as heroes. Aside from the permanent board-state additions of course I also have Feints, and Revealed in Wrath may come in handy at times to supplement combat by removing annoying Forced effects on certain enemies.
The other things (besides the draw) do provide some supplemental questing assistance, with little bits of questing power from other allies (also healing), Gildor’s Counsel of course is very useful for keeping the staging area from getting out of hand, and The Evening Star is the one bit of location control I managed to fit in.

Friends of the Faithful

Arwen Undomiel
Cirdan the Shipwright

Allies (14):
Imladris Caregiver x3
Imladris Stargazer x3
Sailor of Lune x3
Elven Jeweller x3
Glorfindel x1
Lindir x1

Attachments (21):
Nenya x3
Narya x3
To the Sea! To the Sea! x3
Mirror of Galadriel x3
Silver Harp x3
Light of Valinor x3
Unexpected Courage x3

Events (15):
A Test of Will x3
Elven-light x3
Elrond’s Counsel x3
Fair and Perilous x3
The Galadhrim’s Greeting x2
Lords of the Eldar x1

Thoughts: I initially started designing these decks a bit differently, until I realised that I’d got two of the Three Elven Rings, and wouldn’t it be nice to include all three? So I brought in Galadriel, leading to the second deck ending up mono-Spirit. Albeit thanks to the Lore icon from Nenya, I do have those extra Caregivers to make sure I’m OK for healing (especially as this deck has more scope for freely discarding cards).
So, we have a fair bit of questing power, a lot of draw as is standard for Noldor, between Mirror(/Harp), Cirdan, Galadriel and Elven-light, and a lot of stuff that can work to support the first deck. Of course Galadriel and Arwen’s abilities can be targeted cross-table if need be, and so can To the Sea! To the Sea!, which will further help that deck to not spend too many of the twins’ resources and save them for combat instead. Between Light and Courage we have 4 action advantage cards, and this deck only needs 1, so Cirdan can both quest and use Narya, the others being intended to get more uses out of the first deck’s heroes. The Galadhrim’s Greeting is intended to keep the first deck’s threat under control if needed, Fair and Perilous as a combat boost is obviously expected to be for the first deck as well, and Lord of the Eldar will just boost every single character on the table when I play it, so great for big significant rounds.

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