Warden of Arnor is now on Patreon

Hello readers,

I’ve been writing this LotR LCG blog since March 2015. I do it because I love the game and the community, and I like to contribute my thoughts. That said, as much as I enjoy it, I also put a lot of time and work into it, easily comparable to a part-time job, and when I don’t have much regular income it becomes harder to justify that when I could be instead looking for an actual part-time job. The alternative is to see if I can actually get some income from the blog, via Patreon and stop my internal debate.
I don’t mean to sound mercenary – as I say, I love the game and I enjoy writing the blog. I intend to continue it regardless, for at least as long as FFG continue making the game and quite possibly even longer. Money would be a nice bonus though.

Getting some money from Patreon pledges should also allow me to make some improvements to my content since it can help fund some upgrades in terms of video-editing software, recording equipment, etc.
I hope some of my long-time readers may be willing to spare me a few pennies just to help out with what already exists, but as you’ll see on the page I am offering some patron rewards in the form of behind-the-scenes peeks, patron credits in videos, the chance to choose topics for me to write about and also to join me for videos or twitch streams. I would also welcome any suggestions for other patron rewards people would be interested in – I struggled for a while to think of what rewards I could offer that potential patrons might want, and the easiest solution is just to ask you guys directly.

Just to be clear to readers who aren’t willing or able to give me money – you will not lose out by this. I won’t be withholding content I’d otherwise be posting publicly just so I can offer it as a reward to my patrons. But if I can get some money from this then it’ll help ensure the blog not only continues but also improves over time, so everyone should get some benefit.
Thank you to everyone who enjoys what I do, as much as I like throwing my opinions out into the void it feels better to know people are reading them. Thank you especially if you like my content enough to become a patron, but if you can’t then I hope you continue to enjoy everything regardless.

https://www.patreon.com/wardenofarnor

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Deck: Speed Greater Than Any Wind

My latest deck was once again inspired by one of my card review, in this case Radagast. I was inspired in much the same way I was with the Master of Lore, because I’ve found Radagast to be somewhat similar to the Master of Lore in that he’s useful once he’s in play but difficult to justify spending early resources on. The utility once he is in play might be worth it though with the right setup.

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Breaking the Game: Side-Quests

It has been a while since I last did a Breaking the Game post, but this is another somewhat more wide-ranging one. The Lost Realm deluxe expansion introduced the concept of side-quests to the game, and understandably some quests which were designed well before the addition of side-quests to the game were really not properly designed to accommodate them, so I’m going to go through a few of those cases here.
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The Line Unbroken – N12: Nightmare Flight from Moria

Flight from Moria was always an interesting quest with some problems in it. I think it definitely benefitted from the transition into Nightmare, but there were still some problems left unfixed. The main premise of the quest is thematically great, but the execution in the encounter deck is spotty and some cards can cause massive difficulty swings. I’d be pretty interested to see how a quest like this would turn out if it was designed now with the more experienced and mature design philosophy that has turned out the last few cycles of fantastic quests. That pipe dream aside though, let’s get into Nightmare Flight from Moria.
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6 AP Challenge: Treachery of Rhudaur/The Dread Realm

6 AP Challenge: Introduction
6 AP Challenge: Return to Mirkwood & The Long Dark
6 AP Challenge: The Dunland Trap/Across the Ettenmoors Preamble
6 AP Challenge: The Dunland Trap/Across the Ettenmoors
6 AP Challenge: Treachery of Rhudaur/The Dread Realm Preamble

So as planned on Sunday I played through the last two quests in the 6 AP Challenge, Treachery of Rhudaur and The Dread Realm. The playthroughs themselves went less according to plan, but I made it through. Actually, the first thing to go not quite as planned was me winning Treachery of Rhudaur on the first attempt – it would’ve felt more satisfying if I’d started with a loss and then bounced back to a victory rather than starting by winning and then continuing to demonstrate that that wasn’t a result I could consistently repeat. Dread Realm was a bit more as intended in this regard…
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The Line Unbroken – N11: Nightmare The Seventh Level

Seventh Level was the first Nightmare quest I ever played, and I beat it first try, which gives it something of a special place in my heart. In truth, it’s not an overly difficult quest, though the Nightmare deck does introduce some tricky elements which can easily screw you over depending on when they hit and in what combination. Regardless, I do expect this to be a fun one.
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Deck: The Path to Redemption

A little while back I was discussing thematically odd options for a campaign, like bringing a Harad deck to Journey to the Crossroads, or Na’asiyah to Siege of Gondor, and it occurred to me that we now have a three hero lineup all of whom would be traditionally considered the enemies of the free peoples of Middle Earth – Kahliel as one of the Haradrim, Na’asiyah as a Corsair, and Grima working for Saruman and Isengard. So having had that thought I just had to try and put a deck together.

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The Line Unbroken – N10: Nightmare Into the Pit

Coming back to Nightmare again I had a slightly tricky decision about sequence. The thing is, the Nightmare packs for the Hobbit sagas were released as Game Night Kits roughly parallel to the Khazad-Dum and Dwarrowdelf Nightmare packs being released immediately to PoD. So I debated for a bit whether I go in order of when the Nightmares were released or by the order of the initial packs. If the timings didn’t match up as well as they did I might have made a different decision, but the impression I got looking at the timings came down to NM Over Hill and Under Hill having the same card pool as NM Khazad-Dum, and NM On the Doorstep having the same as NM Dwarrowdelf, so it’s close enough that I think it makes sense to just go straight through Khazad-Dum and Dwarrowdelf, then go for the Hobbit quests. Which brings me to Nightmare Into the Pit.
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Slight Reorganisation

You may have noticed that the main menu has gone through a few changes. I decided that as I keep thinking of new potential article series, rather than keep sorting everything just by series and then miscellaneous I should instead sort by category. So the different categories can potentially contain one or more article series as well as miscellaneous posts which fall under the same umbrella. This is just an explanatory post to point out where things are now in case you’re confused.

The Line Unbroken and Deckbuilding Challenges I have kept as separate menu items, partly because they potentially range between more than one category but mostly because they’re the biggest series and I felt they still deserved their own spaces, The Line Unbroken in particular being extensive enough to overwhelm anything else put in the same category as it.

Decks, Archetype Analysis and Deck Spring Cleaning are all categorised under Deckbuilding.

Design Debates and Breaking the Game are both categorised under Game Design.

The Card Focus category doesn’t contain any existing named series. It contains all the posts focused on examining a small set of specific cards for whatever reason (and purely on their own individual merits rather than making a more general point about the design of the game). So this includes things like when I did my Hero Awards, looking at the Hero Championship, Top 10 lists etc.

The Miscellaneous Articles page is still there but some of the posts linked from it are now on other pages sorted by category along with everything else. Those that remain I’ve subdivided into posts on the subjects of Strategy, News, and Random Other. If I write more on those subjects it’s possible Strategy and News could end up with their own pages, but as of now they’re not things I’ve covered in so much detail.

I may still want to tweak things with this adjusted layout, so any feedback will be welcomed.

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6 AP Challenge: Treachery of Rhudaur/The Dread Realm Preamble

6 AP Challenge: Introduction
6 AP Challenge: Return to Mirkwood & The Long Dark
6 AP Challenge: The Dunland Trap/Across the Ettenmoors Preamble
6 AP Challenge: The Dunland Trap/Across the Ettenmoors

This Sunday I will be hopefully finishing off the 6 AP Challenge by playing Treachery of Rhudaur and The Dread Realm. I expect these final two quests to be the two most difficult for me to actually win, but I think I should be able to manage it. Continue reading

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