|The Lord of the Rings: The Card Game | Published 03 November 2011|
Frodo saw her whom few mortals had yet seen; Arwen, daughter of Elrond, in whom it was said that the likeness of Lúthien had come on earth again; and she was called Undómiel, for she was the Evenstar of her people. Long she had been in the land of her mother’s kin, in Lórien beyond the mountains, and was but lately returned to Rivendell to her father’s house.
–J.R.R. Tolkien, The Fellowship of the Ring
Having traversed the freezing snows and treacherous mountain pass of The Redhorn Gate, the heroes of Middle-earth continue their winding journey through the hills west of the Misty Mountains. But the way is long and perilous, and dangers await those sent to escort Arwen Undómiel along the Road to Rivendell.
Road to Rivendell introduces a deadly new encounter mechanic, Ambush, that changes the way you encounter enemies and forces the first player to be wary as your heroes tread their way westward and northward through the hills west of the Misty Mountains. Each time an enemy with the Ambush keyword is revealed from the encounter deck, each player makes an immediate engagement check with it, starting with the first player. Enemies with Ambush quickly pounce on players who fail to keep their threat low, and the first player, especially, has reason to tread lightly. In a four-player game, it’s possible to reveal four enemies and watch with terror as your heroes stumble into the middle of their ambush.
Not only does this exciting new mechanic change the way players have to consider who to commit to the Quest and who to leave ready for defense, it makes the Forced effects of some of the new enemies all the nastier. For example, a band of Orc Raiders (Road to Rivendell, 50) forces the discard of two attachments whenever they engage with a player. Woe to the player relying upon a single Citadel Plate (Core Set, 40) to provide Gimli (Core Set, 4) enough additional Hit Points to survive his wounds! Even when you have the additional attachments to discard, you find your options slipping away, and Rivendell seems farther and farther away…
As your fellowship nears the Last Homely House west of the Mountains, Road to Rivendell also presents new support for Elven characters.
The finely-crafted Rivendell Blade (Road to Rivendell, 31) plays on either a hero or an ally, but only if the character is a Noldor or Silvan Elf. As fearsome enemies stage ambushes to waylay your party, each of your Elves armed with a Rivendell Blade can strike true to make short work of their foes, and your party will need to cut through the opposition quickly in order to escort Arwen safely to her father’s home.
Those heroes who start down the Road to Rivendell must be ever on their guard, for their journey is long and fraught with dangers. Begin your journey when Road to Rivendell releases in the first quarter of 2012!
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.
Love the Ambush mechanic. I also love the brutal forced effect on the Orcs. This game gets better all the time (perhaps with a hickup for Emyn Muil).
I like Rivendel Blade and that it reduces the enemies defence to the end of the phase not just for the attack. Now if only there were some way to attack more than once ....... ;-P
By the way, who shall we speculate is the character on the cover of the pack? Could we possibly be seeing a glimpse of Elrond's twin sons Elladan and Elrohir?
Seems it would be required to have an alternate Arwen since the APs are supposedly exclusive to themselves. I thought that mabye she is separated from the party temporarily but this quote from the above article hints that we'll still be escorting:
"But the way is long and perilous, and dangers await those sent to escort Arwen Undómiel along the Road to Rivendell.
I was also wondering if maybe the designers would combine the RHG encounter set with this one but it wouldn't make sense, really.
All in all, I'm loving the Rivendell Blade and the Ambush mechanic is going to make the game quite challenging in solo mode.
Very interesting article - the new mechanic is interesting, and the Forced effect of Orc Raiders is very nasty. I also like that we're seeing something other than +X Attack Strength on weapons!
Since we're still escorting Arwen to Rivendell during this quest (much as we will have done in The Redhorn Gate), are we about to see our first alternate version of an existing character?
Ambush mechanic sounds exciting!
Cool! I really want to see some allies and heroes though...
Rivendell Blade is sick. :)
The blade is so cooool!!! I missed weapons in the last packs.
The Rivendell Blade is very sweet!
Like the way it reduces the defence of the enemy instead of just boosting your attack value...