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Hey all, welcome to Deck Tech 44! (If I can't keep up a weekly schedule, that means the intro has to change, right?)
This deck is set up to rush through a side quest in the first, and possibly even the second, round of the game. To that end, there's a host of turn one willpower boosters (Elrond's Counsel, Silvan Refugee, Celduin Traveler, and Ithilien Lookout). Some of these even allow you to look at the top card of the encounter deck, which will help you more precisely calibrate your willpower commitment.
As for the side quests? Gather Information is definitely the best side quest available for this deck. It's cheap (0 cost), easy to complete (only 4 quest points!), and it lets you go grab the thing your game needs the most in that particular moment.
I've got a second side quest in here, too, but it's mostly a backup. Double Back is as cheap and easy to complete as Gather Information, but its benefit is just not quite as useful. It's in here to pull a card out of your deck if you happen to mulligan into Gather Information before Thurindir's ability, but you can pull it out when you complete Gather Information if you think you can finish a second side quest.
Quests: The Mumakil and Foundations of Stone
I'm probably going to be dropping the play-by-play style game recaps here. They take up so much more time than a higher level overview.
I did play a few quests with this deck, though I'll admit that my time crunch meant they were just the quests sitting assembled on my desk!
In The Mumakil, we got off to a great start. I finished Gather Information in round one, and then Double Back in the next round. I had basically everything I needed in my opening hand, or I'd have grabbed Light of Valinor or Asfaloth instead.
Unfortunately, I stalled out a bit on stage 2. When your threat is too low to clear out two enemies in a single round, and the stage just keeps pumping them out two at a time...
I caught my mumak, but it took fifteen rounds. I could have probably gotten there faster if I were a bit more aggressive about traveling to locations, but clearing them with Asfaloth and guaranteeing I didn't have to deal with two mumak seemed like a good idea. Oh, and I killed that pesky tiger twice.
After that, Foundations of Stone just turned out to be pathetically easy. I cleared it on round 8, after finishing both of my side quests. I definitely could have sped up stage 1 with some judicious use of the Cave Torch, but all the rest of them took one round max.
It helps that Asfaloth and Light of Valinor don't get washed away in the flood on stage 3. Apparently elven horses are great swimmers.
- You don't have to discard the card you see with Celduin Traveler or Ithilien Lookout if it's the right type. Especially turn one, if it means you can guarantee that you finish your side quest.
- Quest with Glorfindel turn one. I don't care about that one single threat point, and neither should you. Unless you know, for sure, that you're going to finish your side quest without him.
- A Good Harvest and Heed the Dream don't work together, no matter how much you want them to. :(
- Don't overcommit to Silvan Refugees. You probably want to stick to one out at a time, so you don't lose too much if you lose another character.
- Eowyn should pay for most of your neutral expenses. Her resource load is incredibly cheap, if you have one open for Feint.
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