Summon the Dúnedain

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Authraw 3459

This is a thematic deck built for an ongoing series on my blog, Darkling Door.

Theme: Beravor gathers the Dúnedain

Played Against: Nightmare The Treachery of Rhudaur

"Where now are the Dúnedain, Elessar, Elessar? Why do thy kinsfolk wander afar? Near is the hour when the Lost should come forth, And the Grey Company ride from the North. But dark is the path appointed for thee: The Dead watch the road that leads to the Sea."

Gandalf, The White Rider, The Two Towers

Strategy

A well-rounded Secrecy / Dúnedain deck built to dump absurd numbers of Dúnedain Allies on the board in the first few rounds.

Tips

  • The free Attachment from the Grey Wanderer Contract should be Song of Kings, so you can pay for the Events. If you end up drawing it in your starting hand, you can fish out Strider instead.
  • The card you want to see early is Timely Aid. Mulligan for it, and draw aggressively for it.
  • Once you have at least one 4-cost and one 3-cost Ally down, you're looking to use A Very Good Tale to chain into more Allies. If you're lucky, you can repeat this with another copy of A Very Good Tale for even more shenanigans.
  • Most turns, you're going to be drawing with Beravor's ability and then triggering The Grey Wanderer to give her 2 more resources and ready her during the Planning Phase.
  • Once you get a few copies of Resourceful into play, you can start to pay for expensive Allies outright. Don't forget that the first card you play each Planning Phase does not require a resource match due to the Contract!
  • Gandalf is more of a late-game card, often paid for directly to help close out the quest. I wouldn't generally choose him as a Timely Aid target unless I have no more permanent options.
  • Gather Information is the only Side Quest in the deck that can activate Vigilant Dúnadan's ability. Some quests will provide you with enough Side Quests from the encounter deck that the chance of discarding your only copy isn't that bad. Against other quests, you might be able to do without his ability. If you really need it, consider adding a few more Side Quests to the deck.

Sideboard

This deck is well-tuned for solo play. In multiplayer, it may be fun to take on a slightly more combat-oriented role by switching out Greyflood Wanderer and East Road Ranger for Guardian of Arnor and Fornost Bowman.

► For more analysis, check out my blog post on this deck.

3 comments

Jul 29, 2020 Alonewolf87 526

Have you considered Andrath Guardsman and/or Guardian of Arnor instead of the Vigilant Dúnadan? For some attack power Northern Bowmaster. Dunedain Lookout could be nice too. Also if you go for the Song of Kings route you might consider Ranger Summons.

Ranger of Cardolan and A Very Good Tale is a neat combo. You might consider adding one copy of Will of the West since you might end up discarding a lot of stuff.

Jul 29, 2020 doomguard 192

i would consider 1-2 wild stallions, make the main defender much better, or put on caleb it could even be of more use ;)

Jul 30, 2020 Authraw 3459

@Alonewolf87 @doomguard After some early tests, I ended up skewing the Ally cost hard towards the expensive ones, leaving the 2- and 1-cost ones on the cutting room floor. The primary reason for this was to ensure that I always got good efficiency out of A Very Good Tale and Timely Aid. It has the side benefit of also making a round 1 Taking Initiative less likely to whiff, which is sometimes important because lots of 0-cost draw is needed to ensure I get my combo pieces as quickly as possible.

That being said, I do really love the Wild Stallion on Vigilant Dúnadan; I might be tempted to swap it in instead of Gandalf and see how it feels.

In practice, I didn't find Will of the West to be necessary, so I left it out of the final deck; but against longer quests I might feel differently. I did always draw through the whole deck by the end of the game. I wouldn't want to make it a 1-of, though, since I could end up discarding my only copy with A Very Good Tale and then I'd be out of luck anyway! Something to keep an eye on.