Deck for New Players: Minimum Purchase Gondor

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This deck is designed with newer players in mind, and is part of a series of decks that can be contructed using cards from only the Revised Core Set and one other purchase: Defenders of Gondor.

With this deck, we have a very low curve, with the vast majority of cards costing either one or two resources. They are weighted more in the Leadership Sphere, but with three copies of Errand-rider in the deck, it shouldn’t be too much of a problem to rearrange resources as needed. The only draw effects we have are Foe-hammer and Lórien's Wealth, so there may be a bit of an issue with card supply depending on how fast players find Steward of Gondor and start churning out their cards from their hand.

It should be said that there is an initial weakness in this deck when it comes to questing. Between the three heroes they can muster 3 . Once the deck gets up and running then won’t be a problem, but for the first few rounds this deck may struggle. Secret Paths will help mitigate some of the threat from locations until you get your deck up and running, Ranger Spikes will do the same for enemies, and using Denethor to avoid some of the worse encounter cards that could throw a major obstacle your way. Angbor the Fearless and Celebrían's Stone will both increase your net by 2 each, while Visionary Leadership will increase the of every Gondor character by 1 each. This brings the Citadel Custodian, Soldier of Gondor and Envoy of Pelargir all up to 2 each, which becomes very respectable once they are deployed en mass. The Emyn Arnen Rangers will derive their from the threat of whichever enemies fall prey to the Ranger Spikes, so if a 3- or 4- enemy becomes Trapped by them, the Rangers will find themselves questing for 3 or 4 respectively. Things get taken to a new level however when Faramir comes online, as he is able to increase everyone’s again by a further 1 each.

This deck is spoiled when it comes to defense with one of the best defenders in the game with Beregond. Unfortunately we’ve only one card in the deck that complements that ability, Gondorian Shield, but that card in itself is no bad thing as it takes Beregond up to 6 . Only one enemy in the Core Set, the Hill-troll, and one in the Dark of Mirkwood set, the Great Cave-troll, have 6 which runs the slight chance of being boosted up by a Shadow Card, but most of those cases can be covered by Behind Strong Walls. You need to get all the way to Return to Mirkwood to meet an enemy with a high enough attack to be of concern to Beregond, Attercop, Attercop, but in that case all you need to do is throw a Gondorian Spearman to it and have it dealt one damage as part of the bargain, or just use a Feint. Defender of Rammas will hold the line against most enemies, but for anything serious Beregond will prove to be a solid wall.

When it comes to attacking, once again this deck will find its strength is in numbers. Boromir will provide a boost for each ally of 1 each. With nearly half the deck as allies, as long as Boromir keeps a resource set aside to power this ability there will be a sizable swing in your favour. Defenders of Rammas, Gondorian Spearman and Envoy of Pelargir all up to 2 each and Angbor up to 3 . Boromir himself comes up to 4 with a Valiant Sword, 5 once your threat creeps above 40, which it surely will. This deck has no threat reduction, you will need to find room for some in quests that demand it, such as Trouble in Tharbad, Passing of the Grey Company or Murder at the Prancing Pony.

For more decks that can be built with only the Revised Core Set and one additional purchase, check out this article on Vision of the Palantir here: https://visionofthepalantir.com/2023/01/13/ten-decks-for-new-players/

1 comments

Jan 15, 2023 NERD 614

This deck really needs willpower if intended for solo play. Faramir is the only real option, unfortunately. I would probably add another Angbor the Fearless, Secret Paths, and Visionary Leadership. Then, I would cut all copies of Feint. This deck has two defenders and Feint uses up a valuable card slot. In addition, Feint is overused and may be boring for new players.