~ Caveat to this review: I misread and misunderstand cards all the time, so please correct me if I've erred. ~

This is an incredibly versatile and powerful contract with virtually no downsides. It requires you to run at least 20 allies, split evenly and only between 2 exclusive traits. You can (and likely will) include more than 20 allies of those traits, but that's up to you. This means you can't include ally Gandalf or other great off-trait allies in your deck. Your heroes must also have one of the two exclusive traits, but with the current size of the card pool, that isn't much of a limitation. Once you've met those two requirements it's nothing but upsides! In the right decks, the ally cost reduction can be triggered twice per round, but even without clever planning you'll often get the ally cost reduction once per turn.

Then there is the absolutely bonkers action that opens up the card pool like nothing else. Double the viable trait targets of one card for the entire round! Exhaust Last Alliance and (just to name a few examples) ...

  • Let Celeborn, Le Brand, Le Dain, or Le Boromir boost the stats of the secondary trait.
  • Bring in off-sphere allies from either trait with Thranduil, Tom, Hirluin, or Kahliel.
  • Run S Pippin alongside Dunhere or Le Eomer.
  • Ready Gwaihir after Gondor or Warrior allies enter or leave play from T Imrahil or Lothiriel's ability.
  • Put Brok Ironfist into play for free after discarding Folco or Caldara!
  • Treebeard ally can pay for nearly anything and ready anyone.
  • Overcome the trait restrictions of attachments. Put Fast Hitch, Golden Shield or Herugrim on almost anyone. Throw King of Dale on a Noldor or an Ent and go wild.
  • Make Steward of Gondor even more insanely powerful by granting the attached hero an extra trait!
  • Use The Elvenking to return any ally to hand and then play them later for reduced cost.
  • Events can hit more targets and be included in more decks.

The existing contracts can all be incredibly powerful, but each has a clear drawback. Bond of Friendship requires quad sphere and limits cards to 2 copies. Council of the Wise requires a singleton deck. Fellowship excludes non-unique allies, and Three Hunters excludes all allies. Burglar's Turn separates and randomizes your attachments. Grey Wanderer limits you to one hero. They all offer amazing boons if you're willing to build around the limitations. Last Alliance seems to offer more benefits for less limitations. It's an incredibly fun and crazy card that might be a tad too good, but that remains to be seen.

You folks did a lovely job with this deluxe, thanks for sharing it with the community.

Indeed this contract is quite powerful and can be seen as basically not having any drawbacks (though the deckbuilding can be challening and it tends to bring people towards ally swarm kind of decks), but for me the greatest positive aspect of this contract is the tactical choices it opens up for the player during the game. Almost all the other contracts are quite passive after deckbuilding and don't grant you many choices (Perilous Voyage and Council of the Wise aside), while each round with The Last Alliance you have many interesting choices to make for which card you want to be affected by the contract's second effect —

Another key benefit and drawback of this card of course is the fact that only the first player draws. With strong location control you can dictate just who the first player is at the time, allowing you to support a deck that might not have brought it's own draw. Unfortunately if the location is the active location you can't always be perfectly sure just how much progress you will place.

But it doesn't have to be the active location, so this card paired with things like Northern Tracker or Asfaloth gets very interesting, giving you more control and really giving you a boost by directly lowering staging area threat AND drawing you cards.

12

I find a hard time finding a use for this card unless I have a lot of ally readying. Sure 3 defense with 3 health is great. 3 resources is reasonable for that, but then you only get it once. Same with the 3 willpower, although that's rarer for Lore.

If I want to heal lots of damage from a hero, there are other options (Lembas in particular if you have elves, then you get action advantage. If I want to discard a condition I'd rather play Miner of the Iron Hills personally, saving the resource and getting a permanent chump blocker. If I want to draw cards there are obviously better options in Lore, although not always both players, Deep Knowledge is great but sometimes you don't want the threat.

I guess the only argument in favor is the flexibility, similar to Core Gandalf. Although he has more powerful selections and can be played with any resource type. If you're building a One Deck maybe you would include this over those other cards, but I'm running most of those in my lore decks anyway.

12

This ally is very useful with lore Faramir but also can help leadership Eomer to take down a big enemy before it could attack again in the next round. Beside those characters this one is still not bad for cost 3.

This card has quickly become a staple of my Bond of Friendship decks. You will very often end up not spending a resource from 2-3 of your heroes during each given turn with those kinds of deck so a "0-cost gain 2-3 resources" event is extremely powerful, especially in the crucial early game. This has enabled many powerful 2nd turns for me in the past and I will keep including it in any Bond of Friendship decks I make (especially Hobbit ones for the Saga).