This card, alongside Blood of Númenor, has become especially interesting for decks using the new The Grey Wanderer contract, as you don't need a resource match for the first card you play each planning phase, and these one hero decks have the advantage of secrecy. Thus, they can use Resourceful to its fullest extent, which means that, with some preparation, they end up with dozens of resources und thus the ability to take out even a Balrog in a single round thanks to the contract's readying ability. I have had great success using Gondorian Fire and Blood of Númenor in a Beravor deck with The Grey Wanderer, using her card draw to get both of these cards and all three (or at least two) copies of Resourceful on her at an early point, so that she could easily kill every enemy in the game, The low starting threat of a single hero also allows those extra rounds of preparation. The trait restriction isn't too bad, either, since Ranger characters in general and Dúnedain in especial all are a natural fit for this contract, as they have balanced stats and are exactly the jack-of-all-trades this contract requires. Gondorian fire then can boost up their attack value to a ridiculous amount (I have already killed the Eastern Crows with some 50+ attack). As long as I play The Grey Wanderer with a Gondor or Dúnedain hero, this along with Blood of Númenor and Resourceful is an auto-include in every deck.


While this contract is designed to encourage creative and innovative deck construction, the huge drawback is the restriction of 1 copy of any card in your deck.

This downside is potentially offset by the bonus Response: Every time you play an event card, you can pick one of three options, card draw, resource gain, or threat reduction. You can actually pick each bonus once per round (for a total of three separate bonuses per round)

Is it worth the tradeoff? Given the limited number of Event cards possible in a deck (even with Will of the West recursion), think this contract appears to have a finite upside. Once you run out of Event cards to play, there is no more bonus. In a "half event card" (25 card) deck, that is only 25 extra bonus, assuming you can draw your entire deck.

However, play testing of this card in proxy (the card has been revealed but not released at time of this review) uncovers one Event card that combos with Council of the Wise to create unlimited Contract bonus potential: Rumour from the Earth.

My full review of this powerful combo (I call it "Rumour from the Wise") is on the Rumour from the Earth listing. Here is a summary of what that combo can do:

It is infintely recursive and pays for itself, offering unlimited free scrying. Or you can pay 1 and use the combo as a resource smoother. It can also be used up to two more times each round to add card draw and/or threat reduction. There are 8 possible ways each round to play Rumour from the Earth with this contract, and you can repeat it every round!

The most comprehensive in-play usage I have seen with the Rumour/Council combo so far in one round is all of this:

(A) see the encounter card for a guarded item (put the guarded item in play, after seeing it will not draw a surge, etc.)

(B) see what encounter card is next for normal staging

(C) see the next shadow card to be dealt this round for combat

(D) get a card draw

(E) reduce threat by one

(F) resource smooth 1 to a different sphere

All for only 3 , and it is repeatable every round since Rumour from the Earth returns to your hand!

Rumour from the Earth is a must have recursion with Council of the Wise, and gives the contract a solid foundation by completely uncapping its upside. (once you draw Rumour)

There are three more recursion Event cards to potentially pair with this contract: Courage Awakened, Noiseless Movement, Swift and Silent. All very powerful with complementary effects to Rumour, although they require Secrecy to pull off.

Council of the Wise is an amazing design by FFG, to make a new contract card like this that upgrades the usefulness of cards up to 8 years older....

In combo with the new Council of the Wise Contract, Rumour from the Earth transforms from a great card, into a multi-function, recursive, deck defining, ultimate scrying card.

On playing any event, Council of the Wise lets you either (choose one, but you can do each of these once per round). Add one resource to a hero, draw a card, lower your threat.

Pair this with Rumour of the Earth's "pay 1 resource, to return this card back in your hand", and you get the ultimate combo of flexibility.

Depending on how you want/need to play it, here are the eight options available once you draw this card, usable every single round as you return the card to your hand each usage:

1. Single play, x1 function: 0 cost encounter scrying. Look at top card of encounter deck for 0 cost, return this card to hand (gain the resource back with the contract)

2. Single play, x2 functions: 1 cost for resource smoothing and 1x encounter scrying. Spend one for encounter scrying, add resource to another hero

3. Double play, x2 functions: 1 cost for card draw and 2x encounter scrying (use combo once to gain , twice to draw a card)

4. Double play, x2 functions: 1 cost to reduce threat by one and 2x encounter scrying (use combo once to gain , twice to reduce threat)

5. Double play, x3 functions: 2 cost for one resource smoothing, card draw, and 2x encounter scrying. (Use twice, spend two for encounter scrying, add resource to another hero, draw a card)

6. Double play, x3 functions: 2 cost for one resource smoothing, reduce threat, and 2x encounter scrying. (Use twice, spend two for encounter scrying, add resource to another hero, reduce threat)

7. Triple play, x3 functions: 2 cost for card draw, threat reduction, and 3x encounter scrying. (Use contract combo the maximum three times in one round, returning a resource)

8. Triple play, x4 functions (!!!!): 3 cost for card draw, threat reduction, one resource smoothing, and 3x encounter scrying. (Use contract combo three times in one round, returning resource to a different sphere)

Bonus**** Triple play, one card, every round, x6 functions!!!!

Here is what is even more crazily powerful with this card combo'd with Council of the Wise. Spreading out the plays of a single copy of this event card potentially lets you (A) see what encounter card will guard an item, (B) see what encounter card is next, (C) see what shadow card is dealt this round, (D) get a card draw, (E) reduce threat by one, all for the low cost of 2 or (F) 3 if you want to resource smooth.... Then you can repeat the entire thing. Every. Single. Round!

Scrying standouts Firyal, Henamarth Riversong, Risk Some Light, and even Denethor bow before this combo!

Getting a guarded item (like Necklace of Girion, Glamdring, Mithril Shirt) safely into play, while still knowing what will guard it, and what encounter card comes afterwards, has never been easier.

This card combo is insane. The only thing keeping it in check is that with Council of the Wise, you can only put one copy of Rumour from the Earth in your deck. You have to draw it first.

But there are many ways to tutor/draw this out if you don't see this in your opening hand (24% chance with mulligan). I'll post a deck in the future - RiddermarkLord's TOME (Tour of Middle Earth) that shows how this can be done under Council of the Wise restrictions.

Rumour from the Earth....its power is no rumour when paired with a Wise Council....

For solo play this is indeed the most powerful card to have in a Council of the Wise deck and definitely worth fishing out with Gather Information, Word of Command and so forth. —

One of the most spectacular uses I've found for this card is in a multiplayer game in Khazad Dum/Dwarrowdelf cycle, when players tend to get overrun by a swarm of low-health enemies: play The Hammer-stroke during a critical moment of the scenario and then use Boromir's ability to discard him and deal 2 damage to each enemy that you've just engaged (it works even better if someone uses Thalin and can exhaust some ranged character to play Rain of Arrows). Not only is this extremely thematic "last stand" for this character, but this sacrafice often allows the group to make a final push and win the game. This was one of the most exciting and satistyfing moves I managed to pull off in this game. Ever.

That is indeed a very satisfying combo, though mainly possible in those first quests where lots of enemies had 2/3 hit points. Lately it's become a rare occurence, though you could supplement the combo with Rain of Arrows and Pursuing the Enemy —

Don't underestimate Son of Arnor! Many people think that he's way too overpriced (and he probably is, at least before Dunedain decks became a thing), but he can be super useful. I've never seen anyone mentioning one of his most clever/powerful uses: if you put him into play via Stand and Fight or Sneak Attack right after resolving enemy attacks, you'll be able to engage a tough enemy that was still sitting in the staging area and it won't be able to attack you this round, but you'll be able to attack him immediately.

That's indeed a good combo for this ally. With a bigger card pool you have some other allies like Mablung or Lore Faramir which might be even better at it. Tactics Aragorn does the same thing too every time it destroys an enemy. —