Quite good on Sam in a Hobbit deck. I've tried it in a more medium threat deck (starting at 28) and it wasn't useable often enough to feel worth including.

Extra characters. Extra characters. Extra characters

Oh, Arrows from the Trees. Such an awesome effect, but too restricted to see use. Let's go through your text, line by line, to see exactly why you see such little use.

First, your timing restriction: "Play only after making engagement checks." While this is fair and part of how you work, it also limits you, making it so that you force a player who draws you to wait at least half a round before doing anything with the new card they just drew. Ranger Bow may require them to exhaust a character and take up a restricted slot, but they can trigger it whenever they wish for a similar effect.

Second, quite possibly the largest nail in your coffin; "If no enemies were engaged this phase." This, Arrows from the Trees, is what makes many instantly dismiss you as binder fodder, the Achilles heel that cripples you. Depending on the quest, it can be difficult to have 1 deck manage to avoid engaging enemies during the encounter phase, but having to have multiple do so in multiplayer is almost an impossibility. Looking at the AP you came in, EACH player in multiplayer would need to keep their threat below 25 in order to avoid the possibility of a forced engagement disabling you, far from an easy task. Now, you can be used in solo, at which point it's easier to control threat, but that brings its own problems which I will discuss later.

Third, after all those restrictions have been met, what do you do? "Deal 1 damage to each enemy in the staging area." 1 damage. Waiting until the encounter phase, making sure everyone's threat is low enough to avoid engaging enemies, not optionally engaging anything (a tough decision to make, in some quests), spending a resource, and in exchange we get a delayed Thalin hitting each enemy in the staging area. That is not without merit, but it certainly seems a poor exchange. Fortunately, this isn't all you do, as the players as a group may spend 3 resources to deal an additional 2 damage to each enemy in the staging area, for a total of 3, as much as Forest Patrol! This is enough to destroy most of the enemies in the game, and in exchange for this great boon to combat all we need to do is:

  1. Have enough enemies in the staging area to make it worthwhile to play you (> 1; else, Forest Patrol and Traps would serve us better)
  2. Make sure that every player's threat is low enough to avoid engaging said enemies
  3. Also make sure that there are no enemies in the staging area who would survive that we want to engage (i.e.; enemies with high archery values)
  4. Do so with the two spheres with the least threat control in solo or make sure that multiple decks, one of which includes , keep their threat below every enemy's engagement cost
  5. Spend 1 and 3 resources, either with one deck in solo or multiple decks in multiplayer (which, once again, brings up the problem of maintaining multiple decks' threats)

If we manage to keep at least 2 enemies in the staging area, if we manage to keep our threats low enough to evade them, if there are no enemies who would survive who we wish to see gone, if we manage to do so despite poor access to threat control, and if we manage to have enough resources to spend, we can make good use of you. That is four too many ifs for most players, Arrows from the Trees. You have too many restrictions to justify your effect, especially without spending those 3 resources. You might be effective if everything goes right, Arrows from the Trees...but how often do things go right?

One final note: There is a combo that helps redeem you, however, though it requires either multiple decks or -resource icon granting, like Song of Battle. With Advance Warning's help, you become much easier to use, effectively saying "Spend 3 and 3 resources to deal 3 damage to each enemy in the staging area." Your arts even go rather well together. This isn't enough to make most players take you out of their binder, sadly, but it does give you a niche use, and a niche use is better than none.

Amusingly enough, I also think that you have some use at Gencon or other more-competitive games, precisely because of how restrictive you are. So restrictive are you, Arrows from the Trees, that the chance of you being successfully used is nigh a million to one. And, as Terry Pratchett said, "It's a million to one chance, but it might just work."

A good way to use it could be in a Fellowship with a mono Lore deck (with Argalad maybe) able to use Advance Warning and a mono tactics one (with Thalin e TaBilbo) to pay for the larger effects of this card. I might be tempted to create a Fellowship that makes use of all those seldom used cards like Knife-Work, Inspiring Presence and Hold the Line —

No reviews for the best ally in the game? This shall not stand!

Ally Glorfindel (titled so to differentiate him from the other Glorfindels) is a 5-cost unique ally, though you can reduce his cost using To the Sea, to the Sea! His text box also means that you can discard him to To the Sea, to the Sea! to reduce his own cost as you can play him from your discard pile. In exchange for that not-insignificant resource outlay, you get a 3/3/1/4 ally, making his stats just 1 fewer than his hero variants'. He also features built-in readying, with a cost that can be easily circumvented.

However, the heaviest cost of ally Glorfindel is his opportunity cost; by including him, you pass up Spirit Glorfindel the First as well as the potential to spend the 5 resources you needed to play him on other cards, such as Pelargir Shipwright or Knight of Belfalas. Is any card, even a 3/3/1/4 ally with built-in readying, worth passing up the cheapest hero in the game (in all meanings of the word) and the 2-3 other cards you could've played if you hadn't played ally Glorfindel?

Not necessarily, but those things aren't actually what make Glorfindel the best ally in the game. What does is actually that simple first line of text on his text box, "Glorfindel can be played from your discard pile." That simple line of text turns Glorfindel from a good ally (who might not be worth passing a great hero up for) into a game-breaking monstrosity. Suddenly, the sphere with the least healing or pseudo-healing options suddenly has the biggest pool of any sphere, because no matter how many times Glorfindel dies, if you can pay for him (and even a mono- deck will want to include some resource acceleration if it includes Glorfindel, so you stand a good chance of being able to pay for him) you can just keep bringing him back.

Combine these two parts of the card-the impressive statline and readying and the infinite recurability-and you have an ally that, if you can find a way to pay for him, is worth every penny. Glorfindel can quest for 3, take some damage during the quest phase, then either ready to counteract during the combat phase, ready to chump during the combat phase, or simply soak some archery. Typically, destroying a 5 cost ally is not a good move, but Glorfindel is no typical ally, and destroying him can actually be a boon in some situations, allowing you to put him back into play fully healed so that he can soak up archery again.

And all of this is assuming that you simply use Glorfindel as an overglorified sponge. He can do a lot more than that, from turning cards in your hand into extra characters committed to the various 'tests' that come up occasionally in quests (i.e.; Sailing tests from Dream-chaser and Escape tests from the Dead Marshes) to rocketing his stats even higher using cards like Raiment of War or Narya to become a monster in the combat phase. He even has value when he's in your hand, allowing you to confidently discard him without fear of losing something you might need later. And, of course, no review of a high-cost ally with built-in readying would be complete without mentioning A Very Good Tale.

Glorfindel may be expensive, but he is worth every penny. 3 is impressive even in , 3 is mind-boggling there, and 4 is impressive on an ally anywhere. His readying is fairly cheap and can even make other copies of himself that you draw useful. But it's the ability to play Glorfindel from your discard pile that seals the deal, at its worst allowing you to discard him to satisfy some cost or effect and not worry about having lost something you might need, at its best allowing you to laugh in the face of direct damage provided you have enough resource acceleration. If you manage to set Glorfindel up properly, you'll easily find the keyword he actually really, really deserves.

Expensive so really requires setup to make sure you maximize it.

Tactics Eowyn, Hammer Stroke, and this lets you defeat just about every enemy on the board though so the possibilities are out there.

The Valour Action can be incredibly good too in a big fellowship, one strong sentinel defender like Beregond and 1 or 2 ranged attackers can both defend and then help clean up the board.

Raiment of War is quite possibly one of the best attachments to come out of the Dream-Chaser cycle, not including the box. Granted, against In Service of the Steward and Hithlain that isn't particularly notable, but I would say it even holds up against the likes of Armored Destrier and Strider.

Raiment of War is, at 2 cost, a relatively affordable card, though its real cost is its opportunity cost. To be precise, what restricted attachments do you forego by playing Raiment of War on someone?

I would argue that, for most heroes, Raiment of War is not worth this cost; Beregond hits higher with a Gondorian Shield and can take another restricted card, Amarthiúl cares more about the quantity of defenses you can make with him as opposed to the quality so Armored Destrier is better, Gimli prefers Citadel Plate, and Beorn can't have attachments at all. While it could be interesting on Boromir, the fact of the matter is the majority of the time your heroes will prefer restricted attachments that provide a more specialized stat boost as opposed to Raiment of War's general one, and typically can find them.

But what if they can't?

This is where a key word in Raiment of War's text box shows its quality; "Attach to a Warrior character." Not a Warrior hero, a Warrior character, meaning it can go on allies. Allies who can only take about half the Weapons in the game and less than half the Armors. In short, allies who by taking Raiment of War pass up very little else. While Ered Mithrin has dulled some of Raiment of War's shine in this aspect by introducing more restricted attachments allies can take, like Round Shield, Raiment of War is still a solid choice for taking up the restricted slots of an ally who would otherwise have nothing: Defender of Rammas doesn't die to "Deal 1 damage to defending character" shadows anymore, Jubayr becomes even more indestructible, Guardian of Rivendell reaches eye-popping combat stats, Defender of the Naith actually becomes worthwhile to ready, and Knight of the White Tower reaches a stat total that would, if on a hero, make them tie with Gandalf for starting threat.

Raiment of War is overall a lot like the decision to send the Ring into Mordor to be destroyed; choosing it may end up being the right decision, but it is a decision primarily made because the chooser has nowhere else to turn. If the Council of Elrond had had the capability, they probably wouldn't have chosen to send the Ring into Mordor, instead opting for a less-risky route, just like Raiment of War is typically passed over once more specialized restricted attachments are made available. But, for most allies, as with the Council, they don't have that capability, and so make do with what they have. And, just like the Council's decision, sometimes this decision can prove to be a very wise one.

Good for Gimli —