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Subject: WoTR 4 Player Session Report rss

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Mark Herman
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Re-watching the movies has led me to re-read the LoTR novel that inevitably led to getting back into playing this one. Before I go further let me say that I spent a fun afternoon catching up on all of the strategy and session threads, so I am current with DEW North, card cycling, turn stalling, etc. This session report will resolve nor add to any of those debates, but our game was informed by all of this material. I was the only person who had played the game before. When it first came out I played it continuously for about a month then moved on to other pursuits with a short resurgence when the expansion came out. Suffice to say it was myself as Gondor with the other three players first timers. We played with all of the expansion rules and I spent a short time informing the group on the basic details around the best tSP strategies.

What I will observe is that a four player game has a very different dynamic than a two player game and the natural inefficiency of two players with half the cards and the alternating play of forces makes for a very competitive game. Based on my strategy advice the SP began to execute the DEW North, but due to two turns of large numbers of eye die rolls they were not making much progress relative to the FP. As the FP player we quickly sent Strider and two Hobbits off to Minas Tirith via Fangorn and Edoras where the two Hobbits were dropped off and due to the SP diverting their efforts against Lorien.Gandalf the Guide was sacrificed then brought back as the White and Strider was crowned in Minas Tirith, while Saruman and the Witch King began their evil careers.

Just as Lorien was about to fall to an army from Dol Gundar led by a Nazgul, the Ents entered the fray and for the cost of two Ents, Lorien was saved. While this was going on Orthanc was building a big army and it was successfully launched against Rohan and Helm's Deep fell before it could be reinforced. Things were looking grim for the FP when some good events brought the North and the Dwarves into the war. It was at this time that Gandalf the White went North and led a Northern army against Dol Gundar that ended in a disastrous set of siege die rolls causing Gandalf to retreat north. While this was going on Gondor was fighting the good fight against wave after wave of Sauron and Southern forces with Osilgoth changing hands multiple times. The defense-offensive tactics of Gondor held off multiple assaults and one siege, but the FP was running out of soldiers.

The FP had taken the High passes route as the Moria and the Lorien area were thick with SP forces and for several turns the SP had rolled an unusually large number of eyes. This longer route was inefficient, but now that the FP were short of resources and the SP forces were finally organized for multiple assaults for the military victory it was time to get the ring into Mount Doom. It was at this time that the SP players decided to go with no dice in the Hunt assuming a reprise of previous turns that had ended up with way too many eyes. Now fortune stepped in and on ten dice no eyes were showing. In that one turn the Ring moved 6 spaces (all six dice, using one elven ring) into Mordor just as Minas Tirith fell and the ring was declared in Mordor the next turn. One mistake made by the SP players, despite my advice, is they played no Hunt Tile event cards during the game although they could have. The FP players had put two zero hunt tiles into the pool, one of which came up at a critical moment.

With the military clock ticking toward midnight with the fall of Edoras and the beginning of the siege of Rivendal (Witch King was moved to Angmar along the way) the ring traversed Mordor (aided by a second elven ring, re-edited) and Frodo dunked the ring on the first action die of its third turn when it was likely that a military victory would have been achieved at the end of that turn.

My basic observation is that there was nothing new to be learned from this session other than it was important that the FP play a solid military game if for no other reason than to give yourself enough time to get the ring into position for the run into Mount Doom. Not one for the record books, but a heck of a lot of fun was had by all.

Mark
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Ralf Schemmann
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Thanks for the nice session report. It reminds to try the 4-player game again some of these days. Its dynamic is completely different from the 2-player game.

MarkHerman wrote:
(all six dice, using two elven rings)

Just a quick note that this was a rules error. Only one elven ring may be used per side per turn.
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Kristofer Bengtsson
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MarkHerman wrote:

Not one for the record books, but a heck of a lot of fun was had by all.

This, is the most imporatant part of the game though!

And, yes the same player (side in a multiplayer game) cannot use two Elven Rings in the same game turn.
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Mark Herman
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Veldrin wrote:
MarkHerman wrote:

Not one for the record books, but a heck of a lot of fun was had by all.

This, is the most imporatant part of the game though!

And, yes the same player (side in a multiplayer game) cannot use two Elven Rings in the same game turn.

Good to know. I wrote this without notes, but one of the two elven rings was used in Mordor, so there is an omission in the fine details somewhere. Thanks.
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Andy Daglish
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MarkHerman wrote:
with a short resurgence when the expansion came out.

best used on an empty stomach.
 
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