- Dave J McWeaselyUnited States
This is the session report for the Second Edition Tournament, held in early 2012. Toskin took up the challenge of the Free People, while I played the role of Dread Lord Weasely. The game was interesting, and in the resolution of the very last action, either side could win!
But I get ahead of myself. From the first turn: the Free People rolled C C M M, and passed for their first move.
Sauron made them regret it by playing Threats & Promises. This led to an early Elven declaration of war, which in turn led to a turn 2 Witch King.
Gandalf the White arrived in Fangorn on turn 3.
Wisdom of Elrond came out to bring the dwarves to war, and the Witch King led Mordor Alpha north to confront the Dwarves. A short siege left Erebor under Shadow control, but a growing elven army was being mustered in Woodland Realm. Clearly, the remnants of Mordor Alpha were going to need help, but the Easterlings took their sweet time getting to war.
Why was that?
Saruman was soaking up lots of musters for elite Wargs in Dunland. He invoked Rage of the Dunlendings to blitz Rivendell on a turn end with few FP dice, and [2/0/1] elves got besieged by [4/2/0] Isengarders.
Saruman was surprised that Lord Elrond did not use his last Will of the West result to muster an elite into his elvenhome. Instead, the fellowship moved an additional time, and got revealed traveling through Moria. They also fought the Balrog, lost Gimli, and corruption climbed to 3 by the time they were revealed in Dimril Dale.
A military stalemate happened at this point, with both sides concentrating on development and the Ring Game. The Witch King was parked uselessly in Erebor. Strider left the fellowship for the crown of Gondor. Sauron concentrated on building up armies: Orcs Multiplying Again, New Power Rising, Pits of Mordor came out. Two additional Nazgul were summoned. Dol Guldur made a stab at Lorien, but unlike Rivendell, these elves could see it coming a mile away, and mustered up to [1/4/1]... Perhaps Sauron's real motivation was to flush the fellowship from Dimril Dale. Boromir bravely led the party into 5 eyes, though it cost him his life.
The fellowship then began to move quickly. Sauron tried to prosecute it with The Nazgul Strike!, but missed several easy hunt rolls, and forgot a few nazgul rerolls. When the fellowship revealed in Osgiliath, the Witch King flew forth and razed Rivendell with Deadly Strife. He then moved to Fortress Lorien, and had his Dol Guldur army get strongly rebuffed with 5:1 losses from the elves. He had to reinforce with Shadows on the Misty Mountains and Hill Trolls. Then the luck turned and Lorien collapsed.
Merry guided the fellowship to Minas Morgul, and then went to help his friend, Aragorn. Within the dark lands, Frodo and Sam would take a new guide: Gollum, slave to the ring. They started at 5 corruption with the following pool:
Sauron figured at about 2 eyes in the pool, there was just no way he'd
make it through Mordor with that. Sauron was dead wrong. He brought
out Bilbo's Song and There is Another Way to heal 3 and move fast. He
moved twice on the turn 8, and 3 times on turn 9. The hunt tiles drawn
were 1, 3, eye(2), 1r. On the final move Frodo had a 25% chance of a
win on the last move with this hunt pool:
There were 4 dice in the hunt pool, and 9 corruption, so all those eyes were instant death.
Frodo put on the ring. He saw the Witch King sack Helm's Deep. He saw his friends Merry and Strider starving in the walls of Minas Tirith. He saw the ashes of Rivendell and Lorien and Erebor and Dale. He even saw Orcs marching on the Shire. He knew that he had no choice, he had to go onward. But the ring betrayed Frodo, and the Eye saw him and recognized its peril. On the slopes of Mount Doom, the fiery gaze transfixed the emaciated hobbit, and bound him to His will. Sauron had reclaimed his ring.
So I'm not sure why I tried to test a corruption strategy for Shadow in the midgame of a finals tournament game, but there you have it. If you're going to do this, you shouldn't make silly mistakes like forgetting Nazgul rerolls. I was also kind of wondering about my decision no to use Isildur's Bane & Orc Patrol once the Fellowship was in Mordor, since they were 44% likeley to have drawn out an eye. In retrospect, I should have taken the 22% chance they gave me for an immediate victory. Live and learn!
Grats to Toskin for playing well.
- [+] Dice rolls
- Ralf Schemmann(Uthoroc)Germany
- Thanks for the nice report and congratulations on the win!
- [+] Dice rolls