LotR TCG Wiki → Card Sets:  All 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 → Forums:  TLHH CC

Author Topic: My first attempt at a choke deck  (Read 5963 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

March 21, 2011, 05:33:54 AM
Read 5963 times

FM

  • Future Judge
  • *******
  • Information Offline
  • Wizard
  • Posts: 4074
My first attempt at a choke deck
« on: March 21, 2011, 05:33:54 AM »
This is my first attempt at a real choke deck.

Free Peoples:
The One Ring, Isildur's Bane
Frodo, Reluctant Adventurer
Aragorn, Heir to the White City
Mithril-coat
Sting x2
O Elbereth! Gilthoniel!
Hobbit Stealth x4
Hobbit Intuition x3
Bounder
Filibert Bolger, Wily Rascal
Thrarin, Dwarven Smith
Bill the Pony x2
No Stranger to the Shadows x2
An Able Guide x4
The Saga of Elendil
Ranger's Sword
Aragorn's Bow x2
Citadel of Minas Tirith x4
Athelas x2
Pathfinder x3
Hobbit Sword-Play x2
Gondor's Vengeance x2

Sites:
Hobbiton Woods
Bree Gate
Rivendell Waterfall
Eregion Hills
The Bridge of Khazad-dhum
Caras Galadhon
Silverlode Banks
Pillars of Kings
Wastes of Emyn Muil

Shadow:
Standard-issue morie swarm

The idea here is pretty simple, of course, but I'd like to explain some of the nuances:
Shadow side: I like to draw a lot of cards with this deck, because otherwise you might end up with a Freeps-light hand and not able to double move a lot (which is what you should be doing).
3 Pathfinder: The key with this deck is the amount of screwing you can do. If they need Aragorn and are not playing corruption, you can build high to deny them the Prancing Pony. Otherwise, build 0 so they have a hard time corruption you. Pathfinder helps with the screwing, being important for sites 3, 4, 6, 8 and 9 (and remember, even if you won't move anymore, you can still play Pathfinder and play the next site anyway, just to make sure AND unclog your hand). Of course, the amount of importance varies, but let me explain:
Site 3: Absurdly important, since the idea is giv as little twilight as possible and triple-move between sanctuaries.
Site 4: Important against Uruks and Moria, since you don't want Hollin to hit the table (their gain is absurd, both twilight-wise and game-wise) and want to keep your guys above ground as long as possible (so, effectively, every site you play is affected by Bill the Pony, except site 6).
Site 6: Important only if you're facing Swarms, and they WILL be able to swarm you (factoring Dimrill Dale, which is what they might play).
Site 8: Screws over a lot of Shadow sides, and adds VERY little twilight. It's also one of the most important sites.
Site 9: Simply does not help any viable strategy that might hurt you in the endgame, really useful if you're already packing some burdens and expect Summit of Amon-hen, or if they are playing [Sauron] Orcs, in which case Tol Brandir gets annoying. Denying Uruks their last site is a good idea, too, so, this site is almost always a good one to change.
Lack of other companions: The idea is simple. I've toyed with playing other Hobbits for A Talent for not Being Seen, and Boromir for Gondor Bowmen, but the deck kept getting too big, I kept getting the wrong cards at the wrong times and it simply didn't work. This way, I can almost always guarantee both companions won't be adding twilight, needing only 2 cards to do so (Bill and No Stranger), and the main idea I want this is so when I move into Bridge, they only get 6 twilight to work with. Most [Moria] decks will either have a runner or Host of Thousands (or They Are Coming), so if I play even ONE more companion, and do not get a choke card in time, they get 7 twilight, whip out a Runner, go to 8, drop The Balrog and call it a day. My Problem from now on. This way, by giving them only 6, they have to jump through some hoops to drop the Balrog, and they might not be able to.
Sting: I know explaining Sting in FotR is a moot point, it's strictly better than Hobbit Sword and you should always play it, period. However, I want to explain the lack of Frying Pan. The deck is scusceptible to Swarms in any form, so it SHOULD be an obvious addition. However, if the Swarm is [Moria], Mithril-coat and Aragorn's Bow will already help shave some of that damage. The real proble I was having was actually [Sauron] Orcs with Tol Brandir, and Frying Pan helps verry little, since Frodo will most likely have a few exertions due to their conditions and such. In the end, Sting + An ABle Guide ended up being just as good, meaning, when I died, having Pan wouldn't have saved me anyway, and teh extra strength of Sting helped when Pan wouldn't. It also helps forwarding the choke strategy.
Citadel of Minas Tirith: They won't play a lot of minions, but you also do not have that much strength to fight back, so Aragorn's Bow is your greates asset. Assuming they play 2 strong minions, you can outright kill one, cancel the skirmish against the other, and heal right back to move and do it again. Specially useful for the "triple-move between 3 and 6" plan.
Athelas: Is there only to get rid of annoying stuff like Black Breath and You Bring Great Evil (not nearly problematic, since Citadel circunvetns it a lot of times), mainly from Aragorn. The healing is a bonus, so, playing 2 is plenty.

Cards that did not get added:
Sam: It's just one card, and Son of Hamfast can help quite a bit in certain matchups, but to be honest, bidding 0 means they have to jump through hoops to get burdens on you anyway, and twilight Nazguls tend not to be fierce, which ends up helping more than hurting. Also, at this size, every one card matters, so unless it makes a huge difference, it's not that necessary. Some people pointed out I could start Green Dragon Inn, just for the sake of getting him and denying The Prancing Pony, but it helps a few decks anyway, and I want to help none. Also, having them walk on MY sites until I have Pathfinders to make my own way is good, I'll most likely outrun them on the 3-6 plan anyway.
Greenleaf: He means 1 extra twilight for 2 wounds on the last site (basically speaking). I have no way to deny the twilight of having him walking to a site, if I'm against [Sauron] Orcs I'mnetting one less minion, although clogging my hand in doing so since I won't drop him early (and I usually won't need it), and against Moria I'm turning on the Moria Scout + Threat of the Unknown combo, making him harder to evaluate, but I usually evaluate him as a loss in this conditions.
Gandalf, the Grey Pilgrim:Don't want any of the cards his culture has to offer aside from Servant of the Secret fire, which would translate in a bunch of cards being added, for very little benefit and probably more downsides (bigger deck and having to play The Prancing Pony, MUCH bigger deck if otherwise, and not a lot of benefits, since it means around 3-4 extra cards the whole game (if I get him early, since I plan on double-moving a lot), while the huge amount of twilight I add by dropping him gives them breathing room and if I get him on site 1, it means 8 extra twilight throughout the game, which far outweights the benefits of the drawn cards (I leave the card-drawing for my shadow side to do, anyway, no annoying Rule of 4).
« Last Edit: March 24, 2011, 02:15:36 PM by FM »

March 21, 2011, 05:37:05 AM
Reply #1

FM

  • Future Judge
  • *******
  • Information Offline
  • Wizard
  • Posts: 4074
Re: My first attempt at a choke deck
« Reply #1 on: March 21, 2011, 05:37:05 AM »
As an added note, both Gondor's Vengeance and Hobbit Sword-Play are on the line for cutting. Vengeance first. ALso, I've toyed with playing Pass of Caradhras instead of Eregion Hills, but in a nutshell, Hills is actually less dangerous, as a well-timed Saruman's Snows screws you over.
« Last Edit: March 21, 2011, 05:39:04 AM by FM »

March 22, 2011, 05:23:27 AM
Reply #2

legolas3333

  • *****
  • Information Offline
  • King
  • Posts: 2152
Re: My first attempt at a choke deck
« Reply #2 on: March 22, 2011, 05:23:27 AM »
Why don't you go with Sam, Faithful Companion + The Green Dragon Inn? Instant Bill The Pony + you get to screw all the Prancing Pony* decks + You actually use your site 1 + A great companion to sacrifice somewhere down the road.
A Promo Saved is a Promo Earned

March 22, 2011, 05:54:18 AM
Reply #3

FM

  • Future Judge
  • *******
  • Information Offline
  • Wizard
  • Posts: 4074
Re: My first attempt at a choke deck
« Reply #3 on: March 22, 2011, 05:54:18 AM »
Because he gives away twilight (Bill the Pony will go on Frodo most times), and Green Dragon Inn still helps some decks like Toolbox, which is annoying as #$&*@! and usually plays [Moria], meaning choking them is harder AND stopping them with swarms is harder since they are built to handle it quite easily. Also niche decks, like A Promise, which will be able to start Greenleaf out, which hurts my shadow side a lot. Also, the site 1 I use is there for a purpose as well, you need to get site 2 out of the way so you don't run into Weathertop, and, if things turn out badly, stopping on 2 still lets you do a 2-6 run (rare, but against certain decks, I've done it). ;)
PS: I forgot to mention about Might of Numenor and why I don't play it. I tried it, a lot, and it was just always subpar for me, clogging my hand, arriving at the wrong times and simply not doing enough, which is why I ended up going for more Citadels and a singleton Ranger's Sword (to keep lesser minions that get buy off the table due to the damage +1).

March 24, 2011, 04:17:34 AM
Reply #4

legolas3333

  • *****
  • Information Offline
  • King
  • Posts: 2152
Re: My first attempt at a choke deck
« Reply #4 on: March 24, 2011, 04:17:34 AM »
I feel like you could do with one more companion, but there's no Faramir, Son Of Denethor in fotr... maybe greenleaf or the self-healing boromir
A Promo Saved is a Promo Earned

March 24, 2011, 05:20:14 AM
Reply #5

FM

  • Future Judge
  • *******
  • Information Offline
  • Wizard
  • Posts: 4074
Re: My first attempt at a choke deck
« Reply #5 on: March 24, 2011, 05:20:14 AM »
Problem is, if I get him BEFORE that, I can't cycle him back. If I get him by then, he'll do very little that I'm not already doing against Nazguls, against Moria he'll enable Moria Scout, screwing me over sideways. Against Sauron Orcs he'll give them 1 extra twilight, roughly 1 extra minion, and those have 2 vitality, so if he's fully healed, I one-upped them, which is good, and he's probably awesome against Uruks. I'm not sure the extra slot is worth it, though. He'll require his own healing, if I get him too early he clogs me a lot (seriously, getting him in my opening hand means around 4 less cards drawn, which is quite a lot). I'm a little torn. Also, I'd need to cut something...

March 24, 2011, 07:28:40 AM
Reply #6

FM

  • Future Judge
  • *******
  • Information Offline
  • Wizard
  • Posts: 4074
Re: My first attempt at a choke deck
« Reply #6 on: March 24, 2011, 07:28:40 AM »
Hum... 1 Citadel could definitely go without much harm, since Greenleaf in its place WOULD be forwarding my strategy of killing off minions anyway, and I'd gain 1 wound (considering a double-move, I trade 1 Aragorn heal from a card that would be a Citadel, for Legolas' 2 vitality, and then, presumably, I'm at a sanctuary). However, I'll be adding more twilight as I move, will probably have to stop at 6 to refuel him (if I can't triple, I've done 5-7 a couple times, since Citadel helps with that) and I'm not sure the trade-off is that magnificent.
Working with worst-case scenarios minion-wise (because, otherwise, I've pretty much won anyway), and best-case scenerios FP-wise, against the shadow sides which are most likely to kill me ([Moria] and [Sauron]), and assuming I dropped a fully-healed Greenleaf on site 6, which is when I drew him (so he didn't clog my hand), and assuming everything went smoothly from 6-8 (which, let's face it, is a lot of things having to go my way):

[Sauron]: 1 extra twilight let's them drop one extra Orc Ambusher (+ 1 minion); Greenleaf exhausts to kill one minion (-1 minion) and faces one during the skirmish phase (-1 minion) - NET GAIN: 1 minion
RISKS: Hand-clogging; adding more twilight throughout the whole game as I move to avoid said clogging; adding 3 twilight by dropping him at 8 and providing enough for 1 more minion, meaning NET GAIN = 0.

[Moria]: 1 extra twilight, plus having an elf, which let's them drop one more minion and 4 Moria Scouts for free (+5 minions); Greenleaf exhausts to kill 2 minions (-2 minions) and faces one in the skirmish (-1 minion). NET LOSS = +2 minions
RISKS: Hand-clogging; adding more twilight throughout the whole game as I move to avoid said clogging; adding 3 twilight by dropping him at 8 and providing enough for 2 more minions, meaning NET LOSS = +4 minions; turning on Moria Scouts allows for Threat of the Unknonw shenanigans, meaning I can go as far as NET LOSS = +8 minions; Goblin Armory prevents Greenleaf Shenanigans.

Still not sold on Greenleaf, I know he's a given, people just toss him in and call it a day, but in this build, I can't see it. Nazguls, Uruks and [Isengard] Orcs are not that big an issue to warrant his inclusion, since against Nazguls, I'm either giving them precious twilight to drop threats or to prevent damage anyway, making him moot (in case of twilight nazguls); against uruks, I'm not facing a lot of them as they are kind of expensive, so I can probably take the few that get by, and Citadel will work wonders in helping me stay alive since I'll take some beatings; and against [Isengard] Orcs, Citadels almost completely counter them, since they cost a lot, will take a beating until the regroup, and whatever is left (which won't be much) Aragorn can soak up to heal with Citadel at eot, plus, using this ability means they're exhausted, so I can kill them with bow if I decide to move again, lessening the possibility of a swarm (my biggest fear). So, IS Greenleaf that good here?

March 24, 2011, 11:47:28 AM
Reply #7

Haszor

  • ****
  • Information Offline
  • Villager
  • Posts: 287
Re: My first attempt at a choke deck
« Reply #7 on: March 24, 2011, 11:47:28 AM »
You have two site sevens.

March 24, 2011, 02:16:10 PM
Reply #8

FM

  • Future Judge
  • *******
  • Information Offline
  • Wizard
  • Posts: 4074
Re: My first attempt at a choke deck
« Reply #8 on: March 24, 2011, 02:16:10 PM »
Sorry, small mistake. Fixed.