Hey everyone. Here's an Arda deck we've been playing with for the last 5 years or so. I find it to be the most consistently enjoyable Arda experience. There are a few special rules.
This is a format of the MECCG game for 2 to five players:
Play Deck: The play deck in this version of the game consists of 171 resource cards and 252 creatures and hazard cards (see spreadsheet).
• Resources: There is a One Ring strategy included in this version of Arda, but the only way to win with one ring is using Gollum and the card Gollum’s Fate.
• Hazards: The vast majority of the cards come from the Middle Earth the Wizards set. The hazard strategy focuses on orcs, trolls and Nazgul, with dragons, a few men and a spider thrown in. All dragons and dragons At Home cards are included. No dragons Ahunt cards are included.
MP Deck: Most cards with Marshaling Points are used from Middle Earth the Wizards along with hoard items from Middle Earth the Dragons and a card or two from Middle Earth Dark Minions.
Roving Character Deck: All characters are used including promotions and even Strider from Middle Earth the Balrog.
Offering Deck: Three copies of most minor items are included along with special rules for drafting unique special items.
Site Deck: This game uses no Underdeep sites.
The Game Starts
We start this version of the Arda game in a slightly different order than the standard Arda game instruction say to on page 3.
Step 1) Each player selects a Wizard to Play with.
Step 2) Handing Out Characters.
Major Characters: First each player receives a copy of two major characters. The major characters all have a 7 or higher in the Mind attribute, with one exception: Gimli, ( he has six mind but his abilities and other attributes make him worth including in the major character draft).
Strider and Aragorn: After handing out major characters to everyone, it should be determined if both Strider and Aragorn were distributed. If both versions of the same character were distributed, then both players must turn them in. The remaining major characters are reshuffled and those two players are again given major characters. If one of them happens to get Strider or Aragorn again and the other does not, the character can be played.
If one player happens to draw both Aragorn and Strider in his opening, he may keep the one he wants to play and exchange the other for a different major character.
Remaining Characters: Once the major characters have been set, the rest of the characters are handed out in a draft pool of 10 characters to each player. So that each player can select a starting company.
All characters not drafted (including major ones) are then shuffled and placed into a Roving Character deck. Note that if Aragorn has been drafted, Strider will not be included in the Roving Character deck. If Strider has been drafted, Aragorn will be included in the Roving Character deck, but only Strider’s player will be able to use that card from the Roving area.
Step 3) Each player may now choose the 2 minor items they wish to start in their opening party. There are some unique minor items that certain players will be given the first option to take as one of their opening items based upon who they drafted.
• Black Arrow: Any player who drafted Bard the Bowman gets the first option to take this item. The option then passes to any player who drafted Brand and then to the player who drafted the man with the highest mind (usually Beorn).
• Emerald of Doriath: The player who drafts the elf with the highest mind has the first option to take this item with their starting party.
• Sting: The player who drafts Bilbo gets first option to take this item. The option then passes to any player who drafted Frodo and then to the player who drafted the hobbit with the highest mind.
• Thorin’s Map: The player who drafts Thorin gets first option to take this item. The option then passes to the player who drafted the dwarf with the highest mind.
Step 4) Each player now draws a Play Hand of 8 cards from the Play Deck and a MP Hand of 5 cards from the MP Deck. All players now have the option to openly swap MP from their hand for MP cards in other people’s hands. All trades are 1-for-1.
Step 5) Start the game at Riverside or your wizards home site.
Turn Sequence rules are followed as per the most current version of the Arda rules.
No variation, optional rules or Arda card errata are used in this version of Arda.
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