Finally I managed to write my tournament Report!
I played with my well known Fallen Radagast, which scored more than 30 points in every game. If I had been sure that there were 5 turns, then I could also have played my One Ring deck, be-cause with three dunks you’re probably in the finals. However, in 4 turns dunking three times is much harder because you also have to rely on your dices.
Round 1 Mario (Balrog) 5:1
He played a Balrog deck in ruin and Lairs and my Maias/Elf-Lords worked quite well. I was able to stop him from playing anything in the first two turns, so I was mean, because I started the Easterling Express to draw many cards while I knew that Mario would probably have many re-sources on his hand. I was able to control the game from the beginning and also could play The Way is Shut one time…the only thing was that I was not able to draw My Precious to prevent him from playing Stinker. And until the last turn I thought that would be a 6-0 for me. Mario made a really good last turn even when I wounded his Balrog at the Under-leas. He played Whctk and an Hill Troll for the Axe and I guess he played Orcs of Moria and so that it was even close to become a 4:2 instead of 6:0. Final MP Score 32:21
Round 2 Mark Alfano (Lidless Eye) 6:0
I was glad to play against Mark in the second turn, because we have not had the chance to play often against each other. In his first turn he moved with two Lieutenants to a Dragon-lair. I was able to wound one of them and rolled a 9 on the body check so that he had to discard him. I thought this was a good first turn but then he entered and played with Whctk The Mouth and Ice-Orcs. He played DoN against me to protect himself from the Elf-Lords. In the second turn he played Lidless Eye, another 3 mp character and the Great Eye. He killed my dwarves and can-celed my Maia attack and played Thong of Fire. After these two turn I thought his companies are now really untouchable and he was in the lead. He continued playing the Great Eye where you reduce the hazad limit by 1 and can cancel any event. Therefore, I played ma Dwarven Travel-er’s always without Chill them with Fear, because he would cancel this hazard anyway and I only had one limit left. So I decided to give him one point for the Dwarves and play at least one Maia. At turn three, the Favor of Valar shifted to my side and Mark’s rolls have been very bad. So I was able to wound his super strong characters and even discard them. My deck performed quite well even when Mark turned Wheathertop two times into a Shadowhold so that I was not able to play my wolves there. The second time, I just moved with Farmer Maggot to the Old Forrest to play Tom. And in the last turn I played Mouth of Sauron on him that he had to take The Mouth to his hand again. At the end there was not much left from his formerly strong companies and my items and allies doubled so that it was a clear win for me. Final MP Score 3x:1x
A funny side note: All of my next three opponents made it to the final even if they had lost against me.
And one interesting information after three turns in the Top 4 were 3 Fallen and one Minion deck.
Round 3 Karsten (Fallen Radagast) 6:0
We both played Fallen Radagast, but I was lucky enough to draw him on my first turn. I rolled 7 to start and Karsten 6. And Karsten had Radagast on the first hand, too. I think for his deck (he played the Tiger) Radagast is more important than for me. It was a nice start and I was able to play the key cards before him. In addition, my Maias slowed him down a lot. Therefore, this combination lead to a Final MP Score 32:12
Round 4 Antonio (Fallen Saruman) 5:1
He had a company at Ettenmoors squatting all the time at a haven while playing the Troll fac-tions. With Saruman he also stayed at a haven and played the Wizard’s Ring and Free to Choose. He played a lot of character points and so you couldn’t really avoid that he was scoring point above 20 I tried on Muster Disperses but much more was not playable against his Haven-squatting companies. This deck is really safe but you don’t have the chance to score too high
(Antonio please correct me if I’m wrong
) So I ended up with a final MP Score: 33:22
Round 5 Pawel (Lidless Eye) 4:2
He played a Minion Deck in Eriador region. The funny thing was, that he didn’t attack me even when he was travelling next to me. I thought about attacking his company, too. I had many wolves and characters for -1 as an extra strike and Faramir is not the weakest. I asked Pawel at the end and he said, that he thought about it the same as I did.
He avoided the Elf-lord with his DoN and faced my Maias without big losses. That’s why we scored well and ended with a Final MP Score 38:32
Four people had 19 points and only two can make it to the finals…surprisingly Heiner and Mark didn’t make it to the finals, once again. As you can see there is a very high level of players, where every single game is a challenge.
We ended up at 22.00 and therefore I decided to skip the drinking game and focus on the finals tomorrow ☺
I talked to Heiner about his bad luck and how close he came to the finals even if he lost two games…but Mark forbade me to talk to Heiner, because they wanted to start the Drinking game and Heiner had not opened a single Booster while Mark had been building his deck and was waiting for the start.
Heiner was in a good mood and took everything easy…the drinking game ended around 4 pm…
Aturn Midnight, I was going to my room and wanted to decide which deck I was going to play and what kind of hazards I wanted to change. I had the following choices: To use my Fallen Radagast, a new Deck, which I built only for Finals, or my One Ring deck.
I didn’t want to play the One Ring again, because I thought that the opponents would have extra hazards in their deck which makes it even harder to dunk. Moreover, I had only tested my new deck once with Hans-Werner (thanks again for the game)…so I thought Heiner is not in the fi-nals. I could risk it to play my Fallen Radagast again, because it had performed so well and I can play it even if you wake me up in the night.
The first decision was made….now I looked over my hazard list to decide what I wanted to change here. But because I didn’t know what the others would play and the hazard deck was already so nicely balanced to my resource side… I didn’t change a single card in the deck.
Round 1 Pawel (Balrog)
I knew that this would be a close game and for the first time my resource side was struggling!
He went first and he was staying all the time at the Worthy Hills and turned it into a Shadow hold. Nearly all of my hazards were unplayable. I have had one Pukel-men and I sideboarded Arthedain Rangers but his strong characters could handle that easily. I started playing all my Maias as a permanent event. But I also had to take care that I had some Elf-lord for him if he changed his mind and attacked me at the Weathertop. So my hazards did little damage to him and my resources went really bad, too. In my first turn, I played Hiding and one Wolf and tried the faction with a 4 but he played Foolish Words on guard so I missed the influence check. I have Smoke Rings and Longbottom Leaf in my starting hand as well so I decided to play on of them for Tom and Escape (in case he attacked me). In the second turn I didn’t have a character in Rhosgobel for Easterling Express and nothing to play on Weathertop even if I had another Hiding. But I drew Tom and knew I took a wrong decision and started to move to Old Forest in-stead of safely squatting. He played two Cave drakes….Annalena got killed and three others were wounded. I still had one untapped character but he tapped Old Forest with Long Winter. And three turns later he sent me back with Snowstorm. I knew that it would be probably like this as I saw the first Snowstorm. So nothing to play on Weathertop and my company at Rhosgobel slowly came to work. There was only one chance if I wanted to avoid a 0:6. I needed to get more turns.
And now I started to play really fast (to know my deck that good was helping a lot). I finished my turns in a minimum of time…and because my hazards could do only a minor damage to Pawel I also focused more on my resource play and thought about sideboarding why Pavel still had his turn. I played as fast that I was able to get 6 allies in Rhosgobel, so I could play the Girdle but Pawel also recognized that I slowly recovered and he called the council. Maybe I should have checked how many cards he had so that I wouldn’t have used the Easterling ex-press anymore…I played my only item in the Under Deeps because of Snowstorm and Faramir were able to get the faction in my last turn, too. I forgot to tap the Balrog at Moria so he played the Orcs of Moria. The Final Score was pretty close and if I would have had one more turn, I think I had won this game. Pawel played really well maybe he could have risked a little bit more (attacking me) but he deserved the win. Final MP Score 21:27
Round 2 Karsten (Fallen Gandalf)
He changed his deck to a brand new Fallen Gandalf version…without playing Gandalf at all. Because his intention was to play the Minion Orcs with a Home site at any dark-hold in Cirith Ungol etc. He was standing there with one Orc at a dark-hold and cancelled the auto attack and played a 4 MP item. That is a really nice idea and I also thought about something like this long ago but didn’t bring it to work. One problem for Karsten was that I played all of my Maias and Dwarves successfully on the other companies and even though he played two 4 MP items, I could kill one of them and because he was alone, he lost the item. I had Golodhros as an Agent, which was very helpful, too. One problem is that these Orcs can’t use the items they play and if there is an attack they don't get the +3 prowess from Ocrist. I called even without an item, be-cause his other source of points was only 6 character points. I just had to take care about him not getting any other points, which I was really confident about. I forgot one thing…he used Farmer Maggot against my attack, so that he was able to play a 2MP ally. I could stop the other companies from scoring. Final MP Score 38:16
Pawel tied with Antonio 32:32 and the ranking after two turns was:
1. Antonio 9 TP
2. Patric 8 TP
3. Pawel 7 TP
4. Karsten 0 TP
Three people could become World Champion, but the best thing was that I had the control about the title. If I won 6:0 against Antonio than I would be the champion. If Pawel won 6:0 and I only 5:1, then he would have the direct win against me. I “just” had to win 6:0 against Antonio.
Round 3 Antonio (Taladhan/Akhrorahil/Malady)
I knew this would be probably a 6:0 for me or for him, which is very good. Against his Fallen Saruman, squatting at a haven, it would be very difficult to win 6:0.
First, I have to say Antonio is a really nice player who is smiling at you even when his decks is suffering a lot. If you played something wrong and you asked him if you could change it, he smiled to you and said yes! This can’t be expected in a Worlds Final. Therefore, the atmosphere was really nice even if I was always scared about his Maladys.
He moved to Cameth Brin in turn 1 while playing “only” two I’ll report you. I was lucky to get my faction and one wolf in turn 1 and played it there, because until turn 2 Antonio tried to attack and Malady me for the whole game. He didn’t care that I had played Maias and Elf-Lords as a pro-tection against such decks. Since I knew that he would hardly get points besides the kill points from my characters, I decided to move to The White Towers as a haven (he’s not able to attack me there, just Malady is working). I was lucky to get Radagast and the Glove of Radagast early in the game, so that I would play all the allies and characters in Rhosgobel.
For the Girdle I needed one more ally, so I moved from The White Towers to Old Forest. The good thing there is the attacks vs. minions 2 strikes at 15. But Antonio wasn’t scared about that even if most of his characters had been already wounded. My only mission was to kill Taladhan. I attacked him hard and played a river and was sure he would do nothing this turn. But he played a resource on his wounded Taladhan through which he could heal and he then tapped for the river. The auto attack wounded Taladhan again and now he had -1 on Body because of this card he played. He survived again. I think I did 5 body checks in the whole game against Taladhan…he’s a tough guy.
At the end, I want to thank Heiner for the organization. We played in the room Turku where I have won my First World Championship 2011 in Finland…so it was almost compelling for me to win under these circumstances.
I will keep this weekend in fond memory and am looking forward to the Lure!!!