The Gathered Helping Ring Play and Anti-Play Proposals

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Bandobras Took
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The Gathered Helping Ring Play and Anti-Play Proposals

Post by Bandobras Took » Fri May 16, 2008 2:03 am

Not to overshadow finishing set one, but helping Ring Play seems like it would be a good focus for a second set, as well. I thought I'd gather some of the various cards that have been suggested (Thorsten and Jambo both have good ideas, while I have downright psychotic ones) and lump them by what they're generally supposed to touch upon/help:

Problem 1 : Rolled Down To The Sea

Right now, Rolled is the Single and only anti-Ring hazard in the entire game. This is for two reasons: it hits all kinds of rings and it works against Hero decks that don't test for the One until they're at Mount Doom. Rings for points decks need some sort of protection against Rolled and hazard players need more interesting options for hazard play against the Dunk.
  • Resources vs. Rolled:

    The Undeeps of Anduin V: permanent-event
    Unique. Lost Knowledge. Playable on an untapped sage at a site in Anduin Vales or Brown Lands where gold rings are playable. Tap sage and the site (if untapped). Sage may tap to cancel the effect of Rolled down to the Sea before it resolves. Tap this card to take Gollum or Stinker to hand from playdeck (reshuffle). This card never untaps.
    Alternatively, if My Precious is in play, a character in the company bearing a ring special item may tap at the beginning of the site phase and have My Precious attack the company. You must provide My Precious with a site from your location deck in the same or adjacent region to where character is. This card may be played as a hero resource.

    The Undeeps of Anduin V: short-event
    Tap a sage to cancel the effects of Rolled Down to the Sea before it resolves. Remove this card from play
    Alternatively, discard a gold ring or ring special item from the company to cancel an attack that can be cancelled. If this cancels an attack by opponents company, place this card and the ring in opponent's MP pile.
    This card may also be played as a hero resource.

    Ringlore [v]
    Permanent-event
    MP: (1)
    Playable on a sage during the site phase at a site where infomation is playable. Tap the sage but not the site. If a Gold Ring in the same company as a sage with Ringlore is tested you may either add or subtract one to the roll (after the roll). A modified roll cannot be used to reveal The One Ring. If a ring is played following such a test, this card gives 1 MP. You may discard this card to target and cancel Rolled Down to the Sea played earlier in the same chain of effects.

    Secrets of Their Forging[v]
    Permanent-event
    MP: (1)
    Playable on a sage during the site phase at a site where infomation is playable. Tap the sage but not the site. If a Gold Ring in the same company as a sage with Secrets of Their Forging is tested you may either add or subtract one to the roll (after the roll). A modified roll cannot be used to reveal The One Ring. If a ring is played following such a test, this card gives 1 MP. You may discard this card to target and cancel Rolled Down to the Sea played earlier in the same chain of effects.

    Hazards/Resources To Help Against No Test Until Mount Doom Decks

    Wisdom To Wield: Permanent event
    Playable on your Ringwraith. All ring tests by any company at your Ringwraith's current site suffer a -3 or +3 modification to the roll (your choice) after other modifiers. May not be duplicated.

    Something Else At Work: Short Event
    Unique. Play on any Gold Ring Item. The Gold Ring Item is tested. Your opponent may apply a modifier of up to +2 or -2 to the roll.

    The Will of the Ring: Short Event
    Playable on a company with a character bearing any Ring Item or Wizard's Ring. Make a roll, adding the character's mind (10 for a wizard) and subtracting his current corruption point total. If the roll is less than 5, replace the company's new site with any Ruins & Lairs, Shadow-hold, or Dark-hold in any of the regions in their site path or adjacent to their new Under-Deeps site.

    The Ring Will Have But One Master: Short Event
    Unique. Playable if you are a Ringwraith or Sauron and your opponent is a wizard or balrog and the One Ring is at Barad-Dur. Your opponent loses the game. May be played at any time during your opponent's site phase, as well.

    The Precious: Permanent Event
    Does not affect Hobbits. During the site phase or when the One Ring first comes into play, the character with the lowest mind in the same company as the bearer of the One Ring must attack the bearer of the One Ring, handled according to the rules for CvCC. Discard this card if the bearer cancels the strike using the One Ring. May be duplicated, but only one copy of this card may trigger once in a given site phase.

    The Ring's Betrayal: Permanent Event
    Playable on a company with a Ring Item. Place the Ring Item "off to the side" with this card and choose a site in the current company's region or adjacent regions also to be placed off to the side. Target Ring Item is playable at this site regardless of the site's tapped status. May also be played as a resource. When played as a resource, may not be targeted by Marvels Told or Voices of Malice, and you may move to the site regardless of its "off to the side" status. Mount Doom may not be used as the site, and Barad-Dur must be used as the site if possible.

    Wisdom To Wield : Permanent event
    Playable on your Ringwraith. All ring tests by any company at your Ringwraith's current site suffer a -3 or +3 modification to the roll (your choice) after other modifiers. May not be duplicated.
Problem 2 : Card Flow vs. Value

Let's face it; it's a lot of work to get Rings for points out in any meaningful fashion. Between having to hold on to tests and trying to actually get good rolls, it's a slow, painful process. The two main proposed solutions are to ease the burdens on testing and up the power of various rings:
  • Getting the Right Rolls

    Forgotten Scrolls V: minor item
    Lost Knowledge. May not be included in a starting company. Only playable at a Free-hold, Border-Hold or Ost-in-Edhil. Tap a sage in the company and discard this card to test a gold ring item: you may only play a lesser ring resulting the test.You may add or subtract 2 to any roll testing a ring in the company for the rest of turn, yet this may not result in playing The One Ring.

    Ringlore [v]
    Permanent-event
    MP: (1)
    Playable on a sage during the site phase at a site where infomation is playable. Tap the sage but not the site. If a Gold Ring in the same company as a sage with Ringlore is tested you may either add or subtract one to the roll (after the roll). A modified roll cannot be used to reveal The One Ring. If a ring is played following such a test, this card gives 1 MP. You may discard this card to target and cancel Rolled Down to the Sea played earlier in the same chain of effects.

    Secrets of Their Forging[v]
    Permanent-event
    MP: (1)
    Playable on a sage during the site phase at a site where infomation is playable. Tap the sage but not the site. If a Gold Ring in the same company as a sage with Secrets of Their Forging is tested you may either add or subtract one to the roll (after the roll). A modified roll cannot be used to reveal The One Ring. If a ring is played following such a test, this card gives 1 MP. You may discard this card to target and cancel Rolled Down to the Sea played earlier in the same chain of effects.

    Rumor Of the One: Permanent Event
    Add +1 to each ring test for every Lesser Ring, Magic Ring, Spirit Ring, and Dwarven Ring in play. May not be duplicated.

    Card Flow
    Magic Ring of Lore/Enigma: If bearer is already a sage, he may tap to return a just-played ring test to your hand instead of discarding it.

    Flashier Rings

    Magic Ring of Nature/Savagery: If bearer is already a Ranger, tap him to cancel any Environment effect that affects his company or his company's new site or a region in his company's site path.

    Magic Ring of Courage/Fury: If bearer is already a Warrior, tap Magic Ring to reduce the body of an attack by -2.

    Magic Ring of Words/Lies: If bearer is already a Diplomat, +3 to influence checks against an opponent's resources, and the cross-alignment penalty does not apply.

    Magic Ring of Shadows: If bearer can already use Shadow-Magic, he may tap and remove this card from the game in order to name a card. If the named card is in your opponent's hand, he must remove it from play.
Problem 3 : How on earth do you actually do New Ringlord/FW Rings for points?

Filling the conditions of New Ringlord is awkward. Doable, but awkward. The huge problem is that the clever opponent simply does Blind To the West on your ring tests -- delaying you enough to be able to call. This also applies in a lesser way to a Rings For Points FW deck -- you get your ring and test ready and have a nice 1 MP gold ring item for the council.
  • Spell Born of Discord V:
    When this card comes into play you may choose to tap it or leave it untapped. This card does not untap. If untapped, Blind to the West does not affect Spells played by your Fallen Wizard. If tapped, Ire of the East does not affect Sorcery, Spirit Magic, or Shadow-Magic when played by your Fallen Wizard.

    A New Ringlord
    8 SP
    Playable if your Wizard is at a protected wizardhaven and bears the one ring. If you have at least 80 SP you win the game (counting this card's SP).

    Man Of Skill
    Unique. Saruman Specific. +1 to any roll required by A New Ringlord.
Anyway, I'll try and keep track of this list, but I make no promises. Remind me if I forgot anything. I've tried to edit them according to the Feedback, as well.

This thread should probably be for discussing the various interactions between all these ideas; not for introducing a whole lot more, as such e.g. how does a proposed Virtual Ringlore interact with a Proposed Ring's Betrayal, etc.

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Thorsten the Traveller
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Post by Thorsten the Traveller » Fri May 16, 2008 1:30 pm

Nice thread.
First off, I think the No test till Doomsday is something rather unrelated to the general ringplay issue. Making the choice for winning by way of the One Ring is not related I think to making a choice not to play rings, wether for points or coolness/tactical advantages. Therefore, even if perceived as a problem, I would be careful not to let any measures against No test till Doomsday have negative impact on Rings for Points - actually I prefer the title Rings for Tactics, points is just so minimal.

Thus, I think Something Else at Work interacts badly with general rings, even if most people play from Rumours and thus won't be bothered if you force a test on them. Perhaps you forgot to stack a ring there/you already tested one that turn: puff ring gone. The Rings Betrayal is funny but basically stalls any ring player a full turn at least, if not worse. Likewise Will of the Ring.
btw. I don't see how The Precious would make you want to test sooner rather than later...

Second, likewise the New Ringlord issue, it seems pretty much unrelated, except for the fact that ringhazards can be the proverbial drop to make it even less appealing as strategy. BttW is awful, anyone voting no on your UEP should have been removed from the forum :wink:

The Rings for Tactics is for FW not really that much harder than for heroes. It is a more complicated due to the 2 copy rule and the -1 tester, yet it also offers way more possiblities, and points with Rumor of the One. In fact, only the Blind to all Else (sp) requirement is a small bummer. So I don't see a real problem actually.

Third, the question is, should we improve cardmanagement and tactical advantages of the rings? Maybe that's overdone. If people now don't decide to play rings, is that because of the bad cardmanagement or risks involved, or because of low rewards? Personally I don't want to change the testing mechanics too much, a simple Ringlore V is enough. If you combine it with MR of Lore for example, it might get too big, especially in the underdeeps where you can play multiple rings easily (or thorough search). Rumor of the One makes ringplay too easy imo.

Thus, upping some tactical advantages is nice to underline specific strategies. I would prefer that over making rings very easy to test and play. I proposed Forgotten Scrolls to improve cardmanagement and testing of Lesser Rings (if your not Gandalf), because lesser rings might not be easy to improve tactically, since they're generic (btw. the testing ability should be permanent, not discardable).

Fourth, I added a Gollum ability to some cards, because I think My Precious is also a problem to ringplay, if only a minor issue, and I would like for Stinke/Gollum to be more connected to ringplay.

Fifth, I think many ringhazards will come from sideboard (depending on meta-game of course) because they have no general impact/use. That's also why Rolled is popular straight in deck, because it has an alternative use. If ringhazards come from sideboard, their timing becomes an issue, and the powerbalance is more difficult to address. Maybe we should strive to give ringhazards smaller effects but with an alternative general use. Or, create resources that can also have an effect on a ringplaying opponent. I like Wisdom to Wield therefore, maybe it can have a useful resource effect as well to boost it a little, now it's a definite sideboard.

The Rolled issue is easily dealt with. I like both Anduin and Ringlore proposals, because a dunk player would normally not play these cards since he can't afford the time. Thus it protects Rings for Tactics adequately. But discarding Ringlore to counter Rolled of course hampers the testing/cardmanagment, and costs 1 MP, therefore I would prefer a perm./short that can be used by an untapped sage. That also offers hazard flexibility (tap the sage somehow).
Stone-age did not end because man ran out of rocks.

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Bandobras Took
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Post by Bandobras Took » Fri May 16, 2008 5:51 pm

Great comments; a few thoughts.

The biggest stumbling block to FW ring tests come from Blind, but Rumor of the One does not help FW MPs from Rings because non-stage resources cannot modify FW MP totals. Also, while A New Ringlord is technically doable, it is still unwieldy. It's worth considering what impact any of these cards might have on non-hero dunking.

The Virtual Morannon is another consideration that I forgot to list. Since it is playable by FWs, has it obsoleted New Ringlord?

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