Fog On The Barrow Downs: Playthrough

The Decks I have used for the quest, and the notes for them, can be found here and here. The narrative for the quest can be found here.

Encounter Deck Set-up:
Set each copy of Great Barrow, Standing Stones, and Hollow Circle aside, out of play.
Add Gandalf’s Delay to the staging area
Shuffle Gildor Inglorion into the encounter deck

Player Deck Set-up:
Attach The One Ring and Old Bogey-stories to Frodo Baggins.
Deck One draws opening hand
Deck Two draws opening hand

This quest is meant to be the harder of the two PoD saga quests, and while Old Forest wasn’t exactly a walk in the park, I am dreading what this quest might have in store for us. I’ve added more condition and threat control, as well as more hero buffing cards so we should be able to get through the ally hate, but I suppose we shall just have to wait and see. Maybe Tom Bombadil might deign to show his face this time?

Deck One
Threat: 23
Bilbo Baggins
Pippin (Lore)
Sam Gamgee

Starting Hand:
Lindon Navigator
Song of Wisdom
Friend of Friends
Ranger Provisions
Out of the Wild

Ok, not bad at all. Would like to have seen Bill the Pony, but with that Song of Lore there, and a Friend of Friends I can’t really turn this down in good faith. Let’s go with this one. Hopefully we will survive to regret the missing Bill.

Deck Two
Threat: 21
Merry (Tactics)
Tom Cotton
Fatty Bolger

Starting Hand:
The Galadhrim’s Greeting
Hobbit Pipe
Song of Travel
Ancient Mathom
Smoke Rings

So if this was a mono-spirit deck, this would be a near perfect draw. But it isn’t, so this isn’t. A Song of Travel is brilliant this early on, as is a Galadhrim’s Greeting. There’s just too much threat reduction here to turn it back I’m afraid so I will be keeping this hand too.

Turn No.1
Stage: 1B (0/1)
Active Location: –
Staging Area: –

Resource Phase
Deck One Hand (New Card in Bold):
Lindon Navigator, Song of Wisdom, Friend of Friends, Ranger Provisions, Out of the Wild, Fast Hitch, Ithilien Lookout

Bilbo (1), Pippin (1), Sam (1), Frodo (1)

So ideally to use the Lookout I also need Henamarth, so I would have the ability to strike with precision.

Deck Two Hand:
The Galadhrim’s Greeting, Hobbit Pipe, Song of Travel, Ancient Mathom, Smoke Rings, Feint

Merry (1), Tom Cotton (1), Fatty (1)

Planning Phase
Deck One:
Lindon Navigator
Song of Wisdom-Sam
Friend of Friends-Frodo

Lindon Navigator is a solid quester, Song of Wisdom sets up Sam for Burning Brand and accelerates our Lore resources, and beginning the Friend of Friends combo.

Deck Two:
Hobbit Pipe-Fatty
Song of Travel-Merry

So Song of Travel is needed to get this deck’s threat reduction going, and the pipes did some work for us last game, hopefully we’ll see a repeat.

Quest Phase
Trigger Stage 1B effect, skip quest phase

Travel Phase

Encounter Phase

Combat Phase

Refresh Phase
Raise each player’s threat by 1
Deck One: 24
Deck Two: 22

Resolve Stage 1B, advance to Stage 2A
Add Hollow Circle (0/3, 3 threat) to the staging area
Each player reveals one encounter card
1: I’m Waiting for You! (This is great as a first draw, but the surge could be troublesome)
1.1: Ancient Barrow (0/4, 2 threat) (Well we’ve only one ally in play, so there goes my quester. We will find you!)
2: Frozen by Fear (Again, better now than later but Doomed 1 and Surge is not nice) Raise each players’ threat by one
2.1: North Downs (0/5, 2 threat) (Well guess where we’re going to be travelling first. At least we’ve had no wights yet so this can’t hurt us yet.)

Turn No.2
Stage: 2B (0/14)
Active Location:
Staging Area:
Hollow Circle (0/3, 3 threat)
Ancient Barrow (0/4, 2 threat)
North Downs (0/5, 2 threat)

Resource Phase
Deck Two (New Card in Bold)
The Galadhrim’s Greeting, Ancient Mathom, Smoke Rings, Feint, A Test of Will, Quick Strike
Merry (2), Tom Cotton (1), Fatty (2), Frodo (1)

Now we have threat and combat cancellation up and running, but I would have preferred to see an ally or Dagger, perhaps both but then I’m just greedy that way.

Ranger Provisions, Out of the Wild, Fast Hitch, Ilthilien Lookout, Hobbit Cloak
Bilbo (1), Pippin (1), Sam (1)

Nice addition that’ll help get Sam up and running, again I would like to see an extra ally, or an Evening Star but what can you do?

Planning Phase
Deck Two:
The Galadhrim’s Greeting: Lower Deck One’s threat by 6 (So if I can get Deck one’s threat equal to or below 20 then their Secrecy cards will be a lot easier to play, helping accelerate that deck’s economy)

Deck One:
Out of the Wild: Tom Bombadil, Barrow-wight, Gildor Inglorion, Chill Fog, Cold-wight (Well look who decided to show up! This guy seems to like getting hit by Out of the Wild, and as for Gildor, well I suppose it can’t be helped. So Chill Fog is the single card I’m scared of most in this encounter deck so it’s a no-brainer that I’m going to get rid of it and quickly.) Add Out of the Wild and Chill Fog to the victory display, shuffle the encounter deck.
Hobbit Cloak-Frodo (So after some thought, I realised that no matter which deck ends up in the Great Barrow, they will have Frodo with them. Therefore it makes sense to have Frodo ready to do battle when the time comes)

Quest Phase
Bilbo-1
Pippin-2
Sam-3
Frodo-2
Merry-2
Tom-1

Total willpower:11

So any enemies that come off will not be engaging us this turn, nor indeed for a turn or two yet. I’m keeping aside Fatty to counter any enemy’s threat that winds up in the staging area so we can at least make a little bit of progress.

1: Ancient Barrow (0/4, 1 threat) (With no allies in play, this location completely whiffs)
2: Dark-wight (2 threat) (Well here they come. I’m probably going to have to engage this enemy next turn to stop the staging area getting choked.)

Total threat: 10

Win by 1, place 1 progress on Stage 2B (1/14)

Travel Phase
Travel to North Downs (0/5)

Encounter Phase

Combat Phase

Refresh Phase
Raise each player’s threat by 2
Deck Two: 25
Deck One: 21

Turn No.3
Stage: 2B (1/14)
Active Location: North Downs (0/5)
Staging Area:
Hollow Circle (0/3, 3 threat)
Ancient Barrow (0/4, 2 threat)
Ancient Barrow (0/4, 1 threat)
Dark-wight (2 threat)

Resource Phase
Deck One Hand (New Cards in Bold):
Ranger Provisions, Fast Hitch, Ithilien Lookout, Friend of Friends, Elf-stone
Bilbo (2), Pippin (1), Sam (1), Frodo (2)

Deck Two Hand:
Ancient Mathom, Smoke Rings, Feint, A Test of Will, Quick Strike, Bofur
Merry (2), Tom Cotton (2), Fatty (1)

Planning Phase
Deck One:
Friend of Friends-Sam (Classic, no arguments)
Fast Hitch-Frodo (Again, Frodo is definitely going to be doing work so he needs the extra actions more than most)
Ranger Provisions-North Downs
Elf-stone-North Downs

Deck Two:
Bofur
Trigger Bofur’s ability: Dunedain Hunter, Curious Brandybuck, Hobbit Pipe, The Galadhrim’s Greeting, Dagger of the Westernesse

See now this is how Bofur’s ability is supposed to work! None of that ridiculousness found in the last game where he draws the best cards in your deck only to have to shuffle them back in. We’ve found what we want and can continue on with our game with a happy heart.

Draw Dagger of Westernesse, shuffle Deck Two.

Dagger of Westernesse-Frodo (I know, I know. Merry gets the daggers. Well now Frodo gets a shot! With his upgrades, Frodo can ready on command once, quest for 3, attack for 3 (but hopefully 4), and defend for 3 (but hopefully 5). He’s no slouch, and no matter where he goes he’ll be backed up by either Sam or the Merry/Tom duo. If I’m wrong, we can always do this quest again I suppose.)

Quest Phase
Bilbo-1
Pippin-2
Sam-4
Frodo-3
Merry-2
Bofur-2
Fatty-1

Total willpower: 15

Right now the priority is to keep questing successfully. If I can’t then I’ll get threat-locked and quickly be overwhelmed. Deck One will engage the Dark-wight, definitely won’t kill it but can keep it occupied for a turn until we can. Tom is kept back as an emergency value.

1: Dreadful Song (…well it had to hit at some point. We can’t negate it with A Test of Will [curse you Peril!], and I’d prefer to keep Frodo’s resources for now. I suppose Bilbo can have it.)
Attach Dreadful Song to Bilbo, reduce his willpower to 0
2: Gildor Inglorion (Good to see you again! Really chuffed you cycled back after that shuffle from Out of the Wild! The main benefit is the extra willpower going forward, but the fact we can do more damage to the Dark-wight this turn is a lovely bonus.)

Total threat: 8

Win 7, explore North Downs, place 2 progress on Stage 2B (3/14).
Trigger Ranger Provisions
Trigger Elf-stone: Ithilien Lookout (Now we can kill the wight!)
Trigger Ithilien Lookout: Barrow-wight. Discard Barrow-wight. (Headshot! Things are coming together, which makes me nervous. Things never stay this good for long.)

Travel Phase
Travel to Ancient Barrow (0/4, 2 threat) (Time to rescue our Navigator)

Encounter Phase
Deck One optionally engages Dark-wight
Trigger Sam
Trigger Pippin: Ranger Spikes (Never played with this before, but on paper it looks good so we’ll give it a shot)
Exhaust Fast Hitch to ready Frodo

Combat Phase
Shadow Card dealt to Dark-wight
Sam defends (3)
Stone Ring revealed as Shadow
Dark-wight attacks (3), deals no damage
Frodo attacks (4), Gildor Inglorion attacks (2), Ithilien Lookout attacks (2), deals 7 damage, destroys Dark-wight

Cue the music!

Refresh Phase
Raise each player’s threat by 2
Deck One: 23
Deck Two: 27

Pay one Fellowship resource to keep Gildor Inglorion, Deck Two takes control.

Things are creeping up fast. Either we need more threat reduction, and quick, or we need to get ready to advance.

Turn No.4
Stage: 2B (3/14)
Active Location: Ancient Barrow (0/4)
Staging Area:
Hollow Circle (0/3, 3 threat)
Ancient Barrow (0/4, 1 threat)

Resource Phase
Deck Two Hand (New Cards in Bold):
Ancient Mathom, Smoke Rings, Feint, A Test of Will, Quick Strike, Hobbit Pipe, Halfling Determination (Again, no allies. Still, both are decent cards with good utility. I really do enjoy having Bilbo to help draw through my deck that bit quicker.)
Merry (1), Tom Cotton (1), Fatty (2), Frodo (2)

Deck One Hand:
Ranger Spikes, Naith Guide (Not bad at all. Would have ideally liked a Miner or a Preserver, but I will gladly take this)
Bilbo (3), Pippin (2), Sam (2)

Planning Phase
Deck Two:
Hobbit Pipe-Frodo (Just for the willpower boost after I do Smoke Rings during the quest phase)

Deck One:
Naith Guide: Frodo (So that if an enemy comes off that we need to kill, we can engage without needing to use our Fast Hitch)
Ranger Spikes (I’m now in the position that if I draw a Chill Fog, I will have to raise each player’s threat by 10, stripping me of resources and pushing me over the engagement cost for Barrow-wight (33) for both decks and on the edge of the Cold-wight (38) for one of them. Never thought I’d complain for having too many resources.)

Quest Phase
Pippin-2
Sam-4
Naith Guide-1
Ithilien Lookout-1
Frodo-3
Gildor-3
Fatty-1

Total willpower: 15

Anything but a Chill Fog!

1: Dark-wight (2 threat). Trigger Ranger Spikes, attach to Dark-wight. (So I think, think, this means I can just leave this wight in the staging area contributing 0 threat? That sounds a bit OP, but I can’t see anything wrong with it. Let me know if I’m doing it wrong, because if I am then this whole quest will need to be redone.)
2: Barrow-wight (3 threat) (Yes, not Chill Fog! We can deal with this enemy with Deck Two I think.)

Total threat: 7

Deck Two plays Smoke Rings, boosts Frodo and Fatty’s willpower by 1.
Exhaust Hobbit Pipe (Frodo) and Hobbit Pipe (Fatty): Ring Mail, Goblin-cleaver (More combat control is always a welcome thing, guess who’s getting the Ring Mail…)

Total willpower: 17

Win by 10, explore Ancient Barrow, return Lindon Navigator to Deck One’s control. Place 6 progress on Stage 2B (9/14)

And there we have it. Our engine seems to be getting there, we just need to boost our heros up a bit more and then I think we can progress to Stage 3B.

Travel Phase
Travel to Ancient Barrow (0/4)

Encounter Phase
Deck Two optionally engages Barrow-wight

Combat Phase
Shadow Card dealt to Barrow-wight
Frodo defends (5)
Ancient Barrow revealed as Shadow (And there goes the last Ancient Barrow. Now my allies can sleep a bit easier)
Barrow-wight attacks (5), deals no damage
Exhaust Fast Hitch to ready Frodo
Frodo attacks (4), Merry attacks (4), deals 7 damage, destroys Barrow-wight

I am more than happy with the way Frodo has turned out. Once I get Ring Mail on him I think that’ll be him good to go for the rest of the quest.

Refresh Phase
Raise each player’s threat by 2
Deck Two: 27
Deck One: 25

Pay one Fellowship resource to keep Gildor Inglorion, Deck One takes control.

Turn No.5
Stage: 2B (9/14)
Active Location: Ancient Barrow (0/4)
Staging Area:
Hollow Circle (0/3, 3 threat)
Dark-wight (0 threat)

Resource Phase
Deck One (New Cards in Bold):
Frodo’s Intuition, Wellinghall Preserver (As much as I love Frodo’s Intuition, I can’t afford it right now or I won’t be able to keep around Gildor. This unfortunately won’t change until such a time as I can play another Ranger Provisions)
Bilbo (3), Pippin (2), Sam (1), Frodo (2)

Deck Two:
Ancient Mathom, Feint, Test of Will, Quick Strike, Halfling Determination, Ring mail, Goblin-cleaver, Longbeard Sentry
Merry (2), Tom Cotton (2), Fatty (3)

Planning Phase
Deck One:
Wellinghall Preserver (I didn’t get to see this card at all in my previous game so I’m excited to see him do some work here.)

Deck Two:
Ring Mail-Frodo (See above comments for Frodo)
Ancient Mathom-Ancient Barrows (Hopefully we can get some extra cards for Deck One so that they can actually spend some of their resources before another Chill Fog appears and eats then all.)

Quest Phase
Pippin-2
Sam-4
Frodo-3
Naith Guide-1
Bofur-2
Fatty-1

Total willpower: 13

So the plan is to finish off this Ancient Barrow and travel to Hollow Circle next turn so we can advance to Stage 3B the following turn.

1: Long Groping Arm (I’m going to let this one go off I think. We’ve in a decent enough position that we can take an enemy and hit back and kill it.) Search the encounter discard pile and reveal Dark-wight engaged with Deck One. Trigger Sam, trigger Pippin: Fast Hitch. (Now Sam is ready with 3 attack/ defense and a whopping 5 willpower.)
2: North Downs (0/5, 2 threat) (And now this is even better! I can defend with Sam’s willpower before attacking back with Frodo, Gildor and the Ithilien Lookout.)

Total threat: 5

Total willpower: 14

Win by 9, explore Ancient Barrow, place 5 progress on Stage 2B (14/14).
Trigger Ancient Mathom: Ranger Provisions, None Return, The Evening Star (Yes, meh and yes. Ranger Provisions we’ve just talked about above, None Return is handy but will need to be timed right to get the most out of it and The Evening Star is always good, and just gets better as the game goes on and more get added to the discard pile.)

Travel Phase
Travel to Hollow Circle.
Trigger Hollow Circle: Deck One find Barrow-wight in the encounter deck and engages it. Trigger Sam, trigger Pippin: Rosie Cotton (I’m beginning to fall in love with Pippin’s ability now)
Deck Two finds Dark-wight in the encounter discard pile and engages it.

Encounter Phase

Combat Phase
As in The Old Forest, I know all enemies resolve attacks before I attack back, as they did as I played the game, but for the ease of writing this out in a clear manner, I will deal with each enemy separately.
Exhaust Fast Hitch to ready Frodo
Shadow Card dealt to Dark-wight
Sam defends (6) against Dark-wight
Frozen by Fear revealed as Shadow
Dark-wight attacks (3), deals no damage
(The Shadow effect on Frozen by Fear prevents me from attacking back)

Deck Two plays Feint on Barrow-wight, preventing it from attacking Deck One
Frodo attacks (4), Gildor attacks (2), Ithilien Lookout attacks (2), destroys Barrow-wight
Deck One plays None Return, adds None Return and Barrow-wight to the victory display

Shadow Card dealt to Dark-wight
Tom Cotton defends (1) against Dark-wight
Stone Ring revealed as Shadow
Dark-wight attacks (3), deals 2 damage to Tom Cotton
Merry attacks (3), deals 2 damage to Dark-wight

So we’re all still alive (just). But now with two Dark-wights engaged this means I can’t trigger Ranger Provisions so there’s no point in playing it yet. One thing is for sure, we need to clear out North Downs so Tom can do some proper defending again.

Refresh Phase
Raise each player’s threat by 2
Deck One: 27
Deck Two: 29

Pay one Fellowship resource to keep Gildor Inglorion, Deck Two takes control.
Trigger Dreadful Song to raise Deck One’s threat by 1.

Things are beginning to heat up around here. Let’s push onward!

Turn No.6
Stage: 2B (16/14)
Active Location: Hollow Circle (0/3)
Staging Area:
Dark-wight (0 threat)
North Downs (2 threat)

Resource Phase
Deck Two (New Cards in Bold):]
A Test of Will, Quick Strike, Halfling Determination, Goblin Cleaver, Longbeard Sentry, Secret Vigil, Dagger of the Westernesse (This new Dagger gives me an idea…)
Merry (2), Tom Cotton (1), Fatty (3), Frodo (2)

Deck One:
Frodo’s Intuition, Ranger Provisions, Evening Star, Fast Hitch, Rosie Cotton, Ranger Spikes (There we go! Still no Miner, but I can live with getting this instead)
Bilbo (2), Pippin (1), Sam (2)

Planning Phase
Deck Two:
Secret Vigil-Dark-wight (The one engaged with Deck Two)
Dagger of the Westernesse-Merry
Quick Strike:
Merry attacks Dark-wight (6), deals 5 damage, destroys it.
Trigger Secret Vigil, lower each Deck’s threat by 2
(And now we can get Ranger Provisions going!)

Deck One:
Ranger Provisions-Hollow Circle
Ranger Spikes
Fast Hitch-Sam
This should mean we can advance to the next stage this turn and get on to the home stretch of this quest. I don’t know about you, but I think we may have outstayed our welcome in these parts.

Quest Phase
Pippin-2
Sam-4
Naith Guide-1
Lindon Navigator-2
Bofur-2

Total willpower: 11

We want to make sure we can get rid of Hollow Circle this turn, but still have enough characters left over to deal with whatever else may come.

1: Cold-wight (2 threat) Trigger Ranger Spikes, attach to Cold-wight. (And again, Ranger Spikes works its magic. Seriously though, if I’m playing this wrong let me know.)
2: Long Groping Arm: Adds Dark-wight’s 2 threat to the staging area (Not too bad, that doesn’t change the outcome of anything so we’re all good.)

Total threat: 4

Win by 7, explore Hollow Circle, complete Stage 2B. Trigger Stage 3A, Deck Two adds Standing Stones to the staging area, Deck One reveals Long Groping Arm from the encounter deck. Shuffle the encounter discard pile and all copies of Great Barrow into the encounter deck.
Trigger Ranger Provisions.
Exhaust Fast Hitch to ready Sam.

Trigger Lindon Navigator: discard The Evening Star

Well here we are. I’m tempted to just bite the bullet and dive on in to the Great Barrow. The longer we linger, the more danger of a second Great Barrow being revealed. By the way, Eru smiles on us that Long Groping Arm was revealed as that was the only encounter card that could not have hurt us at all.

Travel Phase
Travel to Standing Stones (0/4)
Trigger Standing Stones: Deck Two reveals Great Barrow from the encounter deck, shuffles the encounter deck.
Trigger Great Barrow: Deck Two removes each character it controls from the quest and creates their own staging area. Then it advances to a separate stage 4A by itself. Deck Two reveals Dark-wight from the encounter deck and puts it into its staging area. Deck Two discards Bofur and Gildor Inglorion.

Encounter Phase

[Deck Two]
Deck Two optionally engages Dark-wight

[Deck One]

Combat Phase

[Deck Two]
Shadow card dealt to Dark-wight
Frodo defends (6) against Dark-wight
Exhaust Fast Hitch to ready Frodo
Dreadful Song revealed as Shadow
Dark-wight attacks (3), deals no damage
Frodo attacks (4), Merry attacks (4), destroys Dark-wight

[Deck One]
Shadow card dealt to Dark-wight
Sam defends Dark-wight (4)
I’m Waiting for You! revealed as Shadow
Dark-wight attacks (4), deals no damage
Bilbo attacks (1), Wellinghall Preserver attacks (2), Ithilien Lookout attacks (2), Lindon Navigator attacks (1), deals 6 damage to Dark-wight

So what do we think about this method of differentiating between staging areas? Are the square brackets clear enough? Let me know what you guys think.

Refresh Phase
Raise each player’s threat by 1
Deck Two: 28
Deck One: 27

Trigger Dreadful Song to raise Deck One’s threat by 1.

Turn No.7

[Deck Two]
Stage: 4B (0/9)
Active Location: N/A
Staging Area: –

[Deck One]
Stage: 3B (0/16)
Active Location: Standing Stones (0/4)
Staging Area:
Dark-wight (0 threat)
North Downs (2 threat)
Cold-wight (0 threat)
Great Barrow (1 threat)

We need to get Deck Two back to the main staging area of the quest as quickly as we possibly can.

Resource Phase

[Deck Two]
Deck Two Hand (New Cards in Bold):
A Test of Will, Halfling Determination, Goblin-cleaver, Longbeard Sentry, West Road Traveller
Merry (2), Tom Cotton (2), Fatty (4), Frodo (4)

I suppose the thematic question would be, how is there a West Road Traveller in a Great Barrow? Was she there waiting for them or follow them in?

[Deck One]
Deck One Hand:
Frodo’s Intuition, Rosie Cotton, Bill the Pony, Miner of the Iron Hills
Bilbo (1), Pippin (1), Sam (2)

The rules for the separate staging area means that as far as Bilbo’s ability is concerned, Deck One is the first player. And so at last there is Bill. And that cursed miner! Welcome to the party boys!

Planning Phase

[Deck Two]
Deck Two:
Longbeard Sentry
West Road Traveller

We can now use the Longbeard to defend so we can throw in Tom’s willpower into the mix.

[Deck One]
Deck One:
Bill the Pony
Rosie Cotton
Miner of the Iron Hills: Discard Dreadful Song from Bilbo

Now Bilbo can get back to questing and we can stop having to raise our threat more than we have to.

Quest Phase

[Deck Two]
Deck Two plays Halfling Determination on Frodo
Frodo-4 (Friend of Friends is no longer working, alas.)
Merry-2
Tom Cotton-1
Fatty-1
West Road Traveller-2

Total willpower: 10

1: Dreadful Song (Absolutely not!) Deck Two plays A Test of Will to cancel the When Revealed effect of Dreadful Song.

Total threat: 0

Win by 10, complete Stage 4B, explore Great Barrow, add it to the victory display. Deck Two returns to Stage 3B.

Right, we’re through the Great Barrow, now to join up with Deck One and see how we’re doing.

[Deck One]
Bilbo-1
Pippin-2
Sam-3
Rosie Cotton-2
Ithilien Lookout-1
Wellinghall Preserver-3
Naith Guide-1
Bill the Pony-1

Total willpower: 14

Well there is no way we can finish this quest phase this turn, but the least we can do is give it a good stab.

1: North Downs (2 threat) (You again!)

Total threat: 5

Win by 9, explore Standing Stones, add it to the victory display, place 5 progress on Stage 3B (5/16)

Nearly there, we just need to wait on Deck Two escaping the Great Barrow…

And the band is back together! Let’s finish this!

Travel Phase
Travel to North Downs (0/4)

Encounter Phase
Exhaust Fast Hitch to ready Sam
Exhaust Fast Hitch to ready Frodo

Combat Phase
Shadow card dealt to Dark-wight
Sam defends Dark-wight (4)
Cold-wight revealed as Shadow
Dark-wight attacks (4), deals no damage
Frodo attacks (4), destroying Dark-wight

And finally it is destroyed. Home stretch now, all in!

Refresh Phase
Raise each player’s threat by 1
Deck Two: 29
Deck One: 28

Turn No.8
Stage: 3B (5/16)
Active Location: North Downs (0/5)
Staging Area:
Dark-wight (0 threat)
Cold-wight (0 threat)
North Downs (2 threat)

Resource Phase
Deck One Hand (New Cards in Bold):
Frodo’s Intuition, Out of the Wild, Dunedain Warning
Bilbo (1), Pippin (1), Sam (1), Frodo (5)

Well I suppose an Out of the Wild would be good just to make sure we reduce the chance of a surge train as much as possible. The Warning is a little too little, a little too late however.

Deck Two Hand:
Goblin-cleaver, The Galadhrim’s Greeting
Merry (2), Tom Cotton (1), Fatty (2)

Extra threat reduction to help out our score? Why not?

Planning Phase
Deck One:
Frodo’s Intuition: Naith Guide, Ithilien Lookout, Frodo’s Intuition, Burning Brand (Another Frodo’s Intuition? Do we dare?)
Frodo’s Intuition: Rosie Cotton, Song of Kings, The Evening Star, None Return (Oh, that was glorious!)
Deck Two:
The Galadhrim’s Greeting: Lower Deck Two’s threat by 6.

Quest Phase
Bilbo-3
Pippin-4
Sam-6
Frodo-5
Rosie Cotton-2
Ithilien Lookout-1
Wellinghall Preserver-3
Naith Guide-1
Bill the Pony-1
Lindon Navigator-2
Merry-2
Tom Cotton-1
Fatty-1
West Road Traveller-2

Total willpower: 34

This should be it. What does the encounter deck have for us now?

1: Barrow-wight (3 threat) (Not too bad at all)
2: Chill Fog (…one last dart to hurl?) Discard 4 resources, raise each players threat by 4.

Total threat: 5

Win by 29. Explore North Downs, complete Stage 3B.

Victory.

Victory display: Out of the Wild (0), Chill Fog (0), None Return (0), Barrow-wight (0), Hollow Circle (3), Standing Stones (3), Great Barrow (5)

Score: 33 threat + 32 threat, 80 threat for turns taken, 2 damage on Tom Cotton, -11 for victory points=136

So that was Fog on the Barrow Downs. Not the hardest quest out there, but by no means was it a walk in the park. I think I got off lightly with some of my draws off the encounter deck, if the wrong treachery had come off at the wrong time(Frozen by Fear/Chill Fog) that would have been crippling and I’m not sure if we would have survived. In terms of my decks, everything still seems to be running well, though I think I’m going to scale back on the victory display cards in the future. None Return will still be good for the Ringwraith quests, but I think Leave No Trace and Out of the Wild will be cut. Ranger Spikes worked wonders in this quest, I will definitely be using these in my deck again in the future. My hobbit heroes keep doing work, which I suppose is a good thing considering I’m stuck with them until Rivendell. MVP will have to be Fast Hitch, allowing my hobbits, especially Frodo, to pull double duty and keep on going, with an honourable mention going toward Ranger Spikes which I have no doubt saved me a character or two from extra attacks.

And so without seeing Mr Tom Bombadil during either of ‘his’ quests we managed to get through The Old Forest and The Barrow Downs. I suppose he really just didn’t care about trees eating us or ghosts stabbing us. Maybe he’s on holiday? I suppose that may be a thematic explanation as to where he is if I play the Ho! Tom Bombadil! boon card. Anyway, what did you guys think of the playthrough? Did I make any wrong decisions or even (Eru forbid!) any mistakes? Let me know below.

Add Ho! Tom Bombadil! To the campaign pool.

FFG- Fog on the Barrow Downs

2 thoughts on “Fog On The Barrow Downs: Playthrough

  1. I expect some day to get around to doing an entire campaign, but I currently only have the first three Saga boxes and don’t want to start unless I can finish (I’m looking at you, George RR Martin). With that in mind, have you previously played the entire campaign through? I get the impression that the first campaign of each box gives you a window to change a hero without having to incur the threat penalty. Does the addition of these Gen Con quests leave you with five quests before you can change heroes at the start of The Road Darkens?

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    1. I’m afraid I haven’t played through the Saga quests yet, this is actually my first time doing so. I wanted to wait until I had the full set before attempting it. I’ve deliberately kept myself as spoiler-free as possible with the campaign cards, only reading them as I come to each quest so I don’t plan out the entire campaign from Day 1 and to try and keep it fresh in my mind. The addition of the GenCon quests does mean it will be five quests with these Hobbit heroes, but don’t worry we’re over halfway through. After that, it’ll be four quests (Road Darkens + The Uruk-hai), two quests (Helms Deep + Road to Isengard), three quests (Land of Shadow), three quests (Flame of the West) and you can change heroes between each of the quests in Mountain of Fire. So you should see about half a dozen different hero lineups by the time the Ring is destroyed.

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