News for November 2011
The Dwarves Return to Mirkwood 26
A preview of the sixth Adventure Pack for The Lord of the Rings: The Card Game
The Lord of the Rings: The Card Game | Published 21 November 2011

Dain had come. He had hurried on through the night, and so had come upon them sooner than they had expected. Each one of his folk was clad in a hauberk of steel mail that hung to his knees, and his legs were covered with hose of a fine and flexible metal mesh, the secret of whose making was possessed by Dain’s people. The dwarves are exceedingly strong for their height, but most of these were strong even for dwarves.
    –The Hobbit

Many years after Dáin led his host to Erebor and joined in the Battle of Five Armies, he once again lends his aid to the cause of good. In Return to Mirkwood, the King under the Mountain, Dáin II appears as a new Leadership hero for The Lord of the Rings: The Card Game.

King under the Mountain

The game’s fourth Dwarf hero, Dáin Ironfoot (Return to Mirkwood, 116) lends greater balance and viability to your all-Dwarf fellowships. He joins Glóin (Core Set, 3) among the Dwarven Leadership, allowing you to accelerate your Leadership focus, or you can build a deck to partner Dáin with Gimli (Core Set, 4) and Thalin (Core Set, 6), who represent the Tactics sphere.

While the Tactics sphere remains light on Willpower, Dáin Ironfoot boosts all your Dwarf characters, meaning that Gimli and Thalin can quest for a combined five Willpower, instead of three, and each Veteran Axehand (Core Set, 28) is able to contribute a single Willpower as well. If you can find a way to play Lore allies, the Erebor Hammersmith (Core Set, 59) and the Miner of the Iron Hills (Core Set, 61) become truly versatile characters under Dáin’s leadership. Usually best played for his response or to protect your heroes from powerful enemies, the Miner is one of the game’s strongest allies, and he gains added utility when he’s also able to assist those heroes sent to quest.

Meanwhile, it’s arguable that warriors like Gimli and the Veteran Axehand are best suited not to questing, but to destroying enemies in ferocious combat. Dáin can help with that, as well. While he’s standing, all Dwarf characters gain one Attack Strength. Dwarves are remarkably strong for their height, and Dáin’s followers are truly remarkable, even among the Dwarves.

Dáin in action

The most obvious limitation upon Dáin Ironfoot’s abilities are that he must remain standing in order to inspire your other Dwarves, and there are, of course, severe drawbacks to a character who doesn’t quest, defend, or attack. Especially when you consider Dáin’s three Defense Strength and five Hit Points, you want this hero to help out and carry his weight in combat.

This is where a copy of Unexpected Courage (Core Set, 57) might come handy. Arguably the game’s strongest attachment, Unexpected Courage makes any hero better, but played on Dáin, Unexpected Courage can make an entire deck strategy better. The King under the Mountain can exhaust to defend an enemy that might kill less resilient heroes, then ready to aid your other Dwarves in their attacks. With two Attack Strength of his own, he can make his own impact in combat, especially when armed with a Dwarven Axe (Core Set, 41). If the staging area is free of enemies, you may instead choose to commit Dáin to the quest, then exhaust Unexpected Courage to ready him. Dáin can then contribute his Willpower to the quest and still boost the Willpower of all Dwarves, including himself.

The mines of Moria

With the Khazad-dûm Expansion, two Dwarven heroes, a wealth of new Dwarven allies, and Dwarf-specific attachments and events right around the corner, fans of the short and surly heroes have every reason to be excited about the fantastic options they’ll have to explore within and without the mines of Moria. As players gain greater possibilities for Dwarf decks, Dáin Ironfoot becomes a more and more impressive leader, boosting your Dwarves… and those of your fellow players.

Look for Dáin Ironfoot to lead the Dwarves to glory along their Return to Mirkwood. This final Adventure Pack in the Shadows of Mirkwood cycle is coming soon!

The Lord of the Rings: The Card Game is a cooperative card game that puts 1-2 players (or up to four with an additional Core Set) in control of the most powerful characters and artifacts of Middle-earth. Players will select heroes, gather allies, acquire artifacts, and coordinate their efforts to face Middle-earth’s most dangerous fiends. The Living Card Game format allows players to customize their gaming experience with monthly Adventure Pack expansions to the core game.

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Comments (26)

Published: 11/21/2011 11:00:20 AM

Yeah, Courage seems so very fit for Dain. Not the Spirit sphere though. Of course, you can Song your way through, or put the Belt on Gloin, for instance. The situation may change yet again once there is a Spirit Dwarf in Moria.

Published: 11/21/2011 10:54:41 AM

Dain looks beautiful: both art and especially gameplay!

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