Deck: Rohan Cavalry

La charge de Rohan

One of the best things about The Lord of the Rings: The Card Game is how well it represents the peoples and events from Tolkien’s writings. In many cases, these cards are some of the most powerful cards in the game. In instances where the power of these cards is not as immediately obvious, some players will express frustration. I prefer to see these cards as a challenge. Forth Eorlingas is one such card. While thematically brilliant, it represents something of a strategic conundrum. As someone who finds great enjoyment in building unique decks, these are some of cards that I enjoy most. Powerful, but not in as obvious of way as many other power cards, these kind of effects require a carefully-crafted deck.

Forth-EorlingasAs a 2 cost Tactics event, I’m sure many players immediately ignored this card as too expensive. To be fair, I was also rather skeptical at first glance. However, when you look at cards like Spear of the Mark, along with some other effects like Unseen Strike which have been around for a long time and have never quite found a niche, the broader picture starts to become more clear. Let’s be clear from the outset: this is a very specific deck, and it will not fair well against all scenarios. However, like any niche tool, when it works – it works to perfection.

For the most part, this deck remains very thematic. The one exception is Steward of Gondor, which was a necessary concession given the expense of this particular combo. The idea is to load up Háma with as many resources as possible. This allows us to combine Háma’s ability to recycle Tactics events when he attacks with the effect of Forth Eorlingas to allow him and his compatriots to attack the staging area. Thematically, this represents the Rohirrim riding down their enemies before the hapless whelps know what has hit them.

With Théodred and Éowyn committing to the quest each round, this strategy at first seems impossible. However, each of the Rohan heroes can then take advantage of Steed of the Mark to quest and immediately ready by spending a resource. Errand-riders, while not of Rohan, arrive on the scene to help with resource smoothing. This and the resource acceleration from Théodred and Steward of Gondor are needed to help pay for the various mounts and weapons that form the core of our strategy.

Spear-of-the-MarkForth Eorlingas is a rather expensive, at two resources, but the hope is that we won’t need to use it every round. Ideally, with the help of Spear of the Mark, Dagger of Westernesse and Firefoot, a single foray into the staging area should fell an enemy before they ever get close enough to swing their sword. Then, we can spend another round or two to build up resources and rally our troops.

With the high willpower that is the hallmark of the Rohan trait, along with support from Snowbourn Scout and West Road Traveller, we should be able to handle locations without too much of a problem. For scenarios with troublesome treacheries or condition attachments, feel free to add A Test of Will or Power of Orthanc. For being so tightly-focused on the cavalry theme, this deck still has some very real flexibility.

With such a reliance on the mount and weapon attachments, card draw becomes paramount. This is where Westfold Horse-breeder, Ancient Mathom and Foe-Hammer all play important roles. In case of low-engagement enemies that slip between our ranks, Feint, Sneak Attack and Quick Strike are all excellent solutions. Another trick which is quite fun is to use Westfold Outrider, after enemy attacks, to pull an enemy that would have engaged the following round. Because enemy attacks have already occurred, we get a full round of attacks on the enemy, risk-free.

With a strategy based primarily on staging area attack, threat control is of vital importance, so Gandalf and the Galadhrim’s Greeting should be used accordingly. One last note: the quantities in this deck were specifically designed to work with a single Core Set. For those with multiple Core Sets, or who don’t mind using proxies, an extra copy of some of the key cards like Feint and Steward of Gondor can help improve this deck’s consistency. Fare thee well, and ride forth into glorious victory!

HamaTheodredEowyn

Heroes
Háma (TLD)
Éowyn (Core)
Théodred (Core)

Allies: 16
Snowbourn Scout (Core) x2
Westfold Horse-breeder (VoI) x3
Errand-rider (HoN) x3
Westfold Outrider (VoI) x2
West Road Traveller (RtM) x3
Gandalf (Core) x3

Attachments: 18
Ancient Mathom (AJtR) x3
Dagger of Westernesse (TBR) x3
Spear of the Mark (TMV) x3
Firefoot (TDT) x2
Rohan Warhorse (VoI) x2
Steed of the Mark (TMV) x3
Steward of Gondor (Core) x2

Events: 16
Foe-Hammer (TH:OHaUH) x3
Unseen Strike (TRG) x2
Sneak Attack (Core) x2
Feint (Core) x2
Forth Eorlingas! (TMV) x3
Quick Strike (Core) x2
The Galadhrim’s Greeting (Core) x2

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13 Responses to Deck: Rohan Cavalry

  1. shipwreck says:

    This hero lineup was my first successful thematic deck, but I never revisited it with all the new Rohan toys. Feeling tapped for inspiration, I will definitely be stealing this for the next card game night. Thanks!

  2. You only have 2x Steward of Gondor… is this because you’re limited to a single Core set? If you have 3x, I would just because it seems so dependent on getting the resources over to Hama since such a large portion of the deck is Tactics.

    In any case, it looks like a fun deck, but I think I already have too large of a backlog of decks to test. 🙂

    • Beorn says:

      As I mentioned at the bottom of the post, I have intentionally designed this deck to work with only 1 Core Set. For those with multiple Core Sets, or who don’t mind proxies, it would make the deck more consistent to include an extra copy of the essential cards like Steward of Gondor.

  3. Micah says:

    I always look forward to your decklists, B. What would you consider removing to make room for the cards you mentioned? Or would you simply make it a over-50 card deck?

    • Beorn says:

      It depends on the quest. For scenarios with less enemies, you might be able to cut Quick Strike or Westfold Outrider. If there are fewer locations to clear, Ancient Mathom could be cut. Firefoot is also included more for thematic reasons (since it only gives +1 without Éomer) so you should be able to replace it for those other cards. Let me know if you have a specific quest in mind and I can provide a more detailed answer.

  4. shtlotr says:

    Fun looking deck list! Can’t wait to give it a go 🙂

  5. kwitee says:

    Hello, thanks for excelent article and great job with this blog (and community)! I have one question: what do you mean by proxies? Is it some kind of bounce mechanic to recycle through dead cards?

    • Beorn says:

      Thanks, kwitee. Proxies are cards that are used to represent a card that you don’t have enough copies of. For example, since there are only 2 copies of Steward of Gondor in the Core Set you could include Celebrian’s Stone in your deck as a proxy of the third copy of Steward of Gondor. When you draw it, you would treat it just like a Steward of Gondon. Some people who proxy use sleeves and slip a piece of paper into the sleeve with the name of the card being proxied.

      • kwitee says:

        Thanks. This is not a method that I would like to start using but I can undestand that somebody else would. I guess I am stuck with necessity of buying second core set.

  6. wehehe says:

    An interesting list. I’ve been playing for long time with an Eowyn – Hama – Dunhere deck, with a similar idea, but in my case it was a deck focused on using Dunhere to attack the staging area because I didn’t think I could rely on drawing forth eorlingas each game.

    How do you handle first turns against quests with low-engagement cost enemies and considerable attack (3-4). Chumpbloking and feint are enough to you? In my case they usually didn’t. (Maybe I used too expensive allies). Also, I think Goblin-cleaver is amazing in this kind of deck.

  7. Eucatastrophe says:

    I love decks like this! I struggled to find a dwarf deck that I actually liked playing until I made a Balin / Nori / Oin deck to *only* play underground quests with. It’s actually a pretty weak deck Attack / Defense wise, but with cards like “Ever My Heart Rises” and Zigil Miner, it takes off, gets your threat plummeting, and really feels like the Dwarves are getting stronger and stronger as they go deeper and deeper into their mountain home. These are my favorite kinds of decks.

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