Q&A: March 2018

Two weeks ago I asked you for feedback and any questions you had about me or the blog. And boy, did you guys have questions. I have received numerous questions via the mail, private messages on either Discord or Facebook, as well as in the comment sections of various posts. So now is the time I answer them. Here we go:

Q: Do you attend events?

A: I have been going to the past Fellowship event. However, there aren’t as many LOTR LCG events here in the Netherlands, so I am not often seen in public.

Q: Do you play on OCTGN?

A: I have been playing on OCTGN a while back, but I prefer to use the physical copies of the cards I bought. I will swing back to OCTGN every now and then to test some decks if I don’t want to bring the entire collection with me. I haven’t really been playing many multiplayer games on OCTGN, as my microphone is pretty bad. But if you ask, perhaps I can find the time to play a game at some point.

Q: Do you build and post decks?

A: Yes, though I will not say that my decks are very good. I have been posting my decks on RingsDB well before I truly got more involved with the game. A recent search showed that I am ranked as the 12th highest reputation on there. You can check out my decks here. I haven’t updated most of them so they might not function as efficiently without any of the new cards.

Q: What is your shoe size?

A: 44

Q: If you could be any character in LOTR, which one would you be?

A: I have a love for Prince Imrahil, as he is noble and can hold himself in a fight. He is also quite a forgotten character because he wasn’t featured in the movies. I also share the same kind of eyes as Imrahil, which is also a nice bonus.

Q: What is your opinion on the movies?

A: I loved the LOTR movies, which got me to read the books, which snowballed into my current love for the lore of Middle Earth. The Hobbit movies had their moments, but they feel too stretched for me. I would rather watch the entire first trilogy than the second (extended of course).

Q: What is your favourite sphere of influence?

A: This is a tricky one, as I find myself using all spheres equally in my decks, with the exception of Tactics. I would say that I like the shenanigans that Lore provides. Scrying and the Victory Display archetype can be extremely powerful ways to handle a quest. I do also like Spirit, as that bleeds into the same kind of tricks.

Q: What is your favourite deck archetype?

A: I prefer to play Silvan decks, as I like how dynamic those decks have to be. Trap decks and Location control are also archetypes that I like to add to my decks. I am not really useful in combat scenario’s, as I like to handle combat with Direct Damage. This is not always possible, so I tend to focus more on the questing side of things.

Q: What is your name?

A: Daan Prins, but you can call me Dane, as that is easier to pronounce in English.

Q: What is your favourite colour?

A: A blend of dark blue and purple. HEX #582ad6 to be precise.

Q: What is the airspeed velocity of an unladen swallow?

A: What do you mean? An African or European swallow?

Q: What is your favourite quest?

A: Now here is a tricky question. I do tend to like the quests that do not involve a lot of combat but focus more on exploration. However, my favourite quests tend to shift a bit as my decks change. I also think that there are too many quests to pick just one favourite so I will answer them by cycle:

  • Shadows of Mirkwood: Passage through Mirkwood
  • Dwarrowdelf: Foundations of Stone
  • Against the Shadow: Encounter at Amon Dîn
  • Ringmaker: Celebrimbor’s Secret
  • Angmar Awakened: Intruders in Chetwood
  • Dream-chaser: Flight of the Stormcaller
  • Haradrim: Escape from Umbar (do not yet own everything)
  • Print on Demand: Ruins of Belegost
  • Saga: The Ring goes South

Q: Do you own everything of the game?

A: On a students budget? No, I’m afraid not. I currently own 2 Core Sets, all content up to the Sands of Harad Deluxe, Crossings of Poros, all saga expansions except Mountain of Fire, no Nightmare sets, a couple of POD quests. I keep track of my collection in a Drawings file:

Q: What languages do you speak?

A: Since there are not a lot of people in the world that speak Dutch, we are taught a couple of extra languages for international purposes. Because of this, I am bilingual in Dutch and English, and can speak a little in the following languages: Afrikaans, Swedish, Spanish, German, and French. However, English and Dutch are by far the most fluent. If you meant fictional languages, I do speak a bit of Sindarin and can recall a couple of Quenyan poems if needed. The odd words in Khuzdul and Adunaic can also come in handy from time to time.

Q: Do you play other games besides LOTR LCG?

A: Yes, though I haven’t invested as much money into those as I have with this game. I play a couple of party games with friends every Friday, usually Cards Against Humanity or Exploding Kittens. With my more nerdy friends, I play Terraforming Mars and Codenames often.

Q: Are you a cat or a dog person?

A: I own a cat, but I am definitely more of a gryphon person, to be honest.

Q: How do you store your cards?

A: This question is a little too big to answer right now, so I will probably to a more detailed article on it at some point. Let me just say that there are plenty of options to store your cards, and mine is not one of the cheapest. However, I do very much like my storage solution, as it makes for a very compact solution. This way I don’t have to bring everything with me if I go to play the game somewhere.

Q: What other fandoms are you interested in, besides Tolkien?

A: None, really. It is not that I haven’t read the books or watched movies/series, but they didn’t quite catch me like LOTR did. I do really like the Portal games by Valve though, and I own a little bit of merch from them (Aperture Science Jackets!). Pokemon is also something that I have played a lot, I collected the TCG cards when I was young, though I didn’t play the TCG a lot. I lost track of the series when it got around its fourth generation, so I can’t really name any Pokemon past that point. In case anyone asks the follow-up questions: Bulbasaur is my favourite Gen 1 starter, favourite overall Pokemon is Umbreon (Gen 2).

Q: How many people work on this blog?

A: At the moment I am the only consistent author of the blog, though I will give credit to Joseph Forster for writing some articles of his own. If you would like to join our team, please let me know.

Q: How long does it take to make an article, and how do you go about it?

A: It depends on what kind of article it is. I can write and finish a trait analysis in half hour if the trait has been rather undeveloped. Quest analyses take a bit longer, and I try to stretch it between 2 days at least. All in all, I think a quest takes about 3-4 hours to analyse. I work off of a template and divide the work into small paragraphs. This makes writing the articles less of a pain. The tips and tricks get filled in along the way. The data analysis is done usually the end. The links to the cards are done at the end of the article. I also use a spelling check in order to avoid any stupid mistakes. Remember that it isn’t my native language so mistakes can be made.

Q: What inspired you to start this blog?

A: I have been toying with the idea for a while before I took concrete steps to make this blog. It was a period of drought when looking at content from the major blogs, and not a lot of products were getting released. I also wanted to have a place where people can get answers to some questions they might have about the game in general, or certain scenario’s. There weren’t many scenario analyses out there at the time, they all focussed on the player cards instead. So I decided at the end of January to just go with it and start the blog. I chose the name Vision of the Palantir because a Palantir can show you many things, both good and evil that may await you on your journey. I had been playing with naming the blog after the mirror of Galadriel instead, but the mirror isn’t explained as detailed as the Palantiri. There is an entire chapter on them in Unfinished Tales, which I highly suggest you read.

 

I think that is all the questions covered. I will be taking questions for a future Q&A, but I have no idea when that one will be held. I hope to bring you the details on my storage solutions soon, and will, of course, continue my work on the scenarios. There has been an influx in people who want to do things in the community, so hopefully some will consider writing for this blog.

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