Month in Review: January 2020

A new year, and its first month brought us quite a lot of new content. Not only did I finally receive two new expansions for the game (last one was way back in July), but we also got more news articles from FFG. The blog also did good, although I did a lot of preparation of articles that I had to release on specific dates. So the quantity of articles may have been a little less than normal, but I did publish a little bit of everything to keep people happy. So let’s discuss the past month and see what the future has in store for the game and the blog.

January

FFG announced the 4th AP of the cycle, and I am very happy to see that it will contain a new Palantir for us to play with. While the Elostirion stone isn’t a very popular stone, I’ll take it over another sword-artifact. Hopefully we will see the other stones in the final APs. There was also some troubling news from FFI that they will stop development on the ACG, which is a shame. While the game had its draws, I feel like a lack of overlap with the LCG prevented many players from playing the game.

As for the blog, the month saw the majority of articles near the end of the month, as that was the time that new content arrived on my doorstep. I will try to publish articles more evenly throughout the months to come, but this month had to be an exception. Let’s see what has happened with the different series during the past month.

Scenario Analyses

The scenario analyses have moved on to the eighth cycle of the game, the Ered Mithrin cycle. I have started work on the Deluxe expansion by completing Journey Up the Anduin, and making good progress on Lost in Mirkwood. That one is quite a long quest, with 7 quest stages and a ton of encounter sets, so it will take some time to complete. From there, I will look to complete the Deluxe with the King’s Quest, which I hope to complete before March. From there, the rest of the cycle opens up, and will be completed hopefully before the summer. I will wait with the Vengeance of Mordor cycle until it has been fully completed, after which I will begin work on the final cycle of them all. That will take up the most of 2020, during which time I also want to redo the analyses of the first cycle with the compete cardpool in mind. A lot of work left to do, but as long as I enjoy doing it, it won’t feel as much work at all.

Nightmare Analyses

I surprise-dropped a nightmare article on the Dead Marshes quest this month. I intend to complete the entire first cycle in Noghtmare mode this year, so you still have a few more Nightmare articles to look forward to. I hope to buy the entire Dwarrowdelf cycle in Nightmare mode during Con of the Rings 2020, so I will have more articles to focus on in 2021 (that seems so far). But be sure to see the tougher scenarios of the first cycle in NM mode somewhere this year. We also have the Nightmare Saga Campaign analyses to look forward to, as work has begun in earnest on the first scenario. These articles will take some time to complete, so please be patient.

Player card reviews

This series continued with the Road to Rivendell expansion. With the series following the packs in progression style, we are going to see some big articles in the near future as Watcher in the Water, Foundations of Stone, and Shadow and Flame are some of the best packs to pick up if you are looking for powerful player cards. Me and Silblade are currently also in discussion on a second series where he takes a look at the different encounter sets from Sauron’s perspective. I hope to bring you this series sometime next month, so stay tuned for that.

Deckbuilding

There was no new deckbuilding article released this month, but the series will continue in the near future with its attempts to craft functioning decks to reliably beat the Angmar Awakened cycle. I’ll let you all know when the new articles go live.

Storage Hub

While no new articles have found their way into my mailbox this month, I do think that February will see some updates to the Storage Hub. I will keep quiet on the exact changes, but be sure to keep checking the page for updates. If you want to add to this hub, then be sure to message me with your solution. I would like some pictures and a description with which I can prepare an article for the hub.

Additional articles

I have a couple of additional articles planned for the future, but let’s first look at what was released this month. The First Impressions of City of Ulfast got released a day after I received the pack. Due to the delays, I had all the time in the world to write my thoughts on the player cards, and was really only waiting to play the quest. A week later, Wrath and Ruin also finally arrived, after much delay. This meant there were a lot of cards to review, and that I have 2 new quests to play over and over again. Besides First Impression articles, I also released a short thank-you article since the blog turned 2 years old this month. As for additional articles in the future, I expect to release Wrath and Ruin’s First Impressions article early February, or as soon as I get the pack. There are also rumours floating around that Challenge of the Wainriders is going to release soon. So that pack will deserve its own First Impressions article as well. I will also be sharing an article in the first week of February made by RedSpiderr who shares his views on what makes a good testing quest for your decks. It is an interesting read that will help you test your new decks.

The Future

With new content finally being released again by FFG, it will be a time of plenty again in the near future. A lot of new player cards and quests to enjoy. However, the end of the cycle is looming near, with only 4 more packs to release and just 2 new packs to be announced. At the rate that they are being released, we will likely run out of new content halfway through the year. But that is ok. As I have said before, there is a lot of content left to cover by this blog, and it might be enough to last us all the way through the hiatus.

On a personal note, it has been a few months since I graduated, and I will soon start my new job. While I am looking forward to actually making money, it will mean that the era of free time will be over. I will try and keep up the content, as I hopefully will get a job that involves a lot of waiting on experiments to finish. With the majority of the card pool memorized, and with Hall of Beorn providing the details, I will be able to sneak in some articles or updates to older articles while at work. It can mean that the frequency of articles will be a little lower than usual, but I am sure that the content that gets put out there will be enough to entertain you all. Remember that there is also a backlog of around 250 articles that have already been released in the two years of this blog’s release. Surely you haven’t read all of the articles yet, so that will keep you entertained while I try and work on the new articles.

I hope you are all doing well and will continue to love this game during this difficult year for it. Me and my fellow creators will make sure we are going to keep pumping out content for as long as there is stuff to cover and people to entertain!

~Aa’menealla nauva calen ar-malta~

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