Month in Review: May 2021

Another month has passed, and we are starting to see signs of the approaching summer. While I personally don’t have any plans for the summer, I hope we can get the holidays back in time for Con of the Rings later this year! The past month has been a relatively quiet one on the blog, but some large articles were published that we will discuss. My focus has been on the loot for this year, which is coming along nicely. Let’s review the past month and look ahead at the articles to come in the near future.

May

No news from FFG this month, except the announcement that FFG won’t be participating at GenCon this year. That means that our chances for a GenCon scenario this year are pretty slim. Hopefully, they surprise us with another scenario like Hunt for the Dreadnaught after the summer, but with the game on hiatus, there is no telling if any more official content will be published this year. But not to worry, for the fan-made content is still going strong! A long-extended Party has announced their first AP to be released this quarter, so expect the download links to be available next month. I won’t yet cover the AleP content on the blog, as I would like to prioritize finishing the official content first. But eventually, we will start to dip our toe into fan-made content if official content is still far off.

Scenario analysis

This month saw the completion of the Challenge of the Wainriders scenario analysis. This one took quite some time to complete, thanks to the quest having 6 stages that you must traverse twice. The quest also has some rather unique mechanics, but the article should help those players struggling to outpace the Wainriders. I myself will be continuing the scenario analyses of the Vengeance of Mordor cycle with The City of Ulfast, which I hope to finish next month. At this pace, we hope to bring you the complete Vengeance of Mordor cycle by the end of the summer, as only 2 other scenarios remain after this.

Nightmare analysis

I completed the Nightmare Khazad-Dum expansion with my analysis of the Flight From Moria expansion this month. I will be diving into the Dwarrowdelf cycle after I complete the City of Ulfast, but I don’t expect to release NM Redhorn Gate in June, probably July (bit anti-climactic, releasing a snow article in the middle of summer, but I’m not gonna wait half a year). One of the co-authors that had hoped to help with the cycle dropped out, but I am still confident that I can complete the cycle before the end of the year. If there is anyone willing to help out, it would be appreciated!

One update on the Nightmare front is that I now own all the Nightmare expansions! This month saw the arrival of my final 3 packs, meaning that I now have the tools to complete all the scenario analyses of the 6 Nightmare cycles and all of the Saga stuff as well. This will carry the blog for a long time into the future, so don’t worry about us running out of content any time soon! A big shout-out to everyone who has helped me get these 50 Nightmare packs over the course of 2-ish years. I have gotten some great deals thanks to so many of you who want to support the blog and not charging $50 per pack.

Saga analysis

There’s a spark of life with the saga analysis which will hopefully reignite the series soon. The LOTR Saga has been dorment since the Helm’s Deep article was finished over 2 years ago. But now, Morten has picked up the mantle and will be continuing the series with The Road to Isengard. We do not yet have a definite date for these articles, but know that they are being worked on behind the scenes.

The Hobbit Saga should also soon start again, with Dave from CardTalk having played the scenarios recently. Once the final 2 scenarios are finished, he will take on the brutal task of covering the quests in Nightmare mode.

Storage Hub

There was a major update to the Storage Hub this month, with my completion of the next version of my storage solutions. This update showcases my new solution for storing my cards in Arkhives instead of Flip ‘n Tray boxes and storing all Nightmare cards as well. Halfway through the month, I had to update the article again as I completed yet another major milestone for my collection. A fellow collector from the Netherlands reached out to me and gave me a good deal on some of the older playmats. This completed my collection of the event playmats, which is a crowning achievement for my collection. A full collection of these mats is very rare, as some of the mats are over 7 years old by now.

I hope more people will reach out for June and send me their storage solutions, as people might need some cheaper solutions than mine. If your storage is different from any of the other articles on the hub already, let me know. We can arrange to have your solution featured on the blog!

All my playmats at the moment. Includes all community and event playmats!

Player card / Encounter set analysis

Yesterday saw the release of the player card review of The Steward’s Fear, one of the best packs when it comes to player cards. I hope you have had the chance to read it already; otherwise, make sure to read it after finishing this article. The pack has probably had the most stars out of all packs reviewed so far. After this article, Silblade will continue with his encounter set analyses, diving into the Hunt for Gollum adventure pack.

Middle Earth Tour

The Tour continued this month with the Angmar Awakened cycle. While there are no safe places for the final two scenarios, some extra locations were thrown in for players to travel to during earlier quests. The Tour will continue to the Dream-chaser cycle, with new locations for each of those quests as well. We hope to release the next article next month but might need more time to complete that cycle.

Additional articles

There were no additional articles outside of the main series this month. We expect to release our overview on the keywords in this game at some point next month. Aside from that, I have thought of an additional article concept that I will look to finish this month. It was a pretty wacky idea, but I think I can make a full article out of it.

The Future

During May, I saw that the daily stats of the blog have been decreasing significantly. While I’m not sure if that is because of people dropping the game or playing less often, it was quite a significant drop. This might be a result of people getting to experience the outside world some more, as vaccinations are becoming more and more frequent. Luckily, the blog doesn’t depend on the daily views or anything, as I don’t earn anything directly from people visiting the site. But it’s nice to see large numbers get even bigger!

As for me, I am doing alright, but work is starting to pile up. I am working less often from home now and am spending longer days in my laboratory. Because of that, my articles have slowed down to just 1 or 2 per month, which I hope to maintain or even improve in the coming months. However, I do not have a lot of days off during summer, so don’t expect massive articles every 2 days like before. I do hope that the length and quality of the articles we do release make up for this, and the articles still help out people who are joining the game.

I am also working behind the scenes on two large cross-community projects at the moment, for which more details will be released next month. Be sure to keep an eye on social media platforms for the announcements. I’m very happy to be involved with both projects and hope that plenty of people can join the events to watch or listen in on the shenanigans that are planned out.

Loot update

I spent quite some time this month working on the notebook that is scheduled to be finished in September. I finished a section with easy links to major community resources, finished the introduction, and added some new items to the book, like an overview of action windows. I have also started work on the campaign tracker, but that is taking up a bit more time than I had initially thought. There are quite a few quests in the LOTR campaign, and different Boons and Burdens enter and leave play at different times. So I would like to spend some more time on this part of the book before going into the next phase of the loot production. I am also still waiting on the design for the collection sheet and want to do some small tweaks before prototyping. I will keep you all informed as the project continues.

~Aa’menealla nauva calen ar-malta~

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One thought on “Month in Review: May 2021

  1. I love this blog, and it still produces high quality content as always.

    I wouldn’t be concerned about the drop in traffic here at VotP from March – May. I see almost the exact same % traffic drop over those months in the /lotrlcg subreddit I moderate.

    I believe it is just a general trend of people getting out and enjoying Spring and is no reflection on the excellence of this site!

    Keep up the great work!

    Liked by 1 person

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