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Flashback Friday - War of the Ring - Love it or Hate It? Do you Still Play It?

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24 Aug 2018 20:15 #280336 by SaMoKo
Just mentioned in the game thread I want to pull this out again soon, so yup! I still play it.

It’s probably worse in most ways than Twilight Struggle. It’s clunkier, less balanced, and there are more fiddle rules and moving pieces. It’s like comparing Claustrophobia to Mutant Chronicles.

At the end of the day, blasting a mutant apart with my Buhaus dudes gives me the same feeling of fullness this game does in comparison to the more elegant newer games; the swingy battles, tide turning card flips, chrome, and fiddle bits allow for almost unlimited potential. In one game, Isengard and the Ents may be key, in another, the focus is on a previously unimportant side of the board. Twilight Struggle has this, but a shriveled and ghastly Gollum like comparison; interesting in its own right, but a pale shadow of the giant metal-as-fuck wizard who is the real master of the ring.

This game is a damn masterpiece of Trash which combines unwieldy unlimited potential with an actually sensible system.
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24 Aug 2018 21:02 #280339 by san il defanso
This was my first game when I started to take chances on larger more complex Ameritrash. I played several times, and I did enjoy it. But it was petty complicated for my Euro brain, and I was routinely boggled by its weirdly written rules. It eventually was moved on.

I played the revised version with a friend years later and really enjoyed it. I almost wish I still had it, but like many long two-player games, it would never get played.

I think what I really want in a Tolkien game is similar to Barnes, less focused on war and more on characters. That's not to say this isn't a good representation of the source material, but it's not a genre I like as much.

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24 Aug 2018 21:16 #280341 by KingPut

repoman wrote: "I never played it but I think it sucks."

Did somebody actually say that and not get laughed out of the room?

Listen you whiny bastards. This game is great. It was great. It is great. It will be great. Certainly the best Lord of the Rings game ever made.

Knizia? Gimme a damn break. Might as well say how Stratego really captures the themes of the Napoleonic Wars.

It's got a long play time? Oh lets jump up on a chair and lift our skirt hems as we shriek in terror. Ya know what has a long play time and is all the rage? Any one of a ton of crap in a box games rolling off the kickstarter treadmill. OMG...Gloomhaven is a freakin modern classic! People will still be talking about it next week!

Bah! I spiritually flip all your tables and storm out the door.


Thank Fraking god somebody has some gaming balls on this site. I was about ready to delete my account until I read Repoman’s post.
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24 Aug 2018 23:33 #280343 by Chaz
This is still probably my favorite board game. It's that big, fat, kinda beat up box that'll always be sitting on my shelf, and one day, my son is going to see it, ask "Dad, what's that?", and I'll bring it down and say "Son, let me show you something."

What I love about this thing is the way that the cards mean that your game might come out exactly like the book, or might be totally off the rails and hilarious. I had one game where Wormtongue came out very early, and suddenly the Freeps had to change their whole plan because Rohan needed special attention. I had an amazing game where I verbally goaded the shadow player to emptying out Isengard, while I sat there with a handful of Ent cards, who did exactly the thing they were supposed to do. Then I had the game where Aragorn beelined down to Minas Tirith, got crowned, and proceeded to spend the rest of the game sitting around the throne room drinking, telling everyone how the army had to stay RIGHT THERE because the orcs were coming ANY MINUTE, while the entire war happened up north, with Gimli and Pippin leading a heroic defense at the head of a dwarven army.

Yes, the areas around the major cities are too small to hold the armies that'll be there, and yes the first edition cards aren't big enough to hold all the words (I did upgrade to the tarot cards), but for all that, War of the Ring is a box full of amazing potential stories, and my worn, janky, crammed full of notes and player aids copy is also full of a bunch of memories, and you can pry it from my cold, dead hands.
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24 Aug 2018 23:34 #280344 by ChristopherMD
I'll still happily play this and it's not leaving my collection anytime soon.

I'm also a little shocked people are complaining about a 3 hour game. This is an epic game based on an epic story. It deserves and is worth that time.
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25 Aug 2018 06:47 #280348 by Gary Sax
Yeah, length isn't something that sticks out about this game as notable, to me.

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25 Aug 2018 09:32 #280351 by Black Barney
Same here, I despise long games and War of the Ring has never felt long to me , ever.

Return of the King feels long though
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25 Aug 2018 16:11 #280391 by southernman
First, Shellie why did you not mention you had no tickets. I was looked it up online when you mentioned you were going and saw you had to reserve tickets to see it and since I didn't know when you were going I didn't bother anymore - I could have booked tickets for everyone and come and met up ...then you would have been the second one in your family I met up with in Oxford because ......

I played KingPut in a game of WotR in the bar of his Oxford hotel half a dozen or so years ago in the first Intercontinental FatDome.

How's that for hooking up WotR, Oxford and the Put clan in one post ;-)


Anyway I had first edition when it came out and liked playing it but probably the crowded board, the not great rulebook, and small cards and possibly lack of interested opponents (oh, and some shit going on in my life) meant it didn't connect that well and I sold it on.
I then bought 2E when it came out after hearing about the improvements and getting a second wind for it again and have never regretted it. It doesn't get out that often as most of my gaming days there are more than two and when I do have two I have a good selection of games to rotate through, but when it is out it is appreciated - length is not an issue as the game usually gets so intense time goes un-noticed and the asymmetrical design of the game with a feeling of hopelessness for one and the stress of ocnquering Middle Earth quick enough is necessary and done well.
This is a game that will be one of the last I sell when the time comes to move on a bit from this hobby.
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27 Aug 2018 12:52 #280453 by Ken B.
I will love this game, probably forever. Even if I became a monk, my little tiny dwelling would have a copy of this game under the bed.

I have not played it in a few years now, mostly because the opportunity has not arisen.

But, I respect the game design and thematic elements so very much. And I will gladly play it again when that chance arises. Because it's that damned good.
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27 Aug 2018 13:02 #280456 by Black Barney
even before coming to this site, I remember Ken B talking about War of the Ring and Queen's Gambit all the time

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27 Aug 2018 13:06 #280457 by Ken B.

Black Barney wrote: even before coming to this site, I remember Ken B talking about War of the Ring and Queen's Gambit all the time



Yah man I found those games when I was still on Decktech back in the day. They're still in my collection and they ain't goin' NOWEHERE baby.

They feel like kissing cousins, to be fair, and are some of the best treatments of their respective IPs ever.
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27 Aug 2018 13:17 #280458 by Black Barney
Speaking of kissing cousins, neither you nor Booth posted to my 10k post milestone thread, which has brought me great shame and ennui

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27 Aug 2018 13:31 #280460 by Ken B.

Black Barney wrote: Speaking of kissing cousins, neither you nor Booth posted to my 10k post milestone thread, which has brought me great shame and ennui



Fixed.


To be fair I saw some gibberish about "BB10k" and I figured it was some Warhammer shit, so I stayed clear. Sorry about that broseph
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27 Aug 2018 16:20 #280463 by southernman

Black Barney wrote: even before coming to this site, I remember Ken B talking about War of the Ring and Queen's Gambit all the time


And even more coincidentally SW: The Queens Gambit was the other game I played with KingPut in Oxford for our Fatdome intercontinental clash.
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27 Aug 2018 16:21 #280464 by Josh Look
I still refuse to post in that thread.
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