Wednesday, March 21, 2018

They're Rolling the Hobbit to Isengard (Lord of the Rings: Journey to Mordor)

1 ring to rule them all
1 ring to find them.
4 Hobbits to battle them all
and 5 dice to blind them.

BACKGROUND:  Journey to Mordor is a dice game published by Devir and Fantasy Flight Games for 2 to 4 players.  Players take control of one of the 4 Hobbits to destroy the One Ring

GAMEPLAY:  Each player takes a color, and rolls the 5 dice on their turn.  They must keep at least 1 die per roll, and cannot keep two of the same on the same roll.

RESULTS:  Once they have finished the player marks off a location on their map for each Ring showing.  However, if more Orcs are shown than Fellowship swords, the player does not advance.  Nazgul cause the player who own the color on the die (or the roller if the die was black or that color isn't being played) to advance on their map below their route, while Gandalf makes it so 2 Nazgul must advance on any empty location.  Finally, the White Tree ends the players roll, but a player may ignore any symbols other than Nazgul.

ADVANCED:  In the advanced mode, there are additional rules for all locations save Bag End or Mordor.  For example, in Helm's Deep, All Orc results are doubled.  In Gondor, Nazgul only affect other players.

WINNING:  Once a player has crossed off the last location on the Nazgul path in Mordor, hethey are eliminated.  The player to make it to Mordor on their path wins.

CONCLUSION:  I do not enjoy playing this game.  There is no real choice or strategy made here, and what little strategy is there is made simply by not taking bad things.  The theme fares little better, as the point of the Fellowship was to band together to help each other, and all 4 Hobbits are fighting each other in this game.  The one compliment I can give this game is that the maps and dice are nice looking.  This is the game that you play with younger relatives or children in order to teach them the concept of strategy and pattern recognition, but don't expect to actually enjoy playing it.

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