Glorfindel was tall and straight; his hair was of shining gold, his face fair and young and fearless and full of joy; his eyes were bright and keen, and his voice like music; on his brow sat wisdom, and in his hand was strength.
–J.R.R. Tolkien, The Fellowship of the Ring

Glorfindel the Elf-lord is one of the greatest warriors from the Third Age of Middle-earth. He sent the Witch-king of Angmar to flight when he challenged him during the great battle on the plains between Nenuial and the North Downs. When Elrond learned that the Ringwraiths rode in search of the Ring, Glorfindel was one of the few he sent to seek the Ringbearer and bring him safely to Rivendell. Few could ride openly against the Nine, but Glorfindel numbered among them.

Since The Lord of the Rings: The Card Game Core Set first gave players the opportunity to send Glorfindel ( Core Set , 11) riding into danger on perilous quests, many have called for a version of this Elf-lord that emphasized his bolder and more heroic aspects. Instead, the side of Glorfindel we find in the Core Set is the healer, the counselor, and the sage warrior with experience from many battles.

The Core Set Glorfindel bolsters your fellowship with the wisdom and healing of the Elves. As long as Glorfindel has resources to spend, you don’t have to draw into cards to heal your characters; the sage Elf-lord can simply mitigate the severity of their wounds, much as he recognized the severity of Frodo’s wound, when he met Aragorn and the Hobbits west of the Ford of Bruinen. We can imagine the Core Set Glorfindel as he appeared in Rivendell, seated in a place of honor at Elrond’s left hand, and valued for his wise counsel.

The Hand of Strength

Where the Core Set Glorfindel is the sage, Foundations of Stone offers us a new version of Glorfindel ( Foundations of Stone , 101). This is a Glorfindel that represents the Elf-lord ready to ride, undaunted by the shadow that gathers against him. This is the Glorfindel who once dwelt in the Blessed Realm of Valinor. This is the Glorfindel whom Frodo saw shine with a bright light, an Elf-lord who does not fear the Ringwraiths, and who has, as Tolkien wrote in The Fellowship of the Ring , great power “ against both the Seen and the Unseen .” This is a Glorfindel made to take action.

At a mere five starting threat and three Willpower, this new Glorfindel can help you ride past early enemies as they build in the staging area, though if you exhaust him to quest each turn, your threat will mount quickly. On the other hand, his three Attack Strength makes him the strongest attacker currently in the Spirit sphere, so perhaps you won’t want to quest with him after all, but will save him to strike down your foes. Really, when the problem is deciding how best to use a character who’s so good at multiple tasks, it’s not a horrible problem, especially not when you can play a copy Unexpected Courage ( Core Set , 57) or Light of Valinor ( Foundations of Stone , 107) to task Glorfindel with both questing and attacking.

Of course, it’s his versatility that makes this new Glorfindel so good, and his versatility and low starting threat make him an excellent option in a Secrecy deck. When you pair Glorfindel with the new Aragorn ( The Watcher in the Water , 53), you can rein in your threat at least once in the game, affording you time to build up your resources with Resourceful ( The Watcher in the Water , 62) and to build a hand of cards like Elrond’s Counsel ( The Watcher in the Water , 59) and Arwen Undómiel ( The Watcher in the Water , 58) to manage your later questing and threat reduction.

To the Deepest Darkness

The Elves are not fond of the dark ways beneath the mountains, not like the Dwarves, but that does not mean they fear them. When necessity dictates, he scours the mines of Moria for the source of the increased Orc activity in the Misty Mountains, Glorfindel does not quaver, nor shake. He heads boldly forward and downward, delving quickly to the roots of the mountains, down to Moria’s Foundations of Stone .

Look for Glorfindel, Light of Valinor, and the other great cards from Foundations of Stone to arrive at a retailer near you later next week!

The Lord of the Rings: The Card Game is a cooperative card game that puts 1-2 players (or up to four with an additional Core Set) in control of the most powerful characters and artifacts of Middle-earth. Players will select heroes, gather allies, acquire artifacts, and coordinate their efforts to face Middle-earth’s most dangerous fiends. The Living Card Game format allows players to customize their gaming experience with monthly Adventure Pack expansions to the core game.

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