The Hidden Way

  • Card Talk Season 3 Episode 58
    • Video episode
    • Audio episode
  • Cycle
    • Ered Mithren
  • Set
    • The Withered Heath 
  • Player Card Categories
    • Location Control
    • Encounter Control
    • Encounter Reveal Reduction

The location version of Wait No Longer.


The card refers to Stonewain Valley that Ghan-Buri-Ghan lead the Rohirrim through to get to Pelennor Fields.

Card Theme

The card lets the player(s) choose a location to go to bypasses any negative travel effects, or other potentially hazardous locations they might have had to go to first before. In true solo, it also ensures you won’t reveal an enemy card thereby avoiding any encounters for a round. It fits very well with source material with the Rohirrim avoiding orcs by going to a different location.

Card Synergies and Interactions

Direct Location Progress

There are several cards that can help explore the new active location brought out by The Hidden Way. Lorien Guide in the Core Set debuted the ability to put progress on the location. The first FAQ also clarified that Tactic Legolas hero and Blade of Gondolin could also place progress on the active location because it always acts as a buffer to the main quest. Cards like Snowbourn Scout, Asfaloth, and The Evening Star that place progress on any location will also work.

Haldan, Scouts, and Location Attachments

Haldan’s abilities all depend on there being an active location. The Hidden Way can help make them more consistent. Putting location attachments on them not only can help explore the location by getting him to quest without exhausting but Woodmen’s Path reduces the quest points to 1. Allies with the Scout trait often have abilities that can help clear the active location.

More Encounter Control

The Hidden Way often ends up in many encounter control decks because it reduces the number of encounter cards revealed. Instead of canceling an encounter card like most encounter control, it gives players the choice of a location helping shut down the worst the encounter deck has to offer. An encounter control strategy is usually limited to multiplayer since it leaves little room in a deck for cards to aid in questing and combat. The Hidden Way still works in solo because it can reduce the number of revealed cards to 0. Additionally it puts the location in the active slot and it won’t add its threat to the staging area. It combos well with A Watchful Peace because any more innocuous location pulled out can be recurred with it. Lore is also full of more encounter manipulation and cancelation. Lore Denethor, Risk Some Light, Out of the Wild, and Scout Ahead can either move or outright remove the worst cards from the encounter deck. Lore also has Leave No Trace and None Return like Out of the Wild that can add cards to the victory display but only after dealing with them at least once. This, however, opens the possibility of canceling another copy of that encounter card with The Door is Closed!

Quest Specific

Any quest with nasty travel effects can be teched against with The Hidden Way. The Hidden Way bypasses traveling and won’t trigger any of the Travel effects. Every cycle has some locations with travel effects that are better avoided. Haradrim, however, can counter The Hidden Way bypassing travel because it features many locations with Forced effects that trigger when a location becomes the active location.

In solo, a quest full of enemies, like The Seventh Level or The Fate of the Wilderland, it can be used to give the players a break from the onslaught.

Ring Rating

Card Talk uses the highly scientific yet arbitrary scale of 1 ring for the card to rule them all to 10 to be cast back into the fiery chasm from whence it came.

I rate The Hidden Way at 5 rings. It can be a widely applicable card to use considering it gives players options to what comes out of the encounter deck. When there isn’t an active location, it will lower the potential added staging area threat. It will bypass travel effects of which there are many that can ruin a game. It really shines in multiplayer where getting one less random card makes a bigger difference since reduces the chances of surge. Also in multiplayer the threat of location lock is higher and getting a location out and potentially cleared in a single turn can have a huge impact. I don’t rate it higher as many quests can be handled by a well balanced deck that quests and fights well. The options provided by encounter control effects while helpful aren’t always needed.

  • Dave – 4
  • Grant – TBR
  • Ted – 4
  • Matt – 5
  • Average – 4.33

External Links

Sample Decks

Infiltration Team for Escape from Dol Guldur by kattattack22

Questing and encounter control deck for 2 handed fellowship to crush Escape from Dol Guldur.

Main Deck

Hero (3)
Argalad (The Drowned Ruins)
Glorfindel (Foundations of Stone)
Pippin (The Black Riders)

Ally (17)
2x Daughter of the Nimrodel (Core Set)
3x Elrond (The Road Darkens)
3x Ithilien Lookout (The Dunland Trap)
3x Mirkwood Explorer (The Thing in the Depths)
3x Northern Tracker (Core Set)
3x Warden of Healing (The Long Dark)

Attachment (12)
3x Asfaloth (Foundations of Stone)
3x Light of Valinor (Foundations of Stone)
1x Magic Ring (The Crossings of Poros)
3x Song of Travel (The Hills of Emyn Muil)
2x Unexpected Courage (Core Set)

Event (21)
3x A Test of Will (Core Set)
3x Deep Knowledge (The Voice of Isengard)
3x Power of Orthanc (The Voice of Isengard)
3x Risk Some Light (Shadow and Flame)
3x Strider’s Path (The Hunt for Gollum)
3x The Evening Star (The Grey Havens)
3x The Hidden Way (The Withered Heath)

3 Heroes, 50 Cards
Cards up to The Withered Heath

Decklist built and published on RingsDB.