The Glorfindel hero you want to play.
Glorfindel we meet in the Lord of the Rings trilogy after Frodo is stabbed by the Morgul blade. He finds Strider and the Hobbits on their way to Rivendell. He takes Frodo from them and carries him swiftly to Rivendell. When confronted by the ringwraiths at the ford, he reveals his spiritual presence to drive the wraiths into the river. Then they are swept away in the ensuing flood. Those unfamiliar with books will note this part is filled by Arwen in the Peter Jackson film adaption.
Glorfindel, however, has a much more extensive story than his cameo in Lord of the Rings. In the First Age, he is one of the captains of Gondolin, the hidden elf city. He is most well known for slaying a Blarog in single combat covering the elves’ flight from the city after it fell. After the fatal blow, the Balrog began to fall into an abyss and dragged Glorfindel down with him. Glorfindel died, but the Valar brought him back from the Halls of Waiting.
He lived in Valinor after his resurrection until coming back to Middle Earth in the Second Age. Glorfindel most likely returned to Middle Earth with the Blue Wizards. He was sent to aid King Gil-galad and Elrond in fighting Sauron. Not much is known of his deeds during the end of the second age and early third age. He did fight Sauron’s forces in Eriador. There, most notably, he gave the prophecy that the Witch-King would not fall by the hand of a man.
Glorfindel is obviously a powerful Nolder as a First Age Elf that took down a Balrog single handedly. His strong stat line is well justified there. The low threat then is a reflection of his involvement in the War of the Ring. Hero threat is explained as the attention the hero draws from Sauron. Powerful leaders like Elrond or Gandalf have high threat because they’re high profile and powerful threats to Sauron. Hobbits have low threat because they generally below his notice. Glorfindel only returning shortly after the forging of The One Ring and believed to not openly display his unseen presence much if at all, likely was not well known. Later as previously mentioned he helped Frodo get to Rivendell, but was rejected from The Fellowship as his power would draw too much attention. This brings us to his Forced effect. Glorfindel’s power is hidden because it stems from his strong presence in the unseen world. He could reveal and unleash it as he did with the Nazghul. Doing so more often would eventually draw Sauron’s attention represented by the Forced effect raising a player’s threat.
Card Synergies and Interactions
Does Not Exhaust to Quest
The drawback to Glorfindel’s low threat cost is the Forced effect on his card. Every time he exhausts to quest, the player has to raise their threat by 1. The work around to this is either not to quest or use Light of Valinor that came in the same pack to quest without exhausting. Strider can also provide the a way around exhausting to quest, but the player can only control 2 or less heroes. If using the Grey Wanderer contract, either one of these could be put into play right at the start of the game.
Glorfindel’s low threat cost is great to enable Secrecy decks. Prior to Smeagol and Messenger of the King, his 5 threat cost was the lowest threat (tied with Mirlonde in Mono-Lore). On top of that, he had 3’s in two stats. Most low threat heroes in the first few cycles had 2’s with Sam Gamgee as the notable exception. Secrecy cards can provide tremendous value in a game. Resourceful and Timely Aid each only one cost can provide tremendous resource acceleration. Out of the Wild and Risk Some Light can control the encounter deck. Allies with Secrecy like Celduin Traveler, Ithilien Lookout, Dunedain Wander, and Rivendell Scout are great values for their Secrecy cost with each having at least a 2 stat.
Asfaloth, the location control card that because it could put 2 progress on any location resulted in locations getting many more quest points. It is easy to forget that it normally only places 1 progress when used with any other Noldor or Silvan hero because it almost always played with Glorfindel. The 2 progress per round is huge in clearing locations and avoiding location lock. In early cycles it will clear many locations in a single turn. Later cycles it might take a few turns but still it will eventually clear many locations and avoid nasty travel effects.
Glorfindel is often going to attack to utilize his robust attack stat. Attacking additionally avoids triggering his Forced effect. His attack easily can be better considering his traits qualify him for some of the best attack boosting attachments. Furthermore, his low threat works well with Dagger Westernesse extra bonus attack when players engage enemies with greater engagement cost higher than their threat.
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 Spirit Glorfindel hero at 1 ring. His very low threat, great stats, Spirit access, Asfaloth, and easy way to avoid his drawback make him fit into numerous decks. The 5 threat cost gives players lots of room to include high threat cost heroes. If they use lower threat cost heroes as well, it can be easy to avoid many engagements and avoid being overwhelmed early in the game. Not to mention enabling using the Secrecy discount when kept under 20 threat. While other heroes have low threat cost, none have double 3’s and the bevy of hit points that Glorfindel does. Then Light of Valinor in addition to negating his drawback, lets him use both stats every round. It is incredibly efficient. If he wasn’t powerful enough, he makes one of the best location control cards better. It can’t be understated how that 2 progress from Asfaloth changed location design in the game because it was so powerful with Glorfindel.
The real downside to Glorfindel is that he can become a crutch. When making a hero line up, he can help round out many of them. Need more willpower to start off with a lot of threat in the staging area or need to progress quickly, Spirit Glorfindel can help the questing hero do it. Need more attack power to deal with an big enemy early, Spirit Glorfindel can help with a more dedicated attacking hero. Facing a lot of archery, direct damage, or undefended attacks, His big pool of hit points can help. Need to keep starting threat low, to avoid engagements, Spirit Glorfindel can help. He just brings a lot to the table.
- Dave – 2
- Grant – 1.5
- Ted – TBR
- Matt – 1
Gandalf’s Noble Hunters by kattattack22
A Three Hunters deck featuring Spirit Glorfindel.
1x Forth, The Three Hunters! (The City of Ulfast)
3x Ancestral Armor (Roam Across Rhovanion)
3x Armored Destrier (Temple of the Deceived)
1x Celebrían’s Stone (Core Set)
3x Gandalf’s Staff (The Road Darkens)
3x Golden Belt (Challenge of the Wainriders)
2x Gondorian Shield (The Steward’s Fear)
2x Heir of Mardil (Celebrimbor’s Secret)
3x Light of Valinor (Foundations of Stone)
2x Livery of the Tower (The Flame of the West)
2x Shadowfax (The Treason of Saruman)
3x Shining Shield (The Fortress of Nurn)
3x Silver Circlet (Wrath and Ruin)
2x Staff of Lebethron (The Land of Shadow)
3x Unexpected Courage (Core Set)
3x Valiant Sword (Under the Ash Mountains)
3x Wizard Pipe (The Road Darkens)
3 Heroes, 50 Cards
Cards up to The Fortress of Nurn
Decklist built and published on RingsDB.
Victory-a Secret by stokesbook
A Secrecy enabled victory display encounter control deck.
2x A Burning Brand (Conflict at the Carrock)
2x Asfaloth (Foundations of Stone)
1x Cloak of Lórien (Celebrimbor’s Secret)
2x Lembas (Trouble in Tharbad)
3x Light of Valinor (Foundations of Stone)
3x Resourceful (The Watcher in the Water)
3x A Test of Will (Core Set)
3x Daeron’s Runes (Foundations of Stone)
3x Elrond’s Counsel (The Watcher in the Water)
2x Fair and Perilous (Across the Ettenmoors)
3x Keen as Lances (Escape from Mount Gram)
3x Leave No Trace (Escape from Mount Gram)
3x Mithrandir’s Advice (The Steward’s Fear)
3x None Return (Across the Ettenmoors)
3x Out of the Wild (Road to Rivendell)
3x The Door is Closed! (The Treachery of Rhudaur)
Player Side Quest (1)
1x Scout Ahead (The Wastes of Eriador)
3 Heroes, 51 Cards
Cards up to The Treachery of Rhudaur
Decklist built and published on RingsDB.