The Moria Culture | openCards

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Moria iconThe Moria Culture

    This Strategy-Note article was written by Steve Horton and was published first on "Lord of the Rings Online (".

    The Moria culture dominated the tournament scene from the very first Fellowship of the Ring set, and though all but one or two Moria cards have rotated out of Standard format, this powerful culture of Orcs and Trolls (and the occasional Balrog) remain potent in both Fellowship Block play and Expanded format.

    The best of the best Moria decks revolve around four copies of Goblin Armory. This powerful condition has two awesome functions built into a single card. The first adds a twilight whenever a Moria weapon is played. Combined with Goblin Scimitar and Goblin Scavengers, this creates a potent twilight and card-drawing engine. The second part of Goblin Armory lets a player discard it to prevent a wound on a Moria Orc. This function is used at a critical moment when there are multiple Orcs on the Ring-bearer and the opponent has direct damage, such as Power According to His Stature.

    Other than Goblin Armory, the best Moria decks include many copies of the cheapest Moria Orcs. There's a variant that uses Underdeeps of Moria and Goblin Sneak: use the Sneak to put as many minions on the bottom of the deck as possible, then take them into hand later with the Underdeeps to play ten or more minions at the perfect time.

    Fellowship Block decks should include one copy of a Balrog of choice, since the only site 5, The Bridge of Khazad-dûm, plays the Balrog from hand or draw deck for -6 twilight. Either Fellowship-block Balrog is a good choice, but a Moria swarm deck prefers The Balrog, Flame of Udûn.

    As an alternative to swarm, there's are two other Moria variants that are also potent. The first uses Cave Troll of Moria, Scourge of the Black Pit and Cave Troll's Hammer for an effective and punishing minion. The other is strictly Expanded format and combines Moria swarm with Raider swarm and Under Foot to repeatedly reconcile the hand for a massive collection of minions.

    Don't forget about the lone Moria minion in Reflections. Host of Moria, Legion of the Underdeeps is crucial, as it's a big minion that plays any Moria card from the discard pile. Extremely useful for getting an additional minion or getting back that Goblin Armory

    Regardless of the choice of Moria swarm, strategy is simple. Play the Armories and Underdeeps and Goblin Sneak a few minions to the bottom of the deck until the opponent moves to site 4, then hit them with as many minions as possible. Do the same at site 5, and the game should be over.