Sailing is a keyword that represents that the players are currently traveling across the sea on their ships. At the beginning of each quest phase (before committing characters to the quest), if the main quest has the Sailing keyword, the first player must perform a Sailing test.
Brandon and Brian are playing a scenario and the main quest has the Sailing keyword. Their heading is not looking too good (), but a good Sailing test could get it back on"‘course ().
1. At the beginning of the quest phase, the first player, Brandon, must perform a Sailing test. First, he shifts his heading off"‘course by rotating the Heading card 90 degrees counter "‘clockwise. This sets their heading to .
2. He then commits Círdan the Shipwright and 2 Sailors of Lune to the Sailing test. Since he committed 3 characters to the Sailing test, he looks at the top 3 cards of the encounter deck and counts the number of symbols found on those cards.
3. Brandon spots no symbols on the first card, but one on each of the other two cards. He therefore shifts his heading two steps towards on"‘course by rotating the Heading card 90 degrees clockwise twice. This puts the fleet back on"‘course ()!
Sailing tests represent the players' ability to change their course or alter their sails and riggings in such a way as to adapt to the changing winds.
In order to perform a Sailing test, you must first shift your heading off-course. This represents the shifting of the winds, and the difficulty of navigating at sea. (If it is already at , it does not change.)
Then, the player performing the Sailing test exhausts any number of characters he controls, committing them to the Sailing test. After choosing which characters to commit to the Sailing test, that player looks at a number of cards from the top of the encounter deck equal to the total number of characters committed to the Sailing test. If the encounter deck does not contain enough cards to look at, shuffle the encounter discard pile back into the encounter deck first.
Some encounter cards have a symbol on the bottom left corner of their text box. This symbol represents a success when performing a Sailing test. For each symbol found on the looked at encounter cards, you may shift your heading on-course. If no symbols are found, your heading stays the same. Then, discard all of the looked at cards.
symbols have no effect other than representing success during a Sailing test.
Players have the opportunity to use Action effects before and after a Sailing test, but not during.
Boarding is a keyword that appears on many ship-enemies. When a ship-enemy with the Boarding keyword engages a player from the staging area, reveal the top X cards from the Corsair Deck and put the revealed enemies into play, engaged with that player. Note that the Boarding keyword does not resolve if the ship-enemy engages a player from another player's play area, or from the encounter deck or discard pile.
Tom and Kris are playing the scenario "Into Ithilien," and two copies of Southron Mercenaries are in play. Southron Mercenaries has the keyword archery X, where X is the number of players in the game. This gives a cumulative archery value of 4. At the beginning of the combat phase, the players decide to deal 2 damage to Kris' ally Gandalf, and 2 damage to Tom's hero Denethor.
While a card with the archery keyword is in play, players must deal damage to character cards in play equal to the specified archery value at the beginning of each combat phase. This damage can be dealt to characters under any player's control, and it can be divided among the players as they see fit. If there is disagreement as to where to assign archery damage, the first player makes the final decision. If multiple cards with the archery keyword are in play, the effects are cumulative. Remember that does not block archery damage.
There are two kinds of ship cards: Ship-Enemies and Ship-Objectives. Both ship-enemies and ship-objectives count as ship cards, but have different rules associated with them.
Ship-enemies function in the same way as enemies and are considered to be enemies for all purposes, with the following exceptions:
Ship-objectives function in the same way as objective-allies and are considered to be allies (and characters) for all purposes, with the following exceptions:
The Corsair Deck is a separate deck made up of only non-ship enemies, and represents the sailors, pirates and raiders players may encounter on Corsair ships in the encounter deck.
When ships are included in a scenario's encounter deck, that scenario's Setup will instruct the players to "prepare the Corsair Deck." This is done by removing all non-ship enemies from the encounter deck, placing them in a separate pile, and shuffling it. This pile is referred to as the Corsair Deck. Ship-enemies remain in the standard encounter deck.
The enemies in the Corsair Deck are only revealed through card abilities, such as the Boarding keyword (see below).
The Corsair Deck has its own discard pile. Whenever a non- ship enemy would be placed in the discard pile, place it in the Corsair discard pile instead. When the Corsair Deck runs out of cards, immediately shuffle the Corsair discard pile back into the Corsair Deck.
When ships are included in a scenario's encounter deck, that scenario's Setup will instruct the players to "prepare their fleet." To prepare their fleet, each player chooses and takes control of one of the four unique ship-objectives included in The Dream-chaser 's Fleet encounter set: the Dream-chaser, the Dawn Star, the Nárelenya, or the Silver Wing. One of the players must choose the Dream-chaser. In a game with only one player, that player takes control of the Dream-chaser and one other ship-objective of his or her choice. Each ship-objective that is not used is then removed from the game.
Finally, the player who controls the Dream-chaser attaches the Heading card to the Dream-chaser and sets it to .
The Heading card attached to the Dream-chaser represents the fleet's current ability to navigate their ships with the wind and through the many hazards that may appear at sea. A bad heading represents sailing poorly, into hazards such as enemies or foul weather.
The symbol shown on the Heading card is called "your current heading." All players share the same heading. Some cards will have additional or different effects depending on the current heading. The possible headings are described below:
: This is the only heading that is considered to be "on-course," and is the best possible setting. Your heading cannot shift any further on-course than this. You are traveling windward, with maximum maneuverability.
/: These headings are considered "off-course." You are struggling against the elements and are not navigating properly.
: This heading is considered "off-course," and is the worst possible setting. Your heading cannot shift any further off-course than this. You are traveling against the wind, and are completely at the mercy of the sea.
If you are instructed to shift your heading off-course, you must rotate the Heading card 90Â° counterclockwise so that your current Heading is one step closer to the worst setting (). If it is already at the worst setting (), it cannot shift off-course.
If you are instructed to shift your heading on-course, you must rotate the Heading card 90Â° clockwise so that your current Heading is one step closer to on-course (). If it is already at on-course (), it cannot shift on-course.
Note: When you are instructed to shift your heading on-course, it does not shift all the way to the on-course () setting; it only shifts one step closer to the on-course () setting.
To play normal mode, just follow the setup instructions on the quest card.
When you play normal mode (or easy mode of course) and if you're new to the game, you can also play the "Basic Game" defined in the core set rules:
Newer players or players who want a more basic experience can play and enjoy the game by not dealing shadow cards during the combat phase. This eliminates an element of surprise that could make the game too challenging for a beginner. Once players are comfortable with this experience, they can then add the shadow effects to make combat less predictable and more exciting.