Fantasy Flight Games has announced today they will be releasing an expansion pack to their popular The Lord of the Rings: The Card Game. The Hobbit: Over Hill and Under Hill card game, which will be released this autumn, offers players the chance to re-create the first half of Bilbo’s epic adventure.
The expansion adds five new heroes (including Thorin Oakenshield) introduces new quests (including a certain deadly riddling game), and promises three new scenarios drawn straight from the first half of The Hobbit. They also introduce an entirely new type of card: the Treasure card. These treasures can be incredibly useful if won, or incredibly dangerous if one falls prey to the scenario’s enemies. According to Fantasy Flight Games, they also somehow aid in continuity with the larger story – intriguing!
Players of this new expansion will be encouraged to remember that, just like in the books, Bilbo is central to their quest – if he dies, the game is lost. The game also seeks to emulate Bilbo’s “pluck and wit” by giving him a new sphere of influence, called the Baggins sphere, which is put into play by the use of sphere tokens. However, because Bilbo cannot actually gain resources from card effects, the players must decide when the best time is to use Bilbo’s wits to get themselves out of trouble.
A second expansion, which will conclude the adventures of The Hobbit, will shortly follow this, possibly during the last quarter of 2012. If you are new to gaming and would like to try The Hobbit: Over Hill and Under Hill, remember that it is an expansion and you will need a copy of Lord of the Rings: The Card Game to play. I, for one, think this sounds like a lovely way to spend an evening, perhaps while tuning into Middle-earth Network Radio for some ambiance!