Deck #10 – Secret Leadership

Another quick Folco deck test.

This is a mono-leadership secrecy Folco deck! Not something I would have thought of but Sam and Denethor are certainly good candidates for starting heroes.

Secret Leadership was created and uploaded to Ringsdb by user Denison.

The deck includes a couple cards I’ve never played at all so I thought I would include it deck in my Falco tour. I will continue testing against Passage Through Mirkwood and Ruins of Belegost.

Secret Leadership

Test 1 – Passage Through Mirkwood

While I doubt this deck will peak at the same level of power as the last two Folco decks I’ve tested, it can ramp up fast. With the deck starting at 21 threat, you have the option to either immediately discard Folco to get into Secrecy mode if you have several secrecy cards in hand, or wait a few turns and use Folco’s willpower and resources to get a solid start. I quested with Folco Boffin on turn 1, then discarded him after the quest phase so I could play Timely Aid hoping for a strong ally to help Sam damage the Forest Spider on turn 1.

turn 1 secret fellowship - vanish from sight

Turn two I was able to play two Resourcefuls and start drawing cards with the Rod of the Steward and from there it was a smooth acceleration. I sprinted through Mirkwood completing the game in 4 turns and killing off a couple enemies along the way. I didn’t have to face the Spawn.

With no way to reduce threat after Folco leaves, this deck won’t be ideal for longer games but it can rush through some quests with a fairly fast production of willpower. If you draw into Secrecy cards in the later game, Vanish from Sight allows you to get those cards played at a discount if you only have two heroes.

This deck includes Taking Initiative which I confess I’ve never used! It appears to be useful on the first turn or two as 23 cards in the deck cost 4 or 5. It’s pretty much a dead card after turn 3 or so.

This deck features the brand new Knight of Dale card and while its unlikely that you will every get to use his Valour Action, he was certainly worth it with the abundance of resources in this deck. I usually just quested with him and always had a resource there to ready him if I needed to defend an unexpected enemy.

The deck pasted the easy test, now for Ruins of Belegost.

Test 2 – Ruins of Belegost

The encounter deck wasn’t kind and I got locked up with too much threat in the staging area on turn 4. I had a decent start and was optimistic, but I wasn’t able to dig myself out of the tight spot I got myself into. I played Gandalf to get that boost of willpower, but I still didn’t clear the active location. At that point, the dragon would be coming down and gobbling up allies one at a time while I struggled to keep up with willpower. I called it quits here.


OCTGN is currently using T Aragorn for Knight of Dale…

Final Analysis

This deck is clever and uses a couple cards that rarely get out of the binder. It has a good shot at getting through quests on the easier side of things but like many secrecy decks, I think it will start to struggle after it gets above 20 with no way to get back down. A brave deck to go for Secrecy in mono-leadership!

As a side note, every Folco deck I’ve tried so far includes ally Faramir. He certainly shows his quality in any deck that aims to field a lot of allies.

If I was to tweak the deck, I might add a couple copies of Core Gandalf to help with either card draw or threat reduction, the two challenges I see facing this deck.

Secret Leadership offers fresh and off-beat gameplay, but might not get you through the hardest quests. Give it a play if it sounds fun to you!

2 thoughts on “Deck #10 – Secret Leadership

  1. Thanks for playtesting this deck! Subbing in Core Gandalf for someone like the Ranger makes good sense. I’ve had my eye on this duo for awhile, so exited to make a viable deck with Folco. Taking Initiative is like the Dwarven mining cards, a lot of fun when it works! It especially helps in quests with an enemy in play on setup.


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