Date Posted: 26-09-2019

The One Ring: Combat


Jacob Rodgers is back with another great post on combat for our upcoming The One Ring The Lord of the Rings Roleplaying Game! We also have some new art to share with you! Let us know what you think over on our Facebook and Twitter pages.

It’s #TORsday again, and it’s time for a fight! While heroes in The One Ring The Lord of the Rings Roleplaying Game rarely seek out combat, they are forced to fight against the servants of the Enemy from time to time. Combat is an important, but infrequent, part of the game.

Like the original edition of The One Ring,most combats happen in the imagination of the players, and the heroes and enemies are not restrained by a grid or a set movement allowance. Instead, we care about the character’s approach to the fight. During your turn, you’re free to describe your hero’s actions and movements as they manoeuvre and engage with the enemy. 

Are you being aggressive and charging into the scrum, regardless of danger? Then you are being Forward — you will be rewarded for your boldness, but you will also find that the enemy has an easier time hitting you! Perhaps instead you will be careful, protecting yourself and others and waiting for the right time to strike. You’re in Defensive stance. Or maybe you will engage the enemy with a balanced approach, bringing the fight to them without unduly exposing yourself to harm. This is the Open stance. Those heroes who stay back, covered by their friends, so that they can shoot at the adversaries are in Rearward stance.

During combat, you’ll often be spending bonus Success Dice. You earn bonus dice by your Company’s preparation for the battle and you earn additional dice when you take either the Forward or Open stance. You can narrate the use of bonus dice as clever use of the terrain, a bold stratagem by yourself or your companions, or just simply superior skill at arms. Extra dice mean that not only are you more likely to score a hit, but you’re also more likely to earn superior successes in the form of the Tengwar runes that appear on the ‘6’ face of the Success dice.

Each Tengwar rune can be ‘spent’ in order to perform Special Damage. For example, your weapon might bite deeper, doing additional damage. Or you might be able to wrench an opponent’s weapon out of their hands, disarming them. Or break their armour or shield. Or land such a precise blow that the opponent must make a Protection test to avoid becoming Wounded (Wounded heroes have a harder time recovering Endurance, and many adversaries are slain outright when Wounded). The Special Damage options you have are unique to your weapon choice, allowing each hero the ability to contribute to the fight in different ways.

Not every moment of combat needs to be about swinging your weapon at the nearest opponent. Heroes can also engage in Combat Tasks, to intimidate the enemy, earn additional bonus dice for their companions, protect another hero from attack or improve their aim. We also include full rules for mounted combat in Second Edition, allowing you to charge your enemies in suitable conditions. 

You can now pre-order The Collector’s Edition of The One Ring The Lord of the Rings Roleplaying Game and the standard edition. We are still hard at work at the final steps of finishing the game and double-checking our work. They’ll be even more news soon.

Hope everyone has a fantastic TORsday,


Art by Michele Giorgi and Martin Sobr.

The One Ring, Middle-earth, The Hobbit, The Lord of the Rings, and the characters, items, events and places therein are trademarks or registered trademarks of The Saul Zaentz Company d/b/a Middle-earth Enterprises and are used under license by Sophisticated Games Ltd and their respective licensees. All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system, or transmitted, in any form or by any means, electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording or otherwise, without the prior permission of the publishers.