The Sulfur-deeps

Anyone who has been to Yellowstone National Park can attest that sulfur stinks and lots of sulfur stinks a lot. I might have enjoyed walking amongst geysers more if I had walked away with a Dragon-helm and Aiglos.

The Sulfur-deeps - Site - Under-deeps - Dark-hold - Opponent/You Draw 4/1
Adjacent Sites: Dol Guldur (0), The Under-courts (5), The Pukel-deeps (9), The Under-gates (5), The Under-galleries (8)
Playable: Items (minor, major, greater)
Automatic-attacks (2): (1st) Trolls - 2 strikes with 9 prowess (2nd) Opponent may play as an automatic-attack one non-unique hazard creature from his hand normally keyed to Shadow-holds
Special: If Khamul the Easterling or Adunaphel is in play as a permanent-event, one must be used as an additional automatic-attack (attacker's choice, discard after use-ignore result of defeat).

Well, The Sulfur-deeps is actually a fairly good Under-deeps site. It's got a fairly (or at least comparatively) easy auto-attack, and it's got a pretty wide swath of items playable there.

First, it is an Under-deeps site, so it has some inherent abilities and disabilities. First, it doesn't have a site path (though you may have to face some nasties on your way to Dol Guldur to get down here) except for the site type, which is still nasty enough to allow Nazgul et al. to attack. Second, you can play two greater or a greater and a major or two majors, etc. here. That's pretty nice, and is the basis of Thorough Search decks, and these sites can do that without using a slot for Thorough search (or making sure you have an untapped scout), but the nice parts end about there. Any deck preparing to go down here needs more than just three cards (Thorough Search) to prepare. Other disadvantages include two nasty auto-attacks, the danger of nasties like Durin's Bane, and difficult movement.

What is specific about The Sulfur-deeps? Well, it's below Dol Guldur, one of the least frequently visited sites on the map (up there with Barad-dur). It's a Dark-hold, so you can expect some dangerous creatures (Nazgul and souped up Orcs/Trolls/Undead come to mind...), although if you can brave them while venturing through Southern Mirkwood and while arriving at Dol Guldur, you can probably find a way to deal with them down below (where I believe Thrain was found by Gandalf). This can be nice if your opponent is playing a largely wilderness or border/free-based attack, but those aren't all that popular at the moment ;-) However, once you arrive through all the dangers, you have to face 2 troll strikes at 9 prowess (note: DO NOT play an orc/troll hazard strategy with an Under-deeps strategy it DOES NOT work). That's bigger than most of the attacks in the game, but it's about on par with other greater item sites. Then you've got to deal with a shadow-holds creature of your opponent's choice, which can be a dangerous proposition if your opponent likes Undead/Orcs/Trolls, but can be a piece of cake if he's using Assassins, Slayers, Cave-drakes, and the like. However, you may be better off safe than sorry (Mallorn or Aiglos?). Note that you may be looking at a Khamul or Andunaphel coming at you, which could be yours, so watch out and plan carefully!

Other stuff particular to The Sulfur-deeps is the 4/1 draw (typical of under- deeps) which is the worst ratio of any site in the game. It's also kind of centrally located, so you can get to a fair number of sites with relative ease. It doesn't have any specific resources for it (although you might drop down if you play Pass the Doors of Dol Guldur), but it can be useful for playing (along with your normal plethora of items) a card like Vein of Arda or To the Uttermost Foundations.

So The Sulfur-deeps is an interesting site. It should be in every site deck (as should all sites), but you should carefully plan your deck if you want to use it (although it can be a good site for taking prisoners to). You can get two greater items (as well as other cool Under-deeps cards), but you may come up with more characters and MPs in the same amount of time by getting greater and major items above ground.

Ratings for The Sulfur-deeps:
Isildur: 8.5
Farmer Maggot: 9.0
Gandalf: 7.5
Frodo: 7.0
Strider: 6.5
Legolas: 5.0
Eonwe: 7.0
Samwise: 6.9
Wormtongue: 5.5
Average: 7.0

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Card names and text copyright 1996 by Iron Crown Enterprises, all rights reserved. This document copyright 1996 by Trevor Stone. Permission given to duplicate so long as no profit is made and the copyright notice is kept in tact, blah, blah, blah.