With all the new orc enhancers in Dark Minions, some of the orcs may not be viable attakcers yet.

Orc-ratiders # Hazard # Creature # 1 MP # 6/- # Keyable: Bl, Wi, Sl
Orcs. Four Strikes.

Orc-raiders, while very easily keayble, are often just free MPs for your opponents.

First off, this card has two good features. It is keyable to the three most common region types. The only way to avoid being attacked by them is to either not move or to move along certain areas of the coast. This means that they are both fast (won't hang around in your hand for long) and wil usually give you a chance to deal with your opponent's companies. The second advantage is that they have four strikes, so if they are sufficiently enhanced they can tap quite a number of characters.

However, unless you can enhance them, playing them is probably a bad move. Sure they can be easily played. But do you want to play them? Sure, they've got four strikes. But even a party made up of the likes of Bard Bowman (3/6) can have everybody take -3 to stay untapped and still have a better chance of beating the strike than being wounded. Thus, you are both giving your opponent MPs AND failing to tap his characters. You could have better used a River.

With enhancement they are a good option. With a Minions Stir (with Doors), three Scimitars of Steel, and Clouds Orc-raiders becomes 6 strikes at 13/-. Keying that to a company moving from Dol Amroth to Vale of Erech can be quite a surprise. It will at least tap a company.

But what else could you play in that situation? Wargs are keyable to the same region types. With Wake of War (and Doors) and Clouds, they become 4 strikes at 12/-. Almost as good as the Orc-raiders with less enhancement. Or with an appropriate environment you can bring in a Hobgoblins with better prowess. Or with Angmar Arises/Reaching Shadow you can hit almost any company in the north or east with a shadow/dark orc. Or you might do better to diversify your strategy. Let Slayers take care of Border-lands, Cave-drakes Wilderness and some better orcs can take Shadow-lands.

Maybe the best (and only) time to use this card is when your opponent recieving an MP and waiting a turn is better than him doing in the site phase now what he could do the next turn. And even then you mght need some enhancement.

Ratings for Orc-raiders:
Isildur: 4.0
Frodo: 6.5
Samwise: 6.0
Cirdan: 2.0
Beorn: 6.9
Fingolfin: 4.0
Strider: 5.0
Legolas: 4.0
Average: 4.8

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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.