Unloaded Keywords are bold one-word labels included in the game text of many cards. They do not confer any special meaning in and of themselves, but merely further describe what the card is and represents. For instance, a card with the keyword Ranger (such as Boromir, Lord of Gondor, shown to the right) has no inherent advantage over another character. However, another card (such as Pathfinder) may have a cost or effect that can only be satisfied by a Ranger – in the case of Pathfinder, you cannot use it unless you can spot a Ranger on the table. Unloaded Keywords therefore are usually used to define sub-Cultures, such as Rangers and Knights within [Gondor], or Easterlings, Southrons, and Corsairs within [Raider]. Many specific strategies boost a particular Unloaded Keyword (Swordsman of the Northern Kingdom), or weaken it (Uruk Scout).
Almost all Character cards – that is to say, Companion, Ally, and Minion cards – come with at least one built-in Unloaded keyword: their Race. Boromir, shown to the right, has his Race listed just below his portrait: Man.
Most Companion cards in Movie block (with the exception of non-unique Companions and many of the less-important Unique ones) have a Signet that can for all intents and purposes be treated as an Unloaded Keyword. Boromir has the Aragorn signet, and it's just as if had "Aragorn-Friendly" printed on the card as a keyword.
In addition, all companions (but not allies or minions) that are not explicitly stated to be Ring-bound have the hidden Unbound keyword. See Ring-bound for more information.
See the pages for the keywords below for in-depth discussion as to an individual keyword's influence, or see Loaded Keywords for an explanation for all other bolded keywords.
|Race||Decipher||[Raceless] • Balrog • Creature • Dwarf • Elf • Ent • Half-troll • Hobbit • Maia • Man • Nazgûl • Orc • Spider • Tree • Troll • Uruk-hai • Wizard • Wraith|
|Player's Council||Crow • Eagle|
|Hobbit Draft Game||Bird • Dragon • Eagle • Giant • Goblin|
|Decipher||Battleground • Dwelling • Forest • Marsh • Mountain • Plains • River • Underground|
|General||Decipher||Besieger • Corsair • Easterling • Engine • Fellowship • Fortification • Knight • Machine • Pipeweed • Ranger • Ring-bound • Search • Southron • Spell • Stealth • Tale • Tentacle • Tracker • Twilight • [Unbound] • Valiant • Villager • Weather • Warg-rider|
|Hobbit Draft Game||Burglar • Cunning • Wise|