Grond, Hammer of the Underworld (8R103)

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Grond, Hammer of the Underworld (8R103) is a Culture Sauron.svg Sauron Possession from the Siege of Gondor set.

Collection Info
Title Grond
Subtitle Hammer of the Underworld
Unique Yes
Collectible Yes
Set 8 - Siege of Gondor
Rarity R - Rare
Card Number 103
Language EN - English
Revision 0
Gameplay Info
Playable Yes
Culture Culture Sauron.svg Sauron
Side Shadow
Card Type Possession
Item Class Support Area
Twilight Cost 3
Game Text Engine. Shadow: Play a Culture Sauron.svg minion to add a Culture Sauron.svg token here.

Regroup: Remove X Culture Sauron.svg tokens here to discard a Free Peoples card (except a companion) with a twilight cost of X. Discard a Culture Sauron.svg minion or this possession.

Lore “...and the black serpent foundered.”
DE - German

Game Text Belagerungswaffe.

Schatten: Spielen einen Culture Sauron.svg Diener, um eine Culture Sauron.svg Marke auf diese Karte zu legen.

Sammeln: Entferne X Culture Sauron.svg Marken von dieser Karte, um eine Karte der Freien Völker (außer einen Gefährten) mit X Zwielichtkosten abzulegen. Lege einen Culture Sauron.svg Diener oder diese Ausrüstung ab.

FR - French
IT - Italian

Technical Info
Wiki Base Card ID LOTR-EN08S103.0
GEMP ID 8_103
LOTRO Hex ID 67 26 A1 07
LOTRO Image ID 08_103


Grond, Hammer of the Underworld is an all-purpose removal skeleton key, crushing possessions, conditions, allies, and even artifacts and followers with ease. (It's one of very few cards that interacts with Free Peoples artifacts or followers at all.) It's very straightforward: use it to play Culture Sauron.svg Sauron minions to stack culture tokens on it, ideally keep those minions alive until your chance to take an action in the Regroup Phase, then hammer any problematic card. Because Grond is a support area possession, there's only a few Free Peoples cards that can even do anything about it. Unlike the other Engines which mostly only appear in Besieger decks, Grond is a staple of almost all Culture Sauron.svg Sauron decks in Movie Block and later.

All you need to play Grond is enough Culture Sauron.svg Sauron minions in your deck. He works in a variety of decks and works well against every Free Peoples deck that doesn't discard him first. Unlike most Engines, there's no need to play him with Besiegers, although he does make (the very annoying) Gorgoroth Assassin (8R95) more attractive even in a deck not chiefly focused on Besiegers.

Grond is chiefly played in Movie Block, since later blocks reshuffle the Shadow cultures. There are relatively few cards in that format that can discard Grond, and all of them are popular specifically to deal with it (as well as some similar cards, like Boats). Blood Runs Chill (8R3) is a powerful tool to clear the Shadow player's entire board. Stand Against Darkness (1U63) can toss it, and Telepathy and Elvents often run that card for that reason. Galadriel, Lady Redeemed (10R11) is herself a skeleton key for Shadow support cards, and can appear in any deck with enough Culture Elven.svg Elven events. Roll of Thunder (4U99) is a staple in any deck with Gandalf, and can be tutored with Saved From the Fire (8R20) and recurred with Barliman Butterbur, Prancing Pony Proprietor (1U70) . Arrow-slits (5U80) is one of the least popular of these due to its narrow applicability. Derufin (7R87) shows up in many Culture Gondor.svg Gondor decks in Movie Block, in large part to protect artifact weapons from Grond.

Grond has a bit of anti-synergy with other cards that require you to play Culture Sauron.svg Sauron minions as part of an ability action. You can't get a token for playing a minion at a discounted price with Ithil Stone (9R+47) , or for using Their Marching Companies (8U107) to play a Besieger stacked on a site you control. You can't double-dip both Grond and Great Siege-towers (7U281) . It also has anti-synergy with other cards that want to discard or stack Culture Sauron.svg Sauron minions, like Troop Tower (7R316) , Army of Udûn (7U264) , or Troll of Gorgoroth, Abomination of Sauron (8R108) . Plus, you need to remember to use Grond to play your minions, rather than playing them on their own. These are relatively minor considerations, but they're important to keep in mind.

While Grond can't affect companions directly, it can affect them indirectly by discarding the cards they're bearing. If an exhausted companion is bearing a card that increases their vitality, Grond can discard that card, causing the companion to drop to zero vitality and die. Keep an eye out for opportunities to hammer popular vitality boosters like The Tale of Gil-galad (1R66) , Aiglos (9R+12) , Gandalf's Staff (2R22) (and its many variations), The Saga of Elendil (1R114) , Andúril, Flame of the West (7R79) , Narsil, Blade of the Faithful (9R+34) , Escape (4R300) , and the Culture Elven.svg Elven rings. Likewise, discarding resistance boosters like Phial of Galadriel (3U24) , Scroll of Isildur (9R36) , or a Damage +X hand weapon or ring on Gimli, Bearer of Grudges (9R+4) can sometimes get a sneaky win.

Because Grond discards cards rather than killing them, any unique ally discarded by him can simply be replayed. Be careful that you're not helping your opponent out by discarding an exhausted ally that can't easily be healed. This is mainly a concern with Barliman Butterbur, Prancing Pony Proprietor (1U70) , who can simply be replayed with A Wizard Is Never Late (1R87) .

Strengths and Weaknesses[edit]

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Alternate Versions[edit]

Portrait Name Game Text
Grond, Forged With Black Steel (18R82) To play, spot an Culture Orc.svg minion.

Each time the fellowship moves in the regroup phase, you may discard this possession to search the Free Peoples player's draw deck and remove up to 2 Free Peoples cards from the game.​