Middle-earth Collectible Card Game
Middle-earth Collectible Card Game (MECCG) is a collectible card game released by Iron Crown Enterprises in late 1995. It is the first CCG based on J.R.R. Tolkien's Middle-earth, with added content from ICE's Middle-earth Role Playing game.
In its basic form, it is a game for two to five players, each choosing one of the five wizards to represent themselves. A turn in the game consists of one player's wandering around Middle-earth with the help of famous characters of Middle-earth, trying to gather influence and power to aid in the battle against The Dark Lord, while another player tries to harass, and ultimately kill his characters with specific hazard cards. Then, for each player's turn, the roles change clockwise around the table (the player who was moving his characters then throws hazards at the player to his or her right). Any player may also win by acquiring and destroying The One Ring after a complicated set of events.
Later expansions have added the possibility to take the role of a Ringwraith of Sauron (MELE), a corrupted wizard playing by his own rules (MEWH), the malevolent Balrog (MEBA), or even Sauron himself. The game is somewhat distinguished from most other CCG's with the use of two six-sided dice for a random factor and also by the actual map of Middle-earth, including regions your companies travel through, and site cards they visit.
MECCG won two Origins Awards: Best Card Game of 1995 for MECCG: The Wizards and Best Graphic Presentation of a Card Game or Expansion of 1996 for MECCG: The Dragons. The game's production ended in 1999, when ICE lost the license that allowed them to use the content of Tolkien's The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit (this license was later bought by Decipher, who used it to bring out another CCG, the The Lord of the Rings Trading Card Game). MECCG still has a relatively loyal and active fanbase of players.
Like the majority of collectible card games, individual cards in MECCG occurred more or less often in a booster or starter deck (except in MEBA). To describe the rarity of a card, ICE used a code system:
- R = Rare.
- U = Uncommon.
- C = Common.
- F# or Fixed# = Part of a fixed set of cards (of a starter deck).
These abbreviations were often combined with second abbreviations (e.g., "CB2"). For more information on the second abbreviations, which varied in the different expansion and basic sets, see the "Card list"-sections for the individual card sets below.
- 1995: The Wizards (METW) - first basic set
- 1997: The Lidless Eye (MELE) - second basic set
- 1997: The White Hand (MEWH)
- 1998: The Balrog (MEBA)
Two more expansion sets were designed, but never reached publication: The Dwarf-lords and The Elf-lords. In addition, a complete revision of the MECCG was planned to be released in 1999, which was to be named Lord of the Rings Expandable Card Game (LORE CG).
- A Long-Expected Party: MECCG Sites and Scenarios
- Middle-earth: The Wizards Companion
- Middle-earth: The Wizards Player Guide
- Middle-earth: The Dragons Player Guide
- Middle-earth CCG Maps
- Middle-earth: Dark Minions Player Guide
- Middle-earth: The Lidless Eye Companion
- Middle-earth: The Lidless Eye Player Guide
- Middle-earth: The Wizards Casual Companion
- Middle-earth: Against the Shadow Player Guide
- CarolinaCon Regional MECCG Newsletter
- Mastering Middle-earth: Strategies for Middle-earth The Wizards