Three enemy cards always lie on the table in The Lord of the Rings: The Battle for Middle-earth Card Game. Each enemy card shows a combination of one (e.g. Orc patrol) to four (e.g. Balrog) symbols, with six different symbols total in the game: sword, axe, spear, bow, fist, and shield. In order to beat the enemies, the players collect groups of companion cards (which also show symbols) in front of them. Once the symbols of a group match one or more enemy cards, the player can send this group to battle to win enemy cards. The group is then discarded.