Upcoming Games: Heroclix: The Gathering: Month 4: Rise of the Eldrazi!!

[EDITOR’S NOTE: This is the fourth in a quick series of local game announcements for SouthEast Michigan Clix’ers before we go back to our regular programming!! We’re running a Scenario called Heroclix: The Gathering, obviously inspired by the eternally popular CCG Magic: The Gathering. Each month is based–very loosely–off of an existing Magic expansion. We then weave everything together with an ever-evolving narrative that changes based on the results of our local tournaments. Think of this as a “What If” Magic: The Gathering story told through Heroclix! Read about the Month One posting here, the Month Two scenario here, and the Month Three game here!]

ELDRAZI EMRAKUL 1

Welcome to Month Four of Heroclix: The Gathering!! Before we get into what’s happening this Month, let’s review everything that has happened in our story so far…

HEROCLIX: THE GATHERING: MONTH THREE: TIME SPIRAL!!

The Guildpact has been shattered. Ravnica has been torn apart from the inside by the machinations of its Guild Paruns (notably Szadek of House Dimir) and their ever escalating intrigues. But the shattering of the Guildpact also attracted the attention of the predatory plane of New Phyrexia, who opened portals to Ravnica in pursuit of conquest and resources. 

New Phyrexia invasion 2

As the Phyrexian legions pour in, Compleation seemed inevitable for the Ravnicans until Momir Vig, Simic Guildmaster, unveiled his secret weapon:  Experiment Kraj, a gigantic, mutated Ooze. 

Experiment Kraj

Kraj rolled through the City, absorbing Ravnican and Phyrexian alike, until the initial Phyrexian invaders were forced to retreat. Reasoning that a Second Wave of Phyrexian invaders was all but assured to wipe them out, the surviving Paruns of Ravnica regrouped in the vast smoldering ruin of the Azorius Senate, where they came up with the dangerous idea of summoning a powerful temporal storm called a Time Spiral to spirit Ravnican warriors of both the past and the future into their present timeline to help their cause…

Day's Undoing

 

 

 

 

Their gambit worked. The Phyrexians have been defeated by the heroes of Ravnica’s past and future, and Szadek slew their champion, Glissa the Traitor. The demon Rakdos used an ancient spell to seal off the Phyrexian portals, and the threat of Compleation is now over. 

HEROCLIX: THE GATHERING: MONTH FOUR: RISE OF THE ELDRAZI!!

Rise of the Eldrazi 2.jpg

Except… actions have consequences, and the sundering of the Guildpact combined with the ripping of time itself have now brought the Ravnican plane to the attention of the Old Gods known now as the Eldrazi, once thought to be locked away in the prison plane of Zendikar. 

But the Eldrazi are native to the Blind Eternities, the space between planes, and what was once their prison is now more of a fortress, a stronghold from whence they will pour forth and reclaim their position at the top of the planar hierarchy.

Ulamog avatar.jpg

Many hoped that the triumph of Ravnica over the Phyrexians would usher in a new era of fairness and justice for all. But soon, there will be no “fair.” There will be no “just.” There will only be the will of the Eldrazi.

And they are rising…

 

Well then!! Hello fellow Clixers, and welcome to the fourth and FINAL Month of Heroclix: The Gathering, exclusiviely at Comics & More in Madison Heights, MI!!

Month One ended with Roberto Ty piloting a House Dimir team to victory (with noted Spy Nick Fury standing in for Szadek!), which is why House Dimir came out on tops in our Month One recap story.

However, in Month Two, Matthew Wenderski used a Simic Combine squad to triumph over all comers, resulting in Momir Vig saving the day in that chapter.

Matt won again in Month Three, but now everyone will face the doom of the Eldrazi in Month Four as we play out the final battle for Ravnica!

But before we get to this Month’s Build, let’s have a look at the Scoreboard!

Again, to review, each competitor scored Tournament Points as follows:

Showing Up: 1 Tournament Point

Match Loss or Tie: 1 Tournament Point

Match Win: 2 Tournament Points

Event Win: 3 Tournament Points

And now, without further ado…

The 2017 Comics & More Heroclix: The Gathering Scoreboard (after 3 Months):

1. Matt Wenderski: 24 Tournament Points [2540 Tiebreaker Points]

(Month One: 4 TP’s; Month Two: 10 TP’s; Month Three: 10 TP’s)

 

2. Tyler Pienta: 17 Tournament Points [1533 Tiebreaker Points]

(Month One: 5 TP’s; Month Two: 6 TP’s; Month Three: 6 TP’s)

3. Cam: 15 Tournament Points [1513 Tiebreaker Points]

(Month One: 5 TP’s; Month Two: 5 TP’s; Month Three: 5 TP’s)

4. Andrew Boger: 15 Tournament Points [1328 Tiebreaker Points]

(Month One: 6 TP’s; Month Two: 6 TP’s; Month Three: 3 TP’s)

5. Roberto Ty: 15 Tournament Points [1065 Tiebreaker Points]

(Month One: 10 TP’s; Month Two: 5 TP’s; Month Three: 0 TP’s)

6. Real Tim (Kropf): 11 Tournament Points [1140 Tiebreaker Points]

(Month One: 5 TP’s; Month Two: 6 TP’s; Month Three: 0 TP’s)

7. Tim O.: 10 Tournament Points [1135 Tiebreaker Points]

(Month One: 6 TP’s; Month Two: 4 TP’s; Month Three: 0 TP’s)

8. Ben (Jammin’): 9 Tournament Points [815 Tiebreaker Points]

(Month One: 6 TP’s; Month Two: 5 TP’s; Month Three: 0 TP’s)

9. (Baron) Carl (Mordo): 6 Tournament Points [663 Tournament Points]

(Month One: 0 TP’s; Month Two: 6 TP’s; Month Three: 0 TP’s)

10. Darren Chin: 5 Tournament Points [83 Tiebreaker Points]

(Month One: 0 TP’s; Month Two: 5 TP’s; Month Three: 0 TP’s)

 

 

 

 

 

And now, for this week’s Build!!

The Game: Heroclix: The Gathering: Month 4: Rise of the Eldrazi!

Entry Fee: $5

Prizes: It’s Month Four, so there will be a bunch of prizes of all sorts!! Some will be hella sweet, some will be really stupid, but we are going to have us some fun!!

The Build: 600 Points (an even bigger conflict means even bigger armies!!), GOLDEN AGE, No Tactics (No Resources, ATA’s or Relics.)

No figure larger than a peanut base (UNLESS YOU ARE PLAYING ELDRAZI!! See the Eldrazi entry for more details).

No Call-Ins.

Possession pieces are okay to play. (Basically the Heroclix version of an Aura Enchantment, right?)

You must choose a Guild or other faction from the chart below. Once you’ve chosen, your army must be built around the generic keyword pairings associated with that Guild or faction. This means that everyone on your force must have at least ONE of the two generic keywords listed.

All characters friendly to your force can use the associated Guild Team Ability (GTA) or Faction Team Ability (FTA).

NOTE: After the sundering of the Guildpact at the end of Month One, the Guild Team Abilities are all your figures have to fall back on. This means that ANY OTHER TEAM ABILITY POSSESSED BY YOUR PIECES CANNOT BE USED. Note that characters still POSSESS whatever Team Abilities are printed on their base and card; they just cannot USE them.

List of Ravnica Guilds (Guild descriptions provided by MTGSalvation.com):

azorius

AZORIUS SENATE

The Azorius Senate functions as the government of Ravnica and creates Ravnican laws.

Keywords:  PoliticianRuler

Azorius Senate Team AbilityAt the beginning of the game, place an Immunity token on the character card of one character with the highest point value of those using this team ability. When a character with an Immunity token is within 8 squares of an opposing character’s starting area and is dealt damage, it may be given an action token to remove the Immunity token from its card and ignore the damage dealt. When a character with the Immunity token on its card is KO’d, you may place the Immunity token on the card of the remaining character on your force that is the highest point character that can use the team ability.

GAMEPLAY NOTES: The Azorius Senate was all but destroyed following the events of Month One. Their leader, Augustin IV was murdered and their guild hall was decimated. They are still rebuilding. Therefore, the Azorius Senate MAY NOT BE CHOSEN for Month Four builds.

boros-legion

BOROS LEGION

Ravnica’s security force, the Boros Legion is both Ravnica’s constabulary and standing army. The Boros suffered a terrible blow when their Parun, Razia, was killed in battle, but another angel, Feather, has rallied the Legion back into battle readiness. The Eldrazi are coming, and its all hands on deck.

Keywords:  Police, Soldier

Boros Legion Team AbilityAdjacent friendly characters modify their range values by +1. When a character using this Team Ability is adjacent to a friendly character making a ranged combat attack, modify the target’s defense value by -1 if the target is within line of fire of this character.

GAMEPLAY NOTES: Feather hasn’t just revived the Boros Legion, she’s slightly upgraded their capabilities. Note that adjacent friendly characters now modify their range values by +1 in addition to the previous effects of the Boros Legion Team Ability.

 

house-dimir

HOUSE DIMIR

In practice, little information on the Dimir is known. It is, however, known that the Dimir are involved in assassinations, criminal activity, and espionage on a contractual basis.

Szadek has led his House to victory, but the celebration is short lived. Even if he can muster enough strength to repel the invaders, the other guilds may use this new conflict as an opportunity to take back what was taken from them. 

While subtlety will always be the primary tactic of House Dimir, the time has come to step out from the shadows and remind everyone why they should be afraid of what stirs in the night…

Keywords:  Spy, Assassin

House Dimir Team Ability: A character using this team ability can’t have their defense power countered if they occupy the lowest elevation of terrain.

GAMEPLAY NOTES: The House Dimir Team Ability has not changed since its revision in Month Two. While their presence in the shadows of Ravnica is now common knowledge, they are still very hard to deal with if encountered on their home turf–Ravnica’s sewers and Underbelly…

golgari-swarm

GOLGARI SWARM

Denizens of Ravnica’s agricultural and waste management sectors. Run by Gorgon sisters. And creepy fungal sewer monsters.

Keywords: Monster, Assassin

Golgari Swarm Team Ability: Characters using this team ability can use Stealth on their starting click. If that character can already use Stealth on their starting click, lines of fire may not be drawn to that character by opposing characters while on that click.

GAMEPLAY NOTES: No change to Golgari Swarm.

gruul-clans

GRUUL CLANS

Ravnica’s foresters, gamekeepers, park rangers, wildlife officers, and wildskeepers. But with the wilds declining, the role of the Clans has also diminished, and many Gruul Clans members have adopted an anarcho-primitivist ideology and become Ravnica’s defenders of nature, intent on destroying civilization.

Keywords: Animal, Brute

Gruul Clans Team AbilityAll successful attacks made by a character using this Team Ability generate knock back. Knock back generated by a character using this Team Ability cannot be ignored.

GAMEPLAY NOTES: No change to Gruul Clans.

izzet-league

IZZET LEAGUE

Ravnica’s formative and physical scientists and engineers. The Izzet League are known to perform magical experiments, ever with reckless abandon and sometimes with spectacular but severe results.

Keywords: Scientist, Mystical 

Izzet League Team AbilityWhen a character using the Izzet League Team Ability takes damage from an attack, roll a d6 that can’t be rerolled and consult the chart below for the resulting effect.

1: This character takes 1 additional unavoidable damage and gets an action token after actions resolve.

2: This character takes 1 additional unavoidable damage.

3-4: The attacker is dealt 1 unavoidable damage.

5: The attacker is dealt 1 unavoidable damage and gets an additional action token after actions resolve (if able).

6: The attacker is dealt 2 unavoidable damage.

GAMEPLAY NOTES: No change to Izzet League. Once normal Mystics was turned off, this GTA worked extremely well (instead of being EXTREMELY overpowered).

orzhov-syndicate

ORZHOV SYNDICATE

Nearly every business in Ravnica ties back to the Orzhov in some devious way or another. Whilst they bear the facade of a religious group and may well have been a true faith at the signing of the Guildpact, they now worship only profit and power.

Keywords: Mystical, Politician

Orzhov Syndicate Team AbilityCharacters using this Team Ability can’t be the target of an opponent’s Outwit or Perplex unless they’ve been targeted with an attack previously in the same turn.

GAMEPLAY NOTES: No change to Orzhov.

rakdos

CULT OF RAKDOS

Founded by Parun Rakdos, an ancient demon, the Cult of Rakdos attend to menial labor and the services industry, which includes some less-than-savory offerings, such as assassination, as well as more agreeable ones, such as the catering (i.e., food service) and entertainment industries.

Using the strife of the end of the Guildpact as a distraction, acolytes of Rakdos have finally managed to raise their Parun from the depths of darkness and despair. But will Rakdos choose to fight the invaders or decide to use this opportunity to thwart Szadek and seize Ravnica for his own?

Keywords: Monster, Mystical

Cult of Rakdos Team AbilityWhenever a character using this team ability is KO’d, you may roll a d6 and subtract 2 (minimum 1). Deal that much damage, divided as you choose, among any number of opposing characters adjacent to the square the KO’d character occupied.

GAMEPLAY NOTES: No change to the Team Ability, but please note that the return of the demon Rakdos has slightly altered the Cult of Rakdos keywords. Now a character must have either the Monster or Mystical keyword to be eligible for the Cult of Rakdos (I mean, they just awakened their demon overlord, so, yeah… )

selesnya-conclave

SELESNYA CONCLAVE

Despite their superficial appearance of being a “good” and “peace-loving”, in truth the guild is just as hypocritical and as sinister, if not more so, as other Ravnican guilds. The Selesnya Conclave often employs its quietmen and other members to silence the civilians of Ravnica from up close and wreak havoc.

Keywords: Brute, Spy

Selesnya Conclave Team AbilityWhen characters using this Team Ability roll doubles on a successful close attack roll, that attack generates no knock back; instead, that attack cannot be evaded, damage dealt can’t be reduced below 1 and any hit characters get an action token.

GAMEPLAY NOTES: No change from Month 2.

simic-combine

SIMIC COMBINE

The original purpose of the Simic Combine was to preserve the health of all Ravnican life-forms. They were devoted to the study of life, medicines, and biomancy. But just as life can adapt, so did the Combine. Momir Vig, the Simic guildmaster, was dissatisfied with this original purpose and formed a new purpose: to improve upon life-forms of Ravnica.

Keywords: Animal, Scientist

Simic Combine Team Ability: At the beginning of your turn, choose one option to last until the end of your turn for all friendly characters using this Team Ability. All friendly characters using this Team Ability ignore Shape Change; or all friendly characters using this Team Ability ignore Stealth this turn.

GAMEPLAY NOTES: The Month 2 change helped this Guild quite a bit (indeed, both players in the Championship game were playing Simic), so it will stay as is for now.

phryexian-mana

NEW PHYREXIA

It came not in the form of a noble struggle, a fair contest of warriors clashing will against will, but as a wave of unstoppable slaughter. Mirran partisans resisted bravely, using their wits and magic to fend off the onslaught that originated from inside their own world. But their efforts were for naught. Phyrexia is victorious. Mirrodin now goes by a different name: New Phyrexia.

And New Phyrexia hungers…

Keywords: Robot, Armor

New Phyrexia Team Ability: Characters using this team ability can use Perplex, but only to target a character with the Armor or Robot keyword. This use of Perplex may not modify damage values, and no character may be targeted by this ability more than twice per turn. This use is in addition to any other uses of Perplex.

GAMEPLAY NOTES: The Phyrexians have finally been defeated! Thus, they can no longer be chosen.

Time Spiral logo

TIME SPIRAL

From Ravnica’s forged Past to its many posssible Futures come the warriors caught in the Time Spiral. But even if they are able to turn the tide of the war with New Phyrexia, what will become of them once the invasion is over? And if the sundering of the Guildpact awakened the interest of New Phyrexia, whose attention might the spiraling of time itself attract?

Now, that question has been answered. The Eldrazi are rising…

Keywords: Past, Future

Time Spiral Team Ability: Characters using this Team Ability may use
Probability Control. When a roll is ignored because of this
team ability an action token must be placed on a friendly
character on the battlefield or the roll is not ignored.

GAMEPLAY NOTES: The time-displaced warriors of Ravnica come packed with the ability to manipulate time itself. No change for Month Four.

 

Eldrazi Logo

The Eldrazi are gargantuan monstrosities who have transcended the colors of mana as we know them. Native to the Blind Eternities, they are huge and immensely powerful. Confronting them is like confronting the multiverse itself.

Keywords: Deity, Cosmic, Monster

Additional Requirements: Characters who cost less than 100 Points may not be chosen for this faction. 

Rise of the Eldrazi Team Ability:  Characters using the Rise of Eldrazi Team Ability can use Willpower and their powers cannot be countered. When you build your force, you may include characters with any size base as long as they still meet the Rise of Eldrazi Keyword Requirements.

 

Alright! There is your Month Four Scenario! Hope to see everyone at the game! And thanks to everyone who has attended these events (and also to all of you who have left comments about this! If you’ve run this scenario at your local venue, let us know how it went!). It’s been a blast to see such positive responses from you folks!

The Totally Awesome Set!! (Or, a Top Ten Set Review of Avengers Defenders War!!)

AVD War.png

Well now! It’s been awhile, but I’m finally back, and my return to writing articles here on Critical Missives couldn’t have come at a better time!

Because Avengers Defenders War is here, and it’s so much more than “Marvel’s Joker’s Wild,” as some around here (HypeFox) have dubbed it, although there are some such comparisons to be made..

To wit:

(AKA, Some Notes About the Set:)

Porcupine

Yup. If you open Porcupine in a meaningful tournament, you are definitely “FIKKT.”

  • The Commons and Uncommons are both exciting  and good, but the Rares kinda suck. And by “kinda” I mean, like, they are really, truly, awfully garbage-y. There are MAYBE three Rares that might ever see play from me in this set. Opening a pack with ADW049 Porcupine or ADW043 Machete as your Rare is just a real downer. 
Gladiator

Pull me as your Rare in Sealed and you’ll have the same look on your face.

  • While I had some very good experiences using this set in Sealed, most people (HypeFox) were not as enthusiastic. I spoke to one person playing sealed at a Wizkids Open whose Rares were ADW042 Gladiator and ADW041 Foggy Nelson. In fact, Gladiator was his most expensive piece at 60 points. It’s hard to face off against pieces that are 150 points or more like ADW040 Count Nefaria when nothing you have to use is over 60 points. Those boosters might as well have come with a note telling you what time Battle Royals were going to start.

Ron Burgandy Wizkids

  • There were no Primes in this set. That meant a case might have 3 SR’s and a Chase in one brick, and just 3 SR’s in the other. So if you bought just a brick you weren’t guaranteed a Chase or a Prime.

Sir Not Appearing.png

  • Big pictures of Thor and Namor on the boxes, no trace of  them in set. I’m still waiting to pull one.

Shifting Focus key

  • And finally, on a personal level, I really love Shifting Focus and I hope they do more of it in sets to come.

Okay! Enough of that! Let’s get into some…

TOP FIVE HONORABLE MENTIONS:

Vision Phasing

5. ADW006 Vision —  50 Points — Common: I don’t remember ever seeing a dial with 5 clicks of Invincible and Impervious for 50 Points. It’s also unusual to see a 50 Point dial with Indomitable. Add to that an offense that lets him do 3 Damage through reducers and you’ve got yourself a great package.

His only weaknesses are a complete lack of range and no move and attack save for two top clicks of Sidestep. Thankfully, both of those weaknesses can be fixed with a free action when you shift to ADW024 Vision because, oh yeah, HE ALSO SHIFTS FOCUS IN CASE HE WASN’T ALREADY OVERPOWERED FOR HIS POINTS!

Hulk Gray

4. ADW021 Hulk —  75 Points — Uncommon: For 75 points you get 6 Clicks featuring Invincible and then Impervious. He has 4 Damage for his entire dial and Traited Super Strength to add to the damage even more (and add knockback under the new rules that are coming out). When he does get hurt, his combination of Flurry and Steal Energy will help minimize the pain.

He’s very undercosted for his points which is why Wizkids added a negative Trait to his card (LEAVE HULK ALONE!: At the beginning of your turn, if Hulk was targeted with an attack since your last turn, place an Anger token on his card. If Hulk wasn’t targeted with an attack since your last turn, remove an Anger token from his card. After placing or removing Anger tokens, if Hulk has 5 Anger tokens or more he is immediately KO’d.). Fortunately for Hulk enthusiasts, Wizkids was too conservative with the trait and I have a hard time imagining it ever mattering in a game. 

Wasp Costume Change.gif

3. ADW023 Wasp —  40 Points — Uncommon: I’ll bet a fair amount of you reading this article will think that that this an unusual choice. But I love this piece. She is one part Secondary Attacker and one part Support Figure. Offensively she is similar to ADW035 Dr. Strange, but instead of hiding behind your other characters she can remain in the open. Why? Because this 40 point character has a 21 defense against ranged attacks! Psychic Blast allows her to bypass damage reducers when she wants to get offensive or she can Costume Change to ADW023 Wasp and use her dual target Incapacitate. Her supporting Leadership power allows her to remove tokens from a much higher point character and her small size also allows almost anyone to carry her.

Batroc.jpg

2. ADW050 Batroc —  40 Points — Rare: Batroc usually doesn’t get much respect in the comics, but in the HeroClix world he’s the real deal. Even though his Attack and Defense values are average, he really stands out in three areas: His low point cost of 40; his Improved Movement that ignores Hindering and Elevated Terrain and also Characters; and his Special Movement Power Zey Call Me… Ze Lee-Pair. It reads,Batroc can use Sidestep. When he has one action token, he may use Sidestep twice this turn and may be given a free action to make a close attack.” If he starts a turn with one action token, he can move up to 4 spaces (ignoring most terrain and moving through characters) and make a free action attack with Precision Strike. And after all that, he still clears tokens!

Klaw.jpg

1. ADW059 Klaw —  110 Points — Super Rare: Klaw is that rare balance of strong offense, defense, and movement. On offense he’s got a starting 4 Damage Value and the ability to pick any Attack Power once each turn. That can be Psychic Blast, Pulse Wave, or even Telekinesis if the situation warrants it. He also has a Movement Special Power that lets him ignore almost all terrain and Sidestep as many as 6 squares each turn.

That means he could Sidestep through a wall and then Pulse Wave someone on the other side. On defense he has Can’t Hurt What’s Made of Sound which states,Klaw can use Super Senses. If Klaw would take more than 2 damage, he takes 2 damage instead.” The only thing keeping him from going higher on this list are low(-ish) Attack Values and a lack of Willpower.

All of which brings us to…

THE TOP TEN FIGURES IN AVENGERS DEFENDERS WAR!!

Ghost Rider

10. ADW064 Ghost Rider —  75 Points — Super Rare: This is the best of the mounted figures that move through opposing forces in a straight line, but all three in this set are worth owning. He starts with his super movement power that lets you do 2 Penetrating Damage by attacking every opposing figure in a straight line.  On defense he starts with Invulnerability and Indomitable.

What sets him apart from the other mounted figures is that when he hits an opposing figure he can move them one space to either side of the path he traveled. Taking into account that he ignores most terrain this could make him very good against opposing Stealthy characters or really any piece that relies on adjacency (defense balls, Mastermind, etc.).

Nuke

9. ADW048 Nuke —  70 Points — Super Rare:  I love characters that can heal themselves and Nuke has that covered. At the start of his turn he can choose the Red Pill for +1 attack in close combat, the Blue Pill for Precision Strike, or the White Pill for a one click heal in lieu of attacking this turn.

He starts with Running Shot, Energy Explosion (which combos nicely with the Blue Pill and Precision Strike) and when he gets damaged he gains Charge plus Super Strength (which is when you’ll want to start popping Red Pills to grant him +1 attack). When it’s time to clear tokens a White Pill will heal some of the damage he’s taken. He’s not going to take down a 150 point (or more) figure single-handedly, but he offers a lot for just 70 points.

Totally Awesome Hulk

8. ADW052 (Totally Awesome) Hulk —  160 Points — Super Rare: I’ll say it again. I love characters that can heal themselves. Before you play him (or play against him) his healing isn’t obvious. He is one of those pieces that is better in practice than on paper.

His BATTLING MONSTERS! Trait (BATTLING MONSTERS!: When Hulk hits an opposing character with the Monster keyword or with a printed damage value of 4 or more, after actions resolve remove an action token from him.) doesn’t come in handy that often, but his BEST HULK EVER Trait is one of the best Traits I’ve ever seen. It reads, “Hulk can use Super Strength. When he KO’s an opposing character, heal him a number of clicks equal to the damage that would have been taken minus the actual damage taken.” When you combine the Traited Super Strength with his printed 4 damage on every click, he can dish out a lot of damage. That leads to high damage KOs which in turn power his healing.

I used him in Sealed to take first place during a Prerelease. In all three games he was knocked down to at least his second to last click, but ended each game near the top of his dial. While he can’t do everything himself, with the proper supporting figures he can soak up damage and KO his way to good health.

CountNefaria

7. ADW040 Count Nefaria —  200 Points — Rare: He has bad keywords (Lethal Legion, Maggia, Ruler), but a pretty decent dial for 200 points. He starts with Running Shot, Psychic Blast, Invincible to go along with his Stealth. His 7 Range and Stealth helps keep Outwit from targeting him on his first three clicks and Flight means that his movement won’t be hampered by hiding in Hindering Terrain.

The reason why he is so high on this list is his improved form of regeneration “IONIC RESERVES.” He has it sprinkled through out his dial. It says, “Count Nefaria can use Invulnerability and Regeneration. When he uses Regeneration and has one action token, he doesn’t subtract 2 from the d6 roll.” With a lucky roll he could regenerate for 6 clicks of healing!

Chairdevil

6. ADW068 Daredevil (AKA Chair Devil)—  80 Points — Chase: For 80 Points you get the 6 clicks with the Mystics TA, Traited Stealth, Precision Strike, and Super Senses. He has better than average attack and Flurry in the middle of his dial to make that Precision Strike hurt.

That might be enough to justify his point cost right there, but his Trait “LEADER OF THE HAND” allows him to generate nearly unlimited tie up figures with Stealth and the Hydra TA. It reads, “Once per turn, give Daredevil a power action to place a #adw015 Hand Ninja from outside the game in a square of hindering terrain within range and line of fire. If a friendly character with The Hand keyword was KO’d since your last turn, this is a free action instead.

So at the beginning of the game you can make a few ADW015 Hand Ninja before the other force even gets close. Then for the rest of the game when ANY other member of the Hand on your team gets KOed you can make another ADW015 Hand Ninja as a free action on your turn.

Doc Strange SF

5. ADW035 Dr. Strange —  50 Points — Rare: This version of the Doctor is equal parts Finger Bang DXF017 Deadpool (Sidestep, Psy Blast) and DXF059B Wiz Kid (+1 to stats to adjacent characters)Add to that his Shifting Focus versions that Transport your team (ADW001 Dr. Strange) or Defend it (ADW019 Dr. Strange) and you’ve got a great figure and one of the most versatile pieces in the set!

Punisher Rocket Launcher.png

4. ADW030 Punisher-–  50 Points — Uncommon: Everyone who attended an ADW Prerelease knows about (Rocket Launcher) ADW009 Punisher. That guy dished out ranged group damage that far exceeds his 50 point value. Unfortunately, as easily as he can dish out the damage he can also easily take it in return. That means that most of the time you will need to use the much more subtle ADW030 Punisher.

This close combat version of the Punisher features an improved form of BCF, Combat Reflexes, Indomitable, Wildcard TA, and most importantly Stealth. This dial alone is worth the 50 points even if you never switch forms. So keep him in that form until it’s just the right time to strike and then “say hello to my little friend!” for fun and profit!

Iron Man ADW.jpg

3. ADW053 Iron Man —  165 Points — Super Rare: So the first thing everyone thinks of when they see a Primary Attacker character in Modern that allows them to pick a power is “how does that character compare to JW053B Jakeem Thunder?”

Here are Iron Man’s advantages:

  • Better Keywords
  • Slightly better combat values
  • Better powers before you start picking powers (including damage reducers)
  • He can gain new powers via a free action, not just at the start of turn

Here are Jakeem’s advantages:

  • 1 click longer dial
  • 25 points less cost
  • 1 square longer range
  • Can chose a Defense Power
  • Doesn’t lose existing powers when he gains new powers
  • Choosing powers is Traited and lasts the whole dial
  • Has a Team Ability

JW053B Jakeem Thunder is still a better piece, but there are some situations where Iron Man is better. Keeping in mind that Jakeem Thunder is the piece to beat right now in competitive play, coming close means that this Iron Man is a piece you should look to own.

RiRi Williams.jpg

2. ADW071 Iron Heart—  25 Points — Chase: She is one part ADW007 Black Panther (cheap Outwit), one part JW025 Hawkman (cheap Taxi),  and one part JW060V The Joker (she doesn’t die easy).

Her Sidestep, Flight, and 10 Movement make her a top tier Taxi and at 25 points there is no Taxi piece cheaper in Modern Age. She starts with Outwit, but she shuffles among all the best supporting powers (Outwit, Perplex and Probability Control) as she takes damage.

Her 18 defense is bolstered by the Trait ARMOR’S FALLING APART ON ME. It reads, “Iron Heart begins the game with 1 Broken Armor token. When she is dealt damage, instead roll a d6 that can’t be rerolled. If the result is equal to or less than the number of Broken Armor tokens, she is KO’d. If not, turn her to that click number and give her another Broken Armor token. This can’t be ignored.” So the first time she takes damage she has an 17% chance of being KOed. After 2 hits it’s 33%. After 3 it’s 50%. On average she will be KOed after 3 hits, but it can take as many as 6 hits to KO her if you have lucky rolls. Also, it’s only the number of hits that count, not the amount of damage, not even if it’s Pulse Wave damage. It’s all the same to RiRi.

WF061 Superman with an Ultra Heavy Object will do 8 damage to any other character, but it still is just one broken token for Iron Heart. WF048 Zatara can sacrifice himself to do a 4 damage Pulse Wave attack. Iron Heart will just take one broken token in place of that damage. That’s insane for 25 points.

Dr. Strange Earth's Guardian.png

1. ADW051 Dr. Strange, Earth’s Guardian—  80 Points — Super Rare (Title Character): One of my main complaints about DXF060 Deadpool, Merc With A Mouth is that his keywords (Initiative and X-Factor) don’t leave a lot of options for team building. In fact they kinda suck. Well, Wizkids must have heard those complaints because Dr. Strange was made with the Avengers and Mystical keywords. If you can’t find good team building options with those keywords then I have nothing for you.

His dial alone is almost worth 80 points. 7 range with Sidestep, 11 Attack, Psychic Blast, 3 Damage, and Probability Control should do well on offense. Defensively, 18 Defense, the Mystics TA, and Energy Shield/Deflection are above average for his point cost. He also has 6 clicks of life and his values for attack and defense stay relatively the same throughout.

He has three Title Character Abilities. His first ability reads “Every Scrap Of Hidden Sorcery: Modify Dr. Strange, Earth’s Guardian’s or an adjacent friendly character’s damage value by +1 this turn.” That’s a great effect and I would use that often, but it’s his third title ability that really blows me away. It says, “Sorceror Supreme: For the rest of the game, as long as Dr. Strange, Earth’s Guardian is on the map you may reroll an attack roll each turn.” That’s huge. It’s in addition to any use of Probability Control your team might have, and it lets him join the ranks of the only two other characters in Modern who can affect your rolls anywhere on the board: SMWW060 Mr. Mxyzptlk and TMNT2029 Renet Tilley.

And that’s why Dr. Strange, Earth’s Guardian is the best character in this set.

Tippy-Toe-ing Through The Rainbows On Unicorns!! (Or, The Top Ten Figures in Deadpool & X-Force!!)

Squirrel Girl

Welcome Back, Welcome Back!!

Well, Avengers/Defenders War is almost upon us, so I figured it was time to crank out at DXF Top Ten. Unfortunately, my brother Ninwashui has been immobilized for the better part of the last month with a serious illness that he’s only now getting over, so we’re a bit behind on things (what else is new?).

But enough jibber-jabber! Okay! You folks know how this works: Five Honorable Mentions, followed by Ten Top… uh, Ten figures!!

Also, normally I’d start with some Notes About the Set, but, well, I kinda already covered that during the Wind Apocalypse of 2017!

The only thing I’ll add is that I think this is one of the strongest top-to-bottom sets that we’ve gotten since World’s Finest (and probably the most powerful Marvel set we’ve gotten since Nick Fury, Agent of S.H.I.E.L.D.), so no Top Ten list (even with our customary five Honorable Mentions) could cover every great figure in this set. So if we left something off, hopefully that piece will come up in a future article (so sorry, Chipmunk Hunk!). It’s not that we don’t like, say, Fast Forces Stingray, or Solo in his Deadpool uniform–it’s just that there’s only so much we can spotlight in one article!! But this is a deep, deep set that will spawn a ton of Meta play!

So, with that said… LET’S GET ON WITH IT!!

 

FIVE HONORABLE MENTIONS:

 

Terror

5. DXF101 Terror100 PointsLE:

This is one of the better release date LE’s we’ve gotten in quite some time (at least as far as figures go–that Symbiote object from SFoSM is getting used a TON in the Meta right now). Terror is an interesting character who has been tooling around the Marvel Universe for 25 years and who has now, finally, been Clix’d (with THREE versions no less!).

What makes his dial so interesting is his Morro-like Trait (HE WON’T BE NEEDING IT: When an adjacent standard character is KO’d, choose a standard power that character could use on any click. Terror can use that power this game.) that theoretically allows him to access almost any power in the game! And remember, his Trait doesn’t care if that figure is opposing or friendly–only that it’s adjacent.

Beyond that, Terror gives you seven Clicks of life, Sidestep, 3 native damage, three Regen Clicks on the back end and a weird Outwit that only letss him counter Pink powers (Sidestep, Precision Strike, Invincible & Empower), which, I guess, is better than NOT being able to counter anything.

I can’t quite say that he’ll be a Meta staple (he takes a lot of in-game planning to get going), but he is worth a look and he’s a lot of fun to field.

 

Fantomex

4. FFDXF003 Fantomex75 Points –Fast Forces:

Wow! Now this is what a 75 Point Secondary Attacker piece should look like! Great evasion with his Rooftop Movement Special (ROOF-RUNNING GUNFIGHTER: Fantomex can use Running Shot. On opponent’s turns, lines of fire drawn to Fantomex are blocked if he occupies the rim of elevated terrain.) and E.V.A.-provided Super Senses combined with a solid 3 Damage top dial with Energy Explosion and two bolts.

Alternatively, you can pop E.V.A. off and take advantage of her (his? its?) Outwit. For the points, this is an extremely solid complement to almost any Primary Attacker. If you Theme him and get to choose Map, he can really become a gamebreaker.

 

TT.jpg

3. DXF010 Tippy-Toe — 25 Points — Common:

Tippy-Toe is 25 points of tie-up annoyance that can also help break up teams that depend on hunkering down in covered, adjacent positions (Bizarro Green Arrows and the like)… but only on certain Maps (specifically those with a bevy of Hindering Terrain).

Her Attack Special (SQUIRREL TALK: Give Tippy-Toe a free action to deal 1 damage to an opposing character within 8 squares and line of fire that occupies printed hindering terrain.) lets her nibble at enemies from across the board. If they have Stealth or she loses that top dial power, though, she can still walk right up to characters to tie them up with her 18 Defense (plus Super Senses) and scratch them for 1 Exploit Damage.

 

Slapstick

2. FFDXF010 Slapstick — 50 Points — Fast Forces:

50 Points for Hypersonic Speed (or whatever Speed power you want), Willpower and 2 Damage with Precision Strike? Okay! Once again you are paying Support/Tertiary Attacker prices for a solid Secondary Attacker. Slapstick is awesome for taking out opposing Support pieces before they can impact the game.

 

Hulkpool.jpg

1. DXF064 Hulkpool — 125 Points — Chase:

Most of the (EIGHT!!) regular Chases in this set are pretty damn good. Even if you don’t like the dials by themselves, you have to remember that each of them can gain one of EIGHT different abilities as a free action from a Comic Panel marker if they have no action tokens at the beginning of your turn.

You can choose from Smoke Cloud (meh); Enhancement (eh… situationally useful); an extra Bolt (somewhat useless now–really useless in about two months when Energy Explosion gets nerfed); Quake (comes with this figure and is more on the “meh” side than not); Precision Strike (almost always useful); Stealth (wait, I can give what is essentially a Hulk dial Stealth? This is very useful!! Now I might make it across the board unscathed!!); Combat Reflexes (very useful!!); or Energy Shield/Deflection (even usefull-er!!).

This makes these pieces EXTREMELY adaptable, and adaptability is one of the key strategies in the current Meta (look no further than the domination of Jakeem Thunder right now).

So add to all that a dial that features 10 Movement with Charge; 12 Attack with Super Strength; 18 Defense with Impervious and 4 top dial damage WITH Probability Control! He also has Indomitable and 8 Clicks of life. His last 3 Clicks feature a Revert Special Power that basically lets you heal him one Click and then replace him with ANY figure that has Deadpool in its name (except for the new title character Deadpool).

Again, to reiterate:  you get insane Primary Attacker stats mixed with what basically amounts to a Resource (the eight Comic Panel powers) in an increasingly Resource-less Meta environment and HE BRINGS ALONG ONE OF THE THREE BEST SUPPORT POWERS IN THE GAME!!

This is the best Hulk dial they’ve made in a long time, AND THEY’VE MADE INSANELY GOOD HULK DIALS NONSTOP FOR THE PAST THREE YEARS!! I mean, can you name another Hulk with the ability to pop on ES/D or Stealth top dial to actually get across the board in one piece? Or another Hulk piece who can change into a competent Ranged Attacker at the end of his dial?

Do not sleep on Hulkpool!

 

And now, for your…

TOP TEN DEADPOOL AND X-FORCE FIGURES!!

 

Mistress Death

10. DXF052 Mistress Death — 100 Points — Super Rare: 

Yes, there is a lot that she doesn’t do. But her Touch of Death Trait (TOUCH OF DEATH: When Mistress Death hits with a close attack, immediately place a Touch of Death token on the target’s card if it doesn’t already have one. For the rest of the game, when a character with a Touch of Death token is dealt damage by an attack, double the damage dealt.) is almost bonkers-good–if you can get it off.

She also has another Trait (YOU CAN’T KILL DEATH… OR MARRY HER, I TRIED: When Mistress Death would be KO’d and there is another friendly character on the map, you may instead place her in your starting area on click #3 with 2 action tokens and the opponent scores her. This can’t be ignored.) that causes her to revive throughout the entire game as well as a third (THIRD!!!) Trait (THE REALM OF DEATH EXPANDS: When another standard character is KO’d, remove an action token from Mistress Death.) that means she’ll potentially be taking an action almost every turn as long as you are dishing out lethal punishment. And a 12 Attack with Pulse Wave is nothing to sneeze at, either.

If you can find a way to boost her with Plasticity (Symbiote maybe?) or TK her next to someone for consistent same turn strikes (hello Stryfe! or Jean Grey! or… you get the idea), you can turbo-charge the Damage Output of your entire squad in a hurry.

But I wish there was just some piece out there that could open some sort of Space Portal and let Death pop out adjacent to an opposing figure and attack it in the same turn. Alas, we live in a world governed by the laws of physics, but man, sometimes I just want to tell the laws of physics that they can kiss my… nevermind, this is a family website.

Well, family-ish.

 

Swarm

9. DXF054 Swarm — 120 Points — Super Rare:

Another piece that is just really hard to KO. Swarm has a Trait (ONLY THE QUEEN MATTERS: Unless the attack roll is doubles, Swarm takes no more than 1 damage from attacks.) and an Attack Special (ORPHAN SWARMS: Each time swarm hits an opposing character, after actions resolve put a Bee Swarm bystander adjacent to that character unless there already is one.) that can take over the game in certain matchups, especially if your opponent hasn’t packed the right abilities to counter him.

And yes, Poison is getting slightly nerfed in that it will no longer combo with Sidestep, but the Bee Swarm tokens that Swarm generates with each hit don’t count against your action total when they move, either, so navigating the map starts to become really tricky for your opponent (not Prime Anarky tricky, but still).

 

Stryfe.jpg

8. DXF058 Stryfe– 135 Points — Super Rare: 

Looking strictly at his dial and Standard Power mix, 135 might seem a tad high. However, his Attack Special (MIND OVER MATTER: Stryfe can use Telekinesis. He can use it as a free action if he has been given a non-free action this turn.) will allow him to send most of his minions exactly where they need to be on the map or bring an opponent to him.

But where he gets really evil is when your opponent actually KO’s him (THE LEGACY VIRUS: When Stryfe is KO’d, choose a named keyword. Opposing Characters with that keyword are dealt penetrating damage equal half their current click number. This can’t be ignored.). Which means there’s a timer on the game for your opponent. Either they come to Stryfe early, or they don’t come at Stryfe at all. Remember, you can even PUSH Stryfe into a KO and he goes off. Or you can just push him to his late-dial Running Shot/Pulse Wave, which is also a crowd-pleaser.

There’s a lot of options with this guy.

 

Dreadpool.jpg

7. DXF001B Dreadpool — 130 Points — Common PRIME:

So, his opening 8 Movement with Running Shot, 12 Attack with Pen/Psy, 18 Defense with Super Senses and 3 Damage with Perplex (!) is almost worth the 130 Points right there. Then you factor in his Willpower through Indomitable and his AWESOME Trait (DEADPOOL KILLUSTRATED: Dreadpool can use Steal Energy. At the beginning of your first turn, choose a named keyword an opposing character possesses. At the end of your turn, give Dreadpool a free action to make a close or range attack targeting a single opposing character with the chosen keyword if he has not attacked any character with the chosen keyword this turn.), and you realize that your favorite new Primary Attacker is quite capable of Alpha Striking half of the pieces in the Meta!

 

Cable

6. DXF014 Cable — 120 Points — Common: 

Where to start? Indomitable, 4 Damage with Prob, 11 Attack with Pen/Psy, Traited Stealth, Invuln AND ES/D (provided he has less than 2 Action Tokens), and a Movement Special (BODYSLIDE: Cable can use Phasing/Teleport. When he does and moves 5 squares or less, after actions resolve he may make a close or ranged attack.) that practically re-imagines Running Shot for the modern Meta.

Also, he has damn near every keyword you could ever want a mutant hero to have (Armor, Future, X-Men, X-Force, New Mutants, Soldier and Six-Pack!!), so he Themes quite nicely. And as a Primary Attacker who only costs 120, you’ll have plenty of room for supporting pieces.

 

Domino

5. FFDXF006R Domino — 25 Points — Fast Forces: 

Her 75 Point dial is also really good, but 25 points for 3 Clicks of Stealth, a 7 Range, 9 Attack with Precision Strike and 2 Clicks of Prob is a ton of bang for your buck. Improved Targeting: Ignores Hindering Terrain is being given out less and less lately, so that dial-long Stealth is going to be hard to deal with for many teams.

Top dial Prob almost never comes this cheap, and almost never with a Range greater than 6. She’s already seen Meta play in several ROC’s, and I expect that to only continue.

 

DP MWAM.jpg

4. DXF060 Deadpool, Merc With a Mouth — 70 Points — Super Rare:

The first ever “Title Charcter” Clix, this version of Wade is simply under-costed by about 40 points. He comes packed with a way to heal himself and can eventually work up to Slo-Mo Bullet Time, wherein he can deal 2 Penetrating damage to every opposing piece within 6 range as a free action. Yowza!

Otherwise, you’re just stuck with a Deadpool that has 8 Clicks of life, 11 Attack, Indomitable and 17 Defense WITH ES/D!!

His keywords aren’t great (Initiative, X-Factor), but that seems a small price to pay for so much goodness.

————————-INTERMISSION: FLASH FIGURE REVIEW #3: WIZ Kid!————————

Wiz Kid

Okay!! So, this is kind of a first for us, but we’re about to do a mini-article INSIDE of another article!! This is Flash Figure Review #3, and we’re gonna spotlight… Wiz Kid, the Super Rare Prime!

For a little 25 Point nugget of a piece, he’s already created a small bit of controversy.

First, let’s talk about his dial. 25 Points. You get about the numbers you’d expect: 3 Clicks of life, Toughness (with an above average 18 Defense value top dial, although it quickly falls), 5 Range, 7 Speed (with Flying, although his lone Trait states that he can’t Carry anyone) and 2 Damage with a Special Power (TECHNOFORM YOUR WEAPONS: Adjacent friendly characters modify their attack, range and damage values by +1.) that is pretty much the whole reason for playing him.

WHY WIZ KID BELONGS IN THE TOP TEN:

For those in the community who love him, they point out that for 25 Points you get a pretty mobile battery for your ENTIRE squad–he is, in effect, a Resource unto himself. With the right positioning, he can add two to three more damage dealt a turn. He doesn’t need line of fire to activate his ability, so you can keep him behind your heavy hitters. And with his Range extension, it’s possible (again, depending on a whole host of factors) that Wiz Kid will allow you to position your characters just out of reach of your opponent while still being able to attack, Outwit, Perplex and Prob opposing pieces, which is kind of the Holy Grail of board control strategies.

While his keywords kind of suck (Initiative and X-Factor, exactly the same as Title Character Deadpool), they’re not without options.

To wit:

Not this Nighthawk

Not this Nighthawk, although his costume is way cooler…

Team Name: Mercs and Mouths

Theme: Initiative

Roster:

DXF059B Wiz Kid25 Points

DXF060 Deadpool, Merc With a Mouth70 Points

equipped with  UXM057P Proteus — 35 Points

FFDXF010 Slapstick50 Points

NFAOS059A Nighthawk120 Points

= 300 Points

HOW IT PLAYS: 

(Incidentally, there’s also a pretty competitive and fun option for this Build that subs in X-Factor pieces for the Initiative pieces including Boom-Boom and the Super Rare Iceman broken-ness from UXM.)

Regardless, Wiz Kid’s presence here should have your characters regularly attacking with a 12 or 13 Attack Value and 3 or 4 Damage minimum.

Nighthawk himself has not just one Trait (NIGHT AND DAY: At the beginning of the game, an opponent chooses Night -or- Day. If they choose Night, modify Nighthawk’s combat values by +1. If they choose Day, modify the defense values of all characters by -1 unless they occupy hindering terrain or are friendly to Nighthawk.) but two (PUSHING THE DEFENDERS TO BE MORE PROACTIVE: Nighthawk and friendly characters that share a keyword with him may replace their attack value with the unmodified attack value of an adjacent friendly character sharing that same keyword.) that pair pretty nicely with Wiz Kid’s power.

(I actually think Nighthawk’s A-side is an overlooked gem, but this article is about Wiz Kid, so we’ll talk about Nighthawk in a different column.)

This team is EXTREMELY vulnerable to Energy Explosion, but should synergize well. And Slapstick is great for taking out annoying opposing support pieces (see his Honorable Mention entry above for more details).

WHY WIZ KID DOESN’T BELONG IN THE TOP TEN: 

For those taking the opposite view, just the mere fact that Wiz Kid is a Prime is a major bummer. This is a list of top Meta performers from the past year or so that you are unable to field (either in your army or as a Sideline piece) if you choose to use Wiz Kid:

FL053B Zoom (Black Lantern)

JLTW003B Doctor Light

JLTW037B Freddy Freeman

 AVAS013B 3-D Man

AVAS053B Ragnarok

NFAOS007B Peggy Carter

NFAOS059B Nighthawk

WF037B Nightlantern

WF053B Harlequin

UXM023B Kitty Pryde

UXM043B Sunfire

JW003B Anarky

JW053B Jakeem Thunder

That list is like a Meta All-Stars team. And that doesn’t even include Dreadpool or the Regen’ing Rare Prime Shifting Focus Deadpool. So yeah, using Wiz Kid as your Prime slot is a significant cost in and of itself.

Also, while Wiz Kid is almost like having a mobile Resource on the map with your team, he is also a highly KO-able Resource. And he requires you to play your team in an adjacency ball for his ability to work, which makes your build highly susceptible to Energy Explosion pieces.

Weasel in the last Deadpool set arguably did Wiz Kid’s tricks better (and added a limited Prob) for just two more measly points. He saw SOME Meta play, but not necessarily a ton. Is his past usage a good predictor of what Wiz Kid will do in the Meta? Hard to say…

Still, with a piece as divisive as this, I thought it best to remove him from the Top Ten list entirely and consider him separately from everyone else. I guess what you have to decide in the end is whether Wiz Kid a Top Ten piece, or a sucker’s bet? I happen to think he’s very useful on a very narrow set of teams, but only time will tell.

——————END OF INTERMISSION: FLASH FIGURE REVIEW #3: WIZ Kid!——————-

 

Fenris Comics

3. DXF049 Fenris — 60 Points — Super Rare:

Looking at their pedestrian stats (Running Shot with only 8 Speed; 9 Attack; wheee!!), you would not be faulted for being unimpressed with yet another low-costed, low-upside piece that yet again features two characters on one dial BUT NO FREAKING DUO ATTACK ABILITY [EDITOR’S NOTE: Seriously, why did that go away? I loved Duo Attack, you loved Duo Attack, everyone loves Duo Attack!!]!!

But then you look at their sole Special Ability (SHE IS THE POWER, I AM THE FOCUS: When Fenris make a range attack, modify their attack and damage values by +2 and choose one: damage dealt is penetrating or the attack causes knock back.) in their Attack slot, and you wonder if it’s too late to snag one for under $10 on eBay.

These folks are among the best Secondary Attackers in the game, and they only cost 60 Points. They even come with a 7 Range and Enhancement!!

They’ve already impacted the Meta at several ROC’s, and I expect that to only continue. And with their Hydra keyword, and all the Hydra figures from NFAOS, and the Hydra Cap Chase rumors in Avengers/Defenders War, I mean, there’s gotta be a really decent Hydra Build out there somewhere, right?

 

Deadpool on a Unicorn

By johnny bijos. Check his stuff out right here!

2. DXF069 Deadpool — 140 Points — Ultra Chase: 

Good Lord. Yeah, no one’s gonna want to track down an Ultra Chase if all it does is kick ass, ignore damage and chew bubble gum while making free close attacks, right?

Let’s dive in.

First, the sculpt is ridiculously awesome.

Second, this guy has Charge, Pen/Psy, Impervious and Exploit Weakness top dial. He has a Speed of 11, an Attack Value of 12, an 18 Defense and 4 native Damage. That Defense Special that grants Impervious (YOU HAVE NEVER SEEN ANYTHING SO AWESOME: Deadpool can use Impervious. Once per game, when Deadpool would take damage, you may choose that he takes no damage instead.) also lets you just decide once per game to ignore any attack of your choosing that actually lands.

Normally you’d be bummed about a piece with Charge and Pen/Psy since those two powers don’t work together, but here it feels more like Deadpool can just wreck face from anywhere on the map.

He also has Indomitable and Improved Targeting: Ignores Hindering Terrain and Improved Movement: Ignores Hindering Terrain, just in case you thought your 11 Speed Value sucked. Which it totally does not, by the way.

I mean, what other piece in the game allows this to happen:

Timmy, Power Gamer: “And… 11. I hit your Deadpool. For… 4 Damage.”

You: “Eh… nah. I’m not really feeling it.”

Timmy, Power Gamer: “What? You can’t just choose to not take damage when I hit you!”

You [holding up card]: “It turns out I can.”

Also, he makes free Close Attacks (THAT HORN JUST AIN’T FOR SHOW: At the beginning of your turn, if Deadpool has no action tokens, he can make a close attack using Blades/Claws/Fangs.), cuz that’s a thing he needed to be worth his points.

Well, at least you still need a lot of skill to play a piece like this. It’s not like you can just walk this Deadpool up to your opponent end, hit their best piece ONCE with your 12 Attack Value and then not have to worry about that piece for the rest of the game.

Oh, wait, that is EXACTLY what you can do (I’M HERE TO SPREAD JOY AND RAINBOWS: I’m Here To Spread Joy And Rainbows: When Deadpool hits an opposing character, after actions resolve, you can place the Rainbow Joy Marker on that character, removing it from anywhere else. A character with a Rainbow Joy Marker cannot attack Deadpool unless it is the only character on its force. At the beginning of its player’s turn, a character with a Rainbow Joy Marker can roll a d6: on a result of 5 or 6, they may remove the Rainbow Joy Marker.).

Unbelievable.

 

Venompool

1. DXF068 Venompool — 80 Points — Chase: 

Again, really, almost all of the Chases could’ve filled these slots, but Venompool here is the class of the bunch.

It’s not just that his sweet dial that features Sidestep, Poison, an 11 Attack with 4 Damage (and Exploit Weakness) and an 18 Defense with Super Senses.

It’s that you can take all that and add in an obnoxiously good Trait (RETCON EXPONGIFIER GUN: When an opposing character uses Probability Control, after actions resolve, that character cannot use Probability Control for the rest of the game.) to go along with any of the EIGHT Comic Panels on your sideline.

Does your opponent see through Stealth? No? Then boom, Venompool’s got Stealth. Oh, those long-range bombers can see through Stealth? Great. Now my Venompool has ES/D. And on and on.

Venompool is coming, folks. Venompool is coming.

 

Alright, that is the end of another Top Ten! Try as I might, I just couldn’t fit Shatterstar, Boom-Boom, Chase Pirate Deadpool and a host of others (still looking at you, Chipmunk Hunk. But not you, Koi Boy.).

But we will be taking a look at all the Shifting Focus Deadpools. Since they really need to be looked at as a whole, they will probably be at the center of our next Flash Figure Review!!

How’d we do? Agree? Disagree? Post your thoughts in the Comments below!

Until next time,

Stay Safe and Watch Where You Draw Your Lines of Fire!!

Upcoming Games: Heroclix: The Gathering: Month 3: Time Spiral!!

[EDITOR’S NOTE: This is the third in a quick series of local game announcements for SouthEast Michigan Clix’ers before we go back to our regular programming!! We’re running a Scenario called Heroclix: The Gathering, obviously inspired by the eternally popular CCG Magic: The Gathering. Each month is based–very loosely–off of an existing Magic expansion. We then weave everything together with an ever-evolving narrative that changes based on the results of our local tournaments. Think of this as a “What If” Magic: The Gathering story told through Heroclix! Read about the Month One posting here, and the Month Two scenario here!]

Time Spiral Two

 

HEROCLIX: THE GATHERING: MONTH TWO: NEW PHYREXIA!!

The Guildpact has been shattered. Szadek, Parun of the House Dimir, stands triumphant as the supreme leader of Ravnica. Long may he reign…

Except that his ascension and the fall of the Guildpact has attracted the attention of the predatory plane of New Phyrexia, who have opened portals to Ravnica in pursuit of conquest and resources. 

New Phyrexia invasion 2

As the Phyrexian legions pour in, the city of Ravnica is quickly overrun. The Boros Legion meets the Phyrexians head on, but their lines are quickly broken and Razia, their angleic Parun, is impaled with her own sword by the leader of the invasion, Praetor Sheoldred.

Razia Falls

But just as Phyrexian Compleation seems inevitable, Momir Vig, Simic Guildmaster, unveils his secret weapon:  Experiment Kraj, a gigantic, mutated Ooze. 

Kraj rolls through the City, absorbing Ravnican and Phyrexian alike, until the Phyrexian legions are left decimated and forced to retreat as the surviving Paruns regroup in the vast smoldering ruin of the Azorius Senate…

 

HEROCLIX: THE GATHERING: MONTH THREE: TIME SPIRAL!!

Day's Undoing

“I thought I might find you here.” Glissa the Traitor flicks her wrist, and behind her bursts a portal to New Phyrexia. 

The surviving Paruns react defensively, but Glissa waves them off. “Please,” she smiles, “I’ve not come to fight. I stand before you a humble ambassador.” Her eyes narrow ever so slightly. “With a message.”

“Then speak it and be gone.” The voice of Niv-Mizzet, the Firemind and Parun of the Izzet League boomed and echoed against the remains of the Senate Chamber.

Glissa 2

“You Ravnicans have done well to defeat our scouting party. Sheoldred in his arrogance believed your plane conquerable with just a tenth of our forces. But your oblivion will not be stopped. Compleation awaits this world,” Glissa takes a step into the portal. “And we will see you soon.”

For a moment, there was silence. Finally Szadek’s rage broke forth.

“We will not stand by and let our city be taken by such filth! I would tear the city of guilds apart before I see it fall to the twisted metal tendrils of New Phyrexia!”

Niv-Mizzet

A puff of fumes erupts from Niv-Mizzet. “And tear it apart you have, little vampire. But what would you do to stop them?”

Momir Vig steps forward. “Perhaps I am being overly analytical, but if The Traitor was being truthful about the size of the next invading force, then perhaps this is not a question of tactics, but one of numbers.”

Szadek directs his gaze to the Simic Guildmaster. “Explain.”

“Given the current state of our houses, not to mention that Boros is all but wiped out, we simply do not have enough warriors to mount anything but a token defense of our land.”

“Obviously. So what do you propose?”

Momir Vig 2

“There is a spell, Szadek. Old magick that predates even you. I doubt any but the ancient Firemind may remember its existence. But recently I encountered records of it in my research. It’s called a Time Twister, and if executed correctly, we could pull the greatest warriors of Ravnica’s established past and possible futures to fight for us in our current, well… present.”

“And if executed incorrectly?”

Niv-Mizzet shifts his weight and lowers his gaze to Vig. “If executed incorrectly, our world will be ripped from the multi-verse and experience temporal folding until we cease to exist. I remember this magick. I also remember why its practice was banned. It is dangerous beyond understanding.”

“Yes,” Vig replied, “but it may also be the only chance we have to survive.”

“Well then… ” Szadek smiled. “It seems we have some work to do.”

 

Okay!! Hello fellow Clixers, and welcome to Month Three of Heroclix: The Gathering, exclusiviely at Comics & More in Madison Heights, MI!! Month One ended with Roberto Ty piloting a House Dimir team to victory (with noted Spy Nick Fury standing in for Szadek!), which is why House Dimir came out on tops in our Month One recap story.

However, in Month Two, Matthew Wenderski used a Simic Combine squad to triumph over all comers (which is why Momir Vig saves the day in this month’s story!).

But the Phyrexian war machine will not be denied, so the Ravnican Paruns have turned to some dangerous magick! The Past and the Future are merging in the present, so you know what that means. It’s time for:

The Game: Heroclix: The Gathering: Month 3: Time Spiral!

The Build: 500 Points (an even bigger conflict means even bigger armies!!), GOLDEN AGE, No Tactics (No Resources, ATA’s or Relics.)

(Since time itself is being ripped open and the past is once again present, this game is now GOLDEN AGE!!)

No figure larger than a peanut base. No Call-Ins.

Possession pieces are okay to play. (Basically the Heroclix version of an Aura Enchantment, right?)

You must choose a Guild or other faction from the chart below. Once you’ve chosen, your army must be built around the generic keyword pairings associated with that Guild or faction. This means that everyone on your force must have at least ONE of the two generic keywords listed.

All characters friendly to your force can use the associated Guild Team Ability (GTA) or Faction Team Ability (FTA).

NOTE: After the sundering of the Guildpact, the Guild Team Abilities are all your figures have to fall back on. This means that ANY OTHER TEAM ABILITY POSSESSED BY YOUR PIECES CANNOT BE USED. Note that characters still POSSESS whatever Team Abilities are printed on their base and card; they just cannot USE them.

And that’s not the only change. Some of the Guilds have had to adapt to their changing environment to survive. And another Guild didn’t make it out of Month Two…

 

List of Ravnica Guilds (Guild descriptions provided by MTGSalvation.com):

 

azorius

AZORIUS SENATE

The Azorius Senate functions as the government of Ravnica and creates Ravnican laws.

Keywords:  PoliticianRuler

Azorius Senate Team AbilityAt the beginning of the game, place an Immunity token on the character card of one character with the highest point value of those using this team ability. When a character with an Immunity token is within 8 squares of an opposing character’s starting area and is dealt damage, it may be given an action token to remove the Immunity token from its card and ignore the damage dealt. When a character with the Immunity token on its card is KO’d, you may place the Immunity token on the card of the remaining character on your force that is the highest point character that can use the team ability.

GAMEPLAY NOTES: The Azorius Senate was all but destroyed following the events of Month One. Their leader, Augustin IV was murdered and their guild hall was decimated. They are still rebuilding. Therefore, the Azorius Senate MAY NOT BE CHOSEN for Month Three builds.

 

boros-legion

BOROS LEGION

Ravnica’s security force, the Boros Legion is both Ravnica’s constabulary and standing army. Their numbers will be sorely tested when the New Phryexians invade…

Keywords:  Police, Soldier

Boros Legion Team AbilityWhen a character using this Team Ability is adjacent to a friendly character making a ranged combat attack, modify the target’s defense value by -1 if the target is within line of fire of this character.

GAMEPLAY NOTES: The Boros Legion lost its Parun in Month Two and its morale and numbers have been decimated. The Boros Legion may NOT be chosen for Month Three.

 

house-dimir

HOUSE DIMIR

In practice, little information on the Dimir is known. It is, however, known that the Dimir are involved in assassinations, criminal activity, and espionage on a contractual basis.

Szadek has led his House to victory, but the celebration is short lived. Even if he can muster enough strength to repel the invaders, the other guilds may use this new conflict as an opportunity to take back what was taken from them. 

While subtlety will always be the primary tactic of House Dimir, the time has come to step out from the shadows and remind everyone why they should be afraid of what stirs in the night…

Keywords:  Spy, Assassin

House Dimir Team Ability: A character using this team ability can’t have their defense power countered if they occupy the lowest elevation of terrain.

GAMEPLAY NOTES: The House Dimir Team Ability has not changed since its revision in Month Two. While their presence in the shadows of Ravnica is now common knowledge, they are still very hard to deal with if encountered on their home turf–Ravnica’s sewers and Underbelly…

 

golgari-swarm

GOLGARI SWARM

Denizens of Ravnica’s agricultural and waste management sectors. Run by Gorgon sisters. And creepy fungal sewer monsters.

Keywords: Monster, Assassin

Golgari Swarm Team Ability: Characters using this team ability can use Stealth on their starting click. If that character can already use Stealth on their starting click, lines of fire may not be drawn to that character by opposing characters while on that click.

GAMEPLAY NOTES: No change to Golgari Swarm.

 

gruul-clans

GRUUL CLANS

Ravnica’s foresters, gamekeepers, park rangers, wildlife officers, and wildskeepers. But with the wilds declining, the role of the Clans has also diminished, and many Gruul Clans members have adopted an anarcho-primitivist ideology and become Ravnica’s defenders of nature, intent on destroying civilization.

Keywords: Animal, Brute

Gruul Clans Team AbilityAll successful attacks made by a character using this Team Ability generate knock back. Knock back generated by a character using this Team Ability cannot be ignored.

GAMEPLAY NOTES: No change to Gruul Clans.

 

izzet-league

IZZET LEAGUE

Ravnica’s formative and physical scientists and engineers. The Izzet League are known to perform magical experiments, ever with reckless abandon and sometimes with spectacular but severe results.

Keywords: Scientist, Mystical 

Izzet League Team AbilityWhen a character using the Izzet League Team Ability takes damage from an attack, roll a d6 that can’t be rerolled and consult the chart below for the resulting effect.

1: This character takes 1 additional unavoidable damage and gets an action token after actions resolve.

2: This character takes 1 additional unavoidable damage.

3-4: The attacker is dealt 1 unavoidable damage.

5: The attacker is dealt 1 unavoidable damage and gets an additional action token after actions resolve (if able).

6: The attacker is dealt 2 unavoidable damage.

GAMEPLAY NOTES: No change to Izzet League. Once normal Mystics was turned off, this GTA worked extremely well (instead of being EXTREMELY overpowered).

 

orzhov-syndicate

ORZHOV SYNDICATE

Nearly every business in Ravnica ties back to the Orzhov in some devious way or another. Whilst they bear the facade of a religious group and may well have been a true faith at the signing of the Guildpact, they now worship only profit and power.

Keywords: Mystical, Politician

Orzhov Syndicate Team AbilityCharacters using this Team Ability can’t be the target of an opponent’s Outwit or Perplex unless they’ve been targeted with an attack previously in the same turn.

GAMEPLAY NOTES: No change to Orzhov.

 

rakdos

CULT OF RAKDOS

Founded by Parun Rakdos, an ancient demon, the Cult of Rakdos attend to menial labor and the services industry, which includes some less-than-savory offerings, such as assassination, as well as more agreeable ones, such as the catering (i.e., food service) and entertainment industries.

Using the strife of the end of the Guildpact as a distraction, acolytes of Rakdos have finally managed to raise their Parun from the depths of darkness and despair. But will Rakdos choose to fight the invaders or decide to use this opportunity to thwart Szadek and seize Ravnica for his own?

Keywords: Monster, Mystical

Cult of Rakdos Team AbilityWhenever a character using this team ability is KO’d, you may roll a d6 and subtract 2 (minimum 1). Deal that much damage, divided as you choose, among any number of opposing characters adjacent to the square the KO’d character occupied.

GAMEPLAY NOTES: No change to the Team Ability, but please note that the return of the demon Rakdos has slightly altered the Cult of Rakdos keywords. Now a character must have either the Monster or Mystical keyword to be eligible for the Cult of Rakdos (I mean, they just awakened their demon overlord, so, yeah… )

 

selesnya-conclave

SELESNYA CONCLAVE

Despite their superficial appearance of being a “good” and “peace-loving”, in truth the guild is just as hypocritical and as sinister, if not more so, as other Ravnican guilds. The Selesnya Conclave often employs its quietmen and other members to silence the civilians of Ravnica from up close and wreak havoc.

Keywords: Brute, Spy

Selesnya Conclave Team AbilityWhen characters using this Team Ability roll doubles on a successful close attack roll, that attack generates no knock back; instead, that attack cannot be evaded, damage dealt can’t be reduced below 1 and any hit characters get an action token.

GAMEPLAY NOTES: No change from Month 2.

 

simic-combine

SIMIC COMBINE

The original purpose of the Simic Combine was to preserve the health of all Ravnican life-forms. They were devoted to the study of life, medicines, and biomancy. But just as life can adapt, so did the Combine. Momir Vig, the Simic guildmaster, was dissatisfied with this original purpose and formed a new purpose: to improve upon life-forms of Ravnica.

Keywords: Animal, Scientist

Simic Combine Team Ability: At the beginning of your turn, choose one option to last until the end of your turn for all friendly characters using this Team Ability. All friendly characters using this Team Ability ignore Shape Change; or all friendly characters using this Team Ability ignore Stealth this turn.

GAMEPLAY NOTES: The Month 2 change helped this Guild quite a bit (indeed, both players in the Championship game were playing Simic), so it will stay as is for now.

 

phryexian-mana

NEW PHYREXIA

It came not in the form of a noble struggle, a fair contest of warriors clashing will against will, but as a wave of unstoppable slaughter. Mirran partisans resisted bravely, using their wits and magic to fend off the onslaught that originated from inside their own world. But their efforts were for naught. Phyrexia is victorious. Mirrodin now goes by a different name: New Phyrexia.

And New Phyrexia hungers…

Keywords: Robot, Armor

New Phyrexia Team Ability: Characters using this team ability can use Perplex, but only to target a character with the Armor or Robot keyword. This use of Perplex may not modify damage values, and no character may be targeted by this ability more than twice per turn. This use is in addition to any other uses of Perplex.

GAMEPLAY NOTES: No changes to the unstoppable New Phyrexia faction. They were a popular choice as well last Month.

 

Time Spiral logo

TIME SPIRAL

From Ravnica’s forged Past to its many posssible Futures come the warriors caught in the Time Spiral. But even if they are able to turn the tide of the war with New Phyrexia, what will become of them once the invasion is over? And if the sundering of the Guildpact awakened the interest of New Phyrexia, whose attention might the spiraling of time itself attract?

Keywords: Past, Future

Time Spiral Team Ability: Characters using this Team Ability may use
Probability Control. When a roll is ignored because of this
team ability an action token must be placed on a friendly
character on the battlefield or the roll is not ignored.

GAMEPLAY NOTES: The latest faction to join the fight, the time-displaced warriors of Ravnica come packed with the ability to manipulate time themselves…

 

Alright! There is your Month 3 Scenario! Hope to see everyone at the game!

Coming Up Next-er!! (Or, A Look at the Rest of Your Year!! Part 2: Wonder Woman, HorrorClix, ATA Rotations and More!!)

[EDITOR’S NOTE: So, Preview Week was blown out by what was pretty much Southeastern Michigan’s worst windstorm in, well, a long time. I mean, we’ve had tornadoes come through and do less structural damage. It was insane. But, that said, we are trying again this week with a look at what’s coming up for Heroclix fans for the rest of the year. In Part 1, we took a look at the upcoming Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 set.]

Wonder Woman 2.jpg

Welcome back!

We’re gonna cover a few upcoming Gravity Feed releases in about half the space as yesterday’s look at the new GotG Vol. 2 set, and for good reason.

We know next to nothing about either of them.

Wonder Woman

WONDER WOMAN: 

What We Know:

Precious little. This SHOULD release in May of this year, although no exact date has been selected. It’s meant to coincide with Wonder Woman’s 75th Anniversary, and will probably be comic-based.

Unless it isn’t. In which case it may or may not be based on the movie that comes out on June 2nd.

We do know that the set is expected to have 16 total figures split between a Mass Market (Target) version and a Core Hobby (Comic Shop) edition, with 8 Commons across both and 4 exclusive Rare figures for each.

That’s about it for what we know.

What We Think We Know:

Uh… it revolves around Wonder Woman? Oh, and unlike Guardians, there probably won’t be any Chases.

It is actually astounding how LITTLE we know of this set, considering how imminent its release is. Some have said it’s actually going to vaguely tie in with the Wonder Woman movie. Some think it will revolve around a specific classic Wonder Woman story.

What We’re Guessing:

While either is possible, it seems at this point more likely that it will be a sort of “greatest hits” of characters from Wonder Woman’s 75-year history.

But we’ll have to wait til May to find out.

 

Hollywood Undead.jpg

HOLLYWOOD HEROCLIX: UNDEAD:

What We Know:

In June, it’s the return of HorrorClix… kind of!! 19 new figures in a Gravity Feed, running the horror gamut from generic ghosts, werewolves and demons to specific public domain scary folk like Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde.

The figure breakdown is 9 Commons, 8 Rares and 2 Chases.

What We Don’t Know:

There’s one main thing we don’t know for sure about this set: Will it be Modern Age? That’s the major question remaining about this set. If it is, I’d expect sales to be fairly steady. If not, this will end up on the same scrap heap as Kick-Ass 2.

What We’re Guessing:

I can’t imagine Wizkids releasing a non-Modern Age Gravity right in the middle of their 15th Anniversary summer, so I’m gonna guess that this will be Modern Age AND Modern Age relevant. Don’t sleep on the Undead!

 

Heroclix Rules

Finally, let’s talk about the 2017 Rotations!

In addition to the all the sets rotating, Wizkids is dumping the ATA mechanic. As of June, all ATA’s will be Golden Age, and there are no plans to ever create more.

Or will there be?

Even though ATA’s as a mechanic are technically going away, to be honest, it feels more like they’re morphing.

As we’ve seen in the most recent Deadpool set, Wizkids is essentially keeping ATA’s around as static Traits that are common to a large portion of figures with a certain keyword (for example, many of the new X-Force pieces in Deadpool & X-Force have a Trait simply called “X-Force” that grants Stealth; Age of Ultron featured several characters with the “Mighty Avengers” Trait; etc.).

While I kind of like this idea, I want to see them take this mechanic even further, or even require Theme to activate, which would give greater incentive to play Themed Teams.

For example, an ATA Trait could read something like this:

“Themed Team–X-Force: If Cable is part of an X-Force Themed Team, he can use Stealth.”

Or you could even keep X-Force the way it is, but use Themed Teams to boost certain individual members, like so:

“Themed Team–X-Force: Cable can use Stealth. If he is part of an X-Force Themed Team, he can use also use Leadership, but he can only use it to remove tokens from characters with the X-Force keyword.” And so on.

So what do you guys think? Are you excited for Wonder Woman or Undead? What do you think about the (supposed) end of ATA’s?

Sound off in the Comments below! And keep an eye on this space for the next Preview article, the Deadpool & X-Force Top Ten AND the scenario for Month 3 of Heroclix: The Gathering!!

Coming Up Next… (Or, A Look at the Rest of Your Year!! Part 1: GOTGV2!!)

[EDITOR’S NOTE: Wizkids dropped a bomb on 03/22/2017 with a Preview of one of the Chases from this set! See the end of this article for updated details!]

Coming Up Next

Okay!! So, Preview Week was kind of washed out by a statewide wind disaster that kind of wiped out every power line in Michigan.

We’re still gonna cover the Deadpool & X-Force set with a couple of Top Ten lists. In the meantime, let’s take a look at what we know about the rest of the year’s releases!!

This post will be dedicated to the next Heroclix movie set–Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2!!

Baby Groot Button

GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY VOL. 2:

What We Know:

This will be a Gravity Feed set based around the May 5th, 2017 sequel of the same name. According to the Wizkids solicit, there will be both a Core Hobby feed AND a Mass Market version. And… they seem to be bringing back movie Chases (which I REALLY missed in BvS and Civil War!).

So, if my math is correct, there are 6 static Commons (found in both the Core Hobby AND Mass Market editions);  4 Rares exclusive to each version; and 1 Chase exclusive to each version, for a grand total of 16 separate figures in the Gravity Feed set (not sure if we’re getting a Starter like last time or not).

Based on already released previews, we know for sure we’re getting:

GOTGV2004 Star-Lord70 PointsCommon:

Star-Lord GOTGV2 Common

GOTGV2005 Drax75 PointsCommon:

Drax GOTGV2

GOTGV2013 Star-Lord90 PointsRare:

Star-Lord GOTGV2 Rare

Incidentally, I REALLY like that 90 Point Star-Lord. Hypersonic, EE + Precision Strike AND all his attacks cause Knock Back?! Sign me up!!

Gama GOTG.jpg

Based on the other photos/art on the Wizkids solicit (and GAMA 2017 photos floating around the internet like the one above), I think it’s safe to say we’ll also be getting Common versions of:

–Baby Groot

–Rocket Raccoon

–Gamora

No surprises there.

What We Don’t Know:

GOTG Box art

The other side of the box shows us sculpts for Yondu, some blue-clad masked figure, a Rocket & Baby Groot Duo (possibly a Chase; almost certainly at least a Rare) and a Ravager. The other side of the box seems so show another Yondu (Common and Rare versions maybe?), some alien dude, possibly Ayesha (although your guess is as good as mine) and the Rare Star-Lord that was just previewed.

Gotg Gravity Feed Side 2

What We’re Guessing:

There almost HAS to be a new Nebula in this set, right? Probably a Rare. I would not be surprised if there’s a generic Nova Corps member or two, possibly Denarian Dey, possibly a new Nova Prime, who knows? And I’d be flabbergasted if there’s no Mantis.

I’m thinking that Rocket/Baby Groot Duo is a Chase. There could also be a Rare or Chase Ego, the Living Planet (since his appearance in the movie in the form of Kurt Russell is not a secret and should be eligible for Clixing).

Hell, even though the producers have said he’s not in the movie, I would not be terribly shocked if we got a Rare or Chase Thanos from the first movie (in fact I would be psyched, but I don’t think it’s gonna happen).

Will we get a Simon Williams or a Taserface or a Tullk (courtesy of Nathan Fillion’s and Chris Sullivan’s and Tommy Flanagan’s mysteriously as-yet-unrevealed characters)? Impossible to say.

Still, I guess we’ll see when this set drops in one month in April!!

*********************************************************************

03/22/2017 UPDATE!!!

*********************************************************************

Annnnd, there will definitely be Chases in this set, as WizKids just previewed one!

GOTGV2016 Yondu100 PointsChase:

Yondu Chase

Wowza!! Now that is a good way to spend 100 Points. For the price of a Secondary Attacker, you get the potential to attack pretty much every Stealth-less character on your opponent’s side of the board for 2 Damage (which can’t be reduced below 1)!

If you’re playing him with Pandora’s Box, adding Willpower and Combat Reflexes means you can do that every turn without taking pushing damage and you really don’t care if your opponent bases you, since you can start your chain by shooting at adjacent characters via his Improved Targeting (and your Defense would be a 19 for any close counter attack)!

And with this version of Yondu gifted with the Guardians of the Galaxy keyword, you can even grant him the GotG ATA for an extra 4 Points and make him immune to Outwit!

Expect some shenanigans with this guy real soon.

***********************************************************************

And coming in our next look ahead, we’ll guess what’s coming in the new Wonder Woman Gravity Feed set!!

Until Then, Stay Safe and Watch Where You Draw Your Lines of Fire!!

So About That Blackout…

Blackout

Nope. Not this Blackout.

Okay!! Some quick housekeeping here. Preview Week was kinda interrupted by about a million folks here in Michigan losing power for days on end (including yours truly), which REALLY pushed back our schedule.

So here’s where we are:

–The final Deadpool & X-Force Preview article should drop by Tuesday night.

–Ninwashui is hard at work on his DXF Top Ten; hopefully that will be published by the end of this week.

–I am also working on my DXF Top Ten Second Opinion, which will obviously be better than Ninwashui’s original article. Probably about 10-14 days away from publishing that though.

–For those who have been tracking our Heroclix: The Gathering series and are awaiting Month 3’s Scenario, that has been pushed back a couple weeks to March 29th (it was originally scheduled for March 15th).

–We’re also cooking up some Build articles and some other general nonsense, but we have nothing else to announce juuuuusssst yet.

 

Finally, I want to give a big shout out to all the lineman and electrical workers who have been trying to restore everyone’s power for the last four days. It hasn’t been easy on anyone, but we will all make it work!

And to our readers, we hope anyone affected by this blackout is (or will soon be) safe and warm and in a house or apartment that has plenty of power!

Until next time,

Stay Safe, and Watch Where You Draw Your Lines of Fire!!

Welcome to Preview Week, Part 2!!

[EDITOR’S NOTE: Welcome to our first ever Preview Week, which is devoted to–you guessed it–Previews!! With Deadpool and X-Force dropping in one week, we’re gonna devote the next five days to taking a look at what’s gonna be coming our way this year–from DXF and beyond! Part 1 dropped two days ago and can be found here.]

Today we take a look at some of the interesting Rares and Super Rares from DXF!

[EDITOR’S NOTE: There’s just so much to talk about with the Rares that we’re gonna save Super Rares and Primes for tomorrow, followed by Chases and beyond in Part 4!]

Without further ado…

RARES:

deadpool-bathrobe

DXF034A-C Deadpool75 PointsRare: Wow–Deadpool in an ultra-supporty role? Whaa… ? Yup–it’s true. All three versions of this “Shifting Focus” sculpt have the same powers. They only differ in their main named Keyword and which Keyword their powers affect.

But they will all give you 4 Range, 3 Damage top dial, Phasing/Teleport, a limited Prob, a limited DOUBLE PERPLEX and Defend. And yes, you can shift to him AFTER making a ranged or close attack with some of his more offensive versions, then use his double Perp and Prob on his teammates. Awesomesauce.

 

Howard the Defender Duck.jpg

DXF035 Howard the Duck50 PointsRare: Look, everyone loves Howard the Duck, but there’s just not a ton to work with here. Sidestep, Stealth, minimal Damage Output and a Special Damage Power (We Can Do This the Wrong Way, or My Way!: At the beginning of your turn, choose a standard power that an adjacent friendly character can use. Until your next turn, all characters within 6 squares and line of fire of Howard the Duck can’t use the chosen power.) that might hurt you as much as it hurts your opponent, especially since ONE OF YOUR CHARACTERS HAS TO ALREADY HAVE THE POWER YOU WANT TO DISALLOW!!

He picks up a decent Incapacitate Special in the middle of his dial (Fowl-Mouthed!: Howard the Duck can use Incapacitate. When he does, he may target all adjacent opposing characters.), but it’s not enough to save this piece.

 

squirrel-girl

DXF039 Squirrel Girl85 PointsRare: A close combat machine who is also a token generator, Squirrel Girl becomes more of a problem for your opponent as the game goes on.

With her first Trait (Chuk Chitty Chit Chit Chkk!: Give Squirrel Girl a free action when she has one action token and place a Squirrel bystander adjacent.), she can generate her own tie-up supporting figs and her third Trait (Fighting Squirrel Man!: Give Squirrel Girl a free action if there are 6 Squirrel bystanders on the map. Replace them with a Squirrel Man bystander in one of their squares.) lets her bring in what is essentially another Secondary Attacker (Squirrel Man).

 

boom_boom.jpg

DXF042 Boom-Boom — 60 Points — Rare: Running Shot mixed with an absolutely AWESOME Attack Special (3,2,1… Boom!: Boom-Boom can use Energy Explosion and Penetrating/Psychic Blast. When she makes a range attack and has no action tokens, modify her attack and damage values by +1.) makes Boom-Boom an extremely efficient Secondary Attacker.

 

Shatterstar.jpg

DXF044 Shatterstar60 PointsRare: Basically the close combat version of the Boom-Boom I just mentioned. He has Traited Sidestep and Toughness, and his Attack Special (Twin Blades: Shatterstar can use Blades/Claws/Fangs. When he does, once per turn he may reroll the d6.) lets him essentially Prob his Blades roll.

I would definitely say there’s some dark horse Meta potential with both Boom-Boom and Shatterstar as they’re both Secondary Attackers for Tertiary Attacker prices.

 

doop-mjolnirs

DXF046 Doop90 or 35 PointsRare: I just played him at his 35 Point level at a Sealed last night and he was great. His Trait is long and wordy:

The Unimaginable Power of Doop: Give Doop a power action. Roll a d6 that can only be rerolled once per turn by removing a Headline token from him.
1-2 Moving Between Panels: Place Doop and all adjacent characters into any square adjacent to themselves.
3-4 Doop Space: All characters within 4 squares are placed adjacent to Doop.
5 Gleaming The Cosmic Cube: Choose a friendly character and it can use the Power Cosmic team ability until your next turn.
6 Hailstorm of Mjolnirs: Doop makes a range attack with a range value of 10 and Targeting: OO>. Instead of normal damage, each hit character and each character adjacent to 1 or more hit characters is dealt 3 damage.

And it’s totally usable at either point level. At 35 Points, he still comes with Sidestep, Invincible and Prob, which makes him nearly indispensable in a Sealed environment. In the Meta, I still prefer Spectre on his Tower Click for the same 35 Points, but it’s close, and Doop doesn’t break Theme on X-Force or X-Statix Builds.

The Con Exclusive is still better, but the more I play this Doop, the more useful he becomes.

 

Okay! That’s all our time for today, but keep watching this space for some standout Super Rares, Primes, Chases and more as we Preview the Deadpool & X-Force set–and beyond during Preview Week!

 

And finally, I want to once again give special thanks to Wizkids, Scott Porter, all the eagle-eyed folks in the HCRealms.com community (especially Jaysol for putting everything there together), the good people at Married With Clix and everyone else who’s helped spoil this set. This article wouldn’t have been possible without all of their hard work. 

Welcome to Preview Week, PART 1!! (Or, Everything We Currently Know About Deadpool And X-Force: CUR Edition!!)

x-force

[EDITOR’S NOTE: Welcome to our first ever Preview Week, which is devoted to–you guessed it–Previews!! With Deadpool and X-Force dropping in one week, we’re gonna devote the next five days to taking a look at what’s gonna be coming our way this year!]

Happy February!!

While we’re waiting on a Shredder’s Return Top 10 and a Build article from Ninwashui, I figured it was time to take a look at what we know about the first full set of 2017!!

That’s right! Deadpool & X-Force is coming to a FLGS near you in just THREE days! But there’s already a ton of information about this set out there on the interwebs, so if you know where to look, you can start evaluating the set right now!

Today we’re going to look at some of the Common and Uncommon figs that we know will be in this set.Tomorrow we’ll evaluate the Rares and SR’s, and finally, on Wednesday, we’ll look at the Chases and Primes. But before we do any of that, let’s run down what we know about the set’s Themes, Sub-Themes, Mechanics and Notes in a little feature I like to call…

THEMES, SUB-THEMES, MECHANICS AND NOTES:

Captain Comics

–Sure, X-Force shows up quite a bit in this set, but this roster is all about the Merc With a Mouth. I think there are more versions of Deadpool in this set than any titular character from ANY previous set. Current estimates place the number of versions of Deadpool in the main set at approximately NINETEEN and counting.

And that DOESN’T include any Fast Forces versions.

So, if you’re one of the few who doesn’t like Deadpool… uh, sorry. But if you love you some Deadpool, good Lord, is this ever the set for you!!

shifting-focus

–Speaking of Deadpool, the “Shifting Focus” mechanic has finally come to Marvel Heroclix, and Deadpool is the star! This set is stuffed to the gills with Deadpools capable of shifting on and off the Battlefield–my God, there’s even a Prime that has the Trait! We’ll be looking at some of those today.

deadpool-title-character

–There is a new “Title Character” Mechanic that debuts with this set. It’s the Heroclix equivalent of Planeswalkers in Magic: The Gathering, and we’ll look more closely at that piece tomorrow (being that it’s a Super Rare).

marvel-team-abilities

–This set also sees a return/continuation of Team Traits. Wizkids will do this from time to time. Basically, a Team Trait is a Trait that is shared by most (though usually not all) members of a team or group from the comics. In Age of Ultron, for example, many of the Mighty Avengers had a special Mighty Avengers Trait even though they just had the Avengers keyword.

In the case of this set, many of the characters who have appeared in the comics as members of X-Force get the X-Force Trait (X-Force: [Insert name of character] can use Stealth.).

It’s essentially a way for Wizkids to add more Team Abilities to the game without having to actually add more Team Abilities. And stuff.

x-statix

–The X-Statix are finally here! Uh… yay? Outside of Doop, who is unarguably awesome, I can’t say I’m too excited as I never really liked any of the other characters in the comic. But I’m sure there are some Mike Allred fans out there who are just digging it!

Alright! Enough Jibber Jabber!! Let’s take a critical look at some of the notable Commons, Uncommons and Rares!

COMMONS:

 

deadpool

 DXF001 Deadpool75 PointsCommon: Our first “Shifting Focus” Deadpool, this guy offers an 11 Attack Value with an Attack Special (No Sharper Than A Serpent’s Tooth. A Sword.: Deadpool can use Blades/Claws/Fangs. When he does, the minimum result for his D6 roll is his printed damage value.) that essentially makes him a human Ginsu knife. Top dial he sports an 18 Defense Value WITH Combat Reflexes, so this is the Deadpool you want to shift to if you find yourself needing a Close Combat killer. As we’ll shortly see, the amount of situational versatility you get with these “Shifting Focus” 75 Point Deadpool pieces is pretty insane.

 

Wolvie X-Force.jpg

DXF002 Wolverine70 PointsCommon: Nine Clicks for 70 Points seems like a bargain, especially combined with Stealth and dial-long B/C/F. However, with no move and attack on his own, he needs to be paired with some early game TK… and even then, he may still need some help getting to his target.

His lone Special (Wolverine can use Regeneration as a free action. Give Wolverine a free action and roll a d6. One time this turn, he can use that result instead of rolling for Blades/Claws/Fangs or Regeneration.) is great, except that it doesn’t come around until he’s already taken SIX Clicks of damage.

And even though he has the X-Force keyword, he does not have the X-Force Trait, which means that his Stealth takes up his Movement slot for most of his dial.

Essentially, this Wolvy is going to need a lot of help if he’s ever gonna get to show us why he’s the best there is at what he does.

 

madcap

DXF004B Madcap — 100 PointsCommon: Easily damaged, but not easily KO’d. His recovery Trait (Instant Healing: When Madcap takes damage, after actions resolve roll a d6 and heal Madcap half of the result.) is hella useful as is the Poison and Perplex that he picks up on his second Click.

At 100 Points, he’s expensive, but he can also wreck your opponent’s plans, too.

 

Tippy Toe.jpg

DXF010 Tippy-Toe25 PointsCommon:

More than just a tie-up piece, Tippy Toe has an Attack Special (Squirrel Talk: Give Tippy-Toe a free action to deal 1 damage to an opposing character within 8 squares and line of fire that occupies printed hindering terrain.) that can be REALLY annoying on the right map. Any ability that deals damage without needing to roll a die is a good ability, no matter how situational it is.

A high Defense Value coupled with Super Senses and Exploit Weakness down dial make Tippy-To well worth the points.

 

cable-dxf

DXF014 Cable120 PointsCommon: Wow!! You usually don’t see this many Traits/Special Abilities on a Common nowadays, but Cable is great!

Traited Stealth, a move-and-attack Movement Special that utilizes Phasing, Pen/Psy, Probability Control AND a native 4 Damage? Sign me up?

This is a great piece that will probably crack my Top Ten list!

 

deadpool-uncommon

DXF017 Deadpool75 PointsUncommon: Another “Shifting Focus” piece, this is Deadpool with a sniper rifle, so he has Pen/Psy and Energy Shield/Deflection. Think someone is gonna shoot at your Deadpool ? Shift to this version and all of the sudden they have to hit a 19  or 20 Defense.

This is a wonderful piece to have on your sideline.

 

feral

DXF029 Feral60 PointsUncommon: Feral! We finally have a Feral, after all this time! And for 60 Points, she’s not bad at all for a Close Combat piece. Not great, but nowhere near the worst piece of the set.

 

Alright!! Let’s meet back here tomorrow and take a look at the Rares and Super Rares!!

 

And finally, I want to give special thanks to Wizkids, Scott Porter, all the eagle-eyed folks in the HCRealms.com community (especially Jaysol for putting everything there together), the good people at Married With Clix and everyone else who’s helped spoil this set. This article wouldn’t have been possible without all of their hard work.