All Shall Bow before Doom (or a top ten set review of the Heroclix Fantastic Four set)

Here are the honorable mentions:

5. F4027 Valeria Richards (40 Points) – She’s a key support figure if you are going to run a Fantastic four team. Her attack special reads, “LET’S SEE, WHAT CAN I MAKE WITH THIS?: FREE: Choose a standard attack power. Valeria Richards can use that power this turn.” Which means she can pick a power like TK one turn and then the next turn choose Pulse wave. Add to that her double Perplex and she is a must have uncommon from this set.

4. F4039 Franklin Richards (65 points) – Franklin is kinda a mix between WXM038 Legion (Whom I used to really enjoy playing) and EW017 Green Lantern (The power battery is draining). Just like those guys he can gain any power, but there is a serious drawback. His Special attack power reads “EVERYTIME I USE MY POWERS, I GET CLOSER TO LOSING THEM: FREE: Choose 3 standard powers. Franklin Richards can use the chosen powers until your next turn. // At the end of your turn, if Franklin Richards activated this power or made an attack, roll a d6. Deal him unavoidable damage equal to half the result.” So you won’t be picking powers every turn, but if you pick and choose your turns carefully, you will get way more that 65 points worth of value from him. His stats and incredible 11 click dial length further increase his value. As does his ability to grant the Power Cosmic TA to all Fantastic Four figures within 4 squares. Smart Players are really going to be able to abuse this guy.

3. F4048 Karnak (40 points) – The Inhumans are back and this guy is going to try to put them into the competitive scene. Combined with a taxi like ABPI059 Lockjaw he can outwit the most stubborn of defenses. His special damage power reads,
IN EVERYTHING, A WEAKNESS: Close Combat Expert, Outwit. When Karnak has no action tokens and uses Outwit, adjacent opposing characters can’t use Protected: Outwit or PROTECTED: Outwit until your next turn.” Combine him with the aforementioned lockjaw and ABPI030 Medusa to make a great one-two punch.

2. F4055E Agent Venom (50 or 75 points) – Whether you run this guy at 50 or 75 points really depends on the rest of your team. Both are good options. From the moment he was previewed players have been going nuts over his trait, “CALL IN HELP FROM… ME!: Once per turn, when another friendly character that shares a keyword with Agent Venom hits, after resolutions you may roll a d6. 3-6: Place Agent Venom adjacent to a hit opposing character.” Add to that the usual Symbiote tricks (Plasticity, Shape Change) and his ability to grant shape change to others at 75 points or his Perplex/BCF combo at 50 points. 

1. F4054 Wolverine (75 points) – A very offensive minded Wolverine that has Flurry and BCF on every click. He starts with a movement special that states, “BLOODTHIRSTY BARRAGE: Charge, Flurry, Sidestep. // When Wolverine KO’s an opposing character, after resolutions remove an action token from him.” He also makes a decent taxi with his sidestep and THE NEW FANTASTIC FOUR trait that grants him Passenger:1. On defense he starts with 18 toughness and a trait that will ensure he remains a threat all game as long as you still have fantastic four pieces on the board. It reads, “I DON’T STAY DOWN EASY: When Wolverine would be KO’d except by this Trait, instead put him on this card with 4 Healing tokens. At the beginning of your turn, remove a Healing token. When you remove the last one, place him on the map on click #6 within 4 squares of a friendly character with the Fantastic Four keyword. If you can’t, KO him. Protected: Pulse Wave.” It’s worth noting that click 6 for Wolverine has 12 attack to go along with his BCF and Flurry. So if you can get him to come back into play next to an opposing figure, that figure is in for a world of hurt.

Here’s the Top Ten:

 

10. F4053B Ghost Rider (40 points) – This is as mean of a 40 point dial as you will ever see. Alejandra has a starting click most other 40 point characters could only dream of. Hypersonic Speed, precision strike,  Invulnerability,  probability control, and Indomitable mesh well with her better than average stats. Her dial is short at 3 clicks, but her stop click and healing from steal energy will make the dial feel longer. The Mystics TA will mean that the very least the opponent will receive some vengeance for attacking her. Add to that her unusual Retaliation trait and you get a lot for very little point investment.

9. F4047A Silver Surfer (150 points) – I’ve seen him played on competitive teams at 75 points, but I think he has what it takes to to be played as a full 150 point Primary attacker. I know I’ve said that 150 points is a lot to pay for a single character in a 300 point build (like when I talked about CAAV074 Ultron), but I think the Surfer has everything he needs to be successful at that point cost. He has the Power Cosmic TA, Hypersonic Speed on every click, lots of damage reducers, and a 9 click long dial. His damage values are a little low for a 150 point character, but that’s where Dawn Greenwood helps. She is a free bystander the Surfer gets at the start of the game that has both enhancement and perplex. Even better, if she is killed by an opposing attack, the Surfer gets +1 to all his stats for the rest of the game. She just needs to watch out for poison and pulse wave.

8. F4049 The Thing (50 points) -So the first thing everyone sees with they see this dial is BUZZ AND CHUCK. I say ignore them, and then take another look and you’ll see the the most unique support figure in the game. He has sidestep, a special traited perplex, empower, and 19 defend. The 19 defend in particular is very rare and beneficial to any team that runs him.  But, he also has something that no 50 point support figure has ever had… four clicks of Invincible. Being the toughest support figure ever can be especially helpful in games where opposing figures are dealing penetrating damage via traits (like widows recruit). Unlike most support figures he’s not bad in in battle so make sure to push Buzz or Chuck to KO as soon as possible so the Thing can attack.

7. F4053A Ghost Rider (50 points) – I predict that this version of Ghost Rider will see even more play than the prime version because of her special starting defense. It reads, THE GUARDIAN PHANTASMA: Defend, Energy Shield/Deflection, Toughness, Willpower. // Adjacent friendly characters of equal or lower points or that share a keyword with Ghost Rider can use Energy Shield/Deflection.” So for any team that matches her keywords, she is worth consideration due to the extra protection she provides. Imagine giving that bonus to Onslaught or a bunch of Wendigos. Add to that her special version of a stop click and you can she why I think she will be on a variety of teams. 

6. F4034 Invisible Woman (60 points) – Every Susan Richards in the set shares the same trait for subbing in sideline characters, but this version of Sue is the only one with the the Shield and Avengers Keywords. That trait says, “FORM THE NEW FANTASTIC FOUR: At the beginning of the game, you may replace up to 4 friendly characters with the same number of characters from your sideline on their starting clicks. All replacement and replaced characters must have the Fantastic Four keyword and different names. The total points of the replacement characters can’t exceed the total points of the replaced characters.” Although if you are facing characters that use stealth or that can’t see through stealth, you are probably going to want to leave her in play. Just like the Ghost rider that shares ESD, Sue shares something with her teammates as well. Her Trait reads “YEAH, MY POWER SET IS REALLY GOOD FOR ESPIONAGE: Stealth, [Improved Targeting: Hindering]. Adjacent friendly characters that share a keyword (with her) can use Stealth and [Improved Targeting: Hindering].” That could be a huge boon against the right opponent.

5. F4021 Dr. Doom (45 points) – Here’s the Doctor Doom that we’ve been missing for the past few years. I’ve been excited to build around this guy ever since he was previewed. His Doombot making trait is the best reason to play him. It reads, MY ROBOTS OFTEN CONFUSE MY FOES: Leadership, Mastermind. When Dr. Doom uses Leadership and succeeds, instead of the normal effect, you may generate a [F4] 005 Doombot.” That’s a 33% chance of getting a free F4005 Doombot at the start of each turn. That’s pretty good, but you can take that up to absurd levels by assigning him the the Reign of Terror map bonus. It reads, “(+5 points, or 0 points if every character on your starting force has the Latveria keyword). LOCATION: At the beginning of the game, choose a friendly character. Once per turn, when that character rolls for Leadership you may reroll the result. If that character is named Dr. Doom, they increase their roll for Leadership by +1. CONSOLATION: Once per game, when a friendly character would roll for Leadership, they automatically succeed.” That 33% chance to generate a Doombot then jumps to a 75% with the map bonus. For even more fun throw in fellow scientist TREKRF014 Ensign Crusher.  Beyond making Doombots, this Doom supports them with Enhancement and starts with a nice Running Shot/Energy Explosion Combo.

4. F4058R Super Skrull (50 points) – Super Skrull is making people take notice with his trait. It reads, “THE POWERS OF THE FANTASTIC FOUR: At the beginning of your turn, choose two. Super Skrull has the listed effects until your next turn. INVISIBLE WOMAN: Sidestep, Stealth, Barrier as FREE but only to generate one marker. THE THING: Charge, Impervious, Close Combat Expert. MR. FANTASTIC: Plasticity, Super Senses, Giant Reach: 4. HUMAN TORCH: Running Shot, Energy Explosion, range of 6.” Most of the time that means you will be picking Mr. Fantastic and the Thing to become a nearly unhittable brawler. Especially when combined with his starting Shape Change and Skrull TA. Combine 5 of him with a F4040 Skrull General and you’ll have your own 280 point secret invasion ready to go.

3. F4013B Black Leopard (50 points) – Black Leopard has a game breaking trait the likes of which we haven’t seen since NFAOS059B Nighthawk . It reads, “TO FIGHT FOR EQUALITY IN RUDYARDA: The maximum attack, defense, and damage values of opposing characters within 6 squares and line of fire are each equal to Black Leopard’s printed value of that type.” Beyond that he’s got a long six click dial and (thankfully) lowish stats to go along with his starting Perplex and Leadership. He’s the first character your opponent will want to KO, which means your whole game plan should revolve around protecting him.

2. F4063 Valeria Von Doom (30 points) – She features leadership, Perplex, and very good defenses for her point cost. But it’s her trait that is making her see meta play (including on the winning ROC National team). It reads, “HUNTING ANOMALIES FROM OTHER WORLDS: FREE: Roll a d6 and place Valeria Von Doom up to that many squares away. // When an opposing character is placed within 4 squares and line of fire, after resolutions deal them 1 penetrating damage.” The first part of the trait combines well with her sidestep to let her move up to 8 squares as a free action. But it’s the second part of her trait that has everyone excited. It obviously affects opposing pieces like retaliators that are placed close to her. But it also affects things like the Telekinesis power and Knockback.  So equipping her with something like the WKMP19-S103 Spin (Mandarin Ring) lets her place any character in within a range of three into an adjacent square and do a penetrating damage to that character after actions resolve. That’s really good for a 30 point investment.

1. F4061R God Emperor Doom (100 points) – This is a character we’ve been begging for since the Battleworld set came out. At 100 points he’s got a short 4 click long dial and Battle Fury on two of his 4 clicks, but I love this guy. He features IMPROVED TARGETING: Hindering to go along with his running shot and superb 9 range. He also has a starting 12 attack and Probability Control because missing attacks is for mortals. He defense is nothing special with a 17 defense value and invulnerability, but when he does get hit he has 2 STOP clicks to protect him from being KOed. He should be able to rely on Doombots for defense or heal with steal energy and the new improved Minions of Doom TA if he does get hurt. He’s the leader of Battleworld and gets this unique trait, GOD OF BATTLEWORLD: When establishing themed teams, God Emperor Doom gains all Battleworld keywords. // Leadership, Perplex, Colossal Stamina. When God Emperor Doom uses Perplex to target another character with a Battleworld keyword, you may instead modify a combat value except damage by +2 or -2.” His last trait makes him one of the best figures in the game to deal with equipment. It reads,HMMM… AND DO YOU HAVE AN INFINITY GAUNTLET NOW?: FREE: Choose an opposing character within range and line of fire. That character can’t use the EFFECT of Equipment until your next turn.” It is especially important in the post ID card era.

 

That’s it for this set review. Leave a comment below to let me know what you thought of my picks.

 

 

The Once and Future Set (or a top ten set review of the Heroclix JLU set)

JLU

Some notes about the set:

  • Most of you won’t get to see this set until well after it’s release date due to COVID-19. So, hopefully my descriptions will do it justice. Also, this set is already in the units section of HCRealms.com.
  • This is the sequel to the Batman the Animated series set in both flavor and substance. Even the Chases continue the Super Friends line-up along with some of the villains getting in on the fun.
  • This set introduces team up cards and I am torn on their effectiveness. I  like the mechanic for the most part, but the execution was a bit off. Let me explain. Because the cards cost 0 points, the figures were assigned point costs that are about right if you are using a team up card, but the figures that have team up cards as possibilities seem over-costed if you aren’t using any cards. And you aren’t always going to have the team up cards you need or even any team up card choices at all. I opened a brick and only got 4 cards. So a lot of pieces like Superman 001 in this set I didn’t have any card options for, not even bad options. Superman 001’s dial costs 100 points, but on it’s own I’d guess it’s probably worth closer to about 80 points. What I think the designers should have done is assign point costs to the team up cards so that the characters in question are still reasonably costed even if you don’t have any team up card options. This isn’t true for all the figures that can use team up cards in the set, but it is for a lot of them.
  • Between this set and X-men animated late last year, it’s a good time to be a fan of animated super heroes. I was a huge fan of this show.
  • This set doesn’t have a lot of good attackers, but it has tons of great support characters.
  • This is the last set to come out before ID cards are retired from modern. Good Riddance!

And now on to the honorable mentions:

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5. JLU045 Hawkgirl AND JLU045.03 Team Up: Batman (60 points) – Unlike what I talked about in the notes about the set, Hawkgirl does have team up options and is worth her point cost even without using a team up card. Charge, flurry, 12 attack, and 12 movement make for a great secondary attacker. Because her starting defense is combat reflexes, she is vulnerable to being attacked at range. That’s why I’ve picked the Batman card to use her with. The stealth and extra movement it brings are very good bonuses for her. She would do well with the Green Lantern Team up card, but I really don’t like any of the Green Lantern dials made since the soon to be retired Elseworlds set. She also has the option of using a powerful Episode team up card that grants the Mystics TA to her Superman, Green Lantern, Dr. Fate, Aquaman, Amazo, and Vixen. Unfortunately, most of those characters don’t have great dials.

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4. JLU046E Martian Manhunter AND Episode Team Up JLU046.11 (50 points) – He has average attack and damage stats, but defensively he’s a powerhouse. He features Impervious, Super Senses, and Shape Change on his first click. However, his best feature is his powerful Episode Team Up card. It reads, “EPISODE TEAM UP: SUPERMAN, WONDER WOMAN, BATMAN, THE FLASH, GREEN LANTERN, HAWKGIRL: If 1+ listed friendly characters are on the map, Martian Manhunter and the listed characters take a maximum of 1 damage when on their starting click. If all listed characters are on the map, they and Martian Manhunter have [Teen Titans team ability].” Unlike Hawkgirl’s episode team up card, most of the characters listed on this team up have great dials and the ability to add essentially a stop click at the front of those dials is huge.

Superman Robot

3. JLU018E Superman (10 points) – Wizkids did something unique here and created a generic character dial inside of the dial of a named character. At 10 points this dial isn’t really Justice Lords Superman, it’s actually the dial for one of his many Superman Robots. I love the idea of a single figure that can represent both a unique person and a generic character based on what point level you use. I hope Wizkids does more of this in the future. 

As for the dial itself, it’s not ground breaking but for 10 points it’s very good. It’s single click features indomitable, Close Combat Expert, sidestep, toughness, the Justice Lords trait, and the Superman TA. I can see myself running several of these on competitive robot teams to carry figures like I.S.S.A.C. and danger room sinister, or just to fill points after ID Cards leave modern.

Solomon Grundy

2. JLU050 Solomon Grundy (75 points) – This is a great showing for Solomon Grundy that’s very reminiscent of the Hawkman/Hawkgirl figure from the BTAS set. It features a 10 click long dial that essentially has a stop click in the middle. His trait reads, “THE LIFE AND DEATH OF SOLOMON GRUNDY: FREE: Turn Solomon Grundy’s dial to the same click # of a different color. // The first time Solomon Grundy would be KO’d, instead turn him to either click #1 and he can’t use this trait for the rest of the game. Protected: Pulse Wave.” Looking at his dial unless you need the extra movement from sidestep on the red dial, you’re just going to want to leave it on the blue side and then choose blue again when he resurrects. With his damage reducers, long dial, steal energy, and high attack value it’s hard to believe this guy is only 75 points.

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1. JLU062 Ultra-Humanite (25 points) – For 25 points you get a solid TK piece with sidestep and willpower. It also has my favorite trait of the set that reads, “INJUSTICE LEAGUE: At the beginning of your turn, roll a d6. 6: Give an action token to an opposing character that’s 100 points or less.” So there is a 1 in 6 chance every turn that this 25 point piece can give an action token to an opposing figure anywhere on the map. What I’ve mentioned so far should already be enough to justify his point cost, but he also comes with a special mind control that reads “FAR EASIER TO USE MY SUPERIOR INTELLECT AND MENTAL POWERS: Mind Control, Sidestep. When Ultra-Humanite uses Mind Control, his range value becomes 8 and he has [Improved Targeting: Hindering, Elevated, Blocking, Characters].” He can target through any type of terrain. Walls, a mountain, and the jungles of Wakanda won’t stop his mind control. If he had any defense or other support figures in the injustice league to pair him with, he would have definitely made the top ten.

Here’s the Top Ten:

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10. JLU035 Superman (175 points) – Potentially the toughest Superman the game has ever seen. Defensively he features 7 clicks that all have reducers, protection from outwit, limited self healing, and 3 stop clicks. But what really makes him so impressive is his long range and huge offensive stats located around those stop clicks. Click 4 has 12 attack and 5 damage. click 5 (his first stop click) has 13 attack and 4 damage. Click 6 has 12 attack and 4 damage.

He’s a one man army. He’ll have to be, because unfortunately at 175 points he takes up most of a 300 point build. Still this is a very powerful character with all the bells and whistles, so don’t underestimate him.

Superman

9. JLU105 Superman (125 points) – Now we get to what I believe is the best Justice League Primary attacker in the set (although he’s actually from the fast forces). The reasons why I like him better than the 175 point superman is that he has a lower cost, starting hypersonic, high attack his whole dial, and the ability to make a second attack if he hit with the first. He’s not as tough as the 175 point version, but he still has two stop clicks at the end of his dial. The large amount perplex available to Justice League team will come in really handy here because his second attack isn’t just limited to printed values, so you’ll get twice the bang for your buck when you increase his damage with perplex. Also, this character greatly benefits from WKMP19-S001 Exospex because he has no range and sidestep as his movement power on every click except his first.

Booster Gold

8. JLU053 Booster Gold (80 points) – This is the best Booster Gold ever made. His 10 Attack and 3 damage are underwhelming, but they are bolstered by his special damage power that reads “SKEETS, BOOSTER GOLD’S BIGGEST FAN: Perplex, Probability Control. When Booster Gold uses Perplex to target himself, he may instead modify a combat value other than damage +2.“He’s got running shot and invulnerability on his first click. He also has a trait that lets him protect himself  and his team from ranged attacks. It reads, “CROWD CONTROL: Barrier. Barrier as FREE, but only to generate 2 markers.” He makes a perfect secondary attacker on a Justice League team.

Amanda Waller

7. JLU040 Amanda Waller (35 points) – An Incredible support figure for Justice League teams with leadership, outwit, and perplex all at the same time. Defensively she has both Stealth and Mastermind. In addition, she brings an awesome trait to the table the reads, “BECAUSE THE WORLD NEEDS A BATMAN: During force construction, choose a friendly character of 125 points or less with the Batman Family keyword. That character has the Future keyword. // At the beginning of the game, choose a combat value. This game, that chosen character modifies that combat value +1.” But that trait is only as powerful as the best Batman Family figure you can use with her, which means the next character on this list must be…

batman

6. JLU005B Batman (40 points) – No figure has been getting more buzz than this one since being previewed. He has the ability to target everyone in range at the same time with his trait “SOMETHING WHEN GONE, YOU CAN NEVER REGAIN: FREE: For the rest of the game, Batman can’t use the Batman Ally team ability and whenever he occupies a clear square and is given a RANGE action to use Incapacitate, Mind Control, or Penetrating/Psychic Blast, he can use [Improved Targeting: Hindering, This character can make range attacks while adjacent to opposing characters. (May target adjacent or non-adjacent opposing characters.)] and may instead target all opposing characters within line of fire.” Combine his targeting with his 12 attack and his uses of incapacitate or mind control can easily hit a whole team at once. At the back half of his dial is psychic blast that has been in debate online about whether his damage is divided among all hit targets or not. Regardless of the outcome of that ruling, opponents are going to target him first on your team so you won’t get to use those last few clicks very often.

He’s very good if you want to center your team around using him effectively, but he’s not someone you throw on a team without a plan.

Ace GIF

5. JLU058 Ace (60 points) – An incredible support figure with tons of powers. On offense she got a special mind control that reads, “DRIVE YOU INSANE: Mind Control. When Ace uses it, after resolutions give a hit character an Insanity token. // When a character with an Insanity token attacks, modify their attack -2 and then remove one of their Insanity tokens. If they missed all targets with that attack, after resolutions deal them 1 unavoidable damage.” She’s only a 6 range, 10 attack, and no way to move and attack, but if she hits with that it will probably stop the next attack that character makes. But, the real reason to play her is her game breaking trait, “WARP PERCEPTIONS AND REALITY: Shape Change, ProbabilityControl. Other characters (friendly and opposing) can’t use Probability Control except for Themed Team Probability Control.” Of course your opponent could try to take her out, but her last trait will punish them for it. It reads “BATMAN MUST TALK HER OUT OF HER FINAL PSYCHIC BACKLASH: When Ace is KO’d by an opponent’s close attack, deal 1 unavoidable damage to that character. When Ace is KO’d by an opponent’s range attack, deal 1 unavoidable damage to each opposing character. Protected: Pulse Wave.” Her biggest downfall is a Lack of good keywords. Project Cadmus is probably her best team choice.

the atom

4. JLU059A The Atom (40 points) – With Perplex, Outwit, and the ability to make other characters tiny it’s easy to see why he makes a good support character. But he’s more than your average support character. Making other characters tiny is great to allow you to carry a figure that you wouldn’t normally able to carry. ABPI011 Ant-Man has a similar power and I learned to use to great effect when I won a WKO sealed tournament last year using Ant-Man. Atom can also use shrink an adjacent opposing figures to deny them the ability to use their equipment until you next turn, or make it easier for another character to break away from that character, or to open up a line of fire. He also has a special movement power that reads, “RIDING ALONG UNDETECTED: Leap/Climb, Stealth. When an adjacent character is given a MOVE or POWER action, after resolutions you may place The Atom adjacent to that character.” He can use this to tie up opponents and take advantage of of his 19 starting defense. He can also use this to be move along with friendly units that couldn’t carry him because they were using hyper sonic speed or carrying someone else. And because he isn’t actually being carried he can still take a non-free action after being moved. Someone would have to do something absolutely crazy to be a better Justice League Support character.

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3. JLU031B Crimson Avenger (30 points) – So this is a Justice League support character that does something crazy. Just like ABPI069 Kobik he can give an action token to an opposing character as free action. So no having to roll dice, or worrying about defense powers, and he can do it after moving or being carried. Unlike Kobik he doesn’t need to be adjacent, he just needs to be within 5 squares of the character he’s giving the token to. His trait reads, “KNOCKOUT GAS:Smoke Cloud as FREE, but only to generate 4 markers. When Crimson Avenger uses it, after resolutions choose an opposing character occupying or adjacent to one of his Smoke Cloud markers and give that character an action token.He can also use his smoke cloud to hide friendly characters when he’s not in range of an opposing character. Aside from his trait he also has perplex, stealth, poison, and combat reflexes. This guy is low-key powerful and not many people have caught on to him yet.

amazo

2. JLU012 Amazo AND JLU012.05 Team Up: The Flash (125 points) – Amazo is the best primary attacker in this set and he has 5 different team up cards as options. The Flash team up is by far the best. It grants Hyper Sonic Speed and Super senses. He can also use his power adaption trait to get more powers. It states, “POWER ADAPTATION: At the beginning of your turn, you may choose a character within 4 squares and line of fire and up to 2 standard powers that character can use. If Amazo is 100 or 125 points, you may choose 3 standard powers instead. Amazo can use the chosen powers and has the printed range value of that character until he chooses again.” And all of these powers he acquires work with his defensive trait that reads, “INVINCIBLE ANDROID BODY: Amazo takes a maximum of 1 damage when attacked by a character that can use a power other than Willpower that Amazo can use. He can’t be healed, equipped, or chosen for Mastermind.” I should note that his team up card also has an additional disadvantage built in. You can’t have characters on your sideline except those for the Amazo Team Up Cards. (You need to declare what effect your Sideline game elements are for during game force construction.) So that means no ID or trouble alert characters. Obviously he’ll hit his stride after ID cards are retired in a few months.

When I first saw this guy I thought he’d make a perfect primary attacker for the danger room pieces from the last X-men set. Or, he’d at least head up a really nice team of robot pieces from various sets (Ultron, I.S.S.A.C, Cyclops Sentinel, etc…) He could also be part of a very good Cadmus Labs teams with JLU058 Ace, JLU040 Amanda Waller, and JLU051E Batman Beyond. But honestly, any team could use a piece that is a great attacker and only takes one damage from opposing attacks. So lots of opportunity for this guy.

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1. JLU069E Brainiac (10 or 0 points) – This set introduces a new form of sideline active characters with a new trait called “LET’S CAUSE TROUBLE!: SIDELINE ACTIVE – Friendly characters have “FREE: If this character critical hit this turn or made the third attack this turn to hit all opposing targets, place a character from your Sideline that can use a Let’s Cause Trouble! trait adjacent on its blue starting line.” // At the beginning of your turn, if Brainiac started the game due to the Let’s Cause Trouble! trait, roll a d6. 4-6: Return Brainiac to your Sideline.” Brainiac is clearly the best of those 4 characters, but they are all worth having. He starts with 11 attack, triple target incapacitate, outwit, and a special phasing power that works like running shot. He also has a trait that says “THE EARTH…IT’S DISAPPEARED!: Once per turn for all characters with this effect, roll a d6. 3-4: Give each opposing character within 4 squares of Brainiac that occupies elevated terrain an action token. 5-6: Deal each opposing character within 4 squares of Brainiac that occupies elevated terrain 1 penetrating damage.” So imagine you roll a critical hit on your turn and you put this guy out for free, you can then incapacitate up to three opposing figures, use his trait against elevated figures, and use outwit on someone’s defense power. That’s a really good deal for 0 points and and could be a huge change in momentum in a game.

Because this character lives on your sideline and doesn’t cost points or affect your theme team bonuses, there is absolutely no reason to not put him on every sideline of every team (not featuring Amazo) for the next two years until he’s retired. And that’s why he’s the best character in this set.

 

 

That’s it for this set review. Leave a comment below to let me know what you thought of my picks.

 

 

A Critical Missives Brick Opening: JLU

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Hi guys. Critical Missives got a brick of the new set and I’d like to share all of the pictures with you. Of the 10 packs I got 1 Prime, 1 Chase, 3 SRs, and 5 packs with just rares (although four of those packs contained Team up cards). I’m a big fan of this set and I’m happy with my pulls. So without further Ado…

Pack 1 (Prime Batman)

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Pack 2 (Stripe)

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Pack 3 (Amanda Waller)

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Pack 4 (Green Lantern Team up, Blight)

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Pack 5 (Lex Luthor Team up, Static Shock)

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Pack 6 (Gorilla Grood Chase)

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Pack 7 (The Atom)

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Pack 8 (Green Arrow Team Up, Amazo)

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Pack 9 (The Flash Team Up, Shade)

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Pack 10 (Ace)

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As usual, you can find all these dials in the forum section of hcrealms.com. Good luck with your bricks!

Oh Captain, my Captain (or a top 10 set review of Captain America and the Avengers

Cap Prerelease

Some notes about the set:

  • The Avengers and Shield keywords did well. The Masters of Evil were pretty good. The Thunderbolts were refugees from a previous set where the power level wasn’t quite as high. They would be decent 3 years ago, but not now.
  • The espionage trait is my shared favorite trait in a long time, and it is all over this set. It makes a lot of useful figures in the lower rarities.
  • Speaking of rarities, some of the SRs and Chases are the most powerful we’ve ever seen. Especially the Avengers and SHIELD pieces.
  • We got the best versions of some of the marvel mainstays (Thor, Hulk, Spider-man) that we’ve ever seen.

And now on to the honorable mentions:

5. CAAV062E Baron Zemo (45 points) – At 45 points he does everything you need him to do. He’s a stealthy outwit character, who grants your whole team the Avengers Initiative TA, and makes your whole team into one named keyword. If the core Thunderbolts were better,  he would be in the top 10.

4. CAAV018B The Captain (45 points) – The first character on this list with the living legend trait that reads, “LIVING LEGEND: The first time each game The Captain would be KO’d, instead turn him to his last non-KO click, then roll a d6 and heal him equal to half the result. Protected: Pulse Wave.” In the captain’s case that likely means that he will come back on his support clicks, but that’s still a really good deal. So for his 45 points you get 6 clicks, then the trait essentially acts as a stop click and gives you at least more click of life after that. Your opponent is going to spend at least 3 good attacks KOing this guy and he’s only 45 points! Beyond that the designers just decided that he deserved 11 attack on every click. All of them. I have never seen that before. At the beginning of the game he’ll also pick up the Marvel TA of your choice (like Avengers Initiative, Masters of Evil, Underworld), or become immune to probability control!

nick fury

3. CAAV007 Nick Fury (75 points) – This is a great showing for Nick Fury that I am sure will show up on a few winning builds before long. He’s the first character on this list with my favorite new trait “Espionage” that combines well with his starting outwit. It reads, “ESPIONAGE: Stealth, Improved Movement: Hindering, Improved Targeting: Hindering.” Beyond that, he’s able to make his own strike team of very capable SHIELD agents by hitting his leadership rolls. Should he come under fire, he also has one last trick up his sleeve. A special stop click that reads, “LIFE MODEL DECOY: STOP. Mastermind. When this click is first revealed, after resolutions roll a d6. Place Nick Fury up to that many squares away from his current square.

Agent_Carter13

2.  CAAV006 Sharon Carter (35 points)  – Bringing leadership, perplex, the shield TA, and possibly outwit to your team. She’s guarded from ranged attacks by both ESD and the Espionage trait. With a starting 10 attack, 5 range, and 2 damage she’s a capable 3rd string attacker from the safety of hindering terrain.

war machine

1. CAAV053A War Machine (100 points) – How is a guy that can attack twice in a turn most turns (“60% of the time, it works every time”) not be in the top 10? Well this is just an extremely powerful set and there is a guy a little further up the list that is almost the same as him, but slightly better. That being said, War Machine is no slouch. In another set he would be challenging for the top spot. He’s an Offensive powerhouse who can ignore hindering terrain for targeting. He also features running shot, psychic blast, and a self-perplex he can use to add to his starting 11 attack and 4 damage. In addition, he has a trait that reads “MINI-GUN TARGET LOCK: When War Machine hits, after resolutions you may give a hit character a Target Lock token, then remove all other Target Lock tokens. // FREE: Make a range attack using War Machine’s printed attack and damage values, but only to target the character with his Target Lock token.” His real weakness is defense. He does start with 18 defense and invincible, but his 6 clicks of life will seem rather short when he comes under fire from opposing forces.

Here’s the top 10:

10. CAAV049 Taskmaster (60 points) – At sixty points with stealth and perplex he makes a great support figure for Thunderbolts or SHIELD  teams. But labeling him a support figure would discount his starting 12 attack, blades claws fangs, and the ability to gain charge or flurry. He’ll hide as support figure until the opponent gets close enough for him to pounce and embarrass a higher cost figure in one-on-one combat. Sneaky good.

9. CAAV071 Ghost Rider (70 points) – for only 20 points more than ABPI017 Voyager you get a figure that can move your whole team AND kicks a huge amount of butt for his point cost. You’ll lose the starting outwit that voyager has, but gain in every other category. His biggest draw is his trait that reads “THE AVENGERS HAVE A SWEET NEW RIDE: Passenger: 3, but only to carry character who share a keyword regardless of [Wing symbol]. // Ram. When Ghost Rider uses it, he modifies speed +3 and does not take unavoidable damage from it.” He’s the first clix in the game to be able to use ram and not take damage from using it. So your opponent needs to constantly worry about how many characters they have across from this guy or they risk him attacking 2 or 3 at a time from up to 13 squares away.  Offensively, he starts with charge, exploit weakness, and 4 starting damage! On Defense he has a full dial of damage reducers and the rarely-seen-these-days mystics team ability.

8. CAAV052 Spider-Man (85 points) – PlayStation Spider-man comes in at number 8 with an impressive dial. Defensively he’s a stud with a Stealth Mode dial that would make even Batman jealous. It brings a special movement power that reads, “TAKING OUT FISK’S OPERATIONS ONE HIDEOUT AT A TIME: Sidestep, Stealth. // FREE: Place Spider-Man in a square of hindering terrain within 4 squares and line of fire.” Combine that with his toughness, shape change, and super senses that succeeds on a 4-6 (it’s also immune to outwit) and you have one of the hardest characters to damage we’ve ever seen. Which means he should make it to his target untouched. That’s where he switches to Fight (AKA instant-kill) mode. The main attraction of that mode is his higher attack values and his damage power that states “THE RIGHT GADGET FOR THE JOB: FREE: Choose one: Outwit, Perplex, Close Combat Expert, or Exploit Weakness. Spider-Man can use the chosen power until your next turn.” So Spidey has better gadgets now than Batman does. Wizkids will be hearing from Bruce’s Lawyer.

7. CAAV075E Peggy Carter (50 points, but more likely 0 points) – She has 4 clicks of life that are bolstered by the Living Legend trait . This is important because she may be KOed when she first comes into play and get use out of that trait right away. She also brings out a Becky Barnes bystander when she comes into play and Becky is a skilled close combat attacker with willpower and 18 defense bolstered by combat reflexes.

It was hard to pick which spot on my list this lady should get, because 99% of the time she’s played she will be coming into the game from your sideline for the low cost of zero points. I can 100% say she is worth the zero points you are paying for her. But she is only as good as the best Captain America or Steve Rogers you can play with her, which means the next character on this list has to be:

6. CAAV038 Steve Rogers (50 points) – From the moment this guy was previewed people online have been theory crafting teams based around his trait which reads, “WE’LL TAKE ALL THE HELP WE CAN GET, IF YOU’RE WORTHY: Leadership. During force construction, you may choose a standard character of 50 points or less. That character loses its printed keywords (for the entire game) and then gains either the Avengers -or- S.H.I.E.L.D. keyword (choose one).” Most of the Internet settled on Prime Vulture being the best new Avenger, but teams with Mr. Oz, Danger Room Magneto, and (if I get my way) Super Friends Hawk Girl are also possibilities. Besides his trait he’s also a capable support figure with perplex, leadership and the SHIELD team ability. Defensively he features combat reflexes and the Living Legend trait.

5. CAAV074E Ultron (100 Points) – The go-to figure for robot or Masters of Evil Teams. Yes, I am aware that Ultron has a higher cost dial with a 14 starting attack. This point level is where I envision him being played the most. He still has a great starting attack of 12, perplex to help his team, sidestep that works well with equipment like the power stone, psychic blast, his ENCEPHALO-RAY trait, and 2 of the 3 stop clicks that the 150 point dial has. But most importantly the 100 point dial gives him what he needs most – room from other characters on your team. 150 points is a lot to use on one figure in today’s 300 point meta.

4. CAAV070E Thor (75 points) – The best Thor we’ve ever seen and just like Ultron I like him best on his mid dial rather than his full dial. He’s the most efficient 75 point ranged secondary attacker I have ever seen. The number on reason is the extra powers his lightning marker gives him while attached. “CRACKLING WITH ELECTRICITY: When Thor has the Lightning marker attached, he can use Energy Shield/Deflection and Poison. // When Thor has the Lightning marker attacked, he has Mystics team ability, but only for close attacks.” Poison in particular is super useful against characters like Q or Kobik that have great defenses, but no reducers. Beyond that trait his starting dial has running shot, 11 attack, 4 damage, invincible, and probability control. As an added bonus, this Thor is also the first one I can remember having a stop click.

3. CAAV058 Immortal Hulk (100 points) – The reason why is most people are using him is that he is a nearly-immortal ID card launcher. So he can just walk up to the other team and starting summoning out cards like 100 point Colossal Iceman or 85 points Asgardian Storm and there is not much that the opposing team can do about it. They can’t kill him and if they try it will likely only make things worse. But on the other hand the longer the game goes on, the more powerful Hulk will become. Thanks to his trait which reads, “POWERED BY SADISTIC VENGEANCE: When a friendly character within line of fire is damaged by an opposing attack, put a Vengeance token on this card. FREE: Remove two Vengeance tokens to use Charge at no cost.” So late game after Hulk has built up 2 or more vengeance tokens you can just push Hulk yourself to transform him and you can still make a charge attack that same turn with his starting 12 attack value and 4 damage value. That’s his secret. He’s always angry.

captain marvel

2. CAAV054E Captain Marvel (95 points) – Despite her protests, her cat being a Flerken is the best part about this piece. Chewie the cat has a special movement power that reads “MAYBE IT IS A FLERKEN: : Flurry, Plasticity, Giant Reach: 2“. That goes along well with his blades/claws/fangs, super senses, and perplex. And the best part is that Captain Marvel can put out the Chewie bystander as a free action. Captain Marvel also has a special movement power that reads “HIGHER!: Hypersonic Speed. When Captain Marvel uses it, after resolutions deal 1 penetrating damage to an opposing character she moved through. If that character is a vehicle, deal it 3 penetrating damage instead.” So in the same turn she can move through a person to damage them, make an attack with hypersonic speed, and then drop a Chewie bystander (who gets to use his Flurry and BCF). Beyond everything I mentioned, she has starting probability control and two stop clicks (the 2nd of which is very strong). This makes her a very well rounded character deserving of the 2nd spot on this list.

1. CAAV053B Punisher War Machine (90 points, but you should only play him at 95) – Like I mentioned earlier in War Machine’s entry this guy is very similar, but better. An offensive powerhouse the likes of which we have never seen before. He can attack twice two out of every 3 turns with his trait that reads, “THE WAR NEVER ENDS: Colossal Stamina. // If Punisher War Machine has two action tokens, he has FREE: Make an attack.” And if he wants to burn clicks of life by using colossal stamina, he can make two attacks every single turn (even if he started the turn with two action tokens). His special attack is not limited to his printed values, so increasing his damage with a power like perplex is twice as useful on him. He also has the ability to see through hindering to go along with his starting 12 attack and 4 damage value. On defense he has a trait that reads, “(+5) THE MAN INSIDE IS THE REAL MACHINE: During force construction, you may include a character named “Punisher” of 75 points or less on your Sideline. When Punisher War Machine would be KO’d, instead replace him with that Punisher on its last click then roll a d6 and heal that Punisher half the result. This game, that Punisher can’t be healed any other way. Protected: Pulse Wave.” So just when opponent thinks they are done with this nightmare there is a still a little more to go. Add it all up and this is definitely the best character in the set.

That’s it for this set review. Leave a comment below to let me know what you thought of my picks.

The Ghost of Clix-Mas Present Presents: Team Ideas: From Pauper to Meta!! (Or, the Fourth Day of Clix-Mas 2019!!)

[EDITOR’S NOTEWelcome to Night Four of the 12 Nights of Clix-Mas 2019!! First, we reviewed the ground rules; yesterday, we hit the ground running with an in-depth review of Call-In Cards from friend of the blog, Roberto Ty! Night Three brought us HypeFox’s look at the 10 best Chases of the year. And now, here’s a rare holiday appearance from writer/co-founder Ninwashui. It’s a Clix-Mas Miracle!!]

Brotherhood TWO

If you don’t remember the Brotherhood team that Roberto and HypeFox ran at the ROC Pauper events in October, they looked like this:

100 XDPSG007R Juggernaut
50 XDPS011B Magneto
45 XDPS023B Sabretooth
60 XDPS021 Blob
45 XDPS019 Amelia Vought
300 points (Brotherhood of Mutants, +5 map initiative roll, +5 Theme Team Probability Control)

That team was run twice at that event and ended up taking 4th and 6th place that day. While it was not the only Juggernaut build, I am relatively certain it was the only Brotherhood build. In a world with colossal retaliation figures, location bonuses, and ID cards, The Brotherhood of Mutants just can’t compete in the Meta. I mean, none of them are Cosmic, so that should disqualify them right there.

Kobik 616

I am the living embodiment of the meta…

But, what if the Brotherhood did try to compete? What would that team look like? My answer would be “largely the same as pauper”.

First lets keep what worked from the Pauper Team. That would be:

  • XDPSG007R Juggernaut (100 points)
  • XDPS011B Magneto (50 points)
  • XDPS019 Amelia Vought (45 points)
  • XDPS023B Sabretooth (45 points)

That gives us a total of 240 points. So what do we do with the other 60? Lets start off by adding some additional offense since that what’s it seemed to be lacking in the pauper tournament. Sabretooth and Magneto are hard to kill, but they are also are hard to get kills with. Since this is a Meta team we’ll add offense the same way every other meta team does it… with ID cards.

Now, I don’t see Juggernaut ever not attacking since he’s the Juggernaut and that’s what he does. And it’s all he does. Using a card never seems like the right move for him.

By the same token, though, Amelia Vought should be doing absolutely nothing and using cards hurts her effectiveness. That leaves 50 point Magneto and 45 point Sabretooth. I can add up to 4 cards with the team I have so far so I’ll choose:

  • WKMVID-017 Beast Student ID – 3 points (WCR005E Beast – 40 points) – He can come into play with 11 att and 4 dam and use his charge to attack, or come into play with one less att and dam and be the teams only source of Outwit.
  • Stunner

    Stone Cold Stunner

  • WKMVID-019 Iceman Student ID – 3 points (XDPSG025P Iceman – 15 points) – What’s this, A colossal retaliation piece as a call in? Iceman has 3 dam and 11 att for his Colossal Retaliation attack and regardless of whether he hits he can use incapacitate as a free action on any opposing figure within reach. From there Iceman can simply walk off into the sunset (more than 5 squares away from the piece that called him in) to deny the other team points. Alternatively, Iceman can OPEN A SIX PACK OF STUNNERS on opposing Colossal figures with his trait that states “CHILL, IT’S JUST A GIANT ICE SWORD: Blades/Claws/Fangs. When Iceman KO’s a [Giant symbol] or [Colossal symbol] character, after resolutions he can use Charge at no cost, but may only attack a character with [Giant symbol] or [Colossal symbol]. (He may repeat this.)” That’s huge upside for a 3 point investment.
  • WKMVID-020 Jean Grey Student ID – 3 points (XDPSG010P Phoenix – 25 points) – This is who you should summon if you are near 1 or more opposing figures that are vulnerable to poison. After using Poison, Phoenix can use her colossal retaliation to hopefully deal some penetrating damage and lower some combat values. Following that she can attack an opposing colossal figure, use her Telekinesis, or just walk off into the sunset.
  • WKMDOFP-005 Storm Wanted Poster – 5 points (XDPSG023BP Storm – 25 points) – Arguably the best sub 50 point call in and one of the best retaliation figures. Her colossal retaliation starts with an 11 att close combat attack. If you hit, then the fun begins and you get a free action triple target mind control at +3 att! Regardless of whether she hits she can then use her trait stating, “SUMMON A VORTEX OF WIND:  FREE: Choose up to 3 opposing characters within 6 squares and line of fire, then roll a d6. Knock back each of the chosen characters a number of squares equal to the result.” And everything I just mentioned so far is just the free actions. From there she can she can still use a standard action to attack ANY opposing character, or walk off into the sunset.

Then Lets Get This Started

Those 4 cards total 14 points which brings us to a total of 254. Let’s look at equipment next. Juggernaut can’t use equipment, and Amelia Vought doesn’t need it since she spends all her time doing nothing. That leaves Sabretooth and Magneto. I’ll put in the ABPIS002 Time Gem for Sabretooth and the ABPIS001 Reality Gem for Magneto. This will give the team some additional support powers it was lacking and help it deal with the inevitable dice altering powers it will face.

Those 2 gems total 20 points which brings us up to a total of 274. It looks like the only thing left to do is add another figure. Let’s add support figure XDPSG015P Magneto (25 points). The first thing you’ll notice about this Magneto is colossal retaliation and if you judge him like one of those pieces you will be sorely disappointed. What he really is, is a support figure with Telekenisis and Sidestep – which is a great combo. Compare him to TREKOS006 Lt. Kyle which is one of my favorite characters from the first trek set. This Magneto is there to position your figures, use theme team Prob Control and provide Leadership so that when you start calling in figures you aren’t short on actions. He can also take the occasional shot at the enemy via Colossal Retaliation (followed usually by running away).

Conclusion:

main-qimg-c0d6268cef42c2c00d3dbaee760a561c

Can this team compete with the primarily Cosmic Meta? Maybe. With some testing, tweaking, and practice – this team could potentially place high at a future event. One thing’s for sure, though… your opponent definitely won’t see this coming.

Unless, you know, your opponent read this article. In that case then you are probably out of luck.

Thanks for reading, and let me know what you thought about this team in the comments below!

 

 

 

And That’s the Top 5, Because Stone. Cold. Said So! (Or, a Look at the Top 5 Figures in the WWE Set!!)

Some notes about the set:

  • These wrestlers are more effective than they have any right to be in Heroclix. They can do a Flying Leap that hurts Superman. They can Body Slam Galactus. They can put the Living Tribunal in a Submission Hold. When I wrote Wizkids for an explanation about how plausible this was, they replied saying “I need you to get all the way off my back about this.” Apparently this set was designed by the writer from the Pitch Meetings series on You Tube.

  • The WWE Rules and Grand Entrance are what put these guys over the top (pun intended).
    WWE Rules: This character can’t be the target of range attacks or Outwit if: they’re on click #1, they’re on a click with a blue click #, -or- they’ve already been targeted by a range attack this turn. Protected: Pulse Wave.
    Grand Entrance: During your first turn, if this character is in your starting area, they have “FREE: Move.” (Grand Entrance is great for picking up Equipment.)
  • I think that in order to be meta, you’ll need to splash these guys onto generic  keyworded or non keyworded teams. I don’t see entirely WWE teams making it too far in a modern tournament.
  • In a lot of sets I usually like the lower dials on figures better than the full point dials. In this set I can’t find a single lower dial I like better.
  • John Cena is on this list, but just like the wrestler himself you can’t see it.

Now on to our Honorable Mentions that just missed the cut:

Pedigree

3. WWE003 Triple H (85 points) – The Cerebral Assassin was just a nickname, but Wizkids went ahead and gave him the Assassin keyword (along with Politician.) His Special Power makes him a great leader for those keywords. It reads “ Numbers Game: Empower. Friendly characters that are adjacent or share a keyword with him besides WWE can use Empower.” Beyond giving his whole team Empower his signature move Pedigree is very good. It gives him +1 Damage, adds an action token to whomever it hits, combines with his stun to give a hit target -1 to Attack and Damage next turn, and works in conjunction with Charge. Down dial he gets Slam (my favorite WWE power) to add action tokens followed by some additional clicks with the combination of Flurry and Outwit.

Sweet Chin Music!

2. WWE106 Shawn Michaels (75 points) – Shawn Micheals is mostly a one-trick pony, but it’s a heck of a trick. At 75 points his damage value maxes out at 2 and he doesn’t have charge or any starting attack power. He does have a Perplex power that he can use to help out your team while remaining safe from ranged attacks due to his WWE team ability. Then once every 4-5 turns he builds up enough “Tuning Up the Band Counters” to make his signature move Sweet Chin Music absolutely deadly.  It reads, “ Signature Move: Sweet Chin Music: CLOSE: Improved Movement: Characters. If Shawn Michaels has 1 action token, move him up to half his speed value and then make a close attack, modifying attack and damage +1 for each Tuning Up The Band token. After resolutions, remove those tokens.” So Shawn Micheals can move 2 squares from sidestep, then 1 more from Nimble, and then 5 more from Sweet Chin Music before hitting attacking someone with a 14 att value and 5 damage! It’s obvious to see why they didn’t give a higher starting damage than 2, but it sure makes playing him feel super uneven. The other thing that makes him hard to put on a team is that he is one of the few characters in the set to not have any generic keywords that would let you easily include him on a non WWE team.

Chokeslam

1. WWE0014 Kane (100 points) – Kane has great keywords and on the right map *cough* Wakanda *cough* he’ll be attacking up to four people at once. However, in my opinion he gets out shined a bit by his brother the Undertaker. His “Fiery Posts” Special Power is very map dependent, but when it works it really works well. It reads, “ Fiery Posts: POWER: Choose up to 4 opposing characters within 6 squares that are adjacent to 2+ Ropes.Make a close attack targeting all of them regardless of adjacency. Each hit character is dealt 2 penetrating damage.” He doesn’t have a starting support power, but he does have a 9 click long dial with 4 starting Damage. On the back end of his dial he has Charge, Reversal, Toughness, and Prob Control all at once. His signature move, Chokeslam, can do up to 7 damage if your dice are lucky, but an opposing character needs to start the round adjacent to Kane when Kane has one action token. Most opponents will see that coming. A fun fact Hypefox told me is that Kane has the Politician Keyword in Heroclix because he’s a Mayor of a town in Tennessee in real life! 

[EDITOR’S NOTE: I believe it’s Knox County, Tennessee!]

Here’s my Top 5:

Mr. Socko

5. WWE102 Mankind (75 points) – Mankind is an effective tough combatant that will just keep coming back for more punishment thanks to his 7 clicks of Toughness and the healing from his Special White Power. It reads “ Cactus Jack or Dude Love: FREE: Choose one: Mankind can use Perplex until your next turn -or- heal Mankind 1 click.” He doesn’t hit for a lot of damage, but whenever he does hit most of the time he will also give that hit character an action token. That comes from him having both Slam and a Signature Move that gives action tokens. It reads, “ Signature Move: Mr. Socko: CLOSE: If Mankind has 1 action token, make a close attack. After resolutions, a hit target gains Immobile and is given an action token.” Both Slam and his Signature Move also work with his top dial Charge.

Flying Elbow

4. WWE0010 Macho Man Randy Savage (100 points) – He was one of the greatest guys to ever shoot a promo before a fight (Ohhh Yeahhhh). Wizkids gave him a special damage power to reflect that. It reads, “ ONE OF THE GREATEST TALKERS IN WWE HISTORY: Perplex. When Macho Man uses it to target himself, he may modify a value except damage +2 instead of +1. When he uses it to target an opposing character, until your next turn that character can’t use Outwit or Perplex.” So he can give himself a 20 Defense, or 13 Attack, or he can give someone like the Unimind -1 att and completely block that character from using Outwit or Perplex (not that Outwit works against WWE figures most of the time anyways). Defensively, he starts with Reversal and Super Senses that along with his high defense from Perplex makes him a frighteningly effective tie up character. If you are the opponent, you’ll have to get through his 20 Defense and Super Senses that’s Immune to Outwit and you only are able to break away on a 6 thanks to Reversal. If you miss, or if he rolls Super Senses, or if you try to break away and fail then Macho Man gets a free attack on his next turn due to Reversal. Macho Man’s Signature Move the Flying Elbow is a harder to pull off version of Kane’s Choke Slam that can do up to 6 damage if your dice are lucky, but only if he starts the move next to at least two ropes (printed hindering or blocking not on a diagonal square).

The Three Amigos

3. WWE017 Eddie Guerrero (70 points) – He’ll lie, cheat, and steal just one of your opponent’s attack dice with his special take on Prob Control. It reads “ Lie, Cheat and Steal: Probability Control, but you may choose to reroll only one die.” At his point level that combined with his WWE TA might be enough right there to justify playing him. However, he also is one of only 2 figures in the set to have a stop click and his signature move The Three Amigos can be deadly. It reads “ Signature Move: Three Amigos: If Eddie Guerrero has 1 action token, Flurry. When Eddie Guerrero uses it, he can make 3 close attacks instead of 2 and his maximum damage value is 3.” Unfortunately, Eddie doesn’t have much ability to move and attack so characters with powers like Hypersonic Speed will be real tough for him to handle without help.

The People’s Elbow

2. WWE001 The Rock (90 points)- For 90 points the Rock brings starting Charge, Slam, Invulnerability, and Perplex. That’s everything I want in a starting click for a WWE figure and he has a 9 click long dial that features Slam (my favorite WWE power) on most of it. His signature move The People’s Elbow is one of the few in the set to add to both attack and damage value. It reads, “ SIGNATURE MOVE: PEOPLE’S ELBOW: CLOSE: Improved Movement: Characters. If The Rock has 1 action token, move him up to 2 squares then make a close attack, modifying attack +1. If he hits, friendly characters modify damage +1 when attacking that hit character this turn. (Including this attack’s damage)” And because it’s a close action it can be combined with Charge. So he can move up to 6 squares and make a close attack with an 12 Attack Value that will do 4 damage if it hits (this doesn’t include his Perplex).

Tombstone Piledriver

1. WWE013 Undertaker (100 points)- I actually like the Rock’s dial a little better than the Undertaker’s (though he’s no slouch), but the Undertaker will be on more successful teams due to his popular Monster and Mystical Keywords. In all of the Pauper winning teams over the past few weeks, the Undertaker has been the most popular figure. He’s most often seen with fellow monster Onslaught.

The Undertaker’s starting dial features Sidestep, Submission Hold (similar to Poison with Immobile thrown in), Invulnerability, Outwit and 4 Printed Damage. He has the only stop click in the set besides Eddie Guerrero and it stops his dial on a blue click number which (like his starting click) make him immune to ranged attacks and Outwit. That’s really helpful for preventing a KO when he’s that far down his 9 click dial. Beyond that his signature move Tombstone Piledriver is really good and can give him up 14 Attack and 6 Damage depending on the circumstances. It reads “ Signature Move: Tombstone Piledriver: CLOSE: If Undertaker has 1 action token, make a close attack. Modify attack and damage +1 for each action token on the target, and an additional attack +1 if the target has Immobile.

That’s enough to make the Undertaker the Heavy Weight Champion of this set.

But wait what’s this?

My gawd King!

A new contender has entered the ring! He’s saying that he’s actually going to be the most popular piece from the set. It’s turning into real slobber knocker. The Undertaker is down! He rises from the dead… And gets knocked down again. He’s out cold.

We have a new Heavyweight Champion of this set!

It’s…

1. WWE111 WWE Ring (5 points) – This will definitely be the piece from this set that you will end up seeing the most. It’s as powerful as the boxing ring in a slightly different way.

It reads:

Ropes exist along the edge of the Ring. (When you knock a character back into the Ropes, you may choose that their knock back path continues in the opposite direction back along that same path.)
 Once per turn, you may reroll the close attack of a friendly character in the Ring.
 Once per turn, you may reroll the range attack of an opposing character outside the Ring that’s targeting a friendly character inside the Ring.

 Consolation: “At the beginning of the game, choose a friendly character. Once per game, you may reroll that character’s attack. Once per game, you may reroll an attack targeting that character.

So if you take a powerful long range attacker like 125 point Onslaught and put him in the ring then you get a free use of Prob Control ( that can’t be outwitted or otherwise stopped – even by pulsewave) when anyone outside the ring shoots at him. If they get in the ring with him then Onslaught gets to reroll his own attack rolls when he targets that figure with a close attack. That’s huge advantage for only 5 points.

That’s it for this set review. Leave a comment below to let me know what you thought of my picks (including my suprise #1.)

 

 

 

 

What’s the plural for multiple Onslaught? (Or a top ten list of the best figures in X-men the Animated Series)

Some Notes about the set:

  • You can largely ignore the small figures. In my opinion, the Colossal figures are where all the fun is.
  • Robots might be meta now that thanks to all the new effective pieces from this set.
  • Brotherhood might be meta now (yes really).
  • Wolverine and beast are pretty good, but the rest of the regular x-men didn’t wow me.

The Honorable Mentions

5. XDPSG022 Mojo (75 points) – The first of many figures on this list with my favorite new trait, behind the scenes. It reads, “Behind the Scenes: Mojo can’t be targeted by opposing characters 5 or more squares away.” It prevents even probability control  from being used against Mojo unless the target is at short range. Beyond that Mojo at 75 points is a really nice support piece featuring a combination of sidestep, TK, and perplex.  As the game progresses he’ll be able to make use of his last trait to devastating effect. It reads, “More Action!… Ratings are Dropping!: Whenever a character misses all targets of their attack, give Mojo a Bored token. // FREE: Remove 2 Bored tokens to either place Mojo anywhere on the map -or- make an attack.” It doesn’t take  much for most teams I run to produce misses. The fact that later in the game this guy can attack twice in a turn or teleport anywhere on the board as a free action is nuts.

4. XDPSG001b Stealth Sentinel (100 points) –  With very good values on attack or stealth and free action smoke cloud on defense, Stealth Sentinel brings a lot to the table. His ability to strike from range and then hide anywhere on the map is awesome. He also has the ability push with Colossal stamina and then immediately heal himself by changing modes.  On offense his two stop clicks offer extra protection and on defense his poison offers another way to attack difficult to hit characters.

3. XDPS048 Jason Wyngarde (75 points) – He’s immune to outwit, has leadership that hits anywhere on the board, and there is a good chance he can mind control the entire opposing team each time he uses it. Hellfire club teams may be a thing, but he’s more likely to get use out of his brotherhood keyword. However the best reason to run this guy is his trait which reads, “Psionic Illusion: FREE: Choose a character on your sideline of 150 points or less (on their highest-point line). Generate a bystander printed on that character’s card. Each bystander generated this way has [MAX 1]. You may activate this ability only twice per game.” Dropping tokens on someone as a free action is just awesome. His battle cry is, “Have an Old Lace to the Face.” 

2. XDPSG003 Nimrod (275 points) – While not much of a primary attacker because of his lack of move and attack options, he may have a future as a One Man Army. If you play him at 175 your opponent could ignore him and stay out of range, but if he’s the only piece on the board then your opponent has to start attacking him. That’s when they’ll face his defensive trait, “Running Comparative Evaluation of Reference Data: When Nimrod is attacked and would be hit, you may roll 2d6. If your roll is equal or higher than the attacker’s attack roll, Nimrod evades that attack and after resolutions deal the attacker damage equal to their printed damage value.” From there it’s a roll off. If you can out roll your opponent then they will never touch you. If they out roll you, then you won’t have a good day. This sort of character doesn’t work for me, but seems to work against me so I am including it on this list.

1. XDPS043b Mr. Sinister (40 points) – He is the least likely of the danger room pieces to be used because of his lack of the brotherhood keyword. However, on robot theme teams he’s practically a must play. He boasts outwit that sees through stealth and poison for close encounters. On defense he has stealth, shape change, and energy shield deflection to go along with his practically being immortal from the danger room trait. So the 5 hits he needs to be KOed will likely take well more than 5 attempts from your opponent. He’s a stealthy outwitter that we’ve loved in the past for 30 points (like ADW007 Black Panther) except he’s 40 points and they added everything but the kitchen sink. In any game where outwit matters, he’ll be the best piece on your team.

The Top Ten:

10. XDPSG023a Shadow King (150 points) – He has a the Power Cosmic TA and and the Brotherhood keyword which I don’t think is really justified for this character, but hey if the designers are going to throw us a bone we might as well use it. The TA he has means if he were to ever gain additional powers from another source, those powers couldn’t be outwitted (more on that later). On defense he has the behind the scenes trait, can reduce penetrating damage, invulnerability, and probability control. On offense he ignores stealth, has a phasing/triple target mind control combo, and pulse wave to discourage people from getting 4 spaces or closer to him (which is required by his behind the scenes trait).

9. XDPSG005 Exodus (75 points) – The hero of many sealed teams. He has running shot and pulse wave (which is always dangerous) backed up by his special leadership power “Named By Magnus Himself to Lead Mutants Forward: Leadership. When Exodus uses it and succeeds, instead of the normal effect, you may remove an action token from up to 3 adjacent friendly characters that each share a keyword (with him). If you do, until your next turn modify Exodus’s combat values +1 for each token removed.” I played a 400 point brotherhood theme team on release day and several times I got +2 to all my stats just before doing a running shot/pulse wave. It was not good (for my opponent). His printed defense is just 18 with toughness, but he is standard size so you can hide him behind other tougher brotherhood characters. He brings one other unique trait to the team more powerful than others like it (way better than WCR008.1E Magneto), “Genoshan Force Field: At the beginning of the game, choose 2, 4, 6, or 8 to be X. // When a character more than X squares away would move within X squares of Exodus and wasn’t given a MOVE action, that character stops moving. When a character more than X squares away attacks one or more characters within X squares of Exodus, modify their attack -1.” So your opponent can move through it, but can’t use hypersonic, charge, or running shot without stopping at the chosen range. The range you pick is based heavily on their team. You can make charge and hypersonic almost useless, or at the very least give +1 ranged defense to your whole team.

8. XDPS019 Amelia Vought (45 points) – The only acolyte to have the brotherhood keyword, she is the ultimate mastermind character who also brings perplex with her.  Her trait reads “Mutant Messiah: At the beginning of the game, for all characters with this trait, choose a friendly character with the Acolytes or Brotherhood of Mutants or X-Men keyword. That character can use Mastermind, but only to choose characters with this trait.” So she gives mastermind to certain pieces, but she also has another trait to go along with it, “TRANSMUTE OUT OF DANGER: Super Senses. Once per turn, when Amelia Voght or an adjacent friendly character would take 3 or more damage, you may give that character two action tokens to take 1 unavoidable damage instead. If you do, after resolutions you may place that character in a square adjacent to her current square.” For example, if Shadow King was the mutant Messiah and Phoenix Psychic blasts him for 7 damage, you could mastermind the damage to Amelia and if Amelia had no action tokens, she would take 1 unavoidable damage from the attack and 1 damage from getting two action tokens and pushing.  Your Shadow King would be completely untouched. If Brotherhood becomes a constructed powerhouse (for the first time ever) she will likely be the reason.

7. XDPS047 Jean Grey (75 points) – Currently the meta consists of 75% cosmic teams and 25% of teams from all the other keywords combined. She is one of two pieces in this set to have that keyword (Dark Phoenix is the other). She has limited outwit and is a strong mind controller because of her trait, “Inner Circle Club: Black Queen: Outwit, but only to choose a black power or a special power. // Mind Control. When Jean Grey uses it as RANGE, modify attack +1 and she may instead target any number of characters of lower point value. (Must still be opposing and within range and line of fire.)” She pairs well with friendly mind controllers Jason Wyngarde, or Kobik thanks to her trait “Jason Wyngarde Has Shown Us the Way: Sidestep. Other friendly characters can target Jean Grey when using Mind Control.” And she could also be used as a bomb to be sent directly at your opponents because of her special power, “The Phoenix Unbound: STOP. Invulnerability, Power Cosmic Team Ability, . When this click is first revealed, after resolutions deal 3 damage to all other (friendly and opposing) characters within 6 squares. // POWER: Replace Jean Grey with XDPS #G020 Dark Phoenix on click #25.” 3 damage with no die rolls is awesome and it gets past things like stop clicks or the danger room trait since the damage does not come from an attack. However despite all of the various ways to use her, I predict you will mostly be seeing her as a popular call-in.

6. XDPSG018 Wendigo (15 points) – The second most powerful “vampire dial” ever made. his trait reads, “Ancient Mystical Curse: Colossal Stamina, Steal Energy. When Wendigo uses Steal Energy, he may heal past his starting line.” He has steal energy on every click which pairs well his special movement power, “In the Mountains, No One Hears You Scream: Charge, Flurry. When Wendigo ends his movement, after resolutions he may make a close attack but only to target a character with a Wounded token.” So imagine running a couple of these at 15 points each. If your opponent targets them right away they will die pretty easily and you’ll be out 30 points. But if they don’t get targeted right away, they will run amok. Every turn your opponent has to concentrate his attacks on the rest of your 270 point army the wendigos will grow and hurt things until they become a major threat.  All from a 15 point investment each.

5. XDPS011b Magneto (50 points) – Arguably the most powerful of the three danger  room pieces (depending on what you are facing). This is a 50 point ranged attacker who could raise his attack value to a 14 via his ranged combat expert. He also has dual target and psychic blast to make sure his damage sticks against almost any two targets in the game. Sure he likely won’t kill the other teams primary attacker, but he will weaken them. That’s what he is for, doing two 2 or 3 damage to the other teams most expensive piece while being relatively safe from attack himself. Even the best pieces are noticeably weaker 2 or 3 clicks off their top dial. (unless your a 300 point juggernaut)

4. XDPSG007 Juggernaut (100 points) – I have been waiting since the Infinity challenge set for them to make a really good Juggernaut, it’s only taken them a little over 17 years. He’s secretly my favorite comic book character and Kuruth from fear itself was the last playable Juggernaut we got. He was noticeably absent from both the Xavier’s School and Re-genesis sets.

This Juggernaut will probably the most play at 100 points, but with a good team to back him him up he’s dangerous at 200 points as well. At 300 points he won’t win nationals this year, but he’s still not really a “casual” piece. What makes him so deadly? First, he attacks exactly like the Juggernaut should by running straight through all terrain and smashing whatever is on the other side with his trait, “Mass Destruction: Super Strength. When Juggernaut is given a MOVE action, after resolutions destroy all adjacent pieces of blocking terrain, then he can use Quake at no cost.” The second thing that makes him so deadly is that so many powers just plain don’t work against him. His special defense reads, “Shielded by My Helmet: Colossal Stamina, Invincible. Juggernaut has PROTECTED: Incapacitate, Mind Control, Outwit, Pulse Wave.” In addition to all of the listed powers, exploit weakness and psychic blast won’t help you because of his invincible. If you want to KO him, you’re going to have to get through his clicks the hard way.  The third reason Juggernaut is so deadly, is that he has multiple ways to heal and remove tokens from himself. One of his traits reads, “My Mutant Brothers and Sisters: Once per turn when an effect other than clearing removes an action token from Juggernaut, after resolutions heal him 1 click.” So removing a token with leadership or removing a token by rolling 10  or better while attacking (Brotherhood TA) also both heal him 1 click of health that turn. And he has a 3rd trait that will do more of the same, “City-Wide Rampage: If Juggernaut destroyed 3 or more pieces of blocking terrain during one of his actions, after resolutions remove an action token from him.” Finally Wizkids has given us a piece worthy of his motto, “Nothing can stop the unstoppable Juggernaut.”

3. XDPSG023b Storm (25 points) – As a 25 point second (or third) attacker you’ll never see better at that point cost. She has a 2 stage colossal retaliation that reads, “Colossal Retaliation: Mind Warp: FREE: If no friendly character has been placed this turn, choose an opposing character that attacked Storm or damaged a friendly character since your last turn. Place Storm such that she can make a close attack targeting the chosen character then do so. If she hit, after resolutions she can use Mind Control at no cost as RANGE, modifying attack +3, to target the hit character and up to two others (within range and line of fire).” She has another trait that also gives her an additional free action she can use every turn,Summon a Vortex of Wind: Energy Shield/Deflection. // FREE: Choose up to 3 opposing characters within 6 squares and line of fire, then roll a d6. Knock back each of the chosen characters a number of squares equal to the result.” So this 25 point character can free action to retaliate and punch someone, then if she hits use triple target mind control on anyone within range (ignoring characters for targeting), then she force blasts up to 3 characters within 6 squares of her and she still hasn’t made a costed action that turn. At that point she could attack (unlike most retaliators she doesn’t have colossal indifference), or just run away to do everything again later. Unfortunately, just like with the Jean Grey chase we will probably see her most as a popular call in piece. 

2. XDPSG006 Onslaught (125 points) – My favorite new primary attacker in the set and largely overlooked so far. On defense he has the behind the scenes trait, shape change, probability control (that sees through characters), Invulnerability, and PROTECTED: Mind Control, Outwit, and Penetrating/Psychic Blast. On offense he has starting 4 damage, Improved Targeting: Hindering/Characters, and his Psychic Juggernaut trait says, “// Once per turn, Onslaught can use Incapacitate as FREE -or- Mind Control as FREE -or- Telekinesis as FREE.” He also has two TAs to help him. He can be healed with the X-man TA (not likely) or remove a token from himself when his a roll is 10 or more with the brotherhood TA (way more likely). The thing that holds him back the most is his keywords (only armor and monster), however because he isn’t unique you can run two of him. I think 2 Onslaught (125 points each), Dr. Frankenstein (30 points), Carnage (10 points), and 10 points of ID cards, will be a strong meta team in the coming year.  (2 or 3 Wendigos in place of Dr. Frankenstein and Carnage isn’t a bad way to go either.)

1. XDPSG020 Dark Phoenix (30 points) – *Writer’s note: At the time of this writing it is assumed that Dark Phoenix heals every time she hits for 4 damage or KOs something. IE 4 KOs from a single action is 4 clicks of healing. Hitting for 4 damage and KOing something in a single action is 2 clicks of healing. If that changes then her position on this list would change.*

Dark Phoenix is the most powerful “vampire dial” ever made. With just a little bit of perplex to help her she will quickly turn from a small 30 point long range attacker into something that will eat his whole team. Her healing trait reads, “Feeding On Life Forces: When Dark Phoenix KO’s an opposing character, or an opposing character takes 4 or more damage from her attack, after resolutions heal her 1 click. She may heal past her starting lines this way but can’t be healed in any other way.” After 9 clicks of healing she becomes literally a 300 point character. How does she get that healing? The best way is killing off bystanders. Her trait says KO anything, so bystanders count towards that healing. Even better, it doesn’t say KO an opposing piece so if you have something low in health or a bystander run those into where she is doing a colossal retaliation and heal a click for each one you KO. Her colossal retaliation reads “Colossal Retaliation: Child of Light And Darkness: FREE: If no friendly character has been placed this turn, choose an opposing character that attacked Dark Phoenix or damaged a friendly character since your last turn. Place Dark Phoenix such that she can make a close attack targeting the chosen character then do so also targeting all other characters (friendly or opposing) within 3 squares. Hit characters are given an action token and each dealt 2 penetrating damage instead of normal damage.” There aren’t many bystanders that X-men generate that I can think of, but the cosmic keyword has AIG025P Groot. For twenty points you get 2 bystanders, a one click Groot, and your opponent gets a bystander. All of these can be fed to Dark Phoenix. At my local shop one of the guys recently played Dark Phoenix along with two AIG025P Groot and AI049 Photon. The results were frighteningly effective.

Heavy Is the Head That Wears the Crown!! (Or, an Article About My Experiences at the 2019 Summer Michigan Wizkids Open!!)

So the newest Michigan Wizkids Open Champion has just been crowned, and the winner is… Me!!! It could be luck, it could be my awesome play, or it could just be because the Canadian nationals were on the same day and the normal Toronto crew was absent. But whatever way you slice it, I won and I’ll take it!

[EDITOR’S NOTE: Clearly it was luck!! Just kidding. I kid… ]

But enough self aggrandizing for now, let me tell you about…

My Team

ABPI011 Ant-Man – (30 points) My second favorite member of the team. His defenses are top notch for his point cost and he made a wonderful secondary attacker with a surprising amount of KOs on the day, but the real reason to play him is his ability to make anyone else on my team small. This allowed for excellent mobility by letting any of the other three characters carry each other. My favorite move was shrinking and carrying a double-token-ed Kobik up to an opposing character and then having her use her cube to give that character an action token when they thought they were safe. It also solved a lot of line of sight issues by shrinking my guys to let Kobik or Hulk see who they needed to see.

ABPI014 Hulk – (125points) The damage dealer of the team, and also the damage absorbing member of the team. His 12 attack and 5 damage made opponents fearful, but it’s the amount of clicks of life he had combined with his healing that truly made him great. Several times during the day he hit for 5 and 6 damage (often while outwitting defense before the hit). And opponents hated how he just wouldn’t die. With reducers on every click an opponent would have to bring psychic blast, outwit, or the raw damage output of someone like Thanos to even have a shot at knocking out Hulk. He has 8 clicks of life and heals for 1 the turn after he’s hit. Opponents would end up having to effectively go through 10 or 11 clicks of life before they finally saw the Hulk be KOed. 

ABPI021 Ayo – (30 points) The easiest of my team to KO. She had some moments to shine and made a good piece to use carry others with Ant-Man around, but overall she paled in Comparison to Ant-Man and she was exactly the same amount of points. Her biggest blades roll all day was 3 points of damage.

ABPI069 Kobik – (100 points) The best member of my team. I’d read about her exploits at nationals this year, but I hadn’t ever played her or even seen her in person. She has a distinct learning curve, but once you get the hang of her she is everything they said she was. Whether it was using dual target mind control from 11 range, or taking away Power Cosmic AND Mystics TA, or giving someone an action token (and pushing damage) with her item – she was worth the the hype. I was not a believer before today, I am now.

ABPI069T Hi, I’m Kobik – (15 points) Kobik’s cosmic cube was the real star of the show. It’s what makes her so broken. All three options it provides are great and as free actions with no chance of having to roll dice to avoid taking damage (like both of the set’s gauntlets), there is no reason not to use this every turn. I now believe that this is the most powerful item in the set (and that’s really saying something).

Total: 300 points

The Games

I ended up going 6 and 1 for the day only losing versus a team featuring both the Thanos Ultra Chase and Taskmaster in round round 1. Five of the wins were 300 to 0 or 300 to 30 (losing only Ayo).

The Semifinals

Versus:

  • ABPI074 Thanos (160 points)
  • ABPI061 Taskmaster (100 points)
  • ABPI005 A.I.M. Red Squad (20 points)
  • ABPI007 Wakandan Scientist (15 points)
  • 295 points total

This was versus the same Thanos team that I had lost to 300 to 0 in round 1. I was determined not to make the same mistakes twice. He won map roll and we played on Amok Time. My team is close combat focused and on this map I was in danger of getting killed by ranged attacks before I ever got near his team. I courageously hid in a corner behind a pillar until he got to about mid map with only Kobik sticking out. I managed to land a dual target mind control when he got to within 11 of me, but missed with Thanos and had Skeet roll impervious against Taskmaster. On his turn he gave Taskmaster running shot and ridiculously modified stats and tried to attack Kobik. She hit shape change and he had no other targets. Then I sprang into action on my turn. Hulk was shrunk by ant man and carried up to Taskmaster by Kobik. Kobik used her item to give Taskmaster a second token so he couldn’t do anything the next turn. Ayo carried Ant Man up to base Thanos. Kobik gave both Thano’s TAs to Hulk so Thanos lost willpower. On my opponents turn he he could do anything with Taskmaster except chose combat reflexes. Thanos faced the decision of pushing to try to attack Ant-man because he already had one action token. He chose to pass the turn. On my next turn Hulk outwitted combat reflexes and brought taskmaster down to his last click. Then one of my 30 point attackers finished Taskmaster off. The rest of the game went well from there. Kobik eventually made it over to Thanos and kept adding action tokens every turn while simultaneously denying him willpower. The Hulk eventually killed everyone except Skreet (who was killed by a mind controlled Thanos). The game ended in a 300 to nothing victory.

The Finals

Versus:

  •  ABPI010 S.H.I.E.L.D. Diplomat (20 points)
  • ABPI011 Ant-Man (30 points)
  • ABPI012 Crystal (50 points)
  • ABPI021 Ayo (30 points)
  • ABPI022 A.I.M. White Squad (20 points)
  • ABPI041A Falcon (60 points)
  • ABPI056 Kang, the Conquerer (80 points)
  • 300 points total

This was another team I had played earlier in the day. Our first match was pretty even until Hulk KO’d his Ant-Man and I used his Ant-Man to turn the tide of the battle. He won Map Roll and we played on the Docks, which features a large Elevated Terrain feature in the middle. He advanced up and created a time portal before I could do anything, but once any of his guys got within 11 squares, Kobik started taking shots at them from range (Ignoring Elevated) with her dual target Mind Control. Unfortunately for me, that only resulted in Redwing hitting Falcon for 1.

The next turn my opponent had Falcon use Hypersonic Speed to attack Kobik. A miss. On my turn, Hulk charged out and knocked Falcon to his stop click. My opponent had been waiting for Hulk to come into range and on his turn he had Kang Teleport and then use Running Shot to get to the edge of the elevation and shoot Hulk for 4 Penetrating damage. Then Crystal flew in and used free action Quake to damage both my 30 point characters. By blocking the stairs, Kobik couldn’t get next to Kang and give him action tokens–a smart move on my opponents part!

The match remained close as Kang KO’d Hulk with only a few minutes remaining, and then Ayo immediately after. However, I responded next turn by KOing his Ant-Man and then (in the same turn) using that Ant-man (now friendly to my force) to KO Crystal. In the end I won 190 to 155. I lost Hulk and Ayo and he lost everyone except Kang and Ayo.

Conclusion

For my first WKO Event win, I received the following LE’s: Ambrose Chase, Reverse Flash, Flash, and Steve Trevor. I also pulled a Kobik today that I am going to use repeatedly until she is retired. And most importantly of all, I got sweet, sweet, bragging rights until the next WKO comes around.

See you then!!

Does anyone else remember the Rebirth set? (Or a top ten list of the best figures in Rebirth)

So it’s been some time since the heavily anticipated Black Panther and the Illuminati set dropped, I thought I’d try something a little different. We totally missed publishing a top 10 for Rebirth due to reasons that don’t really matter to most of our Heroclix readers. So while you are spending countless hours thinking about who wears what piece of Infinity bling best,  here’s a little something to entertain you. Since this article is months late, lets skip the honorable mentions (Prez Rickard, Dolphin, Lex Luthor, Nightwing, Billy Batson) and just go right into the Top 10.

10. RE044 Shade, The Changing Girl (45 points) – She’s a one trick pony, but it’s a heck of a trick. Her special white power reads “SHE JUST KIND OF SHOWS UP: Phasing/Teleport, Plasticity. POWER: Place Shade, the Changing Girl in any square with an (unheld) object.” On turn 1 an opponent’s team is completely immune to any shenanigans, but there are no rules protecting objects on the field. So if you get the first turn you can teleport to the opposing team’s best equipment and sit on it. She has 6 clicks and traited shape change to (hopefully) survive the fury this will generate in your opponent. And if she’s backed up by her friends AIG025P Groot or TMTG006P Mangog, it may be better for your opponent to just let that equipment go.

9. RE013 Cyborg (75 points) – There’s no special trick or combo with this guy, he’s just really useful on the battle field and well rounded on both offense and defense. He’s a great secondary attacker that brings support options as well. There is something useful for him to do on every click. He’s the definitive version of the character for me. Did you hear that Wizkids? You got this one right, no need to make any more of him. (unless it’s the “Teen Titans go” version)

8.  RE031 Batman (85 Points) – It’s not very often you get an affordable playable figure with the Outsiders TA, but this one fits the bill. He will be completely untargetable at range on any map you’d likely ever choose to run him on. He’s not going to to be a big damage dealer with only 3 printed damage, but his combination of outwit, Outsiders TA, and double target incapacitate means that your opponent can’t just ignore him. This is a Batman that beckons opponents to follow him into the shadows. I really like that flavor.

7. RE001 Deathstroke (100 points) – This figure was the M.V.P. on many sealed teams during the Rebirth release tournament. He’s a great offensive figure with options to use both running shot and charge. Even better he’s got the ability to deal penetrating damage while using either one. His defense is nothing special, but the ability to heal two clicks after KOing an opposing figure should definitely come in handy.

6. RE068 Barbatos (200 points) – This is the only one of the Dark Knight Metal chases that I would run at full points. His ability to phase through walls and attack with Psychic Blast is just devastating on indoor maps or around terrain like the boxing ring. Especially if an opposing team can’t see through stealth to make any attacks in return. His special damage power is also ripe for abuse. It reads, “SO FALLS THE REALM OF LIGHT: Opposing characters within 6 squares that can use Outwit, Perplex or Support can use Battle Fury.” His biggest downfall is that he is a giant and thus can’t have equipment.

5. RE063E The Dawnbreaker (75 points) – He’s a capable secondary attacker and brings the monster keyword their best taxi ever thanks to his Green Lantern TA. His starting invincible and “WE WILL NOT HIDE IN THE SHADOWS ANYMORE” trait will *hopefully* keep him safe. But, the real reason to run him is “NIGHTMARE CONSTRUCTS: Barrier. Whenever an opposing character generates one or more bystanders, after resolutions you may generate the same bystander(s). These bystanders you generate modify combat values +1 this game and have [MAX 1].” Medusa hair bystanders, walking wood, Dawg, and Skreet are some of the competitive tokens out there that are seeing play on popular teams and now they can be your opponents Nightmare (see what I did there). 

4. RE037BE Black Adam (100 points) – To quote hcrealms user BionicBoy, “This is a highly effective and mobile starting line. Very easy to heal back up to full as well.” He got that right. This guy saw some tournament wins when he first debuted leading some JSA teams. Now that the Jokers wild set has retired from Modern he’s lost some tools, but he’s still an effective attacker and ID summoning virtuoso. The ability to move up to 8 and still summon an ID call in after that is unmatched in modern.

3. RE062E The Murder Machine (100 points) – Everyone knows about ADW Hawkeye and Earth X Vulture, here’s DCs version of those killing machines. The big difference with this guy is that he doesn’t to move after he attacks and kills something, so his next target better be nearby. What he gets in return are something the other two can’t boast – a defense that doesn’t wilt at the first sign of being attacked. He’s also got prob control and that big starting 4 damage to go along with his 7 range and improved targeting: blocking  terrain. His ability to use energy explosion and dual targets should not be overlooked because KOing even the weakest bystander will allow him to attack again.

2. RE055E Starfire (50 points) – Obviously this isn’t a very long dial, but her stop click will make the dial long enough that your opponent will likely aim for a better target. If you ignore her, you’ll face her running shot and pulse wave combo. If you don’t ignore her, you could land her on that stop click and face flurry with 4 damage! She also had Quintessence at 50 points before the Elders of the Universe came along and made that sort of thing seem normal. Look for her to be a popular second (or third) attacker on cosmic teams.

1. RE052E Mister Oz (40 points) – Part Unseen and part God of TK, Mister OZ gives your team unparalleled TK while simultaneously nerfing that same power for your opponent. If you’ve got an attacker without good movement abilities then this is your guy to fix that issue. And once your attacker makes it into battle, his 12 range prob control that sees through everything will help make sure the battle goes your way. Expect him to be a staple of cosmic teams for years to come.

 

Black Bolt’s Gas Is Deadlier Than His Voice. (Or, A Top Ten Set Review Earth X!!)

 Earth X

Some Notes About the Set:

Sinister Six

  • Don’t let the inclusions of Black Panther, Hulk, Cap, or Iron Man fool you – This is a Spider-man set. Most of the pieces revolve around him which is weird since I don’t remember the comic revolving exclusively around him.

Miles Morales

  • They finally gave a us a great Mile Morales figure… almost.  EAX037b Spider-man has powers and abilities that represent Miles perfectly, but the keywords seem like they are describing another character altogether (Most people think they seem like they are for Spider-man 2099). So for those of you waiting to create an awesome Champions team… better luck next time.

Hulk Earth X

  • The Sculpts are really well done this set! Daredevil and Hulk stand out in particular to me.
  • Wizkids suckered me in to spending more money than I otherwise would have. I traded for an SR Iron Man. He works best with the Map in the starter. So I bought a starter. Then I heard the Token Pack had the Iron Avengers on the back so I bought that too. In the end this SR will be costing me more than most Chases. I hope it’s worth it.
  • Below I am ranking the figures in this set, but the real winners are the equipment. In particular the Symbiote and the Goblin Glider will be Meta staples until they are retired.
  • I didn’t include him in the list below, but EAX021 Fancy Dan has gotten a lot of attention from some big HeroClix names. I haven’t figured out the best way to use this guy yet, but he may be a part of some very successful teams. Consider him an “unofficial” Honorable Mention…

Okay! Now on to some…

HONORABLE MENTIONS:

Fat Spidey

5. EAX015 Spider-Man (30 Points) – His special white power reads, “Everyone has Power, So My Only Responsibility is to My Daughter: Leap/Climb. When Spider-man moves, after resolutions you may choose a friendly standard character adjacent to a square he moved through. If you do, place that character adjacent and it can’t be given a costed action this turn.” That lets him serve as a Taxi pre-combat and then as an incredible re-positioning piece that can move any of your pieces to where they need to be in a fight, whether or not they started adjacent. Of course, the best reason to put him on this list is that he gives Spider-man Family key worded pieces their first TA to copy without breaking theme since 2014! Spidey fans, rejoice!

Medusa X.png

4. EAX060 Medusa (75 points) – Speaking of pieces that a are really good at re-positioning other pieces during a fight…

Her damage potential isn’t high and her defenses are soft, but she brings a lot to a build in other ways. She has a Special Power and a Trait that are worth mentioning here: “ Lethal Locks: Plasticity, Giant Reach: 3. Telekinesis as FREE, but replace all “6” with “3” in the text of the power,” and also “ Lockjaw’s Tuning Fork: FREE: Improved Movement: Characters, Elevated, Hindering, Blocking. Passenger: 2, but only to carry characters that share a keyword regardless of . Move up to 3 squares.

Essentially she can move herself up to 6 spaces in a turn as free actions and still make attacks with her range of three or giant reach of three and quake. She can also carry characters up to 3 spaces with her or TK them as free actions instead of using those powers on herself.

Pres Osborn

3. EAX029 President Osborn (50 points) – In truth, none of the characters with the New York Crime Boss Trait are bad, but President Osborn is the one that will see the most play. The Crime boss trait reads like this: “ New York Crime Boss: Leadership, Mastermind. When President Osborn uses Leadership and succeeds, instead of removing an action token you may generate two Hired Flunky bystanders (MAX 4).

What sets Osborn apart from his Mafia peers is that he has MUCH better keywords along with the unique ability to double Perplex his “bodyguard”. I can see that being abused to great effect.

Stegron

2. EAX038 Stegron (75 points) – So in the same set that brought us Sinister Syndicate figures that gain a huge buff when exactly 6 figures are on your team, we get this guy (with the same keywords) that can generate up to 3 bystanders. That seems really useful on a Syndicate team.

As for the figure himself, he’s slow and his lack of Willpower is something you will really lament. However, when he and his friends finally do catch up with the opposing team, they’ll bring a lot of pain for a very low 75 point cost.

Spidey A side

1. EAX037a Spider-man (90 points) – This is an unusual showing for Spider-man. Gone is the usual Charge or Hypersonic speed that we are used to seeing with him. In it’s place is running shot and incapacitate via his web shooters item. While the item is the worst in the set, the figure using it is pretty good (which makes him the complete opposite of EAX051 Venom).  Besides running shot the other thing that makes this guy stand out is a trait I don’t remember seeing before on any other piece – Collosal Retaliation on a standard size character. It reads, “ Protect My Family: FREE: If no other friendly character has activated this trait this turn, choose an opposing character that attacked a friendly character with the Spider-Man Family keyword since your last turn. Place Spider-Man such that he can make a close attack targeting the chosen character, then do so.” With a trait like that it’d be hard to justify not putting him on a Spider-Family theme team.

And now, on to the Top 10!

Earth X Loki

10. EAX058 Loki (150 points) – Okay, so Loki has some obvious problems for a 150 point character. No inherent move and attack. No Willpower. No obvious protection from Outwit.

So what makes him worth playing? His second Trait reads: “ In The Minds Of Mortals: Shape Change, Stealth. Once per turn, when a character of less points within line of fire makes an attack, you may reroll one die of that attack.” That means he gets a free use of a power like Probability Control (but better) every turn. That’s good, but not awesome until you combine it with the actual Probability Control he has top dial. Together it lets you reroll friendly or opposing dice twice in one turn and that can just be crushing to an opponent. Especially if you add some other fun reroll characters like Trelane, Renet Tilly, or The Unseen.

Some of his weaknesses can also be compensated for as well. That Stealth helps mitigate opposing Outwit and something like the Goblin Glider will give him all of the movement he could ever need. He can also be Carried, which will help keep his action token count low.

Beetle Pod

9. EAX035 Beetle (75 points) – According to Mugatu, the Sinister Syndicate is just So Hot Right Now.

And if you are going to play the Syndicate, it’s really hard to justify not including Beetle because of his Trait. It says: “Organizer Of The Sinister Syndicate: Leadership. When a friendly character within 6 squares replaces its attack value using the Sinister Syndicate team ability, modify its attack +1.”

Aside from that Trait, the Beetle figure is good, but not over powering. However, on a keyword team full of mostly close attackers, his ranged attacks are a nice change of pace.

Sandman

8.  EAX006 Sandman (50 points) – Don’t look now but they put a pick a power character into the common slot for this set. So his first click already has Sidestep, Super Senses, Shape Change, and Stealth as long as there are more 3 or more characters on a team. Assuming you move him around with a Taxi (like SFSM029 Overdrive) you can pick another power to add to the ones I’ve already mentioned. Most of the time that will be Invulnerable. Either way, those powers added together make the best array of defensive powers we’ve ever seen on a 50 point character.

Then, once it’s time to go on the offensive, he can drop the Invulnerability and choose either Charge or Flurry. I’ve already (during the Release Event) been on the receiving end of a Flurry attack from this character when it had 4 damage and 11 attack. That was an unexpected–and also very quick–game loss for me.

Black Bolt Earth x

7. EAX047 Black Bolt (150 points) – Officially one of the highest point characters in the set and also one of the best. His starting click with Hypersonic Speed and 5 damage is downright scary. Beyond that, he has a Trait that makes him practically immune to attack until he’s taken an action. It reads: “ONLY ONE MAN COULD MOVE THAT QUIETLY: When Black Bolt has no action tokens, lines of fire drawn to him are blocked.

You just need to find a find a good taxi like EAX060 Medusa or a vehicle (or LE Lockjaw!!) and you’ll maximize the effectiveness of the Trait. He also has a comic accurate Special Power on his last two clicks: “WOUND WITH A WHISPER, SHATTER WITH A SCREAM: Pulse Wave. When Black Bolt uses it, he can use Improved Targeting: Ignores Blocking Terrain and you may instead choose a number from 1 through 5 to be the range value for Pulse Wave (You don’t halve it and can’t modify it). After resolutions, destroy all blocking terrain within that use of Pulse Wave’s range.” Choosing your range combined with Running Shot makes it real easy to hit an opposing character with a 5 damage single target Pulse Wave.

Not bad for a figure that’s almost KOed.

Miles I Am

6. EAX037b Spider-man (75 points) – As I mentioned in the set notes, the keywords on this figure are disappointing, but the figure itself is not. Part Spider-man and part Batman, he’s just a well-rounded figure that delivers everything you’d want for his point cost.

For 75 points he comes with Indomitable and the ability to ignore everything while moving except for walls. He’s got consistently strong attack and damage values and the option of having Stealth to go along with his Outwit on his first few clicks. He’s also got Super Senses his whole dial (and it’s immune to Outwit). So he’ll be a stealthy support figure on your team until he’s ready to play the hero and then he’ll Charge in with that awesome 12 attack on his opening click.

Green Goblin.jpg

5. EAX050 Green Goblin (75 points) – It’s better to think of this guy as a version of The Flash rather than a typical Green Goblin piece. Gone is his traditional Running Shot.

Now, thanks to his Goblin Glider equipment, he has full dial Hypersonic Speed, which is also bolstered by the Sidestep printed on his dial. And unlike the Flash or most Green Goblins we’ve seen in the past, this piece starts with two clicks of Invulnerability on defense.

On Offense he starts with Precision Strike and moves to Energy Explosion down dial. It’s also worth noting that every click except his first and last clicks will have Perplex or Outwit. But the best part about this figure is his special Stop Click at the end. It reads: “IMPALED BY THE REMOTE CONTROL GLIDER:FREE: KO a Goblin Glider equipped to Green Goblin. If you do, modify attack +3 and make a range attack targeting a single opposing character that deals 3 penetrating damage instead of normal damage. If he misses, KO Green Goblin.

That’s one of the most comic accurate special powers I have ever seen. Even if you don’t hit, you earn tons of style points for using it.

Skull

4. EAX030 The Skull(40 points) – For 40 points you get a figure that does what no other figure ever has been able to do before. He can use Mind Control with unlimited range and he’s the cheapest figure ever to start with a 12 attack!

With all that going for him on offense, he’s a defensive pushover, right? Actually no. He also happens to be the cheapest figure ever to feature 2 Stop Clicks and those Stop Clicks have Mastermind.

His only weaknesses are having just one keyword and that fact that Mind Control isn’t always useful against every opponent every game. So some games he won’t be much help, but in other games this 40 point figure will be the most feared part of your 300 point Build.

Earth X Daredevil

3. EAX054 Daredevil (60 points) – The Heir Apparent to JW060 The Joker, Daredevil trades the Jokers almost complete inability to be killed for some increased offense. Where the Joker has 10 attack and 1 damage, Daredevil has 11 attack and 3 damage. That’s a huge upgrade. He also has some nice powers to go along with that increased offense. Hypersonic Speed, Quake, Blades Claws Fangs, or Plasticity and Poison can all be chosen after each time an opponent attempts to KO Daredevil.

On defense the only thing that will hurt Daredevil is an attack roll with a 6 in it. That means he will last a lot longer against a few big enemies than a lot of small enemies. It also means that things like Poison, pushing damage, Mystics damage, or Shredder Elite damage can never KO him.

Iron Man Earth X

2. EAX056 Iron Man (125 points) – This character is the best Bystander Token creator since JW050 The Penguin. And he brings new options to Avengers teams the likes of which they have never had before.

His real cost is actually 5 points more because you’ll always want to use his special map with him. With that map he can generate a Bystander as a free action most turns. You can chose to take Iron man into battle to make use of his Barrier or leave him in your starting area. Once he takes a hit, or enough Iron Avengers are KOed, he switches to a powerful attacker. He’ll have Running Shot 11 attack and 4 damage. Once he takes a few more damage from that point he gains Pulse Wave to go along with his Running Shot.

Venom Cap

1. EAX062 Captain Venom (75 points) – Captain Venom brings new power to the already powerful Monster keyword. To that end he’s got a Trait and a Special Power that both help monsters. The Trait states, “EDDIE, YOU’RE JUST THE MAN WE NEED:During game setup when establishing themed teams, you may treat the Monster keyword as a named keyword.” His Special Power is, “READY TO SERVE MY SPECIES:Leadership. When another friendly character with the Monster keyword attacks, modify its attack +1 if Captain Venom attacked this turn.”

His dial is also very good for the points and if he can make it to Close Combat without getting hit at Range then he will do well for your team. However the real reason he’s the number one figure in this set is the strength of the Monster Keyword. That keyword won the world Championship in 2018 and if Captain Venom has anything to say about it, they’ll be a favorite to repeat in 2019. And that’s why he’s the best figure in this set.

 

Agree? Disagree? Let me know in the comments below!!