Merry Christmas!! (Or, The 11TH Night of Clix-Mas!!)

spidey-christmas

Merry Christmas!! Happy Hanukkah! Happy Kwanzaa!!

Thank you so much for all of your support this year! Critical Missives continues to grow, and we have our readers to thank for that!

We hope this Holiday Season finds you all safe and prospering, and we look forward to all the excitement–Clix and otherwise–that 2017 will bring!

We’ve got one more Clix-Mas article coming (hopefully) tonight (Ninwashui’s DC Core Set Thought Experiment!), and sometime next week HypeFox will publish his Second Opinion on Joker’s Wild!

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

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Simply THE REST, Part 2!! (Or, With Apologies to Tina Turner Once More!!)(Or OR The Tenth Night of Clix-Mas!!)

[EDITOR’S NOTE: Okay, lemme see if I can remember all this: Ahem! Once again (and this time, with feeling!), we are shamelessly unleashing the 12 Nights of Clix-Mas! Tonight is Night 5! If you missed The First Night of Clix-Mas, you can read what it’s all about right here! Night 2 was the nascent edition of a new holiday scenario we’ve been cooking up and can be found… here-ish! Night 3 took a brief look back at Horrorclix. Night 4 was the debut of a new feature called “Overlooked” which examined some pieces from World’s Finest that don’t see quite as much play as they seemingly should… . And Night 5 was Part 1 of a brief 3-part series that examines how Heroclix would look if there were a Core Set released every year or two… And Night 6 saw HypeFox Theory-craft his own Marvel Heroclix Core Set! Night 7 saw Ninwashui calling an audible and promising to throw his hat in the ring and finally write an article! Night 8 featured Ninwashui ACTUALLY writing an article, although, strangely, not the one he promised… Night 9 subverted our old “Simply the Best” gimmick!]

Why wait ’til sometime after Clix-Mas to finish this article when we can do it right now?!

Without further ado…

 

sub-theme

WORST SUB-THEME

The Nominees:

Court of Owls (Joker’s Wild)

“A Cadre of Characters of a Mystical Origin” (World’s Finest)

Morlocks (Uncanny X-Men)

AND THE CRIT MISS GOES TO…

court-of-owls

The Court of Owls saga in the Batman books has drummed up a lot of interest in the Batman books since its inception a few years ago. Considering this, the Court gets surprisingly short shrift in Joker’s Wild.

For their first appearance in Heroclix, the Court gets… four figures (and only 3 different dials). To put that in perspective, Marvel’s jokey “Secret Empire” faction from Deadpool HAD THE SAME NUMBER OF DIALS!!

This seems like a wasted opportunity.

 

ari-figure

WORST FIGURE TO PULL IN SEALED (Rare, Super Rare, or Chase)

The Nominees:

WF043 MercuryRare25 Points

JW065 Bizarro AquamanChase50 Points

UXM061 ColossusChase120 Points

AND THE CRIT MISS GOES TO…

colossusaoa

At the end of the day, pulling a middling (for the points) close combat attacker WHO NEEDS ANOTHER CHASE TO USE HIS BEST ABILITY seems like it would be a tad bit disappointing, no?

Mercury is actually a solid piece for 25 Points, but he’s in a set where someone could potentially pull a World’s Finest Duo piece and play it at 300, if you pulled Mercury in your pack, good luck to you!

And we’ve already touched on why Bizarro Aquaman sucks so much.

 

WOrst Set.jpg

WORST SET OF THE YEAR

The Nominees:

Joker’s Wild

Batman v Superman

Uncanny X-Men

AND THE CRIT MISS GOES TO…

bvs

Outside of the Target Exclusive Supes, which has recently seen Meta play with the Brainiac ship (altough that has come to an end via a recent Wizkids ruling that’s too odd to go into here), there was really nothing in the “must-have” department for this set. Which is unusual for a movie tie-in set.

Part of the problem is that it was designed with no original Chases, even though every Marvel Movie Set has had one. Big missed opportunity there.

Joker’s Wild is really top-heavy, but overall it’s a better set than BvS. Same thing with Uncanny X-Men.

 

Okay!! There you have it. Those were the initial Crit Misses for 2016! I look forward to putting this list together next year! Until then, Stay Safe, Watch Where You Draw Your Lines of Fire and meet me right here tomorrow night for more Clix-Mas goodness!

Simply The REST, Part 1!! (Or, With Apologies to Tina Turner… Again!!)(Or OR, the Ninth Night of Clix-Mas!!)

[EDITOR’S NOTE: Okay, lemme see if I can remember all this: Ahem! Once again (and this time, with feeling!), we are shamelessly unleashing the 12 Nights of Clix-Mas! Tonight is Night 5! If you missed The First Night of Clix-Mas, you can read what it’s all about right here! Night 2 was the nascent edition of a new holiday scenario we’ve been cooking up and can be found… here-ish! Night 3 took a brief look back at Horrorclix. Night 4 was the debut of a new feature called “Overlooked” which examined some pieces from World’s Finest that don’t see quite as much play as they seemingly should… . And Night 5 was Part 1 of a brief 3-part series that examines how Heroclix would look if there were a Core Set released every year or two… And Night 6 saw HypeFox Theory-craft his own Marvel Heroclix Core Set! Night 7 saw Ninwashui calling an audible and promising to throw his hat in the ring and finally write an article! Night 8 featured Ninwashui ACTUALLY writing an article, although, strangely, not the one he promised… ]

simply-the-rest-gif

You pulled Bizarro Aquaman?

Longtime readers may remember “Simply the Best,” our year-end best-of gimmick wherein we hand out some Oscar-like “Critters” to the best Heroclix figures and concepts of the previous year, as well as recognize the best in genre entertainment and–most especially–memes.

[EDITOR’S NOTE: As noted in the above link“Critters” is (still) the current short name for the annual “Simply the Best” awards handing out by Critical Missives. It’s creepy. We know it’s creepy. We’re working on it. We’ve accepted it.]

While we skipped last year, we hope to hand out some 2016 “Critters” next month some time (invites to the nominees are currently in the mail).

Still, it occurred to us that you can’t have the Academy Awards without holding a Golden Raspberry Ceremony. That’s right–tonight, Critical Missives is proud to present our own version of the Razzies! It’s time for…

THE CRIT MISSES!!

[EDITOR’S NOTE: Sometimes I amuse even myself. Although skeptical readers might wonder why it took us the better part of three years to realize we had the perfect name for our own Razzies. To those readers, I can only say–hey, what’s that over there?!]

Without further ado…

 

worst-chases

WORST SET OF CHASES

The Nominees:

Age of Apocalypse Chases (Uncanny X-Men)

Bizarro Chases (Joker’s Wild)

First Marvel or DC Movie Set With No Chases (Batman V Superman)

AND THE CRIT MISS GOES TO…

age-of-apocalypse-banner

Sorry X-Folk. But the truth is, you guys managed to take a beloved chapter of X-Men history and turn it into some of the most boring Chases we’ve ever gotten. I mean, Sunfire was fine, except that was, roughly estimating, the 18th version of Sunfire we got JUST IN THAT SET!!

Wolverine was okay; Ninwashui swore up and down that Magneto was the best piece in that set, surpassing the likes of Iceman and Proteus. Then he reread Mags’s card AND LEFT HIM ENTIRELY OUT OF HIS TOP TEN.

But Colossus. Oh, sleepy, boring, crappy Colossus. Even the great Scott Porter was completely underwhelmed when he was just drooling to pull a Chase for his unboxing video and ended up with this doorstop.

Sure, Joker’s Wild gave us the walking poop-ka-bob that some folks call Bizarro Aquaman, but the truth is, most of the Bizarros are pretty good; Bizarro Joker is downright useful; and Bizarro Green Arrow is a straight Meta monster who can force your opponent to CHANGE THEIR ENTIRE STRATEGY WHEN THEY ATTACK YOU!!

And as much as it sucked that BvS didn’t have any official Chases, the Hobby Exclusive Bats and Target Exclusive Supes felt close enough to Chases anyway.

 

worst-prime-rib

WORST PRIME

The Nominees:

SFSM053B Kraven (Superior Foes of Spider-Man)

JW037B Looker (Joker’s Wild)

UXM053B Phoenix (Uncanny X-Men)

AND THE CRIT MISS GOES TO…

phoenix-2

The only upset here is that it wasn’t even that close.

Oh, you played Phoenix here? Well, she’s pretty much your whole team since she costs 250 Points, so enjoy that top dial 10 Attack. And heaven help you if your opponent has Stealth!

Phoenix is the type of tentpole that did well in, like, 2007. Unfortunately, she was created in the wrong era.

 

batman-and-robin

WORST COMIC-BOOK MOVIE

The Nominees:

Batman v Superman

Suicide Squad

X-Men: Apocalypse

AND THE CRIT MISS GOES TO…

suicide-squad-2

Wow was this bad. Batman v Superman gets killed a lot, but there were at least a few watchable scenes in that movie.

And X-Men Apocalypse had another cool(-ish) Quicksilver scene, which is more than I can say for our “winning” film.

Suicide Squad is just straight up bonkers. Not in a good way; no, it’s bonkers in more of a “What the #%$* were they thinking here?” And Will Smith was TRYING!! He was doing everything he could to charisma this movie into something watchable, but even he couldn’t save it.

I remember sitting in the theater when the group finally gears up, we’re finally (FINALLY) done with Act 1, except we’re not, because then freaking Katana shows up out of the blue for the first time in the movie seemingly so Joel Kinnaman can deliver one of the worst lines in modern movie history about her stupid sword that never really does anything.

Honestly, every scene feels like they shot the first draft of the script and then only used first takes.

This should have been so much better…

 

Okay!! Well, that’s enough for tonight! Sometime after Clix-Mas, we’ll revisit the Crit Misses and hand out a few more awards!

And remember to park it back here tomorrow night for more Clix-Mas goodness!!

 

The Joke Is On Us!! (Or, a Top Ten Set Review of Joker’s Wild!!)(Or OR The Eighth Night of Clix-Mas!!)

[EDITOR’S NOTE: Once again (and this time, with feeling!), we are shamelessly unleashing the 12 Nights of Clix-Mas! Tonight is Night 5! If you missed The First Night of Clix-Mas, you can read what it’s all about right here! Night 2 was the nascent edition of a new holiday scenario we’ve been cooking up and can be found… here-ish! Night 3 took a brief look back at Horrorclix. Night 4 was the debut of a new feature called “Overlooked” which examined some pieces from World’s Finest that don’t see quite as much play as they seemingly should… . And Night 5 was Part 1 of a brief 3-part series that examines how Heroclix would look if there were a Core Set released every year or two… And Night 6 saw HypeFox Theory-craft his own Marvel Heroclix Core Set! Night 7 saw Ninwashui calling an audible and promising to throw his hat in the ring and finally write an article!]

im-not-going-to-kill-you-joker

Actually, I’m not going to do much of anything in this movie! A-ha. A-ha-ha-haaa. Yeah.

Hello again! I feel like it’s been too long since I published an article, so I think tonight is as good a night as any to pop by.

[EDITOR’S NOTE: Wow. You only waited ’til Night 8 this year to actually contribute something? Welcome to the party, pal. I’ll just be over here, GENERATING THE FIRST SEVEN ARTICLES MYSELF!!]

Really? Oh, hey, great. Thank you. You really didn’t have to do that.

[EDITOR’S NOTE: Oh no, I REALLY DID!!]

Ahem. Well… thank you?

Anyway, so as not to waste any more time, I am jumping in feet first with… a full Top Ten Set Review!! And speaking of jumping in feet first, let’s get right to it with some…

Some Notes About the Set:

  • Overall Power Level of the set ? More than any other set I can remember, the power level of this set seems to vary widely.  For 50 points you can get Rare JW047 Killer Croc or Rare JW033 The Joker, who just flat aren’t very good. However, for that same 50 points you can get Chase JW066 Bizarro Green Arrow who can essentially nullify ranged attacks against your entire team.
  • To reiterate: for 45 Points, you can field Chase and noted turd-ka-bob JW065 Aquaman and just let your opponent know right away that you really aren’t into competing this game. Or for 5 more points, you can play an essentially unkillable JW060 Joker. Hmmm… Should I play the figure who can “make water” for one whole turn, or should I play the piece that changes how my opponent wants to come after my team? So hard to choose…
  •  I feel like 5 or 6 pieces in this set weren’t made with the same point system as the rest of the set just to sell it. In fact, I don’t think JW060V The Joker was made with any regard to the point system at all.

[EDITOR’S NOTE: You ain’t kidding!]

  • Comic Accuracy – Overall not great. This set gave us JW034 Harley Quinn, whose top dial 10 Movement Value with Hypersonic Speed matches FL001A The Flash. JW060V The Joker  can take more punishment than any Superman ever made. And JW041 The Specter only has a 4 click dial for 40 points.
  • Sub Themes:
    1. JSA – They may not reflect the power levels in of the characters in the comics well, but if you ignore that fact you have great filler pieces for a variety of teams. The “Past” keyword gets a huge bump this set to go along with a an already good list of characters like SFSM054 Devil Dinosaur (who was possibly my biggest Top Ten article miss ever.)
    2. Court of Owls – It seems on the surface that this might be a good team to run, but problems that aren’t obvious right away (like JW038 Talon not having the Underworld TA) make me wonder if this keyword will ever see tournament play. Their saving grace is that they all also share the Gotham City Keyword.
    3. Outsiders – The Outsiders TA has always been good, but in the past it’s seemed like most of the characters with it have had point values far too high for the value the character brought to the team. This set I could see most of the outsiders being worthy of tournament play. Any outsider not named JW054 Geo-Force or JW037B Looker (Prime) in this set is worth a look (See what I did there?).
    4. League of Assassins – The league had 4 pieces in this set. 3 of them are okay, but they probably won’t amount to much as a team because the new JW021 Ra’s Al-Ghul is pretty useless outside of sealed play.
    5. Suicide Squad – The Squad got 9 pieces in this set and they are the complete opposite of the Outsiders. Most of the pieces they got are terrible except for where those pieces also have keywords for other teams like JW044 Katana, and JW034 Harley Quinn.
    6. Gotham Underworld, Arkham Asylum, and Gotham City – The Batman villians have a similar keyword problem to the Justice League. There is the Justice League keyword and the Justice League of America Keyword. Usually figures don’t have both. They seem to give Batman villians Gotham City or Gotham City Underworld keywords at random. For example, Rare JW034 Harley Quinn has the Gotham City keyword and not Gotham City Underworld. The Common and Uncommon versions of JW002 Harley Quinn and JW018 Harley Quinn both have the Gotham City Underworld Keyword and not the Gotham City Keyword. Other characters have both. I’m also not sure why the Arkham Asylum Keyword exists. Those should all just be Gotham City Underworld. Taking all of that into account the Gotham City Underworld keyword did the best in this set, but with few fliers and a lack of the Underworld TA these villains still lack a reliable way to get battle other than walking there individually.

My Honorable Mentions:

talon

5. JW038 Talon 120 PointsRare: Talon would be much higher on this list except for three problems. At 120 points he lacks Willpower. 3 damage is low for a primary attacker (yes I am aware of his precision strike). And, finally, it’s hard to keep a good amount of JW005A Court of Owls Initiates with him unless you choose to ignore Theme.

He does have a lot of good points with this character (like Improved Movement, Traited Stealth, and conditional Mastermind) and with a lot of planning he may just work for you.

flash-jsa

4. JW036 The Flash35 pointsRare: He’s the cheapest Hypersonic Speed character in Modern and almost the cheapest of all time. He’s completely a one trick pony, but at 35 points he really doesn’t need anything else to be worth playing. Beyond his Hypersonic Speed, his 12 Move, 11 Attack, and 18 Defense are great for the points.

Al Pratt Atom.jpg

3. JW022 The Atom25 pointsUncommon: This guy is the cheapest character ever printed with Close Combat Expert and 3 or more top dial Damage. He’s tied with JLTW204R The Trench for being the cheapest character to ever start with 17 Defense and Combat Reflexes. He makes a super effective team with JW025 Hawkman. He’s even somewhat pushable because he doesn’t lose any powers or Attack Value from Click 1 to 2. It’s possible this guy could start showing up as filler on tons of tournament teams the same way that FFJLTW007 Atomica does.

Lady Shiva.png

2. JW043 Lady Shiva 50 points Rare: One of the first ever figures with the Batman Enemy TA and a starting 12 Attack. She’s also the cheapest figure ever to start with a 12 Attack. Her Attack Value along with precision strike and flurry mean that she can hurt pieces well above her point cost. On defense she is eligible for the League of Assassins ATA and her special defensive power could keep her in the fight against pieces that need a help to hit her 19 defense in close combat. It reads, “I AM THE ULTIMATE TEST: Lady Shiva can use Combat Reflexes. Adjacent opposing characters can’t have their combat values increased when making close attacks.”

mr-freeze

1. JW049 Mr. Freeze 90 pointsSuper Rare: He’s somewhat similar to UXM051 Iceman. The differences are that he’s less offense and more defense. Iceman had Running Shot, two targets, and a 7 Range.

Mr. Freeze has sidestep, 1 target, and 5 range. They both give an action token and a marker to people hit from range. Both have a consistently high damage value of 3 their entire dial and Mr. Freeze’s version of the ice wall token does an additional penetrating damage. The real difference is on defense.

His last two clicks have the power, BACK TO REFRIGERATION: Mr. Freeze can use Toughness. At the beginning of your turn, heal Mr. Freeze a number of clicks equal to 3 minus the number of adjacent opposing characters.” That means that at the beginning of your turn (assuming he isn’t next to someone) he will heal three clicks without even using an action. It’s like he has a Regeneration power that guarantees you roll a 5 and doesn’t cost you an action! Keep in mind that he has damage reducers every click, so the chance of you seeing those clicks is reasonably high and then the opponent will have to go through those damage reducers for a second time. (or a third, or a forth, or…)


The Top Ten:

Batman Outsiders.jpg

10. FFJW001 Batman 75 points – Fast Forces: His Trait “STUDENT OF ALL MARTIAL ARTS” means that lowest Attack Value will be a 10 and his first two starting clicks will be at least a 12. (he gets +1 per adjacent character and he has zero range so if you are attacking you are adjacent to at least one enemy) His Traited Toughness, 18 starting Defense, full dial Combat Reflexes, and 7 click dial make him very hardy for a 75 point figure. On offense his “HIT YOU WITH MY HANDS AND FEET” is just ripe for abuse. It lets him attack all adjacent characters at once and unlike other similar powers, each hit is dealt normal damage not just printed damage. That means Perplex and Empower can help deal additional damage. Imagine you have 2 uses of Perplex for his Damage Value and b\Batman is next to 3 people. If he hits with his boosted 14 attack value, each target would be dealt 5 damage.

killing-joke-joker

9. JW059 The Joker140 points Super Rare: For some reason they decided that any Super Rare or Chase version of the Joker would be really hard to KO. This version is hard to even damage. He has Mastermind that you can’t bypass with Precision Strike thanks to his MAD AS A HATTER trait. You could Outwit it if he’s not in Stealth, but you can’t Outwit his best power because it’s a Trait and it’s not even on his card. The 10 point JW003A The Joker Thug printed in the same set has a trait that states, “THE JOKER IS THE KING OF GOTHAM: When building your force, The Joker Thug does not count against a themed team if your force has a character named The Joker on it. If an adjacent friendly character named The Joker is hit with an attack, The Joker Thug may become the hit target of that attack instead, even if it would be illegal.” Because of the keyword exception there is no good reason not to run a least few Joker Thugs with this Joker on every team. When they stand next to him, pulse wave is the only power in the game that will do damage to him. And even Pulse Wave will still stop at the Joker’s last click – which is a stop click with even more Mastermind.

On offense the Joker has Traited Poison that deals Penetrating Damage to lower point characters. Then on odd clicks he has Blades/Claws/Fangs and his Special THE KILLING JOKE!: The Joker can use Ranged Combat Expert and Improved Targeting: Ignores Characters. When The Joker hits with an attack, hit characters are each given up to 2 action tokens.” On his even numbered clicks he has the less exciting Precision Strike and Outwit, but that’s still a deadly powerset.

What keeps Joker from being higher on this list? Two things. The first is that he’s only able to KO people he can reach. By that I mean he has no move and attack ability, and as no improved movement. That means on offense you will often need to walk the Joker up to an opposing figure and  wait until the following turn to attack. In the meantime you have to hope that figure hasn’t moved out of your range or you might not be able to attack anyone the next turn either. A taxi or a figure with Telekenesis helps greatly with this. The second thing is that in order to remain untouchable, you will need to have several Joker Thugs at your side. The Joker has a 10 Movement, but the thugs only have a 6. The ideal situation would be to have the Joker carry two thugs by himself via the underworld TA. The problem is that he doesn’t have the underworld TA. The best ideas I could think of without breaking up your theme team are to either play WF059R Lex Luthor & Joker or play JLTW002 Catwoman. Neither seem like ideal options.

penguin-jw

8. JW050 The Penguin — 40 points — Super Rare: For 40 points you are getting a slowly building robot army that provides the opponent no points when killed, have no limitations on how many can be in play at once, and don’t even count against your actions unless they are attacking. Depending on what you are playing against, I would likely suggest leaving penguin in your starting area and making a JW050BTC Robo-Penguin (the ranged attacker) every other turn. He’s the new version of one of my favorite pieces AAOU007 Ultron Sentry, and he’s even easier to use. Penguin only has 4 clicks and really only Stealth to protect him, but you’ll have 260 points worth of your team left to do that job!

katana-jw

7. JW044 Katana75 pointsRare: Katana in this set is just an all around strong figure. She has Stealth and the ability to move through Hindering Terrain,. she gets stronger the first three times she KOs a character each game (which great against opposing figures that make tokens), and she has the Outsiders TA while still having a reasonable point cost. On offense her Charge and Exploit Weakness with 3 damage means that she can heavily damage almost any character. Adding the slash token to whomever she hits will make an opponent think twice about hitting her back the following turn. A real steal for the points.

Alan Scott.jpg

6. JW052 Green Lantern35 pointsSuper Rare: At only 35 points Green Lantern is a great taxi with 10 Movement, Flight, and Willpower. But unlike a lot of low cost Taxis, when he is not using his actions to move other characters, he can help turn the tide of battle.

His Trait GREEN LANTERN’S LIGHT gives him 1 Barrier token he can place each turn as a free action. He can also use Barrier normally and then again that turn a free action to place a total of 5 blocking terrain tokens. Especially on an indoor map, that could keep the opposing team from making any attacks against you on the following turn.

What I’ve just mentioned is plenty of value for 35 points.

However, he’s got two other tricks up his sleeve. First, he can make a wall instead of one of his Barrier tokens. What good does that do? Well if you place a wall between two characters, they are no longer adjacent. You can use that wall that to prevent Poison damage, block line of fire to help friendly pulse wave be move effective, prevent an opposing character from using Mastermind, prevent an opposing character from being carried, or allow a friendly character to automatically break away. His second trick is that opposing characters adjacent to any of his Light Wall or Barrier markers can’t use Stealth and modify their defense values by -1. So he can place a free action barrier token next to a stealthy character and now not only can your entire force target that character with Ranged attacks, but that (formerly stealthy) character will be at minus 1 defense the entire time!

Bizarro Joker.jpg

5. JW063 Bizarro Joker — 45 points — Chase: Bizarro Joker only has one purpose. He’s arguably the best tie up figure – ever. He has Traited Plasticity, a full dial of damage reducers, and two Stop Clicks. The trick is getting him next to at least two opposing figures before he takes too much damage from ranged attacks. If you can get him next to at least two opposing figures, then his Special Power “BIZARRO POISONwill heal him for at least two a turn. That healing, combined with his STOP clicks means that even if he is on his last click he will heal past his STOP clicks and as long as he isn’t damaged three times in a row, he can’t be KOed. Then your opponent will just be stuck. They can’t break away (Plasticity), kill Bizarro Joker (Stop Clicks and healing), or attack anyone else (because they are adjacent to Bizarro Joker). This 45 point figure may completely neutralize half of the opposing team. His only real vulnerabilities are that his healing can be Outwitted, or that he can taken out by ranged attacks (probably at least 4) before getting adjacent to enough characters. But that is totally understandable. I mean it’s not like they could make a Joker that is completely unkillable and still be in the in the 50 point range. Right? RIGHT?

Anarky JW.png

4. JW003B Anarky75 points — Common Prime: Anarky’s dial is pretty unremarkable, but if you are looking for a way to keep opposing figures from coming to your side of the board you’d be hard pressed to find a better way to do it then with this figure. If you need time to build Robo Penguins, turn a Supreme Intelligence dial or deploy Pandora’s Box Sins – this is your guy. Bomb markers give you the option of blowing up if an opposing character is within 3 of the marker and they have a 50% chance of doing 3 Penetrating damage to everything within 3 of the marker. At the start of the game you get 6 bomb markers to place anywhere except within 4 of a starting area or another bomb marker.

That’s pretty strong by itself, but you can maximize their efficiency in two ways. First there no limit to how many bombs can be set off at the start off your turn. If an opposing figure is in range of two or more bombs you can set off all of them at once for maximum damage. The second way to maximize efficiency is to recognize that while the bombs you start with can’t be placed near other bombs, there is no such restriction on bombs brought into play via Anarky’s special attack power “LEAVING THEM A LITTLE SURPRISE: Give Anarky a power action. Place adjacent a Bomb special marker as described on this card.” You can use that power to place bombs adjacent to other bombs which should prevent an opponent from going anywhere near that area for the rest of the game.

Jakeem Thunder JW.png

3. JW053B Jakeem Thunder 140 points SR Prime: The newest figure made that allows you to pick your powers every turn. Jakeem Thunder is no Zombie GOTG062 Super Skrull, but that doesn’t mean he can’t still be highly effective. With only a few restrictions, Jakeem can pick any two powers each turn to add them to his own. He can still pick a lot powerful combinations. For example, Running Shot/Pulsewave, Ranged Combat Expert/Sidestep, Plasticity/Poison, Combat Reflexes/Stealth, Hypersonic Speed/Super Strength, Perplex/Telekinesis, or Flurry/Blades/Claws/Fangs. On turns where you aren’t taking any action with him, you can choose Shape Change or Stealth and any defense power. You can even have Regeneration at any point on your dial, or choose support to heal others.

Where he really gets nuts is where he’s helped by Possession or Resources. The Wrath Sin from Pandora’s Box will make it so he doesn’t need to worry about his lack of Willpower and he’ll have Combat Reflexes to go along with the Energy Shield/Deflection already on his dial. Or you could add an entity like Eclipso so you can choose a defensive ability from Eclipso and let Jakeem choose 2 offensive abilities with his trait. Even better, you can do both!

bizarro_green_arrow_01

Me am mascot for Target!!”

2. JW066 Bizarro Green Arrow50 PointsChase: Me am making entire team vulnerable to range attacks. Me no offer unprecedented protection like has been seen many times before in HeroClix. Me am not most expensive figure in set and not for good reason. Me will not let team essentially ignore the first four (or more) range attacks made against them. Me will not define the meta and will not be a piece that you need to plan around when making a tournament team. Nick Fury, Hawkeye, and Green Arrow love seeing me on opposite team. They know that they will have an easy time dealing with me.

the-killing-joke-joker

Why is he dripping wet in this picture?

1. JW060V The Joker50 PointsSuper Rare: So they went ahead and made a Joker that is completely unkillable in the 50 point range. I mean yeah he does take damage if you attack him, but he has 30 clicks of life.  Oh and he doesn’t take pushing damage. Oh and he has traited Super Senses. Oh and he may randomly heal up to three clicks at the start of your turn without using an action. So an opponent may KO the Joker if he devotes all his actions to it over 8-10 turns, but what is the other 250 points of your team doing during that time? There is two reasons why I’m saying that the joker is unkillable during a standard time length game. The first is that with everything I just mentioned, your opponent will likely run out of time. Especially if you are weakening his team with attacks during that time. The second reason that Joker is unkillable is that by now everyone knows about him. And If your opponent knows about this figure, they won’t even bother trying to attack him.

But what about offense? This 50 point character would a take a long time to KO anyone. Well that’s actually true, but you have 250 points left to play some offense. This isn’t the best offensive figure ever, it’s arguably the best tie up figure ever. Place him next to your opponents best attacker and just sit him there. If your opponent attacks him, you win. If your opponent tries to break away and fails, you win. If your opponent breaks away for a turn, then just move right back next to him the following turn, and eventually you’ll win.

 

[EDITOR’S NOTE: Okay, there you have it! Agree? Disagree? Sound off in the Comments below! And don’t go too far–Night 9 drops tomorrow!]

The Most-Wanted Ghosts of Clix-Mas Future Return!! (Or,What We Want to See in 2017!!) (Or Or, We Call an Audible on the Seventh Night of Clix-Mas!!)(Whew!!)

[EDITOR’S NOTE: Once again (and this time, with feeling!), we are shamelessly unleashing the 12 Nights of Clix-Mas! Tonight is Night 5! If you missed The First Night of Clix-Mas, you can read what it’s all about right here! Night 2 was the nascent edition of a new holiday scenario we’ve been cooking up and can be found… here-ish! Night 3 took a brief look back at Horrorclix. Night 4 was the debut of a new feature called “Overlooked” which examined some pieces from World’s Finest that don’t see quite as much play as they seemingly should… . And Night 5 was Part 1 of a brief 3-part series that examines how Heroclix would look if there were a Core Set released every year or two… And Night 6 saw HypeFox Theory-craft his own Marvel Heroclix Core Set!]

peyton-manning

That sound you here is Ninwashui yelling ‘Omaha!!’

Okay, here’s the deal!

Some nights, when it’s the middle of the 12 Nights of Clix-Mas and you’re blogging by the seat of your pants and you’ve probably had juuuust a bit too much caffeine, you just have to call an audible.

Tonight is one of those nights!

So, this is the Seventh Night of Clix-Mas 2016, which means we have six Clix-Mas blogs in the books, which also means we have six to go (Yikes!) to make our goal of 12 blog entries in 12 days during what is generally the busiest, most stressful time of the year.

In otherwords, we’ve reached the halfway point. Which also ALSO means we’ve started to get some feedback. In this case, that feedback comes from none other than the co-author of this very blog, Mr. Ninwashui himself!

He read yesterday’s article on Theory Crafting a Marvel Core Set and, well, he had some thoughts!

The long and short of the conversation that followed resulted in one main revision to our plans: he is going to write the DC Core Set Theory Crafting article (also known as “Everything Old Is New Again Part 3!!”)!!

Which is great and all, but that also means we’re gonna have to call an audible for today’s column. So don’t worry–you’ll still get Part 3 this Clix-Mas (probably around Night 10 or Night 11, methinks).

So instead, we’re going to revisit one of last year’s most popular Clix-Mas entries: The Most-Wanted Ghosts of Clix-Mas Future!

Christmas Future

No, sorry, you’re definitely getting an MCU Capwolf movie, but don’t worry, the Russo Brothers figure it out. I know. I couldn’t believe it either. I mean, they even make Doctor FREAKING Druid work. And he was played by Miley Cyrus.

If you’ve forgotten how this gimmick works, I’m basically going to go month-by-month for the first six months of 2017 and discuss the sets we know we’re getting and what I hope we get from them!

Let’s get started!

FEBRUARY 2017: 

deadpool-and-x-force

DEADPOOL & X-FORCE:

Or is it X-Force and Deadpool? Unclear at the moment. But we do know this is our next set!

–I would love to see Word Bubbles return. Alas, I think we would have already heard about these if they were appearing in this set, as last time around (Deadpool in 2014) their existence was part of the marketing.

–I didn’t love the Cable we got in AVX or Deadpool (although the New Mutants Monthly LE kit Cable from last year was great on his own and bonkers-good on the Team Base!), so I wouldn’t mind seeing a new version or two in this set as he’s always been one of my favorite Marvel characters.

–The Ultra-Chase rarity returns?! Well then. Not sure who this could be, but if they hadn’t already given us Thorpool in the Deadpool set, that probably would have been my bet. We’ll see.

–Actually, if the Ultra-Chase turns out to be Squirrel Girl (who we know is in the set in one form or another), I’d actually be cool with that.

Deadpool & X-Force releases (for now) sometime in mid-to-late February.

 

MARCH 2017: 

return-of-the-shredder

SHREDDER’S RETURN: 

–Honestly, there’s not a ton more I need from TMNT right now, unless they’re going to dig into the live action movies, which I’m pretty sure are not included in the license.

–This is going to be a very dial-dependent set for me; meaning, the more good figures I see Previewed, the more likely I’ll be to buy more of the set. Otherwise, this is probably the least interesting of the three Turtle Sets they’ve released/announced so far.

 

JUNE 2017: 

jane-foster-what-if

I’ll be honest–I think we know at this point what would happen if Jane Foster had found the Hammer of Thor…

MARVEL HEROCLIX 15TH ANNIVERSARY: WHAT IF?

–Ooooooo, am I excited for this one!

–The thing about a set where literally any figure could fit is that literally any figure could show up in this set. I can’t wait, but I have no idea what’s coming with this one.

–I know a lot of folks want more Exiles; I’d be fine with that, but I really want random characters from random What If? one-shot stories. Pieces like Iron Doom from Invincible Iron Man come to mind. That guy was awesome!

 

JULY 2017: 

elseworlds-multiversity

DC HEROCLIX 15TH ANNIVERSARY: ELSEWORLDS

–Even though this is the same concept as Marvel’s What If, I feel like we’ve seen a lot more of DC’s Elseworlds already. Kingdom Come? We just got a bunch of them (although I’d never object to more). Red Son? Ditto.

–If, however, this set ends up chock full of Multiversity pieces (Captain Carrot PLEASE!!), I will be a happy camper! I even want members of the Gentry. I’d love them as Colossals, but I understand that if I get any at all, they’ll probably just be normal bases, which is okay.

–2017 is going to be an interesting year in Clix

Alright! That’s all for today. We’ve still got a lot in the hopper, such as Ninwashui’s DC Core Set AND his Joker’s Wild Top Ten, both coming before the end of Clix-Mas 2016!!

So get ready, buckle up, and strap in!! And don’t forget to come find us right here in this space in the next 24 hours for more Clix-Mas 2015 goodness!

Should Everything Old Be New Again? Part 2!! (Or, Theory Crafting a Marvel Core Set!!) (Or, The Sixth Night of Clix-Mas!!)

[EDITOR’S NOTE: Once again (and this time, with feeling!), we are shamelessly unleashing the 12 Nights of Clix-Mas! Tonight is Night 5! If you missed The First Night of Clix-Mas, you can read what it’s all about right here! Night 2 was the nascent edition of a new holiday scenario we’ve been cooking up and can be found… here-ish! Night 3 took a brief look back at Horrorclix. Night 4 was the debut of a new feature called “Overlooked” which examined some pieces from World’s Finest that don’t see quite as much play as they seemingly should… . And Night 5 was Part 1 of a brief 3-part series that examines how Heroclix would look if there were a Core Set released every year or two… ]

speed-demon

Okay! Yesterday, we talked about what a Core Set is and why Heroclix could use one. Today, I’m gonna put together a mock Core Set for Marvel Heroclix to see what the concept would look like in action!

Here’s how I’m gonna put it together!

–The set would be distributed via 5-figure Booster packs, with 10 Packs equaling a Brick, and 2 Bricks equaling a Case (no change from a normal expansion).

–The set would contain 70 figures; 16 Commons + 1 Prime; 16 Uncommons + 1 Prime; 16 Rares + 1 Prime; 12 Super Rares + 1 Prime; and 6 Chases.

–All figures would be reprints EXCEPT the Primes and the Chases. The reprints would primarily come from all the Marvel sets that rotated out of Modern from the previous year (with the exception of certain “Micro Sets” like the Movie tie-in Sets and Fast Forces, although regular set Gravity Feeds should be fair game) with just a few older pieces. So, for this Core Set, we’d mostly be choosing pieces from Wolverine and the X-Men, Invincible Iron Man, Deadpool and Guardians of the Galaxy, with just a few exceptions.

–With the Primes and Chases, I would try to add to or even finish Sub-Themes from the rotated sets so that the new pieces fit right in with the reprints.

–Some figures might change rarity. I would make a rule that nothing can move up in rarity (for example, I would never let an Uncommon in a prior set suddenly become a Rare in the Core Set), but figures can move down a tier (a Rare in, say, GOTG could thus become an Uncommon in the Core Set).

Okay! So what would my Marvel 2017 Core Set look like? I’m glad you asked! I present to you…

THE THEORETICAL 2017 MARVEL HEROCLIX CORE SET!!

COMMONS: 

thule-society-priest

MC17001 Thule Society Priest (formally FI001)(Meet one of the exceptions! This guy comes from Fear Itself, obviously, but he was a well-designed, well-balanced piece that deserves to come back for a year!)

MC17002 Rescue (formally IIM002)

MC17003 Mantis (formally GOTG003)

MC17004 Secret Empire Number 9 (formally DP204)

MC17005 U.L.T.I.M.A.T.U.M. Soldier (formally DP005)

MC17006 Dreadnought (formally IIM006)

Weapon X Scientist.jpg

MC17007A Weapon X Scientist (formally DP007A)

MC17007B William Stryker (Our first new piece, this would brind Stryker into the Modern Age–he was last seen years ago in Giant-Size X-Men. Given how many mutants will be running around in 2017, we probably need more X-Men villains and, after all of his X-Men movie franchise appearances, Stryker is one of the most well-known X-Men villains.

MC17008 Colleen Wing (formally DP008)

MC17009 Misty Knight (formally DP009)

MC17010 Lady Deathstrike (formally WXM210)

MC17011 Justin Hammer (formally IIM008)

MC17012 Tana Nile (formally GOTG012B)

MC17013 Recorder #451 (formally GOTG013B)

MC17014 Bulldozer (formally IIM014)

MC17015 Tony Stark (formally IIM015)

MC17016 Nebula (formally GOTG016)

 

UNCOMMONS:

yondu

MC17017 Yondu (formally GOTG024)

MC17018 Alpha Primitive (formally GOTG018)

MC17019 Captain Marvel (formally GOTG207)

MC17020 Weasel (formally DP020)

MC17021 Flatman (formally WXM021)

MC17022 Talon (formally GOTG022)

black-cat

MC17023A Black Cat (formally DP023)

MC17023B Mink (Another new figure, both for this set and for Heroclix, Mink hails from Mark Gruenwald’s wonderful Squadron Supreme run. Although she wouldn’t have the Squadron Supreme keyword herself, I could imagine her having a Trait that would keep her from breaking Theme as long as she was on a force with a character named Nighthawk. Which should be possible with the Squadron Supreme of Earth-712 ATA, once Mink’s Trait was worded properly.)

MC17024 Number One (formally DP024)

MC17025 Flag-Smasher (formally DP025)

MC17026 Crystal (formally GOTG026)

MC17027 Piledriver (formally IIM027)

MC17028 Ebony Maw (formally GOTG025)

MC17029 War Machine (formally IIM029A–was a Rare, now Uncommon)

MC17030 Star-Lord (formally GOTG030)

MC17031 Gambit (formally WXM031–was a Rare, now Uncommon)

MC17032 Punisher (formally DP032)

 

RARES:

forge-rare

MC17033 Forge (formally WXM033)

MC17034 Legion (formally WXM038)

MC17035 Killraven (formally GOTG035)

MC17036 Bullseye (formally DP036)

MC17037 Iron Monger 2.0 (formally IIM037)

MC17038 Maximus (formally GOTG 038)

MC17039 Big Bertha (formally WXM039)

MC17040 Thunderball (formally IIM039)

MC17041 Deathurge (formally GOTG041)

MC17042 Grasshopper (formally DP042)

MC17043 Black Bolt (formally GOTG036)

MC17044 Silver Samurai (formally WXM044)

MC17045 Shriek (formally GOTG044)

MC17046 Black Dwarf (formally GOTG036)

thanos-rare

MC17047A Thanos (formally GOTG047A)

MC17047B Thanos (Another new piece, this would be our Rare Prime, and it’s… Marvel Zombies Thanos. Why he wasn’t made as a Chase piece in the original GOTG set, I don’t know. But we’ll fix that right here! He won’t be a SwitchClix, but he will have the Z-Virus keyword!)

MC17048 Supergiant (formally GOTG048)

 

SUPER RARES:

corvus-super-rare

MC17049 Corvus Glaive (formally GOTG049)

MC17050 Proxima Midnight (formally GOTG050)

nate-grey-super-rare-prime

MC17051A X-Man (formally WXM051)

MC17051B Nate Grey (The final new Prime for the set, this version of Nate would carry the Age of Apocalypse keyword and represent the character from when he debuted during the A0A event.)

MC17052 Wrecker (formally IIM050)

MC17053 Speed Demon (formally DP053A)

MC17054 Arnim Zola (formally DP054)

MC17055 Iron Man (formally GOTG055)

MC17056 Shaman (formally IIM40)

MC17057 Iron Doom (formally IIM042)

MC17058 Groot (formally GOTG051)

MC17059 Rocket Raccoon (formally GOTG052)

MC17060  Thane (formally GOTG060)

 

CHASES:

(For the Chases, there are just so many AoA characters who have either never been Clix’d, or else haven’t been Clix’d in YEARS. So I would finish the Core Set off with more AoA Chases!)

MC17061 Prelate Scott Summers (AoA version of Cyclops, missing an eye.)

MC17062 Jean Grey (AoA version.)

MC17063 Prelate Alex Summers (AoA version of Havok.)

MC17064 Dark Beast (AoA version of Beast.)

MC17065 Nemesis (AoA version of Genocide. Also known as Holocaust. Hasn’t been Clix’d since Giant-Size X-Men.)

MC17066 Apocalypse (AoA version, obviously. Sculpt would be similar in stature to Tyrant’s from GOTG.)

 

And there you have it. Now imagine a set like this being available all year long to be used with upcoming releases and tournaments! You would crack one of these and one pack of any current Marvel set–or even a new set during launch!

So do you like the idea of a Core Set yet? Sound off in the Comments below! And tune in tomorrow for a look a theoretical DC Core Set!

Should Everything Old Be New Again? Part 1!! (Or, Does Heroclix Need a Rotating Base Set?)(Or, The Fifth Night of Clix-Mas!!)

[EDITOR’S NOTE: Once again (and this time, with feeling!), we are shamelessly unleashing the 12 Nights of Clix-Mas! Tonight is Night 5! If you missed The First Night of Clix-Mas, you can read what it’s all about right here! Night 2 was the nascent edition of a new holiday scenario we’ve been cooking up and can be found… here-ish! Night 3 took a brief look back at Horrorclix. Night 4 was the debut of a new feature called “Overlooked” which examined some pieces from World’s Finest that don’t see quite as much play as they seemingly should… ]

han-young

Everything old…

han-old

... is new again!

Welcome to Night 5 of the 12 Nights of Clix-Mas!!

Tonight is also Part 1 (of 3) of a brief series wherein I ask the question, “Does Heroclix need a base set?,” attempt to answer that question, and then take a look at what a Marvel base set and DC base set would look like.

First, though… what is a base set?

Well… I’m specifically talking about a Modern Age set that would (primarily) contain figures from recently rotated expansions that would give newer players a slightly easier entry into the game than going full bore into the lastest booster set. Additionally, it would allow veteran players a second opportunity to use select pieces from retired sets in Modern Age games as the Meta moves forward.

If this is starting to sound a little familiar, well…

magic-alpha

It’s probably because Magic: The Gathering…

magic-origins

… has been doing this for 23 years!

Yup! Magic has already pioneered the Core set concept. I’m just blatantly stealing from them. In fact, most successful TCG’s have used some form of this idea at some point. Heck, even Heroclix has had a set of reprints before–Marvel Classics, anyone?

Except I think it’s time for Wizkids to take it to the next level. If I were them, I would release one Marvel Set and one DC Set every year that featured pieces from every set that just rotated out, and I would keep each piece at the same rarity level–Common, Uncommon, Rare or Super Rare–that it was in its original set. But then I would create all new Primes and Chases! And it would all be Modern Age.

This would open up the Meta to awesome new Build possibilities every year while still allowing long time players to feel like all–or at least some–of their old pieces have value beyond just the occasional Golden Age tournament at their local venue.

From Wizkids’s perspective, they would be able to add another two full set releases to the calendar, yet those releases would have cheaper overhead to produce since 80-90% of the release would feature re-used sculpts.

Currently, Wizkids schedules big expansion set releases for February, May, August and November. I would push each of those releases back a month so that we get sets in March, June, September and December, with the normal January dead zone now becoming the month every year where Wizkids releases their new Core sets.

Now, what would those sets look like? I’m glad you asked!

Because that is tomorrow’s topic!

Until then, stay Safe, and Watch Where You Draw Your Lines of Fire!!

OverLooked!! (Or, Three 5-Star World’s Finest Pieces That Went Overlooked in 2016!!) (Or, The Fourth Night of Clix-Mas!!)

[EDITOR’S NOTE: Once again (and this time, with feeling!), we are shamelessly unleashing the 12 Nights of Clix-Mas! Tonight is Night 4! If you missed The First Night of Clix-Mas, you can read what it’s all about right here! Night 2 was the nascent edition of a new holiday scenario we’ve been cooking up and can be found… here-ish! Night 3 took a brief look back at Horrorclix.]

sad-batman

So, I skipped Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice in theaters this year. Kept meaning to go, but I never did. The truth is, I show up opening weekend now for just about any MCU property (bring on “Marvel’s Fancy Ghosts!!“) because Marvel movies have earned my trust–the DCEU really hasn’t yet. But that’s a conversation for another day.

Anyway, I finally bought BvS: DoJ on Blu-Ray and watched the whole Extended Edition (or whatever it’s called) the other day. Yeeeesh. It is a mess (why was Lois Lane even IN this movie?!), and critics were right to write it off. Buuuut… But…

Ben Affleck is trying in this movie. He really is. It’s a good performance that will, frankly, end up overlooked in the annals of cinema when people think back on 2016.

Which brings us, in a roundabout way, to today! 2016 saw the release of NINE different Heroclix sets (which doesn’t even count all the Fast Forces, Starters and Monthly OP LE’s we got). We got a ton of 5-Star worthy figures this year, but not all have made their way into the Meta.

So today, we’re going to take a look at three overlooked 5-Star figures from this year’s first set, World’s Finest, and try to figure out what went wrong!

overwatch-calvarys-not-coming

Cheers love! The cavalry’s… not coming.

THE THREE MOST OVERLOOKED 5-STAR FIGURES OF WORLD’S FINEST!!

Nightlantern

3. WF037B Nightlantern: The Rare Prime from the year’s first full set, World’s Finest, Nightlantern still carries a 5-Star rating on HCRealms.com and was supposed to set the Meta on fire with his “Everyone is now an Entity!!” Trait (EVERY PERSON I KNOW IS AN AMALGAM OF TWO FROM YOUR UNIVERSE?: When building your force, you may pay 25 points and put a standard character on your sideline, called an Amalgam. At the beginning of the game, equip the Amalgam to a standard friendly character (other than Nightlantern) that is higher points than the Amalgam’s highest point value and link it to that character’s dial. For the rest of the game, the Amalgam provides the below effect when equipped: EFFECT: At the beginning of your turn or when when this character is clicked, you may choose a standard power on the equipped dial. This character can use that power until your next turn or clicked.).

When the set was first released, Nightlantern was going for a blistering $65-$75–unheard of for a Rare Prime, but folks were obsessed with all the possibilities he provided. Well, fast forward 10 months, and folks are dying to unload him for less than half of that original amount.

What Went Wrong: The Meta just never evened out for this piece. It doesn’t help that his dial is a little pricey at 150 for what you get (remember, that 150 doesn’t even include the extra 25 Points for an Amalgam): One Click of Hypersonic, 2 almost useless Clicks of TK and Leadership, etc.

Basically, to make use of his best ability (his Trait), you have to invest more than half of your total Build points in a 300 Point game. That is tough to make work.

[EDITOR’S NOTE: Sure it’s tough, but that didn’t stop us from compiling a pretty comprehensive list of possibilities back in March!]

In a Meta era where folks are building entire teams around maximizing the number of Call-In Cheese Wheels they can use in one game, finding 25 Points to spend on an Amalgam is nearly impossible (or, to look at it another way, you’re spending the exact same amount of points that 5 Call-Ins would cost you).

Will We See Him Again?: If Wizkids decides that they’ve had enough of the Avengers Round Table and the Avengers ID cards and rotates them out around May of next year, then maybe. The JLA Teleporter will still be around, but if it’s suddenly impossible to call-in Hawkeye, Thor or Nick Fury, the Call-In strategy as a whole may fall out of favor.

There’s not really any recent Resources to pick from, so in this scenario (remember, Pandora’s Box and the 7 Deadly Sins would have rotated out as well, since they were released prior to the Round Table in 2015) players looking to upgrade a character with some off the board shenanigans would almost certainly give Nightlantern another look.

But it’s not nearly clear yet which way Wizkids is going to go with next year’s set rotations.

KC SUpes

2. WF061R Superman: This is the World’s Finest Chase KC Supes on his “Tower Click.” For just 35 Points, he’s extremely tough to KO (18 Defense, Invincible PLUS the KC TA), but he has the potential to lock down two of your opponent’s best pieces every turn with his Damage Special (I WANT TO FARM IN PEACE: Superman can use Incapacitate with two targets and an attack value of 12. Hit characters can’t make ranged attacks during their turn.).

Considering that he also has an 8 Range and the Superman Ally TA, there’s not a lot of places for your opponent to hide, especially if you win Map Roll and are able to take the game someplace without much Blocking or Elevated Terrain. Ended up ranked at number five in our World’s Finest Top Ten, which was pretty high considering how stacked that set was!

What Went Wrong: A few things. First, just like with Nightlantern, if you’re playing a popular Meta Build like an Ultron Drone Call-In team or a Devil Dinosaur Critter Spawn team, Superman doesn’t really fit so well into either of those archetypes. You’re 35 Points would be better spent elsewhere.

And even if you’re not playing one of those two teams, this version of Supes isn’t a great counter to either of those rosters, either. There’s just too many targets, even with his double bolts. Nick Fury? Sure! Supes can see through Stealth and tag him almost every turn (or at least make Fury spend an inordinate amount of time dealing with a 35-Point piece while you surround him with the rest of your force).

The other thing that hurt Supes here in the Meta was a controversial post-release ruling in May that basically made it impossible to use Supes–or any KC “Tower Click” figure–as a “Time Walk” Call-In piece. So he was kind of neutered both coming and going.

Will We See Him Again?: Probably not. The Call-In ban really hurts. However…

Wizkids just ruled recently that–in certain circumstances–Superior Foes Chameleon can actually use KC “Tower Click” pieces as a disguise. This may breathe new life into Supes’s Meta career, assuming Chameleon catches on a little bit more. Control is just that important in the Meta right now.

And of course, his regular dial should continue to see Meta play as a Call-In on its own…

weapon-drop

Oh. Yeah…

1. FFWFS100 Weapon Drop: This is almost a Resource masquerading as a Special Object. Offering (somewhat unpredictable) access to great abilities like Pulse Wave, Regen and Pen/Psy, the Weapon Drop seemed poised to become this cycle’s Gamma Bomb, a must-have Special Object that would show up time and time again.

And yet, despite all that, and despite its 5-Star rating on HCRealms.com… you just don’t really see it played that much.

What Went Wrong: Nothing in particular–I just think its time has not come yet. World’s Finest was released in February, and at that point, there was really less than two months left in the 300 ROC Limited format. I don’t think there was enough time for players to really embrace this piece’s Meta potential before the ROC rotated in a straight 300 Modern format.

Will We See It Again?: Well, as we slowly get back to that format, I think you’ll start to see the Weapon Drop show up more and more.

In a Resource-rich environment, it doesn’t make a lot of sense. In a Resource-less environment, though, it suddenly becomes extremely versatile and powerful.

 

Agree? Disagree? Sound off in the Comments below. And let us know if you enjoyed this look back at World’s Finest and if you want to see OverLooked become a regular feature on the site!

Lastly, don’t forget to come right back to this space tomorrow(-ish) for more 12 Days of Clix-Mas!!

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

 

A Look Back in Horror!! (Or, What the Heck Were HorrorClix?!) (Or, The Third Night of Clix-Mas!!)

[EDITOR’S NOTE: Once again (and this time, with feeling!), we are shamelessly unleashing the 12 Nights of Clix-Mas! Tonight is Night 3! If you missed The First Night of Clix-Mas, you can read what it’s all about right here! Night 2 was the nascent edition of a new holiday scenario we’ve been cooking up and can be found… here-ish!]

Welcome back to Critical Missives’ 12 Nights of Clix-Mas!

Today we’re going to look back at one of the ghosts of Clix-Mas Past (Horrorclix!) before we take a tiny little peak at one of the newly announced Ghosts of Clix-Mas Future (aka next year’s Heroclix: Undead set!)!

The Origin of Horroclix:

spidey-zombie-card

Back in 2006, Heroclix had been humming along for quite successfully for more than four years. In November of that year, Wizkids released their 24th offering, Supernova, which added a new rarity (sort-of).

Until Supernova, Heroclix didn’t have “Chase” figures. They would generally publish Rookie, Experienced and Veteran versions of the same character in the same set. Then there would be much rarer single versions of figures called “Uniques” which always ended up being the most valuable and hardest to pull pieces.

Well, when Supernova hit, Wizkids had added four special figures that were classified as “Ultra-rare” and were only pulled at a rate of about 1 in a 100 boxes. These figures were based on the hugely successful “Marvel Zombies” limited series and came packed in small poly-bags with another new addition the game had never seen before–a card!

Another New Addiction:

Yup! These were the gateway pieces that introduced the world to Horrorclix, a sort-of Heroclix spin-off. It had it’s own rules, but it was basically Heroclix if Heroclix pulled it’s figures from horror movies and novels (and the twisted imaginations of Wizkids employees themselves).

As you can see from Zombie Spidey’s card above, it didn’t take much to convert a Heroclix piece into a Horrorclix piece… or vice versa. Indeed, we probably wouldn’t have cards and keywords had Horrorclix not innovated those ideas.

The four Marvel Zombie Chase pieces (Spider-Man, Wolverine, Colonel America and Hulk) were the only Marvel or DC Horrorclix they ever made, although Wizkids would continue to explore the Marvel Zombie universe in Heroclix almost exactly a year later with representations of Zombie Iron Man, another Zombie Spidey, Zombie Giant-Man eating Black Panther and Zombie Wolverine in Galactus’s costume  (since he had chowed down on the Eater of Worlds).

Instead, Wizkids focused on licenses that had deeper ties to the realm horror, including Aliens, Predator, Hellboy and the B.P.R.D. as well as both Freddy Krueger and Jason from Friday the 13th.

the-great-cthulhu

And just as they had started making Colossal Heroclix like Galactus, Wizkids also started giving the same treatment to such genre staples as The Great Cthulhu (still so rare that he regularly sells for between $125-$225 on eBay) and the Alien Queen (with detachable Egg Sac! Yum!!).

And then, at the height of all things Clix, came the news in 2008 that Topps had bought the Clix license and was shutting EVERYTHING down. While Heroclix would be resurrected within the next year, sadly, Horroclix was no more.

Two years ago, Wizkids revisited the Marvel Zombies universe and created 16 different Chase pieces over the course of two Heroclix sets (Deadpool and Guardians of the Galaxy), but Horrorclix itself remained dead…

Carving a New Future (?):

scarecrow-horrorclix

Which leads us to the announcement just this very month! Wizkids has decided to a new Gravity Feed Set filled with 19 brand new horror characters, from generic Werewolves, Zombies and ghosts to specific public domain characters like Dr. Jekyll. In all, there will be 9 new Commons, 8 Rares and 2 Chases.

But… these will be Heroclix pieces that use Heroclix dials!

That’s right! Horrorclix is still dead, but its influence–and now, some of its characters–will live on in Heroclix!

At this point, any non-Marvel, non-DC set Wizkids puts out is certainly a risk (although the Turtles releases seem to be selling just fine), but I actually think this set will be a refreshing change of pace (assuming it’s Modern Age legal, of course!). And it just might bring back some fond memories for those of us who remember what it was like to pit Batman against Jason or have the Avengers and JLA team up against the Great Cthulhu!

 

Okay! What do you guys think? Do you remember Horrorclix? Are you excited for the new set? Let us know in the Comments section. And join us right back here tomorrow for more Clix-Mas!!

 

 

 

Upcoming Games: Home for the Holidays!! (Or, The Second Night of Clix-Mas!!)

[EDITOR’S NOTE: Once again (and this time, with feeling!), we are shamelessly unleashing the 12 Nights of Clix-Mas! Tonight is Night 2! If you missed The First Night of Clix-Mas, you can catch up right here!]

home-for-the-holidays

Welcome back to the 12 Nights of Clix-Mas 2016! This is the Second Night of Clix-Mas, wherein we’ll discuss the next special Scenario we’re running at our local venue Comics & More in Madison Heights, Michigan!

The Game: Home for the Holidays

Entry Fee: $5.00

The Build: 300 Points, Golden Age. MUST BE A NAMED THEMED TEAM!!

The Restrictions: The Possession Mechanic, Call-Ins, Team Bases and Resources and Convention LE Faust are not allowed.

Themed Team rules and ATA‘s ARE allowed. Vehicles and Colossals are allowed, but only if those pieces don’t break your Theme and only if you have at least ONE other standard character on your force as well.

Constructs, Word Ballons, Horde or Bystander Tokens, Special Objects & Relics are only allowed if one of your characters brings them in at the start of the game as part of a Trait or game effect, and only if you pay any associated costs.

The SetupAfter both players have placed their characters, each player (in turn order) designates one standard character on their team as aTRAVELER.”

If a TRAVELER would be KO’d by any game effect, that TRAVELER is instead placed back in its Starting Area at the beginning of its next turn UNLESS it was the last friendly character on its own force.

Once each player has chosen their TRAVELER, each player (in turn order) must choose a HOLIDAY HOST from the Table below. Their TRAVELER gains that host’s corresponding Trait.

Auntie Tana Nile.png

“Auntie” Tana Nile: Give your Traveler a Power Action if that character occupies an opponent’s Starting Area and there are no opposing Drunk Relatives on the board. If you do, until the start of your next turn, friendly characters can use Improved Movement: Ignores Elevated Terrain, Ignores Hindering Terrain, Ignores Characters and opposing characters can’t ignore terrain for movement purposes even if this ability is lost. In addition, friendly characters can use Improved Targeting: Ignores Elevated Terrain, Ignores Hindering Terrain, Ignores Characters and opposing characters can’t ignore terrain for targeting purposes (except via the “Fun Uncle” Arcade ability).

brotherhood

“Evil Unca'” Mags: Give your Traveler a Power Action if that character occupies an opponent’s Starting Area and there are no opposing Drunk Relatives on the board. If you do, choose a square on the map. For each character occupying that square or an adjacent square, roll a d6 that can’t be rerolled. On a result of 4-6, deal those characters 3 damage.

krampus-holiday

“Weird Uncle” KrampusGive your Traveler a Power Action if that character occupies an opponent’s Starting Area and there are no opposing Drunk Relatives on the board. If you do, place an action token on each opposing character that is adjacent to friendly figure. These action tokens will cause pushing damage if a second token is placed and the figure doesn’t have a way to ignore pushing damage (like Willpower). 

An opposing character may only have one action token placed on them this way each turn, even if they are adjacent to multiple friendly figures.

arcade

“Fun Uncle” ArcadeIf your Traveler occupies an opponent’s Starting Area and there are no opposing Drunk Relatives on the board, your Traveler can use Energy Explosion and Precision Strike and may target characters anywhere on the map with a ranged combat attack regardless of range and line of fire.

(Note that this ability allows the traveler to completely bypass any targeting restrictions that “Auntie” Tana Nile might oppose. )

ADDITIONAL NOTES:

drunk-relatives

Drunk Relatives: A Drunk Relative is a special surprise character that will be distributed to each player before the game begins by the Judge. A Drunk Relative follows all normal Heroclix rules with the exception that a Drunk Relative may not be moved to or placed in any square outside of your starting zone by any game effect. A Drunk Relative can only target and be targeted by opposing characters in your Starting Area.

Basically, you want to KO your opponent

Note: Not every player will be given the same Drunk Relative!!

If a Drunk Relative is KO’d, it is scored normally by your opponent. However, a Drunk Relative is ONLY SCORED IF IT IS KO’d!!

If a Drunk Relative is the only character left on any player’s force, then the Drunk Relative may immediately choose and activate any Holiday Host power each turn AS A FREE ACTION.


The Goal: To get home safe and use your Holiday Host’s powers to destroy your opponent!

(Note that it is possible to win without KO’ing your opponent’s Drunk Relative and taking advantage of a Host ability, but it might be pretty tough… )

Okay!! That’s all for now! Post any questions about the scenario in the Comments below.

Otherwise, we’ll see you back at this space tomorrow for another Night of Clix-Mas!!

Safe Travels Everybody!!