Fast Five: The Five Worst Figures in Uncanny X-Men!!

FAST FIVE

So, we just talked about the 10 best pieces in Uncanny X-Men. But who are the worst?

Yep, we’re giving the cream of the dreck their own article today! Let’s count them down from worst to even worst-ier to most worst-est!

Wolverine Star Trek

Oh wow! So this happened once…

5. UXM006 Wolverine — 50 Points — Common: Uncanny X-Men actually doesn’t have a ton of crap. The Common slots are much better comparatively than, say, World’s Finest.

Having said that, this is not a great Wolverine. The designers tried to shove everything the character can do in the comics into a tiny, 50 Point blended drink of a dial, but it doesn’t quite taste right.

With no Willpower, no top dial reducers and a survival Trait (HEALING FACTOR: When Wolverine clears action tokens, you may heal him 1 click.) that definitely ISN’T the best there is at what it does (at most, it MIGHT go off once or twice in a game for one Click of healing at a time), this version of Logan is entirely dependent on basing someone and praying that the opposition has no way of dealing with his Combat Reflexes (such as Outwit, or, y’know, just sniping him). His 10 Attack Value is fine for his point level, but it’s still nothing to write home about.

Now, I’ve seen some chatter about his last Click, and it is a monster: Flurry with B/C/F, Battle Fury to ignore Shape Change and a 13 Attack Value! Yay!! Except you’ll rarely if ever get to it. And even if you do, that Flurry means that he better already be basing someone, otherwise he’s probably not going to survive long enough to ever use his last Click abilities.

(*Finding a way to give him JLTWS106 Wrath for 8 Points would go a long way towards fixing much of what ails this iteration of Wolverine. But his native dial on its own is not very good.)

Blockbuster

That awkward moment when you think you just made a dramatic entrance by punching through a wall but you suddenly realize that the exertion involved in doing so actually made you crap your pants.

4. UXM010 Blockbuster — 65 Points — Common: 65 Points of slow-moving molasses. He can Charge up to a (measly) three squares on his top dial (only); after that, he’s entirely dependent on the grace of friendly taxis or a TK’er.

By the time he finally gets to someone, the game could be half over. And even if you do drop everything and focus the rest of your team on getting Blockbuster where he needs to go, his 10 Attack Value still has a great chance of missing.

Honestly, I didn’t love that Wolverine we just talked about at 50 Points, but that dial was still clearly better than Blockbuster’s–for 15 LESS points.

Super_Sabre_2

3. UXM032 Super Sabre70 PointsUncommon: At 70 Points, you’re paying Secondary Attacker money for a character who’s more like a Tertiary Attacker. And that first click is just brutal: 10 Attack with Hypersonic Speed, Force Blast, a native 2 Damage and a Defense Value of just 17 with ES/D.

If you can get him down dial (not easy to do without getting him KO’d), he finally picks up some Precision Strike, but that’s about the only power on his dial that will allow you to cut though dampeners.

Basically, if you are choosing to use Super Sabre, you’re already putting yourself at a disadvantage.

Cameron_Hodge_(Earth-616)

2. UXM058 Cameron Hodge200 PointsSuper Rare: He’s got a long(-ish) dial… a couple of survivability Traits (MYSTICAL TELEPATHIC IMMUNITY: Cameron Hodge can’t be targeted by Mind Control or Penetrating/Psychic Blast.)(PHENOMENAL REPAIR RATE AND PHASING MODULE: When Cameron Hodge has two action tokens, he can use Super Senses. At the beginning of your turn, if Cameron Hodge has two action tokens, he can use Regeneration as a free action. ) that actually work… and that’s about it.

Do you want your 200 Point tentpole to start with Stealth top dial? I really don’t, unless the piece also has some sort of Traited Sidestep or something. The middle of his dial is actually somewhat useful, with a limited Charge of up to four squares and an Attack Special Power (IMPALE: Give Cameron Hodge a close action to make a close attack targeting a character within 3 squares and line of fire. Damage dealt from this attack is penetrating and the hit character may be placed in a square within 3 squares and line of fire of Cameron Hodge.) that augments his Threat Range another three squares.

But his limited mobility (his starting Movement Value is 7 and it NEVER goes higher, and since he’s a peanut base he can’t be TK’d) is a real issue, and with only 100 points left to support him, there’s very little you can do about it. The fact that he starts out as a ranged attacker with no move and attack, no Improved Targeting and only a 6 Range isn’t helping his case as a Primary Attacker, either.

If you pull a Cameron and decide to play him at some point, you really have to get comfortable living in the middle of his dial, where his mobility and damage are at their highest. But if I’m paying 200 Points for a piece, I really expect more bang for my theoretical buck.

Phoenix

Okay… gonna use Ranged Combat Expert and, uh, I’ll put everything into Attack. Again.

1. UXM053B Phoenix250 Points — Super Rare PRIME: Yup. To paraphrase Roger Ebert, I hate, hate HATED this version of Phoenix… at least in 300 Point games. In UXM Sealed, she would probably wreck face, just because most of the rest of that set is filled with little 50 Point facehuggers that she can one-shot… if she can see them, that is.

And that’s one of her main problems, especially in 300 Point Constructed. She has no Improved Targeting, so even with a native 9 Range she can be completely defeated by something as simple as basic Stealth on an opposing figure. Even Energy Shield/Deflection poses a big problem for her when she’s on her top dial, since she’s rocking just a 10 Attack.

She does have a Stop Click at the end of her dial, and she has Pulse Wave on her last two clicks along with a 19 Defense. But if you’re playing an opponent with access to Prob and/or Perplex at that point, she’s really quite beatable. Honestly, 60 Point Peggy Carter would actually be a nightmare for this piece to face.

(Yes, I know, every piece has bad matchups, but still…)

The other thing I really dislike about this piece is that her non-Prime version (UXM053A Phoenix) is 140-150 Points of bonkers fun with a dial that’s constantly changing… but you need the Prime version on your sideboard to get the most out of her. So even if you just want to play the better, funner version of this piece, you still need to get really lucky OR shell out about $50 or so just to play the A-side the way you want to. Lame.

[EDITOR’S NOTE: This piece was originally $75-$80 right after the set came out. Most Heroclix figures depreciate a healthy amount after a month or so post-release, but Phoenix Prime has lost almost half of her value on the open market. Looks like the word is out about her dial… ]

But hey–at least her sculpt is pretty cool.

 

 

 

 

 

Fast Five: The Five Worst Figures In Invincible Iron Man!!

FAST FIVE

Hey there!!

So my original intentions with this blog were to write at length about Heroclix, Comics, TV & Movies (and whatever else strikes my fancy, I guess) while offering up some (somewhat) thoughtful insights and opinions. At least once a week, I’ll try to write a long piece where I can really get in-depth on a subject–like my previous post.
And then there will be entries like today. Not every post is gonna be a list of something (I don’t wanna be this guy), but sometimes that is the most efficient way to address a subject quickly.

So then:

We’ve previously discussed the best pieces in the latest full set from Wizkids, Invincible Iron Man. But what are the worst? Not just the bad figs, mind you, but the pieces that you should avoid at all costs—that’s what we’re looking for today!

5. Juggernaut (#032) 115 points—Rare: This hurts. It really does. Juggy is one of my favorite villains, but this is just sad. He starts off just as you’d expect with a perfectly named Improved Movement Trait (UNSTOPPABLE: Improved Movement: Ignores Hindering Terrain, Ignores Blocking Terrain and destroys blocking terrain as the character moves through it, Ignores Characters). Okay, so far so good. The sculpt is great as well. Not mind-blowing, but it captures the ‘Naut just fine. Okay, so that’s the good. Those two things that are not awful. Now for the bad (also known as the reasons he’s on this list):
There’s only 7 clicks on his dial. Only 7 clicks?! At first I thought I had a misprint and he was on someone’s else’s dial. Just 7 clicks for the Juggernaut. Shit, even Spiral (at the same rarity level) got 8 clicks for 9 less points and even then they found room to include the most  exploitable Trait in the history of the game (okay, since she was completely broken, that may be an unfair example, but still…)!
He has no Willpower or Indomitable. No Indomitable?! For one of the most Unstoppable forces in the Marvel Universe. Apparently, the only thing that can stop the Juggernaut is his need to pause every other round to catch his breath and discover his inner peace. Are you serious?! No Indomitable for the Unstoppable Juggernaut?! Um… okay. Whatever. At least he’s still got Charge…
Charge doesn’t show up until the third click!! What?! WHAT?! WHAT?! He starts with freaking Sidestep? Those are basically activation clicks for a guy who is always in his power in the comics. He doesn’t have to “activate” anything! In the name of all that’s Holy, he’s called the freaking Juggernaut, not Doctor Twinkletoes. No. NO! That makes no sense. You’re making no sense right now, WizKids!! Get it together! And lock it up! I mean, all he’s got going for him at this point is his high printed damage…
Uh, you mean the 3 that he starts with? The printed damage for his first five clicks is 3?!?! That’s all you get until click 6! Somebody up there hates me. That’s the only explanation I have.
–Wait—he has a Flurry click with a 12 Attack, 18 D with Impervious and (finally!!) a printed damage of 4! Oh! Well, okay, now we’re talking! When you add in the object he’ll most likely be carrying—Nope! Sorry to interrupt, but he loses Super Strength on that click. <Sigh> Well, still, if he can stay in that 12 AV 4 Damage range for a few clicks he’ll—Ah-uh. No, that’s his last click. The one slot that’s the hardest for him get to. … I hate you. Almost as much as I hate this piece. Of $#!+. That is clearly NOT THE #$#@IY@I Juggernaut!!

Let’s just move on before I need a barf bag. Somewhere, Kuurth is facepalming.

4. Absorbing Man (#033) 145 points (Experienced Version)—Rare:

3. Bulldozer (#014) 145 points (Experienced Version)—Common:
Okay, these two get grouped together because they all have the same problem: way too many points for little to no upgrade over their Rookie versions!!
Absorbing Man at 95 points (a savings of 50 points!) still gets you 6 clicks, starts with the same Charge, same AV (10), same damage (3) and same specials! Why pay 50 more points for a measly two clicks of stuff you’re already getting?! Unless your Reverting Greithoth, I’d stay away.
Then there’s Bulldozer. As I mentioned in the Top Ten set review, he’s an even bigger rip-off! 75 more points for the Experienced version and you only get two more clicks. Same Charge, same AV, same DV (granted his Toughness is actually a slightly better Invuln in those first two clicks, but still…), and one click of 4 damage. One. For 75 points. I could run a rookie Piledriver and Splitlip for that much! Or a Booklip and an Asgardian Troll. The possibilities are endless!

2. Crossbones (#206) 62 points—Common: Not completely useless, just not nearly as good as his main set version (which only costs 17 more points and adds, among other things, Sharpshooter). Good starting AV (11), and a great Team Ability, but that’s pretty much where the good news ends. His range is only five, which—when combined with the presence of a single click each of Charge and Super Strength (Super Strength? For Crossbones? Am I missing something?)—I guess means that he’s supposed to be a close combat beatstick? Except that there are way better options, some for even less points (Rookie Piledriver anyone?), if that’s what you’re looking for.

1. Rescue (#202) 58 points—Common: You’ve heard me sing the praises of the 65-point Rescue before as one of the Top Ten figures in this set. Well, you will not hear me praise this one. The Gravity Feed Rescue is only 7 less points, but you lose soooo, soooo much. How much could one figure lose for 7 points? Let’s take a look.
–This Rescue has Phasing/Teleport, which the main set Rescue does not have, and they both fly and thus both can carry. Okay, so that’s good. But Gravity Feed Rescue’s movement is only 7 (which means it’s just FIVE when she’s carrying someone!) versus the main set’s whopping 11! Plus that Rescue has Force Blast and the trait that lets her carry up to 3 other characters if those characters are not on their first click.
–This Rescue has NO range, NO starting Attack Power and a very average 9 Attack Value; she gains Super Strength to go with her ZERO printed damage on clicks 2-4 (Uh… thanks?), but the main set Rescue starts with an 11 Attack Value that fuels her FIRST CLICK TK AND Double Incapacitate with 6 range!!
–This Rescue does have Traited Support and Toughness (the other has Toughness as well; it’s just not Traited), which is fine, but she has NO ADDITIONAL Damage Powers. The other Rescue has Toughness in the usual spot, and eventually picks up Support, but when she starts the game she has a limited Perplex (on anything but damage)!!
–Since this Rescue has Traited Toughness, surely there must be some incredibly interesting power on her defense slot, right? WRONG. She has a 16 defense value with Defend. Wow. She can give her incredibly putrid defense value to any friendly character she’s adjacent to. Great. I’ll get right on that…
And on and on it goes. On the first click alone, the main set version adds Force Blast, TK, Double Incapacitate, +4 Movement, +2 AV, +1 Defense and PERPLEX!! For a measly 7 more points. Bleeeeeccccch. Stop paying retail point costs and stay from this sucker’s “bargain.”
As a matter of fact, just stay away from the Gravity Feed figs altogether. If you happen to pull a chase from the main set, the Gravity Feed Iron Man is not bad, and the Dreadnaught is okay; everything else is “meh” at best, unless you just have to have every average Alpha Flight fig that came out this year… Speaking of which:

Happy New Year!!

Here’s to another great year of Clixin’!