ROC’ing the Meta… Just like Shuma-Gorath Did!! (Or, A Look at the Top Pieces for ROC Super Qualifiers!!)

Welcome Back!

Can you smell what the Rock is cooking?

Can you smell what the ROCK is cooking?


 

So I’ve continually talked about how the ROC’s are great source of information for the current Meta. Well, on a whim (and somehow finding myself with some rare time to kill) I decided I should tally up all of the Top 4 finishing teams from the entire history of the ROC to see who the Top 10 most popular figures are. Why? Well, if you’re thinking of entering a ROC tourney near you, this might give you an idea of which army you want to build; but even if this doesn’t give you an idea of what to play, it should (perhaps even more importantly) give an idea of what you’ll be facing in the finals if you make the Top 16.

Welcome... to the ROC! (How many ROC puns will I make today? I dunno, but that's prolly not my last).

Welcome… to the ROC! (How many ROC puns will I make today? I dunno, but that’s prolly not my last).

For the record, there are 21 tournament results posted. Four teams from each would be 84 team results to work with, but one tournament only posted the top two teams. All of which means that I’m pulling data from 82 Top 4 teams total.

In the interest of total transparency, the picture below should illuminate the primary methodology I used to determine the following results.

"Me calculating the ROC results for my article. Damn, I'm a handsome beast!"

Showing my work.

Before getting to the actual figures, here are the ranks for the most popular:

Resources

Resources:

1. FIR100C The Book of the Skull
2. NMLR100C Utility Belt
3. IIMR100C Power Plant
4. AVXR100 The Phoenix Force
5. IGR101C Infinity Gauntlet

The Book of the Skull is my favorite Resource, so this pleased me. HypeFox is more of a Phoenix Force or Infinity Gauntlet guy.

Actually, Gen13 came in last in terms of frequency of use, just after the nonexistent Great Lakes Avengers Team Base.

Actually, Gen13 came in last in terms of frequency of use, just after the Great Lakes Avengers Team Base. Which is not a real thing. Better luck next time, Fairchild!

Team Bases:

1. WXMT004 New Mutants
Tied for 2nd. TTT002R Justice League, WXMT001E X-Men: Blue Strike Force, WXMT006 Hellfire Club: Inner Circle

No other team bases have made a Top 4 table, which surprised me. Would have thought Trinity of Sin would have shown up at some point.

Bystander

Bystander Tokens:

1. FIH002 Warbot (Rocket)
2. FIB002 Skadi’s Warbot
3. FIB003 Damaged Warbot
4. FIB005 Super Fan
5. FIB018 Store Clerk

Skadi’s Warbot coming in second is the upset here.

And now without further ado here’s…

ROC

The Top 10 Figures of the ROC.

Tied for 10th place. WXM023B Cerise – Cerise is the only representative from the Wolverine and the Xmen set and one of only 2 primes to make the list. She arguably would have made it even higher on this list except for popularity of the other prime and the fact that they can’t be played together. For 60 points, she’s one of the most efficient Soldier and Police keyworded figs around.

Tied for 10th place. SLOSH008 Phantom Girl – When Phantom Girl phases through opposing characters she gets to target one of them with a close combat action. Every other figure with a similar power gets a close combat attack (like all those characters with hypersonic speed). The fact that she gets a close combat action gives her unique ability to use the bat belt and NMLR106 Handcuffs to handicap opposing figures. From SLOSH039 Bizarro to WKM-G01R Shuma-Gorath, she can wrap them up tight.

Tied for 10th place. IIM051 Iron Pharaoh (1500 BC) – This blog has done plenty to hype this piece (here and here) so it’s inclusion on this list is no surprise. What is surprising is that no other piece from the Invincible Iron Man set made this list.

Tied for 10th place. GG026 Mole Man – How did this make the list? WKM-G01R Shuma-Gorath is the biggest reason. He is set to be retied by July 1 2014 and it seems like WizKids made DP043 Black Talon as his replacement.

9th place. JL52016R Enchantress – The 2nd best way to spend 50 points in modern. She is not only support, but a decent secondary attacker as well. Especially with a resource.

8th place. SLOSH057 Lydea Mallor – The best of the Chases from SLOSH. Lydea is one part Out-of-the-Shadows Batman and one part relic stealing Cat Woman. Her Regen stop click at the end of her dial is just icing on the cake.

7th place. M10A009E Iron Man – If you absolutely know your opponents are playing a resource, then this is their kryptonite. His dial is very efficient for it’s cost, but his trait is the only reason people ever play him.

Tied for 5th and 6th place. SOGV003A GCPD Motorcycle (Autopilot) – This is never played without the GCPD ATA. If you’ve played this without the GCPD ATA, you did it wrong! Combined the cycle and ATA allow to carry two characters regardless of stat symbols 4 squares a turn as a few action. That police motorcycle is a steal for it’s point cost.

Tied for 5th and 6th place. SLOSH039 Bizarro – HypeFox once told that this should be my favorite character in the whole game. I love stop clicks and for this guy every click is a stop click. Depending on point value this is the toughest character ever made.

4th place. FFCW006 Scarlet Witch – She very similar to JL52016R Enchantress, but slightly better. She’s been a popular piece to play when she was first introduced due to her combination of perplex, probability control, and barrier on the same character. She is set to be retied by July 1 2014 and it seems like WizKids made FFDP006R Mercy as her replacement.

3rd place. GG014 Astral Dr. Strange – This is a great way to spend 13 points. The free move definitely puts it over the top. However, a lot of the play this piece has seen lately is with SLOSH048 Tellus. The combo is free move this 13 point figure into range and then have your whole team shoot through it. On your opponent’s turn the only thing in range is this 13 point figure.

2nd place. ASM017B Brother Voodoo – Brother Voodoo is the most popular prime character to date. He’s also my pick for most powerful character (for the points) ever. He’s made the top teams from the very first ROC all the way through the most current one. It seems like a lot of top 4 teams start with Brother Voodoo and fill in the rest from there. Think about this-of the 82 published top 4 ROC teams, this character was on 24 of them (EDITOR’S NOTE: DAAAAAMMMMN)!

1st place. FI301 Splitlip – With 25 total top 4 ROC appearances it’s the most popular figure. How did it get there? Of all of the teams I looked at that used the book of the skulls, all of them included Splitlip. There are a few teams out there that played him without the book, but no one played the book without him. The fact that he’s the cheapest source of enhancement in modern shouldn’t be forgotten either.

So there you go! If you go to a ROC, expect to see some–if not most–of these characters across the board from you.  Thanks for reading.

And keep on ROC'ing! Okay, that was my last pun...

And keep on ROC’ing! Okay, that was my last pun…

 

War of the Light…ened Wallets!! (Or, The Weekly Roundup for 06/01/2014!!)

Roundup

 

Let the games begin!! With many venues running War of the Light Month 1 this week (and some of the pieces ALREADY turning up on eBay–naughty naughty!!), peeps are getting excited for some batteries and rings! Of course, if you don’t pull that Chase or Prime you’re looking for, you’re still in luck! They can be yours for a mere $100+!! Good Lord. This set is going to cause some divorces and bankruptcies. Which is to say, it should be a lot of fun!

Speaking of the opposite of fun, my Tigers–just like that guy you know who dropped out of community college after his third year to, y’know, go “find himself”–suddenly just cannot get there s#!t together.

In the last two weeks:

–Joe Nathan, the closer, decided it was a good idea to blame his rookie third baseman Nick Castellanos for causing Nathan’s billionth blown save of the year because Castellanos dropped what would have been out number 2 in the ninth inning of a game against Oakland. That drop, according to Nathan, is why Nathan went ahead AND SERVED UP A #$%^#($&^#)$^)#^$)#^$in’ meatball on the very first pitch to Josh Donaldson for a walkoff 3-run homerun. Without that drop, by Nathan’s insane reasoning, that homerun never would have happened, because Nathan could have taken a different “approach” to the Donaldson at-bat, and could have “played with him” a little more.” Excuse me? Because of one error, you had to throw every subsequent pitch slow and right down the middle like it’s a glorified batting practice session and not the bottom of the freaking NINTH?!?! Bravo, Joe Nathan. Not only did you fail again, but this time you almost took down your entire team using only your ego! Closers blow saves around the league all the time. You know what most of those Closers do, Joe? They get back at it the next day, and sooner than later people forget about the blown save. Part of being a Closer is not being a slave to your own ego and admitting when you screwed up, neither of which involves laying the blame for a loss on the shoulders of a rookie whose had less than a year to learn third base after being moved from the outfield and whose error DID NOT END THE GAME!! That is weak.

Great job, Joe. Not only did you fail again, but this time you almost took down your entire team using only your ego!

This is what “Fail” looks like.

–Our starters have gone from the best in the league to the flat-out worst. Why? Only God and Pitching Coach Jeff Jones know. Scratch that–if Jones knew, presumably he would FIX IT! And hey, Max Scherzer–let’s stop throwing teammates under the bus as well, eh? How about everyone just chills the #^#@ out? Just for a minute, okay? Geeezzzz…

–Suddenly, if Victor or Miggy doesn’t light it up, our offense can’t hit. Grrrrr…..

Alright!! Enough negativity!! You’re not here to read my Tigers screeds! No, you’re here for…

THE WEEKLY ROUNDUP!!

PODCASTS:

Dial H

Dial H for Heroclix just released Episode 47! It was a little shorter than normal because host Hunter Smith is knee-deep in Wedding prep–in fact, he should be married and off on his Honeymoon as you read this!

Push to Regen

–Push to Regen is still cooking up Episode 2.4!! Check their Podbean for updates and the first three episodes of Season 2!

This is Ultimate Play, b!tches!

The Quarry’s latest episode is … Episode 19, which features interviews with and perspectives from a bunch of different recent ROC winners (the Roundtable has the week off). I listened to most of this ep–some great insight from the recent tourney champs!


Welcome... to the ROC!

Welcome… to the ROC!

ROC:

–Up to date upcoming ROC tourney listings have been released, which you can find right HERE!

–A brief announcement was made that the recent “Watchlist 2: Electric Bugaloo” changes will go into effect, well, immediately.

–What’s been winning at the ROC Super Qualifiers lately? Well, to answer that, I’d have to review every ROC team that made the Top Four and compile all that data into an article that was able to articulate the information in a way that makes sense. And… I’m sure Ninwashui will get right on that.

Wizkids

WIZKIDS NEWS:

–A few weeks ago, WizKids announced a monthly New OP kit system!


Preview

Previews:

–New War of the Light dials went up last week–most notably Kyle Rayner as a White Lantern–but pretty much every Wave 1 dial is up at HCREALMS.com in their Unit section!

–They weren’t officially spoiled, but four of the Light Entity Chases went up on HCREALMS.com as well, and my, are they (very nearly, depending on which figures you choose to put them on! If you choose, say, Banshee, he can become a World Breaker in no time fast! What’s that? He already basically is a Worldbreaker? Uh… well, here’s a quick Build to make my point–in fact we’re going to make this our:

Army of the Week

Army of the Week:

Team Name: It’s Going to Get a Little Loud

Theme: None (Honestly, you probably won’t need it)

DP051 Banshee98 Points

WOL061P Entity – 25

FI301 Splitlip20

FIH005 Navy Seaman8

DP059 Kingpin118

FIR001C The Book of the Skull30

=299

With this army, you’re sacrificing Theme Team Bonuses for the right to essentially use 2 Resources on one character-Banshee. Assuming you select Banshee with the Book and choose Damage Power and Damage Value via the Possessed Trait from Entity (POSSESSED: Click the Possessor’s dial to the same click number as this character and change it during the game in the same way that this character’s dial changes. At the beginning of each of your turns or after this character takes or is healed of damage and actions resolve, you may choose 1 power showing on one Possessor’s dial and 1 combat value on one Possessor’s dial higher than this character’s printed combat value. This character can use that power and modifies that combat value by +1 until your next turn or until it is healed or takes damage. If the Possessor is turned to a KO click, it is removed from the game immediately.), on his top click, Banshee has: the Police and X-Men abilities; 8 Range; Running Shot with a BotS-enhanced 12 Movement; 11 Attack with Penetrating/Psychic Blast and Smoke Cloud; 18 Defense with Super Senses and Barrier; 4 Damage with Probability Control and Perplex. Then, if he chooses to Carry Kingpin with him (Holy God!!), he gets all that (Except he can only move 4 spaces for Running Shot instead of 6) PLUS his Damage goes up to 5 (from Kingpin’s Enhancement) and he also gains Sharpshooter, RCE and freakin’ Precision Strike. Oh, and due to Banshee’s own Trait, from which this army gets its name (IT’S GOING TO GET A LITTLE LOUD: Opposing characters within 6 squares can’t use Super Senses. Opposing characters within 6 squares can’t use Impervious, Invincible, or Invulnerability but can use Toughness instead. When Banshee hits a character that can’t use a power due to this trait, increase damage dealt to that character by 1.), if you’re close enough, your target can’t use Super Senses AND your damage goes to 6. Again, you still have a Perplex floating around.  I mean, that’s borderline psychotic.

And that’s without a Theme Team. One of these Chases may actually make someone like White Phoenix Hope viable–and still be a Theme Team! Who thought we’d see that?!

 

Hooray for Hollllllywooood!!

Hooray for Hollllllywooood!!

–X-Men: Days of Future Past was pretty damn good! Really solid flick, prolly the second best of the entire franchise (after X2: X-Men United). 3 out of 4 Stars, by my reckoning!

Critical Missives:

–Two big articles last week: a gigantic 4600+ word monster on the best Chases in the Meta (not including the upcoming War of the Light Chases, which easily would have made the cut); and our first DeadPool set review (Ninwashui’s)–my version will be coming in the next couple days!

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

 

 

 

Shadow of the Colossals!! (Or, The Build–02/08/2014!!)

Colossus

[Editor’s Note: We’re back! Illness and other factors meant we had to go dark for a week, but we now return you to your regularly scheduled programmingThe Build is (hopefully) gonna be a semi-regular column wherein I discuss an upcoming tourney at my local venue and explain what I’m playing and why, and then I’ll write a follow-up entry detailing the results.]

Normally, my venue only allows Modern Age figs, ATA’s and Relics, and generally between 300 and 400 points. But for the next tourney, they’re cooking up something a little special…

So let’s get to it!

The Game:

600 Points. Modern Age. Anything Goes (Resources, Relics, Colossals, ATA’s, Team Bases & Vehicles all allowed).

The Build:

I want to build a team that’s both competitive AND fun to play. Basically, that means I’m not going to go with 5 Mole Men, The Power Plant and Shuma–I’m trying to beat my opponents, not make them hate me. And that type of army–cheap, broken, stupid–is not what I want to play. I want a team that will be pretty good UNDER the current rules and not one that will be good because it EXPLOITS the current rules.

Going in, I know I have a few fixed points for this build. I already know I want to play a Colossal (because it is so rare for my venue to allow them and, well, dammit, they’re fun to play!), and I know I want to play a resource (for the same reasons).

So I already know a little bit about what I’m going to play. Let’s start with the resource.

I own four resource dials in total. The Infinity Gauntlet (for which I own 4 of the 6 gems); The Utility Belt (with only three pouches); The Penguin (for only a slight 10 point investment, he’s sneaky good); and the Book of the Skull (7 of 8 Hammers, which is all I really need–plus Splitlip, who basically takes almost all of the drawbacks away from the book and just makes it stupid broken). AvX hasn’t happened at my venue, and may not ever happen [Editor’s Note: Bleeccch. This sucks! Stupid distributors…], so the Phoenix dial is not available to me.

–The Infinity Gauntlet is great, but without all the gems, I’m going to cross it off my list (although it would be awesome to play with the team I have in mind–more on that later).

–The Utility Belt is also a non-starter, for mostly the same reason (I don’t own enough attachments), and I never liked it as much as the Gauntlet anyway. It’s still ridiculously powerful (what resource isn’t?), but the nerfing of Prep Time really puts it at the bottom of my list.

–The Penguin is a nifty resource that can be thrown in to an army at that last minute when you find out you’ve miscalculated and you need 10 more points. Unlike the other resources in the game, the Penguin probably isn’t sticking around for the whole match, but he’s a great boon for the first four to six turns. After that, he’s probably run his course and is out of the game.

–The Book of the Skull is damn near broken. I could make a very compelling argument that two of its eight Relic components (Angrir’s Hammer and Nul’s Hammer) ARE broken. And even though I don’t have Skadi’s Hammer (only available in the Blitzkrieg USA Pack), I still have the other seven Hammers and Splitlip, which means that all four slots on the dial will be active AND I can give two Hammers to three different characters should I choose to.

I don’t have the Batcave or the Power Plant. This decision is really pretty easy–I’m going to go with the Book of the Skull and Splitlip.

My Army:

The Book of the Skull–27 Points.

Splitlip–20 Points.

Okay! So far, the Build stands at 47 Points. We’re off and running! Next, let’s talk about Colossals. Cuz I really want to play one, and I don’t have a ton of choices. The three Modern Age Colossals I currently own are:

Thanos (Infinity Gauntlet); Oatu the Watcher (Galactic Guardians); Master Mold (Galactic Guardians)

And that’s about it. This decision is going to be a little harder than choosing a resource because even though I only have 3 figures to choose from, they each can be played at multiple point levels that would fit this build.

Let’s start with The Watcher; he can be played at three different point levels: 400, 200 and 50.

–The 400 point level features 16 clicks and builds slowly (oh my stars and garters, does it ever build SLOOOOOWLY) in damage output (he starts with a stinkin’ 2 and keeps it for his FIRST FOUR CLICKS!), but he’s got a really cool defensive power (POWER NEGATING FORCE-FIELD: Uatu The Watcher can use Energy Shield/Deflection and Toughness. When an opposing character misses Uatu The Watcher with an attack, counter all powers that character possesses until that character’s next turn.) that looks even better when you remember that he has a 12 (TWELVE!!) range. So your opponent is basically going to be dealing with at least a 19 defense until he gets in close. However, with the 2 damage Uatu starts with, even with starting Outwit (and there’s no guarantee in a 600 point game that your opponent’s main striker won’t also have Power Cosmic or Quintessence, which would render the Outwit useless unless you’re also running GG Adam Warlock), you’re just not going to be doing enough damage to justify his 400 point cost.Towards the end of his dial, his damage does ramp up and he starts getting things like Pen/Psy and Mind Control, but chances are the entire rest of your team could be KO’d by then. Now, if this was, like, a 1200 point game? Well yeah, then he’d be a great supporting piece. But for this game, he’s just not the best option. As much as I like Uatu, his 400 point dial is simply a nonstarter for this build.

–200 point Uatu is just the opposite. He’s practically a DPS machine, with a little bit of range support via Enhancement thrown in. He’s only got six clicks, but there’s not a bad click in the bunch. Solid 18 Defense with either Invuln or Impervious the entire dial, and he starts out doing 4 damage with Pen/Psy on an 11 Attack (or 13, if you want to give him one of the Serpent’s Hammers!). This is a strong contender for a secondary attacker; it will just depend on which figure I go with for my main piece.

–50 point Uatu changes everything up again. He will deal no damage; in fact, he’s forbidden from attacking. But he is hard to kill with starting 18 Super Senses on Defense, and he will, depending on click number, provide you with either Outwit, Probability Control, or Perplex. The downside is, every time you use one of those powers, he’s got a 66% chance to take one unavoidable damage. Still, for 50 points, you have to view him almost like a second resource. When viewed that way, his dial goes from seeming a little overcosted to almost being undercosted, since there’s no other way in the game (that I’m aware of) to assign a second resource to your force. In a game like this, your opponent is almost doing you a favor if he bothers to actually attack Uatu–every attack directed at him is an attack directed away from your actual force, and with the Defense slot I mentioned above, there’s every chance that your opponent will miss! In a “Hammer Raining From the Sky” environment (as Ninwashui puts it) such as this, there’s also one last thing to consider: The Watcher can fling Hammers! His “unavoidable damage” Trait only kicks in when he uses Prob, Perplex or Outwit. And while he can’t use the free Quake attack that Hammer landings provide, you CAN use him to get Hammers off of the Book faster and fling them at friendly characters to let THEM Quake up a storm, if you wish! 50 Point Uatu is also a strong contender to make my team!

Now let’s look at Master Mold. He can be played at two different point levels that would fit this game: 600 and 200.

–600 Point Master Mold is pretty sick. He can churn out mini-sentinels to tie up your opponent–oh hell, who am I kidding? I’m playing Thanos.

cropped-cropped-photo-1.jpg

I mean.

It’s freaking.

THANOS!! He’s the masthead of this site. Of course I’m playing Thanos. Is Master Mold more efficient? Possibly. I don’t care. Thanos wearing the Infinity Gauntlet is right up there with Warlock wearing the Infinity Gauntlet as my favorite piece ever made (as you might be guessing, Infinity Gauntlet is my favorite story of all time).

So really, I have three choices then for my main piece in this build. Thanos has a 500, 400 and 300 Point dial, and each are appealing, but for different reasons.

–500 Point Thanos has 20 clicks and 1 weakness Trait (MAKING THE GRAB FOR THE GAUNTLET: If the result of a successful close combat attack roll made by an opposing character against Thanos is a critical hit, after actions resolve that character may make another close combat attack that deals penetrating damage targeting Thanos as a free action.) that gives me pause, even though it won’t go off very often. His other Trait (SHRINKING THE HULK: After Thanos takes damage from an opposing character’s attack, either give that character a shrink token or, if there is already a shrink token assigned, move the shrink token to that character. A character with a shrink token modifies its combat values by -1.) can be awesome in a game like this depending on how many characters your opponent is fielding. The more you whittle your opponent’s force down, the closer he gets to essentially having a permanent -1 to all his combat values on his best fig. Later in the dial, he also gets an attack power that lets him place two squares of blocking terrain after he KO’s someone, and a damage power that gives him Exploit Weakness and doesn’t allow lines of fire to be drawn to him from more than 6 squares away.

His attack never goes above a 12, but his defense stays consistently high, especially early on. Opening click Prob is nice, but at 500 Points, there’s just not much space left to build an army around him. So this Thanos gonna be a pass.

–400 Point Thanos has similar stats but only 11 clicks of life. His Trait (DISSENSION IN YOUR RANKS: Opposing characters lose all keywords. Opposing characters adjacent to Thanos can’t use team abilities.) is beyond awesome, especially in a game like this, and you get Terraxia as a free addition to your force. She’s a 100 Point character with Charge and Super Strength and, as long as you’re playing her with Thanos, Perplex. Finally, on five of his 11 clicks he gets: TORTURE MY “GRANDDAUGHTER”: Thanos can use Penetrating/Psychic Blast. When he does, if he targets a single opposing character and hits, counter all speed and attack powers the hit character possesses until your next turn. Pen/Psy is one of the best attack powers out there; Pen/Psy that Outwits Hypersonic Speed, Running Shot, Charge, Pulse Wave, Pen/Psy, Steal Energy or whatever the hell else your enemy may have in his speed or attack slots? That’s ridiculous. Btw, here’s a picture of me imagining 400 Point Thanos with Angrir’s Hammer and Mokk’s Hammer:

the_joker_smile_by_angrypig-d4k075d

Also on the plus side, I’d have 153 Points left over for support pieces (after the 47 I’m using for Booklip). That should be just enough to round out my army. This Thanos is the leader in the clubhouse, but let’s look at 300 Point Thanos.

–300 Point Thanos has one less click and about the same raw stats. His Trait (IMPRISON MY BROTHER: At the beginning of the first turn using this dial, you may choose an opposing character. Place that character in its own starting area and give it two action tokens.) is great when playing all five issues of the Infinity Gauntlet in a row; for this game, it’s merely very good. For most of his dial, his attack slot alternates between a souped-up Pulse Wave (if lines of fire are drawn to more than one opposing character, it does 2 damage instead of one) and Pen/Psy, which is pretty damn good. But he doesn’t mess with opposing keywords or Team Abilities, and he doesn’t give you Terraxia. His last damage power (UNNATURAL DISASTERS: Give Thanos a power action and roll a d6. Use the effect described by that roll below. 1-2 Earthquake; Deal each character that can’t use the Flight ability 1 damage. 3-4 Tidal Wave; Choose an edge of the map. Knock back each opposing character 2 squares, in a straight line away from the chosen edge of the map. 5-6 Tornado; Choose any 2 adjacent squares on the map not occupied by a character. Thanos can use Quake as a free action as if he occupied both the chosen squares.) is probably the most convoluted and unreliable power Thanos gets on any of his dials. If you could just choose which option you want, it would be “meh” at best. The fact that it’s random means that it’s possibly one of the worst uses of Thanos’s time that I can think of.

I’m leaning toward 400 Point Thanos. Is there a more efficient use of 100 Points than Terraxia? Almost certainly, but she works well with Thanos and fits thematically, even if I’m not fielding a Theme Team.

Alright! I have my Colossal! And it only took, like, 1200 words of prattling to make my decision! Yay!

So, to review:

My Army:

The Book of the Skull–27 Points

Splitlip–20 Points

Thanos–400 Points

That’s 447 Points. 153 Points left to round out my army. I have a few Primes I’m considering: Hannibal King, Brother Voodoo and Cerise. GG LE Iron Man would be perfect, except he’s 150 and would use up everything I have left. Still, his Colossal Mind Control power is awesome. Another problem–I don’t own him. The other main support piece I’m considering is Experienced AvX Scarlet Witch. Her 8 range is huge. I’m not as concerned about Team Abilities killing me with Thanos’s Trait, but she can definitely shut them down even more. The fact that she gets Prob, Support AND Perplex means she’s winner. Which leaves me with 53 Points!!

Aldrich Killian is most known for shutting down ATA’s (good lord, if nothing else, I will shut down TA’s in this tourney!), but he also has the Hydra TA and Support. And when he heals someone, their combat values are +1 for the next turn. If he heals Thanos even once, that could be game changing.

And finally, to support Killian, I’m throwing in a stupid Flock of Bats for 15 Points. Since Killian can use Stealth on his top clicks, the Bats will give him +1 on those Support rolls. Not to mention that they can be an annoying tie-up piece at some point too. [Editor’s Note: Whoops! Totally forgot that Support doesn’t allow modifiers! Thanks to several folks for pointing this out. Begone, Bats! I’m gonna replace them with a Warbot of some kind, methinks!]

So, my final choices look like this:

My Army:

The Book of the Skull–27 Points

Splitlip–20 Points

Thanos–400 Points

Scarlet Witch–100 Points

Aldrich Killian–35 Points

Flock of Bats–15 Points

Random Warbot–10 Points

Secret Avengers ATA-5 Points (for the Scarlet Witch)

That’s 597!! Alright! So, that’s my army. Later in February, I’ll post my results with this motley crew, and we’ll see if any of my theories about this environment held water. What would you change if this was your army? Post your choices below! Given the same restrictions, let me know how you would create…

THE BUILD!!

Who’s the Boss? Tony is the boss!

Iron MN

So a few weeks ago when ranking the IIM pieces I rated IMM015 Tony Stark 8th most powerful in the set. In my original review I told you his defensive specials made him well-nigh invulnerable 1 on 1. I missed the part where his auto regeneration only works if he doesn’t take damage on your opponents turn. He’s still very strong defensively, but he’s not the support version of IIM103 Absorbing Man that I thought he was.

In that same article I said “There has to be a way to break this piece and it’s Mole Man-like ability to make you armor pieces awesome. I think I’ve found it. I call this team...

photo (5)

Golden Falcon, Destroying!

  • IIM015 Tony Stark
  • IIM015 Tony Stark
  • IIM051 Iron Pharaoh (1500 BC)
  • FI301 Splitlip
  • FIR100C The Book of the Skull (complete)
  • Total =300

How It works: This team is centered around turning Iron Pharaoh’s gentle golden falcon into something akin to the Terminator from Terminator 1. Slow moving, but indestructible and able to take out anything that gets near him. Yeah that guy. The power reads, GOLDEN FALCON, SOARING: When Iron Pharaoh is first placed on the map, place a Falcon special terrain marker in an adjacent square. Give Iron Pharaoh a free action to move this marker up to 3 squares. Iron Pharaoh can draw lines of fire and count range (up to 3 squares) from the Falcon marker using Improved Targeting: Ignores Hindering Terrain, Ignores Elevated Terrain, Ignores Outdoor Blocking Terrain, Ignores Characters.” Now imagine funneling you entire team’s attacks through something that ignores any movement restrictions (even walls are meaningless), any targeting restrictions (stealth is meaningless), and most importantly can’t be hurt back! At least when GSX Professor X stayed in his starting zone you could kill the guys he sent out. The falcon ignores everything!

Imagine this scenario:  you start the turn with your falcon 6 squares away from your opponents best figure. You move the Falcon up 3 squares and you are in range. Start with outwit. Use Split Lip’s Enhancement and the two Tonys’ perplexes to up Pharaoh’s damage by 3. Nul’s Hammer ups his attack by 2. You attack through the Falcon for 6 damage. Then Tony Stark does mind control and you attack for 5. Then the other Tony mind controls and you attack for 4. That’s 15 damage that you can spread around and you got to use outwit first! The next turn the Falcon moves for free and you can do it all again! Against some teams you could KO everyone before they are even in range to attack any of your figures! Try to always keep the falcon between your real team and the opposing team.

What if the opposing team manages to get past the Falcon and get you your actual team? Well the your team should be positioned with the hard-to-KO (and Stealthy) Tony Starks as a wall in front of Splitlip and the Pharaoh. The Pharaoh’s 9 range and hammer-granted running shot should still give you an alpha strike of 3 attacks totaling 15 damage with outwit in the middle. That much damage should give you an edge. If your opponent does manage to somehow kill the Pharaoh the two Tony Starks can be dangerous on their own. They can mind control each other. Drop Skadi’s hammer on one, use perplex, and swing for the fences… twice!

I think this team would have a fighting chance in any competitive tournament. Someone should take it to the next ROC. It can also be used casually at your local venue to make everyone hate you and make your friends give you the nick-name “cheese whiz”.

If you want something more casual that doesn’t say “I lack a moral compass“, try this team:

Bowling for action tokens!

  • IIM015 Tony Stark
  • IIM002 Rescue
  • IM3014 Iron Man Mk 40
  • Total = 300

How It works: This team is much simpler that the one above. Use Rescue’s TK to put Iron Man in position and then use Tony’s Stark Mind control to activate his SONIC BOOM. (Give Iron Man Mk 40 a move action and modify his speed value by +3. Iron Man Mk 40 must move along a horizontal or vertical path until he can’t move. All other characters occupying squares Iron Man Mk 40 moved through are dealt 1 damage and are given an action token. Characters in squares adjacent to the path are given an action token.) Once you sonic boom through the opposing team, have Iron Man use the same power again to get back to where he started. That should double action token and slightly damage the entire opposing team. The next turn you can push and do it again! Eventually you will need to use the perplexes to have Iron Man start attacking, but hopefully the other team will be severely weakened by then. Win or lose, it should be fun.