Team Ideas – The Lazy Mirror Master

A few weeks ago I happened across an article reviewing the “Lazy Stranger” team that Alex Avila used to win the Ohio state Championship. You can view the original article on hcrealms here.

I don't have a picture of Alex Avila, but this is what I imagine it would feel like to face him in HeroClix.

I don’t have a picture of Alex Avila, but this is what I imagine it would feel like to face him in HeroClix.

Here is the team Alex used:

  • FL063E Phantom Stranger (w/JLTWS102 Sloth)
  • JLTW063 Sloth
  • FI001 Thule Society Priest
  • FI001 Thule Society Priest
  • WOLR102 Power Battery (Red Lantern Corps)
  • WOLR302 Red Lantern Ring
  • WOLR202.02 Axe (Red)
  • WOLR202.13 Stop Sign (Red)
  • WOLR202.11 Bulldozer (Red)

Total=300 Points

After the article user SevenBlueSeven  commented, “An insulting team that is useless to most players. Two chase figures plus a Red Lantern Power Batter[y]? How much $$$ was wasted to make this team? Give us something interesting that a common player can build and play for a LOT less $.” User Tyrant318 stated, “this team isn’t even modern legal” (although it was at the time of States–you gotta love the Internet).

So, taking that feedback into account, my challenge today is to build a team that is built around the Mystics TA and Penetrating Poison like Alex’s Build, but it must use cheaper pieces and it must be Modern legal.

Mirror Master of Earth. You have great rage in your heart. You belong to the Red Lantern Corps.

Mirror Master of Earth. You have great rage in your heart. You belong to the Red Lantern Corps.

That brings us to my version of the team:

  • WKD-027 Felix Faust
  • FL020 Mirror Master (80 points)
  • 3 * FL020 Mirror Master (30 Points)
  • WOLR102 Power Battery (Red Lantern Corps)
  • WOLR302 Red Lantern Ring
  • WOLR202.02 Axe (Red)
  • WOLR202.03 Mallet (Red)
  • WOLR202.10 Boxing Glove (Red)
  • WOLR202.11 Bulldozer (Red)
  • WOLR202.13 Stop Sign (Red)
  • AVASAVID-001 Black Widow
  • AVASAVID-002 Hawkeye

Total=300 points

Cost: Admittedly, WKD-027 Felix Faust is still fairly expensive. At the time of this article you can get one delivered to your door for $24.00 including shipping. He’s come way down in price since he was nerfed by Wizkids and you might be able to find him at an auction for quite a bit less. If you need a lower dollar cost then you can remove Felix and a 30 point Mirror Master for FL054 Abra Kadabra. The Red Lantern battery is approximately $41.00, but I had to include it because you really can’t do Penetrating Poison damage without it. Four copies of Flash uncommon FL020 Mirror Master can probably be found via very easy trades. You can probably bring some tacos to your next local event and find eager takers in a “give me a Mirror Master for a taco” trade. [EDITOR’S NOTE: I’m in.]

Let's take extra care to follow the instructions or you'll be put to sleep, and don't forget Taco Tuesday's coming next week!

Let’s take extra care to follow the instructions or you’ll be put to sleep, and don’t forget Taco Tuesday’s coming next week!

Playing the Team: When playing this team we’ll be following Detroit Pistons Coach Stan Van Grundy’s most famous strategy: We’re going to “form an f-ing wall!” Specifically we will be keeping the four copies of FL020 Mirror Master in front of WKD-027 Felix Faust. Faust has Willpower and no real defensive ability, but he sees right through characters so being behind the rest of your army doesn’t slow him down at all.

The Mirror Masters make particularly strong generic pieces at 30 points a piece. Unlike the 21 point generic FI001 Thule Society Priests used on Alex Avila’s team, they are strong combatants and not just tie up pieces. On defense they have Shape Change, Super Senses, and Themed Team Prob (since this is a Themed Team). On offense they have 10 Attack, Precision Strike, 2 targets, 5 Range and 2 Damage. They also have the awesome combination of SideStep and Penetrating Poison. When you consider all four Mirror Masters have the Carry ability AND that they can be carried themselves, you can do a lot of side stepping before surrounding an opposing character for a ton of automatic Penetrating Poison damage at the start of a turn.

You should also remember that all of the Mirror Masters are Wild Cards that can use Felix Faust’s Mystics TA to give an opposing character 1 Damage every time they are hit. So even when you opponent KOs one to avoid taking more Poison Damage, he’ll still take damage back from Mystics. It reminds me of my Grasshopper Team (which, Tyrant318, is still Modern Age legal).

Felix Faust was recently nerfed by Wizkids and most of his abilities were limited to a range of 7. This could pose a problem, unless you have a very good distraction that would allow you to get Felix Faust near the opposing team untouched. I feel that 4 rage filled Mirror Masters just might garner the majority of your opponents attention.

Once Felix is close enough then the Wizkids nerf is rendered moot. He will be back to the figure who spoiled Nationals this year and your opponent will see why he was the subject of the fastest Watch List nerfing that we have ever had. With powers like GREEN BELL OF UTHOOL: (Give Felix Faust a free action. Until your next turn, opposing characters within 7 squares may only be given move actions. Felix Faust must roll his d20 on his next turn.) AND PROJECT THAUMATON: (Give Felix Faust a free action. Until your next turn, opposing characters within 7 squares may only be given free actions. Felix Faust must roll his d20 on his next turn.) – he should give you total board control. Opponents will just be standing there unable to do anything and taking Penetrating Poison from all of the Mirror Masters (or from Felix if he is close enough).

The last two components of this team are the two ID cards I included in the team list: AVASAVID-001 Black Widow, and AVASAVID-002 Hawkeye. I chose those cards because I knew that AAOU106 Hawkeye and AAOU013 Black Widow were both good Call-In figures in the 80 points or less category.

[AUTHOR’S NOTE: Are they the best ones to use? I honestly don’t know. There isn’t a list anywhere that has all of the available Call-In figures by point cost. Hmmm…

Felix Faust can call in either of these ID card figures because he is 80 points and so can all of your Mirror Masters because their Trait states, “Mirror Master is considered 80 points for all game effects except victory points.” So any member of you team can call in any ID Card character that is 80 points or below!

That’s all for now. I think my next Article will revolve around that list that I mentioned didn’t exist for ID card call in characters…

Say Geronimo! (Or, The Weekly Roundup for 11/23/2014!!)

Roundup

Hello again! It’s been a solid month since we last rounded up everything there is to, y’know, round up! And, given that Thanksgiving is just about here, I figured everyone could use a Turkey Day Roundup!

So what’s been going on this last 30 days? Well, War of Light is finally done (at least at most venues); The Flash has finally released (after just a one week delay); and The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies should finally be out now at a Target or hobby store near you (or be coming very soon–depends on where you live, it seems).

All of which means we have a lot to talk about, so let’s get going with…

THE WEEKLY ROUNDUP!!

 

Microphone

PODCASTS:

Dial H

Dial H for Heroclix is new every week; last week, in Episode 71, they opened up their Meta Toolbox to talk about all the Modern Age resources in the context of the Meta! And as a special Holiday bonus, they’ve ALREADY released Episode 72!

Yours truly was lucky enough to finish in the Top 4 of their Dial Design contest this month; if you want to get in on the action, December’s Dial Design should start around November 30th.

This is Ultimate Play, b!tches!

–As far as I can tell, Episode 27 is still the most recent ep of The Quarry. The ROC tab on HCRealms has a link to upcoming events and vaguely mentions an Episode 28, but damned if I can find it!

"We're a Thing again!"

–Well, just as quickly as they came back, ClixCast seems to have gone away! They have yet to release an October or November ep, but you can catch their August and September offerings right here!

 

Welcome... to the ROC!

–You can find the latest ROC tourney announcements right here!

 

Preview

–Just announced on the Heroclix.com Downloads tab: there is going to be a “Spider-Man Symbiotes” Monthly Op Kit in May of next year! Looks like there’ll be 3 different versions of Venom!

–No other current Previews, but that’s to be expected as they JUST released Flash. I’d expect no real previews until WizKids’s annual 12 Days of Clix-Mas promotion, where we’ll get a look at next year’s offerings like Justice League: Trinity War, Avengers Assemble and both Avengers: Age of Ultron offerings!

 

Army of the Week

Army of the Week:

So, we’ve gone on and on about the new R.O.C. Format, but sometimes I think we don’t put enough emphasis on choosing the best supporting characters for the Primary Attacker that you’ve chosen. Let’s take a look at how adding or subtracting a single supporting character can drastically alter a Build in this environment!

First, let’s look at the Iron Pharaoh Build from ROC’ing the Meta 2: Electric Boogaloo!

"Oh! Golden Falcon, no! I just polished this armor!"

“NO! Golden Falcon, I just polished this armor!”

Team Name: Slowness as a Way of Death!!

Theme: None (Not Allowed in current R.O.C. Format)

Map Choice Preference: Ryut (from War of Light Month 6)

Roster:

IIM051 Iron Pharaoh 110 Points

IIM040 Shaman 92

DP020 Weasel27

FI001 Thule Society Priest21

FL031 Turtle 50

=300 Points

What This Build Does:

It slows everything down!! Which, as everyone knows by now, is fantastic for pieces like Iron Pharaoh and Fantomex (who can’t really be played in the current format because E.V.A. is a bystander token, which is illegal in “No Tactics” formats). But the fact that Shaman disables flying and Turtle limits people to moving just 4 squares or less (unless they want to take an additional action token) is just an insane combo. And if you win Map Roll (which will happen roughly 50% of the time, since there are no Themed Team Bonuses), Ryut should be a nightmare for most teams you’ll face. Weasel is the best supporting piece (offers a very limited Prob, +1 to Attack and Range and Enhancement) in the game for Ranged-based attackers, and Thule Society Priest is just there to get pushed into another Prob’r.

Okay, now that we know what the default Build does, let’s change the roster a bit!

This is what's known as a 'Dark Future.' (See what I did there?)

This is what’s known as a ‘Dark Future.’ (See what I did there?)

Team Name: “She Blinded Me With Science!

Theme: None (Not Allowed in current R.O.C. Format)

Map Choice Preference: Ryut (from War of Light Month 6)

Roster:

IIM051 Iron Pharaoh 110 Points

IIM040 Shaman 92

FL031 Turtle 50

SLOSH004 Science Police Officer 45

=297 Points

What This Build Does (Differently): This is a Ninwashui variant. Okay, so we lost our main supporting piece (Weasel) and our secondary supporting/tie-up piece (Thule Society Priest), but we added Science Police Officer. What does this do? Well, it slows down the damage Iron Pharaoh can do by about 20%-25% (basically 3 instead of 4). You can make up for this a little bit by constantly keeping Shaman within range and line of fire of Iron Pharaoh, so he can use his Perplex there. But Science Police Officer combos really brutally with Turtle. Science Police Officer’s top dial Damage Special (TACTICAL DEPLOYMENT: When an opposing character within 8 squares is given a free action, if that character has been given a non-free action this turn, after actions resolve, deal that character 1 unavoidable damage.) means that your opponents best attackers are at risk of shutting themselves down before you even attack them!

Let’s run down everything your opponent has to deal with BEFORE you’ve even attacked them (assuming they don’t Copycat away Shaman–which is an unlikely matchup, but not an impossible one):

1. They can’t fly (after Shaman’s “No Flights” ability goes off);

2. They can’t move more than 4 squares at a time UNLESS they want to take a second action token or take 1 Penetrating Damage.

3. If they do try and burst through with one big move and attack (via Charge, Running Shot, Hypersonic Speed, etc.), they take an UNAVOIDABLE DAMAGE in addition to the extra action token/penetrating damage from Turtle!

With all this SLOWNESS going on, you should have plenty of time to get your Golden Falcon into position to start dropping 3 Damage Outwit Bombs!

 

What We’ve Learned:

While both Builds should be competitive no matter who you play, the first Build is fairly aggressive in terms of lining up its shots (with Weasel, Shaman and the available Probs, you’re trying to line up a 4-5 Damage shot that won’t miss after Outwitting a character’s Defense slot).

The second Build is more of a “take the opportunities that my opponent gives me” sort of army, where you’re basically turning the whole map into a spider’s web and waiting for your opponent to get themselves “stuck” (double-tokened and damaged).

That’s two nearly identical Builds with two significantly different styles of play based solely on which supporting character you choose to use!

 

Hooray for Hollllllywooood!!

–Just in case May 2015 wasn’t going to be a busy enough month for Marvel fans (Avengers 2: Age of Ultron; a ton of different Marvel Heroclix sets), that’s also the month that is currently set to be the premiere month for Daredevil, the first of Marvel’s new Netflix shows.

Let’s take a look at the vital stats!

Show: Daredevil

Showrunner: Drew Goddard (first two episodes); Steven S. DeKnight (current showrunner)

Known Regular Cast:

Daredevil/Matt Murdock: Charlie Cox

Karen Page: Deborah Ann Wolf

Foggy Nelson: Elden Hensen

Wilson Fisk/Kingpin: Vincent D’Onofrio

Claire Temple/Night Nurse (?): Rosario Dawson

Vanessa Marianna: Ayelet Zurer

Known Notable Guest Stars/Recurring Cast:

Stick: Scott Glenn

Ben Urich: Vondie Curtis-Hall

Leland Owlsley: Bob Gunton

Hachiro: Peter Shinkoda

Daredevil will go for at least one season of 13 episodes, with the character currently expected to play a major role in a planned “Defenders” mini-series which would feature all of Marvel’s Hells Kitchen-based heroes teaming up in an Avengers-like fashion.

It is entirely too early to know whether we’ll get a second season of Daredevil and/or when that would premiere. As of now, even the “Defenders” show is somewhat theoretical; if they four lead-up series bomb, you can bet Marvel and Netflix will find a way to can the mini-series.

On the other hand, if Daredevil is wildly successful (and only Netflix and Disney will really have any idea, since digital distribution success is almost impossible for folks outside the industry to determine), I’d expect Marvel to go ahead with both “The Defenders” AND a second season of Daredevil. And possibly even start added some mystical heroes to the Netflix slate, starting with Blade and Ghost Rider.

–The second Marvel Netflix series after Daredevil will be the as-yet-unofficially-titled Jessica Jones series. Casting has begun, with rumors swirling around who will play both Jessica Jones AND recurring guest star (and star of Marvel’s third Netflix series) Luke Cage!!

For the next Weekly Roundup, I’m going to start compiling season-long episode guides of current genre TV shows, starting with…

 

Gotham Title

 

 

Local Tournament Report

Upcoming Local Events:

Annnnd, welcome back to the latest feature category for the Weekly Update–Upcoming Local Events!

For any who have forgotten, this is the spot where we’ll post a few notices about interesting upcoming games at venues in and around Southeastern Michigan, where Critical Missives is based. If any venue would like us to announce an upcoming event anywhere in the country, you can hit us up on Twitter or let us know via feedback to this very post!

–RIW Hobbies in Livonia is hosting a Sealed Draft of War of Light on 12/05!!

–If you’re looking to try D&D Attack Wing, Month One of the Tyranny of Dragons OP is happening at Eternal Games in Warren on 12/06.

–Annnd, one week later, Eternal Games is running a really cool event that they’re calling War of Light: Month 7! This will happen on 12/13 @ 1pm, and will feature a 600-Point Constructed tournament as well as Battle Royal side events throughout the day!

 

Wait--it's already listing this post!! Huh?! Whaa?! Must be magic!!

Critical Missives:

–We were ROC’ing the Meta this past couple weeks. Part 1 is here; Part 2 is here!

Coming up in the next week, we should have a Comics & More War of Light: Month 6 Battle Report PLUS both my AND Ninwashui’s Flash Top Ten Reviews!

And that’s it for this week!! Until then, stay safe, and watch where you draw those lines of fire!

ROC’ing the Meta 2: Electric Boogaloo… PART 2!! (Or, a Look at Where the Meta Might Be Heading!!)

"Hmmm... well, 1 or 2 of these guys might be Meta. Someday... "

“Hmmm… well, 1 or 2 of these guys might be Meta. Someday… “

[To Be Read In Your Best Kiefer Sutherland Voice]

Previously, on Critical Missives:

 

Bill Agent of Aim Soranik Natu Void Tomar Tu Despotellis

–‘Anakin, NO!’

–‘Iron Pharaoh is still a thing, going forward.’

Abin Sur Kyle Raynor ION 2 Shatterstar Helspont

–‘Hail Hydra!

–‘Highfather is a losing strategy.’

ROC  "I;m back?! My dear, I never left!" Krampus 2

This should explain everything.

This should explain everything.

—————————————————————

 

And Now… The Conclusion.”

 

Whew!! Okay! Now that we’re all caught up, let’s look at some figs that ain’t what they used to be when it comes to the ROC, and some figs that people should be looking really closely at that haven’t yet had their day in the sun. Finally, we’ll talk a bit about what we can expect to show up in the Meta now that FLASH has been released!

 

Ain’t What They Used to Be Division:

This is what a good idea poorly executed looks like.

Suuuuure you do, Sweetie…

–DP038 Copycat: Wow. Some idiot was predicting doom and gloom for this ROC season because Copycat would dominate in an environment without Resources and Entities. What’s that? Oh, it was me? And what’s happened (at least so far)? Copycat is nowhere to be seen? Oh. And the lesson, as always? I’m an idiot?

Yup!

So, every now and then, some jackass will Copycat in a ROC now, but they won’t advance even into the Top 8. Why? Well, it’s because of the Construct ability that lets you start with the Nurse on a piece like Abin Sur or Tomar Tu. And Construct pieces are EVERYWHERE! And because of this, if you’re running a Copycat, it’s useless to switch, because your opponent will just put her in a horrible position and then Regenerate (remember, any attachments or effects on the targeted character transfer to Copycat), thus ending the effect. And if you don’t switch, you’ve got 90 Points (basically a third of your force) that’s next to useless. 90 Points that’s so bad that you thought giving it to your opponent for almost ANY qualifying figure they had was a winning strategy.

It doesn’t help her either that the New Mutants Team Base–her best running buddy–is disallowed in the current format.

So yeah, you may run into one or two teams that you can wreck with Copycat, but more often than not you’re cutting your own throat by playing her in this format. I couldn’t have been more mistaken in where I thought this Meta was heading, and I’ve never been happier to be so wrong!

"He's better than me?Wait, doesn't Speed Demon know that I'M supposed to be the Prime?"

He’s better than me? Wait, doesn’t Speed Demon know that I’M supposed to be the Prime?

–DP053B Whizzer: Hell of a dial. Hell of a power set. Hell of a piece! It’s just that Speed Demon does everything Whizzer does, but better. And without taking up that valuable Prime slot that most folks are using for Brother Voodoo, Tomar Tu or Abin Sur.

Just as a refresher for those of you keeping score at home, let’s talk for a minute about the differences between Whizzer and Speed Demon (you can follow along at HCRealms.com):

–Whizzer ignores Elevated, Water and Blocking Terrain (and Characters, but so does Speed Demon); Speed Demon ignores Hindering Terrain. This is pretty much a wash; you’ll certainly encounter more Hindering Terrain than anything else, but the ability to run up walls or through them, or over water in a pinch with Whizzer is pretty cool. ADVANTAGE: EVEN

–Whizzer can make TWO attacks during his Hypersonic movement, but only during his first two clicks. Speed Demon knows the same trick ON HIS LAST FOUR CLICKS. ADVANTAGE: SPEED DEMON.

–Whizzer has Indomitable. Speed Demon doesn’t. ADVANTAGE: WHIZZER

–Speed Demon has the Speed Cyclone Uplift Trait, arguably one of the ten best Traits Wizkids has ever made. Whizzer has no Traits. MASSIVE ADVANTAGE: SPEED DEMON

Whizzer here gets a lil’ closer to his non-Prime brother in a format where keywords don’t matter (Speed Demon’s are waaaay better), but otherwise, save the 10 Points and go with Speed Demon.

FINAL TALLY: Speed Demon wins, 2-1.

And that is why Whizzer is in this category. He was great when the ROC was just starting to roll out, but–especially with almost every team running some sort of Prime secondary figure–Whizzer is just too expensive at the moment, especially since we know how good Speed Demon is now.

"No, I've not seen the Earthen cinema classic 'Basic Instinct.' Why do you ask?"

No, I’ve not seen the Earthen cinema classic ‘Basic Instinct.’ Why do you ask?”

–SLOSH052 Highfather: Actually, I think we discussed him in Part 1! But he’s kind of in the same boat as Copycat for me; if you’re playing a Highfather team, you’re hoping to face one specific kind of team the whole tournament (any Build that revolves around a big bruiser–the more points, the better) that you can basically screw over before the game begins. If you run into a balanced team or really any team with a solid secondary attacker, you’re probably gonna lose. That’s why I think Highfather and Copycat are losing strategies; it’s not that you’ll lose every game, but you have almost no shot to actually win the tournament (or even make a Top 4). And if you’re not playing to win, you’re playing to lose–Ricky Bobby taught us this!

"Bizarro am Meta this season!"

“Bizarro am Meta this season!”

–SLOSH039X Bizarro: Unfortunately, no, Bizarro is not Meta right now. And no, that’s not me saying the reverse of what I actually mean. Bizarro’s still got his un-ignorable Stop Click-y goodness Trait, but without access to Resources, Relics or Entities, he’s a bit more inconsistent in terms of the stats on his dial, and he can’t heal as easily. There’s also been an increase in the number of Meta-Worthy figures who can do damage to him twice in one turn (Speed Demon, Proxima Midnight, etc.).

Now, when Resources, Entities and everything else returns in the second half season, Bizarro will once again be Meta, but until then, he just isn’t going to be a consistent enough performer to structure a team around.

(Having said that, you WILL occasionally see 25 Point Bizarro included in some Builds as a Taxi/Tertiary Attacker. I never loved Bizarro at 25 Points simply because with only 1 Orrazib Token on his card, Bizarro can’t take advantage of his best power–that Traited, un-ignorable Stop Click! But at 25 Points, he’s kinda like a pull on a slot machine–if you roll him onto one of his best clicks, you can do some serious damage for very little Build cost.)

 

Modern Age Figures That Have So Far Been Ignored in the ROC:

 

Speed Demon

DP053A Speed Demon: So far, ROC results indicate that strong ranged-base pieces are at the center of the Meta right now. But Hypersonic Speed came back in a big way this year (more on that later), and as of yet seems really untapped! And of all the great speedsters WizKids released this year, Speed Demon is pound for pound the best of the lot! He’s placed in ROC Top 8’s before, and even in this format, I don’t see why he can’t be dominant again. As always, it’s his awesome Trait (SPEED CYCLONE UPLIFT: When Speed Demon moves, after actions resolve, choose an opposing character and roll a d6. If the result is less than the number of distinct squares that Speed Demon moved into or through that are adjacent to that character during the move, you may place that character within line of fire of its square and up to the result away in squares and deal that character half of the result in damage.) that lets him potentially deal damage twice in one turn (or up to three times a turn down dial!). The fact that his Trait can go off without having to make an attack roll is just awesome, and it’s a great way to deal with potentially problematic figs like Despotellis who have Defense Values that are really tough to reach.

Also, at 110 Points, he can be used as either a Primary Attacker or a Secondary Attacker, depending on which way you want to go with your build.

Captain Marvel Marvel 2

–007B Captain Marvel: So, this was kind of an omission from Part One, since he has shown up on multiple ROC teams, but we’ll talk about him here. Captain Marvel Prime is stupidly, ridiculously good. He was #1 on my GotG Top Ten Review, and he’s only gonna grow in popularity. His usefulness knows almost no bounds; he offers taxi services, Running Shot, 6 Range, Energy Explosion, Pen/Psy and Incapacitate, and if he hits with any of those attacks, the hit character CANNOT ATTACK during the next turn. He also has an 18 Defense with uncounterable Defend and Super Senses, and he adds +1 to the Defense of any non-Kree. Whew!! That’s a ton of stuff for only 82 Points!

His only drawback is his RELATIVELY short Range of 6 and his lack of Indomitable. That’s it. Try teaming him with AVX007 Black Panther and some other supporting folks to grant him Willpower to unleash his full potential!

Maxwell_Dillon_(Earth-2149)

–DP064 Electro: Zombie Chase Electro! Yay! In addition to being fun to play, Zombie Electro here has the potential to deal boatloads of damage. His attack isn’t necessarily consistently high enough to to be a Primary Attacker, but he’s damn dangerous as a secondary attacker. Try teaming him with Meta staples Super-Skrull and Headpool to get the most out of him. Either one will gives Virus tokens to any opposing character they hit, and once that happens, Electro can zap them from any square on the map as long as they’re within his Range–line of fire is no longer required! Also, Zombie Super-Skrull, Zombie Electro and Headpool is 298 Points, so they all fit together!

"I thought I was clear before, but, to reiterate... Y'all mother$@#%&!$ forgot about Dre!"

“I thought I was clear before, but, to reiterate… Y’all mother$@#%&!$ forgot about Dre!”

–IIM040 Shaman: Okay, I’ve been pitching this guy as a Secondary Attacker/Support piece for over a year now, but he is still REALLY good. And his “No Flights” ability can really screw over some Builds, especially on certain maps. We’ll have a Build featuring this guy, Iron Pharaoh and some NEW blood a little bit later!

"Oh man, look at those lines! Maybe coming to San Diego in character was a bad idea!"

“Oh man, look at those lines! Maybe coming to San Diego in character was a bad idea!”

–CATWS Captain America and Black Widow: Get this Duo some TK and Perplex and let them go to work. They have Traited Stealth and can see and move through Hindering themselves. Duo attack plus Precision Strike is nice. Sidestep + Improved Movement: Ignores Characters is also awesome! The best part about these two is that they only cost you 130 Points, which is really low for everything they offer. With the right supporting pieces, they can be straight deadly!

 

And What to Expect From The Flash:

 

Well, I don’t want to step on our Flash Top Ten Reviews coming later this month, but this is a really solid set, and there’s more than a few figures you’re going to have to know if you have hopes of competing in the ROC!

 

Turtle

–FL031 Turtle: I love this figure! His Trait is so flavorful, and I love that his name is Turtle and that he, y’know, helps your team “turtle.” He gives you a Stealthy Outwitter for 50 Points, but the best reason to play him is his Trait (Slowness as a Way of Life: Turtle can use plasticity. when another character moves at least 5 squares and actions resolve, give them an action token. if you can’t, deal them 1 penetrating damage.), which pairs absolutely PERFECTLY with that Iron Pharaoh/Shaman team I mentioned earlier:

Team Name: Slowness as a Way of Death!

Theme: N/A

Roster:

IIM051 Iron Pharaoh110 Points

IIM040 Shaman92

DP020 Weasel27

FI001 Thule Society Priest21

FL031 Turtle50

=300 (Exactly! Yay!)

How to Play: This works like any other Pharaoh team. If you win Map Roll, you want to choose Wundagore Mountain (from AvX) or any other map that is a bear to cross. Hole up in your Starting Area, send out your Falcon, stop anyone else from flying with Shaman and destroy any who would oppose you. And with Turtle’s Trait, the faster they try and get to you, the longer it will actually take.

You’ll have 2 Outwits (IP, Turtle), 1 Perplex (Shaman), Enhancement (Weasel) and the possibility of a Prob Control (Thule Society Priest on his last click). Weasel will also pump up Iron Pharaoh’s Attack by 1 and let him reroll if Iron Pharaoh misses by 1! When the enemy closes in, Shaman makes a decent Secondary Attacker. Alternatively, his Defense Special (GLACIAL WALL: Shaman can use Barrier and Energy Shield/Deflection. When he uses Barrier, the blocking terrain markers can’t be targeted with an attack by characters marked with one or more action tokens.) lets him pump out an improved Barrier. Thule Society Priest can also be used as a tie-up/annoyance piece, especially since he can copy Mystics from Shaman and deal an unavoidable damage to whichever opposing figure has to spend an action killing him.

Now, Flash has also seen the release of Jack Hawksmoor, an Authority character who has a Trait that deals 1 Penetrating Damage to any character still in a Starting Area during Turn 3 or later. To me, though, this is hardly a deterrent to playing a Pharaoh team. Moving Pharaoh (especially with Shaman as a Taxi) and the rest of the team just outside their own starting area in the first couple turns is child’s play, and sometimes it leads to even better positioning for “turtling” (depending on the Map). At the end of the day, all Jack Hawksmoor is really going to stop is Blind Al.

So there ya go! The Slowest Team Ever Devised!! And its main flaw–it’s not a Themed Team–doesn’t matter in the current ROC format because Themed Team rules are not in effect!

–Finally, keep an eye out for FL007 S.T.A.R. Labs Technician (possibly the best pure all around support piece in the game right now!); FL202 Flash (once he gets going, there’s almost no safe place on the map for your opponent!); FL053B Zoom (the Prime; he’s a beast who can use Blades/Claws/Fangs AND either Flurry OR Exploit Weakness WHILE HE’S USING HYPERSONIC SPEED! Yup! Another piece who can attack twice in a turn. AND he’s a Black Lantern!); and FL050 Flash (aka Kingdom Come Flash; once he gets some Speed Force tokens going, he can absolutely END even some of the hardiest figures IN ONE TURN!).

Kingdom Come Flash's KO rate when using his "Who Would Dare Be A Criminal in this City?" special Attack Power.

Kingdom Come Flash’s KO rate when using his “Who Would Dare Be A Criminal in this City?” special Attack Power.

For more specifics on exactly why you need to be ready for these pieces and more, check out our Flash Top Ten Review coming later this month!

Until then, stay safe, and watch where you draw those lines of fire!

 

 

 

Let’s Be Lanterns Again! For One Shall Surely Fall!! (Or Let’s Build an Army For Each Lantern Corps–Part 3 of 3!!)

War of Light Part 3!

And now we’ve reached the final four Corps!

For the uninitiated, Ninwashui and I are creating competitive Builds for each Lantern Corps–let’s recap the rules:

1. Each Build has to be a Theme Team (although that Theme doesn’t necessarily have to be for the corresponding Corps keyword) that features a character who isn’t known for being a member of the featured color (Red Lantern Superboy Prime, or Hal Jordan Parallax, for example; or someone who’s never been a Lantern of any color in the comics–like a Marvel character!);

2. For each color, each member of a team has to either start with the corresponding Corps keyword, or they must be able to get it during the game.

There are several ways to do this: use a character from War of Light who’s been made in a color different from the norm (Parallax Hal or Kyle Rayner, Orange Lantern Hal or Blue Lantern Hal, White Lantern Kyle Rayner, Red Lantern Guy Gardner, and so on and so forth); use an Entity to bring any other character in the game into that Entity’s color; or just make a general Theme Team and use the Lantern Power Battery to distribute rings during the game and give each member of a team that color’s keyword (along with some kickass powers!).

If you missed it, we featured the Sinestro Corps, Indigo Tribe and Orange Lantern Corps in Part 1!

The Blue Lantern Corps and Red Lantern Corps were covered in Part 2!

Also, in a shocking twist at the end of Part 2, Ninwashui revealed that he’s actually been a scheming, possibly drunk raccoon the whole time he’s been writing for this site!! (Y’know… it’s been a weird month.)

And now that everyone’s caught up, HypeFox and Ninwashui will be facing off one more time–AND ONE SHALL SURELY FALL!

HypeFox and Ninwashui each have a pair of Builds they think is better than the other’s–and you can be a judge simply by posting who you think came up with the better Builds in the Comments section below!

Up first is HypeFox with… The Green Lantern Corps!!

 

"I have the power to overcome great fear. And I have a flying, invulnerable Falcon automaton that sharts on any who would oppose me!"

“I may or may not have the power to overcome great fear, but I definitely have a flying, invulnerable Falcon automaton that sharts on any who would oppose me.”

GREEN LANTERN CORPS (HypeFox Build)

Team Name:Threat Level Green

ThemeMystical

Characters Not Normally Associated With the Green Lantern Corps: Iron Pharaoh (who, when you think about it, isn’t really even associated with the Marvel Universe–he was just on ONE alternate cover at some point); Shaman; Lockheed; and Thule Society Priest (in other words, the whole team!)

Roster:

IIM051 Iron Pharaoh – 110 Points

IIM040 Shaman – 92

w/ ATA005 Alpha Flight4

FI001 Thule Society Priest21

WXM080 Lockheed16

WOLR100 Power Battery (Green Lantern Corps)2

WOLR300 Green Lantern Ring8

WOLR200 Shield (Green)8

WOLR200.01 Net (Green)8

WOLR200.04 Wall (Green)10

WOLR200.05 Crossbow (Green)10

WOLR200.09 Nurse (Green)10

=299 (It took all my Willpower not to make this an even 300 Point team… )

 

How It Plays: This is a version of the Iron Pharaoh/Shaman stall, seek & destroy team that I’m always pitching in one form or another–this time with a Green twist!! Firstly, while extremely effective in their own right, none of these characters have Willpower–that’s where the Green Ring comes in! Every time a Green Construct is given to a member of this team, in addition to the Construct’s effects, that member gains access to Willpower! ANNNNNNDD they then have 50% chance to ignore opposing Outwit and Perplex!

50% Of the Time

Iron Pharaoh plus the RCE-granting Crossbow equals a ton of damage dealing that can see through just about anything. Shaman grounds all characters with the Wing Symbol and offers Perplex and Barrier top dial–all of which should help in delaying the opposition from getting to you! Lockheed can be a pest, but his main purpose is providing another tie-up piece who can Energy Explode if your opponent bunches up his figures, as well as being another Mystical body on your side at the beginning of the game for Map Roll (Hint: If you win Map Roll, choose Wundagore Mountain or the weird SLoSH Apokolips map that has like 50 Elevated areas so that it’ll be nigh impossible for your opponent to get to the Pharaoh without getting rocked). Thule Society Priest is kind of there for the same reason as Lockheed, but pushing him to get to a Prob Control is not a terrible idea. Still, most of your damage is going to come from Iron Pharaoh and Shaman–but that should be more than enough!

 

Condescending Ninwashui

CONDESCENDING NINWASHUI Chirps: “Oh, wow, you shouldn’t have gone to all that trouble to innovate such a bold Build. I mean, it must have taken just a metric poop-ton of brainpower for you to come up with a team that you’ve pitched about 7 times before. Oh, well done, sir. Bravo! Ooooo, but you know who would really like this team?

 

Quizzical HypeFox

QUIZZICAL HYPEFOX Ponders: “Uhhhh... ”

 

Ninwashui Dwight Schrute

POMPOUS NINWASHUI Retorts: “No one. But for a team that absolutely EVERYONE will just LOVE, look no further than the next entry!”

 

Hellfire Club

STAR SAPPHIRES (Ninwashui Build)

Team Name: As Long As Our Love (And My Head) Survives

Theme:

Characters Not Normally Associated With the Star Sapphires: The Hellfire Club’s Black King and White King

Roster:

WXM035 Black King – 165 Points

WXM020 White King – 107

WOLR106 Power Battery (Star Sapphires)2

WOLR306 Star Sapphire Ring8

WOLR206.08 Scissors (Violet) – 8

WOLR206.09 Nurse (Violet)10

=300 (Oh, look, HypeFox, no wasted points! It’s almost like one of us knows what they’re doing!)

 

How It Plays: This one is pretty basic. Take two guys who are basically unkillable, give them the Mystics TA and Shape Change (so that your opponent is only hurting himself when he tries to hurt you) and a way to heal the Black King (the Nurse Construct), and watch as your fiendish society takes over the world. Black King is a beast who only gets more powerful the more damage he takes (and remember, while he takes damage, your opponent is taking that Mystics unavoidable damage!), and–at 11 Clicks long–he can take a LOT of punishment. Meanwhile, White King will Charge around the map with his Scissors-granted Exploit Weakness and native Super Strength. Also, his Leadership works on Black King! Oh, and as long as Black King is on the map, White King can’t truly die. Which means that he’ll keep coming back over and over–and your opponent will have to grind through those Mystic clicks over and over. A perfect recipe for pain!

 

Ambivalent Giraffe

AMBIVALENT GIRAFFE HYPEFOX Responds: “It’s also a perfect recipe for boredom! Really?! Two characters, one of whom is meant to die over and over and the other who has to be hit A TON before you get to his super clicks? This might be an effective team, but I don’t think it’d be a fun one. Not as fun as, say, bringing the Sinister Syndicate into the Black Lantern Corps…

 

"Maxwell Dillon of Earth, you have the power to kill a ton of $#!t. Welcome to the Black Lantern Corps!"

“Maxwell Dillon of Earth, you have the power to kill a ton of $#!t. Welcome to the Black Lantern Corps!”

BLACK LANTERN CORPS (HypeFox Build)

Team Name: What’s Black and White and Dead All Over?

Theme: Sinister Syndicate

Characters Not Normally Associated With the Black Lantern Corps:

Roster:

DP064 Electro – 90 Points

w/ ATA091 Sinister Twelve – 4

ASM019 Vulture – 61

w/ ATA091 Sinister Twelve – 4

ASM030 Lizard – 88

w/ ATA091 Sinister Twelve – 4

DOFPH003 Human Protester – 10

FIB008 Photographer – 3

WOLR108 Power Battery (Black Lantern Corps)2

WOLR308 Black Lantern Ring – 6

WOLR208.01 Net (Black)8

WOLR208.03 Mallet (Black) – 4

WOLR208.07 Catapult (Black)10

WOLR208.14 Sniper Rifle (Black)6

=300 (See Ninwashui? I can make 300 point teams too. I just don’t need to crow about it at the top of my lungs. No, like my team, I prefer to wait quietly in the shadows, silent but deadly…)

 

Smiling Raccoon Ninwashui

GIGGLING RACCOON NINWASHUI Points Out: “Yup! I’ve often described things you’ve created as silent but deadly.”

 

How It Plays: I hate you. Anyway, the Black Lantern Ring gives Steal Energy (and heals any bearers 1 Click when an opposing fig is KO’d) and the Black Battery will sometimes increase that Steal Energy Healing by 1. All of which means that Zombie Electro, if he gets even one hit in, will probably be around forever. Vulture can transport both Electro and Lizard at the same time, and if you give the Catapult to the Human Protester or (better yet) the Photographer, they can TK any of your characters to where they need to be.

Lizard will get the Mallet, which gives him BOTH Quake and Steal Energy–a combo we know from the good ol’ days of Lizard plus Angrir’s Hammer that works extremely efficiently. Zombie Electro gets the Sniper Rifle, and Vulture gets the Net to use as he sees fit–hopefully, he’ll deploy it after a Charge in which he did B/C/F or Exploit Weakness damage to keep any other targets in place while Electro readies a Pen/Psy/EE blast, which we’ve talked about at length before (it’s still pretty sick).

And don’t overlook Human Protester. While he and Photographer were mostly included on this force to goose the activation of the Sinister Twelve ATA, he can do decent damage in his own right against adjacent opposing figures. And if your opponent is playing mutants, he actually kind of hoses those teams a lil’.

But this team really digs into the Black Lantern theme aspect with Electro. KO’ing dudes and then adding them to your force is soooooo Black Lantern Corps, right? Right?

 

Ninwashui Raccoon Five Fingers

FIVE-FINGER-DEATHPUNCHING NINWASHUI Says: “I like that you’ve given me five figures to kill with any of the epic Builds that I’ve come up with. Giving TK to a POG isn’t a bad idea, and Electro is a hot mess of damage dealing. This isn’t a terrible Build. But just as Death must always give way to Life, your crappy Black Lantern Corps Build must give way to my Awesomesauce White Lantern Corps Build. Coming up NEXT!”

 

White Lantern Iron Man

WHITE LANTERN CORPS (Ninwashui Build)

Team Name: If You Ain’t White, You Ain’t Right (Please Note that this is a Modern Family reference and not a bold new racist direction for Critical Missives) !!

Theme: S.H.I.E.L.D.

Characters Not Normally Associated With the Black Lantern Corps: Iron Man and the Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.!!

Roster:

IIM001AE Iron Man – 150 Points

CATWS005 S.H.I.E.L.D. Agent – 36

CATWS005 S.H.I.E.L.D. Agent – 36

CATWS005 S.H.I.E.L.D. Agent – 36

WOLR101 Power Battery (White Lantern Corps)2

WOLR301 White Lantern Ring6

WOLR201.01 Net (White)8

WOLR201.04 Wall (White) – 10

WOLR201.05 Crossbow (White)10

WOLR201.14 Sniper Rifle (White)6

=300 (Nailed it again!!)

 

How It Plays: Basically, this is the team that won’t die. Once per game, each character gets a stop click. You can also give any White Construct holder a Power Action and heal everyone in a six-square radius for 1 Click. In the meantime, Iron Man can Mastermind damage to any adjacent S.H.I.E.L.D. Agent (who again, can’t be killed from one shot). Meanwhile, Iron Man can shoot, Perplex AND Outwit  through both Blocking and Hindering Terrain (which means Map Choice can be a HUGE advantage for this squad). Oh, and did I mention they all have the S.H.I.E.L.D. TA? So like Spinal Tap’s amps, Iron Man’s Range goes to 11. And if they manage to base IM, all those Agents also have Empower. Basically, Iron Man is either punching or shooting for a ton of damage every turn while the Agents make pests of themselves by either healing, creating Blocking Terrain, Hindering Terrain that must be broken away from, or even sniping for 2 Damage from 10 Squares away.

In short, this team will outlast any of the pathetic Builds HypeFox has inflicted upon us these last few weeks.

 

12th Doctor HypeFox

UNAMUSED HYPEFOX Notes: “Oh, you really think so? Then how about a little wager? We let the people decide. Because they’re never small to me. And the loser gives a Guardians of the Galaxy pack to the winner’s favorite charity. Or even to the winner. Actually, that makes more sense.

 

Ninwashui Mean Face

MEAN FACE NINWASHUI Growls: “You, sir, are on! Heh.”

 

12th Doctor 2 HypeFox

CONFIDENT HYPEFOX Wonders: “What’s so funny? You’re about to lose!

 

RAccoon Ninwashui smiles

GRINNING NINWASHUI Shouts: “You’d like to think so, wouldn’t you? But you fell victim to one of the classic blunders–the most famous of which is “never get involved in a flame war online about comic-book movies“–but only slightly less well-known is this: “Never go in against a Raccoon when Clix are on the line“! Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha! Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha! Ha ha ha…

… Um… I mean, are we just sticking around for the poll to go up, or–whoops! There we go.