Card games, as far as we are concerned, have always had an important charm, especially if they are LCG. Fantasy Flight Games, has managed to snatch an important partnership with The Marvel movies to produce a deep and really interesting cooperative: Marvel Champions. La Fantasy Flight Games (later FFG) is not new to card game production, (Games of Thrones) and title creation LCG (Living Card Game) successful, for this the combination with the The Marvel movies it can only bear the hoped-for results. Today we analyze Marvel Champions, a cooperative in which players will take on the role of their favorite superheroes, facing different scenarios with the aim of foiling the evil plans of the most dangerous villains of all time.
Before illustrating the dynamics of the title, we want to explain, for the uninitiated, what i Living Card Game o LCG. This type of card games does not involve the compulsive purchase of a disproportionate amount of randomly formulated packages, but you buy basic sets and expansions with an already predetermined content of cards. This possibility allows all players to always compete on equal terms and without spending infinite amounts of money, reducing the mania and frustration of having to search for all the cards you need. Read in this way it might seem that the possibilities of deck building are limited, but actually it is not so, because each player with equal cards, will be able to build their own deck, looking for effective combinations and synergies suitable for their type of game.
Fortunately FFG is very experienced in this field, and thanks to the partnership with The Marvel movies has managed to create a dynamic title, at the same time complicated, and obviously with materials and illustrations of the highest level. Marvel Champions is a structured game that manages to involve each player in different scenarios and various levels of difficulty, being able to choose to rely on ready-made and preset decks or give vent to their imagination, building custom decks.
The story of the game focuses on foiling the evil plans of Marvel villains - such as Ultro, Klaw and Rhino - and each player (1 to 4) will choose a main hero from those proposed in the basic set and build (or use the preset deck ) a deck for dealing with threats. The starting heroes that we will have available are Iron Man, Captain Marvel, Spider-Man, Black Panther and She-Hulk. Each of these characters has a well thought-out card with different characteristics and different abilities to use at will in the course of the games. In each scenario we will have a plot with a super villain to deal with, based on this, players will be able to choose a super hero to play alternating with the alter ego form, both with different abilities to be exploited as needed during the game.
As mentioned, each hero has a specific card consisting of a hero side and an alter-ego side, which affects the size of your hand, the cards you can play, and how enemies will act. A hero's deck can consist of 15 unique cards, some necessarily coming from a specific set (Aggression, Justice, Leadership or Protection) and some cards from the basic set. In the regulation there are suggestions on how to create each hero's deck, but once each player becomes familiar with the title, they can choose any card from a set of aspects and any basic card as long as it doesn't exceed 40-50 cards. Each hero also has a Obligation card that goes into the villain's encounter deck and a set of nemesis cards that may enter the game at some point if a card is drawn from the encounter deck.
Each villain will have its own mode of advancement, which will put pressure on the players by gradually increasing the threat tokens on the plot, changing shape and making the villain become more and more fearsome and complicated to contain. This is a very well structured dynamic because players will have to think and reason quickly to implement a winning and effective strategy.
To face the rise of villains, superheroes will be gifted with innate abilities and features tailored to each beloved character. The game will flow in the various phases quite easily, the players will be able to face and fight the enemy only when they wear the role of the superhero, while the alter-ego part will leave room for the enemy advance. Players who take on civilian clothes will not oppose the advance of the enemy's secret plan, but will be able to take actions to improve the hero's equipment. It will therefore be an important part to manage the two forms very carefully, so as not to arrive late for the appointment to save the world.
During their turn, each player will be able to field cards of various types, activating powers or abilities to progress in the plot. However, each card will have a cost (written top left), which will be paid by discarding other cards from your hand. It goes without saying that playing a card with a high impact will soon lead us to empty our hand and leave us open (play your game). The player in each turn will also be able to access the ability of the hero or his alter ego, perform actions of the opposing cards, try to make the most of the event cards, and weaken the opponent and his gang inflicting damage.
All hero cards are made up of three main stats: Intelligence, attack and defense. Obviously, each character in the game will have different characteristics, each designed for the character that distinguishes the hero. Based on these characteristics, some heroes will be more likely to tank opponents damage, others to thin enemy lines and those with more intelligence can slow down the progress of the enemy plot by removing threats.
Once the active player's turn is over, we will move on to the villain's turn, which can be summarized in three simple steps: Plot, Attack and Study. In the Plot phase, the rascal on duty adds threats to the plot card. In the Attack phase it inflicts a direct attack on each player, while in the last phase it forces you to reveal an encounter card to all players. With this last move, they can get to the enemies, upgrades, other henchmen negative effects for the players that slow down their progress or can "summon" the nemesis of superheroes.
The title of Fantasy Flight Games it's really fun, not just because we can "play" our superheroes The Marvel movies favorites in a board game, but why thanks to three difficulty levels guarantees a high degree of attention and replayability of the three scenarios of the base set. Marvel Champions it is a truly complete game, which does everything it needs to do in an excellent way: structured, with a high degree of customization, dynamic, fun and then there are the Marvel heroes.
The graphic part plays a notable role, since each card has been made taking the style of the famous comic strips, with canonical illustrations by the most famous cartoonists of all time. As if that were not enough, the game can also be purchased by those who do not particularly love the part of the deck building, since with each expansion we find pre-built decks that can be used safely that do not harm the fun, always guaranteeing a high degree of competition. Among the certainly "positive" features it should be remembered that being an LCG, by purchasing all the expansions you will always have everything - absolutely everything - what you need in one fell swoop.
We look forward to shopping and having fun with upcoming expansions Marvel Champions: Captain America and Ms. Marvel hero packs, and the “Green Goblin” and “Wrecking Crew” scenarios.