Welcome back to another episode of 10 Minute Marvel, the Marvel podcast that gets you news and a topic fast. In today’s 10 Minute Marvel we look at a She-Hulk rumor and a “spoiler” for WandaVision. I put spoiler in quotes because it seems to …
There’s so much news to talk about this week as the Disney Investor meeting happened, and we have a lot of teasers and information on new Marvel projects coming out. Plus there were announcements that came out before and after, to checkout this slightly long …
There’s a bunch of news from maybe not a casting, to filming starting, to a potential spoiler for [redacted]. Plus I talk about where you can jump into comics as Marvel Unlimited moves to a 3 month delay as from when they are released in comic book stores as compared to what used to be a 6 month delay for the digital service.
I hope that you are enjoying the podcast, all of you listeners have already made this the most listened to month so far, which is amazing. Thank you so much. If you are enjoying the podcast, please consider subscribing and leaving a rating and review. Those help more people find the podcast and join into the 10 Minute Marvel community.
And if you want to get a hold of the podcast, talk about the potential spoiler, or have suggestions for comics for me to checkout, you can leave a comment below. Or you can tweet them to me, @TheScando or by using #10MinMarvel.
Probably should have done this list sooner with people needing to shelter in place during Covid-19 pandemic, but better late than never. I’m talking about games that work well with 2 players versus 2 player only games because I’m not sure that I’ve sat down …
Yes, I did just do a Board Game Battle and a Beyond the Box Cover for Marvel Champions, but I’ve had a chance to play it a handful of times now, with a few different heroes and villains, solo and multiplayer, so I think that it’s time to come back to Marvel Champions and write up my full thoughts and review of it. But, if you’ve checked out the Board Game Battle, you’ll already have some idea.
Marvel Champions is a cooperative superhero game where you play as a superhero who is trying to thwart the plans of a villain and defeat them. On the heroes turn, you can play cards that might be an ally or give you an additional ability or allow you to thwart the villains scheme or attack the villain. But these cards cost resources, and to get the resources to play these cards, you need to discard cards, so while you might want to play all the cards in your hand because they do something good, you are limited in number to how many you can play because they are going to cost, and the better cards cost more. Then the villain goes, and depending on if you are in the alter-ego side of the superhero side of the character card, they will either work on their scheme or they’ll attack you. Plus, then you need to encounter a card, it might be a henchmen that you need to take care of, otherwise they’ll be pinging you for damage, or it could be treachery card where it causes some other action to happen, like scheming or attacking again. This goes on until either the villain has completed their plan or the hero has taken out the villain. If the superhero takes out the villain, the heroes win, but each villain has two versions that you have to face off against, so taking them down once isn’t enough.
This game does some really interesting things. First, let me say that one of the big things about the game is that it’s a living card game. That means that there are expansions coming out. In the base game, you have plenty to play with Ultron and Rhino as villains and the likes of Iron Man, Captain Marvel, Black Panther, She-Hulk, and Spider-Man as villains. But the expansions give you new characters or villains to face off against. You can get Green Goblin so that you have to worry about him and his glider in a fight, and you can get Captain America to face off against him. There are other heroes like Ms Marvel, Black Widow, Thor, Doctor Strange, and Hulk that have been announced or are out. All these expansions, and a Red Skull campaign expansion coming sometime this summer, can make the game more expensive, but also you don’t need them all, if you don’t care about Hulk and Ms Marvel, don’t pick them up, and you can still have a great game with lots of fun things in it. And while the expansions are pretty consistently coming out, they aren’t that expensive, which is nice.
But let’s talk about some of the other cool things, first there is the alter-ego and superhero piece. It’s really clever and gives it a great comic book feel, in my opinion. In the comics (I’m going to mainly be using Spider-Man as an example), it’s common for Spider-Man to get knocked around, Peter Parker then needs to rest and recover, which he can, because people don’t know that Peter Parker is Spider-Man, but the villain, thinking that they’ve defeated Spider-Man will scheme and plot and get closer to their goal, when Spider-Man then shows up again to stop them. The flipping between sides, alter-ego and superhero, is very much that feeling. Each hero has things that they can do when they are on their alter-ego side and their superhero side that are different as well. For example, Captain America, when he’s in alter-ego form, he can recruit allies easier, but when he’s on the Captain America side, he can un-exhaust so that he can do more actions. So it make sense, Steve Rogers/Captain America is the leader of the Avengers often, so he can go out and recruit a hero, and he also never gets knocked down and out of a fight, so he’s always ready to attack and then un-exhaust and do it again, as he says…
And each hero has their own things like that, which fits their character and makes them unique from the rest of the heroes.
Another cool thing is that the heroes have different aspects to them, and you can change this up. So maybe you want Spider-Man to be more protection cards, you can give him more defensive cards in his deck. That way he’ll be able to stay in Spider-Man form longer and not have to flip back and forth between the two as much. Or maybe you want him to be aggressive you can change out his aspect to that, or Justice or Leadership. That’s going to give you another way to change up things. I played Captain America with a protection cards, and I was able to stay in the superhero side of things for all but one turn because I was taking damage so slowly. But if you wanted to, you could make Cap very aggressive and he’d deal out a lot of damage fast, or leadership makes thematic sense because he often leads the avengers. So you can mess around with deck building that way to create what type of team you want to play with.
Are there any downsides to the game? It takes a few minutes to set-up and if you aren’t familiar with deck building you might just be stuck with the decks that they recommend or you might have some weird deck builds that happen. But you can learn how to do better deck building. I think that the one downside right now is that it is hard to find the expansions, they aren’t printing enough and it takes some time to get a reprint done, and with COVID-19 as well, that could delay the reprints as well. Right now I have the Wrecking Crew villain expansion and Thor character expansion, but those are basically sold out as well. But, with that said, those packs will show up again, and there is enough in the base box that it’s worth it to just grab that and play and learn with those characters.
Now, I’ve done some comparisons already, and that’s in the Board Game Battle with Marvel Legendary, so is there room for both on your shelf, I think if you like Legendary, you will probably will find that this is different enough, and vice-a-versa. But I also want to bring up the other living card games that Fantasy Flight has put out, there is Lord of the Rings, Game of Thrones, and Arkham Horror. So how does this compare to the one that I’ve played, Arkham Horror? I think that it’s close between the two, if you go back to my deck building/construction article yesterday for Top 10 in that genre, you can see that Marvel Champions is the spot above, however, it’s close. I like the story driven nature of Arkham Horror: The Card Game, and that’s something that I do miss with Marvel Champions, but that is also coming. I think that I just like the superhero theme a little bit better and being able to pull it out for one game. But because one, right now, is a single game and the other is a campaign, I think that there’s room for both on shelves.
Overall, clearly I like this game. I think that it plays well at both 1 and 2 players and offers unique challenges both ways. There is a lot of really interesting things going on in the game, and it feels like a comic book. If you’re at all interested, I’d definitely recommend checking it out. But, with that said, know that the cost could add up over time if you’re a Marvel fanboy/fangirl, like I am. Because I’ll want to get most of it over time. I also think that this can work for a more casual player to pick up and learn. Fantasy Flight does a good job with their rule book, and the game is pretty simple, but still offers good challenges, so this a game that people interested in it will probably be able to understand easily.
Overall Grade: A
Gamer Grade: A
Casual Grade: A-
Share questions, ideas for articles, or comments with us!
There’s some movie and Disney+ rumors on characters who might be showing up in other shows. Plus, I talk about a new board game that I found, Marvel Champions, and if you’re a board game fan, is this a good Marvel and superhero experience? Any …
These two games are going to get compared to each other a lot, so it’s time to duke it out and see who the winner is. Or maybe there will be room for both of them in your collection, but for Board Game Battles, there …
I very much love Marvel, clearly, with doing the 10 Minute Marvel podcast. But I’ve held off on getting Marvel Champions for a little while, mainly because a Living Card Game (LCG) like it is, can end up costing a lot. And because, unlike Arkham Horror LCG, it wasn’t story driven, it’s more just facing off against a single bad guy. And the story was one part that I really have loved about Arkham Horror LCG. But, then, I was sucked in when they announced that Doctor Strange was going to be a character pack being released, and remembering that they are going to do story packs or campaign packs coming up here.
Like I said, Marvel Champions is Living Card Game. It’s something that Fantasy Flight Games has made into a thing, basically, it’s a card game where you can buy expansion packs for the game that progress the story, give you more content, or add in whatever it might be as you continue to play through everything. Marvel Champions is no different. The base game comes with five different heroes and couple of villains which would be enough to keep you going for a long time. However, they are releasing character packs and villain packs, so if you wanted to face off against the Green Goblin, you can buy a pack for that, or maybe you want to add Ms Marvel and Captain America to your team of characters you can play, that’s another two packs that you can add. But the nice thing, unless your a completionist, you don’t need everything or anything more than the base game to play a fun game. There are plenty of combinations, deck set-ups, and villains to keep an interesting game going for a long time.
In terms of game play, I would say that it reminds me a fair amount of Arkham Horror LCG, which it was built upon, just without as much story. Instead of there being a mythos phase, there is a villain phase, and the villain is scheming and putting out additional schemes and minions into play. These LCG games are deck construction games, though, thus far, I have only played with the premade Spider-Man deck against Rhino. On your turn you’re playing down hero cards that might be putting something like the Avengers Mansion into play or doing a crazy web flip kick into Rhino to do him damage, but to do these things, you need to pay for them. There are resources to pay for the cards on the cards themselves, so you have to decide, do you want to play a card for resources or put it into play. It can be tough, because all of the cards are useful in the right situation. After that, and attacking or thwarting the villains schemes, the villain activates and schemes. Then the villain does one of two things, they either scheme some more, or they attack you. This is determined by one of the coolest mechanics in the game (I’ll talk about that in a second). But you win if you can defeat the villain before the villain defeats your hero or completes their scheme.
So, how does the villain determine if they are going to attack you or if they are going to scheme. That depends on if you are the superhero, Spider-Man in this example, or their alter-ego, Peter Parker. Rhino doesn’t know that Peter Parker is Spider-Man, so he’s going to scheme assuming that he has previously dealt with Spider-Man, or maybe that Spider-Man is off somewhere else. But then you can flip into Spider-Man form and come in with a swinging web kick out of nowhere. Flipping between the two sides is a balancing act. Sometimes Rhino will have injured you too much so that you need to flip back to Peter Parker side to heal up, while other times Rhino might be so close to getting the scheme completed that you need to flip to Peter Parker side until you can deal with that threat on the scheme. The trick is can you balance it before one of the two loss conditions is triggered.
I also like how expandable the game is, I just got done saying that you don’t need to expand it, but it is an option. If you want to get a certain hero you can, they’ve come out with or announced, Captain America, Ms Marvel, Thor, Doctor Strange, Hulk, and Black Widow. So it’s a wide variety of characters you can play, and while I’ve only played as Spider-Man, I’ve heard that the characters do feel different. For example Iron Man, from the base box, has to build his armor up to get stronger. Black Panther has a lot of gadgets as well that he can use. Captain Marvel is more about punching. I’m sure that the other character packs will feel unique as well. But, I don’t feel the need to get all the packs. I’m not sure that I’ll get Hulk or Black Widow because I don’t know how much I’d play with them, but Doctor Strange and Thor, I’d probably play with a lot. Or Captain America, I might not play with him much, but that’s who my wife would probably pick to play as. So you can tailor it to your group and the same with villains, you can choose which ones you want to fight. This is also a downside for some as there can be a FOMO with the game since you might want to have everything for it.
Thus far, I’ve been enjoying the game a lot. I think it gives you a lot of interesting choices as you try and push your way through and take down the villain. I’ve only played Rhino vs Spider-Man, and even in two games, which I lost both, it seems like it can play differently, and it’s definitely a challenge. I like how I can push for attacking or then lay back and play a bit more defense if I need. I can see how building out and tweaking your own deck for the play style and hero you want against a certain villain would be a lot of fun to do, but that’s down the line for me. It’s definitely a game I can see getting more for, especially Doctor Strange. I was likely to like something Marvel no matter what, though I’m not a big fan of Marvel Legendary, so if I were to play a Marvel card game, Marvel Champions is the one for me.
Share questions, ideas for articles, or comments with us!