Geeking Out – Mid-Month Marvels for Jan 2023
I’m a bit late with the mid-month Marvels – New Year has thrown me a bit – but here we are again with our thoughts on Mojomania, Storm and Wolverine for Marvel Champions, plus a look at what’s coming (and what’s been teased) for Marvel Crisis Protocol.
Big thanks as always to Asmodee UK for providing us with the product to review and giveaway!
MARVEL CHAMPIONS – MOJOMANIA
Mojomania (RRP £21.99) is the first in a new kind of Marvel Champions scenario pack, where rather than just one scenario with extra modular you get a mini-campaign.
Essentially, by releasing alongside two more hero packs (Storm and Wolverine) it works out as a full release wave, but makes it much more manageable on the wallet (and storage, frankly – it’s not like I’ve got my own pocket dimension to put stuff in…) With this in mind, we tried it with the two heroes from Mutant Genesis (reviewed HERE) Shadowcat and Colossus, as many folk will look to this as a logical next purchase from that boxset.
Mojo, for the uninitiated, is Marvel’s demented, ratings-obsessed, inter-dimensional TV executive / robotic scorpion (no, really). The campaign has you racing through various twisted takes on genres – so, Horror adds in Lovecraftian minion cultists and beasties, Sitcom (Mojo in the Middle) is all about awkward Obligations interfering, Fantasy (A Game of Mojo) is just generally deadlier, and so on. It’s a fresh take and surprisingly funny, mixing up the game for experienced players but still mechanically straightforward for novices.
The first scenario is a live, televised, fight between you, the players, and MaGog, in a ratings battle to end all ratings battles! As both sides ratings go up or down, the crowd cheer or boo accordingly, making your chance of victory constantly change. It’s a great way of mixing up the regular victory conditions of the game and really helps scenario feel fresh and unusual – especially as you’re thrown into one of Mojo’s genres at the same time. As if that’s not enough, we have the absolutely glorious addition of fan-fave Longshot to the game as an ENCOUNTER card (so, he’s in the Villain deck, not the players) which is both mechanically and fluffily genius. It evokes that moment of turning a page in a comic and not knowing what’s coming next, feeling the anticipation alongside the Heroes – only to breathe a sigh of relief for it to be an unexpected ally. He’s a generic modular, and I can see him being in literally every game of Champions we play from now on.
As usual, for experienced players, we recommend using Standard II (from The Hood scenario pack) if you want a more satisfying challenge. Whilst Colossus and Shadowcat continue to be very potent and made fairly short work of MaGog, he wasn’t a pushover either, and the genre Cultists summoning a Kraken in the middle of the match may have driven up ratings but was certainly a nuisance – though not as much of a freakin’ Dragon coming on during A Game of Mojo and then channel hopping Mojo in the Middle and to The One With The Break-Up. Yup, for Season 2 you have to race through genres, trying to track down Spiral – she can’t be killed, but can be trapped and convinced to help you.
Again, it’s a really satisfying twist on the regular Champions mechanics, as you still have to watch for the “villain” scheming out (she escapes the Mojoverse, leaving you behind) whilst navigating Mojo’s maze of genres. It was glorious when defeating the Dragon got me Lockheed though – just, again, a perfect comic-panel moment. This is Champions at its best – this is up there with Kang the Conqueror (arguably the best scenario pack to date) for evoking the comic medium in LCG form. And as the for the season finale? Well, #spoileralert but you’re taking on Mojo and the Wheel of Genres – no, I’ve already said too much! You’ll just have to tune in yourself and find out. Suffice to say, it’s a proper nailbiter. Genuine character death and everything…
MCP – RHINO STAMPEDE
There’s some great new reveals and previews for MCP, including a whole lot of 4-cost characters – starting with the Rampaging Rhino!
Cracking sculpt, straight out of the gate: I’m particularly loving the move towards base overlays that we’ve been getting lately. Now with a medium base, his S move doesn’t sound great, especially in a 4-cost character, but for 3 power he gets a M move that ignores intervening terrain of S2 or less and gets bonus damage if followed up by his basic (which also gives him a R1 move) – plus, if he takes damage, he gains power AND gets to move S. This leaves your opponent with a quandary: attack him and let him move towards you, or ignore him, and let him build up momentum.
He’s a potent nuisance, and whilst high movement teams – like, say, oh, I don’t know, WEB WARRIORS – should run rings around him, lower mobility teams will find him harder work. I’m very torn, I was hoping for a spider-squasher but he’s more of giant-killer. It’ll be interesting to see whether he finds a place in the rosters.
MCP – KISS OF THE SPIDER-WOMAN
I’m a big fan of Jessica Drew – she’s also probably my favourite hero in Marvel Champions – and I’m delighted that she does everything I’d want her to in MCP also. L movement, with Wallcrawler AND a R2 glide for 2 power? Oh, and Stealth? Fab, perfect in whatever Team you put her in (#spoileralert – Hail Hydra). Her ability to increase VPs if within R2 of a Dazed enemy is just brilliant, rerolls from martial artist… I could go on gushing, but I shan’t.
In essence, she’s everything I want from a 4-cost character… Take note, Rhino.
FRIENDLY OUTERSPACE VENOM-MAN
Then again, Agent Venom is pretty impressive too. First of all, that sculpt is just magnificent: dynamic and symbiotic. He is a serious damage machine and runs off relatively little power, which is interesting.
The symbiote tentacles being a 4 cost attack is hefty but Beam 3 more than makes up for that (as well as being a great, fluffy interpretation of Beam). My only worry is he’s maybe a wee bit slow, though the symbiote swing should balance that out. Not sure that he’ll see much Web-Warrior play but he’s an excellent (and much needed) addition to the Guardians of the Galaxy as well as an impressive boost to SHIELD also.
RISE OF THE GODHUNTER
Anyone else gutted we didn’t get Beta-Ray Bill in ‘Love and Thunder’? Or did we just chalk that up to another of the raft of disappointment? Well, either away, the Mighty Korbinite is here now to flesh out cosmic factions all over.
There’s so much to love here. He’s a hard counter to Flight teams (I’m having flashbacks to BMG roof-rats with his Summon the Storm power, whilst his Godhunter is simply fantastic for dealing with the likes of Sentinels, Juggernaut – any of the big boys (or girls). I’ve seen criticism of him as being too Meta… but I think he’s just versatile. I’ve got a lot of time for the thought that’s gone into the design of Bill and I’m all for it.
So, a mighty impressive batch in the offing for MCP – and that’s not even counting the fact that we’ve had Psylocke and Emma Frost revealed as part of the next wave!
It’s a good time to be geek – did I mention that already?
Next time, we reveal the winner of our latest Geeky Giveaway and get stuck into the rival mob with a look at Knight Model’s Batman: Escape from Arkham, plus some more exciting Marvel news that I just can’t quite share yet!
Meanwhile, how about grabbing a bonus entry to the giveaway just by answering the following question in the comments section below?
If you had to pick one of the above to fill a 4-cost gap in your roster, who’s it going to be?
Till next time, true believers!
The Writer of this piece was: Sam Graven
Article Archive: Geeking Out
You can follow Sam on Twitter and Instagram
Rhino looks awesome! No idea how I’d go about painting him though…..
Spider woman JD all the way!! Agree about champs too, she was the first dual role character I had (maybe even released) and was tons of fun!!
As hyped as I am for Asgard it has to be Bill!