Created by Josh Bailey, Managed by Captainameridave – Last updated 8/3/21
The purpose of this guide will be to help everyone keep track of what is contained in each release, and for new players to determine their best path of early purchases. It will be updated as I’m able with each release. Card images and FFG product pages will be linked throughout.
For Hero Packs, I’ll include brief overviews of how the hero plays to help you decide if it’s an expansion that you want to track down, and also overviews of the aspect and basic cards to help you determine if the expansion is worth it if you don’t plan on using the hero. For more information on aspects and how they differ from one another, check out our Aspect Guide.
For scenarios, I’ll talk briefly about the theme, difficulty, and mechanics of each scenario as well as talking about any included modular sets and what they can bring to other scenarios you may own.
Story boxes will be a combination of all of the above and may warrant their own detailed article, which will be linked from here.
Finally, this page is heavily inspired by the oft-linked Tales From The Cards New Player Buying Guide for the Lord of the Rings LCG and features images and card info from the great Hall of Heroes and MarvelCDB resources. Many thanks to those creators.
- General Buying Advice
- Specific Buying Advice
- Core Set
- Hero Packs
- Captain America
- Ms. Marvel
- Black Widow
- Doctor Strange
- Scarlet Witch
- War Machine
- Scenario Packs
- Green Goblin
- The Wrecking Crew
- The Once And Future Kang
- The Hood
- Campaign Expansions
- The Rise of Red Skull
- Galaxy’s Most Wanted
- The Mad Titan’s Shadow
- Kree Fanatic Modular Set
General Buying Advice
Like all other LCGs, I expect the day will come that new players will ask the age-old question, “What do I buy after the Core?”. With the new distribution model of this game, we may even start to see, “Do I have to buy the Core?” and “What can I buy instead of the Core?”.
My advice depends on your playgroup situation. If you have been introduced to this game by friends that already own it and you just want to be able to play multiplayer with them, then I’d say identify your favorite hero (assuming it’s not one from the Core set) and buy just that pack, and possibly a second pack containing the aspect you most want to play if it wasn’t already included with your hero. If you are someone who enjoys deck building, I would then buy another pack of the same aspect to give you more options.
If you are playing solo, hoping to start your own group, really want to play a Core Set hero, or want to experience deck building across all the available aspects, then you are you going to want to start with a Core Set. From there I would continue as above, identifying heroes and aspects that interest you and seeking them out. One or two Hero Packs should be enough to have a good player deck. If you are also trying to build your own collection of scenarios, the best first or second purchase right now is The Rise of Red Skull, unless you want to spend a little less in which case go with The Green Goblin. If it is ever possible in the future to obtain the Standard and Expert modular sets (necessary for most scenarios) outside of the Core Set, I will note that here. Currently it is not, but you can play against The Wrecking Crew without any encounter cards from the Core Set. The scenario pack The Hood will feature new upgraded versions of the Standard and Expert sets with a higher difficulty. They are labeled Standard II and Expert II. This essentially makes it possible to play the game without having to purchase the Core Set.
Specific Buying Advice
Okay, so what if you just want to buy one or two expansions in addition to the Core Set and your tastes are based on play style and aspect more so than specific heroes? First, read through our Aspect Guide to decide what fits your preferred playstyle best, then look into the following packs:
- More Scenarios – Buy The Rise of Red Skull, if you’re willing to spend that much, or Green Goblin if you want something a little cheaper. Galaxy’s Most Wanted is great for a challenge, but is not recommended for an early purchase. Only go here when you need a boost in difficulty.
- Solid, versatile hero – Buy Captain America (most versatile), or Doctor Strange (strongest overall). Ant-Man and Quicksilver also have great versatility and are strong and thematic heroes.
- Aggression – Buy Hulk for solo (for the cards, not really the hero), then Wasp for solid Aggression cards across the board, including a new preparation card for Black Widow, then possibly Thor for multiplayer and two awesome cards, Jarnbjorn and Hall of Heroes. Gamora has Godslayer, but that’s probably all she has that’s universally good for Aggression. Buy Galaxy’s Most Wanted last as Rocket‘s cards are too specific to one playstyle.
- Justice – Buy Black Widow, and maybe Hulk if you’re willing to buy a pack for a single card.
Scarlet Witch also has great options and will help you build your pool of Justice cards. Venom‘s Justice cards are fun, but are for a more specialized playstyle.
- Protection – Buy Ms. Marvel for the cards most essential to this aspect. Galaxy’s Most Wanted has some fantastic Protection cards that give you bonuses for being a wall, then, buy Quicksilver for more solid cards, but Doctor Strange has the best Protection allies. Drax has some good cards, but they’re generally more nuanced.
- Leadership – Buy Captain America for Avengers theme or Ant-Man for allies with upgrades. Maybe get Black Widow for just Rapid Response if that deck interests you. Also take a look at The Rise of Red Skull for more Avengers allies. Star-Lord has some good allies, but a some of his Leadership cards are Guardian-centric. If you’re not getting all of those heroes right now, you might want to wait.
- Release Month: October 2019
- Heroes: Spider-Man, Captain Marvel, She Hulk, Iron Man, Black Panther
- Villains: Rhino, Klaw, Ultron
- Modular Sets: Standard, Expert, Bomb Scare, Masters of Evil, Under Attack, Doomsday Chair (MODOK), Legions of Hydra (see all Villains and Modular sets here)
- Overview: Well, you pretty much have to buy this if you want to play the game on your own. There will probably be a time in the future where you can go for a while without buying this product and instead just focus on buying whichever heroes you want to play and whatever scenarios you want to play against. You will just be missing out on components, which can be replaced with other tokens you already have, and the Standard and Expert encounter sets. The only scenario that can be played without any modular sets from the Core Set so far is The Wrecking Crew. It is worth noting, however, that a group of up to 4 players could be supplied by just one Core Set, especially if players are buying additional expansions. Such a group could split the cost of a single Core Set, buy their favorite Hero Pack, and have a decent amount of deckbuilding options provided everyone plays a different aspect. Ultimately, the Core Set is a great value and should be the starting place for anyone wanting to play the game. You get 5 heroes and enough cards to build 4 decks simultaneously as well as 3 scenarios and a few extra modular encounter sets. That much content for the cost cannot currently be replicated by only buying expansions. It is roughly the equivalent of 4 Hero Packs and 2 Scenario Packs which would retail for a total of ~100 USD.This may also be the best LCG Core Set product that FFG offers in that you can get away with just one copy and the contained scenarios are all worth your time. You will have a play-set of every card, so the only time you would potentially want more than one Core Set is if you’re determined to keep multiple decks built at once that share the same aspect or have multiple decks that want multiple copies of the same Basic cards. It is likely that many of these cards will be reprinted in Hero Packs so, if you can remain patient, even these situations may eventually go away for players with complete collections. As for the scenarios, other FFG co-op LCGs have made a tradition of the core set containing 3 scenarios with the first being a basic tutorial, the second showing off what the game can do, and the third being frustratingly difficult to the point it makes people quit the game. Thankfully, Marvel Champions keeps the good parts of that formula and gets rid of the bad parts. Rhino is very simple but the difficulty and flavor can be modified via modular encounter sets, Klaw is a fantastic scenario that can be dramatically altered by the minions that you include, and Ultron is difficult but hopefully won’t make you rage-quit like the corresponding Escape from Dol Guldur in Lord of the Rings or The Devourer Below in Arkham Horror. I expect to find myself revisiting all three Core Set villains in the future, especially as new modular sets are released.
- Release Month: December 2019
- Aspect: Leadership
- Nemesis: Baron Zemo
- Full Card List
- Notable Cards: Squirrel Girl, Falcon, Avengers Assemble, Avengers Tower
- Reprints (9 total): Hawkeye, Mockingbird, The Power of Leadership x2, Make the Call x2, Energy, Genius, Strength
- Hero Overview: Cap can be built to do whatever you want, and do it well. A 2-2-2 stat line with a built-in readying ability and consistent access to his shield for +1 DEF and Retaliate means you can make Cap a good thwarter, attacker, defender, or all of the above. His alter-ego side even boasts an Ally cost-reducing effect if you want to go that route. Most of his cards are straightforward and efficient, making him a great choice for a teaching deck. He is also probably the best true-solo hero from the Core set through at least the first four Hero Packs. If there is anywhere that Cap is lacking, it’s in his relatively low REC of 3.
- Player Cards Overview: Outside of Captain America, this pack contains support for an Avengers-themed deck or possibly an all-Avengers hero team in multiplayer. Avengers Assemble is the kind of card you probably build a whole deck around if you’re going to use it, with Avengers Tower likely being a key piece. Enraged could also be a card featured in future decks that focus on upgrading a monster ally.
- Release Month: December 2019
- Aspect: Protection
- Nemesis: Thomas Edison
- Full Card List
- Notable Cards: Like, all of them. Preemptive Strike, Nova, Energy Barrier, Tackle, Melee, Concussive Blow, Endurance, Down Time
- Reprints (8 total): Get Behind Me x2, The Power of Protection x2, Avengers Mansion Energy, Genius, Strength
- Hero Overview: They followed up the best hero for a new player with possibly the worst hero for a new player. Ms. Marvel is quite tricksy, requiring constant identity-flipping and hand management and using abilities off multiple cards in play to trigger big burst turns. She focuses on recurring events that have the “Attack,” “Thwart,” or “Defense” keywords, so most likely you will be building her to focus on one of those types of events. She tends to have a quiet turn or two and then will deal 20 damage or remove all threat in play in one big turn. Her deck has lots of moving parts and each turn is its own little puzzle to figure out. This hero is a personal favorite of mine and will be one of yours too if you’re into card combos and working out the best timing of multiple abilities.
- Player Cards Overview: Holy moly! This pack was originally released at the same time as Captain America and Green Goblin, so I kind of think of all those cards together as one, big release. But looking back at just this pack, it’s almost-all-killer-hardly-any-filler. Protection gets some important tools to control the game and deal damage and not just defend. Energy Barrier, Preemptive Strike, and Nova are great for damage reduction and ping damage and make both Iron Man and Captain Marvel Protection very interesting due to the Energy Resource icons and Energy Barrier being a Tech upgrade. Tackle and Concussive Blow each give a bit more damage and control options to Protection and Justice, respectively. Down Time and Endurance are great for staying alive and thinning your deck, and throwing extra copies on teammates in multiplayer is solid. Down Time is perfect for Captain America with its Physical Resource icon and boosting Recovery.
- Release Month: March 2020
- Aspect: Aggression
- Nemesis: Loki
- Full Card List
- Notable Cards: Hall of Heroes, Jarnbjorn, Heimdall, Under Surveillance, Second Wind, Enhanced Physique
- Reprints (8 total): Chase Them Down x2, The Power of Aggression x2, Avengers Mansion Energy, Genius, Strength
- Hero Overview: Thor is interesting in that he seems to be the first niche hero, meaning he quite clearly has a focus on one aspect of the game and therefore will likely be very strong against some scenarios and very weak against others. Thor wants to find a worthy opponent and that means engaging minions. His Hero ability and Defender of the Nine Realms grant you bonuses for engaging minions and cards like Hammer Throw and Lightning Strike help you deal with them. His 1 Thwart can make him difficult in solo, and multiplayer always increases the odds that there will minions for Thor to deal with. He also has a small hand size, so deck building for Thor outside of large multiplayer games will be challenging as you try to balance his strengths and weaknesses. Some players will not enjoy a hero that lacks the broad effectiveness of someone like Captain America, but it is good that the game will support more focused heroes as well.
- Player Cards Overview: The Aggression cards in this pack share the same focus on minions that Thor does, which makes them pretty obvious includes for a Thor Aggression deck. The two allies Hercules and Valkyrie definitely want engaged minions to get full value, and are supported by Get Over Here! which may also save your teammates some damage. Jarnbjorn is going to get a lot of attention in Aggression decks for the foreseeable future, and I’m only highlighting Heimdall because his stats are big and cards that support keeping big allies around could make him very good. Under Surveillance is an amazing card for solo Justice players. Second Wind is expensive but it also can provide more healing than most heroes’ Recover stat and doesn’t care if you’re in Hero or Alter-Ego form, so it’s worth a look. This pack is probably going to be a must-buy for Aggression decks due to Jarnbjorn alone, but overall it is extremely focused on minion control so if that’s not your thing you could skip it.
- Release Month: US June 2020/outside US May 2020
- Aspect: Justice
- Nemesis: Taskmaster
- Full Card List
- Notable Cards: Agent Coulson, Quake, Quincarrier, Rapid Response, Defensive Stance
- Reprints (10 total): The Power of Justice x2, Surveillance Team x2, Interrogation Room x2, Nick Fury, Energy, Genius, Strength
- Hero Overview: Black Widow has a very reactive playstyle that lends itself to playing control decks that rely on consistent ping damage to defeat the villain. Most of her signature suite is focused on the Preparation card type, which are upgrades that you play during the hero phase but generally trigger during the villain phase. It’s a lot like laying traps for the villain. You can get additional card draw in Alter-Ego form through Natasha’s Mission Prep ability and the card Safe House #29, but all of the preparations in her signature suite can only be triggered as a hero so I like to build Black Widow decks that try to stay in hero form as much as possible. Being in alter-ego with a Grappling Hook in play and watching Shadow of the Past get revealed is a feel-bad moment. Justice gets a few extra preparations plus Agent Coulson so that is a natural deck to build and can really control the game, but I find that damage builds up quickly compared to her 9 hit points and forces you into Alter-Ego a lot which turns off many preparations. Therefore, I have really been liking Protection Black Widow to make use of Defensive Stance and Synth-Suit to stay in hero form for most of the game and eventually becoming nearly immortal once you’re set up. Another way to play Black Widow is to use Jarnbjorn in an Aggression deck that can trigger three times off of a single Dance of Death or even during the villain phase off of Attacrobatics or Widow’s Bite.
- Player Cards Overview: This pack finally catches up the Justice card pool to the other aspects, but I am a little disappointed in the amount of space given to the preparation card type. They are fine cards but at the time of release I don’t see them going into many of my current non-Black Widow Justice decks. It’s a similar situation to all of the minion-focused cards in the Thor pack. Agent Coulson‘s ability and Spy traits at least make it easy to splash Counterintelligence or Spycraft into a Justice deck with a different hero, but I don’t see those as build-around cards or that much better than other Justice options. I like Quake‘s ability for any Justice deck that will regularly be in Alter-Ego form (She-Hulk, Ms. Marvel) and I think any 2-cost ally is good. It seems like all of the best Justice cards to be released since the Core Set have been the off-aspect cards from other packs. On that note, I do really like the preparations for other aspects included in this release, with Defensive Stance being worth a look in Iron Man and Captain Marvel Protection decks and Rapid Response likely being a key piece in some future, janky Leadership deck (or just drawing all of the cards with Maria Hill).
- Release Month: July 2020
- Aspect: Protection
- Nemesis: Baron Mordo
- Full Card List
- Notable Cards: Iron Fist, The Night Nurse, Iron Man
- Reprints (8 total): The Power of Protection x2, Med Team x2, Avengers Mansion,
- Energy, Genius, Strength
- Hero Overview: Upon release, many claimed that Doctor Strange was so powerful as to potentially break the game. It is still early days as of the time of this writing, so we will see if that turns out to be true. His Invocation deck is indeed very powerful (notably Winds of Watoomb and Crimson Bands of Cyttorak) if you get the right card for the right situation, and that sums up what it’s like to play him. If you are able to play the Invocation cards for their full benefit often enough (Wong can help with this) then you will run away with the game. If the cards don’t quite line up for you then you may struggle for a few rounds. This deck is best suited to a player willing to build for a turn or two in order to have a big, flashy turn. Because you want to play Invocation cards as often as possible, the primary demands on your play are Hero exhausts and resources to pay for the spells. This means you want readying, or at least minimal other cards requiring you to exhaust/defend, and a low cost curve. The main weakness of Doctor Strange’s signature cards is a lack of small damage output for dealing with minions. You may find yourself under-utilizing a Magic Blast just to get rid of a troublesome minion. It would seem this would make Aggression a good aspect for Strange to shore up his weaknesses, but many of the cards in the current Aggression pool trigger off of basic attacks, which uses up a precious hero exhaust and Strange only has a base ATK of 1. Leadership, as always, gets a special nod in solo because it makes it easier to have multiple targets for Seven Rings of Raggadorr.
- Player Cards Overview: After the game has gone on for a few years, this will most likely be looked back on as the Iron Fist ally pack. The damage output and Stun is so good, and not to mention minimizing the impact of Tough enemies, that I almost can’t imagine a Protection deck that wouldn’t use him (barring future errata or an even better hero version of Iron Fist). We also get the welcome addition of status card removal with The Night Nurse. Depending on the amount of ally upgrades we get, Iron Man could become a very good reason to pick up this pack as well. Desperate Defense and Unflappable focus on rewarding you for defending without taking damage, so this pack could be useful for Spider-Man, Captain America, and certain Black Widow builds. I maintain that all 2-cost allies are good and Clea will feel like you have two in your deck. Momentum Shift is a nice option for small amounts of healing without foregoing the chance to keep putting out damage.
- Release Month: August 2020
- Aspect: Aggression
- Nemesis: Abomination
- Full Card List
- Notable Cards: Beat Cop, You’ll Pay For That, Toe to Toe, Brawn, Sentry, She-Hulk
- Reprints (7 total): The Power of Aggression x2, Helicarrier, Avengers Mansion, Energy, Genius, Strength
- Hero Overview: Hulk smash. That’s pretty much all you need to know. With 0 Thwart and 3 Attack, it’s obvious that Hulk is going to be dealing damage and leaning on others to remove threat. So if you play multiplayer and enjoy the role of primary damage dealer, Hulk may be the hero for you. In solo, your goal is to find a way to remove just enough threat to give you time to outrace the villain when it comes to damage. With many damage-dealing events in his signature suite, that’s not hard for Hulk to do. Having 3 Defense and 18 hit points, not to mention access to Immovable Object, Hulk can do a pretty good job of staying in Hero mode the entire game to minimize threat accrual. The other main concern when playing as Hulk is the hand size and inability to hold on to cards in hero form. Following the trend of other high-attack heroes, Hulk’s hand size is only 4 in hero form, but also only 5 in alter-ego. This makes it difficult to pay for more than one card every turn, but that can be a benefit for a teaching deck since the hero is super-focused and the player’s turn is just deciding which one card they want to play. This is occasionally offset by the Limitless Strength resource card. Hulk also benefits greatly from resource-generating cards like Martial Prowess and cost-reducing cards like Helicarrier.
- Player Cards Overview: This is a strong set of player cards, overall. This is a good buy if you’re looking to play solo Aggression, physical/event-focused Aggression, or just need Beat Cop for your Justice deck. The only cards that I don’t think I’ll be playing often are Drop Kick and Resourceful, because the former is a little expensive and the latter seems like I’d rather play Quincarrier or one of the Enhanced upgrades if resource type was very important to me. Beat Cop looks busted to me and probably one of the first cards to receive a balancing errata. The effect doesn’t win you games so much as stop you from losing, but it stands out that there is no limit on either copies per player or threat stored/damage dealt by the card. I expect to see a “max 1 per player” and/or damage limit on this card in the future. It has made me happy though to ace Ronan when he comes out late-game and imagine the cop as a last-day-before-retirement/too-old-for-this-s*** character that saves the day. Sentry has better ATK/THW stats than any currently available Hero identity so the encounter card is fully justified. She-Hulk is another contender for a build-around Ally and something that may be interesting with Leadership/Aggression Spider-Woman in the future (Hulk and She-Hulk allies in the same deck? Yes, please). I like Brawn a lot in solo Aggression builds. He’s not flashy but he keeps you in the game long enough to deal the knockout blow. Speaking of solo Aggression, You’ll Pay for That is a nice thwarting option for an aspect that struggles with it and possibly pairs with Toe to Toe. Both of those cards look good for Aggression Spider-Man. I’ve been playing around with decks that look to defend most attacks and that makes Electrostatic Armor look pretty good, especially in Captain America. That deck is probably something I’ll post an article about in the near future. Finally, it’s nothing crazy but To The Rescue is a card that is nice to have in the pool and I’m a little surprised it wasn’t in the Core Set.
- Release Month: Released November 2020
- Aspect: Leadership
- Nemesis: Yellowjacket
- Full Card List
- Notable Cards: Ant-Man: Hank Pym, Stinger, Team-Building Exercise, Moment of Triumph
- Reprints (5 total): First Aid x2, Energy, Genius, Strength
- Hero Overview: Ant-Man has one of the more enjoyable piloting experiences of the currently released heroes. With multiple hero forms to swap between and lots of triggers for various effects based on which hero form you choose, there are lots of things to think about when planning your turn. Though the overall strategy may be different, playing Ant-Man feels like playing a cross between Ms. Marvel and She-Hulk. Ant-Man covers a lot of bases with his hero cards as you have damage, thwarting, status card control, healing, and card draw. That means you can build Ant-Man to do just about anything, but you may find yourself drawing damage cards when you need thwarting or vice versa. An all-around solid and fun-to-play hero.
- Player Cards Overview: The Leadership cards in this pack are tilted towards an upgraded allies build, though Stinger will probably be in every Leadership deck for an Avenger hero until the game goes out of print. Ant-Man – Hank Pym is a good, versatile ally that is a cost-effective thwarter and a big damage sponge or a cheap blocker, depending on how much you want to spend. Ronin, Power Gloves, and Reinforced Suit join the previous Iron Man ally and Sky Cycle in an emerging “Voltron allies” deck. Team-Building Exercise is a card that seems like it could get a lot of use in certain heroes (Thor comes to mind) or Leadership decks that focus on a single trait for its allies, like Avengers. Moment of Triumph is a fun card that looks made for Thor, Hulk, and the upcoming Rocket Raccoon, and is very useful for anyone playing solo Aggression as it can reduce the need to flip to alter-ego and thus increase threat buildup (this somewhat depends on an interaction between the card and an Overkill attack which has not been ruled on at the time of this writing).
- Release Month: January 2021
- Aspect: Aggression
- Nemesis: Beetle
- Full Card List
- Notable Cards: Boot Camp, Surprise Attack, All for One, The Power in All of Us, Quincarrier (Reprint), Spider-Man: Miles Morales, Ironheart
- Reprints (9 total): The Power of Aggression x2, Swarm Tactics, Quincarrier, Energy, Genius, Strength, Pym Particles x2 (These are part of Wasp’s hero kit. However, they’re worth noting as this is the first time any cards have been reprinted from another hero kit (Ant-Man)).
- Hero Overview: Wasp has a lot of options available to her in her hero kit. That gives her flexibility, but makes her a bit of a mixed bag too. First, let me say that she flips the script on Ant-Man in two important ways: 1. Wasp’s hero kit focuses on events, while Ant-Man’s focuses on upgrades. 2. Wasp can do more damage in Tiny form and more thwarting in Giant form, whereas Ant-man does the opposite. Wasp has 9 events in her hero kit and 7 of them will give you an alternate effect depending on which hero form you are currently occupying. Also, all of those events are focused on attacking and/or thwarting. The choices come more in how you want to deal that damage/thwart. She has x2 Pym Particles in her hero kit as well. These don’t seem to synergize as well with her kit like Ant-Man’s, but the card draw/healing are welcome as she wouldn’t have those otherwise. Her hero abilities are cool, and they kind of provide you with two separate deck-building paths. You can legitimately build a Wasp deck that only wants to take advantage of one of her hero forms and does so in some cool ways. As you can see by my lengthy overview, it’s difficult to pinpoint a singular focus for Wasp. But, I think these types of heroes have the most deck-building potential. So, I’m excited to see what the community creates.
- Player Cards Overview: Wasp is paired with the Aggression aspect. Her Aggression cards don’t have a particular focus, but she comes with some solid selections. Lie in Wait is a new Preparation card that Black Widow can make use of, but is still good with most decks. Into the Fray provides high damage and another thwarting option. Surprise Attack is one of the standouts for me as it is excellent damage for its cost, something that can really help a solo Aggression deck take out the villain quickly. Boot Camp is also a lot of fun. My first thought goes to Spider-Woman and playing this with Team Training for a ton of overpowered allies, but this card is also fantastic for multiplayer. For Basic cards, this pack adds two new heroes in Spider-Man: Miles Morales and Ironheart. These are two solid heroes that will start popping up in a lot of decks. The Power in all of Us is the Basic ‘Power of’ card and will likely encourage more gray decks in the future. The popular Quincarrier has been reprinted for this pack. For the other aspects, Perseverance is a great card for Protection. Being able to slap tough on your hero for a cheap cost is a lot of fun, and I feel it was something that had been lacking in Protection. Lastly, I want to mention All for One, as this is the first Leadership Attack Event, which I’m sure will make the Ms. Marvel fans happy.
- Release Month: February 2021
- Aspect: Protection
- Nemesis: Avalanche
- Full Card List
- Notable Cards: Multiple Man, Never Back Down, Adrenaline Rush, Civic Duty, Beat ‘Em Up
- Reprints (5 total): Armored Vest x2, Energy, Genius, Strength
- Hero Overview: Quicksilver is an awesome hero. He’s not Doctor Strange/Captain America tier, but he’s definitely in the Ant-Man range. Tons of potential with a couple of notable weaknesses. He’s easy to play and fun to play. Quicksilver’s hero kit relies on building the combo of boosting his stats and readying him as much as possible to make use of those stats. He comes equipped with an upgrade to boost each of his basic stats by 1. Quicksilver gets one free ready every phase, which allows you two uses of basic powers during the hero phase and one free one during the villain phase. This means you can defend once for free on the villain’s turn. You can still defend a second time if you need to, but the second will cause you to be exhausted going into your next turn. The free defense makes him incredibly unique and really helps his low HP of 9. Quicksilver comes with 4 copies of Always Be Running, which allows you to ready and activate beyond 2 times during your turn. This means you can have crazy turns if you build up his stats high enough and/or can keep readying him. Don’t sleep on the combo of paying for Always Be Running with Friction Resistance, as it allows you to continually have a resource to pay for that card. Serval Industries also allows you to keep pulling back Quicksilver cards when you switch to Alter-Ego. This gives you more opportunities for Always Be Running. Speed Cyclone is also a good target for this if you find yourself getting beat down by the villain. Quicksilver has two notable weaknesses. His HP is low and he can be squishy, especially at the start of the game, when your defense is still 1. Free defense or not, when your health is that low, the villain can still overwhelm you with big attacks. It’s probably rare that you would lose from that, but it’s something to watch out for, as it can really catch you off guard. The other is over-exhausting, stunning, and confusing. If you’re up against a villain that uses any of these very much, that’s gonna slow you down (pun intended). Quicksilver has two copies of Double Time, but beyond that he really has no way around these conditions outside of his Always Be Running card, so keep those handy. Overall, Quicksilver is a blast to play and he’s extremely versatile in terms of his focus. In solo, I’d say Protection is slightly better as it allows you to protect yourself a bit more from damage, but really any aspect is manageable.
- Player Cards Overview: The Protection cards in this pack may not be essential to every deck, but they are all good. The best of these is Never Back Down. It boosts your defense by 2, and if you come out unscathed, you stun the enemy. That’s a great value for stun and an easy include for high defense characters. Nerves of Steel is the Martial Prowess of Protection. It’s nice to have something dedicated solely to those events, so you don’t have to worry about losing a card or one of your other resource generators going into your next turn. Side Step is a solid 3 damage prevention that doesn’t require you to defend. It can also deal back damage with a resource bonus. Protection keeps pumping out some of the most unique allies. Warlock is a decent card. I’m not sure his cost overall is worth it, but it’s nice to have an ally that you can keep on the board indefinitely to attack/thwart for you. Multiple Man is the first non-unique/sort of unique ally. He takes up three spots in your deck, but you’re essentially getting three blocks for the cost of one ally. He’s fun to play. This pack has some great Basic cards. Order and Chaos is a solid Team-Up card. Adrenaline Rush and Civic Duty are great includes for any hero trying to boost their stats (like Quicksilver!), because you can stack them and save them for big turns. Beat ‘Em Up takes the Squirrel Girl/Ground Stomp idea and now makes it available to any player. For the off-aspect cards, Justice gets Sense of Justice completing the trilogy with Martial Prowess and Nerves of Steel. Lastly, Leadership gets some ally healing in United We Stand, and Aggression gets a Piercing, attack boost in Brute Force. Both of these cards are fine, but require a more focused approach to their aspects.
- Release Month: March 2021
- Aspect: Justice
- Nemesis: Luminous
- Full Card List
- Notable Cards: Wiccan, Crisis Averted, Swift Retribution, Turn the Tide, Spiritual Meditation, Bait and Switch
- Reprints (8 total): Order and Chaos, Heroic Intuition x2, The Power of Justice x2, Energy, Genius, Strength
- Hero Overview: Scarlet Witch doesn’t play like any hero before her. The weapons in her arsenal are similar to Dr. Strange, but her play style is radically different. Scarlet Witch utilizes a chance mechanic by discarding cards from the encounter deck. Usually this involves counting boost icons for various effects like with Hex Bolt or Molecular Decay. This translates to powerful abilities, but eating through the encounter deck will eventually start to cost you as the acceleration tokens pile up; she also suffers slightly from inconsistency as you can’t always control what your cards are going to do. Her Chaos Control ability on her hero card allows her to discard an encounter card in place of another wherein you are counting the boost icons. So, if the villain hits a 2-boost, you can discard another card in its place. Maybe you hit a 0-boost this time, but you might hit a 3-boost. In solo, you’ll probably kill the villain before this hurts you too much. But, because the encounter deck doesn’t really grow with the player size, this means Scarlet Witch can be much more dangerous the higher the player count. Scarlet Witch is random, but she’s also a blast to play. Much like Quicksilver, she kind of feels like you’re breaking all the rules when you play her. This is evident in cards like Warp Reality, currently the most powerful cancel in the game. Then there’s Chaos Magic, which lets you play a card without paying its cost (this is always fun). Scarlet Witch’s Crest along with your Chaos Control ability give you mastery over boost icons. Molecular Decay is high potential damage and features a Sentinel in the art! But the heart of her deck is in Hex Bolt. It does everything: damage, threat control, card draw, and status effects. She has four copies of this card and with a cost of 2, you can get a lot of traction out of one card. It is random, but you have a good chance of nudging things in the direction that you need. The most powerful effect on the card is the ability to pick a status effect. Many of the best heroes have status effects available in their kit. No hero has the ability to choose whatever status effect you want except the Scarlet Witch. She’s not as powerful as Dr. Strange (because she doesn’t have an Invocation Deck), but when you’re playing as her, you’ll definitely have moments where you feel like The Sorcerer Supreme. Just be aware that you’re gonna have to fight the Dr. Strange player for that card.
- Player Cards Overview: Finally, we get another Justice pack. Is anyone else feeling starved for new Justice cards? Well, we’ve got some good options here. Crisis Averted allows you to bypass a crisis icon, but it’s also a chunky threat removal of 6, which has been lacking so far. Multitasking is a cheap way to remove threat from two different schemes. This is a good include if you know a lot of side schemes are coming up. Swift Retribution is solid cheap damage. Combine it with confused and you get the damage without having the villain scheme. Turn the Tide is my favorite new Justice card. It does a 3 damage for 0 and all you have to do is finish off a scheme. This is great damage for the Justice aspect. The two new allies are Speed and Wiccan. Speed is a good way to get some thwarting out fast, but Wiccan is the better of the two. At 2 cost and 3 health, he would almost be worth it at just that. But he also throws down an extra 0-3 damage every time he thwarts. For basic cards, we get Spiritual Meditation. Like The Sorcerer Supreme, this only works with Mystic characters. It’s a good card in general, but especially for Scarlet Witch who is great at milling through her deck and grabbing what she needs. Recuperation is extra healing when in alter-ego mode. I like this card, it definitely has its uses, but I’d prefer it to work in hero mode. Browbeat is more damage for Aggression. Leadership’s Last Stand is an interesting card that allows you to boost an allies attack at the cost of discarding the ally at the end of the turn. It encourages you to not keep your allies around for a chump block, but it is a good value. Lastly, Protection gets Bait and Switch. Expect to see this in a lot of Protection decks going forward, especially for solo as its the first Protection card that removes threat. This has the villain attack you to take 4 threat off the scheme. It provides cheap, powerful threat removal at the cost of an attack, which Protection should be able to deal with easily. And you can use it to trigger effects from your other Protection cards as well.
- Release Month: May 2021
- Aspect: Leadership
- Nemesis: Mister Knife
- Full Card List
- Notable Cards: Adam Warlock, Yondu, Blaze of Glory, Dive Bomb, Agile Flight, Ever Vigilant
- Reprints (7 total): Get Ready x2, Power of Leadership x2, Enhanced Awareness x3
- Hero Overview: Star-Lord is a hot mess. But, mostly in a good way. Star-Lord’s schtick is that he is constantly trading extra encounter cards to reduce the cost of cards in hand. So, his cards have a high cost curve, but that encourages you to play these more powerful cards. As you build him, you’ll be able to gain more and more beneficial effects (hand size/reduced damage/attack/thwart) for having more encounter cards in front of you. The downside to this is obvious. Taking that many extra encounter cards can carry with it a big risk. Because, no matter how well you’re doing, catching an Advance or extra attack at the wrong time can end the game for you. And the more cards that are in front of you, the more likely that’s going to happen. The obvious comparison here is Scarlet Witch. So far, these are the only two heroes with risky play-styles (unless you count choosing Hulk as risky, lol). But Scarlet Witch feels like you’re slowly surpassing the speed limit sort of steering the bad in your favor. Things can go bad, but you have a chance of ending the game before that gets out of hand. Star-Lord on the other hand feels more like flipping a coin. Eventually, you’re going to hit something bad. That may happen this game or next, but it’s going to happen. On the flip side, you’re going to have huge amazing turns. And when you pull off a big win, it’s a great feeling. I’d also like to note that the Guardians have a higher thwart potential than the average Avenger hero. Star-Lord is no exception as both he and Rocket Raccoon now have the ability to get to a basic 3 thwart with their hero kits outside of Heroic Intuition. In addition, Star-Lord can boost all of his allies’ thwart as well. Overall, Star-Lord has some very interesting options in each of the aspects that are a lot of fun to explore. He’s a powerful hero that will undoubtedly cause some huge cheers and big sighs, but one thing you can’t call him is boring.
- Player Cards Overview: Ok, we’re starting with the new Leadership cards. Laser Blaster is an ally upgrade that grants +1 attack and overkill to the ally. It’s fantastic on high attack allies. Allies w/o consequential damage are also good. Target Practice gives a +2 attack for an ally for one turn, but they have to have a weapon upgrade. The best thing about this card is that it’s a support. So, you can leave it out and stack it until you want to use it. Blaze of Glory is the best of the new Leadership cards. For a cost of 2, it grants +2 thwart and +2 attack to every guardian in play. That’s a huge game-ending card and it’s super cheap. If you don’t win when using this, each Guardian will take a damage (though there are some ways around this), but that’s a small price to pay. Adam Warlock is a lot of fun. When you use one of his basic powers, you have to discard a card at random from your hand to get a powerful effect. The trick is to not use him until you’re down to one card in hand with the resource you choose. Beta Ray Bill is a powerful new Asgard ally who can take out minions and thwart at the same time. But, he’s difficult to play outside of someone like Star-Lord because his cost is so high. Then there’s Yondu. Yondu takes no consequential damage for attacking. So, load him up with upgrades and let him become a one man Ranged wrecking crew for your hero. Next each aspect gets an event that benefits heroes with the aerial trait. Air Supremacy is a solid way to do significant damage to several enemies, but you’ll need allies that are Aerial also (hello Sky Cycle). Agile Flight lets you remove a total of 5 threat from among schemes as you choose. It’s a powerful way to get the most out of your thwarting. Dive Bomb is huge damage for Aggression. It’s expensive, but something that Aggression has been lacking. Ever Vigilant is my favorite. It’s a cost of 2 that lets you ready your hero and remove 2 threat from the main scheme. This would be a great deal if all you got out of it was a ready, but the threat removal is a nice bonus. Lastly, we have the Basic cards. Cosmo is a 2 cost ally. He pairs well with Star-Lord and Spider-Woman because you can check the top card of your deck before using him. C.I.T.T. is great for any Guardian allowing you to pay 2 for a ready. Knowhere ups your ally limit and gives a draw bonus. And Pulse Grenade is best in Scenarios with lots of amplify. Otherwise, it can be very unreliable.
- Release Month: May 2021
- Aspect: Aggression (w/ Justice & Protection)
- Nemesis: Nebula
- Full Card List
- Notable Cards: Angela, Godslayer, First Hit, True Grit, Hit and Run
- Reprints (10 total): Uppercut x2, Combat Training x2, Enhanced Reflexes x3, Energy, Genius, Strength
- Hero Overview: Gamora is joining the game as another great versatile hero. She’s not flashy, but she’s incredibly efficient. Her alter-ego ability is a deck construction ability that allows you to include up to six attack/thwart events from other aspects other than your chosen aspect. This allows you to have a deck full of powerful cards that addresses your main two concerns: dealing damage and removing thwart. If that’s not enough, her hero ability triggers the other effect once per turn. So, when you play an attack event, you get to remove one thwart and when you play a thwart event you get to deal one damage. This is complemented by the fact that her hero cards come in at a very low cost curve, allowing her to easily play multiple events in a turn. AND she even has a couple of events that act as both an attack and a thwart, so you can trigger both of these effects at the same time. Her signature ally Nebula even allows you to search your deck for the perfect attack/thwart card for the situation. She is limited in her variety. Attacking and thwarting are great, but if you want more powerful effects like status cards or card draw, then you need to address that in your deck-building. You’re also not encouraged to use too many allies as that muddies up your deck. You always want to have attack and thwart events available to get the most out of her. Overall, Gamora is a fantastic hero that stands out in solo play, but is also a powerful asset in multiplayer.
- Player Cards Overview: Aggression has some solid new choices. Angela is a ‘free’ ally whose cost is pulling a minion. She pairs well with Thor. Clobber is a 3 damage event that’ll come back to your hand if it’s the first card you play that turn. This allows you to play it again or use it as a resource for something else. Plan of Attack allows you to search for an Attack event in the top cards of your deck. It will pair with certain strategies better than others. But it’s good for finding the card you really need. Then there’s Godslayer. This is a great weapon upgrade that gives +2 attack when you use your basic attack on a unique enemy. For the Protection aspect, First Hit gives you an option of using it as an action to attack the villain or an interrupt to hit an attacking minion before they hit you. It’s cheap and versatile, a solid option for any Protection deck. True Grit is another thwarting option. It pairs best with heroes with high thwart. Protection is really rounding out some great thwarting options. Justice gets Impede, which is like Clobber for thwarting. Ms. Marvel could get some interesting use out of these. Pivotal Moment is powerful damage in the Justice aspect if you can keep the main scheme clear. Comms Implant is an ally upgrade for Leadership that gives +1 thwart and +1 hp. It’s a solid way to build some consistent thwart on your team. For the Basic cards, we get the Drax ally. He can only attack the villain, but he’s solid damage for a three cost with 4 hp. Hit and Run obviously pairs best with someone like Gamora, but it’s also a good option for anyone trying to get multiple things done in a single turn. It’s expensive, but you don’t have to worry about drawing two different cards at the right time.
- Release Month: June 2021
- Aspect: Protection
- Nemesis: Yotat the Destroyer
- Full Card List
- Notable Cards: Hard Knocks, Martyr, Moondragon, Subdue, “Think Fast!”
- Reprints (13 total): Counter-Punch x2, Indomitable x2, Athletic Training x3, Enhanced Physique x3, Energy, Genius, Strength
- Hero Overview: It’s hard to play Drax and not think of him as what Hulk should have been. Right down to just changing the Vengeance Counters to Anger Counters or Rage Counters. I’ll touch on that more in a moment. I have to give kudos to the game developers for his design, because they really did manage to make him feel more like your taking on the villain one on one. There’s this unique feeling of being in a boxing match. The villain hits you and you hit him back and you just keep trading blows until someone goes down. Drax’s playstyle wants the villain to attack you as this is the only way you can build your Vengeance Counters. The Vengeance Counters give you +1 attack. So Drax can get up to +4 or even +5 w/ Drax’s Knife. From there, it’s all about using your basic attack to punish the villain. Drax’s kit just compliments this so well. I particularly love the card draw options his kit gives you. Once he’s built up, you don’t even notice his reduced hand size in hero form. Beyond that, his kit is very inexpensive making it easier to build your board state faster. Too Stubborn to Die is a nice failsafe as you’re tempting fate by getting attacked all the time. And Mantis is fantastic Signature Ally providing much needed healing for Drax. Drax feels strong and he’s not overly difficult to play. He can be paired with any aspect, Protection makes sense with his playstyle, but they all work well particularly Aggression (he can dish out a lot of damage). His playstyle is a bit risky, but more on the level of Scarlet Witch than Star-Lord. But the concept is simple: get attacked, get stronger. See what I mean about him feeling like Hulk? The angrier he gets, the stronger he gets. He’s just so much more functional than Hulk too. He can’t do a 13+ damage attack, but you can consistently get 4+ damage attacks multiple times in a turn once his counters are maxed out. That’s pretty good. His weakness is also thwarting, but he has a MUCH better thwart card in Intimidation and he does at least have +1 thwart on his stat line. Drax is definitely one of the best built Bruisers in the game and he’s not inherently frustrating to play like some Green Goliaths I know.
- Player Cards Overview: Drax comes with Protection. His cards are ok, but their mostly either good with Drax or just situational in general. Deflection is a good way to block a lot of damage at once, but it is on the expensive side considering you have to discard cards as well. Hard Knocks is my favorite new Protection card. This one offers damage to the aspect and can give you a tough status card if you defeat an enemy with it. It’s a little expensive, so make sure you get the tough status to make it worth it. Leading Blow is a very unique and very situational card. It works best with Drax or heroes with high attacks because you’re purposely taking a chance on lowering your attack for the opportunity to ready. Ideally, you want to have a high enough attack that you can guarantee a ready and hopefully have your attack reduced by a small amount or not at all. When it works, it works great. Subdue is good because it’s cheap and allows you to reduce an attack by -3 w/o any conditions. You don’t have to exhaust and you don’t have to be the target, which means you can help protect other heroes/allies w/o having to tie up your own turn. For Protection allies we have Martyr and Moondragon. Martyr can be a great blocker, but you need some minions for her to kill to get the most out of her. You want her to kill things for you, so she can then block for you. She doesn’t work super great with Drax because he wants to be attacked, but she can be a great ally in the right scenario. Moondragon is a very unique card. She can essentially take over the mind of a minion and use them to attack another enemy. But you have to get rid of her to use that ability. I think there will be minions in the future that make this card essential in the right circumstances, but for now you can do cool things like use minions with Villainous to attack enemies w/ retaliate. The only new basic card is the Gamora ally. She has a solid ability that allows you to dig for events, she’s definitely good in the right deck. For the other aspects, Aggression gets “Bring It!”. This gives some good card draw to Aggression. Justice gets “Think Fast!”. This is a consistent, cheap way to confuse the villain in the Justice aspect. The biggest limitation here isn’t the damage, but that it’s only for Guardians. It’s a great option for Guardians playing Justice. For Leadership, Regroup is an interesting way to keep your allies around longer, but it’s Forced Interrupt means you have to be ready to use it the turn you play it.
- Release Month: July 2021
- Aspect: Justice
- Nemesis: Enraged Symbiote x4
- Full CardList
- Notable Cards: Jack Flag, Making an Entrance, Sonic Rifle, Fusillade, Side Holster
- Reprints (8 total): The Power of Justice x2, Resourceful x3, Energy, Genius, Strength
- Hero Overview: Venom is a great hero that doesn’t quit. He’s easily one of the most versatile heroes in the game thus far. He’s got all the tools (or weapons) which makes him extremely versatile. Venom’s playstyle focuses around his ability to carry more weapons than your average hero. Typically, a hero is Restricted to two weapon/restricted cards by the Restricted keyword. Venom breaks that rule by being able to carry an extra weapon. I guess the symbiote’s tendrils can act as extra hands. He also comes with a new Basic card, Side Holster, that allows him to get up to a fourth weapon. But really his focus on weapons is almost a misdirection as most of Venom’s kit doesn’t play off his weapons at all. His cards are actually very event heavy. The weapons mostly serve as a support to these actions allowing Venom to consistently manage attack/threat on the side while performing bigger hits/thwarts using his events. He also has a great hero ability that allows him to take a damage to generate a wild resource. This synergizes great with his own kit, that has a lot of ‘kickers’ in it, but it’s also great for building around ‘kickers’ in each of the aspects. Not to mention, it’s really powerful to have an extra resource available each phase. Run & Gun serves as a great attack/thwart tool as you can easily get off 12/11 damage/threat removal with just his base weapons out. And in terms of his design, I really appreciate that a couple of his cards give a nod to Spider-Man‘s abilities (Spider-Sense, Grasping Tendrils). These heroes make a great 2-player team. All in all, Venom is an easy buy. He’s a blast to play and a strong hero in solo and multiplayer, even if he’s not the Eddie Brock we knew as kids. Here’s hoping Brock will be a hero one day too.
- Player Cards Overview: This is only the third Justice pack we’ve gotten. This wouldn’t be my first buy if you’re looking for cards in that aspect, but there’s also not a ton of options for Justice cards, so you might want to pick it up just to build that pool. Making an Entrance is the best one here. It bumps up your thwart +2 for one use, but if you clear a scheme, you also heal for 2. It’s a way to heal in the Justice aspect that also gives you a good thwart boost. This can be exactly what you need to stay in hero mode and finish the fight or provide some breathing room when switching to alter-ego mode. Either way it’s a cheap card that allows you to cross multiple tasks off your to do list. Don’t skip on this. Sonic Rifle may seem a bit expensive for only two uses, but keep in mind that Confuse is very powerful and being able to deal damage when the villain is already confused gives it more versatility. You can also just hang onto it and save it for the opportune moment. Scare Tactic combos well with Sonic Rifle allowing you to deal 3 damage to a confused enemy. It’s a bit situational but in the right deck it’s good cheap damage. We get one Justice ally here in Jack Flag. He’s a little slow and a little expensive but gosh darn-it if he doesn’t bring a smile to my face. I love being able to stick ammo counters on him and fire off damage. For Basic cards, we have Side Holster. It’s a fantastic upgrade that allows you to build out those weapon decks in Aggression, so now you don’t have to choose between Jarnbjorn and Godslayer. Plasma Pistol is a good option for ping damage, if you need it, but it does take up a Restricted slot. Crew Quarters is an extra healing option. It’s probably best for multiplayer, or for those decks where you’re flipping a lot. Finally, Star-Lord is the only 2-cost Basic Guardian. His attacks gain ranged and he has powerful stats, but you have to take an encounter card to play him. And for the other aspects, Leadership has “Welcome Aboard”. This is essentially a double resource for allies but only Guardians can play it. You CAN use it to set up another player in multiplayer though. Protection has Shake It Off. You can play this after a Guardian takes damage to give them a Tough status card. It’s a cheap way for Guardian’s to throw out some extra defense. Fusillade is the Aggression card. It allows you to deal 5 damage for exhausting a weapon upgrade. That’s some high damage for a decent cost.
- Release Month: September 2021 (Expected)
- Aspect: Justice
- Nemesis: Gamora
- Partial Card List
- Notable Cards:
- Reprints (? total):
- Hero Overview:
- Player Cards Overview:
- Release Month: October 2021 (Expected)
- Aspect: Leadership
- Nemesis: Living Laser
- Partial Card List
- Notable Cards:
- Reprints (? total):
- Hero Overview:
- Player Cards Overview:
- Release Month: December 2019
- Scenarios Included: Risky Business, Mutagen Formula
- Modular Sets Included: Goblin Gimmicks (Goblin Gliders and Pumpkin Bombs), A Mess of Things (Scorpion), Running Interference (Tombstone), and Power Drain (Electro)
- Full Card List
- Overview: This pack gives you a lot value and is probably the first expansion you should get aside from the Hero Pack(s) of your favorite hero and favorite aspect. The reason for that is it includes two scenarios, one of which is generally thought of as fairly easy (Risky Business) and another that can be one of the hardest scenarios in the game (Mutagen Formula). Additionally, it comes with four modular sets that can greatly enhance the variety in scenarios you already own.Despite being not too difficult, Risky Business involves an interesting dual-personality mechanic for the villain that differentiates it from other scenarios and so can be a good first or second scenario for a new player if Standard Rhino and his single-scheme scenario is too boring. The damage heroes receive from Norman flipping to Goblin (due to Criminal Enterprise/State of Madness) provides a decision on when to attack and for how much rather than just as-much-as-you-can-all-the-time which is the best approach for other scenarios.The more difficult Mutagen Formula features a full-time Green Goblin with the ability to deal extra encounter cards whenever he progresses to his next stage. This again forces the players to consider how to best time their attacks. Expert mode is a really tough test because each player will reveal 3 encounter cards in the very first villain phase due to the Green Goblin (II) When Revealed ability. The other focus of the scenario is minions. Most encounter cards either force you to draw a new minion, buff the minions’ stats, or do bad things based on the number of minions in play.The modular sets each have a central mechanic so that you can tailor your scenarios as you see fit to challenge certain aspects of your player deck. Goblin Gimmicks features cards that mostly enhance the villain, or possibly minion, unless a Hero spends an action and resources. This is where you’ll find Pumpkin Bombs and Goblin Gliders to make for thematic battles against Green Goblin (or weird battles against Rhino, if you’re in to that). A Mess of Things features Scorpion and is focused on extra attacks and stunning your hero. Heroes with exhaust abilities or dependency on their basic actions (like Ms. Marvel and She Hulk) will be tested by this set. Power Drain features Electro and causes you to discard cards from the encounter deck, which accelerates threat accumulation on the main scheme. This can be deadly in a scenario like Klaw or against any hero that takes time to set up or is weak at thwarting. Tombstone appears in the Running Interference set which focuses on making you waste your actions and resources or otherwise be subjected to some pretty bad effects. Notably, the resources required for these effects are Mental and Physical, so heroes like Iron Man and Captain Marvel that depend on Energy resources can struggle to remove these obstacles.
The Wrecking Crew
- Release Month: February 2020
- Scenarios Included: Wrecking Crew
- Modular Sets Included: None
- Full Card List
- Overview: The Wrecking Crew starts to show off how varied scenario design can eventually be. The gimmick here is that you are fighting against four villains at the same time, each with their own encounter deck, and there are rules and effects that determine which one is going to be punching you at any given time. There are no modulars in this expansion and the only way to alter the experience is to change the stage of the four villains, so it’s probably not an early buy for anyone hoping to expand their scenario options quickly. On the other hand, an advantage of this scenario is that it never has to be disassembled due to sharing cards with other scenarios so it is always ready to go.Each of the four Wrecking Crew members have their own specialty in terms of how they put pressure on the players. Wrecker puts out extra damage, encourages you to defend, and messes with your ability to plan for which villain is going to trigger when. Thunderball damages and stuns you and your allies and builds up threat quickly. Piledriver can remove your supports and upgrades, Retaliates, and can heal or otherwise block damage. Bulldozer forces discards from your hand and deck to remove your options and also deal more encounter cards. The community assessment of this scenario so far is that it’s somewhat solvable and lacks enough pressure to be a challenge. If you identify which villains’ threats you can suffer most easily and take out the villain who is most directly affecting your game plan, then you can usually cruise to victory for the remainder of the game. Solving this puzzle isn’t going to be super obvious for all players, so there is still a challenge here and a unique experience even if it does eventually lose some replayability.
The Once And Future Kang
- Release Month: October 2020
- Scenarios Included: The Once and Future Kang
- Modular Sets Included: Temporal, Anachronauts, The Master of Time
Full Card List
- Overview: This scenario pack contains just one rather large scenario. For the first time in the game, you have to defeat three villain stages in order to win the scenario. You will fight Kang I, one of four different Kang II’s, and then Kang III. There are alternate versions of all six villain cards meant for Expert play. In multiplayer, all players will be separated from each other and face their own unique version of Kang II, and will then join forces again to defeat Kang III and win the game. Notably, at the beginning of the final stage, every player MUST put their nemesis minion into play engaged with them. Overall, this is a fun scenario that features a few new wrinkles in scenario design, though it is perhaps not the best first purchase unless you have a large multiplayer group and the individual stage aspect sounds like something you’d enjoy. I appreciate the dynamic nature of the main scheme and villain stages and how creates the feeling of a narrative during the course of play. A primary theme of the scenario is the somewhat-new Obligation card type. Another first for the game, these Obligations are not hero-specific and are drawn from the encounter deck and stay in play with some negative effect until the player can fulfill the condition of removal. They mostly restrict your ability to do hero things until you flip back to Alter-Ego and discard a certain resource. The number of Obligations currently in play will also buff other encounter cards. It is nice to have a new card type to work with, and it must be noted that these Obligations cannot be canceled by any cards that specifically target Treacheries, even though sometimes they feel like Treacheries.In addition to the scenario, this pack comes with three modular sets. Temporal is a straight-forward, minion-focused set that contains – as you probably already know – a Tyrannosaurus Rex. The Anachronauts is another minion-focused set, but these minions are much beefier and feature some difficult abilities and surge-like boost effects that cause the drawing of additional boost cards. The Master of Time set which allows Kang to be a minion in any other scenario. The minion version of Kang has a new keyword: Villainous. This keyword means the minion gets a boost card when they activate just like the primary villain. This is very exciting as it provides a way to have villain team-ups and mini-bosses in future scenarios.
- Release Month: November 2021 (Expected)
- Scenarios Included: The Hood
- Modular Sets Included: Beasty Boys, Brothers Grimm, Crossfire’s Crew, Mister Hyde, Ransacked Armory, Sinister Syndicate, State of Emergency, Streets of Mayhem, Wrecking Crew, Standard II & Expert II (additional more difficult versions that can be used in place of the original Standard and Expert sets)
The Rise of Red Skull
- Release Month: September 2020
- Heroes Included: Hawkeye (Leadership) and Spider-Woman (Aggression/Justice)
- Scenarios Included: Crossbones, Absorbing Man, Taskmaster, Zola, and Red Skull
- Modular Sets Included: Hydra Patrol, Hydra Assault, Weapon Master, Experimental Weapons
- Full Card List and Details
- Notable Cards: Goliath, Sky Cycle, Team Training, Spider-Girl, Spider-Man, Clear The Area, Skilled Investigator, Earth’s Mightiest Heroes
- Reprints (21 total): Lead From The Front x2, The Power of Leadership x2, Avengers Tower, Interrogation Room x2, Heroic Intution x2, Combat Training x2, Tac Team x2, Energy/Genius/Strength x2
- Campaign Overview: If you’re familiar with FFG’s other co-operative LCGs, you should expect this campaign to be a lot more like the Lord of the Rings LCG Saga experience than any Arkham Horror LCG campaign. If you haven’t tried either of those products, what that means is that you’re mostly just playing the scenarios in a particular order with the same heroes, but there are no other restrictions on your deck building (meaning you can switch cards and even aspects). In campaign mode, the completion of each scenario may grant you with a bonus card to add to your deck, and/or add cards to the encounter deck or negatively affect the setup of future scenarios in the campaign. These additions are somewhat minor and, in my opinion, power up the player’s decks more than they increase the challenge of the scenarios. The other addition to campaign play, if you choose to play the “expert campaign,” is that your remaining hit points carry over from one scenario to the next, and that has the potential to affect how you play your last few turns, so you’re not setting yourself up for failure later. The story component of the campaign is very light, but centers around Red Skull trying to acquire one of the infinity stones. For an in-depth look at each scenario on its own as a standalone experience, look for a forthcoming article on this website to be linked here when it’s published. For now, it is hard to argue against purchasing this product for the scenarios since it nearly doubles what is available. Some of the included scenarios may be outclassed over time, but as of the time of this writing this one of the better value buys available for expanding your game play options.
- Hero Overviews: Hawkeye is a very fun hero to play, as his signature cards capture the theme of an arrow-slinging sharpshooter very well. The other thematic aspect of his design is that, unlike the super-powered members of the Avengers, Clint Barton is just a regular guy and therefore cannot take much punishment. Your primary deck building goal is likely going to be how to use the rest of his deck space to prevent incoming damage and attacks, unless you are teaming up with another hero who can do that for you. Once that protection is in place, Hawkeye is free to shoot as many arrows as possible and can have one of the highest damage ceilings currently available. Spider-Woman is nearly the polar opposite of Hawkeye, in that her deck building options are much wider, but the thematic focus of her design is much more vague. She is a double agent, so she can include cards from two different aspects. That ability doesn’t lend itself to feeling like you’re a secret agent, but it does mean the possible Spider-Woman decks are extremely varied. You may have Spider-Woman take a backseat to a suped-up ally, but you could also leverage cheap aspect cards and readying to turn Spider-Woman into an absolute monster. Having both heroes in the box is a plus in that most players will be satisfied with the style of at least one if not both.
- Player Card Overview: The only people that will likely disappointed with these player cards are Protection players, because that’s the only aspect without new cards in this release. Each other aspect gets some new cards worth looking at. Obviously, due to the theme, this box provides a lot of support to Leadership Avengers decks. The Leadership cards are skewed towards builds that prefer allies that stick around rather than quickly come in and out of play. This is explicitly true of Team Training and Ready for Action, but also Sky Cycle gets more value if the attached ally is in play for multiple turns. The allies all have either 3+ health or passive abilities such that you want them in play for more than a single turn, but Goliath gets a special shout out. He can provide a slightly scaled-back version of what the Vision ally can give you, but at a much lower investment of additional cards and resources. The best Aggression card is probably Spider-Girl, because all 2-cost allies are good, and she can give you a temporary reprieve from a problem minion not named Ronan. Press the Advantage is also interesting if you need cheap events or can count on the villain regularly being stunned or confused. For Justice (ha), Spider-Man is expensive, but can absolutely nuke a side scheme regardless of player count. Clear The Area is great for when For Justice is overkill, and Skilled Investigator can be very good against most scenarios as 0-cost drawing abilities are not to be under-estimated. Earth’s Mightiest Heroes seems like the kind of card that will be involved in a lot of future shenanigans.
Galaxy’s Most Wanted
- Release Month: April 2021
- Heroes Included: Rocket (Aggression) and Groot (Protection)
- Scenarios Included: Drang, The Collector (two scenarios), Nebula, Ronan the Accuser
- Modular Sets Included: Badoon Headhunter, Band of Badoon, Galactic Artifacts, Kree Militants, Menagerie Medley, Power Stone, Ship Command, Space Pirates
- Full Card List
- Notable Cards: Dauntless, Hard to Ignore, Starhawk, Hand Cannon, Bug, Deft Focus
- Reprints (20 total): The Power of Protection x2, Desperate Defense x3, Indomitable x2, Relentless Assault x2, Chase Them Down x2, Into the Fray x3, Energy/Genius/Strength x2
- Campaign Overview: Comparing this campaign to the previous/first campaign is inevitable, so let’s get that out of the way. The Rise of Red Skull is a walk in the park compared to the difficulty this campaign presents. From minion heavy modular sets to tough new keywords, stolen cards, and ruthless villains, the challenge here is like nothing before seen in Marvel Champions. I want to make that clear because I can’t really recommend the scenarios in this box for an early purchase. I don’t think I’d even recommend it as an intermediate purchase unless the player is heavily familiar with either the Lord of the Rings LCG or the Arkham Horror LCG as fans of those games will find the difficulty level feeling much more familiar. Does that mean this campaign is too hard? For a casual player who only plays with younger kids, that may be the case. Or perhaps they may want to try the Rookie mode until they become more familiar with things. To try to give you an idea, I would say that standard mode in this box is going to feel somewhere in-between normal Expert and difficult Expert. While Ronan will feel like playing some ridiculous level of Heroic. Ronan’s on another level altogether and is easily the toughest challenge players have faced so far. Now, if I didn’t scare you off, there’s a lot of fun to be had here. The structure of the campaign is very different from The Rise of Red Skull. This time players will be trying to gain Victory points by defeating minions/side schemes and/or achieve other feats (i.e. staying on Stage 1 of the main scheme) in order to earn Units at the end of each scenario. Players can then use those Units to purchase cards from a Market of 28 cards. This is important as those cards can really help you later in the game. Without giving anything away, the structure of the story here will feel very similar to the previous box, but I will say that there is a more natural progression from villain to villain which makes you feel more invested in the story. The addition of the Milano makes you feel like you’re on a space adventure with the Guardians. Also, the third scenario is easily one of my favorite scenarios ever and it’s very thematic. Overall, this is another tremendous value in a box, but if you aren’t ready for the challenge, hold off a while. On the flip side, if you’ve been itching for more of a challenge, this box is perfect for you.
- Hero Overviews: If you’re mainly looking to pick this box up for the heroes, you won’t be disappointed, as Rocket and Groot are some of the most fun heroes to play. They both offer unique mechanics we haven’t really seen before. Rocket is a better version of Thor. He’s built for high attack Aggression style play. Rocket has several weapons that come with charge counters. He wants to get those out and start targeting everything he can. Anytime he deals excessive damage, he draws an extra card and when you’re done with those weapons you can go to alter-ego to discard them and get some extra cards. Because he doesn’t specifically rely on minions to work, he’s more consistent than Thor is. He’ll work better with minions when he can spam his hero ability, but he can still get the job done without them. His main weakness is his squishiness. He only has a couple of cards meant to help with survivability, like Schadenfreude. Unfortunately, the Groot ally is not part of his signature cards, but you may want to bring him along whenever you can. The Groot hero, on the other hand, is hard to kill. Groot wants to build Growth Counters (this is mostly done in alter-ego form, but there are a couple of other options) which act as an inherent defense from damage. As a forced response, anytime you would take damage, you lose a growth counter for each damage you would be dealt. The hardest thing about Groot is managing those counters to use him effectively as many of his hero cards need those to be effective. The “I am Groot” and “I. AM. GROOT!” cards specifically need them as those cards are more efficient the more Groot has on him. But he also has a ton of upgrades that allow you to spend X counters to increase attack/thwart/defense or even to ready him. He might be the best hero for Protection-Defense yet because he can absorb so much damage for your team. He also synergizes very well with the great new Protection cards in his deck which means he can get a lot done while he’s defending.
- Player Card Overview: Groot comes with Protection cards. Dauntless gives you retaliate as long as your hit points are at their starting level or higher. Retaliate is always good but especially for Protection. It pairs well with Electrostatic Armor. You’re probably going to want an Endurance in your deck if you’re not using Groot. Hard to Ignore is even better, it allows more threat removal for Protection and all you have to do is defend and not take damage. Also, it’s stackable! Fighting Fit pairs well with Dauntless. For the same condition, you can hit the villain for 5 for a cost of 2. Just make sure you keep your health up or it’s 2 for 2 and not worth it. Starhawk for Protection and Bug for Aggression are both assets to their aspects. They are both 2 cost allies that can stick around for a long time. This is particularly helpful in the Infiltrate the Museum Scenario. For the other Aggression cards that come with Rocket Raccoon, there’s Looking for Trouble is a slightly worse version of Defender of the Nine Realms. It can be very good in most Aggression decks. Follow Through is fantastic with a deck that has lots of overkill because like Hard to Ignore, it’s stackable! Hand Cannon boosts your attack and grants overkill. I can see Thor and the Hulks (Her & Him) really benefitting from these cards. For basic cards this time around, Booster Boots only works for Guardians but allows you to prevent 1 damage if you discard a card. This is max 1 per player; it’s very situational. Deft Focus is awesome for any hero with a lot of Superpower traited cards in their deck. It won’t work for everyone, but it’s a very cheap resource card that’ll see a lot of play in the near future. The Team-Up card for Rocket and Groot is Flora and Fauna, it’s simple but very effective. Lastly, we have the Rocket and Groot basic allies. I may be in the minority, but I really liked the signature allies as part of the hero’s signature cards and I don’t feel it affected that much of the gameplay with other players (after all those heroes are often built with the same mechanics in mind). And it doesn’t help here that both Rocket and Groot feel like they were made to be a part of each other’s decks as they both play to the other’s weakness. Anyway, it’s not a big deal, just a little nitpicking. These are both great allies. Rocket can blast through minions, but also provides a good thwarting option for the Groot hero. And Groot has 6 health on a 3-cost ally and he heals himself. That’s crazy. He’s a good blocker for the Rocket hero. They can only be played by Guardians though, so that does restrict their usefulness with most heroes.
- Release Month: August 2021
- Heroes Included: Adam Warlock (All Aspects) and Spectrum (Leadership)
- Scenarios Included: Ebony Maw, Tower Defense (Proxima Midnight & Corvus Glaive), Thanos, 2 other rumored scenarios
- Modular Sets Included: Infinity Gauntlet
- Partial Card List
- Notable Cards:
- Reprints (?? total):
- Campaign Overview:
- Hero Overviews:
- Player Card Overview:
Kree Fanatic “Print & Play” Modular Set
- Release Month: August 2020
Available as a print-and-play from the FFG Marvel Champions product page under Player Resources here, or click the name of the modular set above to go straight to the PDF. Also available in multiple printing formats at Hall of Heroes.
- Overview: This was a surprise release from FFG just before what would have been the weekend of Gen Con 2020, which was canceled. This is so far the biggest minion in the game by virtue of 3 SCH, 3 ATK, and hit points that scale with the number of players (not to mention Toughness and immunity to being stunned). Every card in the modular set is going to have a big impact whether it comes out as a boost card or revealed encounter card. Ronan, his scheme, and attachment all get put into play if they turn up as boost cards. The rest all have 3 boost icons. The theme of the modular set is punishing you for defending with allies, as many of the cards have an additional effect when a character is defeated or grant the overkill keyword. Personally, I think this a welcome addition to the game as decks that can churn out lots of expendable allies can have too easy of a time in the villain phase. If you have a Leadership deck that is stomping most scenarios, I suggest throwing this modular set into the encounter deck and seeing how it goes. In multiplayer this is probably the toughest modular set in the game now. In solo there’s probably still some discussion about this set versus Legions of Hydra and The Doomsday Chair.