To close out the year gaming wise, I threw down against Wyrm and then Tomsey in Marvel Universe Miniatures Game. I didn’t take detailed notes, so will share some thoughts on each game rather than full write-ups.
Uncanny X-Men vs Brotherhood of Evil Mutants
Wyrm was keen to get Magneto and co to the table, so had a team consisting of Magneto, Emma Frost, Sabretooth, Toad, Pyro and Lady Mastermind with the Brotherhood team card (everyone gets +1 agility). I was originally going to run my street level team, but thought it’d be better thematically to roll out an X-Men team, so had Cyclops, Jean Grey, Wolverine, Colossus, Emma Frost and Rogue with the team card (+1 Stamina to all). I’d initially considered leaving Wolverine at home and replacing him with Gambit to play around Magneto somewhat, but Wyrm convinced me that the classic Wolverine vs Sabretooth fight was too good to pass up.
We were playing on Wyrm’s sentinel apocalypse table which is taking shape and looking very cool. The Knights of Dice buildings are proving to be very well suited to the game, with the multiple levels giving some interesting scope to flyers and wallcawlers. We haven’t used it much yet, but the roofs and upper levels are detachable, with internal rooms to play in also.
We played the Siege mission from the MUMG FAQ and mission pack which was a first for us. It’s much higher scoring than other missions and has some interesting strategic and tactical considerations around placement of your bases, whether you commit characters to repairing and, as always, how much you beat on the other team.
The game started out very close, with my early lead on victory points offset by Wyrm’s incapacitation of Wolverine and Emma Frost relatively early on. I essentially focussed Cyclops on raining down energy beams on Wyrm’s nearby base for the game, and with Jean Grey also lending some fire support I was able to take it down on turn four or five pulling ahead enough to see me through.
The Brotherhood team seems to function really well together, with Magneto, Emma Frost and Lady Mastermind being strong support characters that can lay in buffs and debuffs. Lady Mastermind’s Power Transference ability coupled with Magneto’s leadership boost seemed to work well, but requires careful positioning each round. Magneto’s Metal Shield ability is a better version of Captain America’s Shield Block and saw me caught out a few times as I wasn’t able to trigger it prior to laying down a massive hit from another character.
Uncanny X-Men vs Kryptonian Might
Tomsey was keen to get his new Kryptonians to the table, and so ran Zod, his two offsiders and Catwoman. This technically came in at 51 levels, but it was one over or five under and coupled with a team of only four models we figured it would balance out. I ran the X-Men again as I had them out and had just refreshed on the rules through my game with Wyrm. We chose to play the Energy Pillars scenario, which is our goto first scenario, as it highlights the importance of balancing hitting the opponent with playing the mission given the small amount of victory points on offer.
After the game, it definitely felt like there’s been some serious power creep in the DCU models, with skills and stats heaped on the Kryptonians (they are costly models though, at 15+ levels each). The ability of Zod to dish out something in the order of 11 damage a turn without breaking a sweat also felt significantly more powerful than most things in the Marvel Universe. They also possess extremely good mobility with Fly on Zod and his two soldiers having a 12” Super Jump each turn. One weakness I discovered was mental attacks, which I used Jean Grey to exploit early on before she got soundly shut down by one of the Kryptonian soldiers. I was probably lucky I stuck with X-Men in that sense, as I would’ve struggled to hurt the Kryptonians with another team.
That said, I made a couple of critical mistakes over the course of the game, at least one of which directly cost a victory point, and some which would have slowed Tomsey down and potentially reduced his scoring. Given my team didn’t have much in the way of hitting power against the Kryptonians, I should’ve much more aggressively focussed on delaying tactics (throws, debuffs from Emma Frost, etc) and the scenario objectives.
Regardless, it was good to get something new to the table, and our lists will adapt with one eye on balancing various attack types to ensure we have answers to some of the DCU models if they become a regular feature. I’ve also just bought the three new magic users (John Constantine, Jason Blood/Etrigan, and Zatana) so looking forward to getting them painted and on the table as well.