Marvel Legendary has a lot of expansions, there are nine releases to date and as such we have a lot of heroes to play with, as well as a ton of masterminds to defeat. However there are a few of each that really stand out for me.
These are cards that really bring the characters themes and powers to the game as well as having some cool mechanics.
5. Carnage - The Carnage symbiote is annoying, rather than a particularly strong mastermind especially when combined with his villain group, but I do love him. The Feast mechanic is Carnage's weapon of choice, allowing him and his friends to chew through the player's deck. Carnage may also trigger depending on what card is KO'd, enabling him to wound players. He is only strength nine but that could be strong enough if he has already chewed through some of your best cards.
4. Zombie Green Goblin - Zombie Green Goblin is a great mastermind! Like many of the zombie cards he has the rise of the living dead ability, meaning he could potentially raise an army from player's victory pools, which I'm sure I don't need to mention is rather inconvenient. It's his other ability that makes him rather fiendish. Green Goblin has the ability to KO any heroes that cost seven or more in the hq, that's not just one but any that happen to be in there, depriving you of your best cards. To make matters worse for everyone, of these in the KO pile he gains an additional one strength, due to the low number of cost sevens he is unlikely to become too strong through this, but since he starts on 11 he is certainly going to require a few good combos.
3. Apocalypse - This chap needs no introduction and neither do his four horsemen who he always leads. Apocalypse is not only a strength 12 mastermind who can make you place all of your cost one heroes on top of your deck, but he also comes with his own victory condition. If one of each of his four horsemen escape he wins! Oh and by the way each of these horsemen are at plus two strength, making Apocalypse one mean mastermind, and before the release of the last two he was the toughest in the game.
2. Thanos - I was not particularly blown away by the Guardians of The Galaxy expansion but Thanos was certainly worth it. A mastermind that starts at strength 24, sure if you control infinity gems he becomes weaker, which was a great thematic inclusion but I mean strength 24? That is going to require some serious set up. Thanos can be defeated but to do this whilst stopping the scheme and keeping the city clear is going to prove a challenge.
1. Galactus - It seems fitting that the top three spots belong to the real big boys of the Marvel universe, and they don't get much bigger than Galactus. Galactus is a strength 20 mastermind who also happens to lead one of the toughest villain groups around, and comes with his own victory condition. This victory condition is to destroy the city. Now you may be asking how does he destroy the city? Well any time you draw a master strike he destroys the city space closest to him, so not only will he achieve his own goal but he also makes it easier for villains and henchmen to escape - making defeat all the more certain. As such, Galactus certainly deserves the title as the toughest mastermind in Legendary.
5. Nightcrawler - Nightcrawler was the face of the teleport keyword and man what a keyword it is. This allows you to set aside the card for the next turn, meaning you could really set up some create combinations. However although almost all his cards contain teleport he is rather limited by his rather average stats, meaning Nightcrawler gets the fifth spot.
4. Nick Fury - The only normal guy making the list. Nick Fury is a great hero, allowing you to gain more Maria Hill cards as essentially a free action, as well as his awesome rare card enabling you to defeat a villain or mastermind for free, providing you have KO'd enough shield heroes. He also works with more cards now since we have had the release of Eliza Bloodstone, adding to Nick's versatility.
3. Cyclops - So Cyclops is one of my favourite comic book characters but he also has some great skills in Marvel Legendary, befitting of his rank as leader. Cyclops' low tier cards allow you to get in some early recruitment and strength at the cost of only two or three respectively. This does come with the drawback of having to discard a card but Cyclops has already thought of that as when combined with his six cost card, you can get it back meaning you can form some great early combos here. His rare card triggers off playing other X-Men cards so it has the potential to be massive and with a strength of six he is certainly going to take down some villains providing you have built your deck correctly.
2. Time Travelling Jean Grey - Oh Jean Grey you were ok in Dark City but this version is the bomb! Her rare card recruits a hero for free, as well as giving five attack, and her other cards allow her to weaken villains across the city and move them around. Little Jean is truly a master of manipulating the board, giving you an extra turn by delaying the escape of villains and getting you the heroes you need for free.
1. Forge - You may be surprised to find that a minor character such as Forge tops this list but you shouldn't underestimate him. Having all of his cards in the tech category, he can help to trigger a number of abilities for other characters as well as himself allowing him to draw more cards, which is always an essential in deck building games, and give villains a negative modifier if they are in the correct location. It is his rare card that gets Forge to the number one stop however as he can defeat a mastermind for free, that's right for free! All you need is two tech symbols, which is easy to do since all of this cards possess them, and that's one mastermind tactic out of the equation. He also has five strength, making Forge the undeniable top of this list.
Well that's my top five from the vast selection of heroes and masterminds found in Marvel Legendary, there are plenty of fantastic ones to choose from but these were the ones that resonated best with me.
Good luck with saving your city.