Marvel Champions is a Living Card Game (LCG) from Fantasy Flight. That means that it will continue to grow and expand roughly monthly with new content. The good news is that this content is not random booster packs but set cards, like hero expansion decks, new schemes and villains.
The game play is cooperative and based around hand management. Each hero has some cards that are specific to them and then you either use a prebuilt deck, or take cards from two other decks, a general deck with generic cards and one of four attribute decks. These are leadership, justice, aggression and protection. Helpfully the deck names are an accurate description of what the cards will do! Cards are super important as every card you play must be paid for by other cards.
It is fun to fit characters with their best themed deck, Captain America with a leadership build for example, but also fun to mix it up a little too, especially given the challenge of the villains. Villains come into play with their own decks, with a main scheme you must stop, minions, side schemes and more. Interestingly each hero can be in their heroic form or their alter ego and the villain reacts differently to each. Villains will directly attack heroes, but if the hero is in their alter ego form then the villain doesn’t know who they are and will therefore continue with their evil scheme.
The game is thematic and fun to play providing a good challenge for players and meaningful team-ups.
The Ms. Marvel deck adds the flexible hero to your roster. As well as Ms. Marvels pre-built deck you get 12 extra cards for your Aggression, Justice, Leadership and Basic decks. Ms. Marvel is a very different prospect in the world of Marvel Champions. Starting out as relatively weak it becomes clear that she is a jack of all trades, master of none sort of character probably best paired with some other heroes who can close out battles well.
This is not a bad thing of course and it’s great to see a less known character get a turn in the spotlight.
Player Count: 1-4
Time: 45-90 Minutes
The Story So Far
Marvel Champions is a one to four player super hero game where players take on the role of one of five Marvel heroes to battle it out against one of three villains. Play as Captain Marvel, Spiderman, She Hulk, Black Panther or Iron Man and face off against Rhino, Klaw or Ultron. Each Hero is represented by a deck of cards made up of basic cards, hero specific cards and aspect cards (one of leadership, justice, aggression and protection). Each Villain is also represented by a deck of cards comprising villain specific cards, basic villain cards and a modular encounter set.
During a players turn they will play cards. (paying for the cost by discarding other cards from their hand). Then, activate cards and perform a number of actions all in attempt to defeat the “big bad” and to thwart his schemes. Players can also switch from alter ego to hero form once per turn. And activate their characters special ability as well the basic recovery, attack or defend actions. Once a player has performed all of their actions it passes to the next player. They repeat the process until all players have performed their actions.
Next is the villain phase. During the villain phase threat is added on the main scheme based on player count. Then the villain will either attack (if you are in hero form) or scheme (if you are in alter ego form). When they attack or scheme a boost card is revealed from the encounter deck and added to the Villian’s base attack/scheme value. Each player (in turn order) is then dealt an encounter card. Any minions in play will also attack or scheme.
Players will need to manage the amount of threat tokens that is placed on a scheme as if a certain quantity is reached the scheme advances to the next stage and eventually the Villain will win by completing his scheme. In addition to the threat/schemes players will also have to take out minions and deal damage to the Villain to reduce his health to zero and win the game.
Marvel Champions is a living card game (LCG) and as such the publisher Fantasy Flight Games (FFG) are supporting the game with new Hero & Villain packs to further expand the game, the combinations and replayability. Check out a full review & final thoughts of the core game here.
Ms. Marvel Hero Pack
One of these new packs is Ms. Marvel Hero pack which I will talk about in more detail here.
Kamala Kahn just wants what any other teenager wants - a simple life. But after emerging from a Terrigen Mist covering New Jersey she discovers she can bend and morph her body. Inspired by Captain Marvel she takes on the role of Ms. Marvel as a teenage crime fighter.
The Ms. Marvel hero pack is a new playable character that can be added in to the Marvel Champions base game. Straight out of the pack is a pre-constructed deck with 15 hero cards, 14 leadership aspect cards and 11 basic cards. As with the other Heroes Ms. Marvel comes with her own obligation and nemesis set. The pack also contains three identical additional cards for the other aspects in the game as well as three identical basic cards.
Ms. Marvel feels like a very flexible deck. There are some interesting cards in this deck which in turn generate some interesting moments in gameplay. Wiggle Room is a 0 cost event that prevents three damage and gives the player a card draw. There are a number of event cards that allow Ms. Marvel to attack or thwart. A selection of the upgrade cards combo off these events to increase the power of the played card.
Ms. Marvel is not alone however, she has a number of support characters to help her out. A lot of these characters provide support when she is in alter-ego form giving the players a more dynamic feeling character. This is the way that this deck feels different. Ms. Marvel feels like she needs to rely on her support characters a lot more than other Heroes. The Ms. Marvel deck also comes with a new ally for the basic cards (Lockjaw) and protection aspect (Nova).
As with the other packs the deck feels thematic and plays differently to the other hero packs. Ms. Marvel is not a personal favourite of mine but I have not extensively explored deck building and other aspects with her. The fact that she feels different excites me to investigate more possibilities with her deck. It is a deck that I am very interested in playing with though and I want to learn how to more effectively play with Ms. Marvel. Playing with her solo feels challenging and I look forward to swapping in a different aspect to see how that affects her play style. Playing with her and another character could offer some very interesting combos and gameplay interaction with other Heroes.
Another interesting addition for the Marvel Champions core game and one that I would still recommend picking up.