'Is he Man or Monster?' SMASH! Bruce Banner's Alter-ego, the Hulk is one of Earth's mightiest defenders and arguably the strongest avenger. He hits Marvel Crisis Protocol in the first wave of expansions. Whether it be smashing buildings or your opponent's characters, the Hulk will emphatically smash whatever is in his way!
It must be remembered that before his transformation into the raging green-skinned beast, Bruce Banner was a soft-spoken Scientist. So, for you Marvel fans, Asmodee Games focus on the traditional comic book approach for the hero's origin. The gamma bomb that birthed Hulk was a direct result of Bruce saving his friend Rick Jones which has been implemented in the game as a mission.
While being hated and feared for most of his existence, Hulk uses his incredible strength for good and you feel like he can tangle with any enemy, even one mighty as Thanos. In the Miniatures game of Marvel Crisis Protocol, Hulk's massive threat and size dominate the battlefield as he helps the Avengers achieve their mission objective!
So, What's In The Box?
The Hulk expansion box for Marvel Crisis Protocol is one of the few stand-alone miniature packs in the range. The miniature itself comes unassembled and unpainted though I'm equally pleased with both the fantastic quality and size of the plastic that is easy to build. Hulk himself towers above most other characters in-game and even a whole comic book stands as shown below!
So, you really get the feeling that in a skirmish setting, he can be an unstoppable force. Not to be overlooked is the highly detailed 65MM base, which I couldn't help but think is one of the most hobby friendly elements of Marvel Crisis Protocol. Equally detailed and bright, you also receive the Hulk's coloured character stat card, three Team Tactics cards and the Secure mission: Gamma Wave sweeps across Town.
The counters for the mission are three nuclear radiation hazard warnings and the rest being either power, damage and affiliated Avengers tokens furthermore add to your Marvel Crisis Protocol expansion.
So not only do you add Hulk to your roster and Squad in game, the mission adds further re-playability even when you're not using the big guy! While it's only one miniature, the extra components really feel like you're getting a packed box.
'Don't Make Me Angry!'
So, in Marvel Crisis Protocol, how does Hulk play? As said in the core box review, you build squads equal to the threat of the mission objective. Conversely, while Hulk may be the strongest Avenger, which no doubt many Thor fans could contest. He is also the most expensive avenger at SIX threat! On the same price tag with Thanos means that you really have to get your smashing worth out of the big green avenger!
This means at smaller missions Hulk can either single-handedly destroy your opponent's squad or lose you the game if taken out. This comes to my biggest disappointment with Hulk! He's surprisingly easy to KO! Despite having the largest hit points of twenty, his defences to physical and energy-based attacks are so low at his cost, you can watch him melt to basic attacks!
This coupled with his inability to be dazed and flip over like normally, means once he's taken twenty damage...Hulk is out! Think of him as a Glass cannon and use Hulk to dish out as much damage possible!
However, there can be no doubt that as you field Hulk in a mission, you feel his rage and power in Marvel Crisis Protocol! With special rules like Gamma leap and Inner rage, Hulk can use his superpowers more often. Along with 'Don't make me angry' which makes him stronger the more your opponent hurts Hulk, his attacks become STRONGER!
You could feasibly end up rolling 14 Dice in one 'Hulk Smash' attack! Equally, his regular strike attack and Thunderclap Beam attack become so much more deadly! For anyone wanting to smash your puny opponents and friends, Hulk is your Guy. In one of my first games of Crisis Protocol, Hulk bullied Ultron with his high damage output. Does anyone for spare scrap metal?
The Hulk's Cards
The three-team Tactics cards add a little bit of spice to an already fun if deadly character. Want to poke or make sly comments to Make Hulk even angrier? 'Anger Management' allows one of your Avengers such as witty Iron Man damage Hulk to make his attacks cause more damage! Or do you want to throw Captain America into a fight?
'Gamma Launch' let's Hulk throw an ally up to range five away! It really does feel like you're in the movie, Crisis protocol capturing the essence of Hulk as an Avenger! Finally, 'Seeing Red' is an unaffiliated tactics card that allows one of your characters to enact revenge seeing a team-mate be dazed or KO'd. Especially cinematic if you lose a key hero or villain to your dastardly opponent!
Finally, the mission card 'Gamma wave sweeps across Town' pits you and your opponent to secure three objectives placed vertically on the battlefield! Any character not in range of a Gamma shelter will suffer radiation damage. So be warned at leaving your characters out on their own as the inevitable skirmish in the centre becomes a mosh pit!
At only a 15 Threat rating this mission targets an even smaller squad but no less the tactical fun!
'The Sun's Going Down Big Fella'
In conclusion, I've thoroughly enjoyed endorsing this wave one expansion pack of Marvel Crisis Protocol's Hulk. Both the hobby and game aspects have high levels of detail and flavour that make me feel joy when running Hulk! While assembly and painting are required, don't let it put you off. The bright green mean machine will stand out in your roster as a centrepiece Avenger.
With his only rival in size being Hulk-buster or She-Hulk. That being said there are a few issues with the expansion. Less variety to expand your Avengers roster due to being one miniature. Hulk's large threat value compounds as you feel forced to include him because of the price tag.
Finally, he feels too soft and squishy to be the near-immortal Hulk. For example, in all my games played thus far, he's been defeated by low dice attacks. Having said all that, Asmodee has since released an updated stat card that unfortunately makes your highly detailed character card void.
It is FREE to download though, so players should find a more Incredible Hulk! Assemble your Avengers and smash your opponent to your Hearts' desire. If Avengers aren't your thing, there are plenty more villains or heroes in Marvel Crisis Protocol! Till next time.