Marvel Crisis Protocol

Marvel Crisis Protocol video battle report: Criminal Syndicate vs S.H.I.E.L.D

Here is the second of the Marvel Crisis Protocol games recorded by Allan for his excellent YouTube channel, Midlife Crisis Protocol, back in December 2022. This one I’m continuing to play Criminal Syndicate and he’s using a fairly brawling style of S.H.I.E.L.D roster. As ever, all credit for the video goes to Allan.

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Marvel Crisis Protocol video battle report: Criminal Syndicate vs Web Warriors

This is another Marvel Crisis Protocol battle report from Allan’s Midlife Crisis Protocol YouTube channel. This one features the classic match-up of Spider-Man vs Kingpin, admittedly with a few unexpected allies. As ever, all credit to Allan for doing all the work related to recording, editing and publishing the video; my only contribution is to show up and have a fun game with him. The game itself was played in Dec2022 in case anyone is wondering why I’ve not moved onto Brotherhood yet.

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Marvel Crisis Protocol tournament report: MCP Monthly Mayhem 22Jan2023

I was lucky enough to be able to travel to another Marvel Crisis Protocol tournament this weekend. Allan kindly drove us both down the A1 to Protech Games in Stockton where it seems that the MCP scene has really taken off lately, with almost double the number of players as the last time that we visited. Will, one of the locals, has been hard at work creating some truly beautiful boards to play on that (as usual) my photos completely fail to show nicely.

Characters: (11)
—Kingpin (Wilson Fisk) Threat: 4
Black Cat (Felica Hardy) Threat: 3
Bullseye (Benjamin Poindexter) Threat: 2
Hood (Parker Robbins) Threat: 3
Mysterio (Quentin Beck) Threat: 3
Ant-Man (Scott Lang) Threat: 3
Lizard (Curtis Connors) Threat: 3
—Crimson Dynamo (Dimitri Bukharin) Threat: 4
—Shadowland Daredevil (Matt Murdock) Threat: 4
Hand Ninjas () Threat: 0
Winter Soldier (James “Bucky” Barnes) Threat: 3

Tactics: (10)
All According To Plan
Shadow Organization
Hood’s Gang
The Grand Illusion
Monkey Brain Is Lizard Home
Indomitable
Patch Up
Mission Objective
Marked for Death
Cruelty

Secure Crisis: (3)
Super-Powered Scoundrels Form Sinister Syndicate! (Threat: 20)
Gamma Wave Sweeps Across Midwest (Threat: 15)
Intrusions Open Across City as Seals Collapse (Threat: 19)

Extract Crisis: (3)
Deadly Legacy Virus Cured? (Threat: 19)
Research Station Attacked! (Threat: 15)
Struggle for the Cube Continues (Threat: 17)

This is the last hurrah for the current iteration of my Criminal Syndicate roster that I’ve been playing. I removed MODOK from the list and replaced him initially with Doctor Voodoo, but then decided to substitute Winter Soldier for some fun times with Daredevil’s leadership. Following my terrible play last week on the Extremis 3.0 crisis, I also swapped that out for Intrusions Open on the basis that it would be less spread out and stop my slow, short ranged characters (I’m looking at you here, Kingpin!) from getting isolated away from the action.

Game 1: Lee playing Spider-Foes

I was really happy to be drawn with Lee in my first game; I’ve met him at a few previous events and he’s a lovely chap but we’ve never played yet. He was also giving me a nice advantage by starting the day mildly hungover which was very kind of him. I won priority and picked my Secures, and Lee had no choice but to choose 19 threat. My plan here was to sit on the Portals and score points while not allowing myself to go too far behind on the Extraction. Black Cat got the nod as she could potentially steal the Virus tokens and, if the opportunity arose, take them all and score me the points bonus for the full set; I took Mission Objective for the same reason. The rest of my team was chosen to keep up sufficiently on attrition that I could hope to stay in the game for the Secures for long enough to score it out.

Extraction: Deadly Legacy Virus Cured?
Secure: Intrusions Open Across City As Seals Collapse
Threat: 19
My team: Kingpin, Black Cat, Bullseye, Hood, Mysterio, Crimson Dynamo
My cards: All According To Plan, Indomitable, Mission Objective, Patch Up, The Grand Illusion
Lee’s team: Green Goblin, Bullseye, Doctor Octopus, Rhino, Hulk
Lee’s cards: Neogenetic Recombinator, Sacrifice, Sinister Traps, This Is A Robbery, Well Laid Plans

Round 1: Well, that’s quite a beefy team across the table from me. Lee puts down his Sinister Trap on the left. My plan for turn one is to collect the centre token and sit on the central and right points. As I will have the last activation I can see what happens on the left before committing Black Cat to the possibility of getting hit by the Trap over there. Mysterio starts us off by floating into the middle and picking up the Virus token. To my huge surprise Lee goes with Doctor Octopus who gently tickles Mysterio and doesn’t generate enough power to throw him, so Bullseye takes advantage and collects the token on the right. Lee’s Bullseye comes in to contest on the right and Kingpin takes the centre. Hood and Hulk respectively attack them for minimal effect, while Crimson Dynamo applies Shock to Green Goblin and Doctor Octopus which ought to make them a bit more manageable. Rhino decides that he doesn’t fancy the trap on the left and goes central so Black Cat just takes the damage (three) from the Trap and collects the last token on that side – 2 VPs here is well worth a bit of damage on her. The score goes to 6 – 0 to me.

Round 2: I think that as long as I’m careful about incoming damage I can hold all three Secures so my plan here must be just to keep picking away at the Spider-Foes and try not to drop all of the Virus tokens. Hulk gets us started by dazing Mysterio; he easily generates enough power to ignore Mysterio’s nonsense. I do make a mistake not using Mission Objective to hold onto the token though, so instead Hulk ends up getting it. Hood dazes Lee’s Bullseye on the right and Green Goblin puts a little damage into Crimson Dynamo along with a load of annoying conditions. In return, Dynamo dazes both Green Goblin and Doctor Octopus and shocks Rhino. Rhino uses his hilarious Mobility to daze Black Cat (not too hard, even with Shock) but doesn’t sit on that side of the board and instead uses the Portal to return to the centre to punch Dynamo. Bullseye teleports to the left Portal and Kingpin pokes Hulk a little. The score is 9 – 2 to me.

Round 3: I use All According To Plan so I can hope to capitalise on some of the good damage I did last turn. My team are quite vulnerable here as they’ve taken a bit of a pasting whereas most of Lee’s team are flush with power after they dazed last turn, so I’m going to try to stem the tide a bit and hopefully KO at least one of Lee’s characters. Mysterio pays for The Grand Illusion since almost all of Lee’s team are clustered in a big ball in the middle. Crimson Dynamo lets fly with some Beam attacks – Green Goblin passes one to Hulk with Sacrifice (which does at least give Hulk Shock) and Rhino uses Aggressive to get himself out of the line for the second beam. Green Goblin and Doctor Octopus pay for Well Laid Plans to get Bullseye to drop the last token I had. Rhino uses some really cool placement tricks to nearly KO Black Cat, collects the fallen token, then moves back to the centre and plays Neogenetic Recombinator to move some of his damage onto Doctor Octopus. Mysterio moves Hulk away (I know that he can just Gamma Leap back but it messes with his power economy a little) and then rolls like a champion to KO Doctor Octopus, finally paying to Patch Up Crimson Dynamo. Green Goblin finishes off Black Cat, dazes my Bullseye with a Glider Ram and comes back into the middle to hurt Mysterio. Hood can’t quite finish Lee’s Bullseye as he wisely plays Parting Shot to get out of range. Hulk comes back in to fight Kingpin but achieves little as Crimson Dynamo has more than enough power to pay for Disruption Field repeatedly, plus Hulk also had to contend with The Grand Illusion. However, he does do enough to bring Kingpin down into range for Bullseye to daze him before he activates with a decent roll, which he does. The score goes to 10 -6 to me; even though that felt like quite a beating I’m still in a good position here as only Hulk and Rhino are really in a position to affect the game state from here.

Round 4: At least Kingpin getting dazed allowed me to keep Priority! I think that I can take out Green Goblin and maybe daze Rhino here, while Bullseye is certainly always a possible victim. Crimson Dynamo gets us started by KOing Green Goblin and leaving Rhino on one wound. Hulk Gamma Leaps over to Crimson Dynamo and lays into him but I have more that enough power to blunt this with Disruption Field and I pay for Indomitable to avoid the throw. I think that Lee would have been better using Rhino first here. Bullseye uses I Never Miss to daze Rhino but the timing on Hit And Run means that there is no window to pick up the fallen tokens before retreating back to the left Portal. Lee’s Bullseye casually KOs mine, which I didn’t really see coming even though Bullseye is extremely easy to damage. Mysterio moves Hulk away from the action and Hood uses the Portal and collect the tokens dropped by Rhino earlier. The score does to 15 – 7 in my favour, though it looks like in all the excitement I forgot to take a picture.

Round 5: This is basically over as I don’t think that Lee has any way to stop me scoring at least one VP, so here but we’re definitely going to play it out and see where the scores land. Rhino plays This Is A Robbery to throw Hood into the only remaining item on that side of the board – his own teammate Bullseye! To add insult to injury Bullseye dodges all of the damage when even one wound would have finished him off; Rhino collects the Virus tokens. Crimson Dynamo attacks him in return and he uses Aggressive to move back toward the centre where Mysterio rolls all successes on a Tricks And Traps to KO the big chap. Hulk moves to the middle and Mysterio floats over and collects those fallen tokens; the score goes to 19 – 9.

Playing Lee was as much fun as I thought it would be, he’s such a lovely man to share a game with. I made some errors here; notably I should have actually remembered to use Mission Objective or just picked Hood’s Gang like I usually do. There was a move in turn 2 or 3 where I could probably have gotten all three tokens onto Black Cat but she’d have been left sitting next to an unactivated Hulk so I didn’t bother; in retrospect I might have been better to ‘allow’ Hulk to KO himself with the tokens as those 6 points would have been enough to end the game and it would have given me an insurmountable advantage on the Secures. This is one more way where the change in Crises from last year has really changed the game for the better, allowing more interesting interactive choices to be made.

Game 2: Mike playing Criminal Syndicate

For the second game I was drawn against Mike who also had Criminal Syndicate. Since he only had Kingpin I decided to try out Shadowland Daredevil for the first time as leader (probably this was a mistake!) since I don’t really like mirror matches in general and specifically a Kingpin mirror would probably be the dullest and most passive game imaginable. Mike won Priority and picks Secures, though our cards are not particularly different; I choose the lower threat. Winter Soldier gets the nod this time as his Rapid Fire (along with Hood’s) seems to make him a good fit for Daredevil’s leadership.

Extraction: Struggle For The Cube Continues
Secure: Superpowered Scoundrels Form Sinister Syndicate
Threat: 17
My team: Shadowland Daredevil, Hood, Mysterio, Crimson Dynamo, Winter Soldier
My cards: All According To Plan, Indomitable, Hood’s Gang, Patch Up, The Grand Illusion
Mike’s team: Kingpin, Black Cat, Bullseye, Hood, Lizard, Toad
Mike’s cards: Brace For Impact, Indomitable, Mission Objective, Warpath, X-Ceptional Healing

Round 1: I imagine that Mike is going to take a lead in the first couple of turns and then hopefully I can get enough damage done that the attritions starts to go my way before he scores this out. It’s even worse as Mike has Priority so he’s definitely going to be able to take the central Cube. Predictably, Toad comes in and nabs the Cube in the middle while keeping safely back. Both Hood take up position in their corners on the right and Lizard ends up in the middle with Mysterio. Winter Soldier and Crimson Dynamo make some attacks into Lizard but after some good defence rolls (plus the cover and his reducer, of course) he takes no damage at all. Black Cat double moves over to score the back left point that Winter Soldier is standing on. The score is 7 – 3 to Mike.

Round 2: I need to get some damage out here. Normally I’d go with Hood first so he could play Hood’s Gang but I don’t have any good targets for him. Instead I start out with Daredevil. The Ninjas do some nice damage to Toad who uses Slippery to get away, then they and Daredevil give Lizard all they’ve got… which turns out to be nothing whatsoever. Black Cat tickles Winter Soldier to get the Power needed to relieve him of his Cube and then runs off laughing. I feel like I’m committed now to dealing with Lizard so Winter Soldier unloads into him for very little effect, though I do at least draw out X-Ceptional Healing from one decent hit. Lizard pushes Daredevil off the centre, which felt quite rude getting the needed Wild off three dice (due to Shock) after what he’d survived already, and then threw Crimson Dynamo away. Hood finally dazes Lizard and Mike’s Hood heals Toad after KOing my Ninjas. Mysterio moves Bullseye and he just moves back and Kingpin ends by throwing Dynamo back off the middle after he’d moved in there, and sitting on it himself. The score goes to 15 – 5.

Round 3: I’m obviously not going to stop Mike scoring the single point needed to win the game so I decide to see how hard I can push the damage on this turn. Hood plays Hood’s Gang and KOs Lizard. Black Cat double moves to the back corner to guarantee the win; sensible move from Mike. Winter Soldier dazes Bullseye and puts a bit of damage on Kingpin who throws Crimson Dynamo and one-shots Mysterio from full health which felt quite rude as he didn’t even pay to avoid Mysterio’s defences. Daredevil goes after Hood but can only manage a single point of damage even after some help from the Ninjas reappearing. Toad takes Kingpin’s Cube and moves back to his Secure. I send Crimson Dynamo after Toad and I just need to do one damage to drop him with two rerolls available; needless to say Toad was still standing afterwards. Not that it affected the result but it could have made the score a little more respectable. We finish up at 22 – 8 to Mike.

Well that certainly didn’t go to plan! Mike was a lovely opponent and despite the loss I stand by my choice to avoid the Kingpin mirror match in the name of entertainment. Mike played a very sensible game of doing just exactly what was needed to score points at each time. I got bogged down in the dice rolls and I think that I possibly needed to be a bit lucky to beat a player of Mike’s calibre, which I certainly wasn’t here. Looking back I could probably have been better served by starting out round 2 with Winter Soldier as I could maybe have dropped Black Cat before she stole the Cube. However, with the way the dice fell from Daredevil (who I actually used first) it would have been irrelevant – those rolls would have done nothing to her just like they did nothing to Lizard. Well played by Mike who went on to win overall.

Game 3: James playing Avengers

I’m always pleased when I get to meet up with new people at events and so it was a pleasure to be drawn with James here and get to know him over a game. I won Priority and picked Secures, of course, and he chose the higher threat value. I’m still in two minds about whether Ant-Man is worth it just for Gamma Wave in Criminal Syndicate but since he’s in the roster for this purpose this was going to be his time to shine. I wasn’t sure whether I’d be better off with Hood and Mysterio or Daredevil and Bullseye for the last spots and went with the utility of the latter; I will admit that this was also partly because I play Hood and Mysterio all the time and decided to give them a rest for this one. Note that in a slightly weird coincidence I’m actually on the same table as the last game.

Extraction: Spider-Infected Invade Manhattan
Secure: Gamma Wave Sweeps Across Midwest
Threat: 17
My team: Kingpin, Bullseye, Shadowland Daredevil, Ant-Man, Crimson Dynamo
My cards: All According To Plan, Cruelty, Indomitable, Mission Objective, Patch Up
James’ team: Captain America (Steve Rogers), Captain America (Sam Wilson), Captain Marvel, Iron Man, Winter Soldier
James’ cards: Avengers Assemble, Inspiring Monologue, Mission Objective, Ricochet Blast, To The End Of The Line

Round 1: James declares that he’ll use Captain Steve’s leadership. I have Priority so my plan here is to collect three of the Spider-Infected and sit on the back and middle points. If the opportunity allows for Ant-Man to do a round one rush to score the back objective then I’ll take it but otherwise I’ll play it a bit cagier. Daredevil sits in the centre holding a Spider-Infected while the Ninjas take the back right one and move to the middle. This gives Captain Sam an easy opportunity to drop the Ninjas and he takes the back right Spider-Infected for himself. That was silly of me; the Ninjas could just as easily been at the back point. Winter Soldier goes to the left Spider-Infected and shoots Daredevil. Kingpin and Crimson Dynamo end up in the middle and Iron Man moves to collect the fallen Spider-Infected. Captain Marvel throws a casual four dice Energy Blast at Crimson Dynamo and he ends up almost dazed in one go! She’s also sitting on the back point so I don’t drop Ant-Man there. The score is 4 – 4, but helpfully James has left several of his characters away from the Shelters so hopefully that little bit of damage will be helpful in the long term.

Round 2: I can live with being one Spider-Infected down as long as I’m comfortable on the Gamma Shelters so I’m going to focus on that part and only target James’ Spider-Infected holders if they’re useful targets otherwise. Crimson Dynamo manages to apply Shock to Captain Marvel and Iron Man but pretty much nothing else substantial. Iron Man continues this trend by totally failing to do anything useful in return. Ant-Man uses Hitch A Ride to get to the back point and gently tickles Captain Marvel; sadly this also meant that he didn’t generate enough power for a Bullet Ant Barrage. In return she shakes Shock, turns on Binary Form and one-shots poor Scott. Daredevil uses Baton Snare on her to advance to the back point; he doesn’t do much to Captain Marvel but the Ninjas reappear and put a little more damage into Iron Man. Winter Soldier lets rip on Crimson Dynamo but James’ rolls are awful and he lives on one wound. Bullseye, who had been pushed off the back point by his Spider-Infected, hurts Winter Soldier but because I’m a total idiot I get the power use completely wrong and he can’t get back to the rear objective. Captain Steve hurts Daredevil and I have to use Indomitable to stay on the point. Kingpin pushes Iron Man away and throws Captain Marvel off the point; James plays Avengers Assemble to get people back onto the scoring points… at least it’s out of his hand now. Finally Captain Sam moves to my back point. The score is 9 – 7 in James’ favour; I made some poor choices there.

Round 3: I need to get better on this round with my positioning; most of James’ characters are badly injured and think that I can daze most of them this turn which should make the Secure scoring a bit easier. Kingpin has to come off the central point to get range to Captain Marvel; he then throws her into Winter Soldier to daze them both which I think is probably worth it. He collects the dropped Spider-Infected and then pushes Captain Steve away. Iron Man shakes Stun (oddly, I think I’d have gone for Shock) and then plays a really cool Ricochet Blast which almost one-shots Kingpin. Ant-Man dazes Captain Steve and uses Patch Up to heal Crimson Dynamo for the full five wounds. Captain Sam hurts Bullseye who uses Parting Shot to get out of range for a second shot; I guess Sam could have Charged but then he’d end up off that Gamma Shelter. Crimson Dynamo and Bullseye leave him on one wound which Daredevil is unable to apply, though the Ninjas do daze Iron Man. The score moves to a rather more comfortable 15 – 10 to me.

Round 4: I only need to score one more point to get over the line here but there are enough points available that I need to be careful to limit James’ scoring too. The first priority is to drop Sam Wilson as he’s the main way of scoring for James at this point; after that I probably want to just control rather than damage people as they’re all on full health again and I’m unlikely to KO them. I play All According To Plan and Bullseye gets us off to a good start by dazing Captain Sam. Winter Soldier pays for Inspiring Monologue on Captain Marvel which pretty much ensures that she’s not even worth the trouble of attacking. He then takes Kingpin down to one wound but rather than finishing him off he turns his attention to Daredevil and can’t daze him either. Kingpin, who will certainly be dazed very soon, activates now so that I actually get to use him. He throws Captain Marvel as far away as possible and then Headbutts Captain Steve to push him further away. Captain Steve throws Ant-Man off the point and into the Ninjas before Daredevil comes back to sit on the central point and does some minor chip damage in return. Iron Man KOs Ant-Man and dazes Kingpin in a highly effective turn, though this does mean that he’s still stranded out away from the scoring points. Crimson Dynamo picks up a fallen Spider-Infected and moves to capture the far Gamma Shelter. Captain Marvel double moves to the centre and throws Daredevil into the gun platform to daze him, relieving him of his Spider-Infected in the process. We finish up at 20 – 13 to me.

James was a lovely fun opponent and I look forward to seeing him across the table in the future once he’s got a bit more experience. For my part I made a lot of silly errors, especially in round two where I could have had Bullseye scoring my home Gamma Shelter instead of ceding it to Captain America for nothing. Overall my attrition plan worked quite well but James could possibly have pushed me harder on it by ensuring that his pieces moved to contest the objectives rather than sitting out in the open taking damage from the Crisis. Hood and Mysterio probably would have been a better option than Daredevil and Bullseye as I didn’t use them very cleverly; perhaps more importantly I totally forgot to use either Cruelty or Mission Objective which would have been the appropriate character cards if I’d made that change. Overall I was perhaps a bit fortunate to ‘get away’ with some poor play here.

Game 4: Ian playing S.H.I.E.L.D.

My final game I’m up against Ian who is apparently famous locally for S.H.I.E.L.D. jank. Luckily for me I usually find that S.H.I.E.L.D. jank is no match for just standing on all of the objectives and being annoying to get rid of! I win Priority (which is nice because it takes some of the most annoying Nick Fury Jr plays off the table) and pick my Secures as usual. We end up with Intrusions Open and Hammers and Ian chooses the slightly lower threat option. Daredevil makes the team this time as I think that I can use the Ninjas to body block some good landing spots for Ian’s heroes in the opening rounds, plus I think that they probably won’t have many Mystic attack options so he can use his full suite of defensive tech.

Extraction: Fear Grips World as ‘Worthy’ Terrorise Cities
Secure: Intrusions Open Across City As Seals Collapse
Threat: 18
My team: Kingpin, Hood, Mysterio, Shadowland Daredevil, Crimson Dynamo
My cards: All According To Plan, Indomitable, Hood’s Gang, Patch Up, The Grand Illusion
Ian’s team: Nick Fury Jr, Black Widow, Hawkeye, Iron Man, Taskmaster, The Original Human Torch
Ian’s cards: A New Age, Battlefield Medicine, Brace For Impact, Eye In The Sky, Sitrep

Round 1: I’m a little surprised not to see She-Hulk on Ian’s side as I thought that her throws and control would have been an big asset for him. I pick Kingpin’s leadership. My plan here is to get the right Hammer with Daredevil and sit the Ninjas on the far side of the left one so that anyone who wants it has to either waste an action dealing with the Ninjas (not hard, but also it’s quite inefficient) or come closer to my lines to do so. Otherwise, Ian hasn’t got enough on the left to displace Daredevil so I’ll flood the centre and then start trying to drop some of the more vulnerable S.H.I.E.L.D. heroes. Daredevil starts us off by collecting the right Hammer and the Ninjas move up in front of the left one, leaving it on the ground. Hawkeye has to spend both actions killing them – I didn’t actually think that Ian would leave that lying on the ground so Hood gratefully runs over and collects it. Fury comes forward and does no damage on a poor shot into Hood and most of my team moves to the middle. Torch gets a pretty sweet beam into Kingpin and Mysterio which I certainly could have lived without while Iron Man (who gets a Hammer) pushes Crimson Dynamo (also with a Hammer) over slightly into a very neat formation for my inevitable Torch-ing next turn. Black Widow ends the turn by moving onto the left point and playing Sitrep so Fury can join her The score is 5 – 1 to me.

Round 2: I have three Hammers and I’m in control of the Secures so I want to spend this turn working on attrition. I have a choice to make here – either I can try to drop Torch before he beams my three characters in the middle, or I can go with Hood to get Hood’s gang into play. I go with the latter and Hood starts blasting at Fury; my first couple of rolls are pretty rubbish despite the rerolls and it takes until the third shot before Fury has enough power to use Eye In The Sky and get himself out of there. Annoyingly I forgot that Hood was holding a Hammer until a few activations later so I could have been doing a lot more damage with him. Torch goes next, playing A New Age and beaming the hell out of Crimson Dynamo, Kingpin and Mysterio. This also gains him enough power to make Crimson Dynamo drop his Hammer and collect it himself. Kingpin tickles Torch rather gently and eventually throws him into Taskmaster so they both Brace it, before using Patch Up on Crimson Dynamo. Iron Man dazes Kingpin easily. Crimson Dynamo beams across Iron Man, Torch and Taskmaster which dazes Iron Man, then uses Propulsion Thrusters to line up another beam after collecting Iron Man’s Hammer, KOs the Agents and dazes the Torch and then finally gets dazed himself by Taskmaster’s counterattacks. What an activation! Fury comes across to the middle, summons some replacement Agents who pick up one of the fallen Hammers and uses Battlefield Medicine on himself. Mysterio, who is somehow still not dazed after all that carnage, picks up the other Hammer then KOs the Agents, dazes Taskmaster. Hawkeye Hook Arrows himself over to the action, picks up the Hammer dropped most recently by the Agents and dazes Mysterio. Daredevil one-shots Hawkeye and take his Hammer. Black Widow decides to leave Hood to his own devices over there on the left and hops through the Portal to the right. What an insane, hilarious round that turned out to be. Almost everyone took a turn at holding a Hammer at some point, I assume that this was all done to the background music of the Benny Hill theme music! When the smoke clears, I’m up 9 – 3.

Round 3: Everyone is bunched up in the middle so it’s time to get a nice big attrition swing going. Most of Ian’s characters are on full health as they’ve just flipped sides but they’re also very close to Mysterio and in a neat line for Crimson Dynamo to beam through. Mysterio pays for The Grand Illusion and Crismon Dynamo gets to work, beaming across Taskmaster (whose counterattacks are disappointing to say the least), Nick Fury and the Torch, annoyingly leaving the first two on a single wound each. To my surprise, Ian doesn’t activate Torch next but goes for Iron Man who uses Friday AI into a Unibeam for a really cool beam attack which KOs my Ninjas again, hurts both Crimson Dynamo and Kingpin and also clips Taskmaster to daze him. Kingpin throws Fury into the Torch to daze the S.H.I.E.L.D. leader then KOs the Torch with Hail To The King. Hawkeye goes for Crimson Dynamo but by this point he’s holding so much power that I can just Disruption Field pretty much every incoming attack and he achieves little. Mysterio dazes Black Widow and I realise that I can score this out by just hopping Daredevil onto the undefended right Portal, so I do that to finish us off at 16 – 4.

Thanks to Ian for a fun, if a little one-sided, game; I really enjoyed it despite his nickname! That was quite a brutal game, but I think that despite the good work that The Original Human Torch was putting in, the central brawl was very much favouring my game plan over Ian’s. Round 2 was very complex once we got into the cycle of badly-mauled characters picking up Hammers then getting jumped on by the next character and I think that we both had to consider quite carefully about who to activate at each time. I understood at the end that Ian had thought that my Ninjas had picked up a Hammer at the very start and perhaps that error threw him off his stride for the rest of the game.

Allan and I actually headed out before the end of the round as we had a long drive back home but I finished up in 5th place (of 20) which I’m very happy with. I could potentially have been a bit higher by scoring more VPs, for example by deliberately not finishing up in round 3 against Ian but dragging it out for another round, but that’s rather gamey and I don’t really like to be in that position where I’m slowing down a one-sided game for non-game reasons. I think that I’m going to put Criminal Syndicate to one side for now, despite just finding out that Rhino is affiliated, and try my hand with Brotherhood of (Evil) Mutants for a little while. Many thanks to Lee, Mike, James and Ian for four very entertaining games of MCP, to Anth for running the show and of course to Allan for chauffeuring me around for my gaming fun.

Categories: Battle reports, Marvel Crisis Protocol, Tournaments | Tags: , , | 5 Comments

Painted Darkstar

This is Darkstar, another member of the Winter Guard for Marvel Crisis Protocol. In the sense that most of the original Winter Guard are portrayed as imitations of the Avengers, Darkstar is clearly intended to be their version of Captain Marvel. In game terms she’s very different, bringing some minor defensive tech and a nice long range energy attack. Darkstar’s main cool trick is her Dimensional Portal, a huge Place effect for friendly characters with a massive pickup. The only downside to this is that it’s quite costly in terms of power, and Darkstar is not very good at generating power. For that reason, I’m planning to try her with Magneto’s Brotherhood – he’ll appreciate being ferried around the board without spending actions on it, and the extra power generation from Magneto’s leadership should make it a bit more practical to pay for Dimensional Portal.

Darkstar’s costume of yellow and black is almost perfectly designed to be the colours I find hardest to come out looking good. I ended up going back and forth many times to correct various lining errors and putting more layers on the yellow than I’d care to talk about. In the end, I’m happy with the result but it was more effort than the final result would suggest. I quite enjoyed Darkstar’s sculpt, though for some reason I’m unable to get a photo of her that doesn’t look like she’s tipping over.

Next on the painting table: Magus.

Categories: Marvel Crisis Protocol, Painting and modelling | Tags: | 15 Comments

Marvel Crisis Protocol tournament report: Into Another Marvel-ous Year 14Jan2023

New year, more Marvel Crisis Protocol games! I travelled with Gareth across to Common Ground Games in Stirling for the first of Allan’s MCP tournaments of 2023, meeting up with another couple of Edinburgh-based players on our way. This was going to be a fairly well-attended event considering that it’s just a random local day out; after a few late dropouts I think we ended up with 24 players.

Characters: (11)
—Kingpin (Wilson Fisk) Threat: 4
Black Cat (Felica Hardy) Threat: 3
Bullseye (Benjamin Poindexter) Threat: 2
Hood (Parker Robbins) Threat: 3
Modok (George Tarleton) Threat: 5
Mysterio (Quentin Beck) Threat: 3
Ant-Man (Scott Lang) Threat: 3
Lizard (Curtis Connors) Threat: 3
—Crimson Dynamo (Dimitri Bukharin) Threat: 4
—Shadowland Daredevil (Matt Murdock) Threat: 4
Hand Ninjas () Threat: 0

Tactics: (10)
All According To Plan
Shadow Organization
Hood’s Gang
The Grand Illusion
Monkey Brain Is Lizard Home
Indomitable
Patch Up
Mission Objective
Marked for Death
Cruelty

Secure Crisis: (3)
Super-Powered Scoundrels Form Sinister Syndicate! (Threat: 20)
Riots Spark Over Extremis 3.0 (Threat: 17)
Gamma Wave Sweeps Across Midwest (Threat: 15)

Extract Crisis: (3)
Deadly Legacy Virus Cured? (Threat: 19)
Research Station Attacked! (Threat: 15)
Struggle for the Cube Continues (Threat: 17)

This is largely the same Criminal Syndicate roster as I played last time, but I’ve acquired Shadowland Daredevil in the meantime so he was swapped in for Doctor Voodoo. In the intervening time there have been sweeping changes to the Crisis Cards which I’m generally in favour of as a quality-of-life improvement; however none of the ones I was using previously changed enough to make me want to swap them out, so the names remain the same even if the scoring is going to be a bit different.

Game 1: Ryan playing Web Warriors

Ryan and I got to play again which I was very happy with as he’s a lovely chap to share a game of MCP with. I won the priority roll and picked my Secures, though I think that I could have lived with Ryan’s Secures if it had gone the other way. We end up playing Gamma Wave and Senators and Ryan picks the lower choice of 15 threat. With the reduction of scoring on Gamma Wave I’ve been in two minds about whether Ant-Man is still worth it, so this was a good opportunity to find out. Otherwise my plan was to use Bullseye to sit on my back point and then brawl around the middle with the rest of my team, picking up Senators as opportunity allows.

Extraction: Mutant Extremists Target US Senators!
Secure: Gamma Wave Sweeps Across Midwest
Threat: 15
My team: Kingpin, Bullseye, Hood, Mysterio, Ant-Man
My cards: All According To Plan, Hood’s Gang, Indomitable, Patch Up, The Grand Illusion
Ryan’s team: Spider-Man (Miles Morales), Ghost Spider, Venom, Ms Marvel, Okoye
Ryan’s cards: All Webbed Up, Lethal Protector, Patch Up, Smash, Spider Tracker

Round 1: Mysterio and Ms Marvel get us started nice and early by moving up to pick up Senators. Kingpin joins Mysterio in the centre and it turns out that he’s in range for Venom to walk once and attack him, however he can’t quite contest the rear point when doing so. Bullseye takes up his traditional post on my rear point and Okoye comes into the middle where Hood totally fails to damage her with his mystic attacks. Ghost Spider collects another Witness on the left and I use Ant-Man shenanigans to get him onto the rear point. Spider-Man walks across to attack but fortunately doesn’t roll a wild to throw him off the point. The score is 6 – 3 to me.

Round 2: I’m in a fairly good position here so I’m going to mainly work on attrition this turn, although if the opportunity arise to collect more Senators then I will take that. Hood starts us out playing Hood’s Gang and then neatly drops both Gwen and Okoye, picking up the Witness dropped by the former. I love Hood. Ms Marvel pulls him and the moves to contest the far Shelter, so Ant-Man dazes her and sticks both Stun and Poison on Venom, receiving no damage in return from Venom’s counterattack. The symbiote makes no such mistake in his own activation though, easily dazing Ant-Man. Bullseye comes off his point to collect a Witness which might not have been a sensible move; he didn’t have anyone to attack and it felt like this was neutral for scoring this round and hopefully better next round. Spider-Man moves to the middle to drop All Webbed Up on half of my team and kicks Kingpin down to a single remaining wound. Ouch! Mysterio can’t do anything to him but does Patch Up my leader for a few wounds. Kingpin also can’t seem to hurt Spider-Man and ends up just pushing him away with a Headbutt. The score goes to 11 – 3 to me.

Round 3: All of Ryan’s heroes are full of power now (except Venom) so I need to try to either KO them before they activate or try to control them away from the action. I play All According To Plan to regain Priority. Kingpin hits Okoye and throw her into Spider-Man, dazing him. Gwen then gets revenge by one-shotting Hood, collecting his Senator and strolling over to my home Shelter. Ant-Man puts some nice damage into Ms Marvel. Okoye tries to deal with Bullseye but can’t finish him off so he shakes Slow and moves back to my rear point. Ms Marvel has clearly had enough of my nonsense – she plays Smash after transforming, then dazes Kingpin and one-shots Mysterio from full health; not a bad activation. Venom shakes Stun but somehow fails to hurt Ant-Man. That was a brutal round but at least Bullseye is scoring me some points; 13 – 6 to me.

Round 4: I only need to pick up 3 points to get over the line here so that is my priority. This turn I’m the one flush with power so it should be reasonable to keep hold of enough scoring points to complete this. Hood charges to the back to finish off Ms Marvel. He then uses Empowered Dark Lightning on Venom and the splash damage takes out Okoye. However Venom’s return attack takes him down to one wound. Still, two KOs in one activation is hard to argue with. Spider-Man doesn’t need to work too hard to finish him off, throwing him off into a lamppost. Ant-Man lets loose with his Bullet Ant Barrage and Venom finally has enough power for Lethal Protector. Sadly (for Venom) he takes enough damage this time to get dazed. Ant-Man then walks back to the rear point and Ryan cleverly uses Spider Tracker to move Spider-Man onto it too. Ghost Spider dazes Bullseye. Kingpin moves to control the far Shelter and Mysterio picks up a another fallen Senator. We finish up at 17 – 10 to me.

Thanks to Ryan for a fun game again. From my point of view that went pretty much as I had hoped, though it’s going to take me a while to get used to having six Senator tokens on the board in this Crisis. Hood had a crazy game, dazing/KOing four of Ryan’s team and getting KOed himself. I think that Ryan got too dragged into brawling with me, which is very much the game I want to play. He probably would have been better embracing more of the control aspects of his team as there are so many pushes and throws available to him.

Game 2: Steve playing Avengers

The second games sees me paired up with Steve who is currently running through some highly themed Avengers rosters – in this case ‘what if everyone had a damage reducer?’ which promised to be fun. I quite like the look of this as clearly Steve was set up to brawl and that basically suited me just fine. He won priority and picked his Extractions which I think slightly favours me (as I like my Secures more) but our Crises are not very different. Both cards are 20 threat so I don’t get any choice there. I’m going to stick with the Kingpin leadership as Steve’s crew mostly wants to be sitting on my Secures and punching me, so I might as well try to count double while it happens.

Extraction: Skrulls Infiltrate World Leadership
Secure: Super-Powered Scoundrels Form Sinister Syndicate
Threat: 20
My team: Kingpin, Bullseye, Hood, Mysterio, Shadowland Daredevil, Crimson Dynamo
My cards: All According To Plan, Hood’s Gang, Indomitable, Patch Up, The Grand Illusion
Steve’s team: Captain America (Steve Rogers), Iron Man, Luke Cage, Warmachine, Drax The Destroyer, Rogue
Steve’s cards: Avengers Assemble, Heroes For Hire, Mission Objective, Patch Up, Second Wind

Round 1: I should be able to hold three Secure points here and keep parity on Skrulls but I don’t have anyone great to get the further away of the central Skrulls. My plan is just to get what I can with the Extractions and make sure that I’m sitting on the Secures so that I can make Steve’s team come to me. Crimson Dynamo gets into the centre with Drax taking the leftmost Skrull and Iron Man on the right. Bullseye hurts Iron Man since he’s conveniently sitting in range. Luke Cage gets pushed picking up the other central Skrull and so Mysterio is able to pull him in a bit further. Kingpin lays into Cage who eventually plays Heroes For Hire on himself (I hate that this is possible!), throwing my leader into Hood. Hood fails to dodge any of the incoming fat New Yorker and is later flattened by a Charge from Rogue. The score is 5 – 4 to Steve.

Round 2: I need to relieve either Cage or Drax of their Skrull in order to bring this back to equal; alternatively I might be able to bully my way onto one of the rear objectives if Steve really commits to a brawl on my side. Luke Cage and Iron Man pay for Second Wind and then Cage bounces ineffectively off Mysterio. Kingpin tickles Rogue gently and throw her into Cage before she too turns on Mysterio. Crimson Dynamo finally dazes Luke Cage who immediately plays Mission Objective to hand his Skrull off to Rogue. Captain America moves to the centre but can’t finish Mysterio either. I will note that twice in a row Steve paid for his characters to ignore Mysterio’s Mystic defence only for me to roll a Crit into a Block – sorry Steve! Truly it is better to be lucky than good. Daredevil moves onto the back left point; Drax attacks him for very little effect and I pay for Indomitable to ride out the throw. Warmachine come across to take my own left point in return and Hood opens up on him to little effect. Over on the right Iron Man retreats to the back point (I’d hoped he would get greedy and come forward) with the Ninjas in hot pursuit; Bullseye throws a couple of knives at Rogue and uses Patch Up on Mysterio. The score now goes to 10 – 8 to Steve, though it seems that I forgot a photo.

Round 3: I’m a little behind but generally my characters are standing where I need them whereas three of Steve’s will need to walk to get anywhere useful. This is the All According To Plan turn, and Hood starts me off by playing Hood’s Gang and dropping the necessary two points of damage each into Warmachine and Rogue. Captain America throws Crimson Dynamo off the central point and Bullseye rolls like a champion to dazes Captain America in return. Luke Cage and Iron Man pay for Avengers Assemble; the former moves back toward the action while Iron Man moves further way up the board, though I don’t really understand why. Cage continues to hit Mysterio uselessly and gets moved away with Hypnosis Gas, triggering Tricks and Traps to move onto the central objective. Drax throws Daredevil off the point and he just moves back – I don’t bother attacking as I don’t need to power up Drax with a Vengeance token and I’m quite happy to just have Daredevil sit there and score me points. Iron Man shoots Crimson Dynamo but doesn’t roll the wild to push him away. In return, Dynamo finally dazes Iron Man and Propulsion Thrusters onto the rear right objective. The score swaps to 15 – 11 to me.

Round 4: There are a lot of points on the table here so I still need to be very careful not to give anything significant up to Steve. Luke Cage is vulnerable to Bullseye so unless Steve uses him first I can certainly finish him off and take that threat off the table. I think that a defensive, Secure-focussed play here will still be enough to see me over the line. Rogue starts us off by dropping Hood, so Bullseye retaliates by KOing Cage. Captain America, who by now is very sick of Mysterio’s nonsense, dazes him. The Ninjas pick up a Skrull and run for the corner while Daredevil moves away to score the central point instead as Drax needs to gain power to throw so I can stop him doing that by just keeping him out of range of anyone. Iron Man probably need to daze Crimson Dynamo to keep Steve in the game but he can’t manage it thanks to Disruption Field. Kingpin does very little to Warmachine but does throw him away; Drax manages to hurt Kingpin and throw him off the left point. The score finishes at 20 – 15.

That ended up being a very fun, tight game where all of our characters got a chance to do their Cool Thing. I got lucky a few times with Mysterio taking a lot longer to deal with than maybe he should have, but I was mainly trying to think about my positional play. For the most part, I was able to keep my characters standing on the Secures while some of Steve’s (mainly Luke Cage) just never got to be in the right place. Daredevil ended up never making an attack all game but because of his defences, and the fact that Steve never moved Drax onto the Secure to deny my cover, he scored me enough points and kept Drax busy for long enough to seal the result.

Game 3: Liam playing Guardians of the Galaxy

It seemed inevitable that I’d eventually get paired up with the mighty Liam, this time packing a Thanos-centred Guardians roster. I won Priority and chose my Secures so we ended up with Superpowered Scoundrels and Montesi; slightly to my surprise Liam went for the lower threat of 18. With Thanos in play it would be hard to keep reliable scoring of the Secures so I decided to try a cheeky Daredevil play to try to get ahead on the book and then just do what I can not to give up too much on the Secures. I used Kingpin’s leadership thinking that it might help for the times where we were one and one on the objective.

Extraction: The Montesi Formula Found
Secure: Super-Powered Scoundrels Form Sinister Syndicate
Threat: 18
My team: Kingpin, Hood, Mysterio, Shadowland Daredevil, Crimson Dynamo
My cards: All According To Plan, Hood’s Gang, Indomitable, Patch Up, The Grand Illusion
Liam’s team: Star-Lord, Groot, Rocket, Toad, Thanos (Reality and Space gems)
Liam’s cards: Deadly Duo, Fall Back, Lovable Misfits, Recalibration Matrix, We Are Groot

Round 1: Thanos, Star-Lord and Rocket get Winging It tokens. The Ninjas take my home Book and Vanish to give it to Mysterio, then Daredevil breathes deeply and goes in the middle to get the central one. Toad, Hood, Groot and Kingpin all take up station on the edges of the board. Thanos comes forward and hurts Daredevil. Crimson Dynamo shocks the Mad Titan and uses Propulsion Thrusters to get on the central point while Star-Lord take a wound off Hood so I change him into his Possessed form as I can see that I’ll need the armour. Rocket comes forward and leaves Daredevil on one health. The score is 5 – 3 to me.

Round 2: I need to get Daredevil’s book to safety and find some way of displacing Groot. I can already see that this is going to be the kind of game where I don’t get to do anything with Kingpin other than walk onto objectives after Thanos teleports him away; hopefully the Shock will blunt his power generation a bit. The same characters get Winging It tokens. Daredevil gently tickles Rocket but doesn’t manage to roll the Wild needed to teleport over to the right objective; looking back I’d have been better to walk. Rocket plays Deadly Duo and follows up with a Large Hadron Collider to daze Mysterio. Crimson Dynamo dazes Rocket (I was surprised that Liam ‘let’ me do this but in retrospect I suppose that it was to abuse Death’s Decree even harder) and collects Mysterio’s fallen Book. Groot heals himself and dazes Daredevil so Hood just strolls over and collects the Book and moves back to his point. Star Lord dazes him on the first attack (four wounds through cover and Hood’s great reducer) and picks up the book while scoring that point. Thanos leaves Crimson Dynamo on a single wound so the Shock is clearly not slowing him down and moves Kingpin back off his point. The score goes to 8 – 7 to Liam.

Round 3: I need to start wearing down some of Liam’s characters and get those Books back or this will be over very quickly. Liam gives his Winging It tokens to the same characters. Crimson Dynamo hoses down Groot and Rocket, shocking them both but not finishing either of them. I made a big mistake here thinking that Mysterio’s Grand Illusion card needed to be played in his own activation; if I’d remembered then I could have played it and that might have made a difference. Rocket one-shots Mysterio and then finishes Crimson Dynamo to boot. Hood and Star-Lord hurt each other but the advantage is with Star-Lord as he’s healthy and holding a book. Kingpin throws Thanos at Groot to daze him. Thanos then one-shots Daredevil – seven damage against one of the best defensive profiles in the game, plus Thanos had Shock – then teleports Kingpin off the point and Rocket onto it. The score goes to 14 – 8 to Liam.

Round 4: This is pretty much over as I don’t have enough characters remaining to actually achieve much, plus Liam even has Toad just sitting there happily scoring every turn but ready to get involved. Hood plays Hood’s Gang and finally dazes Star-Lord. Rocket hurts Crimson Dynamo and I do at least KO him in the end. Groot unleashes his spender on Crimson Dynamo to throw him away, then heals. Kingpin hasn’t got much of a better option than to throw Thanos away; of course Thanos just walks back and displaces Kingpin in turn. We finish up at 18 – 11.

Another fun game with Liam, and another defeat. I actually felt that I had the right overall idea here but I made too many unforced errors. Notably I could have just run to (relative) safety with Daredevil at the start of round 2, and I should have played The Grand Illusion at the start of round 3. To beat someone as good as Liam I need to play an error-free game. I wasn’t helped by Liam’s insane dice but I guess I had some pretty good fortune in the earlier rounds so I can’t complain too much there.

Game 4: Nick playing Guardians of the Galaxy

Since I was out of the running to finish undefeated I decided to try to run all of the characters in my roster (except Black Cat who I was sharing with Gareth – since he was still 3 – 0 at this point I didn’t want to distract him on this point) which meant that Lizard and MODOK were in regardless of what we ended up playing. I got to meet Nick who was submarining his way gloriously through the tournament. I won priority and chose my Secures as usual, and Nick picked 17 threat. With 8 threat tied up in my ‘auto-picks’ I just went with my favoured characters for the rest of the crew. I did realise as we started deploying that I was highly vulnerable to being left babysitting two objectives while the rest of my team got dogpiled on the others, but anyway I’d figured we’d have a fun ‘no pressure’ kind of game to finish the day.

Extraction: Paranoia Pummels Populace!
Secure: Riots Spark Over Extremis 3.0
Threat: 18
My team: Kingpin, Bullseye, Hood, MODOK, Lizard
My cards: All According To Plan, Cruelty, Hood’s Gang, Indomitable, Patch Up
Nick’s team: Star-Lord, Groot, Rocket, Winter Soldier, Captain America (Sam Wilson), Ghost Spider
Nick’s cards: Brace For Impact, Deadly Duo, Patch Up, Warpath, We Are Groot

Round 1: Groot, Captain America and Winter Soldier get the Winging It tokens. Lizard takes the right token, Groot takes the centre, Kingpin goes on the left and Captain America takes the final central token. MODOK moves up to attack Groot but can’t get any damage through, this means that he can’t use Bow to move Groot forward either. Over on the right, the same trick works better for Nick as Ghost Spider pulls in Lizard and the gunline opens up. Considering Lizard’s defences I thought it was possible that he might live through the barrage but he doesn’t and eventually Star-Lord is able to pick up his token. The score goes to 4 – 4 – however we did the scoring wrong by not applying the bonus point and only fixed this at the end. The scores presented here are what we thought we were doing at the time.

Round 2: I need to take one of those Paranoia tokens back so that I can pick up a minor lead and then hope to ride this out; my best bet is probably the one on Groot as that will also force Nick to come into my hitters if he wants to play. The same three characters get Winging It tokens. Hood plays Hood’s Gang but needs two actions to drop Star-Lord. Captain America charges back to the middle point to throw a shield at Lizard. MODOK unleashes all he’s got at Groot but leaves him on one wound; at least Nick has to play Brace For Impact to avoid the last point of damage. Groot does fail to hurt Hood but heals himself. Lizard dazes Ghost Spider by throwing Groot at her then Winter Soldier one-shots Hood. Bullseye drops Rocket to finish the chaos for this turn. The score is now 8 – 8.

Round 3: I feel like I’m hanging on here despite not getting to use Kingpin at all. I didn’t get to really change anything last turn so I need to somehow get hold of the Extraction tokens which might require desperate measures. I play All According To Plan. The Winging It tokens go to Captain America, Ghost Spider and Winter Soldier. Hood KOs Star-Lord and Lizard leaves Ghost Spider on one wound. She plays Patch Up on Groot and Rocket dazes Bullseye. MODOK is forced to come off his point chasing Groot but can’t do enough to him, and Groot is clear mad as he one-shots Hood then uses his spender to smite MODOK down by half his wounds and fling him across the map into irrelevance. The big tree finishes up by playing We Are Groot to tidy up all the chip damage that I’d been doing. Winter Soldier and Captain America join up to KO Lizard. The score is 14 – 10 to Nick – if we’d scored correctly then I think he’d actually have won it here (17 to 13?) but we played another round even though nothing was going to happen in it.

Round 4: It’s basically impossible for me to stop Nick from scoring at least two points since I only have 3 characters left. Bullseye throws a knife at Rocket and Ghost Spider pulls him away to safety. We just rather needlessly move our minis back onto their objectives and let the turn end passively. At this point we realise our error with the scores and try to fix it; we recorded 21 – 17 to Nick which honestly feels a bit flattering to me.

Thanks to Nick for a great game, but I’m sorry I didn’t make him work harder for it. Despite my poor team choice I think that if the dice had fallen differently (for example, if I’d actually damaged Groot in round 1 with MODOK or if Lizard had survived his firing squad, neither of which are completely impossible) then I could possibly have made a game of this – I wonder if double walking MODOK to the middle to get a token at the start might have been useful instead. Moreover, I don’t think that I should have had Extremis 3.0 in my Crisis selection at all, so I think that for next time I’ll remove that and replace it with either Demons Downtown or Portals Collapse. I might (especially if I pick Demons Downtown) also replace MODOK with Doctor Voodoo.

I finish the day in midtable respectability at 8th of 24 players, top of the 2 – 2 bracket. Well done to Gareth for going 3 – 1 overall, losing only to Liam in the last game. Many thanks to Ryan, Steve, Liam and Nick for four great games of MCP, and as always to Allan for running the event. I shall be back, either with more Criminal Syndicate or possibly with the Brotherhood of Mutants.

Categories: Battle reports, Marvel Crisis Protocol, Tournaments | Tags: , , | 3 Comments

Painted Warmachine

This is Warmachine, another one of the Avengers for Marvel Crisis Protocol. He’s quite simple in the game; he stands on points in crowded Crisis maps, using his cool beam attack to hose down the other team while not dying in return. There was a brief window where Warmachine seemed to be everywhere because of a combination of the ‘Sam Spam’ lists that were prevalent at the time and an interaction with the All You Got tactics card, but the conditions that made both of them so desirable changed and so I’d say that Warmachine gets a pretty normal amount of time in the sun. I think that there is definitely room for a team filled with characters who can reduce damage, otherwise I’d have to say that I slightly prefer Iron Man’s control options over the short range firepower provided by Warmachine. Not that it’s related to game, but in the MCU I far prefer Don Cheadle’s understated Warmachine over Robert Downey Jr’s egotistical Iron Man.

Needless to say, I found Warmachine to be a very simple paintjob, as befits his unadorned suit. I did try to mix up the colours a bit by using a grey base coat rather than black for some of the sections of armour but otherwise it was all about picking out the red spots. It seems ironic that I spent much more effort on the jet explosion of the base element! Simple, but also very enjoyable.

Next on the painting table: Darkstar.

Categories: Marvel Crisis Protocol, Painting and modelling | Tags: | 11 Comments

Painted Ursa Major

This is Ursa Major, a member of the Winter Guard for Marvel Crisis Protocol. In rules terms he’s pretty much a mix of Kingpin (cool spender attack with Stagger and throw baked in) and Crossbones (Aggressive to get him where he needs to be) and I think that he’s potentially got some interesting game into control lists as a result of the Aggressive to stop him being pushed off points. I’ve seen Ursa Major get played a few times in Winter Guard, though that might be mainly because they only have four affiliated characters so it’s hard to make a roster that doesn’t include all of them. He is slightly limited in mobility due to his Short move speed, but his Charge ability plus Aggressive can keep him involved in the action from turn two onward.

Obviously most of Ursa Major was pretty easy to paint as it’s all just brown. Despite that I had a fun, albeit very quick, time painting him as I tried to bring out some of the texture of his fur. I also paid special attention to the non-fur parts of the miniature, mainly inside his big bear mouth, and I’m pretty pleased with the way it’s come out. Ursa Major isn’t the most exciting miniature I’ve ever worked on but it was a very pleasant process.

Next on the painting table: Warmachine.

Categories: Marvel Crisis Protocol, Painting and modelling | Tags: | 12 Comments

Painted Hela, Queen of Hel

This is Hela, Queen of Hel, another Asgardian for Marvel Crisis Protocol. She’s kind of famous for not being that great in the game at the moment, but Atomic Mass Games have done a few balance passes so maybe that won’t last forever. My main issue with Hela isn’t so much that she’s bad, but rather that she’s just not very exciting to play – basically she just attacks people and has no control or shenanigans at all. What Hela does have is a mechanic where she can collect Captured Soul tokens and spend them on various things (notably not dying), which makes me think that she might have a place in a really wide roster where your allies getting KO’d can potentially work in your favour.

Despite having a rather cool sculpt, I found painting Hela to be something of a chore. For a start, anything other than green swirly stuff would have looked weird, but also her costume is green so it doesn’t contrast very well. I also found it quite tough to work out whether some of the detail was said swirly stuff or a cool bit of her sword or costume. All in all, I think that Hela was my least favourite MCP miniature to work on, and I’m glad that she’s off the ‘to do’ pile.

Next on the painting table: Acolytes.

Categories: Marvel Crisis Protocol, Painting and modelling | Tags: | 11 Comments

Painted Crimson Dynamo

Here is Crimson Dynamo, leader of the Winter Guard for Marvel Crisis Protocol. For four threat you get a seriously tough defensive option. Crimson Dynamo can throw out Shock on his amazing beam attack and has armour to reduce incoming damage. Most interesting is his Disruption Field ability which forces incoming attackers to reroll their dice. Obviously this has applications to roll successes into failures but where it really shines is when a particular roll is needed for a result. Need a wild for a throw? Try again! Adding to his utility with the beam attack is Crimson Dynamo’s Propulsion Thrusters power to allow him to get into exactly the right position without needing to spend an action moving.

Painting Crimson Dynamo was a very simple exercise as he only has about 3 colours on him. Nonetheless I found him a really satisfactory miniature to paint with his clean lines and open pose; the bright yellow on his arc reactor adds a nice little bit of brightness that would otherwise be lacking.

Next on the painting table: Hela, Queen of Hel.

Categories: Marvel Crisis Protocol, Painting and modelling | Tags: | 15 Comments

Painted Ghost Rider

Here is Ghost Rider, another miniature for Marvel Crisis Protocol. Ghost Rider is thematically and actually affiliated with Defenders and Midnight Sons but he’s been a popular splash character in many other affiliations as he provides an interesting suite of abilities. Firstly, due to the Spirit of Vengeance power, Ghost Rider gains a power when anyone else on his team is damaged by an enemy attack, which means that he generally has plenty of power to spend when he needs it. This lets him constantly be a thorn by spending for Wicked’s Judgement to damage attackers based on the number of critical hits they roll when attacking another. All this means that in my experience, Ghost Rider needs to be dealt with early on or he’ll be a pain in the neck for the whole game. However, this does also play into his favour as one of his two character-specific Tactics Cards, Deal With The Devil, allows him to avoid being KOed and instead replace another friendly character to come back with full health. All in all, it can be a frustrating experience playing into Ghost Rider and that probably means that I should play him myself a bit more often.

Painting Ghost Rider was quite interesting as almost everything is either black or made of fire. I tried to make the leather clothes look more different from the bike by giving them a wash with brown ink; not only does this change the colour a little but it gives a slightly shinier effect. The flame effects were really fun to do and they stand out beautifully against the darkness of the rest of the mini. I didn’t use washes at all on these as I wanted to keep the brightness, starting with yellow and then doing the higher up (and therefore less hot, assuming that this also applies to magical fire) parts in orange and finally red. I’ve seen people top out flame effects with blacks and dark greys but I didn’t want that here as it would start to blend back in with the rest of the miniature.

Next on the painting table: Patriarch.

Categories: Marvel Crisis Protocol, Painting and modelling | Tags: | 18 Comments

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