• Tag Archives X-Men
  • Vying for your coin: Kickstarter Confluence

    As we star down the barrel of the warmer months in the Northern hemisphere, we’d normally be planning adventures outside, but the vagaries of a global pandemic continue to have many of us staying inside for our own wellbeing, as well as for the good of our communities and loved ones. Thankfully, there’s some super groovy things out there to keep us occupied, and we’re in the middle of three Kickstarter campaigns that may pique your interest. Three contenders have been circling my wallet like hungry sharks…

    Marvel United: X-Men

    Anyone who’s follows Lost Hemisphere for any length of time knows I’m a fan of chibi models – there are plenty of Ninja Division products in the Gdaycave – and a lifelong love of comic books means I’m well familiar with every single model in this kickstarter. At the time of writing there are  49 models in the core pledge alone (including the Stretch Goal additions), and an additional 29 in the Additional Options, before you even consider that they’re also including all of the models from the original Marvel United kickstarter as optional buys.

    Is the game any good? I have no idea, I haven’t played the original though will note that it’s received some exceptionally good reviews, and if you scored the expansions there’s a *lot* of options and gameplay variants. It’s a co-op game, with the players all teaming up against whatever the mission parameters are, and each expansion introduces new concepts – such as Apocalypse being reinforced by any of his Horsemen you weren’t able to defeat, or the members of the Phoenix Five powering up as you defeat each one, culminating in the last opponent having the full power of the Phoenix Force.

    The appeal for me is, frankly, the amazing figures. I still low-key kick myself for not buying into the last one because it means there’s a Beta Ray Bill figure out there that I don’t own, but for this round the designers have done some super deep dives into X-lore. Hell, you can field the entire Peter David era X-Factor, with everyone except Havok in the right uniforms. I guess he didn’t like the puffy jacket…

    The models are gorgeous, it’s almost like they know that the punters won’t care about how good the game is if they’ve got an amazing collection of chibi models of beloved characters…

    Monster Hunter World

    In stark contract to the X-Men, I’ll confess to knowing nothing about Monster Hunter World other than (a) it’s popular, (b) there’s a movie in the works. While Pokemon made its mark on pop culture with Pocket Monsters, Monster Hunter World seems to be carving its way with Definitely Not Pocket Monsters. I mean, unless you’ve got some enormous pockets.

    This one’s produced by Steamforged, whose track record includes the very successful (albeit inexplicably abandoned) Guild Ball, and more recently, the Epic Encounters series of self-contained encounters and mini-campaigns for D&D. Monster Hunter World is a visually gorgeous adventure into a world of, well, hunting enormous beasties, armed with comically exaggerated weaponry, so the game is loaded with miniatures accordingly.

    The core game has you scouring the Ancient Forest, but you also have the option to fight your way through the Wildspire Waste, and there are several additional add-ons for more weapon options and three Elder Dragons – Kushala Daora, Nergigante and Teostra.

    Without having played the video game, the main appeal personally is the sweet looking minis. The hunters are 33mm scale, but the gribblies range from 75mm to 255mm in height, meaning if you’re looking for a stock of giant monsters to paint your way through, you’ll get your fill here. Gameplay wise, each hunter and each monster is unique in how they play. Hunters are defined by their weapon selection, so with 20 different heroes to choose from (potentially more to be unlocked by stretch goals), there’s going to be some decent replayability before you even consider that each monster will also have its own profile, attacks, and generally ruin your day. Monsters will spit venom at you, slam you around the board, try to drown you in putrescent sludge, bullrush past your teammates to pin you in a corner…

    I have no idea if it’s better to be melee-centric or focused more on ranged attacks, but I’ll take the Insect Glaive based on the name alone.

    Riot Quest: Chilly Con Carnage

    Ah, now here’s something I know a little about! Riot Quest is Privateer Press’ alternate timeline game where the more mercenarilly inclined survivors of The Claiming scavenge their way across the remnants of the Iron Kingdoms, fighting for money, power, and cool loot. The main game was kickstarted last year, and the Chilly Con Carnage kickstarter gives us an opportunity to get early access to the expansions that make up the second half of the Wintertime Wasteland block.

    From the Karchev/Deathjack boss fight expansion to the Heist expansion with Princess Delores, now’s your chance to add new depth to one of the most entertaining arena board game experiences out there, bringing the Warmachine/Hordes flavor with a dash of wackiness.

    Form your ranks with new heroes, including Widget: Mathlete Archaeologist and the combo hero Dreyfuss & Flubbin: Storm Patrol! Or of course you can add the Karchev/Deathjack hybrid monstrosity, but you know me, I’m all about the Living Covenant…

     

    The kickstarter also gives you a chance to pick up either of the Riot Quest starters and alternate sculpts of some of the earlier heroes (including the Blinged Out versions of Bamfist and Gubbin), not to mention Kommandog Barkevich, who I am told is a very good boy, and appreciates pats.

     

    Three very different kickstarters, no doubt appealing to different audiences, but I think it’s fair to say there’s something for everyone to help keep you busy once they deliver, even if it’s only staring at the pile of models you’ve just garnered and trying to figure out what to paint first. What’s tickling your fancy?

     


  • MCP in the post GenCan’t haze

    Last weekend we didn’t get to have GenCon in the traditional sense, but we did get to have GenCan’t (or GenCon Online, however you choose to refer to it). There was no slowly going deaf and hoarse as you tried to communicate in the vendor or tournament hall, there was no rushing through the doors to get a copy of a limited release game, there was no big fuzzy machine handing out soap and watermelons (yes, that was a thing last year), but I think it’s fair to say that Atomic Mass Games knocked it out of the park, considering the socially distanced limitations they were working with, by presenting a string of spoilers and reveals for models in the pipeline, and it all started with this…

    After a full year of “X-Men plz?!?”, well, we’re getting X-Men! The rosters are opening with the leaders of the Blue and Gold teams – Cyclops and Storm – along with the rampaging Canuck Wolverine, and Mama McCoy’s bouncing baby boy, the Beast. With a roster as wide and varied as Xavier’s mutants, I think these are excellent choices to kick the door down with. Storm and Cyclops could each come with a different Leadership ability for their teams, Storm could also be added to the Wakanda affiliation, and both Wolverine and Beast have also been Avengers. There’s some great opportunity for thematic cross-pollination for those of us that love playing affilition-centric teams.

    Add to the mix that Beast – sculpted by the inimitable Brian Dugas – comes with an alternate hand that has him holding a book rather than a clenched fist – and all I know is I’m going to have to practice my freehand to replicate a teeny tiny dustjacket!

    Where you have X-Men, can the Brotherhood truly be too far behind? Magneto and Mystique have led the Brotherhood at different times, Sabretooth is an obvious counterpart to Wolverine, but I think more than any other character I’m excited for Toad. He’s been an iconic member of the Brotherhood since its inception, and in terms of gameplay, his ability to move opposing characters away from objectives should be downright prodigious. Never mind how fantastic the sculpt looks, and how much I enjoy painting golden yellows 😉

    Also of note in this pack is the two bases littered with bent and twisted metal. Mobile obstacles for Magneto to send careening around the table maybe?

    The reveals didn’t stop there, of course. That was just the opening salvo.

    Hot on the heels of the X-Men we saw teasers and full model shots, of Kingpin, Bullseye, Taskmaster and the Punisher. As Marvel’s New York Underworld unfolded (remember, kids, Punisher’s entry into Marvel comics as as a hitman hired to kill Spider-Man, though I don’t expect him to share any affiliation with Fisk & co. when released) we were also made privy to a brand new terrain pack.

    A skid steer, mixer, demountable office, a selection of barriers and barrels make up the Construction Site terrain pack, an excellent complement to your New York themed tabletop.

    My main ponderance with this block is just how Bullseye’s unerring accuracy will be reflected on the table. Does he count blanks as hits, perhaps?

    Daredevil  was next in the queue, sharing this tableau with Dr Strange (who I’m super keen to get my mitts on). While Daredevil doesn’t share the Defenders affiliation (the full roster for which was also spoiled), we did confirm that Luke Cage and Iron Fist are on the way, so fielding the TV incarnation of the team is getting closer and closer to a possibility… but for now, defending reality will do without ol’ Hornhead. With Ghost Rider on the team, battles through the streets of the city may be more in line than across the rooftops of New York.

    We’ve known Angela has been in the works for some time – She’s on the Asgard and Guardians of the Galaxy affiliation cards – but it’s fair to say that Asgard’s Assassin will unleash some slicey-dicey pain upon your opponents, despite her ribbon trails offering hugs and kisses to anyone who cares to read them.

    With the Asgardian ranks gaining a new model, is it any surprise that Amora the Enchantress was also revealed? Arguably one of Thor’s greatest opponents (along with Loki and Surtur), Enchantress is an exceptionally powerful sorceress and illusionist, more than capable of messing with an entire team of Avengers all on her lonesome. In the absence of Mephisto, Dormammu or Baron Mordo, I’d say the bad guys are getting their own Dr Strange. Of course, he has a much better moustache.

    And then there’s Jennifer Walters, the Sensational She-Hulk. One of my favorite Marvel characters, she’s possessed of strength almost on par with her cousin Bruce, but she retains her incredibly sharp legal mind with hulk’d out. There have been entire comic series written about her that had pretty much nothing to do with her strength and invulnerability, and everything about her work as a lawyer. I’m really hoping she gets abilities named things like “Motion to dismiss!” where she throws an opponent away, or “Objection!” where she negates an opponent’s use of a power by leading them in verbal circles until they’re confused, or somesuch.

     

    Add in painting videos, twitch streams discussing Atomic Mass Games’ design process, painting contest and more, and I think that all told it was a very successful GenCan’t for AMG. Here’s looking forward to another fun year… once we can actually get together to play games 😉